In our second quarter of the year, our focus was to help people know the truth about who Christ is and how they can begin a new life with him. Included in this period was the fast month of Ramadan, in which Muslims say Muhammad began receiving the Qur’an from an angel. In contrast, we introduced Jesus, himself the Word of God, and the only one with power to save and justify.
During the months April to June 2017, our response team actively engaged with 2,204 Muslims with questions about Jesus and the Christian faith. A record 118 people professed a newfound faith in Jesus with one of our response team this quarter! Praise God! We were also able to disciple 3,927 men and women online and connect 62 individuals with a believer in their own country.
One to one
We believe that the most effective way to communicate the gospel is through personal interaction, engaging with individuals according to their own particular story. If you think back to your own experience, you will likely remember times when the Holy Spirit’s work in your heart came in a very personal way, at just the right time and in just the right way to make sense to you. In the same way, our response team needs your prayers for the Holy Spirit’s guidance on how to connect with each person, too. Here is a recent story of how God graciously connected with a lady from Iraq in a meaningful way…
Depressed in Iraq
Raja* first got in touch with us because she was depressed. She found our self-help video module on depression and took the step of contacting us through WhatsApp. Our responder listened to her story. Raja had married young, at 17, and had several children. Her husband provided for her, as well as for the children’s education, but their relationship was not close. She felt completely ignored and unloved. At this point, our response worker was prompted to encourage Raja to pray with him to ask Jesus to intervene and to help her husband to love her. At first, she couldn’t understand how they could pray together while she was in Iraq and he was in Egypt. He assured her that all she had to do was listen and agree in her heart as he prayed. He prayed boldly and beautifully for Raja and her husband.
Raja was very moved as she hung up the call. Soon, however, she was calling again. Her husband, who was travelling outside the country, had just phoned her, saying how much he missed her and how grateful he was to have her as his wife. In all their years together, her husband had never said anything like that to her!
‘Who are you?’ she asked our worker. He assured her it was not because of him, but because of Jesus that her prayer had been answered. Raja hesitated, and then began to doubt, thinking that perhaps it had just been a coincidence. Our responder asked her if she had ever prayed to her God, Allah, before about this. She said she had. He then asked if she had received an answer. She admitted that she had not. ‘So we see that it is Jesus who answers prayer.’ He then prayed for her again, that Jesus would reveal himself to her and show her that he is real.
The next day Raja called to say that she had had an amazing dream of Jesus. He had put his hand on her chest and her body had filled with warmth and light. And she felt so happy – all her depression had lifted. Our responder praised God and thanked Jesus that he had answered their prayer.
Not quite ready
Again Raja hesitated, wondering if it was just a coincidence. Again our responder asked her if she had prayed before to Allah and if he had answered her. She admitted that although she had prayed, she had not received such an answer. So our responder explained that as Jesus had answered her prayer and revealed himself to her, she now had to listen to him and follow him.
Raja is still pondering. Pray for the Holy Spirit to continue his work to change her heart and mind and to work in the heart and mind of her husband, too. We believe the Lord has many people from Iraq whom he wants to call to himself in these days.
*Name has been changed.