Monday, August 26, 2013

Tell God Your Blasphemous Thoughts

Tell God Your Blasphemous Thoughts

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A reader recently sent in the following question about blasphemous thoughts and the unforgivable sin.
I got your book on the unforgivable sin. What advice can you give for those who suffer with blasphemous thoughts? I have not said anything but they are still upsetting. I am going through a lot of stress right now. I have been having this issue about 2 years now. Any advice is appreciated. I was told just not to accept them (or cry-which I have done). God bless you.
I am glad you got the book. There is so much more I could have said about the unforgivable sin in that little book, and hope to revise and expand it in the future. Maybe this question will get a greater treatment in the book.

What is a Blasphemous Thought?

blasphemous thoughtFirst off, I am not sure what you might consider a “blasphemous thought.” As I have had hundreds of personal and online conversations about the unforgivable sin over the years, I find that lots of people have some sort of idea about what constitutes blasphemous thoughts or actions, but which are not really blasphemous at all. The reason most people have these ideas is because they heard a sermon, read a book, or had a pastor tell them that certain actions or thoughts were blasphemous. But when we really look at the what blasphemy is,  we find that most of these sermons, books, and pastors were simply misinformed or were trying to control other people to act or behave a certain way.
So, to take an extreme case as an example… I have sometimes talked with people who say that they were told that it was blasphemy to question something their pastor taught. They were told that the pastor is “the Lord’s anointed.” Often the pastor will quote Psalm 105:15 as a way of showing that to touch, harm, or question “the Lord’s anointed” is some sort of affront to God. Therefore, to question or challenge the pastor is considered to be some sort of blasphemous challenge to God Himself.
This is an extreme example, to be sure, but it does happen (more than we realize!). But a moment’s reflection reveals that in these cases, the pastor is usually just trying to control people to conform to his own desires, wishes, and commands.
However, I would say that easily 95% of the teaching out there about the “sin of blasphemy” falls into this same category. Usually, what is being taught as blasphemous is not blasphemous at all! Sure, those certain behaviors or actions might be sinful, but there is a vast ocean of difference between sinful thoughts or actions and blasphemous thoughts or actions.
But here’s the thing… I am just going to go out on a limb and guess at what blasphemous thoughts you might be having. Though there is a whole variety of things that people think qualify as blasphemous thoughts or actions, in my experience, there is one main thing that people think is a blasphemous thought.
And it is this… when most people think they have thought or said something blasphemous, it is because they thought or said these words:
F*** you, God! I hate you!
Probably there is not much worse that could be said toward God, and I hesitate even putting such a thing on this blog. If anything qualifies as a blasphemous thought, this is probably it. (Though even here, nowhere does the Bible say that such a statement is blasphemous. In Matthew 12:31-32, when Jesus accuses the Pharisees of being close to committing the unforgivable sin, this is not what the Pharisees were saying, and is not even close to anything they ever would have said…)
So the statement above is not a blasphemous thought, but is still pretty bad, but I wrote it out for a purpose.
If you are saying or thinking these sorts of things toward God, there are two things God wants to say to you in return.

God Wants You to Know He Loves You

The first thing God wants to say to you is this:
Oh yeah? So you hate me, huh? Well guess what?
I love you.
Yeah, that’s right.
I. Love. You.
No matter what, I love you.
No matter what you say or do, no matter what you think, no matter how hurtful your words or thoughts, I will love you forever. My love for you will never change, will never diminish, will never fade away.
Say what you will. Do what you will. I forgive you for all of it, because I love you.
love of GodHow do we know God says this to us, no matter what we say to Him? Because the Bible tells us over and over that He loves us no matter what. While we were yet sinners, God sent His Son Jesus to die for us (John 3:16; Rom 5:8). Love is the essence of who God is (1 John 4:8). Before you were ever born, God knew every sin you would ever commit, every word you would ever say, and all “blasphemous thoughts” you would ever think. And He sent Jesus to die for you anyway! Why? Because He loves you!
More than anything else, God wants to let you know that He loves you and will always love you.

