What Americans Don't Know
By: Jim O'Brien
Stopping in Nashville on the return from Florida, we took a couple of days to connect with the grandchildren. It included an invitation to stay at a premier hotel, a step up from our typical travel experience.
After a few meals in the hotel restaurant we became friends with the waiter. He called our grandchildren by name and we asked about his family.
His thick accent revealed that English was not his native tongue and he eventually revealed that he was from Egypt. I mentioned that he comes from a country with a rich and ancient history. We talked about the pyramids and Egypt's place as the cradle of civilization. His eyes brightened as he declared Egypt had a strong Christian background and that he was a Coptic Christian.
It's a distant concept for Westerners but the word Coptic comes from the Greek word meaning Egyptian. There was a time when Christianity was synonymous with Egypt but invaders came in and changed the country.
My waiter friend declared, "We are not Arabs! We are Egyptians!" This distinction was not new to me. It brought back memories of a college friend from Iran who declared adamantly that he was not Arab-he was Persian. It may seem a minor distinction to Americans, but Arabs are different ethnically, culturally and religiously from others in the Middle East. These people have fought unsuccessfully for several millennia to preserve their identity.
What followed was an impassioned explanation that Arabs-and particularly Muslims-came into Egypt where there was freedom of religion. "They stole our country!" he lamented. "We were nice to them, offered them education, health care and jobs. But they are a people of hatred."
He talked for several minutes, almost pleading for understanding. His people wanted peace. It was their country. They were Christian and they showed love to strangers, their moral obligation. But they were betrayed.
I listened, almost dumbfounded as he explained that he had to leave his country because his culture had been stolen by infiltrators.
"Americans don't understand!" He said. "These people are destructive."
His words were so politically incorrect that I wondered as he spoke if America has lost the ability to hear truth about enemies who are bent on destruction?
What is being eroded is the firm belief in the value of Christian culture. Our country is not better by virtue of DNA-there is no American DNA. This nation is better because of Christian values-and if we don't understand that we are lacking in knowledge of history as well as gratitude to our God.
Arabs are not worse by DNA-they suffer from an ideology taught by a religion that turns good people into tyrants and would return the world to primitive barbarism. This firsthand report came from a man who had to leave his home in Egypt to escape the violence brought by invaders filled with hate. It is a country that once lived in peace with the rest of the world and is now fraught with division caused by a destructive creed.
What would it take for you to leave your family, property and country to flee to a foreign country? Where would you go? Is there another America that offers refuse from invaders?
What American's don't know is history. And those who don't know history are condemned to repeat it.Until next time,
Pastor, Church of God Cincinnati
You can contact Jim O’Brien by: