by D, a new believer in Kosovo
Some say that to be a Kosovar is to follow the majority religion. But I never felt that was true for me.
I remember my senior year of high school there was this girl—a Christian. She spoke openly with me about her faith. I was interested, as I didn’t really know a lot about Christians. I defended her when other students would persecute her.
One day, she gave me a New Testament. I hid it in this little room at the back of our house. I would sneak out by myself to read. I had never heard anything like this before.
A short time later, war came to our village, forcing us to flee. When we returned, I found my Bible had been torn to shreds. Our property was burned to the ground.
I didn’t know how to pray. But I remember reading about this God who loves. I cried out for Him to save my village.
I Would Rather Die
In 2008, Kosovo gained independence. Very soon after, radical religious people started coming to try and influence our people. One local leader demanded that parents send their children for religious education in their place of worship.
Some of the leaders there were recruiting children to fight for them. I would rather die than see my children come to this fate. Like many in Kosovo, I wanted nothing to do with their religion. I had to find something different.
I remembered the stories I had read about Jesus. I decided that this might be the answer for me. I did some research and found the address of a pastor in the capital.
The night before our meeting, I had a dream about him. When I saw him face-to-face, he was as I saw him in my dream.
Had Never Read the Bible
As he shared with me from God’s Word, I knew it was true. After all these years, I knew I had finally found my true identity. I went home and shared everything with my wife.
I asked the pastor if a group could come from the church to share more about Jesus. A large group gathered in our garage and listened intently. There were many questions as nobody had ever read the Bible.
At the end of our time, 27 decided to follow Jesus. I felt my heart growing and growing. I thought it would explode. If I could have gathered 2,000 with me that day, I would have.
Word spreads quickly. People are curious. I have shared with groups in seven other villages. And many have been baptized.
Just a few days ago, I met with another large group. They have never had an opportunity to hear God’s Word like this. I think it’s only a matter of time before they are following Him, too.
We feel blessed to be the first believers in this village, to plant a church.
I want to ask you to pray for our faith to grow. Already, some have tried to intimidate us, to make us leave our faith or run us out of town. But with God beside us, we aren’t turning back.
Make a Difference
The group that went to D’s village to share more about Jesus included a C&MA international worker. As a result of that visit, they heard the gospel, believed, and were baptized. You can help even more people to receive spiritual, physical, and emotional support when you give a year-end gift to The Alliance. Watch this video and visit the Year-End web page to learn more.