Raewyn had always been looking for gospel opportunities at the weekly ESOL class she volunteers with at her church. In fact, that was her primary motivation for helping there in the first place. But as the weeks flew by, serving morning tea and talking with students from around the world, she began to wonder if she was achieving her initial goal of sharing the gospel with them. She had hoped God would provide a connection with one of the students, but she was finding it difficult to develop any sort of deeper relationship with any of them because she was meeting so many new students every week.
One Sunday, Raewyn saw one of the ESOL students, Jailu, at her church. To her surprise, Jailu walked straight up to her and asked “Is this your church? I’m not a Christian but my son and daughter-in-law are.” Raewyn was shocked. Sure, she was hoping to eventually invite one of her ESOL students to church, but she didn’t expect one to randomly turn up and walk straight up to her to kick off a conversation about Christianity!
“I never expected in a million years that she would come to me!”
Since then, Raewyn deliberately looked for Jailu at ESOL to get to know her better and God continued to direct these two women to one another. Over time Raewyn found out that Jailu was really keen to learn English so that she could talk to her grandchildren and that she had seen them reading through a picture Bible. After a few weeks, Raewyn asked Jailu if she would be interested in meeting one on one, to which Jailu said “Yes!”
Raewyn was excited to see what God was doing in her friendship with Jailu, but now she had to figure out what would be her best next step. She knew Jailu’s priority was to learn English, so she needed to find something that could help Jialu with this goal, while also opening up space in their conversations to talk about the gospel. Initially Raewyn asked Amy (her mandarin-speaking friend from church) to join them but she was unable to make it. Then Raewyn started talking to Amy’s husband Karl, and learned how she could use the Jesus Film app.
The next day Raewyn and Jailu watched the first part of the Jesus Film in Mandarin. Jailu took notes on the creation story, and afterwards Raewyn asked Jailu to re-tell the story to her as best she could in English. At the end of the clip, it briefly introduced Jesus, the one who would fix the broken relationship between God and His creation. Jailu had not heard much of the story before, and when Raewyn asked if she would like to continue going through the film, Jailu said yes she was. They decided to meet again some weeks later, and Jialu has continued to attend Raewyn’s church.
Isn’t this exciting? Somehow, in one woman’s desire to learn English to communicate with her grandchildren, God has entangled an opportunity to draw her to Himself. He placed regular people like Raewyn and her church family, in Jailu’s life who are simply prayerful and willing to see more people join His kingdom. Let’s praise God for His work, asking Him to keep Jailu interested in hearing the gospel and that He would help us also to be praying for mission opportunities with our church families too.
The Jesus Film App is a great way to reach out and start conversations with those around us who may be interested in learning more about Jesus. With over 200 (free!) videos in 1400+ languages, you’re bound to find something to watch and discuss together. It’s as simple as saying ‘Hey, would you like to watch this video and tell me what you think?’ You can use it too!