Questions about Islam, dreams and visions, paths crossing with Christians—these are only a small number of similarities shared in the stories of our persecuted brothers and sisters. Many times a persecuted believer recounts that they had many questions about their faith, about God, about other faiths, and their religious leaders could not answer. Their curiosity was met with rebuke and anger.
Sometimes, we hear that a persecuted believer’s questions were followed by dreams that brought them comfort and confidence in who Jesus was as they sought the Truth.
Seeking Answers, Finding Rebuke
Growing up in Syria, Amjad learned the basics of the Muslim faith, but he was never much of a religious person. He had questions about some of the teachings of Islam, but when he asked his questions, he was met with anger and accusation rather than the answers he sought. For example, he wondered aloud why the blessing given upon the prophet Muhammad in the Quran made him sound greater than God Himself. For that, he was labeled an infidel.
After his own father and local religious leaders could not answer his question about Muhammad’s blessing, Amjad decided to explore alternative religions. All were dead ends. But Amjad continued his search, regularly reciting the first chapter of the Quran from memory and asking God to show him the way.
Dreams and Answers to Prayer
Sometime later, Amjad began having a recurring dream in which he entered a church and lit a candle. In the dream, a man with a white beard approached him and said, “Here is the right way.” Amjad began learning about Christianity and began attending church. There, he became friends with a Christian man and saw Christianity lived out. He liked what he saw, so even though he still did not fully understand the Gospel, he decided to become a Christian and declared it publicly. But declaring one’s faith in Christ is no small thing in Syria. Immediately, Amjad faced persecution, verbal abuse, and threats for his decision. His own family showed him nothing but contempt.
Then tragedy struck, and struck again. Amjad and his wife, Tahira, lost two children in their infancy. Heartbroken, Amjad watched as his neighbors showed him disdain rather than compassion. Some even gloated over his loss. This was all the assurance he needed to know that Islam was not from God.
About this time, Amjad had another dream in which he walked on water. This was before he’d ever read or heard the account of Jesus walking on water from the Gospels. The Lord was stirring something in Amjad’s heart. Amjad experienced more answers to his prayers and grew in his understanding of the Christian faith through a discipleship program.
A New Home
Because of the effects of the war in Syria, Amjad and his family relocated to Iraq, looking for a better life. There, he found a church distributing food to those in need. When he showed up, he didn’t tell the believers that he, too, was a Christian, for he didn’t want them to think he was just saying that in order to receive aid. Amjad and his family stuck around, and two years later, Amjad publicly confessed his faith in Christ and was given a Bible. Amjad was illiterate so his wife Tahira read the Bible aloud to him and their family. A short time later, the entire family came to Christ and were baptized.
Since moving to Iraq, Amjad has been harassed, threatened and repeatedly fired from jobs after his employers discover he is a Christian convert. Because of this, his family is struggling to pay their bills and buy enough food to sustain them. Fortunately, a Help the Persecuted Field Ministry Team member was introduced to Amjad and we have stepped in to help Amjad and his family invest in their own small business. Amjad can now provide for his wife and children in the long term — with dignity and stability.
Living Water for Persecuted Brothers and Sisters
Our God is faithful to satisfy our questions when we seek the Truth. He honors our pursuit with Himself—quenching our thirst with His living water. And He is faithful to not forsake His own. God is providing living water for our persecuted brothers and sisters in the Middle East and North Africa. Thank you for partnering with us in prayer and with financial gifts to be vessels that God uses in these areas hostile to the Gospel.
There are many men, women and children who are seeking answers to their hearts’ questions. With your gift today, we can continue to disciple new believers, teaching them God’s Word and offering practical support as they face growing persecution.