On February 4th, Tom Brady will go for his sixth (Yes, SIXTH!) Super Bowl ring. This Sunday is one of the most culturally significant days of the year in the U.S. Sports fans and non-sports fans alike will gather in living rooms across the country to watch the big game (or the commercials!) between the Eagles and the Patriots. I will definitely be munching on Doritos and tuning in…
Four out of five college students from other countries go their entire college experience without ever being welcomed into the home of a local.
Chances are, though, that there is one group of people that will not be watching the game, at least not in a living room. According to studies, more than 80% of international students who come to the United States for college never set foot in the home of an American. Never. Four out of five college students from other countries go their entire college experience without ever being welcomed into the home of a local in the city or town in which they are attending school. Frankly, that’s ridiculous.
The Super Bowl represents a fantastic opportunity to push back against that ugly statistic. As you and your friends plan for the big party on Sunday and delegate who’s bringing the rotel, who’s bringing the buffalo chicken dip, and who’s got the Doritos (what is a Super Bowl party without Doritos?!) you should also consider inviting some international students to come over and share in the fun. I bet they’ll take you up on the offer.
If you don’t know any internationals, you should! But even if you don’t, I bet someone in your church does know some and would love to crash your party and bring along some of his or her friends.
Jesus said to go to all nations and make disciples, but truthfully, the nations are in our backyard!
Who knows what could happen from there... Perhaps your guests will be unfamiliar with American football and you can help them begin to learn the rules of the game. Or maybe they will have never tried Doritos (God forbid!) and you can be the one to introduce them to this manna from heaven. Or you might find out they have a deep love for both football and Doritos!
Parties are a great environment for getting to know people and casually building relationships. By the end of the night, you may’ve made a new friend, and this new friendship might just be divinely appointed. It could be God’s providential way of getting his good news to an unreached people group.
Jesus said to go to all nations and make disciples, but truthfully, the nations are in our backyard! For many of us, going to all nations is as simple as going across the street or to the university down the street. It’s as easy as inviting over some international students to your Super Bowl Party. And while you’re at it, go ahead and invite your neighbors, friends, and coworkers as well. Celebrations, holidays, and culturally significant rhythms are great opportunities to live missionally.
God loves parties! Jesus regularly attended them, and it could be that he shows up at yours on Sunday evening to begin introducing himself to some folks who've yet to meet him!
So as you plan for Sunday, make sure you have your bases covered for food and drinks, then intentionally think about who you’re going to invite over, and be sure it involves some friends who don’t yet know Jesus. Then take some time to pray for them, and for the party. I know that it might sound weird to pray over your Super Bowl Party, but God loves parties! Jesus regularly attended them, and it could be that he shows up at yours on Sunday evening to begin introducing himself to some folks who've yet to meet him!