In each of over a thousand interviews, Garrison asked what was it that God used to bring people to faith in Jesus Christ. A common thread revealed how they were “not persuaded by logical doctrine or a better civilization, but by [an] encounter with the living Son of God who changed their life and world.” Many were left “shaken and rattled” by this encounter where Jesus revealed himself to them. So often, Christians can “feel we take Jesus to people” says Garrison, but we “forget we’re attesting to a living Christ who continues to break into people’s lives, into their dreams, into their visions, and into their prayers.
Garrison estimates there is somewhere between 2 to 7 million people worldwide from Muslim backgrounds who now follow Christ. While this might be statistically insignificant in a world with 1.6 billion Muslims, it is extremely significant historically. Why? Primarily because it is unprecedented. Nothing like this has never happened before. If the trend continues, and let’s pray it does, it will one day become statistically significant and the world will begin to take notice.
All this is a huge encouragement for us in the midst of all that we face in the church here in Australia. While we may feel severely challenged Jesus continues to build his church and calls us to faithfully be involved with him in his mission. As Garrison reminds us, “Christ draws people to himself.
“The Holy Spirit will convict the world. That’s not the same thing as proclaiming the gospel to them. That is our role. But it’s nice to know that there’s an advance card out there bringing people to conviction. We’re not alone.”
Stephen L Baxter