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Bold Believers in Syria

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.

Spotlight Story

Petr’s Denial

Petr

Not Yet Bold
Petr Jasek grew up as the son of a pastor in Communist Czechoslovakia. (Czechoslovakia is no longer a country today. In 1993, it split into two countries: the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Communist governments may forbid or strongly discourage belief in God. Learn more here.)

Petr’s father gave him a book about persecuted Christians, and Petr thought it was a very important book. But the book didn’t make Petr bold in his faith. He was even afraid to tell his classmates that his father was a pastor. Instead, Petr told them his father was a beekeeper.

Then when he read the story of the disciple Peter denying Christ, and he felt guilty. (See John 18:15-27.)

Petr became a committed Christian when he was 15. He often asked God to give him a second chance to stand up for Jesus in public. Later, God gave him that chance.

A Bold Witness
Young people were required to join the army, where officers assumed all the soldiers were atheists. After Petr joined, an officer asked a group of 300 soldiers, “Is there anyone who still believes in God?”

God strengthened Petr to raise his hand, even though no one else did. Since then, Petr has witnessed for Christ all over the world. In 2015, Petr was arrested in Sudan because of his work in that country for The Voice of the Martyrs. Even in prison, he continued to boldly proclaim the truth about Jesus. He was released after 445 days. You can read his story here and here.

Please pray for Christians who are persecuted and imprisoned in Sudan.

(Source: The September 2018 The Voice of the Martyrs magazine)

To Think About
*Why was Petr afraid to say his father was a pastor?
*Is there anywhere where you would be uncomfortable telling people that you are a follower of Jesus?


Spotlight Story

This Month

Parents and Teachers
The September 2018 issue of The Voice of the Martyrs magazine features stories about families of Christian martyrs. The issue includes stories from India, Nigeria, Uganda, Sudan, and other countries where Christians are persecuted.

Some of the stories may be too intense for children. You may want to share adapted stories from this site about Christians in the featured countries with your children, then pray together for the people in the stories.

Note: To subscribe to the free monthly The Voice of the Martyrs magazine, visit the subscription signup page


Activities Story

A Malaysian Treat and a Craft

Easy batik

The previous post told about Malaysia’s Independence Day. To make a Malaysian treat, try the recipe below.

Banana Fritters
Banana fritters are a popular treat in Malaysia. To make them, combine 1½ cups of flour, 2 tablespoons of sugar, and ½ teaspoon of cinnamon. In a separate container, mix 2 eggs, 1 cup of milk, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Then mix the liquid ingredients with the dry ingredients. If the batter is too thick, add water a little at a time until it is the thickness of pancake batter.

Heat enough oil for deep frying until hot. Slice 4 to 6 bananas lengthwise, and dip them into the batter to cover them completely. Deep fry the bananas until golden brown. Serve warm.

Easy Batik
Batik is an art practiced in Malaysia. Find easy instructions to make a batik prayer reminder here.

Learn more about Malaysia in Bold Believers in Malaysia, available in the free Downloads section.


Spotlight Story

Malaysia: Independence Day

Muslims in Malaysia

On August 31st, Malaysians celebrate the day in 1957 when their country became independent from Britain. Independence means freedom. But not all Malaysians have freedom of religion. Read the paragraph below about life for Christians in Malaysia, then name three things Christians aren’t free to do in Malaysia.

Islam, the religion of Muslims, is the official religion. All people who are part of the Malay ethnic group are considered Muslim. It is a crime for them to become Christians. The government makes rules about what Christian books and materials can say. It is illegal for Christians to try to lead Muslims to Christ, or to say anything that insults Islam.

(Source: The Voice of the Martyrs’ Global Prayer Guide)

Christians who minister to Malaysians are asking for prayer for the following.
*The nation of Malaysia.
*The people of Malaysia to be saved.
*Freedom for Christian prisoners.

Learn more about Malaysia in Bold Believers in Malaysia, available in the free Downloads section.


Spotlight Story

Becoming a Missionary: Next Steps

Recently Todd Nettleton of VOM Radio interviewed Scott Brawner, a Christian who has prepared students to be mature followers of Christ. Read below some of Scott’s thoughts about American Christian youth today, and his advice for those called to become missionaries.

“It was breaking my heart,” Scott said, “to see how many kids come forward at an event, come to camp or retreat, raise their hands and accept Jesus — then the next Sunday, even the FBI couldn’t find those kids. They need to consider what it means to be obedient as a follower of Christ as an adult.”

Todd asked Scott to offer some advice about the next steps a young person should take if God has called them to mission work overseas.

“I would start by saying, ‘You will never go anywhere if you don’t have a passport,’” said Scott. “I want you to go online or to the post office, get an application for a passport, fill it out, sent it in, and start the process.

“Once you receive that passport, I challenge every young person to take that passport, and go to the altar and pray over that passport. Say, ‘Lord Jesus, here am I. Send me.’ Say, ‘Lord Jesus, this is not my piece of paper, this is yours.’

“Then find an accountability net. Talk to a missions pastor, or a youth pastor, or a senior pastor. Let them know of your desire to go. Ask them what is available through your church or denomination, or other relationship that your church already has.

“From there, I would recommend as you prepare to go, find a ministry that is either doing mentoring or equipping students to go to the field.

If you want to hear Scott and Todd’s entire interview, enter “Brawner” in the search box at VOMRadio.net.

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

For more advice about preparing to serve God, read the “Ask a VOM Worker” posts in the archives of this site.