International Students: A Bridge to the Nations!

September is here and school is back in session. There are literally thousands of international students who have arrived to our college and university campuses. Among them are Muslims from many different nations—like Saudi Arabia, Iran, Turkey, Kuwait, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Pakistan.

God has given us the opportunity to meet, befriend, and share our faith in Christ with a Muslim student in our own town. These international students come from many nations that we would never be able to access with ease. In fact, many of these Muslim students are coming from cities where they most likely have never encountered a Christian!

Although statistics indicate a slight decrease over the last couple of years, over 1 million international students come to the United States each year! Over the years, Global Initiative has had the privilege of a continuing partnership with Chi Alpha campus ministries.

Earlier this year we had the opportunity to provide training to Chi Alpha students on the campuses of Radford University and Virginia Tech. During this training, students learn ways to effectively reach Muslim students with the Good News of Jesus. At times, the trainings include a visit to the local mosque so the students can personally interact with Muslims. Our trainings always challenge the Chi Alpha student leaders to be open to the Spirit’s call to take the gospel to Muslims.
The Chi Alpha training events equip students to immediately begin sharing the gospel with Muslims on their university campus. They also encourage Chi Alpha students to participate in short-term missions trips to Muslims countries. In turn, many of these students respond to God’s call to full-time missionary service and become Assemblies of God appointed missionaries.

Although Chi Alpha students have an extraordinary opportunity to reach Muslim students, the local church also has many open doors for outreach to international students. Many university campuses have International Student Friends programs. Everything is new for these students and many of them have never met an American family. When we, as believers, open our homes and our hearts to demonstrate true Christ-like hospitality, God can use us to plant the seed of the gospel in their hearts.

As we reach out, it is amazing how the Holy Spirit not only gives us natural opportunities to share about life, but also to share about our faith in Jesus Christ. You will find that most Muslims willingly discuss matters pertaining to faith.

International students need help with cultural adjustments that we can meet. For instance, many of them do not have a vehicle and are not comfortable getting around the city. Some are interested in sightseeing, shopping, or trying new foods. Most students are interested in improving their English speaking skills.

Right here in Springfield, through a local church, Say Hellois conducting a weekly English Club for Saudi families who attend local universities. This has created an effective way to build relationships and share faith with Muslim students.

This Fall, join us in prayer for international students throughout the United States. Pray for Chi Alpha students as they connect with Muslim students on their campuses and share their faith in Jesus Christ. Pray for local churches to connect with International Students through their local universities. The world has come to our doorstep. We simply need to build a bridge whereby we can share the Good News of Jesus with our Muslim neighbors! 

The entire team at Global Initiative is grateful for your faithful financial commitment and prayer, as we walk through the doors God continues to open for us! Our joint efforts, whether in a far off country or in a university in an American city, are making an eternal difference in the lives of Muslim people who have never had the opportunity to hear the Good News of Jesus Christ.

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