| Never a better time|
The Middle East is home to some of the most unreached people groups, but there’s never been a better time for faithful Christians to live among them and share the good news of Jesus.
Five years ago, SIM merged with Middle East Christian Outreach and thanks to SIM’s network of sending offices, people from anywhere in the world are able to serve in the Middle East, alongside experienced colleagues who understand the needs of the region and its people.
The vision of SIM Middle East is to see the region transformed as lives are changed by the love of Christ through the message of the gospel – and its priority is to partner with Middle Eastern Christians as they minister to their neighbours with this message of hope.
SIM’s team in the region currently has members serving in six countries, but the goal is to expand ministries into several more countries in the region as they serve with others to bring good news to those living and dying without Christ. Stephen, who leads SIM’s work in the Middle East, says these are times of great opportunity: “We are witnessing unprecedented times.
“Many of our ministry partners say they’ve never known a time when so many people are asking questions and searching for truth. In one very closed context, a partner was overjoyed to report that more have come to Jesus during the Covid-19 season than at any prior time. The Lord is at work in remarkable ways!”
As elsewhere, the pandemic has prompted many churches and ministries in the Middle East to develop online outreach and discipleship tools. And because lockdowns have meant many in the region spend even more time online, these tools are being used to reach many.
One partner church recently ran online seminars to train 350 leaders in how to lead effective online discipleship groups. Technology will undoubtedly continue to move gospel work forward in the Middle East, explains Stephen. “We and our partners won’t be returning to what we thought was normal after Covid. There’s a determination to build on the digital strategies sharpened during the pandemic to share the gospel with nonbelievers, to unite believers and to grow the church in the Middle East.”
The region contains one of the approved Faithful Witness locations, offering a new opportunity to bring people “from every corner of the globe” to minister to those living without hope. “We want to build an intercultural team of up to 10 people to move to a new area to serve a neglected community, working with partners to reach people who for too long have been deprived of hope.”
Is God calling you to share the gospel in the Middle East?
Key areas of opportunity:
• Language learning
• Theological education
• Healthcare professions
• Development work
• Compassion ministries
• Business, professions
•For flexible and godly people to respond to the Lord’s call to serve in the Middle East.
• That believers in the Middle East will be bold in sensitively answering and discipling those who are seeking.
• For people in the Middle East to find hope, identity and security in Christ