I travel much these days, prayerfully looking for how and where SIM might expand, and with whom we can partner as we do. This time I landed in the night, typically jetlagged and looking forward to a good night’s sleep. The flight in had produced a wonderful conversation with a former North African basketball star. He wanted to know about Christianity and how it differed from Islam. As we taxied into his city's airport he insisted on driving me to the hotel. Alas, so many of his family members came to greet him that there was no room for me in one of their vehicles. Undeterred he told me to wait while he found his friend who would take care of me. I was happy to use a taxi but he insisted.
Soon I got to know his friend. He was a businessman whose wife refused to move home with him, so he was returning alone on the same flight to the new home he had built for his family. The sadness was palpable but he also insisted upon driving me to my hotel. When we arrived we found that the hotel had overbooked. I had booked and paid for the room but the room had been shifted to another hotel. The problem was that nobody knew which hotel to direct me to. It was midnight.
With that development my new friend, Nassim, demanded that I stay in his beautiful home for the night. I was grateful but more than that I was intrigued to know what God was up to just then. We spent most of the next day together. He lit up when he learned I was interested in business. Soon he took me to his businesses and introduced me to his extended family. Over coffee he urged me to start up a business. "Foreigners are welcome and my country is open for business," he explained.
Suddenly I knew what God was doing. Through this saga He was teaching me that this country is not completely closed as many Christians in the west assume. During that week I learned from two other sources inside the growing church that opportunities exist for tentmakers and for entrepreneurs who want to do Missional Business. Ever since then I have been telling people to pray for this North African country. May God use His church to spread the Gospel in that place…and I pray for Nassim who needs Jesus and for his family. I know we will meet again.
The door is open and there are many opportunities.
Go to www.sim.ca/northafrica to enquire further.
We'd love to talk to you about these exciting opportunities!