“How dare you?” Hassan* snarled.
“Leave me for a week to go to some Christian thing? Who will cook my food? Who will clean?”
His eyes, full of rage, bore into hers. “Forget church, woman! You need to attend mosque! But that would mean listening to me, wouldn’t it? And you never listen, do you?”
And with that, the blows came.
Slamming the door
Monday morning before dawn:
Sonya* quietly situated her luggage on her back and slipped out of the house for the church conference. One thing she would never do: forsake the God who redeemed her, no matter how much abuse she’d have to endure.
Standing on their porch, Hassan yelled, “Good riddance! See this? It is that woman’s only key to my house. And she will never come in again!”
Next door neighbors looked up from their gardening as he threw the key into the river that meandered by their homes. Then he stormed down the road where he would spend the week with his mistress.
Supported and encouraged
Many of the Christian converts at Sonya’s church in Liberia are illiterate. They make a point to attend the annual conference because an oral learning environment provides answers to faith questions they cannot obtain on their own.
Surrounded by her brothers and sisters in Christ, Sonya stood to vulnerably share the same prayer request she had a year ago.
“Hassan is cruel to me, but I want to honor my husband. Please ask God to show me how to do this.”
The conference fed her spirit, and by Friday, Sonya knew what she had to do. She stopped by the market on her way home, wanting to have a hearty meal ready for Hassan when he came home from Friday prayers at the mosque.
Arriving at their doorstep, Sonya furrowed her brow when the front door handle wouldn’t turn. She’d been gone long before his front-porch tirade.
Undeterred from her plan, she borrowed a pot from the neighbors and sat out front to clean the fish.
Cutting it open, she scraped against something hard in its belly. She cleaned off the object and discovered it was a key.
Puzzled, she called out to her neighbor, “This looks really familiar…”
Her neighbor urged her to try it in her front door lock. It slid right in.
Sonya opened the home, cleaned every corner of it, and finished preparing supper for her husband.
Silencing her accuser
When Hassan rounded the bend after praying at the mosque, he saw his house open with a fire stoked in the outdoor kitchen.
“What is this?” he fumed to himself. “This is unbelievable. The neighbors helped her break in.”
While hurling accusations at Sonya, Hassan examined the front door. Seeing no damage, he moved to the windows. Nothing.
“What,” he spat at her, “do you have to say for yourself? How did you get in?”
Sonya quietly explained the strange story of the key in the fish’s belly.
Stunned, Hassan didn’t say another word…
The one true God
Silent the entire next day, until moonbeams peaked through the window, Hassan finally asked, “What if I come to church with you tomorrow morning?”
She smiled. “You would be more than welcome to join me.”
After the church service, Hassan excused himself from his wife’s side and asked to speak privately with the pastor. He recounted the incredible story about the house key.
“I want to serve the God of the Christians,” he said, eyes wide, full of determination. “He is the One who knows and has power to do what no one else can.”
On that day, Hassan’s Muslim faith crumbled before the God of the impossible, the Alpha and the Omega, the Lord Almighty. Hassan accepted Jesus as his Savior. And Sonya found the Lord to be an ever-faithful, persistent Fisher of men.
“Go to the lake and throw out your line. Take the first fish you catch; open its mouth and you will find a four-drachma coin.” —Matthew 17:27 (NIV)
Thank you for joining in what God is doing through SIM to reach Muslims and to restore hurting marriages. You help make it possible for people like Sonya and Hassan to find new life in Jesus Christ.
Please join us in prayer:
- PRAY for Hassan and Sonya’s marriage, as they rebuild their lives and home together in Christ.
- PRAY for SIM workers in Liberia who disciple new believers in the Word of God and serve Muslims with the love and truth of Jesus.
- PRAY for continued miracles from God in Liberia and throughout all the world. Ask Him to reveal Himself to His children, in the exact, hand-tailored ways they need.
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