The Peace of God -- A Story from Russia
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We read together John 10:10 -
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life and have it to the full.”
Sharing the good news that Jesus understands suffering and that he overcame fear and death, Guliza began to soften. I asked her if fear came from God, and she answered, “No.” We assured her, “God wants to give you peace in your heart right now. He is offering you life with abundance — assurance of life eternal that begins now!”
Guliza watched a short Good News story in her Central Asian language. Asking her what she thought about it, Guliza responded that she had heard about Jesus but never really understood much about Him. She referred to herself as a Muslim or “cousin” in the local language.
“We ‘cousins’ make sacrifices of animals for sins. But you don’t make sacrifices,” she said.
I replied, “No, we don’t anymore because Jesus . . . ”
“Because Jesus became your sacrifice.”
“Yes!” we responded. “And Jesus became the sacrifice for the redemption of the whole world. God is not the God of any one nation or group of people. He is the Creator of all people, and He died and rose again in victory to give life to every single person.”
My teammate and I were so aware of the presence of God throughout the entire conversation. Later, when I mentioned this to her, she responded that His presence was with us because we were talking about Him!
Guliza asked how we pray and where we pray. We shared that we simply gather with other believers in homes and study the Word together and pray together.
My teammate asked Guliza how we could pray for her.
“Pray that God would be next to me, with me,” she answered quickly.
As we prayed, it was obvious how touched she was. She thanked us over and over for talking with her. Amid a tumultuous time of great fear and worry, Guliza heard the voice of Jesus calling her name. Not once did she dispute the claims of Jesus, even that He is God, but simply and sadly lamented, “But I’m a ‘Cousin.’”
Please pray that the Spirit would produce in her faith and boldness to decide to follow Jesus. Pray that “the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding,” would guard her heart and mind in Jesus (Philippians 4:7).
*This name has been changed for security. This article originally appeared in Volume 8, Issue 3 of the Worldview magazine. Used with permission.