Turkey: sharing faith on the bus
Operation Mobilisation workers in Turkey are finding fresh opportunities to reach people travelling by bus ...
OM International write:
"OM workers in Turkey generally don't own cars, preferring to use public transportation in order to maximise their time with people. Returning from the city centre by public bus gave Chris* the opportunity to make a new friend with the passenger sitting beside him.
"The two men exited at the same bus stop and exchanged phone numbers. A few days later, Chris called his new friend Osman* and they met at a café for tea. After their second meeting Chris invited Osman for a meal at his house.
"Osman is a university graduate and health officer. It became clear to him during his first ever visit to a non-Turk’s home that something was different: his hosts gave thanks to their God before eating and treated him, a Muslim, as a friend.
"At a later meeting Osman accepted the gift of a Bible and read it aloud immediately. His eyes widened, he said he’d found something so different from what he’d been taught in his family and school. Chris has a good contact now to share with on a deeper level.
"Buses also go between cities. Turkish buses have movies, Internet and serve tea and snacks. Mary* was waiting on the bus for the journey to a city east of Ankara to begin. Tülin*, a Turkish girl going to visit her relatives, was sitting in front of her.
"Tülin couldn't help but turn around and start bombarding Mary with questions. What was she knitting? Where was she from? How long had she been learning Turkish? Why did she come to Turkey? As Mary answered Tülin’s questions, she also shared how God had led her through her life.
"Tülin now had more questions: how long had it been since Mary converted to Islam? Mary replied that she hadn't, instead she has a living relationship with God because of Jesus Christ.
"But don't some Christians become Muslims, asked Tülin? Sure, replied Mary, people change religions sometimes.
"'But what I believe isn't religion, it is abundant life in Jesus,' Mary explained. 'My time is spent praising and enjoying his presence, rather than trying to work to reach Him.'
Tulin had to think about that ... she wanted to study to be a lawyer, which gave Mary the opportunity to discuss justice and mercy and the weight of sin before a Holy God, before their ways parted.
Please pray for God to continue to pursue Osman and Tülin with His love and for the gospel to go out on the highways and byways of Turkey.
* Names have been changed for safety reasons