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Coffee with strangers

A digital evangelist's story

What happens when a freezing digital evangelist gets coffee with strangers in another country? The gospel finds its way to those who otherwise might never have heard it.

For more than a decade, OneWay’s Sparrow* has been a digital evangelist, connecting internet seekers in the Middle East with local believers who can help them take next steps with God.

Years ago, Sparrow worked with partners to create a digital Bible for a specific unreached people group. This innovative tool would be easy to carry in large quantities and give away on the streets. Eager for more international experience, Sparrow asked his partners if he could help take those digital Bibles to the streets of Central Asia*. 

Eight years later, the annual trip is a highlight of his ministry. His target audience lives in a nation where owning a Bible is outlawed, but undeterred, Sparrow and his coworkers head to a nearby country where thousands from this particular people group converge for their annual vacation.  

“There are people who are curious and hungry for the gospel,” said Sparrow. “Until I asked, I didn’t know that they were really open to hearing about it.”

One particularly cold night, eager to get out of the cold, Sparrow and his team asked a group of these tourists to get coffee with them. The group was taken by surprise, mostly because they had never talked to Americans before.

“It's very interesting for these people to meet Americans for the first time in their lives,” said Sparrow. “They go to great lengths to tell me we can be friends even though our governments are enemies.” 

Sparrow ended up having coffee with a medical student and her boyfriend. The student grew up in their nation’s majority religion, but the injustice and torture she saw caused her to give up her belief in a higher power. She shared with Sparrow that she had never met Christians who were kind and loving to her. 

“She asked lots of questions about Christianity,” said Sparrow. “We talked about how Jesus Christ suffered with us and for us to save us from our sins and reunite us with God.”

At the end of their conversation, Sparrow challenged her to pick a prayer request that they could pray for together. He asked her to choose something so big that if God said yes to it, she would know that he had answered and that he was real.

“When we prayed together,” Sparrow said, “she was surprised at how our prayers sounded like a conversation between a child and a father instead of a religious ritual. She said that it felt so good to pray with us.”

In addition to distributing many digital Bibles, the team saw dozens of people profess faith in Christ during the outreach. Pray that these new believers will grow into strong disciples in their own nation. Pray that they will help spread the gospel throughout their country. 

*Name and location changed for security

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