I tried to share the Gospel with them, but it was tough – the husband mostly laughed at me.
It was August 1994, we had reluctantly moved to a new address and a few months later this family from our homeland, Iran, moved next door. For some reason, they later moved away and we lost contact, though we kept on praying for them in our prayer group.
A few years later they came back to the same street, a few houses away from us. When I saw him he did not look well. After a short while his wife left him with his son who also had medical problems. He, himself was diagnosed with severe Muscular Dystrophy.
And then I found out, to my amazement, that he had come to know the Lord Jesus as his Lord and Saviour. He later explained to me that all the things I had shared with him years ago had come back to him and he accepted the Lord!
Later he told me that all the things I had shared with him years ago and come back to him…
For many years he has been housebound, living with his disabled son, who is solely depend on him. Yet he has been such an encouragement not only to me, but to many other people. I have never seen someone like him, who has been going through so much pain, yet still growing into the strongest Christian I know, and always praising the Lord.
A step of faith rewarded
I am the leader of an Iranian Christian outreach in the UK. I come from a Muslim background and was saved by the grace of God. Miraculously my whole family came to know the Lord as well.
The Iranian Christian Outreach in our city began around 1995 as a prayer group formed by a small number of people from different fellowships. Around 1999, we took a step of faith to expand this work by taking a name, Noor, that means ‘light’ in Arabic and Persian, and by holding regular open meetings to which we invited those who have never heard the good news of our Lord Jesus Christ.
We want to thank God for all he has done over these years. Our open meetings now have around 150-200 people attending for worship, sharing of the gospel and teaching, with translation into Farsi. This is followed by a meal. For 15 years, we have met on Saturday every month, and now we meet every couple of months from 6pm till around 10pm.
This extraordinary growth is God’s work, and we realise that we must be completely reliant on him for this to continue. Around 70% of those who attend these events have never been to any sort of Christian meeting before!
Touching lonely and isolated hearts
Many of those who visit us are very lonely people, who feel isolated in this foreign land, and their hearts are often touched by seeing the reality of Christian love and acceptance. These meetings enable them to hear the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ (usually for the first time) and to have fellowship with Christians from their own culture. This is then followed by having Bible teaching in Farsi on a 10-week course to make sure they are grounded in the Scriptures.
We believe that this astonishing interest in the gospel, and the growing number of converts from those who have traditionally been some of the hardest of all men and women to reach, is a testimony to the fact that this is God’s hour for these people. He has opened a door and we want to be able to walk through it.
Like many churches, last year was difficult for us, with no meetings or fellowship. Please keep on praying for the Iranian Christian Outreach and for the Lord to provide for our every need.
Nasir* serves in evangelism and discipleship in the UK
*Names and identities have beeb changed.