God’s Children Are Anywhere, Everywhere

Look into one inner-city project and notice the simple encounters–the marketplace, the neighborhood, the street–where God has connected one of His searching children with someone who can love them for Him.

Khalil is a devout man who sells charcoal at his small shop nearby where I often buy from him.  We’ve become good friends.  He is committed to his faith, and in our conversations he has shared how he believes that Jesus will come  in the last days.  As we’ve  talked, he has accepted my offer to share the Bible with him.  Pray that I will share  what meets his heart’s greatest need.

Semil is a rickshaw driver from a minority tribe who has transported me at times.  Even though he is a university graduate, he can’t work his profession in our city.  I shared the good news about Jesus with him and gave him two Bibles in Arabic.  He believes that one day Jesus will come and put an end to the pain and misery of this life.  Please pray that God will give him more light,.

Tambal is a member of a political-military group in our country.  He is a lawyer by profession and lives in our region.  When I visited him in his office, I introduced myself to him as “the servant of the Injil.”  He stood up in respect to my duty and promised me that if we ever open a school in the name of our church, he would be the first to send his children to us, and to mobilize his friends to send their children as well.  He explained that he knows our church for its educational system.  Please pray that this leader’s hope will come true some day and we can open a small school in our region.

Bayram is the son of an imam who works in the ministry of religious affairs in our country.  This year Bayram experienced a deep movement in his spiritual life; he began questioning his religion.  He came to one of our friends and poured out his heart saying that he would never be the same again after meeting us.  He shared how he once  thought all of us would “die in hell.”  But then he observed we were much more devout than his own family.  He confessed that he had started reading the Bible we gave him and would like to start studying it with us.  He disclosed to us that he has had regular contact since childhood with “jinns,” the other-dimension creatures that some believe exist everywhere.  We recognize this as demonic activity and have been earnestly praying for him, even as we see him taking steps to be closer to our fellowship and to open himself to the  things of God.

A friend of ours working with us first met Esra in the fruit market.  As they got acquainted, she told him that 20 years ago she had been praying to Allah in her bedroom asking Him why there was so much suffering in her life.  While in prayer she felt a hand behind her back helping her to stand.  She was frightened, but when she turned to look at who it was, she saw a very kind face.  He said, “Don’t be afraid, you have been ‘found’ by Me. My name is Isa.”  Ever since she has been looking for a man named Isa.  

When we heard her story, a friend of ours told her that he and his  friends know Isa.  She came to me, “Please, can you show me His picture?  I miss his ‘comfortable’ look.”  As I began explaining, I was taken by surprise when she asked me if I had ever seen Isa personally.   I assured her that that’s my utmost wish.  Right there, she prayed for me, “Please, Isa, show yourself to this man.  He is willing to see Your picture.”  I was touched not only by her prayer, but by the privilege I realized we had right before us of introducing her to the living Lord Jesus.

Feda and her three children live in our neighborhood and have reached out to us for friendship.  Feda’s husband is addicted to drugs.  She has been beaten and abused by him.  Her life is hard.  As we got to know what she was experiencing, we helped her step out of such a life.  We connected her to a lawyer and located a shelter for abused women.  She has found relief from the trauma she has been experiencing,  We are so thankful that all four of them are studying the Bible now.  Our hearts are amazed as we watch her heal and grow.

Emin is a young man who was passing by our church one day and on impulse decided to enter.  He began to occasionally attend some of our weekday meetings and even Saturday worship. One day I asked him what brought him each time.  He said he had been so discouraged that he had wanted to end his life. He described, though, that the more he met with us the more he realized God loved him; he could feel His love from those around him.  He could feel peace. He knew was in a good place.   So he began attending regularly.  Recently I gave him a Bible as a gift and in our last visit together he agreed to begin Bible studies.  Praise God!