The majority of western Christians are virtually clueless when it comes to the struggles of what it means to bear the name of Christ, in other countries. This book, Freedom’s Stand, is more an education in what is is like to live in Afghanistan, the mystery and the terror of what it means to be a follower of Christ behind the veil of Islam.
In this sequel to “Veiled Freedom,” I became reaquainted with Amy Mallory, a relief worker who has returned to Kabul, to the New Hope Foundation compound, that she had been previous director of , and had been founded to give the oppressed women and children of Kabul, Afghanistan, a better future. She is shocked and dismayed at the changes, that have occured, and is joined in her struggle by Steve Wilson, a special ops vetern, who is working under contract as a security contractor for the Minister of Interior, Khalid. Also, I met Jamil, who had repented of his former life of jihad, and became a health worker, going from town to town, healing the needs of those he encounters, while spreading the Good News of Isa Masih, Jesus the Christ.
The intertwining of these three lives is woven into a riveting and factual account of what it means to take a stand for Christ in a place where the very mention of His name can cost you your life.
In this passage, Jamil has been arrested and is being held in prison on charges of being an apostate. He is speaking with Amy and has just explained that the only way he will be released is by assuring them that Isa Masih, Jesus, is not God, but only a holy man and prophet. Then the mullahs will release him. (a mullah is an official trained in religious law and doctrine). He has asked Amy what he should do…
“Amy’s hands were twisting under the chador even as she shook her head, “Jamil, I couldn’t begin to tell you what to say. Especially when you’re in here, and I – I am free! You must say what you believe in your heart. But I can tell you what I know in my own heart to be true. What you’ve read for yourself in the injils of Isah Masih,” (The Injil is the Arabic name for The original Gospel of Jesus Christ).
Jamil reminds me so much of one who is truly right now, in an Iranian prison for the same offense, awaiting execution, Youcef Nadarkani, who has also refused to racant his faith to Christ. He has been in prison over 1000 days, leaving his wife Fatima and his two sons.
This is what it truly means to follow Christ, not this watered down westernized idea that we have, that being a believer will give us everything we have ever wanted, and that salvation is a free gift, bestowed upon us like a genie granting the wishes of our vain lips.
No….to be a follower of Christ means giving our lives away, however and in whatever way He directs us. We just have to get our wallets out of our ears, that we might hear him.
J.M.Windle has heard Christ calling through the plight of those trapped in hellfires of Afghanistan. May we hear Him as well, and answer the call when our time arrives. I pray I won’t miss Him.
Read “Veiled Freedom” first, then “Freedom’s Stand.” You will be changed.