I greeted him and introduced myself. I told him that I was from Africa too. Of course, I always try to connect and build relationships, so I look for something we may have in common, something that can help them open up and hopefully engage in meaningful conversation. So, I asked him how long he had been in the States, as I noticed that his English was quite good as compared to most refugees I meet. He told me that he was a Muslim from northern Sudan and that his name was Muhammad.
I talked to Muhammad about POBLO and the free programs we offer refugees, such as English, food and clothing, and sewing classes and citizenship classes for those in need. At our sewing classes, immigrants learn to sew their own cultural outfits and fix or alter some of their own clothes as they have need. Muhammad was impressed in hearing about these programs POBLO offers. So I told him he is welcome to participate in any of the programs, and that other immigrants he knows who might be interested should feel free to call me for more information about them. In the end, we exchanged phone numbers.
POBLO’s goal is to share Christ’s love with Muslims and other immigrants and refugees. An entry point for witness is the many loving services we offer which leads to sitting down with people to explain to them what Christ has done for all of us out of love. I took this opportunity to share with Muhammad the story of my life, how I was brought to Christian faith from Islam by the power of the Holy Spirit working through the Gospel. I spoke clearly about the great blessings that are mine through Christ, especially the assurance of salvation I received when I believed in Christ. One important point I shared with him that caught his attention is that Jesus Christ was the last One whom God sent for mankind. I quoted from Hebrews chapter 1 verses 1-4, that “after God spoke through His prophets in many and various ways, in these last days He has spoken to us by His Son, by whom He created the world. “ What I said and quoted from Hebrews about Jesus being God’s final revelation, and about Him being the Son by whom He created the world turned everything upside down in terms of what Muslims are taught (that God sent Muhammad as a prophet after Jesus, and that he is God’s final revelation). So, the contradiction became clear. Now, because of this very different story God allowed me to share with him, my new friend, Muhammad, requested that we get together to study and read from the Gospels, how they show that through Christ, God has given us everything we need for our salvation.
Please pray for more Muslims to have open minds and receptive hearts, and particularly for Muhammad that he will get to know the real Jesus and receive Him as his personal Savior. Let’s always keep in mind what is written in the Gospel of St John: “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free”. AMEN
-MIssionary Ebou Faye, Wisconsin