Trusted Ambassadors In The Middle East

Trusted Ambassadors In The Middle East

May 6, 2021
A Browncroft Friend Abroad

(This reflection comes from a Browncroft global outreach partner living in the Middle East. For privacy and safety all names have been changed. But the story is real!)

The invitation came in a text message from Sami.

“Joseph, would you and Grace please come to visit us tonight?”

Usually it was Mira, his wife, who would ask me (Grace) to visit and talk over some strong Arabic coffee. An invitation from her husband suggested a more serious need.

Sami and Mira are our Muslim friends, but they feel more like family to us. We have had many visits together and have often described our relationship with God. We openly share our confidence in God’s love and goodness in our lives because we have been reconciled with God through Jesus.

This time, Sami seemed distraught. He holds an important government position and feels a heavy weight of responsibility for his family and his country. COVID is rampant. The economy is crumbling. And he fears for the future of his young sons.

He needed hope… so he called us. And we went to visit them.

As we listened to Sami share his fears and concerns, I could feel the darkness of despair closing in. As usual, I was quietly praying as we listened. I prayed for spiritual ears to hear and for words of comfort to share.

All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us.

2 Corinthians 5:18-20 (ESV)

Sami and Mira have heard some of our stories of God’s faithfulness in difficult times. But, this time, I shared how God gives us joy during our sufferings.

I said, “No matter what is happening, God’s comfort and joy are always available to me. When I suffer, I run to God… every time. And, every time, he comforts me, and I am filled with his joy.”

I told them that if God were to call me that day to spend eternity with him, I would gladly go.

“Never!” Mira cried, “May you have a thousand more years of life!”

“But, Mira, why would I want a thousand more years of suffering when I can have eternal joy in the presence of my God? I am not saying that I wish to die but that I wish to be as close to God as possible.”

Sami was deep in thought… and then said,

“I know why we do not have joy. We are not close to God.”

They are not (yet) reconciled with God through Christ. But we have the message of reconciliation, and God has sent us as his ambassadors, making his appeal through us.

This message has been entrusted to us to be shared. And so, we live in a land where there are far too few ambassadors to share this joyous message of reconciliation.

Photo by Keith Fox on Unsplash

About The Author

A Browncroft Friend Abroad

From its inception, Browncroft has been a church with a deep outreach focus. We as a congregation engage deeply in world outreach through our partners around the globe. We love that God has extended our reach to over 40 countries. The majority of our partners work with least-reached people groups, Bible translation, church leadership training, and students.

Further reading

You’re Invited to Summer Nights!

As a church, we want to create space to connect with each other during the summer. Instead of replicating the activities we do during the rest of the year, our intention is to provide space for community and reflection. This summer we are trying something brand new called “Browncroft Summer Nights."
Read more

Embracing Summer Sundays: Serving the Next Generation

Summer Serve is a golden opportunity for our church community to engage with the next generation in meaningful ways. By investing time and energy into serving kids, we plant seeds of faith and grow personally as disciples of Christ. Consider signing up to serve at least one Sunday this summer!
Read more

Jesus Culture: Restoring the World Through Ordinary Life

The Church of Jesus is called to be light in a dark world—a world that has always been at odds with the kingdom of God. We are called not simply to defend our faith, but to bring it to life in our homes, schools, workplaces, and communities. Over the month of June, we will be discussing practical ways that we can do this in our everyday lives.
Read more