She hungered for a personal relationship with God, but her attempts to follow all the rituals and practices of Islam left her empty. During college studying in France, she found a loving God who satisfied her deepest yearnings.
“As a child and as a teenager I truly believed Islam was from God,” says Wafa, who grew up in a secular Muslim family in Morocco. “I truly believed Muhammad was a prophet from God and that he was the best prophet,” she notes. “I had high esteem for Islam and for Muslims.”
In her teens, a disquiet in her soul led to further exploration of her beliefs. “I was thirsty for a personal relationship with God and I thought it would happen through Islam, so I started studying Islam in depth,” she says.
“One of the things that struck me in the Quran was the description of hell as a lake of fire, with people crying and screaming,” Wafa recalls. “I really didn’t want to go to that place.”
Wafa thought if she didn’t obey God, he would throw her into hell. “I always had questions about my final destiny, where I would end up.”
In search of deepened fellowship with God, she prayed five times a day and fasted during Ramadan. After six months of focused effort to draw closer to God, she came to a surprising conclusion: “I was as empty as before and even worse.”
Mark Ellis is a senior correspondent for ASSIST News Service and the founder of www.Godreports.com. He is available to speak to groups about the plight of the church in restricted countries, to share stories and testimonies from the mission field, and to preach the gospel.