A worker from The Voice of the Martyrs recently visited a missionary from another country. The missionary was led by God to leave his home and travel to a land where the people follow many different religions. He lived in the land with his wife and children. Read below what the missionary told the worker.
For the first year I was here, I tried to preach to Buddhists, but I failed. The next year I preached to atheists. But I just couldn’t do it anymore. I didn’t have the confidence to reach out to them.
Most of the people in the land are Muslims. But I never thought of reaching out to Muslims because I hated Muslims.
During this time of failing, I read Genesis 12 where God told Abraham that all nations would be blessed because of him. Then I felt touched by the Holy Spirit. I was reminded of the children of Ishmael (Genesis 16) who are the Muslims. I realized that God has not forgotten the Muslims.
So finally I began to reach out to the Muslims despite my dislike for them. I got to know more about them and began to make friends with them.
If you want to serve the Muslim world, you must get closer to them. In the beginning I did not preach to them, but rather helped them at harvest time. I helped them in the fields doing long days of manual labor. I learned their language.
Not Easy Work
One day, after seven years, a Muslim man invited us into his home. “I’ve been watching you and your family for seven years,” he said. “You are not like other people; you are better. In fact, you are better than Muslim people.”
Since that visit, God has blessed our ministry and many in the area have come to know the Lord. But it has not been easy. Some Muslims want to stop Christians. A Muslim leader has told his people, “If there is an ‘accident’ and you hurt a Christian, don’t worry about it! We know how to deal with the policemen.”
The happiest thing I ever experienced was when two Muslim leaders came to Christ.
My wife was a full time worker, too, serving beside me. She died three years ago at the age of 41. We were and are very poor. We had no money to pay a hospital when she was sick.
My son has had his ups and downs in dealing with our situation. When my wife was alive we used to ask him what he wanted to do when he grew up. He would always say, “I want to be just like you, serving God in missions.”
After my wife died, someone asked him the same question. “I want to make a lot of money,” he answered. “I don’t want to be so poor.”
But recently when I asked him what he wanted for his birthday, he answered, “I don’t need anything. Just pray for the grace of God to be on our family.”
Please join the missionary in prayer for his family. Pray that they will reach more of the people in the land for Christ.
(Source: VOM contacts. Edited and paraphrased from the original for clarity and security.)