Mental health is in decline in Afghanistan, especially for women. Recent reports show that the country is on the brink of a “mental health catastrophe” for young girls, many of whom have been forced out of schools and into arranged marriages. After just one year under Taliban rule, one in four girls have shown signs of depression or anxiety, and two-thirds of children, in general, say they have they felt negative feelings including worry, sadness, and anger.
Through God’s guidance and provision, we have been able to evangelize for nearly two years in Afghanistan; sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ and teaching the people about His love for them using the Dari and Pashto languages.
As mental health declines around the world, many Afghan people feel lost or worthless in the oppressive culture they currently live in. We believe that all people have inherent worth, which is why it is so crucial to continue our important work in Afghanistan. We are able to share through radio broadcasting to millions of listeners in their native tongue, sharing the Good News of Christ and teaching them that Christ died for them. By showing them that a powerful, loving God sacrificed Himself for them, listeners learn how important they are to Christ. It is our hope that they will see those around them — including their daughters — in a different light and take their mental health seriously.
God has recently opened another door to have a second Afghan radio program, this one geared to reach children directly. Many children in rural parts of the region do not have access to the Christian message. Our main objective in producing this radio program is to reach impoverished areas around the Arab world where there is no Christian education, and specifically to reach impoverished areas where there are currently no Sunday School opportunities available.
We are encouraged to have already heard from some listeners who have responded and emphasized how the message of the program has changed their lives for the better.
One listener commented, “One of my friends asked me to listen to your radio program, and I came to know the value of life and the importance of knowing God from your program. The messages were heart touching. One day, a pastor invited me to a church meeting. Out of curiosity I joined it, but I never knew that it would change the course of my life. I have received real joy and peace through faith in Jesus in my life.”
“I have listened to your program several times through the radio,” another listener wrote. “I like this program for many reasons. I developed an interest to know the true God. Jesus Christ was explained to us beautifully. Having understood all this, I asked Jesus for forgiveness and trusted Him as my only God and savior.”
Praise God that people are responding to the message and understanding how important the health and well-being of every individual is. We will continue to be diligent in proclaiming the Gospel throughout the region until every last person has heard the Good News or Christ returns.