Argen, 21, is a university student from Almaty and the youngest of three children whose parents were divorced. “Our mother did her best in raising us while our father was totally out of the picture,” Argen writes. “We didn’t always have money for things like gifts for birthdays and holidays like the other kids at our school. I’m not trying to complain about it, since we learned a lot through those challenging times … In your broadcasts you talk about giving to others in need, and I connect with this a lot. I feel blessed by God and now I love giving birthday gifts to disadvantaged kids.”

FEBA Kazakhstan’s path has not been smooth. In addition to the challenge of sharing the Good News in a majority Muslim country, they must also contend with a lingering anti-religious sentiment among older people, a relic from Kazakhstan’s years in the Soviet Union. Officially, the Kazakh government recognises freedom of religion, yet the stipulations of its 2011 Religion Law include the following: religious communities must register to gather for worship; places of worship can only be constructed with the local government’s approval; the government may supervise children’s religious education; and praying in the workplace is prohibited. Still, amid these difficult circumstances, God continues to work His miracles.

Faithful servants

The government has consistently refused to grant FEBA an FM broadcasting license, so God opened another door. Victor Akhterov, regional director of FEBA Eurasia, says: “In Kazakhstan we couldn’t get any FM licenses, so we invested heavily in social media and the new movement among the young Kazakh people was born. It’s so amazing to see.”

It truly is. FEBA Kazakhstan’s team comprises eight full-time staff and fifteen volunteers who produce content for TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook. In the past year, their videos have garnered approximately 4.8 million views. The team’s strategy involves using Muslim-background believers to share their testimonies. Their most popular video, titled “I was born in a Christian family”, currently has 1.1 million views on TikTok. In it, one of FEBA Kazakhstan’s team members shares how she came to Christ.

“Praise God, through this video we received a lot of feedback,” says a FEBA Kazakhstan team member. “People were interested in the Bible, asked about our faith, and some of them accepted Christ as their Saviour. Some of those who wrote to us [also] expressed a desire to visit a [Christian] church.”

Islam is becoming a trend among young people – it is considered cool to fast for Ramadan or pray at a mosque – but many of them are truly seeking the truth. FEBA Kazakhstan has requested that we pray for these young people to find Christ through their broadcasts, and that the older generation will also open their hearts to God’s Word. In the meantime, the team works hard to keep their content fresh and creative, always with an eye to further growth, but ever aware that God is in control.

“We call it ‘humble planning’,” says Victor Akhterov, “because it’s God who is performing those miracles. We are just there, trying to be faithful servants.”

Until all have heard,
Dr Jurie Vermeulen

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