SHARING FAITH UNDER PRESSURE


STANDING STRONG THROUGH THE STORM

SHARING FAITH UNDER
PRESSURE
============================
The Lord is not slow in keeping his
promise, as some understand slowness.
Instead he is patient with you, not
wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to
come to repentance. 2 Peter
3:9

Twenty-nine-year-old Maryam Rostampour and thirty-two-year old
Marzieh
Amirizadeh spent 259 days in Tehran’s notorious Evin prison in 2009
in Iran.
They had to overcome the fear of life imprisonment and the
possibility of
execution because they loved and followed Jesus Christ. They
had to remain
strong through weeks in solitary confinement, and endless hours
of
interrogation by Iranian officials and religious leaders. They had to
endure
months of harsh living conditions and debilitating sickness. In their
first
interview (with Sam Yeghnazar of Elam Ministries), they shared what
life was
like in prison and how they survived.

Maryam commented, “When
we were arrested most of the guards treated us badly,
especially when they knew we had been involved in evangelism. They would curse
us and would not
let us drink water from the public tap or use the wash basin.
But this
changed and eventually they asked us to pray for them.”

Marzieh said,
“Some [prisoners] called us ‘Dirty, unclean, apostates,’ but
their opinion
changed and they asked for forgiveness. We had become an example
to them and
they would take our side.”

Maryam added, “At Evin Prison the
well-educated political and business
prisoners called us ‘Mortad Kasif’
(Unclean apostates). In less than a month
everything changed. As they got to
know us, they were curious about our faith,
they respected us and called upon
us to sort out arguments they had between
themselves.”

When asked if
any prisoners came to faith, she said, “Yes. There were those
who accepted
Christ. When we were in Vozara [the first prison the women were
taken to] we
prayed the sinner’s prayer with many of the prostitutes. They
prayed
themselves and we prayed for them. But there were others who were
too
frightened to confess their faith. There were many who were
impacted.”

Even in prison, under tremendous pressure, it is possible to
share one’s
faith.

RESPONSE: Today I will resolve to use my freedom to
share my faith with others
in spiritual darkness.

PRAYER: Lord may
other Christian prisoners around the world have the courage
and opportunity
to share their love for You today.

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