Many people say they believe in Jesus, but what does it really mean to be a follower of Jesus?
Afshin Ziafat was born into a Muslim family and his Father was a very prominent figure is Muslim culture.
“He was the President of the Islamic Medical Society and all I was ever taught were the five pillars of the Islamic faith.”
Despite his upbringing, God penetrated his heart by using Afshin’s second grade teacher to plant the seed of the Spirit in his heart.
“She handed me a small New Testament and said, ‘You’re not going to understand this book now, but promise me you’ll read it when you’re older.’”
Afshin’s tutor was helping him learn English, and she used her connection with him to share the Gospel.
“She met a practical need and really used it as a bridge to introduce me to the Gospel.”
As Christians who are filled with the Holy Spirit, we are all capable of making an impact for Christ the way Afshin’s tutor did.
Ten years later, when Afshin was in high school he uncovered the book in his closet. He began to read the Bible and go to church in secret. Eventually, his father found out.
“He sits me down and he basically makes me choose between him and Christ, and by God’s strength alone I chose Jesus.”
At the age of 18, Afshin was disowned by his father. Even though he knew he made the right choice, he was still in despair.
“The definitive moment of my life is when I get up to my room and fell on my face and said ‘God, how could you let this happen?’”
The Lord led Afshin to a passage in Matthew where Jesus says,
“For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law” Matthew 10:35.
Afshin was discovering what it really means to be a Christ-follower. As Christians, do we have the strength and courage to forsake all others, even our parents, in order to follow Christ?