Paul, one of the earliest Christian leaders, was no stranger to prison. When locked up in a cell in Rome, he wrote “God’s Word is not chained.” Today, that truth is a reality being felt by those in prisons across Central Asia.
Asel* (39) works with orphans in prison in Kazakhstan. His work is supported by Open Doors. “I have heard hundreds of desperately sad stories,” she says. “After years spent in orphanages, these children usually enter a life of crime. Many end up in prison. After prison, they often return to the criminal life. This is a vicious cycle.”
But the Christian books that Open Doors is provides, with the help of our supporters, are beginning to break that cycle. “We are so grateful that Open Doors provides us with such amazing tools,” says Asel eagerly. “Munira*, a teenage girl who was imprisoned for murder, asked me to provide her with a couple of Christian books. I gave her one called ‘Time to Love, Time to Forgive’ by a Russian pastor, and two other books. She took all three! I did not expect her to read them but she did.
You have a loving God. I do not want to be the evil person I once was.
“After three weeks Munira came to me in tears. She gave me a hug and whispered, ‘I used to live in hatred. I was angry at my parents who abandoned me when I was a baby. I was angry at the workers in the orphanage, angry at my classmates, and angry at the world. I was angry at God. After reading the books you gave me about God’s love for sinners and after witnessing your love for me, I began to realise why you are so nice. You have a loving God. I do not want to be the evil person I once was. I want to be a loving and forgiving person, just as Christ taught us to be.’”
Munira has since become a Christian, praying that she would Jesus as her Lord! She will remain in prison for at least two more years, but during that time, Asel will be spending time with her, teaching her what it means to follow Jesus.
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imprisoned, falsely accused, and hated simply for following Jesus.