“We can see that God is working in Afghanistan through the messages we receive from viewers, which often bring tears to our eyes,” shares Panayiotis Keenan, Executive Director of SAT-7 PARS. Amazingly, despite all they have faced since the Taliban takeover, SAT-7 PARS viewers are experiencing transformation in God.
“We got an email from a young man who said, ‘I’ve watched your TV show for a couple of months, and I really like what you are teaching. I want to become like you.’ He wanted to be like us, to be a follower of Jesus,” says pastor and SAT-7 PARS presenter Shoaib Ebadi, relating an astonishing message from a viewer in Afghanistan.
Shoaib, who presents the live Dari-language programme Secret of Life, produced by partner Pamir Ministries, also shares that God is working in powerful ways through Christians on the ground. Sharing the Gospel with friends and family was a dangerous thing to do in Afghanistan before the Taliban took control, and Christians in Afghanistan are having to be even more careful and secretive now, according to Shoaib. Nevertheless, he says:
“Recently, a young man called our programme to tell us that before the Taliban came, he was sharing about Jesus and about the Bible, but his relatives and friends wouldn’t listen. After the Taliban took over, he says that now they are calling him, asking him to tell them more about Jesus!
“These may be dark days in Afghanistan, but this is God’s work. God’s people, believers, are sharing His light with others.”
AN EXTRAORDINARY RESPONSIBILITY
“Reading messages from our viewers in Afghanistan is both heartwarming and heartbreaking. They often bring tears to our eyes when we remember that they are contacting us at great personal risk.” says Panayiotis Keenan.
“People are contacting us just to have someone to talk to, or to receive Christian content, which is very difficult to access in Afghanistan,” Keenan continues.
“In many cases, we are the only means that our viewers have to access God’s Word. This is the work that SAT-7 is doing: reaching out to people, and providing them with the weapons of faith and of prayer. We are with them 24/7 through our programmes and Viewer Support team, a team that is dedicated to providing guidance, discipleship, prayer and hope. This is a great responsibility for us.”
FINDING PEACE IN JESUS
Following the Taliban takeover, SAT-7 received many messages from Christians and non-believers alike, expressing fear and despair, and concern for the lives of their families. Afarin*, a woman in Afghanistan, was one of them:
The situation in Afghanistan is beyond description and oppression has covered all of Afghanistan, to the extent a human being does not have the right over their own speech or dress. Two days ago, an Afghan military man I knew, and his brother were killed in their own home by the Taliban.
“I am the only believer in my family, and I came to faith about eight months ago. Please pray that the Lord will protect me from evil.”
Since then, Afarin has been in touch with SAT-7’s Viewer Support team, who have listened to her troubles and have sought to comfort her through prayer and God’s Word. Her most recent message to the team is a testament to how God is using the channel and working in people’s lives:
A thousand thanks to God that from the time I have been in contact with you, my faith has grown stronger every day. My patience and endurance have increased and when I remember and call on the name of Jesus, I find peace in my being. I have discovered that I am now gradually able to resist hopelessness and negative thoughts by standing in the name of Jesus. Thank you for continuing to stand with me.”
Praise God that He is at work among His people in Afghanistan. Please continue to pray for Christians and other vulnerable groups in Afghanistan, who dearly need our prayers.