Greece (CAM) — After a refugee mother of four obtained replacement documents with help from a native ministry in Greece, she continued to come to the ministry office but gave no reason for doing so.
As workers began building trust with the Muslim refugee from a country in the Middle East, she told them how she had married at 14 and that her husband had physically abused her, a ministry leader said.
She divorced him, but they were living together again for the sake of the children – though he continued to verbally abuse her, she told the ministry leaders. Workers then learned why she continued to visit, as “she started telling us how much love and peace she felt every time she came to our office,” one of the two leaders said.
“She would often come to our offices and break down,” she said. “She would cry for her bad past life and for all that she was going through with her husband. She would confide in us that she doesn’t trust him at all, and that he was doing things behind her back.”
“She would cry for her bad past life and for all that she was going through with her husband.”
Though a hard-core Muslim, the woman was open to the Christian workers praying for her and indicated that, during their prayers, she had an intense sense of God’s presence. Workers had the opportunity to share verses from the Bible, and she said she sometimes read it along with the Koran.
“Sometimes she asks questions about Bible verses, and our social worker has built a close relationship with her and has taken the opportunity to share something more from the Bible,” the leader said.
Workers pray that God will give her a special revelation that will make such a difference that she will not be able to deny Christ, she said.
“We often pray with her,” she said. “She comes not because she needs something but just because she feels the love that we show her. We explain that the love she feels is from God. She comes to visit as if we are her family. We believe that God will use this in a unique way to touch not only her life but also her ex-husband, who seems to have a sketchy line of activities.”
Dreams and Miracles
Workers providing such legal orientation along with humanitarian aid have daily opportunities to share the gospel with refugees.
Besides sharing in individual meetings with people in their offices, they also tell of Christ’s atoning sacrifice in Bible studies and home visits, and they recently started a youth group where both teenagers and elementary school children heard the gospel.
Through Zoom and WhatsApp calls, the leaders continue to disciple refugees who have gone on to other European countries; joining one call was the sister of a ministry leader from Iraq who is being trained as a church planter in Germany.
The woman in Iraq, Sara*, had suffered burns similar to what the co-leader in Greece had suffered in his native Syria. He shared about how Christ had helped him and then asked her to put her hand on her burned knee while they prayed for healing.
After prayer, she remained still, then revealed that she had felt something like an electric current from her head to her toes. The leader told her more about Christ and said she would begin to have dreams.
She later told him she’d had two dreams. In one the leader was pulling a rope tied to her to make her jump across the canal to his side; in the second, a woman put the mark of a cross in blood on her forehead.
Sara wanted to tell these dreams to her son, who was in Germany and who – unbeknownst to her – her brother and the ministry leader had led to faith in Christ. The leader encouraged her to share the dream with her son.
“She started sharing with him,” the other leader said. “The son, who is a believer but hadn’t revealed this to any of his family, told the leader, ‘My mother is trying to evangelize me!’”
There are other members of the family in Germany who have put their trust in Christ, the leaders said.
“They are afraid of revealing this one to the other,” one said. “It is going to be awesome when they will come to the knowledge that, beyond their blood relation, they all share faith in Jesus due to the covenant He made with us through His blood!”
Local missionaries in Europe are proclaiming the message of salvation in Christ with refugees who have suffered deep loss. Help workers bring them Gospel hope.
*Name changed for security reasons
Header and story images courtesy of Christian Aid Mission.