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We were honored to be invited to an Iranian family’s home for a No-Rooz celebration for their New Year. After wonderful food, laughing, and dancing, the husband reverently took an ornate book from the bookshelf. He explained that the book was full of beautiful writings that applied truthfully and personally to whoever read it. It was not a Bible, not even a Quran, but a book of poetry by 14th century Hafez. To find his personal truth for the New Year, our friend randomly opened the poetry book, and blindly placed his finger on the page. Then opening his eyes, he read what his finger pointed to, and declared that it would come true for him in his life.

As our families spent more time together, we shared about the everyday issues and problems in our lives. And often we answered, “That reminds me of a Bible story” or “Jesus promised that...” and we would read it together in the Bible. Then one day the husband told me that our conversations cause him to stay up at night, unable to sleep because he kept thinking about the truth of Bible and the powerful words of Jesus. In contrast, the randomly chosen poem of Hafez was not talked about again, the power of its “truth” had fizzled out.

Let us pray that Iranians would see Jesus as the most beautiful Word of God (John 1:14), the highest Truth (John 14:6).

Let us pray that Iranians would not read the Bible in a “magical” way, but with understanding and open hearts pointing them to Jesus (John 5:39).