I nervously drummed a pen against the table as I scanned the library for my Afghan students.
Class was supposed to begin at 9:30; it was already 9:43 and I had reserved our study room for only an hour. Working among different cultures has helped me realize their ‘time’ and our ‘time’ may operate differently, but this Saturday morning English Class was different; I was going to share my testimony with my Muslim friends.
This English class began almost a year ago, after I met a Japanese woman named Yoko who wanted to reach out to the international and refugee communities of the West End in Richmond. I began teaching an informal English and Conversation class Saturdays mornings at a local library. A handful of Afghan adults came fairly regularly, including A* and his wife R*, a sweet and outgoing couple with three energetic daughters. Their higher level of English allowed us to quickly connect and have conversations beyond the superficial.
For 2-3 months I had been incorporating short Bible verses into class time. The students would write them down, and we would have brief discussion on the meaning of the words or verse. During one class, R* shared that whenever she read the verses at home, she felt peace! This unexpected testimony thrilled me and I began to look for more opportunities to intentionally share the message of Jesus and the gospel. With Easter the day after the next class, I found an opportunity.
While Bible verses had been well-received by my Muslim students, I was unsure how to give a gospel presentation. As I prayed and planned for the lesson, the Lord clearly directed me to share my testimony paralleled to the verse “Jesus answered, ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’” (John 14:6)
Sitting in the library study room, I looked at the time and wondered if anyone would show up. Just then, R*’s smiling face peaked around the wall as she and her husband came in. After greeting each other and asking how they had been, R* starting copying down the verse from John 14:6.
“This weekend is very important to me,” I told them, “I want to share my story with you.”
I explained how Jesus had shown himself to be the Way, the Truth, and the Life in my own life, concluding with how Jesus is the way to the Father. A* and R* nodded along, and thanked me for sharing. There wasn’t much immediate discussion, but I am glad for the trust and friendship that existed between three people from such different cultures. I am grateful that God pushed me through my fear to share His truth.
Often the fruit and results are slow to be seen by our eyes, but I can confidently trust Jesus is making a way in their lives to reveal Himself as their True Savior.