It was a Sunday morning,
and we flagged down a taxi from the metro to head for church, but this morning was not going to be a normal Sunday. Our driver was a 50-year-old man we'll call Ibrahim. I told him we needed to get to the Kanisa (church) and asked if he knew what that was. A simple question was the beginning of an amazing conversation.
I began asking him about his life and his family, and within a couple of minutes, we found ourselves in a deeply spiritual conversation about Isa (Jesus) and Allah. We started by talking about Isa in the Quran. Ibrahim spoke about what an amazing man and prophet Isa was - how he did more miracles than any other man and had so much power. I obviously agreed with this, but then the conversation turned to what I thought would be a dead end - the Trinity and the fact that we believe that Isa is God.
In Islam, they revere Isa and highly respect Him, but they do not believe He is God. As we talked about the differences between our religions in this area, I was able to affirm that we believe the same thing - there is only one God - but we believe that God has three different roles and characteristics. Ibrahim did not agree with this, but he was not resistant to talking more about it. In that moment, I felt the Lord speak to me to use the analogy of one man being a father, son, and brother, yet he is still just one person. I asked him if he had a father, siblings, and children, and he said yes to all questions. I began to explain to him that this is like the trinity, but at the same time there is more to it. I admitted that we Christians don’t even fully understand, but our faith and revelation from Holy Spirit is what allows us to trust in this even though we don't fully understand it. After explaining to him that he was one man, yet has three ‘persons’ or ‘roles,’ and relating that to what God, the Spirit of God, and Isa are, he said to me, “Wow! That sounds logical! I don’t believe it because of what I know and believe, but it is very logical."
After this he asked a few more questions, apologizing the whole time for having so many queries. I strongly encouraged him to keep asking questions, because when we seek truth, we will find it. Ibrahim loved this, and was so open about his desire to know truth, whatever that may be. He went on to tell us that his daughter reads the Injil (New Testament) to him and he listened to a church pastor from Egypt sometimes (because he is illiterate). As a result, he had begun to ask many questions. He talked about how Islam is full of ifs - if you do this, if you do that, maybe, etc. He had learned that Christianity was not this way. He told me that he had heard that the God of the Bible still loves you even if you don’t do all the right things. We took advantage of this open door to confirm the truth of God’s unconditional love and to share a little more about it.
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"I strongly encouraged him to keep asking questions, because when we seek truth, we will find it."
After this amazing conversation (which we never wanted to end), I asked Ibrahim if I could pray for him and his family. I asked if I could pray for blessings from God and that Isa would show him what is truth. After I said this, something happened I never saw coming: Ibrahim began to pray this prayer - “Isa, please bless my family, and show me what is truth.”
WHAT!? This was incredible! Holy Spirit had worked so fast, and it all finished with Ibrahim praying his own prayer to Isa to show him what the truth is. We were completely blown away by this as we ended our conversation and said our goodbyes. I wrote down his contact information. We will continue to meet with him, hoping to continue talking, praying and walking with him as he seeks truth.
In Matthew 7:7-8, Jesus says, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.” Please pray with us for Ibrahim - that as he seeks Isa, Holy Spirit would reveal to him the One Who is Truth. Pray that Isa would show up in the dreams of Ibrahim. Pray that as his daughter reads the Injil to him, that Isa would speak so loudly to him in whatever way he needs to hear so that he knows what is true about God.
Thank you for reading this and praying. I hope that you can be encouraged today that God is moving in the lives of people all over the world who have lived their whole lives believing complete lies. God is showing truth to those who seek, and it is amazing!