The Real Pain

‘While I was wallowing in self-pity, focused on myself, there was a whole world with literally billions of people who had no idea who God is, how amazing He is, and the wonders He has done for us. They are the ones who are really suffering. They don’t know His hope, His peace, and His love that transcends all understanding. They don’t know the message of the Gospel. After loving us with the most humble life and the most horrific death, Jesus told us, “As I have loved you, go and love one another.” How could I consider myself a follower of Jesus if I was not willing to live as He lived? To die as He died? To love the unloved and give hope to the hopeless?’

Nabeel Qureshi, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus

This excerpt comes from the story of a remarkable young man named Nabeel Qureshi. Nabeel was raised in a loving and devout Muslim family. But in college he encountered a friend named David Wood, who patiently and lovingly challenged Nabeel’s Muslim faith over a period of years. After a time of intense questioning and research, Nabeel gave his life to following Jesus. His newborn passion for Christ led him to complete several degrees in Christian apologetics and to devote his energy to proclaiming the Christian gospel to a wide variety of audiences.

Nabeel went on to devote the next few years of his life to sharing the love and beauty of the story of Jesus with thousands of people. The devotion he showed us more than matched up to the words he wrote here, in his earlier reflections.

Last year Nabeel was diagnosed with advanced stomach cancer. After a short and vicious battle with stomach cancer, his love-filled labour here in this world came to an end. Nabeel went on to be with Christ on 16 September 2017.

Those of us familiar with his writings are still reeling from the impact of this news. In the midst of the turmoil, I want to point us back to these words and to the essence of the legacy that Nabeel leaves behind.

His short life is the picture of true and total faith that our world needs to see.

His short life is the picture of true and total faith that our world needs to see. He was not afraid to ask the daring and difficult questions about life and reality. He was not afraid of the fact that his honest pursuit of truth might lead to loss of or damage to some of his dearly held comforts and traditions. He was not afraid to enter into the suffering of people around him. He wasn’t afraid to be honest about the pain he saw in them, the same pain he saw in himself.

Above all, he was not afraid to lay himself completely on the line for his Saviour. Heart, soul, emotions, and comforts—he opened himself completely to the world as he suffered physical pain and kept continually pointing to Jesus.

Nabeel’s death is a deep tragedy. But he himself understood that it is not the main tragedy we need to focus on today. Nabeel points us to the true pain of this world—a world that is suffering without true hope. A world in need of both the healing words and the healing hands of the Saviour.

Let us hurt and mourn the loss of this dear brother. Let us pray for his parents, his sister, his wife, and his daughter. And in the midst of this pain, let us be more than ever reminded of the pain that weighed down his heart to carry the good news of Jesus to the end of the earth. Let us be burdened with love for those who need to hear the good news proclaimed and to see that good news incarnated in our deeds of love and mercy. Let us continue his labour of love, knowing that our days are short.

About the author

Andrey Bulanov

Andrey Bulanov is a 26 year old juggling life at full speed. He is a husband to Liya Bulanov, and a father to Gracie and Nathan. He works as a registered nurse. He is also a pastoral intern at Living Word Bible Church in Bellingham WA, where he oversees youth and college ministries. Throughout his busy 20’s he has also had a passion and commitment to writing regularly at his blog Well Said, which focuses on effectively communicating the christian faith in today's secular culture.

MORE GREAT READS FROM

The Real Pain

‘While I was wallowing in self-pity, focused on myself, there was a whole world with literally billions of people who had no idea who God is, how amazing He is, and the wonders He has done for us. They are the ones who are really suffering. They don’t know His hope, His peace, and His…

Recent Articles

Mass Anthem

Mass Anthem is a Christian pop band originally from the Chicagoland area now located in Nashville, Tennessee. The trio is comprised of brothers, Chad and Tyler Sowards, as well as Joey Atansio. Their debut album, Alive, was released in June 2014 followed by their most recent record, Through People Like Me, released in January 2018….

That Christian Vlogger

Justin Khoe, also known as That Christian Vlogger, isn’t afraid of controversy. On his YouTube channel, he tackles tough topics like women in ministry, homosexuality and politics. He investigates what the Bible really says about them, and debates the big issues with his viewers, and even other YouTubers. ‘I like to talk about subjects that…

The Role Patience Plays

But let patience have her perfect work, that you may be perfect and entire, lacking in nothing. James 1:4NKJV For something to be ‘perfect’ it has to be 100%, it has to be complete. So for patience to work you need to let it work till it’s complete—all 100% of it. You can’t decide half…

Testimony: Caleb Stephens

Mental health is an uncomfortable topic. It feels especially taboo in Christian circles. But truth is millions of Christ-loving people of all ages worldwide suffer from depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts. I’ve fought depression for the last five years, worked with individuals suffering mental illness on the streets, saved people from the brink of suicide…

Donate to vision

Over 80% of our income is from the freewill gifts of wonderful people just like you.
So thank you for helping. Your generous support is 'Connecting Faith to Life'.