From ISIL Spy to Jesus Follower.
Several years ago, when ISIL threatened him and his family, Pastor Ghassan Thomas fled Baghdad and went to Turkey, where he started a church to reach out to other refugees.
However, one day, the ISIL sent a spy into his church, a man named Mohammed.
Mohammed had a specific role within ISIL: “When ISIL killed a family inside their house, my task was to go back and kill anyone who was still alive. I thought I had to do bloody things to be close to Allah. The Quran says that if you are not a Muslim, you should become one or we should kill you and take everything from you.”
Fighting between Sunni ISIL forces and Shiite militias often put Mohammed’s own life in danger, and so, for his safety, family members told him to flee to Turkey. There ISIL gave him the assignment to go and spy on Pastor Thomas’ church.
However, the response of the Church members surprised Mohammed. They received him warmly and showed him love. When they prayed for him, it changed his life.
“I started to cry like a child,” Mohammed recalls. “It felt like something very heavy came out of my body. When I went home after the service, I felt there was a person walking with me. He was carrying me, almost like I was flying.”
Mohammed began reading the Bible and comparing it to the Quran. “I discovered the true God, and this is what I want for my life,” he says.
- Give thanks for Mohammed, and for the many other reports of ISIL members turning to follow Christ. Pray for their protection, protection over their families, and for their faith and trust in Jesus Christ to grow strong.
- Give thanks for Pastor Thomas’ church in Turkey, and form any other churches in Turkey as they reach out to refugees, for encouragement, compassion, strength and for the resources they need to meet not only the physical need of the refugees, but the Spiritual and emotional needs too.
- Pray for many refugees to hear the Gospel and have life changing encounters with Jesus Christ.
- Pray for an end to the conflicts in Syria and Iraq, that refugees may be able to return to their homes and cities, taking with them their new found faith, the love of Christ and His healing transforming power for their communities and nations.
Romans 1 vs 16: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel; it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who has faith, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.