Irfan was used to being able to take good care of his family. He was a karate and kung fu trainer, earning enough to provide for his entire family’s needs. He lived with his wife and two sons in a house that had been in his family for decades, in a Muslim neighborhood surrounded by close relatives. There was a mosque nearby, and his family went regularly to offer prayers.
Life felt like it was going well until tragedy struck two years ago; Irfan’s wife passed away due to heart disease. Unable to handle the pain, Irfan turned to alcohol and spent all of his money on it. He even started borrowing from others, which worsened to the point that Irfan became unable to send his sons to college.
Nobody came forward to help—and they even started to avoid and curse at Irfan, blaming him for his wife’s death. Irfan was shattered, and making matters worse, his adult sons threw him out of the family’s house.
Irfan began to hate his community and the teachings of the Quran. He stopped offering his daily prayers and became an atheist.
Feeling lonely and depressed, Irfan sat by himself at the market center one day. And as he did, he overheard two men – Church Planter Hanan and his mentor, Jagara – sharing about Jesus at an outdoor prayer meeting. When he heard one of them say that Jesus came for the forsaken, Irfan perked up. He met the men, and they invited him to have lunch with them at a nearby restaurant. Irfan was amazed that a stranger would do something so kind.
The three of them became friends, and Irfan asked Hanan and Jagara to visit his home for prayer. They did so regularly and began to share the Gospel with Irfan. Because of their friendliness and love for those around them, Irfan was receptive—and he felt peace in his heart when they prayed for him.
With time, Irfan joined the worshipping group led by Hanan. He later received Jesus as his Savior and was baptized!
Looking back, Irfan recalls, “When Hanan and Jagara came to my house, I understood the reality. I understood that the god I followed all these years wasn’t the real God and the Quran wasn’t real.”
Irfan is committed to his new faith in Jesus, but is facing opposition. When he was seen carrying a Bible, word got around and he was told to leave the house he rented. Then, a small shop he had opened was forced to shut down. Pray that God strengthens Irfan, that he will be a light in his community, and that his sons will welcome him back to their home.