Monday, December 27, 2010


"But blessed are your eyes, because they see..." Matthew 13:16a
I don’t want to miss seeing Jesus do something. It’s not very often in Muslim ministry that things happen quickly in peoples’ souls. It can, of course, but usually there is a long process. It might take decades even. I watch for the birthing signs in my Muslim friends’ hearts that they are softening spiritually, their misunderstandings and misconceptions are getting answered, understanding sin and becoming convicted are beginning to happen, forbidden questions are being voiced, prayer for needs have been answered slowly convincing them that there is power in the name of Jesus, a surrendering to the truth of Jesus’ deity is dawning, fears and superstitions are getting less because they are discovering God’s love, and their hearts are finally welcoming our Savior. I’ve done a lot of watching in the past year. Maybe you, too.

Sometimes it’s us they are watching. Karima watches me closely. She wants to know where I’m going, whom I’m seeing, and what I’m teaching about when I travel to speak, etc. It’s not a comfortable type of being watched. When I go to Muslim women’s parties I’m keenly aware I’m being watched closely. When we were in Pakistan we were watched closely as foreigners. Some of my Muslim friends visit church and watch everything intently. I know I’m being watched when I pray with a Muslim woman. I love watching a Muslim woman’s heart move towards Jesus. I watched Zarina over the past year as we read from the Toddler’s Bible Story book. She always loves our reading and prayer times. One day she expressed she wanted to pray. I’m not sure exactly what she prayed in her language but I heard the name of Isa being mentioned numerous times.

I miss Nazanin. She won't leave my heart. She always wore her hijab in an unique way that I’ve not seen by another Muslim woman. Her beloved father was martyred for his brave faith in Jesus. Nazanin married a strong Muslim man who was never too happy about me spending time with her or reminding her of her father and his faith in Jesus. Suddenly there were no more returns of messages left on the phone. I lost touch with her. Wherever I would go I’d watch for her appearance. Ten years went by. One day, way on the other side of the city, in a grocery store, I’d not been in, I saw a woman going to the check out. She was wearing a hijab only like Nazanin did. I ran up to her and quietly queried, “Nazanin?” She turned around and fell into my arms. “Don’t forget your dad, Nazanin.” Those were the last words I said to her. I keep watching for another sight of her. Every day I look at the beautiful handiwork she lovingly made for me and say a prayer for her. I was assured that day in the store that the Holy Spirit is still at work in Nazanin’s life.

Don’t give up. Just keep watching. God IS doing something!

Dear heavenly Father, I don’t want to miss out on anything You might be doing. Give me eyes that will stay watching. In Jesus’ name, Amen.