From Slave to Friend

A story from a Frontiers field worker

“Finally, I know why God created us,” the veiled woman said. “He wants relationship with us—not just for us to be his slaves.”

Nate and Amber, Frontiers workers in South Asia, had been praying for months, asking God to give them relationships with men and women who were spiritually hungry.

Amber had met plenty of women who enjoyed talking about religion. Most Muslims do. But Amber didn’t want to discuss religion. She longed to spend time with women who were hungry for a faith that searched deeper than religious practices.

Then, Amber met Adeena, a woman who expressed a desire to study God’s Word.

Instead of just giving Adeena a Bible, Amber encouraged her to find others—family and friends from within her own community—with whom she could study the Bible. In order to see a movement to Jesus start in this people, the Truth needed to get into as many people’s hands as possible.

“God gave us this Word to share with others,” Amber explained. “Do you know others who need to hear God’s truth?”

Adeena immediately thought of her husband Kadeem. In addition, Adeena listed almost a dozen friends and their husbands whom she thought would also be eager to learn from God’s Word. Amber began helping Adeena plan the first Bible study.

“For the first time in their lives, they were discovering that they could encounter God for themselves through His Word.”

At the first Bible study, Adeena, her husband Kadeem, and a few friends and their spouses quieted to listen to a portion of Genesis in the local language. Nate and Amber joined the gathering in Adeena and Kadeem’s living room.

They listened to the story of creation and God’s relationship with Adam. Then Adeena prompted the group with questions such as, “What does this passage tell us about man? What does this tell us about God?” As Adeena led them through the passage, they were each encouraged to respond with their own answers. This process was a new concept for them. They found it challenging to give such unscripted, tentative responses. But it was a process they immediately liked!

As the study ended, the group was astounded. They had never studied like this before. Their educational upbringing required them to take in information through rote memorization—a method that fails to equip students to actually make use of the information in any practical way.

But in this process, each person was discovering, for the first time in their lives, that it is possible to encounter God for themselves through His Word.

As the couples began preparing to leave, a friend of Adeena’s named Noura came over to Amber and said, “Finally, I know why God created us—He wants relationship with us—not just for us to be his slaves.”

Noura’s husband chimed in, “You know, the Qur’an doesn’t say anything like this—about why God created the world.”

Amber looked at Noura and her husband, smiled, and asked, “What would it look like for you two to start your own study? Surely you know other people who need to hear this, right?”

Nate and Amber met with Adeena and Kadeem a few days later. As they talked about how the study went, they encouraged their local friends and said that—if they wanted—they could continue leading this group and—if they were up for it—the group should grow and multiply in order to get the truth into many people’s hands.

I hope they don’t feel that we are forcing them to do anything, Amber thought to herself.

Kadeem sensed Nate and Amber’s reluctance to push too hard.

“You say we should lead this if we want to,” Kadeem said. “Well, that is not the point. We do want to because we know this Book is true and right!”

Nate and Amber are encouraged to see how God is answering prayer. He is multiplying His Word through men and women like Kadeem and Adeena—people who are so captured by the truth of God’s Word that they will do what it takes to share it with others.

Continue to join us in praying for God to stir up spiritual hunger in the hearts of Muslims—as He is doing in Adeena, in her friends, and in their families!

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