There are greatly contrasting views of what is going on in Europe these days. Many see the influx of refugees as the precursor for the slow decline of Europe. The result of well-intentioned, but naive nations that have forfeited their safety and security for kindness and compassion to refugees who have plans to rewrite the stronghold of Europe with their eastern ideals.
Many of the concerns are well-founded. After recent terrorist attacks, Europe has realized the implications of vast numbers of refugees entering their borders. With so many problems arising in Europe, how can we not look at what is going on there as anything but a crisis?
This year we celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. The Reformation is a good teacher in this respect. In fact without Islam we might not have had the Reformation. Yes, while Luther was nailing his 95 theses to the church door in Wittenberg, the invasion of the Ottoman Turks was distracting the princes of Europe from focusing on Luther's movement, allowing him to build a new church on his five solas. By the time the aristocracy in Europe realized what was happening, it was too late for them to snuff out the truth that Luther had rooted in the continent.
We forget that God's plan is not our plan. Through this lens we once again see Europe as being invaded by Muslim people, but something incredible is happening in Europe. Muslims are coming to Christ. Not just a sprinkling here and there, but vast numbers are turning to Christ and through these people searching for hope and new life, they are finding it and reviving the church in Europe at the same time.
This is our opportunity to see an awakening of the gospel in a place that has been dead for too long. Many times our greatest fears create the greatest opportunities. Christ turns our greatest tragedies into His greatest glory. He did it 2000 years ago on a cross and He is still doing it today. Will you recognize the opportunity in front of you?