I'm on a college tour with my daughter this week. One of the other dads grew up in Dearborn, Michigan, which has since become the center of Arab-American settlement in the United States. I observed this change in the demographics there. His response was interesting. He said that he's had many conversations with people who lamented the arrival of this community in their area. His response was twofold. First, he noted that without them, Dearborn would be greatly shrunken today. He even used the term "ghost town." Second, he said that the arrival of this primarily Muslim group has created ministry opportunities in his home state that used to exist only overseas.
I was struck again by the reality that great ministry opportunities often come wrapped in challenges. Sometimes we fail to see beyond the surface to that opportunity. What are you facing in your community that presents a challenge, but is also an opportunity for ministry?