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Editor's Note: This testimony comes firsthand from a Muslim-background believer in North Africa.
When Fatima* was only a few years old, she began praying to God. With her little cupped hands lifted up, she asked that He would heal her because she was very weak and couldn’t walk yet. At 3 years old, God answered her prayer.
At 10 years old, Fatima contracted diphtheria. A friend suggested she see a doctor who had recently finished his studies. With the doctor’s help, Fatima's health returned. The young doctor was killed just one week later.
At 14, Fatima experienced major complications with her monthly cycle. She was bedridden for several weeks with excessive bleeding. After trying countless remedies, she visited a Jewish rabbi. Within days, her health was restored. Ten days later, her father passed away suddenly.
During the tumultuous period of her life that followed, Fatima had three dreams, or visions.
The first vision was that Jesus was inside Fatima’s house. He was dressed in a white robe, and with His hands lifted up to heaven, He said to her, “My poor daughter.” She could feel an immeasurable tenderness and love in His eyes and voice.
The same week, she dreamed she had died and was being carried out of her house on a stretcher. Her family was crying and following the body, but Fatima suddenly sat up on the stretcher and told them, “Don’t worry, I have eternal life.”
The third vision was of herself as a baby again, wrapped in swaddling clothes and laid on the windowsill. She later understood this to mean she could either choose to stay in darkness or choose to live in the light.
Fatima thought nothing of these visions until 40 years later, when she had another vision and this time understood it was Jesus.
Fatima’s daughter became a follower of Jesus while traveling abroad. “[My daughter] started bombarding me with Jesus,” she says.
Fatima responded by returning to what she knew from her own culture—Islam. She began praying in earnest and reading the Quran. She was torn between love for her daughter and her own search for truth.
For four years, Fatima continued to search and question, all the while feeling as if she was experiencing attack from Satan. Finally, when she was frustrated one day, she asked some Christians to pray for her. She even sent an email to a prominent televangelist requesting he pray for her.
That night, Fatima had a vision. In the vision, it was thundering and lightning outside, and her whole room was lit up. She felt great warmth throughout her body, but she could not speak. She saw the same Jesus she saw when she was teenager. She tried to switch on the light, but a heavy hand prevented her. Then Jesus appeared again, and this time she was able to switch on the light.
Fatima was utterly convinced Jesus was the true God, and she shouted, “Thank you, God! I’m a Christian now!”
She immediately turned on her television to the Christian network and heard the man on the screen quoting Matthew 4:4, which says, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God’” (NIV). She found the Bible her daughter had given her and began reading the book that, until now, had never made sense to her. It seemed as if the veil was removed from her eyes, and she consumed God’s Word.
“For two weeks, I ate nothing but [read] the Bible!” she says.
Then Fatima visited her aging mother. That night, her mother had a dream a man was knocking at the door. She told her son to be ready for the knock and to open it when the man came. When he opened the door, it was Jesus, dressed in a white robe, asking, “My son, do you want light?”
Four years later, Fatima’s mother became a believer. Her mother, who had been a very strict and harsh woman all of Fatima’s life, softened in her last years, even asking forgiveness from many she had hurt. During the last week of Fatima's mother's life, she could only speak the name of Jesus.
Fatima’s brother has still not become a believer, but he has recently woken twice from deep sleep believing he heard someone knocking at the door. Fatima prays for him and believes there is still hope he will answer.
Megan Ross is a photojournalism student passionate about telling the stories of how God is moving in our world. She is currently completing a three-month communications internship in the Middle East and is open to wherever the Lord leads next.
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