Amira, from Malaysia, was a devout Muslim praying and reciting verses from the Koran daily until she began searching for truth and had a radical conversion to Christ.
Amira studied at a Catholic school as a child but refused to take part in any of the traditions. She told her Catholic friends that she would never join them for church or prayer.
After high school, she started a successful business, married a Muslim man and had two children. During this time, a friend gave her a Koran to read and told her to recite verses so that her business would become successful.
This started a daily ritual for Amira.
“I woke daily at 3am and recited the same verse 70 times and the 99 names of Allah listed in the Koran,” she says.
One day when she was reading, she noticed the Koran called Jesus the ‘Spirit of God’, while Mohammed was referred to as a ‘messenger’ and she began to question this.
She consulted three of her most knowledgeable Muslim friends.
“I asked them, ‘Between the Spirit of the Lord and the messenger – who is stronger?’ and all three agreed that the Spirit is stronger.”
Examining this, she started searching and began dreaming of Jesus who would speak to her. In one dream He said, “I will send you a helper to walk with you – the Holy Spirit.”
She then asked a Catholic friend to give her a Bible and her friend challenged her to read it within three months.
“Instead, I read it from Old to New Testament in three weeks and accepted the Lord into my life,” she said.
She soon joined a church and began helping and serving where needed. This meant cooking for the congregation weekly until her husband wondered why and questioned her about it. She told him she had become a Christian.
Her husband became angry and framed her for ‘mishandling their business’, reporting this to the authorities. She was sent to prison for seven days. She cries as she recounts her time in prison but says that God carried her through this trial.
There were 33 Filipino immigrants in the prison with her and all of them were Christians so they often encouraged each other and would worship together every night.
Upon her release, a police officer gave her money and told her, “This is a seed because you will be a blessing to many people.” She cried upon receiving it and vowed to tell her entire family about Jesus.
When she returned home, she discovered that her husband had left her for another woman, her business had been taken from her and she was left a single mother with two children.
She is now slowly rebuilding her life and has started a new business – although only Christians will support her. She believes her business will flourish as she puts God first in her life.
It has been a difficult journey but even after recounting all she lost, she remains full of faith.
“It is worthwhile to believe in God. Even though I paid a price, Jesus still deserves all the glory. His faithfulness is forever.”
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Recently, with the help of our supporters, Voice of the Martyrs has been able to support the Hope & Love School in Malaysia.
The Christian school has been open for four years and currently supports over 120 ‘stateless’ students. Many of these students are from Muslim backgrounds. Being stateless leaves them without legal documents that would have given them rights, including access to education. Many orphans or abandoned children whose birth parents are unknown end up stateless even if they have been legally adopted by Malaysian parents. As do many children of mixed marriages, children born before a marriage was registered and indigenous children.
Our contact in Malaysia reports:
The funding we have received has allowed us to pay the school rent for six months. It will cover the salary for four teachers and meals for the students, many of whom are from poor families.
We share God’s love to our students every day and have been able to build good relationships with their parents. We have been invited to many houses to pray and share God’s love. Many families are open to the Gospel, some have already accepted the Lord.
If you would like to financially support the work of Voice of the Martyrs, please go to: https://vom.com.au/donate
For more than a year, Malaysian pastor Raymond Koh has been missing. On 13 February 2017, masked men forced his vehicle to stop, pulled him from the car, and then drove away with both vehicles – all captured in broad daylight by CCTV cameras.
Despite widespread distribution of the video footage, there have been no demands and no word on Pastor Raymond’s whereabouts.
Just prior to his kidnapping, the pastor had been the victim of multiple threats, accusing him of preaching to Muslims. After Pastor Raymond’s disappearance, family members expressed concerns that the police were investigating the accusations against him rather than searching for his kidnappers.
Last March, an Uber driver named Lam Chang Nam was charged with attempting to extort money from Pastor Raymond’s family under the guise of providing the church leader’s safe release. At the time, however, it was determined that he was not involved in the kidnapping but was rather an opportunist. In an unexpected turn of events, Lam was arrested last month and charged with the pastor’s abduction.
Pastor Raymond’s wife, Susanna, questions the motive behind the recent charges, as there are concerns about the way the investigation has been conducted. Despite those uncertainties, she is publicly issuing a plea for his safe return while thanking the Malaysian public for their support. “My wish is for Raymond to be released so he can be reunited with his family, especially (during) this Chinese New Year,” expressed Susanna.
Sources: World Watch Monitor, Channel News Asia
- Ask the Lord to intervene and secure Pastor Raymond’s release (Psalm 91:14).
- Commit to the Lord, Susanna and family during this difficult time as they continue to wait for news.
- Pray that the truth will come forth during the upcoming court proceedings and justice will be served.
On 13 February, Pastor Raymond Koh King Too (62) was kidnapped in Petaling Jaya, near Kuala Lumpur by a group of masked men. No one has claimed responsibility for the kidnapping, nor have there been demands made for a ransom.
Owing to the lack of information surrounding the abduction, it is reported that the son of Pastor Koh has now filed a second police complaint stating his suspicion that his father has been murdered by his captors.
Pastor Koh, who has been involved in a community work project that provides help to single mothers, drug addicts, and people living with HIV and AIDS, was wrongfully accused by the Selangor Islamic Religious Department in 2011 for trying to convert Muslims to Christianity. The charges, however, were subsequently dropped due to a lack of evidence.
In addition to Pastor Koh, Pastor Joshua Hilmy, a former Muslim and ethnic Malay, also went missing along with his wife on 30 November 2016. Pastor Hilmy had received threatening phone calls in the lead-up to his disappearance.
Sources: World Evangelical Alliance, VOM Contacts, XYZ
- Pray the Lord will strengthen and protect Pastor Koh and Pastor and Mrs Hilmy. Pray they will be released from their captors.
- Pray God’s comforting presence will minister to their families, during this time of distress and uncertainty.
- Pray Christians in Malaysia will not succumb to fear but will remain faithful to their loving Lord and Saviour, even when they face danger.
Three Christians have gone missing in Malaysia – and friends fear they have been abducted because of their church work.
Pastor Raymond Koh was reportedly taken from his car in Petaling Jaya city last week. Another pastor and his wife, who have not been named, went missing a month ago, according to partners of Release International.
Pastor Raymond, who is of Chinese descent, has previously received threats from jihadists. Officials are denying all knowledge of their disappearance.
Christians in Malaysia are increasingly concerned about the growing threat to religious freedom. Parliament is currently debating a Bill proposing that parts of a strict Islamic penal code (hudud) are incorporated into the country’s legal system. Prime Minister Najib Razak supports the Bill, apparently to win favour among hard-line Muslims ahead of next year’s general elections.
Sources: Release International, Reuters, The Star
- Please pray for the immediate release of Pastor Raymond and the two other Christians who have been abducted.
- Ask God to give His peace to the kidnapped Christians’ families, including Pastor Raymond’s wife, Susanna, and their children.
- Pray that God’s people will stand firm in their faith as an Islamist political agenda gathers momentum in Malaysia.