Michael, an Open Doors fieldworker in the Middle East, shares this story on how prison walls cannot keep out our prayers.
“Nadia was for some months in a prison because she is a believer. One of our workers met her and she told him her story. On one occasion she had told the prison officials that she would not give them any information about the people she knew or about her husband, only about herself. This had led her to being placed in an isolation cell for 4 days. This cell measured just 2x3m. ‘It was extremely cold’, she told the co-worker, ‘and there were no toilet or washing facilities. At one point, I was feeling very cold and found the whole experience tough. Suddenly, I felt warm air blowing me in my face, so warm in fact that when I breathed in and the air hit my lungs I had to cough.’
“She had no idea where the warmth was coming from, and, at the same time, found herself becoming very joyful. This sense of joy overwhelmed her so much that she began to dance in the cell. Yet, at the same time, she also felt confused. How could she feel warm and joyful in a cold prison cell she asked herself? ‘Then I heard a voice’, she emphasized that it wasn’t an internal voice but audible, ‘as if someone in the room cell was saying: ‘That is because people are praying for you. This is the spirit of happiness that has come upon you, receive it.’’
“Later on, after her release, Nadia shared her experience in the cell with her sister. When asked when it had happened (day, time, etc), her sister mentioned the exact day and time that 32 believers had met to pray for her and another prisoner. Two of the participants had been set aside to represent Nadia and the other Christian, the remaining 30 gathering around them to ask God to comfort them, to fill them with joy and send His spirit of happiness upon them.”
Michael concludes; “The testimony turned out a big encouragement to this prayer group and all other groups that bow their knees for Christians in comparable situations.”
We give you thanks and praise, Lord, for the miraculous encouragement that Nadia received in answer to believers' prayers for her. We pray that we would be encouraged by this to continue steadfastly in prayer for our persecuted brothers and sisters throughout the world, and that they would receive that same spirit of joy that Nadia described. Amen
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