It is my hope that this update finds you growing and prospering in the grace of the Lord Jesus. Please continue praying for our missionaries in the Middle East. We are now working with ten men and three churches in seven countries throughout the region. It is my prayer that the Lord would open more doors for HeartCry to impact the indigenous church in the Middle East.
In the last few months, HeartCry has taken on the support of two church planters in undisclosed countries: Boutros B. and Sharif A. Their locations must remain secret due to the high level of persecution that exists in their areas of ministry. In this update, I have included an introduction to Boutros and the testimony of his conversion.
I have also included the testimony of Adam, a recent convert from Islam to Christianity. Again, for his safety, Adam’s location, along with his real name, must remain undisclosed. He came to know the Lord through the ministry of Dr. Andrew and Mahrus B. In this testimony, Dr. Andrew shares with us the extraordinary events that led up to Adam’s conversion. It has been reported that approximately 80% of all Muslims that come to Christ were deeply impacted by dreams prior to their conversion. Adam is one of these former Muslims.
Boutros B. - Protected
Boutros is a church planter who works in an undisclosed country on the Arabian Peninsula. Though he grew up in a Coptic community in Egypt, he is now serving the Lord in a Muslim country with almost no Evangelical witness. For a number of years, he has felt a strong burden to move to this country in order to strengthen and establish indigenous churches. Boutros is a gifted preacher and has a heart to see the church equipped with the truths of God’s Word. The following is his testimony of conversion.
My story of seeking God started as I was searching for the best way to avoid His anger and wrath. I was worried about the unknown and hell; this brought me to a point where I hated God and believed that He was an unjust God that did not care. I even convinced myself that God did not exist and that all the things we were taught about Him were just unreal stories.
I met a man who started teaching me philosophy and how to prove that God does not exist. I studied with him until I ceased believing in God and refused to adhere to any religion. However, my new ideology did not fulfill me. I then got involved in many immoral relationships that also did not fulfill me. Once again, fear started overcoming me and filling my soul and mind. I assumed that becoming religious was not the solution, especially since I was still involved in many immoral relationships. Nevertheless, I became more afraid of both hell and God at the same time.
I finally decided to become religious again, but this time my religious practices had a different goal: I was seeking to be closer to God. I started going to an Evangelical church and became attracted to their way of worshipping, especially since I am from an Orthodox background. I felt the love of the people around me and their willingness to answer my questions. But still I was empty.
Then a day came when I went to the church and, sitting between two brothers, started singing. Suddenly, I started to cry hysterically. I collapsed on the ground as I sang the words of the song, “The Blood of Jesus Is Precious.” I started shouting in front of everyone, saying: “I am sinner, O Lord; save me! I don’t deserve Your blood that You shed on the cross! Thank You for dying in place of me!” I kept weeping until the end of the song. Then I listened to the message from the preacher, and at the end of the service, I hugged the brothers at the church for the first time, and I felt the love of Jesus pouring into my heart. The apostle John says that this is a sign that we have come out from death into life. It felt as if a big rock had been removed from my back!
On the next day, I was on the train heading to my university, and I spent the whole time in prayer and worshiping the Lord. I started seeing God in a different way. I felt that everything I had known about God was a lie, and I realized that God was forgiving and full of love. Now I believe that I am in debt to the Lord for His mercy and love toward me. Glory belongs to the Father and His Son and the Holy Spirit.
Adam as told by Dr. Andrew
Adam was raised in the Middle East and born a Muslim. Within Islam, it is forbidden to change to another religion and deny Islam. Adam did just that, at the risk of his life.
His story begins with a series of dreams. In the first dream, Adam was walking in the desert, very thirsty, until he arrived in front of a mountain. As he looked up the mountain, he saw a man coming down, carrying water on his back. The man said, “Drink from my water. No one who drinks my water will ever thirst again.” Adam woke up, but he did not know who this man was that he had seen so clearly in his dream. Later, he was telling a Christian friend about this dream, and his friend told him that the man in the dream was Jesus. However, his Christian friend assumed that Adam, a Muslim at that time, was mocking Christianity and left him without answering any other questions.
Later, Adam had a second dream: He was standing before Christ’s cross while Jesus was hanging on it. As Jesus was on the cross, he died, and everything became dark. According to Adam, it wasn’t a normal darkness; it was a different kind of darkness. There were people from all tribes and nations around the cross looking at the Lord. Suddenly, the cross started to fall down. All the people ran, caught the cross, set it upon their backs, and began walking together.
Adam did not understand the scenes he was seeing and became more and more curious about who this man was who continued to visit him in his dreams.
In Adam’s third and final dream, he was with Jesus at the Jordan River, and Jesus grabbed him and placed him under the water and brought him back up quickly out of it. At this point, Adam didn’t realize that Jesus had baptized him in his dream because he didn’t even know what baptism was!
Eventually, Adam met another Christian man whom he trusted and told him all about his recent dreams. That Christian man knew immediately what was happening to Adam, so he called a local ministry who would be willing to meet with Adam and discuss his experiences.
Adam met with that local ministry, and soon after, he came to faith and professed Christ as the Son of God and his Lord and Savior. He has been discipled for months now, and fellow brothers in the Middle East recently baptized him.
It is truly amazing how sovereign our God is and how He works in the hearts of His children. What a privilege that He allows us to join in His work! Pray for Adam and other brothers like him as they continue to be discipled, grow in their faith, and risk their lives to worship our God. He is worthy!