I imagined thirty-three of my Christian friends executed for leading people to Christ, facilitating worship, praying, or offering praise to God...
Worship will be different for me this week, with the report of 33 gunshots bouncing around the inner chamber of my soul.
They'll Be Dead By Morning (What Difference Will It Make?) by Lori from Deeper With Jesus in Rhode Island
The people in Asia have been on my heart a lot lately as Princess and I have been reading through the book, Asia: It's People and History. Now I read this article today and my heart is breaking! It is so hard to imagine what Christians in other countries have to face! I have a hard time sharing my faith because I worry that I'll offend someone, or that they won't like me if I "push" my "religion" on them. Yet these 33 Christians in North Korea are being executed for the things that I don't even think about - simply going to church, reading their Bibles and worshiping God with other believers.
I'm not sure exactly when the execution was supposed to take place. For all I know, those 33 Christians are already dead. Their suffering has ended. They are with their beloved Saviour. But for their loved ones and the other Christians left behind in North Korea, their pain must be intense! I can only imagine the sorrow and fear they must be facing! I wish I could do something to help them. All I can do is learn from this, remembering the sacrifice my brothers and sisters in North Korea are making on a daily basis, risking their lives to share Jesus, or even just worship Him. And I can pray. Maybe even more importantly, I can teach my children to pray.
I considered not saying anything to my children about this. It is a gruesome thing. Their little hearts are so innocent and the thought of people being killed for doing the very things we do every day, might scare them. Yet, I know that the prayers of little children are powerful. Yes, all prayers are heard by God, but I believe that God has a special place in His heart for the children. There is something extremely powerful and touching about hearing my children's heartfelt prayers.
My two youngest children were already in bed when I read about this, but Princess was sitting nearby. She noticed that I was upset and she asked me about it. I pulled her onto my lap and explained to her what I had read. She had questions, of course. I answered them the best I could. Then we bowed our heads and prayed together. We prayed for the 33 Christians, if they are still alive. We prayed for the loved ones left behind. We prayed for the other Christians in North Korea. We prayed that God will do wonderful things in North Korea, bringing many others to salvation in Him, even using this horrible event to draw people to Himself. And we prayed for Kim Jong-un, the tyrant leader of North Korea who ordered the executions of those Christians. Princess prayed that God would help him realize that what he is doing is wrong. She prayed that God would save him from his sin.
I don't know what God has in store for my children. I hope they never have to face such persecution and pain in their lives as the Christians in North Korea are facing right now! But even more than that, I pray that they will grow up to become godly adults who will fight the evil in this world. At this time in our lives we can not go to places like North Korea and offer physical aid to our brothers and sisters there. But we can pray. And I will do my best to help my children develop a heart for people around the world and to become the prayer warriors that God has called us to be!
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