Riding the Bus: A Story from the Afghan Initiative

How riding the bus around town to meet other Afghans leads to gospel conversations two hours away: Story from the Afghan Initiative

Ilyas rides the local bus around town to meet other Afghans on their way to work.

They connect over being Afghans, how they got to the U.S., what they went through escaping Afghanistan, and their resettlement here. Finally, they ask each other, “What are you doing for work?” Ilyas responds, “I am a Christian pastor to the Afghan people.”

From there, Ilyas launches into a Gospel conversation.

When the bus ride is over, Ilyas gives the Afghan he met a business card with his information on it so he can reach back out to learn more about Jesus. One of those business cards has had a long journey.

A 2-Hour Journey for Jesus

Somehow, one of Ilyas’s business cards was passed along from person to person until it reached a disabled Afghan man in a city over two hours away from where Ilyas lives and rides the bus. Since that man contacted Ilyas, Ilyas has been driving the distance to share the love and truth of Jesus. When Ilyas found out the man was having a hard time finding food, Ilyas also brought along homemade Afghan bread his wife made.

A Pastoral Connection

A local pastor in that city two hours away knew of the Afghan Initiative and now is part of the story. When he overheard Ilyas and the disabled man talking, he couldn’t help but join the conversation! The pastor learned of the man’s need for food and his church immediately stepped up to care for the man through the church’s food bank.

Jesus’ Love Is Loud

When Ilyas attended a ministry event in his own city, an Afghan woman approached him and asked if he was the man serving the disabled Afghan man in the city two hours away. It turns out the disabled Afghan man had been sharing what he had learned about Jesus from Ilyas. He even connected the Afghan woman with Ilyas to learn more.

The woman said, “I have heard your name and who you have been teaching about, but now I have a picture of your face too and I am excited to learn more.”