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445 Days in Prison

Petr (left) with another prisoner

One night, Petr Jasek had a troubling dream. In the dream, he was locked in a prison. He saw the prison door shut, and he heard the lock click into place.

Petr was still thinking about the dream the next morning at church. A friend even noticed that he looked upset and asked him what was wrong.

The Dream Comes True
Shortly before Christmas about two years later, Petr was at an airport preparing to leave Sudan. As part of his job with The Voice of the Martyrs, he had been meeting with Sudanese Christians to discover how VOM could help them.

Suddenly an airport security officer tapped him on the shoulder. Authorities took away his camera and laptop, and questioned him for almost 24 hours. They knew about his Christian work in Sudan. But they falsely accused him of spying and other crimes, then they put him in prison at 1:30 in the morning.

At the Sudanese prison, Petr was amazed to see the same prison door and to hear the same lock clicking that he had seen and heard in his dream! The memory assured him that God had known what would happen to Petr in advance, and that He was in control.

Unfriendly Cellmates
Petr’s cellmates were sleeping on the floor when he arrived. They squeezed closer together to give Petr a small space to sleep. The next morning, they asked him for news from the outside world. He told them about an attack on innocent people in Paris by radical ISIS Muslims. When they heard the news, the prisoners jumped up and shouted for joy. Petr realized that his new roommates were also radical Muslims.

Day by day, the Muslims grew harsher toward Petr. They called him “filthy pig” or “filthy rat,” and they hit him when he didn’t answer to the insulting names. Petr prayed to be released.

A New Purpose
One night, 14 new prisoners from Eritrea were stuffed into Petr’s cell. Petr shared his testimony with them and told them the good news of Jesus. Two of them decided to follow Christ!

“From that day forward, I dedicated my prison time to the Lord,” Petr said. “I prayed, ‘If You will allow me opportunities to share the gospel, I will stay here as long as You want!’ I even stopped praying that I would be released from prison.”

Note: Petr was released after 14 months in prison, and he returned home to his family in the Czech Republic.

To Talk About
*If you were in prison for your Christian activities, what would you want Christians on the outside to pray for you?
*Why did Petr stop praying to be released from prison?
*Think of a task or chore that you don’t like to do. How could God use you in that situation to help you know Him better or to be a blessing to others?
*Petr met 14 new people in prison. They stayed in his cell for less than a day. Ask two or three people to act as newcomers and to role play the situation with you. What would you tell people about Jesus if you had only a short time with them?


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