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.
Published on March 6th, 2018
Islam, the religion of Muslims, is the main religion in Egypt today. But ancient Egyptian pharaohs were not Muslims or Christians.
Many centuries ago, Egyptian rulers had their bodies preserved as mummies. Their false religion taught them that preserving their bodies would help their soul survive properly.
You can make a “mummy” using oven-bake clay, washable acrylic paints (white or off-white, and other colors), paint brushes, and a very thin brush (such as a liquid eyeliner brush).
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for using the clay. Create the body, including the legs, arms, head, and head covering separately out of clay. The back of the mummy can be flat. Connect the arms, head, and head covering to the body. Smooth the clay together where the parts connect. Cross the arms over the chest. Bake and let cool. Paint the top of the mummy with white or off-white washable acrylic paint. Use two coats and let the paint dry between coats. You can use additional colors to decorate the mummy. A very thin brush will be helpful in painting any lines.
Visit this page to read more about the ancient Egyptians’ religion. Then talk about three ways the religion of ancient Egyptians’ was different from biblical Christian beliefs.
Published on March 5th, 2018
VOM Advance conferences share personal testimonies of God’s faithfulness in the midst of persecution. (Learn more here.) Musician Amy Shreve Wixtrom and her husband, Gary, lead worship and music at the conferences. Their daughter, Elise, is part of their worship team.
Read Elise’s story below.
My name is Elise Wixtrom, and I am 17 years old. When I was younger I started reading Kids of Courage, and I was always inspired by the stories that came from restricted and hostile countries. It is amazing how children and teenagers have such resilience in the face of danger. I was inspired then, and I continue to be inspired now.
I spend several months out of each year traveling and playing music. My family and I go all around the country, bringing our ministry and the message of The Voice of the Martyrs to people who want to know about the persecuted church. There are many kids all around the world facing persecution for their faith.
Our band plays songs about God’s love, and God’s presence with believers in Christ, especially through rough times. We usually travel in a motor home, but sometimes in a big car. We have a lot of equipment with us such as instruments, speakers, and stands. I like to look out of the window while I listen to music on long drives.
A couple months ago, we adopted a dog. We like playing with him when we stop for gas or when we go to a park.
Since I have had the privilege of working with VOM at conferences for over ten years, we have had lots of fun and have met many interesting people. I am now more aware of the difficulties and challenges that Christians face and have learned things about myself that I never would have had I not been able to work with this ministry. I am glad that I have had this opportunity to play a role in bring an awareness of Christian persecution to those in the free nations.
Published on March 2nd, 2018
Walid grew up in a Muslim family in Egypt. He and his 31 brothers and sisters were taught to hate Christians by their father, who had five wives. (Islam, the religion of Muslims, teaches that men can be married to several woman at the same time. Learn more here.)
As a young man, Walid worked on a house-painting crew. One of his co-workers, Haytham, sang Christian songs while listening to music through his earbuds. Walid hated Haytham and his singing. So one night after work, he stabbed Haytham with a knife.
In the Hospital
Haytham had to go to the hospital for surgery. Walid quit work and hid in his aunt’s house, hoping the police wouldn’t find him. When he finally left the house to look for a new job, a taxi hit him and crushed one of his legs and an arm. He, too, had to go to the hospital for treatment.
Haytham, who was no longer a patient at the hospital, came to visit Walid one morning in Walid’s hospital room. Haytham brought some of his Christian friends with him. When Walid saw the Christians, he screamed. He thought they had come to kill him. But Haytham gave Walid some gifts and then left the room.
Haytham continued to help Walid as he recovered. Walid returned to work on Haytham’s painting crew. He no longer hated Haytham, and he felt guilty for attacking him. But he still didn’t understand Haytham’s faith in Jesus.
A New Life and Christian Friends
While Walid tried to deal with his confusion about Christianity, he had a dream and a vision of Jesus that brought him peace and comfort. “I felt like I was a changed person,” he said. He gave his life to Christ and began going to church.
But his troubles were not over. Some of his brothers beat him up when they found out he had decided to follow Christ. They continued to abuse and threaten him.
Today Walid lives with a church member in Cairo, hiding from his family. He is grateful that he has Christian friends in his life who care for him, including Haytham, the man he used to hate.
(In the photo above, Walid’s face is covered to protect his identity from those who might want to harm him.)
(Source: March 2018 The Voice of the Martyrs magazine)
To Think About
*Why do you think Haytham brought gifts to Walid in the hospital?
*Walid had to go into hiding twice in the story. In each instance, why was he hiding?
*List three things you can pray about for Walid, and then pray for him.
Published on March 1st, 2018
Parents and Teachers: The January 2016 issue of The Voice of the Martyrs magazine features stories about courageous Christians in Egypt. You can share the adapted stories from this site about the featured Christians 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.
Additional resources about Egypt
*Restricted Nations: Egypt available at VOMBooks.com.
*Bold Believers in Egypt activity book, available in the free Downloads section.
*Egypt Lesson Plan
*The Kids of Courage VBS Curriculum.
Published on February 28th, 2018
Richard Wurmbrand was a pastor in Romania. He preached the truth from God’s Word, even when it was risky to do so. “Christians proclaim the truth,” he said.
“Imagine two schools,” Pastor Wurmbrand said. “One of the schools is run by a wise man, the other by an unwise man. In the first school, children are taught that 2 plus 2 is 4. In the second school, they are taught that 2 plus 2 is 3.
“Then another teacher comes along. This teacher says, ‘Love is the most important thing. Why should math teachers disagree? Let each teacher agree to give a little, so that we can all get along. The children can be taught that 2 plus 2 is 3 1/2. Whoever refuses to compromise is not a loving person, and should not be allowed to be a math teacher.’”
What do you think of the teacher’s solution?
What would you do if you were a teacher in the first school, and you were told you could no longer teach that 2 plus 2 is 4?
Two Plus Two
In the mid-1900s when Pastor Wurmbrand preached in Romania, communists ruled the country. They did not believe in God, and they tried to control what pastors taught in churches. Pastor Wurmbrand and other pastors were put in prison for continuing to preach truths from the Bible.
He told one of the communist officials, “Even if you put all the mathematicians in prison, 2 plus 2 will still equal 4.” What do you think Pastor Wurmbrand meant by that statement?
Pastor Wurmbrand said, “The Christian possesses truth much surer than mathematics, because it has been revealed by God Himself.”
(Sources include: Reaching Toward the Heights, by Richard Wurmbrand. Edited and paraphrased for length, clarity, and age-appropriateness.)