“Behold, I am doing a new thing now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” – Isaiah 43.19

God is doing a new thing in our partnership of Desert Rain, a partnership that seeks to bring the gospel to the Arab world.

During my second mission trip to Desert Rain with Power to Change – Students this summer, I perceived a shift in the spiritual climate that occurred this past year. It seems that God is doing a new thing: students seeking out the Bible on their own, even though this is illegal, and students beginning new life-changing relationships with Jesus!

Our first meeting: Samaira

I met Samaira on my first day in the country after asking her for some directions. Instead of just giving myself and one of my teammates the directions, she showed us around her city for an hour and a half! A student of logistics and transport, as well as English. She is also an actress. When we met, I was jet-lagged, grumpy and not in a good mood. Praise be to God that he can use us even in our brokenness!

Samaira is a perfect example of a classic young woman from Desert Rain: hospitable, intelligent, modern and very religiously devout.

Her religious faith is such a great part of her cultural and personal identity that the second time we met together for tea, Karin and I found ourselves in a spiritual conversation almost immediately. After she spent a considerable time telling me about her faith, she asked about Christianity. I was able to share with her about who Jesus is and what he offers to us. She seemed curious, though not overly interested.

Our second meeting: The Scriptures

The next time Karin and I got together with Samaira, we spent a lot of time talking about her Holy Scriptures and the Bible.

It was in this meeting that we realized that her religion was not simply head knowledge to her; she believes in and loves her faith and its teachings.

Our last meeting: Eternity & Jesus

We connected with her one last time on our second last day in the country. What we expected to be an hour long conversation turned into two and a half hours! God moved beyond our wildest expectations. Karin and I shared the confidence we have that we will go to heaven when we die to be with Jesus forever. Samaira shared with us that, at best, she was only 60% sure of her eternal destination and was perplexed when we told her that we had 100% assurance of where we would go after death.

It opened the door for us to share the amazing truth of the gospel again: the significance of Jesus dying on the cross for our sins, the clean slate that we have as a result, and the relationship we can now have with God because of it. She asked question after question and marvelled at God’s love and grace, that he would go to such lengths to have a relationship with us.

It reached a point in the conversation where she began to repeat the truth about Jesus back to us because she wanted to know how to explain it to others. I can only imagine what an evangelist she will be when she embraces Jesus fully and puts her trust in his work on the cross for her. Even though she doesn’t yet know Jesus personally, she already wants to share this astounding truth with others!

We parted in tears. Samaira cried when we said our goodbyes because we were true friends, and she doesn’t have many of those. God has broken my heart for her, and I can see that she could have a life like Saul turned Apostle Paul.  Would you join me in praying for her salvation?

“It reached a point in the conversation where she began to repeat the truth about Jesus back to us because she wanted to know how to explain it to others.” – Maryliz

Join me in prayer

Please join me in praying as well for a revival to occur in this area of the world: for dreams and visions, for curiosity towards Christianity and for people to come to Christ. Local missionaries and church planters are praying that four million people in this region will come to know Jesus Christ as their only saviour by 2020. God is sovereign and he is able.

Rivers are flowing in the desert. Let us pray for rain to fall in the desert.

Would you join consider joining our team going to Desert Rain this summer?

You could be the first follower of Jesus someone meets. You could being praying for someone by name who has never been prayed for before. You could place the Word of God into the hands of someone who has never held a Bible.

Find out more about how you can be a part of what God is doing in the Arab world by clicking here.

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About the Author


Maryliz attended Queen’s University, majoring in psychology and minoring in chemistry. She first traveled to Desert Rain in 2014 on the P2C-S mission trip, and returned as an intern on the 2016 summer trip. She loves reading, writing, Zumba, movies, and chocolate ice cream! Her prayer is that one day the Arab world would be filled with people worshiping Jesus.

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