from Shane's Muslim Connect
I haven’t said this in too long: I really appreciate you reading Muslim Connect. Now, if you’ve been reading it for a while and occasionally say, “Quit telling me to meet Muslims! I live in the middle of a 50-mile-wide Muslim-free zone! There’s no one to meet,” I don’t blame you! My neighborhood here in Southern Colorado doesn’t exactly remind you much of Karachi, Mecca, or Dearborn.
So what can we do? There’s always the fallback, prayer. (You’re right: God does not see it that way!!) It’s possible that the very contribution God has designed you for is prayer. You can also wisely and winsomely advocate for better ways to think and talk about Muslims. You can help fund people involved in strategic ministry.
But if you actually want to have a Muslim friend, here’s an idea: international students. There are over 100,000 students currently in the US from Muslim-majority countries. (Tweet this.)
That means there are likely some at the school nearest me, which Google maps says is a cool 38 minutes away. I suspect there are some at the closest university to your home.
It’s still going to take some effort. . . and gas. And there are probably a dozen good things that will need to get deferred, but I think we could find Muslim friends among international students. I know from experience, although quite limited, that lasting relationships can be formed. I’m still in touch with a Saudi friend I met in Indiana somewhere around 2007!
If God’s nudging you, let’s do this. I’m personally feeling some leading in this direction. Check out this article, just published yesterday, for practical tips and pitfalls in initially connecting with international students. May God give us some friendships that are wonderful blessings all around.