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Bill Hybels was at a luncheon, sitting across from a black man, built like a football player, with a distinctively Muslim name. He told Pastor Hybels that he enjoyed reading one of his books. Bill Hybels looked a little puzzled so the Muslim explained to him how he became a Christian.

He told Pastor Hybels that in his profession he hosted a lot of cocktail parties. He said that after he gets a drink and hors d'oeuvres he often finds himself standing alone until he quietly leaves because no one talks to him. At one such party he was standing by himself as usual and he noticed a group of white people talking and having a great time. One person in the group looked his way and noticed he was standing by himself. This white guy excused himself from the group and walked across the room, stuck out his hand to the Muslim and shook his hand. They talked about their families, sports, and business in general.

Finally in their conversation the issue of faith came up. When he mentioned to the gentlemen that he was Muslim he was sure the guy would make a quick exit from their conversation. Instead he said, "Well, I'm a Christ-follower, but, truth be told, I know almost nothing about Islam. I wonder if you would be willing over breakfast some day to give me a bird's-eye version of your faith system." The Muslim almost fainted. He was surprised a Christian was willing to associate with him.

Over several breakfasts the Muslim told how his family had attended church but they saw racism had infiltrated the church so his family left the church and their faith. So in their discussion he asked his new friend to refresh his memory of the Christian faith. Not long after their friendly discussion the Muslin committed his life to Jesus and became active in a local church.

The faith of this man lived out in relationship to his new friend, stimulated faith in that friend. Faith lived out in relationship to others is a catalyst to releasing faith, believers and unbelievers alike.

(From a sermon by Bret Toman, Fresh Faith by the Faith of Faithful Friends, 1/3/2011)

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