When Taimoor decided to divorce his wife and leave his Muslim life in Iran, he believed he and his son, Davar, had a better future waiting for them in Europe. So they began their journey. From Bulgaria to Serbia to Hungary, they searched for their dream life.
After a brief time in Bulgaria, Taimoor and Davar illegally crossed the border into Serbia. Authorities apprehended them and placed them in a shelter for migrants. God was waiting to meet them there. He sent Luka, a Bible teacher, to share the Gospel with them. Luka also helped find resources to meet their physical needs.
“Luka’s genuine concern stirred up a desire for us to learn more about God and His Word,” Taimoor says. “We couldn’t get enough of the Bible. Some of us in the shelter read it all night long! Then we would get up early to pray together.” He and his son believed in Jesus as their Lord and Savior, and they were baptized.
Some of the believers decided to escape from the shelter, but Taimoor stayed and began sharing the Gospel with new migrants who arrived. He even saw the power of God heal his son from a hearing loss.
God continued His miracles in Taimoor’s life when they moved on to a migrant shelter in Hungary. Taimoor’s talents as an artist gave him a way to share the Gospel with more people. A filmmaker heard about their story and produced what became an award-winning film about their life.
Taimoor and Davar continue to live in the shelter in Hungary. “God is using me to bring more people to Christ in ways I would have never dreamed,” Taimoor says. “I consider my current situation as a huge blessing from God.”
A bold dream changed Tanja’s entire focus. She wanted to leave her home country of North Macedonia and start a new life. She didn’t know how or even why this dream controlled all her actions and decisions. But there was one certainty for her. Making this dream come true for her and her family — her husband, Iko, and her daughters, Lina and Mona — depended solely on her and her efforts.
Tanja and her family spent many years living apart from God. She allowed the dream of leaving her country to control everything in their life together. “I wanted what was best for my family,” she says. “I never asked them what they thought or wanted. They were supposed to accept what I wanted for them as the best solution and path for their lives.”
Difficult battles — with herself and the world around her — filled her days. “I was always unsatisfied, frustrated and tired,” she recalls. “I felt like everything was against me. I fought hard. Whenever I fell, I would get up and fight again.”
In moments of agony, Tanja would call out to God. She knew He was there, but she didn’t know Him as her Lord and Savior. Then, she would continue pursuing her own goals.
She travelled this path for three years, waiting for her dream to happen. “I took care of my obligations, but I wasn’t really present in my life,” she says. “I had already moved away in my mind.”
Finally, her husband, Iko, took a firm stand. He told Tanja that there were no conditions under which their family would leave North Macedonia. He warned her never to mention her dream again. She was in shock.
“My purpose for life and all my hopes collapsed, just like a tower of cards,” Tanja says. “My dream, the only glimmer of light in my life, was extinguished. I gave up on my life.”
In the midst of her despair, God began to reveal His plans to Tanja and Iko. Through their friends, Igor and Radmila, they learned about a place where a group of people met to study the Bible together.
When Tanja and Iko arrived at the group meeting that first evening, they noticed the love, respect and kindness of the group right away. “I thought they were pretending,” Tanja says. “I soon realized they are the kind of people I want to be around.”
As Tanja and Iko continued to attend the Bible study, God’s Word began to change them. Tanja experienced a new hunger for life and a renewed desire to continue living in North Macedonia.
“Now, I know I am not alone here,” she says. “Jesus is with me. I have a new life with God. The old life has died, and now everything is new. The fullness of eternal joy flows in me today.”
Living conditions were difficult on the farm where 28-year-old Carine (first from the left) grew up in a village in Armenia. After she got married, the struggle to make a living continued. Although her husband was a very good furniture maker, there was not much work in the village. “There were days when we gave the last piece of bread to our two sons, and my husband and I were starving,” she shares.
Carine and her husband made the tough decision to leave the village and move to a large town over 100 miles away to try and make a better life for their family. They had no idea the eternal impact that decision would have on their lives!
One of their new neighbors told Carine about a church in the town that held a summer day camp for the children. Carine’s husband said that she should go with the boys, because “we don’t know what they are being taught there.”
“On the first day of camp, I was so impressed that I stayed with my children the entire time. It was a unique environment where the children were treated with warmth and love,” Carine recalls. “I learned that God is a Living God, that He is a God of love. The next day, the organizers not only allowed me to be present, but also offered to let me participate, helping to prepare the children's food and supervise the games.”
After camp was over, Carine and her family began attending the church. “That church became my second home,” she says. “We just finished a Bible study program, and now I have my own Bible! When we started praying as a family, things changed a lot. Now, we no longer go to sleep hungry; God cares for our needs, and we live a life of glory for His name."
Koni, a wife and mother in Bulgaria with a six-year-old child, was diagnosed with an advanced form of cervical cancer at just 33 years old. During surgery, the doctors determined that nothing could be done to reverse the disease. The metastasis was too widespread to remove all of the cancer. They released her, telling her that she had little time left.
Koni lost her appetite and suffered from chronic bleeding and sleep deprivation. She fell into a depression and couldn’t properly care for her family. One day, she sat on a bench outside the house, where her child couldn’t see her, and burst into tears. That’s when God brought Maria into her life!
Maria had been a church member for many years, but had never really reached out to share the Gospel with others. She was generally a quiet woman, occupied with her own problems. Recently, however, she had completed one of our Bible study courses, where she learned that every Christian is called to serve as a witness, not just ordained ministers. So, Maria shared Christ with Koni, prayed for her, and invited her to come to church.
After meeting Maria, Koni ate with appetite for the first time in months. Then, she went to church. The entire congregation prayed for her, and that night, Koni slept peacefully, free of pain.
A few days later, she was scheduled to undergo another surgery. When Koni went for her pre-surgery checkup, the doctors could not find any traces of cancer in her body! After her doctor gave her the news, Koni broke down in joyful tears and witnessed to him about the new life she had received in Christ.