Alia’s mom carefully carried away our empty coffee cups and plates on a beautiful tray as we finished our 2-hour tutoring session. We’d been meeting weekly and it’s become the best, most encouraging time for my language growth, and our relationship has blossomed into such a sweet friendship.

Often when Alia tells me about what’s going on in her life and some of her problems, I tell her that I will pray for her. My compassion for her has always wanted to pray over her on the spot, but my insecurities in Arabic always talked me out of it.

But today is the day, led by the Spirit and feeling confident in Arabic, that I ask, “Can I pray for you? Now?” Without hesitation, she responds, “OF COURSE!” As I pray for her, my heart rejoices that I get to pray over her and my mind rejoices that it’s actually possible! I can’t believe I have enough Arabic to finally articulate the compassion I’ve had all along. After I pray over Alia, I look up at her, and through her tear-filled eyes, she tells me how important I am to her. I encouraged her that God loves her and cares for her.

I am so thankful for the opportunity to work diligently on my Arabic, especially when it involves praying over friends in the Arabic I have so far! This moment was a win of firsts. It was the first time I prayed over a friend in Arabic and, potentially, Alia’s first time ever being prayed over in the name of Jesus.

Pray that seeds from experiences like these will bear fruit for years to come as I and my fellow workers develop our language abilities and proclaim Jesus to our friends and neighbors.

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