Recently, I was blessed to receive the following testimony from Allison, a student at Auburn University, who is part of a group that takes very seriously sharing faith in Christ:
The Auburn Baptist Campus Ministries (BCM) hosted an event for international students during the Fourth of July holiday. We had students from China, Turkey, Iran and Korea represented at the event. We broke off into small groups mixing American students and international students together to talk about why we celebrate this holiday. A lot of the conversations centered on freedom in America and why it was an important part of our history.
My group was discussing how religious freedom was one of the freedoms foundational to our country’s history. One of the international students asked why Christians want to tell others about what we believe, knowing that in many countries it can cause problems with people who choose to become Christians. We began to talk with the group about how our faith changed our lives and that telling others was what we had been called to do. We shared with them about the hope we have in Christ now and for all eternity and that the message of the Gospel was worth sharing in spite of the risk. We talked further about what Jesus did on the Cross and how because of that we can have a relationship with God.
Many of them wanted to know how Christians knew they were supposed to go share so we told him about the Holy Spirit who lives in the life of a believer and how He helps us share the Gospel. We also talked about how the Holy Spirit reminds us that we belong to God and that He lives with us daily, helping us understand God’s Word and our purpose as children of God. We told him about the Scriptures that say God loves all people and He wants to have a relationship with them. We shared with them that, ultimately, it was the calling of all believers to tell others about the salvation that we have in Jesus.
We discussed personal risk that Christians all over the world experience, because they follow Christ and that their circumstances are understood by Christ because He died on the Cross because of who He claimed to be, the Son of God. We explained that men and women all over the world share Christ at great risk, because the message is worth the difficulty and that wherever they are the Lord is with them.
Afterwards, they thanked us for answering so many of their questions and exchanged phone numbers with each of us. Our group loved being able to share with them the important message of Jesus and how it is life-transforming even at the risk of our lives. We have already made plans to get together again and continue talking with them about the Gospel.
God has brought so many international students to Auburn’s campus and through BCM has given us outlets to discuss the Gospel with people from all over the world. The internationals are easier to build relationships with than I ever would have expected. They are so open to discussing our culture and beliefs and to making friends with American students. It has been such a joy for me to be able to invest in the lives of internationals over the past year. I am looking forward to continuing to build even more relationships this coming year.
State Missionary Chris Mills is an associate in the Office of Collegiate & Student Ministries. He may be contacted at 1-800-264-1225, ext. 379, or (334) 613-2379, firstname.lastname@example.org.