Stories of Others on the Same Journey

Rob & Marlene Osborn

Rob & Marlene Osborn, working with internationals here at home

I attended the spring Finishers Forum conference at Hudson Community Chapel in Hudson, Ohio.  I am still in awe of how the Lord has put wonderful internationals into our lives right here at home after thinking we would have to go abroad for such richly diverse ministries.  Finishers Forum gave us the vision; God continues to give the opportunities. 

During one of the Bhutanese English Café table talks at Stow Alliance Fellowship, we were sharing the Easter story when one of the men (who had been in a refugee camp for 19 years in Nepal) looked at Rob and said, “This makes sense, there can’t be a lot of different gods.  There can only be one God.”  The discussion continued, and the gentleman went home with a New Testament in his language with the book of John marked for him to read. 

A large number of the Bhutanese youth attended our church’s spring retreat, and 12 gave their hearts to Jesus. It is exciting to watch our young people minister to the Bhutanese youth and see the Holy Spirit moving among these precious people.   

Kent State University continues to have one of the largest international student populations (over 1200), and working with them through International Friendship Connection has broadened our world view.  The Lord continues to open doors for friendship, good conversation and sharing of beliefs as we spend time with our three Chinese “daughters."  More families at SAF and other area churches will host newly arriving internationals (approximately 500 expected to arrive from China & India for fall semester). It’s an exciting time for kingdom work!

What is most rewarding is that God is using the skills Rob gained during his years of international travel and negotiations with people of diverse cultures.  He has a sense of the subtle cultural differences important for communication and is very comfortable interacting with groups of people who do not speak English.  My teaching skills combined with Rob’s abilities have made it possible for us to be English table talk leaders.  It's very challenging and rewarding. 

I am so thankful to Finishers Project for opening my eyes to “finishing strong” for the Lord.  It’s a whole different mindset that gives meaning and purpose to our retirement years.  Isn’t our God wonderful?  

In His service,

Marlene Osborn


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