The God you Hate… God Hates Too

But the second thing God would want to say to you in response for any angry or hateful thought you might have about Him is this:
Hey, I understand. In fact, the god you claim to hate is the god I hate too.
The only reason you are having those thoughts or thinking those words is because you thought I was a certain type of god, and I have not turned out to be that way. Your life is going in directions you didn’t think it would go, horrible things have happened to you in life, and you think I did these things to you. Someone told you some wrong things about me, which are not true, and you (rightfully) resent who you think I am for doing these bad things to you.
If I were you, I would resent me too.
But I didn’t send this pain, tragedy, hardship, or evil into your life.
Remember what I told you before? I love you!
I might discipline  you out of love, but when I do, I will make it clear to you what I am doing, and why. Everything else that happens is because the world is full of sin, and the enemy is out to steal, kill, and destroy. Bad things happen in this world, and I am so sorry you have to experience them.
When these bad things happen, my role, my job, my task, is to do what I can to love you through them, to be with you in the pain, to suffer alongside you. This is one reason I sent Jesus. It is also why I sent the Holy Spirit. I am not a god who sends suffering into your life; I am the God who suffers with you in life. I am a god who sends pain so you cry; I am a God who cries with you in your pain.
And regarding what you thought before… you know, those words you said in your head. Thank you for saying them. Really. Many people either try to deny the painful experiences they are facing, or they clam up about their pain and refuse to talk to me about it. But not you. You are honest about your pain and are willing to talk to me about it. Even though your words are hurtful, they show that you continue to want to talk to me and have a relationship with me. Most people just give me the silent treatment. But you haven’t done that. You continue to want to talk. I want that too.
So let me begin by showing you who I really am…
I am not sure if this exactly answers the question that was sent in to me, but in my years of experience as a pastor, author, and blogger, I have found that most people who have fears about blasphemous thoughts and blasphemous words, usually have one of two things going on in their life (and often both). They either a religious leader who is trying to control them, or they have warped and dangerous ideas about who God is and what God is like.
Once we can see that God is not like the angry, fire-hurling deity that is often taught in some churches and by some pastors, but instead looks remarkably like Jesus who loved, accepted, and forgave everybody (except for the religious leaders who tried to use religion to bar the way for people to come to God), it is then that we begin to see how much God loves us, and that no matter what we say or do, His love for us will never change, never waver, never diminish.
It is not a blasphemous thought to think that you hate God.
It is not a blasphemous thought to think that you hate God.
 In fact, if you think you hate God, go talk to Him about what you are feeling, and why you feel that way. He loves to have these open and honest conversations with us about who He truly is and how much He truly loves us… no matter what. Only once we see the love of God, will the thoughts of anger and resentment toward God begin to disappear. So if you are having blasphemous thoughts or ideas toward God, don’t feel bad about them or fear that such thoughts will make God stop loving you. Instead, take those thoughts to God, and say, “God? Do you see what think about you?” Then sit and listen to see what God says in return.
The last thing God wants is for us to shut ourselves off from Him. So if we are having blasphemous thoughts toward God, the best thing we can do is talk to God about them, so that He can show us how much He loves us, and how the God we think we hate is not actually the God He truly is. 

Friday, August 23, 2013

“Now I Have a Burden for Lost Souls”

“Now I Have a Burden for Lost Souls”

