Center Jap Christians hear the gospel via social media

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Social media are used to spread the gospel in Middle Eastern countries that are hostile to the Christian faith(Photo: Open Doors UK)

Every day this week, Christian Today tells stories of persecuted Christian women who have relied on Christ and strengthened them to overcome the incredible difficulties they faced. Today we tell the story of Mariam, a young Christian in the Middle East who, despite her incredible risk to herself, shared Christian devotions to encourage people during Covid-19:

When the coronavirus hit the Middle East, fear and fear also crept in.

To bring hope, Mariam *, a young Christian, started a series of Bible studies in which people could find encouragement.

Now their devotions and messages of hope reach more than 3,000 people every day and bring them words of strength and comfort.

Mariam is one of the women the Open Doors UK & Ireland Anti-Persecution charity honors by celebrating the way they have faced the persecution with courage.

"I've seen a lot of people on social media who were scared about the coronavirus," Mariam said. "By sharing Bible verses and devotions, we want to give people hope."

Since Mariam started her devotional series, more than 3,000 people have signed up to see her, and her team has reached out to at least 100 people to have in-depth discussions about their fears and how belief in God is a beacon of light Hope can be.

Mariam has not shied away from difficult questions in the devotions she sends out every day. Many of the topics deal with different types of fear and how to deal with it. The devotions have battled the spread of Covid-19, the fear of losing a loved one, the fear of financial consequences and the fear of isolation.

Each day, subscribers will receive an audio message with Bible verses, a reflection based on those verses, and a prayer. Occasionally a question is included to help listeners apply the message to their lives.

"Somebody told me that she waited every day for this audio message to be sent to her," said Mariam. "I encouraged her not only to listen to prayer, but also to actively pray, talk to God, and read the Bible.

"This was a new experience for her as she came from a Christian family that was not used to it."

Mariam and her team also actively offer to chat with other young people via social media and have deeper conversations about what is troubling them.

She said: "It was shocking to hear about the deep fears people are dealing with.

"Everyone reads the bad news about the coronavirus and the many deaths.

"Some people explain the Bible differently, believing that the coronavirus is a punishment from God or the end of times. Another feared that he was too far from God to be forgiven.

"We try to help people find out that God loves them and that it is never too late to relate to God.

"Yes, it is a major crisis and it is normal to be afraid. But we want to give people hope and take the step to have a relationship with God."

* Mariam's real name cannot be disclosed for security reasons, and neither can the country in which she lives.

As part of Open Doors & # 39; Rise with Courage Week, which celebrates Christian women who have been persecuted, the charity is hosting a live Instagram event on Wednesday August 19 at 1 p.m. Rachel Gardner, spokeswoman and president of the Girls Brigade. Follow @opendoorsuk

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