Around the world, followers of Jesus are facing all kinds of pressures, violence and hate. We can feel helpless, especially when we don’t have much money to spare to send help and resources. But there are two things you can do now that will have a massive impact. You can pray (use the ‘Guts and Courage’ guide and ‘World Watch List Map’, which you can order here…), and you can encourage.
Sending your words, prayers, favourite verses, pictures and messages of support to persecuted Christians can, and does, raise courage. It helps them to keep going. It helps them know they are not alone. It helps them know they are not forgotten. Check out these three ways your messages of hope can encourage courage.
Abdu is a teenage Christian from the Middle East. He’s had a rough ride over the last few years. His mum and dad split up and he and his brother moved away with his mum to another country. But his mum left them, and hasn’t returned. Abdu and his brother went back to their dad’s home, but because Abdu had become a Christian his dad threatened him saying: ‘If you are not a Muslim, you are not my son. If you don’t choose Islam, you will die’. Harsh stuff.
Abdu was living on the streets, but is now being looked after by a Christian family. He’s doing OK, but needs our prayers and encouragement. Dozens of you have already sent him a message, picture, video or Bible verse and he’s really thankful: “Every time I receive new messages, I am more excited. The prayers by my family around the world encourage me to pray more and to stay strong in the Lord.” We’d love to send Abdu more messages.
Alvaro (a four-year-old boy), and girls, Trinity (4) and Anita (2) were playing outside their church in Indonesia, when the unthinkable happened: an Islamic militant threw a petrol bomb at them. They were all badly burned by the bomb – but none as badly as two-year-old Intan, who was playing with them. Tragically, a day later, Intan died. Alvaro and Trinity, who were more severely injured, are receiving long-term treatment to help reduce the scarring on their skin.
Anita, thankfully, has been healing well but still requires check-ups. But, understandably, they have all been badly traumatised by the attack. Anita has not yet forgotten the sound of the explosion. Whenever her father starts his motorbike, she runs away. Alvaro has been struggling to come to terms with his injuries: “I am ashamed, my body is full of scars.” Could you send the children handmade cards full of encouraging messages of hope and fun and love?
North Korea is the toughest place in the world to be a Christian. Simply being caught with a Bible or Christian books or CDs is likely to get you arrested, interrogated and imprisoned in a harsh labour or correction camp. There’s no way we could safely deliver letters or messages to secret Christians inside the country – it’d just be too dangerous. So, instead, we’re going old-school and embracing analogue tech! Email us a message, prayer or Bible verse that will encourage the hidden church in North Korea, and we’ll get it translated and then read out on covert radio programmes that are broadcast into North Korea! Cool, huh?
We support people who are beaten, tortured,
imprisoned, falsely accused, and hated simply for following Jesus.