Rachel Wells, Cru
This month I’m sharing with you about the trip I took with our USC Cru staff team to the Middle East three weeks ago. Our movement here at USC has a partnership location in the Middle East, which is where we visited. We are committed to praying for the campus ministry and to sending laborers there from our movement (both summer missions and year long missions).
It’s a relatively new partnership for us and we realized last semester that no one on our staff team had even been to that country! Well, in March we got to remedy that with a week-long vision trip in which we got to experience the culture and gain vision for the ministry that is happening there.
More details below, but needless to say I came back SO EXCITED about our partnership! I hope and pray that you are excited after reading more, too. 🙂
FUN, FALAFELS, AND NEW FRIENDS IN THE MIDDLE EAST
“There are so many students who want to meet up and be our friend and have deep conversations, but we just don’t have enough time to meet with them all. We don’t have enough people here to meet with everyone who is interested.”
From day one in the Middle East, my heart was won over for these people, but this statement really drove home the need in the country. My staff team and I just got back from a week long vision trip to our partnership location in the Middle East. During our week we were able to test the country’s delicious food, learn the art of hailing a cab driver, meet with local staff, and even got to visit the main university to make friends and have spiritual conversations.
The quote above was a simple, offhanded comment made by one of the STINTers there (people doing a one year international mission with Cru), but it is so characteristic of the culture and the need in this area. People in this country are so hospitable (they will invite you to dinner with their family during your first conversation!) and students at the university are especially excited to make friends with Westerners. There has also been unprecedented spiritual openness among Muslims in the area recently. This is mainly due to all of the radical terrorist groups in the news who claim to be acting in the name of Islam— people are beginning to think critically about this religion that is so intimately connected to their national identity.
These are just a couple of the reasons I am excited to go back to this area in May with our summer mission team of students! Another reason is Sarah. She’s my new friend that I met at the university. Within five minutes of meeting her, she was already teaching us Arabic words to help us learn more about the culture. I met her during my last day on campus there, but when we ended our conversation she asked if we could meet up when I come back to the country. I hope to connect with her again in May.
My trip back to the Middle East May 16 – June 8 on a summer mission with Cru students. Pray for my colluder Mario & I as we plan. Pray for the 3 girl students I will be pouring into. Pray for prepared hearts among nationals to hear the Gospel!
The senior girls I lead here at USC: Sarah, Bri, Greta, & Tyler. They graduated in a month! Pray for prepared hearts for the transition ahead, for a zeal to continue following Christ after college, for opportunities to share Jesus with future coworkers.