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There's people from Syria, Iraq, Turkey, Bangladesh, Pakistan, the Philippines and India in my local park, what a great place to tell Bible stories

The park across the road from my house in Mount Druitt in western Sydney attracts people from all over the world.

I’ve met people from Syria, Iraq, Turkey, Bangladesh, Pakistan, the Philippines and India, to name a few. Most of these people are Muslim women and their children.

With the long evenings of daylight savings, many of these women are out and about with their kids in the early evening. There’s a network of Arabic women who meet every day from 6pm to 8pm. They have welcomed me into their little community and shared their food and snacks with me.

As a graduate of the Wycliffe Storying the Bible workshop, I have made use of this opportunity to share Jesus and Bible stories with my new friends.

With one woman – let’s call her Salena – who has eight children, I shared the story about Jesus calming the wind and the waves. I added the actions, such as Jesus sleeping on a cushion, the wind and the waves getting stronger and Jesus lifting up his arms and saying ‘Be still!’. Salena’s two daughters, who are in Years 1 and 2, said “Wow! That is such a cool story!”

They have invited me over to their house many times for Syrian meals and feasts and I have had many opportunities to have deep, ongoing conversations about Jesus with them.

The daughters then proceeded to re-tell the story to their mother in Arabic, who doesn’t speak English, even using the same actions I did. Praise God that his word went out in different tongues and languages that day!

To overcome the language barrier, I used the app 5Fish to show some resources to these Arabic women including the Magdalena Jesus Film in Arabic, which goes through the stories of the Bible.

I have had numerous other opportunities to share other Bible stories with these women, including Jairus’s daughter and the bleeding woman and Jesus healing the blind man. I then asked them what they learned about God and Jesus from these stories.

Two years ago I met a woman from the park who I’ll call Mahala. She lives with her seven children on the same street as me. Because Mahala doesn’t speak English well, she introduced me to her eldest daughter, who does speak English.

They have invited me over to their house many times for Syrian meals and feasts and I have had many opportunities to have deep, ongoing conversations about Jesus with them.

Over the years, I have tried to be a genuine and trustworthy friend to this family. Recently I had the opportunity to tell the eldest daughter about Jesus bringing Jairus’s daughter back from the dead and healing the bleeding woman’s story. She responded by saying, “this story is melting my heart.”

I then gave her an Injeel, Luke’s Gospel in her heart language of Arabic, and both she and her younger sister were keen to read it.

Thanks to the long evenings, many women from these communities hang out in parks like this all over cities across Australia.

What an encouragement that you can do this as well! The nations are at our doorstep, let’s go out into this harvest field together and share the saving and life giving message of the gospel with our friends in the park!

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Pray for opportunities like Iszy Pamatmat writes about here and that you can respond to them

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