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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Remember Those Who Are Mistreated

There have been a lot of reports about what is currently happening to Christians in Iraq. People are now realizing that the news may not be completely accurate, & it's hard to know exactly what is happening. We do know that IS is forcing Christians to convert or they will be killed. We do know that Christians have fled to areas so remote that they are starving & dying of thirst.

It's hard to read those stories from my comfortable, air-conditioned home. It's hard to understand why those believers are tasting a persecution that I have never known. We should be drawn to our knees in urgent prayer for our brothers & sisters in Christ. Hebrews 13:3 says to "Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, & those who are mistreated, since you also are in the Body." So I pray. Not simply because I feel so helpless, over here on the other side of the world, but because we are fighting a spiritual battle & my prayers are effective against the powers of darkness.

Voice of the Martyrs is an organization that gives assistance to persecuted Christians around the world. They support pastors, underground churches, & families of martyrs by providing for their physical & spiritual needs. They are present in all hostile countries, & they are currently helping Iraqi Christians get shelter & food. Should you feel led to give financially, this is an organization whose cause I fully support. They are doing tangibly what I just can't.

You can also sign up for their free monthly newsletter. Let me tell you - reading stories about persecuted Christians every month will help keep your life in perspective. It sure does mine. The realities of what happens in this life are ugly. But Jesus has won the victory, & if you have surrendered your life to Him, you can know, as we fight this spiritual battle, how the story ends. Some Iraqi Christians will make it out alive - we hope. Some will not. But Jesus welcomes us all "safely home"* whether it is now or later.

And we pray.

*Safely Home is one of my favorite books, written by Randy Alcorn, about Chinese Christian persecution. I highly recommend it.


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