America wasn't the land of opportunity she'd hoped for.
So when Maryama immigrated there as a young Somali wife and mother, she felt lonely, vulnerable and confused. While she would seek out news from back home, it only compounded her feelings of helplessness as she heard reports of family and friends being killed in the Somalia Civil War.
Loss hit Maryama's life early on. As a young child, she felt she could experience God in all of nature, but when she was 5 years old, her mother died.
Maryama was told she must appease Allah.
However, Maryama just wanted to escape this frightening god. She was terrified of death, feeling certain she could never enter paradise.
Soon the pressures of her life as a foreigner in a strange land became overwhelming. Sitting in a car and rocked with grief, she cried out, "Please help me!"
When she looked up through her tears, she saw a cross on a building. She had been in the U.S. for 10 years but never looked intently at a cross. She went into the church and said, "I want to know about the cross."
On a weekly basis, the pastor began showing her the "JESUS" film. She was mesmerized. She was drawn to the Man, Jesus, and the peace He offered to all who sought Him. In Christ, Maryama received the help she cried out for. After her baptism, she finally felt an incredible and lasting peace.
Recently Maryama told Jesus Film Project® staff members, "Twenty years ago, Jesus came to me through the 'JESUS' film. This film walked me through hearing and seeing Jesus."
Maryama now uses "JESUS" DVDs to help others receive Christ's love. You can read about her extraordinary journey to the heart of God in her book, "From the Crescent to the Cross."