Saeed to Son: 'My Chains Are Keeping Me From You'
Even though imprisoned Pastor Saeed Abedini cannot be there for his son Jacob's 7th birthday this week, he sent a touching letter to his son reminding him of the one Father that will be with him wherever he goes.
Saeed had received his son's birthday invitation at the Iranian prison where he remains imprisoned for his Christian faith. He sent his heartbreaking letter to his son through a family member who was allowed to visit him this week.
"I saw your beautiful birthday invitation that you had made me and I know how much you want me to be there on your birthday. Daddy loves you so much," he wrote. "I long to be there for your birthday and to make this reunion happen, but my chains are keeping me from you."
"I might not be there on your birthday and that breaks my heart as your father," he continues. "But I know the One who is there on your birthday who is there for you and cares for you more than anyone could imagine. HE IS THERE with you and His name is I AM WHO I AM."
During a meeting with his wife Naghmeh earlier this year, President Barack Obama told Jacob bringing his father home was a top priority and that he would try and have him home for his birthday.
On Wednesday, ACLJ Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow testified before the U.S. Senate on Pastor Saeed's case and the need to protect religious freedom abroad. The Obama administration's Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom David Saperstein reiterated their commitment to bringing him home.
To date, Pastor Saeed remains imprisoned and suffers injuries from brutal prison beatings. Despite his ordeal, he has hope and an unwavering faith in God.
That faith and reliance on God was evident in his letter to his son. Read his entire letter below:
Letter to Jacob on his 7th Birthday
To my dear beloved son Jacob,
I saw your beautiful birthday invitation that you had made me and I know how much you want me to be there on your birthday. Daddy loves you so much. I long to be there for your birthday and to make this reunion happen, but my chains are keeping me from you.
I want you to know that although I might NOT BE THERE and you might feel my absence, there is One who always IS. One who is always there with you and who can meet all of your needs under any condition. I might not be there on your birthday and that breaks my heart as your father. But I know the One who is there on your birthday who is there for you and cares for you more than anyone could imagine. HE IS THERE with you and His name is I AM WHO I AM.
I AM WHO I AM. It means that God is there with you in every situation that you are going through. This is the name that God introduced Himself when meeting with Moses in the burning bush when God's people were crying out to Him and were feeling His absence. Today there are many people around the world who are experiencing the same things that the people of God were experiencing and that you are experiencing. They are crying out to God and might not be feeling His Presence. They are wondering where is God in all of this. But I want you to remember that despite what you feel, He is always there with you.
Even though I AM NOT there with you, I AM is there with you. God came in human flesh in Jesus Christ all the way from heaven to the earth to give us the gift of salvation by being crucified on the cross for the punishment of our sin. So on this special day, I want you to accept this gift of salvation. Invite Jesus into your heart as you have invited me to your birthday.
So happy birthday to my big boy and my hero, Jacob Cyrus Abedini. Thank you for standing strong with me in this battle for the Glory of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Your proud Dad,
**To help support efforts to bring Pastor Saeed home and stop worldwide Christian persecution, add your name to the ACLJ's petition for his freedom at BeHeardProject.com***