Data about how Muslims come to Christ should affect our thinking on immigration.
Naima* came to the United States from the Middle East with her family in the early 1990s. Though she was too young to remember most of the details, she distinctly remembers people from a local church welcoming her family of eight and helping them to get settled. Looking back on her early days in the US, Naima remembers that people from “the church … would bring us Christmas presents and all kinds of stuff. I have no idea how they connected with my family. I was not even five years old at the time. … [But] I remember them helping us with bills.”
After high school, Naima enrolled at the local community college, where she met Daniel, a fellow student. He became a good friend, listened to her struggles, and was always willing to talk about Jesus. At one point, he gave her a Bible and began reading to her out of the Book of John. Challenged by his faith, she brought him a Qur‛an and urged him to read it as well because she was convinced it was the truth—though she didn’t know much, if anything, about it. Evening study sessions often gave way to questions each had concerning the other’s Scripture. Some of the questions were pointed, the answers unsettling.
Naima and Daniel lost track of each other, but a few months later, Naima ended up in the hospital as a result of a drug overdose. There she met a janitor and a hospital transporter who, by their kindness and words of encouragement, demonstrated to Naima the love of Christ. After nearly two weeks, Naima was released from the hospital and reconnected with Daniel. She was excited to tell him all that she had learned and of the kindness of the Christians she met while in the hospital. When Daniel invited her to church, she gladly accepted. …
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