Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Sharing in their Suffering, Helping in their Work, part 2

Remember the prisoners, as though in prison with them, and those who are ill-treated, since you yourselves also are in the body. (Hebrews 13:3 NASB)

In my blog post of 6/28/14, I wrote of my increasing concern for the persecuted church and our God-given imperative to both remember them in prayer and support them as best we can. I had just seen the new Voice of the Martyrs newsletter, in which the opportunity to adopt a frontline worker was offered.  Voice of the Martyrs was asking for volunteers to agree to adopt a worker for a period of one year and give them what they most need and desire - prayer coverage. Money was nice but not essential. They had wisely discerned that money will be of limited help if prayer is not given first. 

Just as I urged you to do, I signed up online to adopt a worker. This week my letter finally came. I have a photo of my worker and his wife. They are a beautiful African couple, and they are my brother and sister in Christ.  He puts his life on the line every single day as he shares the gospel of Christ in his country.  It's hard to comprehend. My brother tells people about Jesus every day, and every day he faces the possibility of persecution and death when he does it.

It is my job to pray for this sweet man and his wife every day for a year. After only a few days, I have an amazing amount of love for them, although I will likely never meet them this side of heaven. I cannot imagine what it will be like a year from now. To be sure I remember to pray, I set an alarm for 8 AM. When I'm starting my work day, I'll be praying for his.  Frankly, it's a big responsibility, and it terrifies me. My sweet brother faces death, death on a daily basis, and it's my job to pray for his safety. How frightening is that?  I sure don't want to let him down. 

My front-line worker is not the only one who needs prayer. Many, many more front-line workers face persecution and possible death every day. They are taking the truth of Christ into difficult situations and to people who will also face dire consequences if they choose to follow Christ. The work is hard, and it would be easy to become discouraged. We are commanded in Scripture to both support and pray for these dear servants of our Lord.  We must not fail in this task! 

for "WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED." How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher? How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, "HOW BEAUTIFUL ARE THE FEET OF THOSE WHO BRING GOOD NEWS OF GOOD THINGS!" (Romans 10:13-15 NASB)

It is our responsibility to pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ who are doing what our Lord commanded. In fact, since Scripture instructs us to remember them and support them, we are disobedient when we do not. These men and women desperately need us to hit our knees, hold up their arms, and ever present their names before our God. We must stand in the gap for them. Dear ones, we cannot let them down!

A man and his wife are counting on me to stand in the gap for them. When my turn comes, I hope there will be someone to stand in the gap for me.
The link to the blog mentioned above is here: http://leannahollis.blogspot.com/2014/06/sharing-in-their-suffering-helping-in.html?m=1
To join the effort, go to www.vombooks.com/July 2014 and sign up for a front-line worker of your own. You will be glad you did!