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Open Doors in the Market

Posted by Renee , in Middle East, Orality 10 December 2012 · 1493 views

With my friend, Amal, a seamstress, topics of conversation easily turn to God. She is a devout follower of Allah. She has verses from the Quran posted all over the walls of her humble shop, and this time when I came to visit, she had praise music (praise to Allah) playing in the background.

Amal's friend of many years, who is also very religious, was there with a small alteration for a dress for her son's engagement. Mostly she was there to talk, and she was excitedly telling Amal about the religion classes she'd been attending recently.

Amal's friend asked me about religion. I told her that I am not interested in religion but in pleasing God. I asked if I could share a story with them. I thought and prayed a moment and selected one of the three Scripture stories that I now know in their heart language.

In just a couple minutes I told them the story of the Pharisee and the tax collector praying at the temple from Luke 18. As I asked some questions about the story, both Amal and her friend quickly spotted the pride so evident in the Pharisee and noted that God requires humility.

Referring to Jesus' words in the story, I commented, "It's interesting that Jesus said, 'I tell you with certainty that this one (the tax collector) went home that day made right with God.' Do you believe it's possible to know for certain that you are right with God?" I asked. Jesus' words in the story opened the door for me to then share that I do know for certain that I've been made right with God.

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An oral learner is:


Someone whose most effective communication and learning format, style, or method is in accordance with oral formats, as contrasted to literate formats.
Someone who prefers to learn or process information by oral rather than written means. (These are literate people whose preferred communication style is oral rather than literate, even though they can read.)
Someone who cannot read or write (this represents about 5% of the world's population).

Did you know?


There are an estimated 4.35 billion people who are oral learners. This includes 3 billion adults, 900 million very young children, and 450 million children between the ages of eight and fifteen; all of these have basic or below basic literacy skills. They are oral learners because of their limited literacy skills.
The vast majority of missions work has been done for a literate audience. Unfortunately the vast majority of the true audience is therefore not able to connect with the Gospel.
Oral cultures are very relational - they share their lives with one another.
Most oral cultures will communicate with one another in narratives, dialogues and dramas, proverbs, songs, chants, and poetry. When asked what he thought about a new village school headmaster, a Central African replied "Let's watch how he dances".

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