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Iran: God’s Help in a Dream

Dr. Mehrdad is a Christian leader from Iran, where most of the people are Muslims. He recently talked with VOM Radio about how fast the church in Iran is growing. With the growth of the church comes persecution. But God is faithful to encourage His people who suffer.

Dr. Mehrdad told the following story about an Iranian Christian who was taken to the police station several times and interrogated harshly. (To interrogate is ask someone many questions, sometimes using threats or violence.)

One night, the Christian started praying for his interrogator. Then God showed him in a dream an elderly lady who was very sick. In the dream, God asked the Christian to pray for this sick, elderly lady and said, “This is the mother of your interrogator, so pray for her.”

The Christian started praying for the woman every day. The next time he was taken for questioning, his interrogator was treating him very badly. The Christian felt something inside him saying, “Tell him, tell him.” If he was wrong and the interrogator didn’t have a sick mother, it would be very embarrassing. So he had to trust the voice inside him.

The Christian asked the interrogator, “How is your mom? How is your mother doing?”

The man said, “What business do you have with my mom? Why are you asking about my mother?”

The Christian answered, “God has shown your mother to me a few nights ago. She is very sick, and He asked me to pray for her. I have been praying for her.”

The interrogator was shocked and said, “Yes, my mom is really very sick. Please continue to pray for her.” As a result, the interrogator began to like the Christian, left him alone, and didn’t bother him anymore.

(Source: vomradio.net. Edited for length, clarity, and age-appropriateness.)

To Talk About
Why do you think the Christian began praying for the interrogator? (Read Matthew 5:43-48.) Have you ever prayed for someone who treated you badly?


10 Quotes from 2018

Strengthening the next generation

The following quotes were shared with or by workers from The Voice of the Martyrs during 2018. Most of the quotes were shared by Christians from countries where believers are persecuted.

1. “Never once in my heart did I feel the Holy Spirit leading me to keep silent about Jesus.” — former Muslim woman who now follows Jesus.

2. “Persecutors know if they get the next generation, they win.” — VOM worker

3. “There is peace and contentment in being where God wants you, even in the shadow of death.” — VOM worker, inspired by the faith of a Christian in the Central Africa Republic

4. “Persecution has never stopped, and neither will I.” — African Christian who was hospitalized after enemies attacked him

5. “Prayer has to be a custom for you before a crisis comes.” — Iranian Christian

6. “The kingdom advances when God’s people take small steps of obedience.” — VOM worker

7. “I know I’m going to die for Christ, but before that, I’m going to share the gospel with as many people as I can.” — persecuted Christian in a Muslim country

8. “Everyone coming to Jesus is the only ‘peace process’.” — persecuted Christian in a war-torn country

9. “Every 40 hours, another Christian is attacked [in India].” — Christian worker in India

10. “We serve the persecuted to reach the persecutors.” — VOM worker

(Source: VOM workers and contacts. Edited for length, clarity, reading level, and security.)

To Do
Choose five of the quotes above and say them in your own words. How many of the quotes do you agree with?


Iran: Sara

A secret Sunday school in Iran

Seven-year-old Sara like to watch Christian satellite TV programs at her home in Iran. One of the programs explained the Good News of Jesus, and Sara trusted Him as her Savior!

Iran is a Muslim country, and most people don’t have Bibles. Sara really wanted a Bible of her own. She began to put aside money little by little in a piggy bank so she could buy a Bible.

One day, her Muslim uncle came to visit. Sara showed him her piggy bank and said, “Uncle, you won’t believe what is happening! I am going to get my first ever Bible. I’m so excited!”

Her uncle was furious. He broke the piggy bank, took the money, and hit Sara.

“God Is So Good”
It was Christmastime, and some Christians were praying for Sara’s town and for her family. They knew that Sara’s family and others in the town were very poor. The Christians decided to give Sara some food, supplies, stationery — and a Bible!

Sara’s mother called the TV station and let Sara talk to the Christians there. “I just want to tell the whole world that God is so good,” Sara told them. “My uncle broke my piggy bank and took all the money. But yesterday God brought me a Bible, a notebook, and some crayons!”

Pray that all the children in Iran will be able to learn the truths in the Bible.

(Source: Elam Ministries)


Amin

The October 2018 issue of The Voice of the Martyrs newsletter tells stories of Christians in Iran who remain faithful to Christ even in times of persecution for their faith. Christian children, as well as adults, can be victims of bullying and persecution. Watch the video below to learn about Amin, a Christian boy in Iran.


Iran: God Has a Purpose

Ali and Soro’s family

Ali and his family follow Christ in a country where most people follow the teachings of Muhammad. (Learn more about the teachings of Jesus and Muhammad here.)

The family used to live in Iran. They started secret Christian house church groups where Iranian Christians could worship God together. But the government doesn’t want Christianity to spread in Iran.

One day, Ali’s wife, Soro, was cooking chickpea patties for their sons, ages 5 and 7. Suddenly the secret police burst in through the front door. The police were dressed all in black with their faces covered. “Mommy, who is that?” the frightened boys asked.

“It’s OK,” Soro answered. “We knew they were coming sometime.”

Soro and Ali were arrested, taken to prison, and separated. “Who is caring for my sons?” Soro wondered. After a while, God took away her fear, and she felt His presence. “I knew it was a privilege to be there with the Lord, so that was sweet,” she said. “But I also wanted to go be with [my children].”

Soro was released, and delighted to go home. But she refused to leave her sons, sleeping between them every night. Later, Ali was also released, but government watchers continued to watch and follow their family.

Several months passed, then the family moved to a nearby country and continued to witness to Muslims. “If we are one,” Soro said about their family, “then God called our kids, He called our family, and the Lord knew what He was doing with our kids.”

Their sons are teenagers now, and they have a younger daughter. Soro knows that God is at work in her children. She is waiting for the time when they will say, “Wow, God let me go through that, and He had a purpose for me, not just for my parents.”

Pray that God will give Ali and Soro’s family peace and unity as they continue to serve Him. Ask God to help their children understand His purpose for their lives.

(Source: October 2018 The Voice of the Martyrs newsletter. Edited for length, clarity, and age-appropriateness.)