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Singing and Praying in Prison

Praying for Ethiopia

Last fall, after receiving training about how to share the gospel, some Christians in Ethiopia decided to pass out Christian books to people in their community. Four girls, Gifti (age 14), Mihiret (14), Eden (15), and Deborah (18) helped hand out the books.

Muslims in the community said the girls were “insulting” Islam, the religion of Muslims. Because of their complaints, the four girls were arrested and taken to a prison for criminals. On their first night in the prison, Eden was beaten. But she said to a Christian who visited her in prison, “This [suffering] is an honor for us. We should expect persecution. We are not afraid. We are singing and praying here in prison.”

Praise God, the girls were released from prison shortly before Christmas in good health!
(Source: World Watch Monitor)

To Talk About
*Why do you think Eden said that the girls’ suffering was “an honor?” (Read about some early Christians who also considered suffering for Jesus an honor in Acts 5:40-41.)
*Why did Eden say Christians should expect persecution? (Read John 15:20.)
*Who were also singing and praying in prison in Acts 16:25?

Read more about courageous Christians in Ethiopia in Bold Believers in Ethiopia, available in the free Downloads section.


Seven Facts About Missionary Jim Elliot

1.    In school, Jim was on the wrestling team.

2.    After Jim received poor grades at school one semester, he told his parents that he thought studying God’s Word was more important than his school subjects.

3.    In college, Jim encouraged his friends to share what they had learned from the Bible that day. He greeted them by saying, “What’s your verse for today?”

4.    Sixty-one years ago in 1956, Jim and four missionaries were killed in Ecuador by members of the Auca tribe (now known as the Waorani tribe). The five had gone to the area to tell the tribe about Jesus.

5.    Jim’s wife, Elizabeth, later went back to the tribe and shared a message of forgiveness and salvation. Many people in the tribe decided to follow Christ.

6.    Jim and Elizabeth’s daughter, Valerie, played with Waorani children while her mother ministered among the tribe.

7.    Ecuador issued a postage stamp honoring Jim.

Read another story about the missionaries to the Waorani tribe here .

Click here to find a clip from the Torchlighters DVD, “The Jim Elliot Story.”


Banging on a Drum in India

Men with drums in India

Jonathan is a VOM worker who travels to other countries to meet with persecuted Christians and to encourage them. On one of his trips to India, he met with a group of pastors, leaders, and missionaries. The Indian Christians worked in the state of Uttar Pradesh where most of the people are Hindus. (Find more about Hinduism here.)

Read below about Jonathan’s conversation with one of the Christians.

I asked him, “Brother, tell me about your work.”

He said, “My brother, the Lord has given me a wonderful ministry. I ride my bicycle to a village where there are no Christians, and I bang on my drum.”

He has a simple bike, but he had a drum on the middle of the crossbar. Behind him he had a little lantern sitting on some gospel tracts. He had a little speaker on the front of his bicycle.

Now imagine that. Imagine if we all went to the mall and banged on a drum in the parking lot.

A crowd comes around him and says, “Why is he banging on a drum?” When they gather around him, he preaches the gospel.

I asked him, “How does that go?”

He answered, “Sometimes it is amazing. The people hear the gospel; their heart is touched and changed. We see them repent. We see the start of a new church.”

I said to him, “That is incredible. What about other times?”

He said, “Oh, they beat me.”

I said, “Brother, I am so sorry. What do you do then? What do you do after they beat you?”

He said, “When I wake up, I ride to the next village.”

So I will ask you a simple question. When was the last time you shared the gospel with someone? It is real easy in the U.S. We need to be preaching the gospel.

(Source: VOMRadio.net. Edited for length and clarity.)

To Talk About
Jonathan said that Uttar Pradesh, where the bicycle evangelist worked, has about 200 million people. Ten years ago, Jonathan said, almost no Christians lived there. Now Uttar Pradesh is about 3 percent Christian. What is 3 percent of 200 million?
*****


Stand Firm in the Faith

Listen to this song based on 1 Corinthians 16:13. The lyrics are below.

Stand Firm in the Faith

Chorus
Stand firm in the faith,
Be strong, be brave,
And let all you do be done in love.
Stand firmly in the faith.

Chorus

Stand firm in the faith
Of the gospel of Jesus.
Crucified for our sins
Buried, now alive.

Be strong, strong in the Lord Jesus
Be brave, brave in the Lord Jesus.

Lion of Judah,
Spotless Lamb,
By His mighty hand
On this rock we stand.

Chorus 2 times

 


Happy to Get a Bible

Do you remember when you first received a Bible? Did you have to wait a long time to get it?
People in some countries where VOM travels may wait years for a Bible of their own.

The Voice of the Martyrs took Bibles to western Uganda, where they were delivered by a VOM contact. Watch the video clip to see someone else who happily received one of the Bibles.

Note: English is a main language in Uganda, but many of the people speak other languages. Can you find Uganda on a map?