Persecuted, Simon Forgave and Prayed For a Sick Girl
Persecution of new Jesus followers is common. Don’t give up hope. One day things could turn around as they did for a young man named Simon.*
This is the story of a young man born into a Muslim family. He was a good and faithful follower of Allah. In time, the young man, who we will call Simon, got married. After a few years, he and his wife had a child.
Not long after, this young Muslim man had a dramatic change in his life. He met several local young men who worked with Youth With A Mission.
The young men had been going door to door in his area. Their goal was to tell everyone they could about Jesus. Simon listened to their testimonies. After he had heard many stories, and observed their good lives, Simon gave his life to the Lord.
Simon is Persecuted
Sometime later, Simon went back home to see his family. Not surprisingly, his family began to realize that he had changed. He seemed happy, and was doing good things.
The fact that he was now following Jesus was a very serious issue. After all, Simon’s father was a “sheik”, or mosque leader. The last thing Simon wanted to do was to go to the mosque again. The Lord had dramatically changed his heart.
“You need to leave!”
The family was furious. They chased him out of the home that he had lived in since getting married. They also took away his possessions. These included the precious gifts that his parents had given him at his wedding.
This was a painful time for Simon and his wife. Even more problematic, his father took away his sewing machine. He was dependent upon the machine to earn a living as a tailor.
Simon was desperate. How was he going to feed his young family? He cried out to the Lord.
God Gives Simon a New “Family”
Thankfully, Simon was able to speak to the friends who had told him the good news some time ago. He realized that these friends were becoming more like a family to him than his own relatives.
Their first advice was to try to show love to his family, in the hope that they could be reconciled. This was wise and godly instruction. Sadly, in spite of his efforts, the broken relationship seemed beyond hope.
A Sick Young Girl
After some time something happened which alarmed the whole
village. A young girl had become dangerously ill. The villagers called upon the witch doctors, as was their custom. Not surprisingly, they were powerless to help.
Next they went farther afield and approached the medical doctors. But it was no use. They were no more able to heal the girl than the witch doctors were.
A Desperate Family
As they became more frightened, fearing that the girl would die, they remembered Simon and his God. “We need to find Simon, and find him quickly” they decided together. “He will know what to do!“
By God’s grace, they found him at home. He invited these desperate parents in. Tearfully they explained their frightening situation. They pleaded with him to help the dying girl.
Simon replied with humility and honesty. “I’d like to help, naturally. Of course, I can’t heal her myself. But I know someone who can!”
He went on to say, “You took everything from me. But there is someone who you can’t take away from me. That person’s name is Jesus!“
After that, Simon prayed for the girl. To the amazement and joy of the family, she was healed!
Because of this, the girl’s mother gave her life to Jesus. There was more to come. The relationships between the family members were restored to God’s glory.
And as of this writing, half of the extended family members are now following Jesus. What a glorious result!
Praise God for faithful, bold witnesses like Simon. Perhaps it is difficult to witness to members of your own family. They can be resistant to hearing the Good News coming from those they have grown up with. Your consistent, faithful witness will make a difference. One day, they will come and ask for prayer. Will you be ready to step up in faith and believe for a miracle?
If you feel that your family are the most difficult people on the planet, you are not alone. It can be helpful to get together and pray with friends for your families. You can encourage one another when your faith seems weak!
Do you need more resources on how to share Christ with your others? Check out the helpful tools on the No Place Left website.
*not his real name