Welcoming the Stranger



As we love our new neighbors and share life and Truth with them, we may have the privilege of seeing them come to a saving faith in Christ. This is cause for celebration, but it is not the end of the journey. This world is new to them—both the country and the new-found life in Christ. Our friendship continues as we grow together.

As Christians, we are called to be transformed more and more into the image of Christ. In Matthew 28:19, we are also instructed to “make disciples of all nations…teaching them to observe all that Christ has commanded us.” While discipleship will take place in the context of formal meetings, it also takes place on the streets and in the homes. People learn and grow through real experiences. Jesus spent time with his disciples. They traveled together. They ate meals and served others together. He was available to them.

We too need to be available to those who have come to Christ to help answer questions and struggles and maybe work through incorrect assumptions. We may not have all the answers, and we may have our own set of issues, but we can share what knowledge we have. We can share our experiences and turn to God, the Bible, and other mature Christians. 

This can be especially true when we are contemplating cultural issues. There may be traditional ethnic ideas that need to be worked through. On the other hand, you may have to rethink some of your deep-seated notions. Are you coming from a place of truth and grace, or are you allowing your background to influence you in a way that may not be biblically based? 

Ultimately, we desire to see people rooted in Scripture, growing in grace, dependent on prayer, living in community, proclaiming the gospel, and serving others. These are all things that can be done in fellowship together. Walking along side another believer, being an example and a friend they can bounce ideas off is far more fruitful than merely telling them what to do. Being a part of God’s great plan is a privilege and an honor and may provide you with incredible friendships you never imagined.

Today we thank God for the many refugees who have found Christ in their new homelands.

And we pray that we would be faithful to serve, evangelize, and make reproducing disciples of those whom Christ has brought into our lives.