The Maldives boasts of having a 100% Muslim population, and is the only country in the world which requires all citizens to be Muslim. For this reason, there are very few Christians, and it is one of the only countries that is too dangerous to share stories from. Even if elements of a story are changed, certain details can be traced back to an individual, since the country is so small.
Instead, we paint a picture of what a day in the life of a secret believer in the Maldives looks like:
After an early morning prayer, you get dressed for work. As you walk out the door, you're excited, because today you will meet a fellow Christian. You have met him online, and you're hoping to learn more about Christianity through him.
But you're also anxious, since you're meeting this person for the first time. You try to brush aside your concern, as it is so difficult to find another Christian in Maldives.
You arrive at your office with a smile on your face. As you greet everyone, a colleague gives you a strange look.
"What's with you today?" your co-worker asks. "You seem so happy."
You feel anxious and don't know how to respond. You want to share about your new found faith, but hold back. Sharing your faith will cost you your job…and everything else.
"It's a good day, my friend," you tell your colleague.
"You act differently these days," he says. "Something tells me you've changed. I'm your friend- you know you can talk to me about it."
"About what?" you ask nervously.
"About your new religion," he says.
You want to run away, but you are paralyzed by fear. You've been discovered!
"Please, excuse me," is all you can say, stumbling away from your coworker, before he can say anything else.
You can't concentrate the rest of the afternoon, and wonder how he found out about your conversion.
"Did he tell others in the office? Who else knows about my faith in Jesus? Does my family know?"
You want to cry but you can't, because others may see and ask questions.
After work, you head to the café, where your Christian friend is waiting. You scan the place, looking for a person wearing a blue shirt. As your eyes roam to and fro, you spot him- a familiar face… It's your colleague!
"Sorry, brother," he says. "I didn't mean to scare you at the office today."
*Names, photographs and other information have been changed for security purposes