Jan 2015

Sepideh

I'm Sepideh and I work in a company in accounting department and today I want to share with you sisters and brothers a testimony. Almost five years ago my older brother converted to Christianity by one of his friends. First, I thought that it also was among the curiosities of his youth because he was a very curious and mischievous child from childhood and wanted to understand everything. But after a while I saw many changes in him and his behavior.

Before believing in Jesus, Saman was a very jealous person and became angry too soon to talk to him, but after believing that his behavior was changed so that it could only be a miracle.

That's why I started reading bible secretly and then publicly. I think that God’s words in the bible had no time or place; it does not appear as if the words were spoken two thousand years ago because it is entirely consistent with the life of a person, even in the 21st century and this is a big distinction between Christianity and the religions that claim to save humanity but their laws are not consistent even with the first standards of human rights.

After reading Bible repeatedly, I realized that I am a sinner and I can do nothing for the forgiveness of my sins except faith in the blood of Jesus. Jesus’ words in the Gospel clearly show us that He is God because his words are very powerful and go into the depth of hearts. So I had no reason to be Muslim and refuse to believe in Jesus Christ and thus I believed in Jesus.

after a time when my brother and I were separate from other believers and church, we were introduced to a house church by Saman’s friend and it was a turning point in our faith because it is very important for the growth of Christian’s faith to participate in a church and worship God with other believers at least a few hours per week.

Five years passed since our belief in Jesus and everything was good until an evil storm invaded our lives, but perhaps it was a trial for our faith. One morning when I was at work, my mother called me and said that my brother has called her and said that two his Christian friends and he were arrested by the police and after saying it the phone has disconnected. She told me to be careful because it was possible that they would come to my workplace and arrest me.

That moment I was so afraid that I fainted. After I came to and became better, I really did not know what to do. I was so worried for my brother. We did not know where he's been taken or in what condition he was. I exited from my workplace to go to the police station. Well, I remembered that under the hot summer sun all my body had been soaked from sweat, and when I approached the police station, I was confused what to do. If I went into the police station, they might also arrest me but if I did not go, I could not know what happened for Saman.

I was trying to think and make the right decision, but as if my mind did not work and I could not decide, so I went home to calm down a bit and become better.

After a little rest my mother and I went the police station. I stood in front of the door of police station and my mother went inside and asked about my brother, but they denied his presence there and we came back home without any information from him. That night I was so concerned; concern about my brother, in what condition he was, about our believer friends and their families and about that the police officers invade our home to find evidence and take our personal belongings with themselves! Also, I worried that I would get into trouble and be arrested.

Next day when I called our shepherd and told him the matter, he said that I would not call him with that SIM card number anymore and change it. Also, he closed the church for a while lest the church members would expose to the risk of arrest. By hearing the shepherd’s words I was afraid more. I decided to gather all the Christian books and CDs and take them out of the house and into a safe place.

The church was the only place where I could be quieted a little, but it had also closed for the safety of other members. I was so upset and I felt that nothing can give me peace except that I would kneel and empty my heart before God! A sense in my heart told me to pray and join to those who are praying for arrested believers! I started to pray. With so helplessness and despair I wanted Christ to be freed all believers in prison and return to their homes as soon as possible. Also, I prayed that our Church would not be disrupted and everything would become like before.

During the prayer, I saw the image of the Gospel of Mark 4: 35- 41: “That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, "Let us go over to the other side." Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, "Teacher, don't you care if we drown?" He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, "Quiet! Be still!" Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, "Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?" They were terrified and asked each other, "Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!"

I felt that this part of the gospel is a promise for me to calm down the storm that had disturbed our lives. But Jesus’ warning also was a warning for me! Why I was so afraid and why I had not trusted in Christ! Did I still have no faith? Indeed, prayer and the Word of God calmed my heart. I gave my brother and other believers as well as my life into the hands of Christ.

The next day I took a few days off from work and went to the police station but they still denied my brother’s presence there. I also went to other police station to get the information about my brother, but no one gave me any information.

After two weeks that we did not know anything about my brother, he called and said that he was good and wanted us not to be worried. He said he could not talk but would call again. Then, a week later he called again and told us to which prison had been taken and said that he had be brought to court and the judge has given him and two believer friends who had been arrested with him, three years to be in prison. After a month we could meet my brother, but a short time! He could only say that his friends and he were arrested while distributing the Bible and they have interrogated and have been bothered a lot. Within three months when he is in prison, we could see him twice and barely allow us to meet him. But I believe that God wants to use my brother there, so I trust God and I'm not afraid because my brother is in the hands of God.