International (MNN) — Many reports on Mission Network News describe how God is moving in the Muslim world. Today, a Deaf believer describes how God’s Spirit is stirring Deaf Muslim hearts.
A believer we’ll call “Zed” was born Deaf to Muslim parents in Central Asia. Through an interpreter, Zed describes how coming to Christ created both friction and Gospel opportunity in his Deaf community at college.
“The Deaf world, as you might know, is so small,” he begins. “Word got around rather quickly that I was saved. So, many of these Deaf Muslims were coming to me and [asking], ‘Why did you convert to Christianity?’”
Turn the other cheek
When Zed became a believer, he shared his testimony with members of his Deaf community and patiently answered their questions. Unfortunately, many people returned Zed’s kindness with evasion; some even turned hostile, he says.
“One of my friends… he straight up told me he wanted to kill me.”
When Zed learned of his friend’s anger, he extended forgiveness and love. “My friend was like, ‘No, you have this seething rage towards me. You have to have it’,” Zed says.
Zed’s friend wasn’t the only one to respond with fury. When he told his mother about his conversion, she was “really enraged,” Zed says.
Zed’s mother was “sitting at the dinner table [and] shoved it away,” he recalls. She then “asked if I was going to reject them [because I am] a Christian. And I said, ‘No, the Bible never says that!’”
As described here, Zed came to Christ after reading John 8:1-11 in a Bible his friend gave him. There were no Scripture portions in his sign language at that time, so reading God’s Word in English was Zed’s only option. Learn why sign languages are not a gestural version of spoken languages.
Now, God is using Zed to reach Muslims for Christ. “I’m not just reaching out to Deaf Muslims, I’m reaching out to hearing Muslims as well,” Zed says.
“It’s whatever God calls me to. And, what He calls us to is to spread the Gospel.”
As you read Zed’s story, ask the Lord for direction. Seek opportunities to reach Muslims – whether Deaf or hearing – for Christ. “If you’re willing to ask them about their faith, be willing to listen,” Zed advises.
“As your relationship with that individual grows, that’s when you start to pray for the Holy Spirit to change their heart and mind.”
Furthermore, “we have to really respect [the] passion that they have for their prayer and their fasting,” Zed adds.
“We need not to tell them, ‘Oh, it’s just false teaching.’ We need not deflate their faith — that is the most primary thing.”
Header image is a representative photo of a group of Deaf Muslims. (Photo by Albert Gonzalez Farran / UNAMID)