Sunday, December 30, 2012

Prayer and Persecuted

  • I have just found out that Pastor Youcef, from Iran, was re-arrested on Christmas day to finish his 45 day sentence for evangelizing to Muslims. Please pray for him and the rest of his family that they will be comforted in knowing that God is in control. Here is a video by CBN News about his arrest.
  • If you would like to encourage others like Pastor Youcef, please go to be-a-voice.net or prisoneralert.com once you sign up you will be able to write letters to Christians, who are all across the globe.
  •   Here is also a section from the Extreme Devotion I read today:"Kill her! Long live Diocletian!" echoed in Zoe’s ears as she stood in the middle of the Coliseum before the angry crowd.
       Zoe thought about why she was there and smiled. She remembered the day she visited her husband at the jail where he worked, guarding the Christians imprisoned for refusing to sacrifice to the gods. Zoe grew up hearing that Christians were misguided and followed a deadly superstition. They set fire to Rome during Emperor Nero’s reign and got the punishment they deserved—they were nailed to crosses and thrown to lions.
    But that day in the prison, Zoe witnessed a Christian family praying together: "Dear Lord, help our death bring glory to your name. We forgive those who imprisoned us. Zoe left the jail puzzled. Why did these Christians have so much peace, knowing that they would soon face the lions?
    Zoe began to secretly meet with this family and ask them about their faith. Soon, she gave her heart to Jesus.
    Word quickly spread of Zoe’s newfound faith, and guards were sent to her home to give her a chance to recant and sacrifice to the god Mars. She refused. The guards put her in chains and hauled her to the very prison where her husband stood watch.
    When Zoe continued not to recant her faith, she was hanged, burned, and thrown into a river.


    Who is the extreme witness in this story? Is it the family who prayed before they were tossed to the lions? Or is it Zoe who would not recant her newfound faith before the guards? The answer is, yes. The family, on their way out of this world, brought another person into heaven. Both became extreme witnesses for Christ who left an indelible mark on the pages of history. Zoe would have otherwise been forgotten as a pagan wife of a pagan prison guard. History would have paid the family no mind as one of thousands killed. Yet an ordinary person with extraordinary faith is worth remembering. Will your life pen you into history as an extreme witness for Jesus Christ?
  • God bless you all, and I hope that you will use your life for God's glory!

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