Bold Believers in North Korea includes stories, history and culture facts, activities, and recipes that help children understand the daily lives of people in a country where citizens are forbidden to practice Christianity. The 54-page book is available free from the Downloads section of this site.
Published on August 28th, 2018
Eleven-year-old Lilly lives in an orphanage in the former Soviet Union. (The Soviet Union, also called the U.S.S.R., was the world’s most powerful communist country. The Soviet Union broke up into smaller countries in the late 20th century.)
The orphanage is closed during the summer, and the orphans are sent to live at another facility. In the summer of 2017, a VOM contact held a Christian camp for Lilly and other 10 to15-year-old orphans. She gave them children’s Bibles, and the children read the entire Bible in four days! Then they began to study a Bible that was not written just for children.
They wanted to memorize John 3:16, but they were not familiar with how to find the exact verse in a Bible. The VOM contact said, “So they, in order not to be mistaken, learned the whole third chapter….I do not know many adults who study the Bible so thoroughly.”
Lilly and the other orphans even started their own little church that summer. But soon they had to return to the orphanage, far away from where the VOM contact lived. Christians near the orphanage tried to visit and teach the children, but the director of the orphanage hates Christians and would not let them in.
A New Teacher
So Lilly became their teacher! She led other orphans to Christ, and she started a Bible study.
But not all the orphans listened to Lilly. “They all know who the Christian children are,” said the VOM contact. “The believing children do not watch TV shows about witches, and they don’t fight or swear. The other children constantly laugh at them and bully them. It is difficult for them to follow Christ in those circumstances, but they remain faithful.”
The VOM contact visited the orphans several months later. She was thankful that Lilly had helped the children grow in their faith. “I am delighted by God who worked through a little girl!” she said.
(Source: VOM sources. Edited and paraphrased from the original for length, clarity, and age-appropriateness.)
To Talk About
*What can you pray for Lilly and the orphans?
*What can you pray for the director of the orphanage?
*All the orphans know which children are followers of Jesus. Would someone know that you are a Christian if you didn’t tell them?
Published on August 27th, 2018
Boko Haram is a group of violent Muslim fighters who attack Christians, churches, villages, and houses. They have kidnapped children and driven families from their homes.
But a surprising event happened in May. Seventeen Boko Haram fighters said they realized that Boko Haram is “serving the course of the devil.” They turned themselves in to the Nigerian military and asked for forgiveness for the pain they had caused others.
The fighters said they had been forced to join Boko Haram after their town was raided four years ago. Now they want out.
The former fighters are not yet Christians. Pray they will also surrender to Jesus and follow Him. Pray that more fighters will give up their violent ways. Pray for true peace for Nigerians.
To Talk About
*If you were a Nigerian Christian, would you want to forgive the fighters who left their violent lifestyles?
*Is there anyone that you think does not deserve forgiveness?
*Do you know any Bible verses about forgiveness?
Published on August 24th, 2018
Every morning, students at Christian schools in Uganda pray and read Scriptures. Christian leaders visit the schools to make sure the children understand the good news of Jesus. The Christians want to make sure the children are strong in their faith.
The majority of people in Uganda are Christians. But in parts of Uganda, Islam is growing. (Islam is the religion of Muslims.) Recently Brother Steven, a Christian from Uganda, talked about how the Muslims are spreading Islam in some areas.
1. “In our country, we have many orphans,” said Brother Steven. “Christians sometimes say, ‘Somebody else will take care of that child.’ But Muslims raise the money to support children in Africa so they will become Muslims.”
2. “Muslims give scholarships..,” said Brother Steven. “If you are to get a scholarship, definitely you must become a Muslim.”
3. Brother Steven also said, “They now have a strategy of building mosques everywhere — like every mile there is a mosque. [A mosque is a building where Muslims worship.] It could be a mosque for five people, or three people, but they are very optimistic about the future.”
4. “Fifty percent of the younger people have no jobs,” Brother Steven said. “[The Muslims say], ‘We have a job for you, but to do this job, we really need you to be a Muslim.’”
5. Brother Steven added, “It is a strategy to marry Christian girls. Young men who get a Christian girl, especially from a pastor’s family, get a [money] reward. They are a hero.” The Muslims believe the family the man starts with the Christian girl will be Muslim.
Look at each of the challenges for Christians mentioned above and pray about them. For example, you might pray, “Dear God, please help the people who care for orphans in Uganda find good Christian homes for the children.”
Brother Steven said, “We need to pray for the church to preach the gospel so people can hear the real gospel and receive it and also share it with others.”
(Source: VOMRadio.net. Edited for clarity, length, and age-appropriateness.)
Published on August 23rd, 2018
The following activity is from Bold Believers in Chiapas, available in the Downloads section.
“Boleros are like a cup and ball,” said an American who grew up in Chiapas. “But instead of trying to get a ball in a cup, you try to get a stick in the opening of a wooden ball.”
Use the following instructions to make your own toy like a bolero.
1. Punch a small hole in the center of the bottom of a 32-ounce yogurt container. You can use the end of an unfolded paper clip to start the hole. Gently enlarge it slightly with the tip of a pen or pencil.
2. Poke a 24-inch piece of string or shoestring through the hole and knot it on the inside to keep it from coming out of the hole.
3. Tie the other end of the string around a pencil about an inch from the tip of the eraser. Secure the string with tape.
4. Hold the pencil on the end opposite the eraser. Try to swing the container up and catch it on the pencil. It may take several tries!
Note: Before poking a hole in the container, you may want to cover and decorate it with paint, colored vinyl tape, foil gift wrap, fabric, or other colorful material.
Published on August 22nd, 2018
(Photo: Two children at a school in Africa. Their faces are covered to protect their identity from people who may want to harm them or their families.)
This is the time of year when most American kids return to school for the fall semester. But Christian kids in some countries don’t always have the freedom to get a good education in peace.
Christian children are sometimes mocked, bullied, and not promoted to the next grade.
Officials in China closed a Christian school last year, claiming that the children were “brainwashed.”
Muslim parents warn their children not to play with Christian children or make friends with them.
In parts of Uganda, Christian children are not welcome to attend school in Muslim areas.
In Chiapas, Mexico, authorities sometimes refuse to let children stay in school if their parents become Christians.
Christian children in Egypt have been forced to sit in the back of the class, and some students are given bad grades just because they are Christians.
Christians in Pakistan are often hired to do only low-paying jobs. They sometimes can’t afford to send their children to school.
To Talk About
*Will you thank God today for your school assignments and for the opportunity to get an education?
*Ask God to protect and provide for children in each of the countries mentioned above.