When she saw her father had collapsed, Ruth heard a voice say, “Put your hand on your father” and to her amazement her father immediately got up. When her father had recovered, he fell to his knees and cried out in a loud voice, “God forgive me, Jesus I will follow You!”
For Muslim background believers (MBB’s), there are many ways God chooses to speak to them and one of these ways is through dreams and visions. It was no different for Ruth who although she was brought up by devout Muslim parents, at a certain point in her life, God would speak to her through a miraculous situation.
Schooled in the teachings of Islam and praying five times a day, Ruth had no interest at all in Christianity. All she said was she hated Christianity! At times evangelists tried to share the Gospel with her but she rejected them. However, God is patient and He waits for the perfect time to speak to a person’s heart and He was preparing her.
Her father’s employer recommended that Ruth be educated at a Christian school as the academic qualifications would provide her with greater opportunities for future employment.
Ruth’s heart changes
Ruth decided to challenge one of the school’s Christian evangelists and intended to put his God to the test, “If your religion can convert my Muslim family then I will also convert!” And believing this would never happen, Ruth had a smile of satisfaction on her face.
It was Saturday and Ruth was about to attend a special course only to find it had been cancelled. As she left the classroom, she heard singing. There was something about the words, they were gentle and she stayed, allowing the melody to enter her heart.
Ruth knew that the singers were the Christian students and they were singing a Christian song but she couldn’t draw herself away. Listening to the song, she began to weep.
A friend approached Ruth and tried to comfort her. An older student from the singing group came to Ruth to share God’s love and His promise that all who believe in Him will go to heaven.
Suddenly Ruth’s Muslim beliefs surfaced and once again she tried to push away the words the Christian was saying. “No! I don’t like it! I pray five times a day but we still do not have the guarantee that we will go to heaven. How come you believe in one person and know you will go to heaven?”
That evening as Ruth prayed it was somehow different and suddenly she had a vision and a voice said, “Do not pray to any other god but to the God of Abraham and Jacob.”
Was that the voice of God? Was it the voice of Jesus? Ruth knew about Abraham and Jacob but she could not believe that Jesus is God. She had been taught that Jesus was just a prophet and so thought the voice must have been that of Allah.
A week had passed since she heard the singing. A Christian student gave her a Bible and said, “This is for you. Read it.” Comparing the Bible with the Koran, Ruth discovered similarities, however reading the Scriptures made her happy and brought her peace.
Ruth finally came to understand that the vision she had seen and the voice she had heard was indeed Jesus.
The Bible was trampled on!
Suddenly her father entered her room and seeing the Bible open he flew into a rage, threw the Bible on the floor and began stomping on it. Her father then began beating her. He threw her onto the bed and stormed out of the room only to return with a bucket of water and threw it over her. Her mother witnessed all that was happening but kept silent, too afraid to interfere.
The following day, Ruth’s father gave her some water to drink. This was unusual, in her culture as fathers never serve but Ruth thought he was showing kindness to her. But she was wrong. Ruth’s father had gone to a witch doctor to obtain some poison with the intent of killing his daughter.
Ruth took the water and drank and again she heard a voice saying, “Though you drink death you will not die!”
Ruth’s father had embraced witchcraft and wore amulets and talismans believing he had a power that could destroy people. As he took Ruth’s hand he expected something to happen to her but when nothing happened he said, “What power do you have?” He then placed his amulets on her body waiting for a reaction but still nothing happened, instead he was the one who collapsed on the floor, exhausted.
From darkness to light
When she saw her father had collapsed, Ruth heard a voice say, “Put your hand on your father”. To her amazement her father immediately got up. When her father had recovered, he fell to his knees and cried out in a loud voice, “God forgive me, Jesus I will follow You!”
Ruth was so elated that she burst into tears. All the family witnessed what had just happened and her father told them they would no longer be reading the Koran, “We will follow Jesus.” The family are still praying five times a day but not to Allah. They are now praying to Jesus.
Now as Ruth reads her Bible, she knows that Jesus is the true God that became a man who walked upon the earth. Relatives heard the news of their conversion and have totally rejected them while their neighbours called them infidels and threw excrement at their house. Being persecuted has not caused the family to waver in their newfound faith.
Ruth attended a Bible school and after two years received her diploma. She immediately started planting a church which grew to 70 members, travelling to slum areas and buying vegetables from the people which gave her the opportunity to share Christ.
Gospel outreach despite opposition
The call to evangelise has always been Ruth’s passion and together with a team she went into West Papua and ministered to seven tribal groups. One village chief however, wanted to know if a servant of God would survive if they were given poison.
This was the second attempt on her life. Ruth ate the food and although she did not die, she now suffers from permanent kidney damage. The village chief was amazed yet he remains unconverted. Ruth however, continues to share the Gospel and in total, has visited West Papua another eight times.
On her return home, Ruth decided to buy some land and build a church. Although a small community mosque existed on the land, it was unused and Ruth proceeded to pull down the dome and convert the mosque into a church. Currently over 40 believers are attending every Sunday and on Thursdays she runs a discipleship course.
Sadly, Ruth’s kidneys started to fail and for the past five years she has had to undergo dialysis treatment twice a week and have up to two injections a week each costing $30. Despite the challenges, Ruth continues to smile and never complains as she believes it is a privilege God has chosen her to evangelise in her district.
This amazing woman of God continues to share God’s Word and shepherd the believers in her church. She has put her medical situation to one side and continues to serve her loving Master. As we spoke to Ruth, she asked nothing of us however, VOM Australia is seeking to raise funds to provide for her weekly dialysis and injections. If you would consider supporting Ruth, your financial gift will be designated for her through VOMedical. Donate to VOMedical .
Please pray for Ruth’s medical treatment, her family and her church.