Ever since I returned from Damascus the thought has been in my mind to pray specifically for each person I met. Like maybe set aside a day to especially remember Wasim or Amer or Jake or Samer or Barea and so forth and introduce them here so I can always look back on my blog and remember them. I've just been dragging my heels not sure where to start. So I decided just now after finding some pictures on my computer that I'd forgotten about. Instead of sharing someone I met face-to-face, however, I will begin with a dear friend whom I've NOT ever met in person*. Despite that, I consider him probably my next closest Arab friend after Samer.
Let me introduce you to LOUAI! Louai and Samer have known each other since their school days, and, in fact, Andrew and I saw their English teacher while we were walking near that school one day during our visit. Louai and I first started talking by exchanging messages on Facebook. This was the only picture of him on his profile page, and I had trouble sometimes thinking of him as a young man because this cute picture kept messing with my mind. Some days I felt bad for arguing with a little kid.
Thankfully, after a while I was able to see pictures of the grown Louai so I didn't feel so bad when we disagreed on things. Plus, I found out Louai is just plain cheeky! It's all good though. He calls me "evil Susieee." :-)
Louai and I have had quite a number of discussions over the past 16 months. He asks fun, interesting and sometimes challenging questions! We've discussed anything from English to the Trinity to cultural issues to how credit cards work! I have learned a lot about how Arab Muslims think and feel from him. He's always been good about answering me honestly.
Sometimes I tease Louai about his great big smile. It's something, isn't it?
And one final picture to share. I'm glad I found these pictures on my computer today. It's been great telling you about my cheeky, original Shami friend, Louai! By the way, Louai is an architect and, I believe, God will use him to do great things. If you think of him during your day, please say a prayer for Louai and the needs in his heart and life.
* I didn't get to meet Louai because he is working on a Damascene project in London at this time. However, he was so kind in sending one of his good friends, Mohammed, to meet with us and give us lovely maps of Old Damascus. Even from afar, Louai was trying to make our visit more wonderful. And he did.