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Kids of Courage: 2006 Top Ten Bold Believers Stories

Nigeria

Note: To protect their identities, the names of some of the people on this Web site and some identifying details have been changed. Some of the quotes are edited and paraphrased from the original sources for clarity.

The following stories are about kids and families who bravely continued to serve the Lord in the face of struggles or danger. As you read the stories, please pray for these Christians and also for thousands of others around the world who face similar struggles.

#10- Colombia: Hiding from Kidnappers

In the country of Colombia, terrorist groups attack pastors and force churches to close. They do not believe in God and do not like Christians. They often capture teenagers and force them to be soldiers. They would probably like to kidnap Jacquelynne.

Jacquelynne is a 15-year-old Christian girl. She meets secretly in a house with 15 other Christians for devotions. All the other Christians in her area have fled to safer places.

Jacquelynne sleeps at different friends’ houses to avoid being captured by the terrorists. She gets up at 4:30 every morning and walks to her family’s home. Then she fixes breakfast for her six younger brothers and sisters before going to school.

“If you see a difficult situation, you must keep going forward and not give up on God for any reason,” Jacquelynne says in a message to Christian kids in the U.S. “For strength, you must read everything in the Bible. It is all God’s truth.”

#9- India: Only Jesus

India is a country where Hindus are already in the majority. But militant Hindus would like their country to be even more Hindu. They attack pastors and Christian ministries that help poor and needy people.

In March 2006, a group of radical Hindus attacked a training center where Christians were learning more about the Bible. The Hindus destroyed furniture and office equipment.

When the attackers discovered the 8-year-old daughter of the center’s director, they ordered her to recite a prayer to a Hindu god. According to a Pakistan newspaper, the girl refused, saying she would worship only Jesus. The Hindus threw her to the floor. God protected her from further harm.

#8- Eritrea: Kids Singing in Jail

A group of kids in the African country of Eritrea were attending a Saturday morning Bible study when the police showed up. They arrested all the children, who ranged in age from 2 to 18.

The Eritrean government is suspicious of anyone who takes their faith seriously. Leaders seem to want the citizens to put the government first in their lives instead of God.

At the police station, the children began to sing a song with these words: “I am not afraid of persecution, hardships, and even death. Nobody can separate me from the love of Jesus Christ. He died on the cross and gave me new life.”

According to some sources, the police told the children to “shut up.” The youngest children were released that day, but the oldest were kept for a longer time. (Sources include: Compass Direct and VOM contacts)

#7- Laos: Homeless Christians

Some Christian mothers, fathers, and children in Laos received a rude surprise one day in Spring 2006. Fifteen Khmu families found notices on their front doors that said their homes were going to be taken away from them and given to other villagers!

“The land of ‘Mr. X,’ who is a Christian, is now confiscated and has been given to ‘Mr. Y’ and ‘Mr. Z,’” said one notice. “Even though ‘Mr. X’ has farmed this land and prepared it for planting this year, he cannot work this land anymore.”

Local communist officials in Laos persecute Christians from the Khmu tribe. The Khmu Christian families were not welcome in their village. Taking away their possessions was just one more way of letting them know that.

Yet more and more Khmu families are following Jesus! “There are so many people wanting to accept Christ and not enough workers to teach them!” said a Khmu evangelist in Laos.

#6- Indonesia: Caleb House Children

Gaby is a girl who lives at Caleb House, a “safe house” for Christian children in Indonesia. Gaby and the other Caleb House kids have not had easy lives. Caleb House was opened to protect children who have had family members attacked by radical Muslims. They are safe in the house.

But they were not safe walking an hour to and from school each day. They were targets for people who do not like Christians. So The Voice of the Martyrs bought Caleb House a school bus.

The Caleb House kids could easily count their fears and sorrows. But instead, they are counting their blessings. (See 1 Thessalonians 5:18.) After Caleb House received their new bus, Gaby wrote a thank-you note to VOM that said, “I’m glad the Lord has planned all these beautiful things!”

#5- Azerbaijan: Telling Everyone about Jesus

Aaron is a Christian teenager in Azerbaijan, where most people are Muslims. Many of the Muslims in Azerbaijan don’t take their faith seriously. But most believe Azerbaijani people should stay Muslims whether they are serious or not.

