Make a big noise for persecuted Christians by keeping quiet! 

Why I need to Blackout!

By Luke Stewart

I love communication. Whether I’m having a conversation with someone face-to-face, texting, or seeing what people are up to online, I love the feeling of being connected. As I type this up I’m staying at the house of some friends and as soon as my laptop was booted up I was on the hunt for the WiFi code so I could get back online and see what was happening in the world.

Social media and other forms of communication are brilliant and allow us to keep in touch with people who would have otherwise long disappeared off our radar. But more often than not I find myself constantly scrolling through pages and pages of my twitter feed in order to see what’s new and to keep myself amused. It takes up a lot of my time and I can sometimes take it for granted how easy it is to get in touch with the outside world.

So that’s why I love Blackout. It’s a unique opportunity to switch off the gadgets and calm our lifestyles down. Even when our diaries look fairly blank, more often than not our time gets mysteriously filled up and we can find it hard to make space for reflection and prayer, so it’s ideal having an event where time is dedicated specifically towards those things.

It allows us to hang out in the presence of God without feeling as if we need to do anything in a rush and gives us the opportunity to really press into the issues that we care about.

In particular we get a chance to connect with our wider family who live in places of persecution. For them, being a Christian means that they are shunned by society, and in the most desperate cases imprisoned or even killed.

It’s hard to think about, especially when life is so much safer here, but for thousands it’s the reality of everyday life.

This is why I joined with hundreds of others in choosing to Blackout. We fasted from phones and social media in order to devote time to pray for the persecuted church.

Instead, technology and the ability to socialise wherever and whenever has become something many of us depend on and we often get very itchy if it’s taken away from us.

Traditionally, fasting involves abstaining from eating food in order to dedicate the time that would have been spent eating towards prayer. In Biblical times this would have been a big deal for those who chose to fast, as meals were taken pretty seriously and food was not as easy to come by as popping down to the shops like we would in the 21st century.

There’s definitely still a place for fasting from food today, but our reliance on food is much smaller than it once was.

Instead, technology and the ability to socialise wherever and whenever has become something many of us depend on and we often get very itchy if it’s taken away from us. So, what better thing to sacrifice for 48 hours in order to place the needs of our persecuted family above our own?

If you’re anything like me, the thought of spending so much time in prayer can seem very daunting, but it doesn’t have to be one dimensional! There are loads of ways you can get creative in prayer, whether that’s drawing a picture, writing a letter or praying over a specific area on a map.

My youth group made a poky prison cell where we spent uncomfortable hour shifts interceding for those imprisoned for their faith! It’s up to you with how you choose to get involved and make sure you check the resources on the site too!

So why not get involved? Choose to Blackout: take a modern-day fast and be an advocate for persecuted Christians worldwide.

Sign up to do the Blackout

Sign up to do the Blackout this November and we’ll send you a free Blackout pack, with stickers!!:

The Author
Luke is a student in Southampton who helps us out every now and again. When he’s not enjoying YouTube videos of people falling over, he can usually be found playing and watching sport or cooking (and eating) something new and experimental.

We support people who are beaten, tortured,
imprisoned, falsely accused, and hated simply for following Jesus.