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The Beauty of an Intimate God

The Beauty of an Intimate God

GERMANY — One day in language class, Crossworld worker Vanessa’s classmate Fatema shared some heartbreaking news. She had just lost her best friend in a targeted attack back in her home country.

Vanessa could immediately relate to Fatema’s grief. She herself had lived in Fatema’s country for a time and gone through a similar experience of losing a friend in regional violence. She remembered the pain of grieving alone, far from family and friends.

Knowing that her language classmates were the closest thing Fatema had to family in Germany, Vanessa invited them to gather for a memorial during their next class.

Vanessa prepared a snack typical for funerals in Fatema’s culture and purchased a plant as a gift for Fatema to remember her friend by.

At the next class, Vanessa called everyone together, “I know we all come from different faiths and traditions, but I believe prayer is important.”

Vanessa continued, “If you’re comfortable, you can pray in any manner in any language, or if you don’t want to pray you can just say encouraging words to Fatema. This is a chance to rally around her in support and love, and remind her that God and her friends are with her and she’s not alone.”

Vanessa led in prayer first, praying for Fatema, her friend’s family, and Fatema’s people who are persecuted in her home country. She ended the prayer in Jesus’ name.

When Vanessa finished praying, everyone stared at her.

For most if not all of them, this was a first: the first prayer in a language they understood, and the first prayer in a simple manner of speaking plainly to a loving God.

After the shock of the moment passed, they all started talking at once.

“We’ve never heard a prayer like that. Did you memorize it?” “You mean you just came up with it on the spot?” “Wow, nothing else needs to be said or prayed for.”

Vanessa’s prayer, though far from showy or eloquent, revealed the beauty of talking to an intimate God.

This one moment in language class has provided many more opportunities for Vanessa to share her faith with her classmates.

The people in this story are real, but their names have been changed to protect their privacy.

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