A refugee woman asked, “Why are you doing this for me?”. The answer, “Because we love you.” She’s the second wife, relocated to a different shelter with the youngest kids. Isolated. Alone. We were walking in the rain, and she needed a coat and boots. Confused why we would even care about someone like her.
When ministries seem to stop because of social distancing and fear, we go before the Lord and ask what paths He is desiring us to take as a church to reach the immigrant community He placed in our backyard. The Middle East is closed to hearing the Good News, yet God has allowed such a population around our church, International Christian Fellowship, Oberursel, Germany, and we hope to be faithful in building relationships to share our hope and watch God’s Kingdom grow. As a church, we want to be wise stewards in protecting people in such a time, obeying governmental authority, and continuing the Great Commission God has commanded us.
Through this time of COVID-19, God has given us different boundary lines in how to fulfill His work. We had someone make more than 200 masks to distribute to refugees. Instead of our usual larger soccer camp, we did a smaller sports camp that allowed us to interact with the kids more and connect with their families better. We are additionally hosting a German course for immigrant women that provides free childcare from our church so that we can continue to assist these women in a small step of their integration in Germany.
But the part that is most exciting is that there have been several people from our church that have decided to take a step of faith and meet an immigrant family. In our context, people are often travelling and unable to invest in others due to families or jobs. But COVID-19 has allowed people to be here, see others’ needs, and become aware of the broken. And people are responding. We will have to continue to think of different ways to serve our community, but it is the Holy Spirit that is awakening the church to respond by walking with others like Jesus demonstrated to us. We may not be certain what the future brings or how long COVID-19 will last or when the next challenge will come, but we do know that our Father is always working. And why? No other reason than He loves His children.