The simple act of living out their Christian faith is dangerous for so many Christians around the world. Because of extremism, many are part of underground churches that worship in secret. Other have no community support at all and worship on their own.
Let's consider some facts on persecution. According to Open Doors, every month around the world the following occurs:
According to the Pew Research Center, among the world's 25 most populous countries, these five countries have the highest religious restrictions: Egypt, Indonesia, Pakistan, Russia, and Turkey.
This Sunday, November 6, 2016, is the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church. Please take some time to pray for those who are suffering for their faith. I have listed resources here that will help you to pray in an informed way. These resources also highlight other ways you can help if you desire. For example, through VOM I have purchased Action Packs and filled them with blankets, clothing, etc. for displaced Christians. You'll find numerous opportunities to make a difference. But remember, we need to start with prayer, as that is the most powerful way to affect change.
There are other organizations as well. These will get your started as you seek to become informed and to help. Thank you for supporting our brothers and sisters in Christ, and feel free to post your prayers in the comment section.
On today’s podcast I (Jane VanOsdol ) welcome Todd Daniels, the regional manager for the Middle East for International Christian Concern. With the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church (IDOP) coming up on November 3, 2013, we wanted to draw attention to this issue. Be sure to see the link below for your IDOP kit. The kit includes several resources to use for yourself, with a small group, or your church. You will even find a lesson for children in it.
In this podcast’s session, we discuss several issues concerning the persecuted church, including the following topics:
IDOP kit: http://info.persecution.org/IDOP2013
Save Our Sisters: http://www.persecution.org/assistance/save-our-sisters/
Suffering Wives and Children: http://www.persecution.org/assistance/suffering-wives-and-children/
The following organization is working with resettled Christians. It is a need, but a really challenging task:
Thank you for joining us for Reflections, short meditations on scripture intersecting life.
In today's Reflections we are meditating on Isaiah 61:2-3
To comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of His splendor.
The loss of a loved one is the most devastating loss we can endure. It shakes us as nothing else can. We are left bereft, dealing with a toxic swirl of emotions.
Like many of you, I know grief. I lost my second daughter when she was just 11 days old. God inserted Himself into the midst of my suffering, and walked through that time with my family and me. It was not easy, but as I held on to Him, He held me.
For those of you who know grief as your constant companion right now, I want to give you hope. You will get through this. I hope today's podcast encourages you in this journey.
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