Friendship in the Refugee Crisis
Travis Brian, Worship Pastor at Utica Baptist Church in Seneca, had the opportunity to go on a mission trip to Athens, Greece, to work with refugees. While on the trip, he met Majed, a refugee from Iran, who was learning at the center each day.
Travis and Majed had the privilege of sharing their stories about how they came to know Jesus. Majed shared his life-changing experience of how the Lord spoke to him in a dream while his family was moving from Iran to Greece. “And he had this vision, and he heard a voice calling out. And he said, ‘Who are you? Who are you? Are you the God of Mohammed? Are you the God of Jesus? Who are you?’ And the voice said, ‘I’ll tell you when you get here.'”
The first thing Majed received upon arrival at the refugee camp was a copy of the Gospel of John, which he immediately started reading. A couple of days later, a missionary came to him and told him who this God is. Travis was moved by Majed’s story and hearing how God revealed Himself to Majed.
Travis admitted that he had a misconception about Muslim people instilled in him after 9/11. However, through his conversation with Majed, he realized that they were not so different. “Majed was the same age as me. He’s 29,” he said. “I was just thinking, ‘Man, he and I could be friends.’ Majed shared a lot of details about his life growing up, and it was just so eye-opening to realize what our friends around the world go through.” Travis felt he was transformed because of a friend like Majed.
Travis’s experience working with refugees in Greece also served as a reminder that we are called to love and serve all people, no matter their race or ethnicity, and to share the good news of Jesus Christ with them. Through Majed’s story, Travis saw how God can reveal himself to anyone, regardless of their background or culture. As it says in Revelation 7:9, “After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb.”