I met Hoa in Vietnam during our time volunteering at the cafe. We hit it off very quickly and she offered to take me all around on her motorbike to sight see and share about the life and culture of Ho Chi Minh City. During one of our conversations she asked me if I believed that there was a God.
This question was an amazing opening to many conversations on religion, worshiping God as opposed to idol worship, and the purpose of our lives.
It seemed that every time we got together she has more questions and was more curious about having a relationship with God.
One of the times we were shopping together and she pointed to a statue of Jesus “You like him, right?” she asked me. I told her yes, but that I don’t need a statue of Jesus to prove my faith or worship him. She told me she wanted to hear more about my God and asked me to share my testimony.
I was able to share openly about how God changed my life to a girl who had never learned anything about Christianity or about how much God loves her.
The last day we got to hang out, she took me to a coffee shop in another district. While we were sitting I was humming along to the song on the radio. She looked very surprised “You know this same song in English?”
“No,” I responded. “It’s just an easy tune to pick up on!”
She told me, “That is funny you should pick this song to sing along to. It is a song about God. The lyrics are about God’s unconditional love for his people, how he gives us happiness and joy and that he created everything that is beautiful: people, nature…” Basically, not a song one would often hear in the country of Vietnam. I told her that I felt really strongly that God wanted to tell her that this was a divine appointment, that God wants her to know him very much.
I explained to her the freedom and fullness that God wants to give our lives and for us to enjoy.
She responded by saying she was very interested in the God I believe in. I told her how much joy that brought me and that I could connect her with a wonderful discipleship leader from the cafe. They would love to tell her more about God and teach her about Christianity if she wanted to learn more after I left. She was very open and excited to learn more about God and also asked where she could find more of my music, like the song on the radio, but in English.
I leave Vietnam with confidence that she is hungry and excited to get to know God and what it means to live in a relationship with him rather than follow the rules of a religion.
This is one of the many examples we’ve seen of how building relationships and really caring about individuals can speak volumes about what it means to love God, even in a country where we aren’t able to speak of him freely.