Paul’s ministry – encourage and equip in addition to expanding.
My recent travels took me to places where the apostle Paul might also have set foot, and to people groups he might have encountered. In Acts we see him circling back two or three times through territory where he had first labored to expand the Kingdom, returning to encourage and equip the believers. Our team had those same purposes–expand, encourage and equip–along the Refugee Highway. We were greatly encouraged to see God both saving and sending refugees as laborers into the harvest.
Below is one story of many about a refugee who has come to faith and is now laboring for the gospel:
Yi* (name altered for protection) was an animist in a north African country. For a solid year he dreamed every night of light coming through a door. He was puzzled, because he’d never seen a door like that in his village–he lived in a hut with only a cloth covering a rounded opening. When he suffered the loss of his family and village in a genocide, he escaped to another part of his country and was given shelter by Christians. When they explained to Yi that Jesus is both the light and the door in his dreams, he gave his life to Christ. Now as a full-time laborer in mainland Europe, his ability to speak English, French, his native African language, and Arabic opens doors to tell God’s story to other refugees.