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Richard Wurmbrand Born 108 Years Ago

Pastor Richard Wurmbrand was born on March 24, 1909. He served 14 years in prison for sharing the gospel in communist Romania. After he was freed, he and his wife, Sabina, started The Voice of the Martyrs to help persecuted Christians.  Pastor Wurmbrand died in 2001.

Pastor Wurmbrand told many stories to illustrate Bible truths. One of the stories he told is below.

“A child was urged to eat carrots and peas because they contained vitamins. He said, ‘Why didn’t God put the vitamins in candy and ice cream?’ My answer would have been, ‘Because it’s important for children not only to have vitamins, but also to learn to swallow what may be unpleasant to the taste.’ We all need to learn from the good and the unpleasant. A Christian must welcome unpleasant things sometimes, because they are part of the ‘all things’ that God is working together for our good.”

To Think About: Read Romans 8:28. What kinds of “unpleasant things” do persecuted Christians face?


Mary and Jabril

Mary, an American Christian girl, met Jabril at the college she attended in the United States. Jabril came from an Arab country. He spoke English well, and he followed the same customs and wore the same kind of clothes as the American college students.

Mary once saw a photo of Jabril that was taken in his home country. In the photo he wore a long white robe. Mary thought he looked very handsome, and he also seemed polite and kind.

Mary and Jabril began seeing more of each other, and Jabril asked Mary to marry him. He told her that she could continue to practice her Christian faith after they married, even though he was a Muslim. Mary said yes to his proposal.

A Sad Surprise
Mary moved with Jabril to his Arab homeland after their wedding. As soon as they arrived, Jabril changed. He began wearing traditional clothing, and he made Mary wear a long robe. Mary had no freedom. She had to hide her Bible under her pillow and read it when no one was around.

After Mary and Jabril had children, Jabril told their oldest daughter to spy on Mary. She even had to tell her father when Mary talked on the phone and who she talked to. Mary felt trapped in a sad situation.

Saudi Arabian Rules and Honor
In Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries, a person is not as important as his family or group. It is most important not to bring dishonor on one’s family. A person brings dishonor on his or her family by breaking the rules of Saudi society.

Jabril did not follow strict Muslim rules outside of his country, so Mary thought it was “safe” to marry him. Saudi and other Arab students who attend school in another country often aren’t as careful about following the rules because there is less chance of bringing dishonor on their families. When they return home, they go back to following the rules.

Thousands of Saudi students come to the United States for college. Many do things they would never do in Saudi Arabia because it would break the rules in their country.

The true story above comes from the revised Bold Believers in Saudi Arabia country book, available in the free Downloads section.


God is My Hero

 

The story below is from Stef the children’s website of SDOK, The Voice of the Martyrs’ sister mission in the Netherlands.

In a beautiful country far away, there lives an 8-year-old boy we are calling Adan. We’ll call his younger brothers Sang and Puran. We have made up names for them to keep them safe. Read how Adan tells his story below.

Talking About God
My mom and dad love God. My dad tells people about Him. Other people like what he tells them, and they decide to follow Jesus. Then they want to learn more about Jesus. So my father goes to them and teaches them things from the Bible.

There are very few Christians in our country, so perhaps people think we are a bit strange — or dangerous. I know that people don’t want us to talk about God to people on the street or at school.

Disappeared
One evening my father packed his bag and got ready to take a trip. I heard him tell my mother that he was concerned. “Something doesn’t feel right,” he said. “But whatever happens, God is there. I’m not afraid because He is with me.”

Every day after school, I asked my mother, “Is Dad home yet?” When he didn’t come back after a few weeks, I understood what had really happened. The police had arrested him and put him in prison!

The kids at school knew he was in prison. They teased me terribly, and it was super bad. I sent my father a letter begging him to come home.

Sadness
Finally we were able to visit my dad in prison. He did not look well. I went back home sad.

“Dad finds it difficult to be in prison,” my mother said to me. “But he tells God about his sadness. And he tells the guards that he is a Christian, and that he loves his country, but that most of all he loves his King, Jesus. That’s why he tells people about Jesus. God has promised him in a dream that he will take care of you, Sang, and Puran.

“When children bully you at school, know that the Lord Jesus is near,” my mother continued. “It’s not easy, but Jesus has overcome all evil.”

Miracle
My father stayed in prison for four years. One night, he had a wonderful dream. He saw a great light, and an angel opened the door to his cell.

On the day of his dream, he was allowed to go home! We are blessed that he is back with us.
I think my father is my hero, but he says he was often sad and scared in jail. “God is the hero of my story!” says my father.

If he is saying this, it must be true. Do you agree?


Ten Facts About VOM’s Kids of Courage VBS Curriculum

 

1.    The VBS curriculum teaches kids about Christians in China, Egypt, Nigeria, North Korea, and India.

2.    Kids learn that Kids of Courage trust God, get prepared, remember the persecuted, forgive others, and witness boldly.

3.    The complete $30 curriculum kit includes nine books, about 400 pages of materials, a photo CD, and a music CD.

4.    The curriculum includes opportunities to share and explain the gospel to children who have not yet trusted Christ as their Savior.

5.    The lesson plans are adaptable for small and large churches.

6.    The format allows each teacher to present one country at all sessions, reducing preparation time.

7.    Students discover that persecuted Christians may experience joy and victory in times of struggle.

8.    The curriculum is age-appropriate for kids 5 through 13 and older, and presents Christian persecution in a sensitive manner without talking down to kids or overwhelming them.

9.    VBS directors have reported positive feedback from teachers, parents, and students. (See “Feedback” at www.kidsofcouragevbs.com.)

10.    Children and youth workers have also used the curriculum in Sunday school classes, homeschool co-ops, missions conferences, and other settings.

For more information and to preview samples, visit www.kidsofcouragevbs.com.


Patrick: Slave and Evangelist

Young Patrick thought he was dreaming when he heard his father’s footsteps in the hallway outside his bedroom door.

“Wake up! Wake up! Pirates are invading our villa!” But before Patrick could leap to his feet, a pirate grabbed him by the arm. “You’re coming with me!” he gruffly scowled and hauled his prisoner away to the wicker boats on the sand of the shore below.

Patrick was a teenager when kidnappers seized him from his home. The kidnappers sold him as a slave to a master in Ireland. Patrick feared that he might never see his family again.

Patrick cried out to God for help, and he grew closer to the Lord while he was a captive. Later Patrick was able to escape and return home to his family. But he didn’t forget that people who had captured him did not follow Jesus.

Against his family’s wishes, Patrick went back to Ireland to share the gospel. He faced many challenges and obstacles, but he continued to serve God. Patrick died on a March 17th many centuries ago. We remember him every year on St. Patrick’s Day.

The story above comes from the book The Story of St. Patrick: More Than Shamrocks and Leprechauns. To learn more about this and other children’s resources, visit the resource page on this site.

The book ends with the following prayer:
Dear Jesus, I have friends who do not know You. I ask for boldness and graciousness to tell them about the promise of heaven You have offered to each of us who chooses to receive it. If they make fun of me for following a God they cannot see or for believing in a promise they do not understand, help me to stay close to You, and not be ashamed of You. Amen.


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