Bold Believers in Syria includes stories, history and culture facts, activities, and recipes that help children understand the daily lives of people in a country where civil war has driven more than 750,000 Christians from the country. The 48-page book is available free from the Downloads section of this site.
Published on July 19th, 2019
By Elise Wixtrom, Kids of Courage Student Reviewer
Eric Liddell was raised in China by Scottish parents until the age of six, when he went off to boarding school in England with his younger brother. He attended the school, called Eltham College, until graduation.
Liddell was born to be a runner. His parents knew how fast he was from the time he could walk. After graduation, Liddell trained to race at a world-class level. His reputation grew until he made Great Britain’s Olympic team in 1924. He went to Paris with his colleagues to compete in the 100-meter run. Everyone was excited for him, and Scotland believed that he was a worthy representation of their country’s athletic ability. His event was highly anticipated.
There was just one problem. The 100-meter race was due to take place on a Sunday, and Eric Liddell was a Christian. Though many Christians nowadays play sports on Sunday, at that time devout believers did not work or play on the Sabbath. So Liddell disqualified himself from the event in order to make a point about his faith. Though he felt he was doing the right thing, many people did not. In fact, British newspapers began publishing articles that called him a traitor and a disgrace.
Instead of his running in his usual race, Eric ran in the 200-meter and 400-meter races, which were not on Sunday. They had never been his best events, but they allowed him to both compete and honor God with his time. He surprised the world with a gold medal and a new world record in the 400-meter event, and a bronze medal in the 200. Again he was a national hero.
However, Liddell did not continue racing. Instead, he turned to missionary work.
Liddell returned to China to finish the work that his parents had started so many years before. While he was in China, the Japanese army attacked the compound where he worked and taught. Liddell was captured by the Japanese and forced to go to an internment camp, where he eventually died.
Even though Liddell died before he could see the effect of his actions on the Chinese people, through his legacy, many generations of Chinese Christians have known God. Because Eric Liddell gave up his passion, he was able to advance the gospel in a land that was foreign to him. He felt and followed God’s calling even when it was inconvenient.
Find out more about Torchlighters DVDs here.
Students and Leader Guides for Torchlighters DVDs are available at Torchlighters.org and in the Downloads section of this site.
Published on July 18th, 2019
Torchlighter DVDs, produced by The Voice of the Martyrs and Christian History Institute, tell the stories of real-life Christian heroes from the past. Torchlighter student and leader guides provide lesson plans and supplementary activities that teach faith lessons and encourage positive character traits.
Find out more about the new George Müller story DVD at Torchlighters.org and on the Torchlighters Facebook page.
Note: Selected leader and student guides are also available in the Downloads section of this site.
Published on July 17th, 2019
Churches in parts of China are growing. Some families in rural areas don’t earn enough money to meet their daily needs. They are learning to rely on God to help and guide them through hard times.
Now government officials are putting up billboards to try to convince people to abandon their faith in God. One billboard says, “”If you go to church every day to learn about the Lord, God still cannot relieve your hardships. Follow the Party and don’t believe in God. The Party can give happiness to all. If your heart is not right, believing in the Lord is useless. Go get more positive energy so that our country will be powerful and families thrive.” (The “Party” means the Communist Party, which rules China.)
*If you could put up a billboard to teach people that the Chinese government’s message is false, what would it say? Draw a “billboard” with your message on it.
*Read about China in Bold Believers in China, available in the Downloads section.
*Learn about life in Communist countries here.
(Sources: China Aid and VOM Canada)
Published on July 16th, 2019
This summer, VOM Voice Becky J. taught a Kids of Courage class at her church for a month. The children learned that Christians in some countries don’t have Bibles of their own because it is illegal or because there is nowhere to buy a Bible.
Becky taught them about some of the ways Bibles get into non-Christian countries — such as in Scripture balloons, on audio Bibles or phones, and by motorcycles under challenging conditions. (See the photo above.) The kids watched video clips from kidsofcourage.com and played Crossing the Border to help them understand the risks of getting Bibles into countries where the government tries to restrict Christianity.
Becky encouraged her students to read the Bible every day since they are able to do so without fear. To help them remember to read their Bible and to pray for those who don’t have Bibles, the class made bookmarks with Hebrew 4:12 written on the front, and “Pray for Christians in countries where they can’t have a Bible” on the back.
*Read Hebrews 4:12, and tell what it means in your own words.
*Make a bookmark for your Bible that will encourage you to read your Bible every day and to pray for people who don’t have Bibles.
Published on July 15th, 2019
Recently, Todd Nettleton of VOM Radio interviewed Dr. Eric Foley from VOM Korea. Dr. Foley talked about launching Bibles inside balloons into North Korea, where Christianity is illegal. Read below some interesting facts about North Korea from the interview.
*To the North Korean government, it’s worse to be a Christian than to be a thief or a murderer.
*2018 was the most difficult year for balloon launches. In the fall of the year, VOM Radio listeners were asked to pray for the launches. By the end of the year, 30,000 new Bibles had been placed in North Korea by balloons. (See a video about balloon launches from a previous year here.)
*“North Korea, the most closed country in the world, is the only country in the world where Bibles fall from the sky,” said Dr. Foley.
*To the North Korean government, sending Bibles into their country is worse than sending missiles.
*When we started balloon launching, zero percent of people inside North Korea had ever seen a Bible with their own eyes,” said Dr. Foley. “Now more than eight percent of North Korean people have seen a Bible.”
*Some ways that Christians share the gospel with North Korea are secret. It’s better to “pray about it a lot and talk about it a little.”
*North Koreans are expected to worship their former leader, Kim Il Sung, who is now dead. “[North Korea] is the only neocracy in the world — the only country ruled by a dead man,” said Dr. Foley. (Kim Jong Un, the grandson of Kim Il Sung, is the current living leader of North Korea.)
Can you use the seven facts above to guide you in prayer for North Korea?
To learn about North Korean Christians, download Bold Believers in North Korea from the Downloads section.