Nabil Costa of Lebanon Visits DBU

Nabil Costa shared with DBU students, faculty, and staff of God's work in the Middle East in chapel
Nabil Costa shared with DBU students, faculty, and staff of God's work in the Middle East in chapel

Nabil Costa, Executive Director for the Lebanese Society for Educational and Social Development (LSESD), visited DBU this week and spoke to students in chapel on Wednesday, as well as to the faculty and staff during a special luncheon.

During his message, Costa spoke of the current state of the Middle East, particularly in his home country of Lebanon. He explained that Lebanon is a beautiful place, and most of its people are passionate about seeking peace. He went on to say that Lebanon is one of the few countries in the area with the ability to worship freely, and many of the Muslims in the area support the Christian minority in this freedom.

In addition, Costa shared about the high reputation that Christian schools hold in the area, furthering the positive relations between different groups and making a great impact in the region."I am here to tell you that God is at work in the Middle East," Costa noted.

He continued by explaining that culturally, people in the Middle East often see religion as their identity. Unfortunately, this deep sense of identity can become problematic, particularly when it becomes exclusive and targeted against others. The resulting extremism, he explained, is the force behind the situations that currently dominate news across the world. These views, however, do not accurately reflect the beliefs of most in the area, especially when considering the continued presence of Christianity in the region since the days of the Early Church.

"The majority of people in Lebanon, including Muslims, recognize and appreciate the history of Christianity in this area, as Christianity began in the Middle East and should continue to exist here," he shared.

After discussing the situations taking place in the Middle East and Lebanon, Costa offered a call to action to students, faculty, and staff. He provided principles that he stated were critical to sharing Christ in this area, including a reminder that God is in control and that we are tools in His hand to be used for His plan and His glory. He encouraged the audience in the importance of being used by God wherever He places them and told of what this concept means to him and his community.

"For years we prayed for our neighbors, and we now we have a fourth of our population made up of Syrian refugees." He explained that the increase of people from a region and religion often considered hostile toward Christianity has created a unique platform to minister in special ways.

"Now is the time to go to work for the kingdom," he stated, "and we must start by loving people."

Costa holds a Bachelor of Arts in business administration and economics from the American University of Beirut and a Master of Arts in education and counseling from the Haigazian University in Beirut. He formerly served as Vice President for the Baptist World Alliance representing the Middle East and continues his involvement with the BWA in various ways. Costa has served as Executive Director for LSESD since 1998, and under his direction partnered with Middle East Bible Outreach (MEBO), an equipping agency that addresses educational and social issues across the Arab world. Nabil and his wife, Lena, have been married for 34 years and have two sons, Nicholas and Christopher. The Costa family currently resides in Mansourieh, Lebanon, and are members of Badaro Baptist Church in Beirut.

More information regarding the Lebanese Society for Educational and Social Development can be found at www.lsesd.org.

Written by Courtney Hackett

Courtney Hackett (Smith) served as the Assistant to the Vice President for Communications in the University Communications division at DBU.

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