“I don’t keep my faith a secret,” Aaron said, “but it is difficult to speak openly at school because they don’t believe. I talked to some students about Jesus and His love. They told me Jesus is not God, and they refused to listen. So I try to show them God’s love by being patient and kind. Sometimes they treat me bad or tease me because of what I believe. They think all Christians are going to hell.

“I plan to tell everyone at school about Jesus. They may hate me and say terrible things, but I know God wants them to hear. God wants me to do this.”

#4- Bangladesh: No Wedding for Prue

Prue lives in Bangladesh where most people are Muslims. But Bangladesh also has many Buddhists. Prue’s relatives are Buddhist. Buddhists do not believe that Jesus is the way to salvation.

Prue’s aunt wanted her to marry a Buddhist man. Prue was a young teenager, but in Bangladesh many girls get married very young. Prue did not want to marry a Buddhist. She had heard the gospel from an evangelist, and she had decided to follow Christ. She knew it was not God’s will for her to marry a Buddhist.

Prue’s aunt began threatening her. She said she would throw acid in Prue’s face if she didn’t marry the Buddhist. Then Prue would have a hard time finding anyone to marry her if she had medical problems from an injured face.

Prue left home and went to live at a camp for persecuted Christians. Her life is not easy, but she has continued going to school and following Christ.

#3- Nigeria: “God Has Blessed Me”

“God has blessed me,” said 12-year-old Davou from Nigeria. “My favorite Bible passage is Psalm 105. It tells me how to give thanks to the Lord.

“When I grow up, I will become a pastor,” Davou continued. “My favorite school subject is Christian Religion and Knowledge.”

Davou’s words are cheerful, and he has a sweet smile. (See his photo at the top of the page.) Someone meeting him might suspect that he has had an easy life. But they would be wrong.

Davou lived in an area where Muslim rioters destroyed Christians’ homes, buildings, and churches. One day a riot started, but Davou’s family did not know about it. “My parents were going to work at the farm,” said Davou. “They didn’t know what was going on in the village close to our farm. When they saw people gathered, they thought it was for a good reason. They didn’t know it was rioters who were killing people that came their way. That was how they met their death.”

Davou lives at a home for children whose families were attacked by rioters. “God helps me in the time of trouble,” he said.

#2- China: Jesus Forever

Chinese police raided a Sunday school class of more than 30 children and took them to the police station in a large van. At the station, the children were taken into a room for questioning. A policeman began to threaten them. He told them they could not leave until they wrote, “I do not believe in Jesus” 100 times. Boldly, the children wrote: “I believe in Jesus today. I will believe in Jesus tomorrow. I will believe in Jesus forever.”

The policemen did not know what to do. When the children’s parents came to the station, the police said they could not take their children home unless the parents said they didn’t believe in Jesus anymore. One widow said, “You will just have to keep them, because without Jesus, there would be no way for me to take care of them.” The annoyed policeman then allowed her to take her children.

#1- Pakistan: Living in a Stable

Pamila, Basharat, and Nabila are Pakistani Christian children. Pamila is 10 years old, Basharat is 7, and Nabila is 4.

Their father, Aslam, came from a Christian family. But he did not take his family’s faith seriously. Pakistan is a Muslim country, and Christians face many temptations to leave Christianity and become Muslims. Aslam did not have a personal relationship with Christ, so he was not able to resist the temptation.

After Aslam became a Muslim, Yasmeen, his Christian wife, refused to deny her faith in Christ. So Aslam kicked her and the children out of the house.

A Muslim man hired Yasmeen to be his maid. He let her live in the stable with her children. Their roommates were five cows, eight goats, and a donkey. The stable had no bathroom, and the children took baths in a canal outside the village.

The family ate only one or two meals a day. They were not allowed to go to church. The children wore their only set of clothes until they wore out and fell off. But Yasmeen said, “I didn’t lose hope, because I have Jesus.”

After the family had lived in the barn for three years, Christian friends helped them move to a village where other Christians live. Pamila, Basharat, and Nabila have new clothes and are able to go to school. “Keep your faith in God,” is Yasmeen’s advice to Christians who may be discouraged.




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