Forced to Choose: her Family or her Faith
Hassina was a respected young Algerian woman and a devout Muslim. She practiced her prayers, respected Ramadan and stood out in doing good works. “I tried to please God, doing all the things I should, but my life was a desert.
“I started to pray as a Muslim and perform my religious duties from a young age. I got up very early in the morning for the dawn prayer. Everybody loved me because they saw in me a model of obedience to Allah.
“When I finished my prayer, I knelt for a moment and implored God … to lead me from the shadows and into the light.”
This prayer was answered when she came to know Jesus Christ.
“My husband had a Christian friend who often talked to him about Jesus Christ. … One day, I asked my husband to practice prayers to Allah. He surprised me by replying that if he was to approach God, he would do it through Jesus Christ.”
Her husband told her that someone had told him about Christian TV channels that talk about Isa (Jesus) and the gospel. Wanting to know more about ‘the path of Jesus’, she asked him to get whatever was needed to watch these channels.
They watched, and heard the gospel. “My husband called the number at the end of a program with a focus on Christian teaching. A man replied and gave us the number of the leader of a church just a few miles from where we live. We invited him to our home. He came and he answered all our questions about God, the Christian faith and salvation,” Hassina continued.
“I was convinced by the message of the gospel. I immediately expressed my faith in Jesus and told about my desire to follow Him. I felt as if God had rescued me from a deep well, I experienced a deep peace inside my heart.”
However, Hassina’s conversion created problems, especially with her family. “I visited my family … and took the opportunity to share about my new faith with them. My parents became furious. My mother said that I was crazy in denying my religion and to follow the faith of the unbelievers. My father shouted at me, saying that I had disgraced the name of the family. My father presented me with a difficult choice. If I renounced Jesus, my father would accept me; if I would continue as a Christian, I would lose any relationship with my family.”
She did make a hard choice. “I could not deny Christ. I told my father that it was impossible for me to give up Jesus Christ, because He had saved me from hell and given me eternal life. When I gave this answer, my father immediately ordered me to get out of the house.”
- Pray for Algerian believers, like Hassina and her husband. Many have been rejected by their families and communities. Pray that they will have courage to stand firm in their faith and the comfort of belonging to the family of God.
- Pray for the ongoing access to Christian TV in Algeria and North Africa, that through that, many people will hear the Gospel and come to know their Father God.
Matthew 19 vs 29: “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold, and will inherit eternal life.”