Just this week my friend S*’s name has appeared on a list—it is not a list for Grammy award nominations, or for the top 10 fastest growing churches in the states, nor for a latest best-selling book. It is not a list that pleases men. His name is on ISIS’ list. A fatwa. A death sentence edict.
Years ago, he “…was called…out of darkness into his wonderful light.” I Peter 2:9 Utilizing his background, his education, his knowledge and language ability, he has sought to be a modern day Harriett Tubman, leading many out of Islam through today’s ‘underground railroad.’ He has shined brightly for Jesus, too brightly according to ISIS—and they have determined it must be extinguished.
24-year-old Luqa Najati, was a newly-married man from the village of Jabali. He missed the birth of his one and only child, a daughter, while working in Libya. “My son travelled to Libya a year-and-a-half ago, immediately after his marriage – he did not even realise that his wife was pregnant when he left in search of a job,” his father said. “We hadn’t seen him since and now there is this news. His little daughter was born but he never saw her, we only sent her photos to him.” Luqa was not on a mission, he was about taking care of his family. But his light as well was shining, in an ever-so-humble and unpretentious way as he worked in construction. Yet nonetheless, it was enough to raise the wrath of ISIS.
How brightly do you and I shine for Jesus? On a wattage scale would it be 60? 75? 100? 40? Only the Lord knows how to measure those things. I see a difference in ‘wattage’ though between my friend S* and someone like Luqa—but that doesn’t mean that one is any less effective than the other. When it comes to darkness….and this, great darkness of ISIS, the contrast between light and darkness is stark. And it’s evil decrees will not tolerate ANY light shining.
“Light of the world, thank you for piercing my darkness, for rescuing me from eternal separation from You. As this world grows darker still, Jesus I ask you to burn brightly in and through me—whether it reaches scores, or simply a handful, may I burn for you all my days until my candle has reached the end of it’s wick. Ya Rabbi Yasou,” (‘My Lord Jesus’) Amen.