A Traveling Testimony

Every major U.S. military headquarters has a mission to engage with military leaders from other nations. When units are stationed OCONUS (Outside the Continental United States), American units commonly have a connection with a sister unit from the host nation. In addition to the formal military and political discussions between the organizations, informal exchanges and sharing take place covering social customs, sports—and religion.

Paul, Barnabas, and a team journeyed to Cyprus, an island a bit smaller than Connecticut. In the city of Paphos they met Sergius Paulus, the Roman official over the province. The Scripture states that he was an intelligent man and wanted to hear Paul and Barnabas talk about the Word of God.

We have lived in a few places where my husband had the opportunity to talk about faith with other military personnel. During one foreign exchange training exercise, a Muslim officer sought out my husband at a social outing and spent several hours in discussion about my husband’s faith in Christ. One neighbor in Germany declared herself an agnostic, yet she had many questions about my faith and gave me the opportunity to share my story. In Korea I had many invitations to talk with Korean women, most of whom were Buddhists, about American culture, which, for me, included my faith in Christ. Each assignment holds unique opportunities to share your faith—not in what is called cold-turkey Bible-banging, but in conversation with those, like Serguis Paulus, who have a genuine interest in the faith they see in you.

We don’t know the degree of Sergius Paulus’s belief. Likewise, we may never know the level of our life’s influence on others, but we can be confident that the Spirit can use our words and testimony to facilitate an eternal change in someone’s life.

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