Share God’s love with the people of Saudi Arabia. Seen globally as the birthplace and standard-bearer of Islam, over three million Muslims make the pilgrimage (Hajj) to Mecca every year from all over the world. The leading producer of oil and gas, and promoter of foreign investment, is surprisingly accessible to market-place workers. Recent governmental developments have opened up social and employment opportunities, as well as encouraging more tourist visa applications. Migrant workers and immigrants boost the national population by 38 per cent to almost 36 million people who call the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia home.
One man had seen a film that mentioned Jesus. “He had waited 11 years to ask a true believer in Jesus, rather than a Muslim,” Evan* explained. “By working alongside another professional, be it a doctor, a lawyer, or a teacher, he was able to grapple with understanding deep theological issues that had troubled him for so long.”
Share God’s love with people through professional skills: by working and making a difference by example. You can live out love by working alongside individuals, serving communities, bringing employment opportunities that lead to safer workplaces. Or training nationals to use their own skills to benefit their nation. In Saudi Arabia, there are opportunities to come alongside Jesus followers respectfully, acknowledge the variety of backgrounds and reveal the real personality of Jesus to others.
Ninety-two per cent of those living in Saudi Arabia are Muslim. The government permits people of other faiths to live in Saudi Arabia but not practise their religion openly. Although government officials turn a blind eye to small home gatherings of expatriate Christians, they do not permit public Christian gatherings. Numbers of those seeking answers to life’s questions are growing, although seeking sensitively to the majority faith. Expatriate believers can encourage through prayer and gentle exploration of faith. You can join prayer initiatives to support those living and working amongst the diverse population, with its extremes of wealth, personal autonomy and family networks. You can encourage hunger for relationship with the God of the universe. You can give practical support for the many marginalised communities.
For life is not easy for expatriates. The benefits of money made from working here are offset by social, personal and religious restrictions, often demanding working environments, and tolerances between different people groups. Let alone the extremely high temperatures in the summer challenging your physical endurance.
Yet international workers can live within what had once been considered an inaccessible nation, amongst those who have not yet met Jesus personally. You will always work to support local partners within the country, using your professional skills and personal faith to bless and empower the people of Saudi Arabia. Whether you come for a long, or short time, or whether you pray, or invest in lives through financial support, there are opportunities for you in Saudi Arabia.