Every salvation story is different. Murad began his by hitting a pedestrian with his car.
The accident wasn’t necessarily all his fault, but in Murad’s Middle Eastern country, that doesn’t matter. The person at fault is the one who doesn’t get hurt
The medical bills stacked up quickly, and Murad was responsible for all of them. Tradition also required Murad to pay a separate amount as an apology to the family. The full amount was 20 times what Murad made in one month.
In the midst of that crisis, Murad’s family was hit with another: Murad’s mother, Qismah, was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer.
There wasn’t money for advanced treatment. And if Murad couldn’t pay his debts, he might not even get to be there for Qismah’s last moments. He could be thrown into debtor’s prison for an entire year.
Murad desperately needed a miracle.
His Mother Found Hope in Christ
Qismah knew miracles were possible.
As a Muslim, she’d spent most of her life believing salvation was something you worked for — without any guarantee that you could earn it. Then her sister, Ulfah, became a Christian.
Ulfah began talking about Jesus differently than Islam did. She said Jesus was God’s Son, sent to pay the price for the world’s sins. All who put their faith in Him would be set free for eternity.
Qismah was amazed by this miracle of salvation. As her cancer spread, she gave her whole life to Christ. And as her death drew closer, she looked forward to a beautiful eternity with Jesus.
Qismah longed for her family to know the same joy and peace.
Almost a year after his accident, Murad was still feeling the impossible weight of his debts. Qismah couldn’t prevent her son’s imprisonment, but she knew God could give Murad the true hope he desperately needed.
Murad’s countdown continued until he had only one week of freedom left. And then, God sent another messenger.
A Christian Doctor Shared the Gospel
A woman in the community told Qismah about an American, Christian doctor named Gerard. Gerard had come to the Middle East as a TEAM missionary to provide Christ-centered medical care to those in need. It was possible he could help treat Qismah’s cancer.
Qismah agreed to a house call, but she wanted more than medical help. She wanted her family to hear the Gospel.
“She was so happy we were able to visit at a time when her two adult sons were home from work because she wanted us to share with them,” Gerard says.
As Gerard assessed Qismah’s situation, he realized he couldn’t do much for her medically. However, he could give Qismah the thing she wanted most: He spoke with her sons and encouraged them to seek the truth.
Murad and his brother listened, unconvinced. But then, the night before his court date, Murad had a dream that would change his entire family.
A Divine Dream Opened His Eyes
In the dream, Murad found himself in front of the courthouse, waiting to be sentenced. Out of nowhere, Gerard drove up to him, put his hand on Murad’s neck and prayed.
When he woke up, Murad went to court — and received a sentence that stunned everyone.
Instead of prison time, the judge offered Murad more time to pay off his debts slowly. As long as he continued making payments, the judge said, Murad didn’t have to go to prison at all.
The ruling was so shocking, Murad’s entire family considered it a miracle.
Murad and his brother gave their lives to Christ right away, and Gerard began a weekly Bible study with them. Then, Murad’s father and sister chose to follow Christ, too.
Other new believers began coming to the group: An aunt, uncle and nephew. A co-worker of Murad’s. Two neighbors. But God’s incredible movement hasn’t been limited to Murad’s friends and family.
“Others in their community have similar stories of dreams and crazy life changes. … It has been unlike anything we have seen or experienced before,” Gerard says.
Just as He did with Murad, God is using life’s circumstances to draw a nation to Himself. Let us pray that many will give their lives to Christ and experience the hope only He can give.
*All names in this story have been changed to keep subjects safe.
Join TEAM missionaries in a work that is “unlike anything we have seen or experienced.” Talk with a missions coach to explore the possibilities in the Middle East!