August 22, 2013
Facing poverty and persecution in Burma, some two million refugees are seeking a better life in Thailand.
Refugee crises in the Middle East and Africa dominate the headlines, overshadowing a lesser-known but longstanding human drama along the Burmese-Thai border. For 25 years an estimated two million Burmese tribal people have fled their country’s ruthless military regime. They sought sanctuary in Thailand, only to find themselves in even more hard-pressed conditions.
Some eventually obtain official refugee status, but the vast majority are non-registered and thus are treated as illegal aliens. Finding jobs and basic health services creates challenges. If caught by the authorities, they face deportation.
Eleos Ministries reaches out to Burmese tribals in Thailand, demonstrating the love of Jesus Christ by supplying food, clothing, and medicine to those in need. Workers also provide education for refugee children and teach them Bible stories in the Burmese, Thai, and English languages.
Evangelism is a key component of their work, and every year over 2,000 men, women, and children commit their hearts to Christ after attending gospel crusades and youth events. Bibles studies conducted at refugee camps typically draw between 200 and 300 people.
New believers desiring to enter Christian ministry have the opportunity to attend three-month discipleship training programs. About 30 students enroll in each session.
Yonna (name changed) came with a friend to Thailand in 1999. Her life took a new turn when she received Christ as her Savior five years later. In 2011 she graduated from the discipleship training course offered by Eleos, and now she is a gospel worker for the ministry.
The young woman recently shared her testimony:
Students attend discipleship training
I am Yonna from the Union of Myanmar. I am the firstborn of five siblings from Pwo Karen parents. My parents and grandparents were well known among the Buddhist community, as they were staunch in religion. I was brought up in a tightly-disciplined Buddhist family. I practiced meditation since I was a teenager. I did all the things that I had to do as a Buddhist. We moved from our hometown in Karen State to Pegu State in 1996. That was because of my parents, who followed a religious person whom they really respected and worshiped like a god. It caused them to sell the house they owned since the beginning of their marriage.
From there, I came to Bangkok with a friend in 1999. I lost my hope in 2000. I was overwhelmed with sorrow. I had tried to cure it with Buddhist verses that I had memorized and meditated on, but those did not help at all. I was far away from peace. I contacted a Christian friend and went to church with her. That was in 2003. I went to church and sang praise and worship songs with others. I continued singing at home and felt waves of happiness inside. Unconsciously, I accepted that Jesus Christ is the Lord Who is in heaven.
One day the minister preached that believers have joy because they are guaranteed eternal life. They have a safe place to go after death. I was so curious to know that place. I wanted to know about Jesus Christ, such as where did He come from, what He did, and where He is now. My friend gave me a Bible, but I did not read it. I took a rest for my health and joined three months of discipleship training at the church in Bangkok in 2004. I could catch only the last one and a half months, but I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Savior and was baptized on August 1, 2004, at the church in Bangkok.
I now know more of the Word of God. I went along with those who were witnessing and telling the good news and I now have a burden for lost souls. Together with friends we brought 20 people to the church’s indoor evangelistic crusade in December 2010. By His mercy they all confessed that they were sinners and accepted Jesus Christ as personal Savior.
I was concerned for them because I was not able to do follow-up. God spoke to me during three days of summer Bible studies during the Songkran holidays. I felt I needed to follow-up with the new believers. So I took a three-month leave from work and attended discipleship training at the church in Bangkok in 2011. I was going to return to work after three months, but I heard the calling of God through Ezekiel 7:4-6. Then I heard again from Matthew 28:19-20, but I did not feel sure of it and asked for confirmation from God. Then it came! Isaiah 60:1, right after the three months of training. It made me bravely decide to resign the job and do follow-up of the new believers full-time.
Ministry workers distributed tarps and building materials to survivors of the 2011 earthquake.
By the grace of God my youngest sibling, a sister, accepted Jesus Christ in 2007, and the second one, a brother, accepted Jesus Christ in December 2010. He has had water baptism and is walking with God. He also has a burden for lost souls and telling the good news of salvation to friends and neighbors at work.
All in all, I praise the Lord for His mercy and strongly believe that He will lift me up until the end of the journey.
Eleos Ministries works with indigenous Burmese ethnic groups like the Pwo Karen, who still continue the Buddhist or animist practices of their ancestors. Missionaries are blessed to see the fruit of their labors, as these once isolated tribes embrace the truth of God’s Word and become faithful witnesses for Christ.
To assist Eleos in their outreach efforts, Bibles are needed in the Burmese and Karen languages. A Burmese Bible costs $4; Karen Bibles are $7 each. Other Christian materials needed include tracts that can be purchased for $100 per 5,000 pieces.
Use the form below to contribute online to assist indigenous missionaries working in Thailand. Or call 434-977-5650 to contribute by phone. If you prefer to mail your gift, please mail to Christian Aid, P.O. Box 9037, Charlottesville, VA 22906. Please use Gift Code: 720ELM. Thank you!



Open Doors USA Logo
As the violence in Egypt continues, Christians are 
being targeted for their faith. Our brothers and sisters in Christ are facing more persecution than ever before.

Open Doors is on the ground serving these believers, but we need your help. We are sending this urgent appeal to ask you to join with us in prayer and by giving what you can today to help strengthen the church in Egypt.

Thank you for joining with us in serving our brothers and sisters in Egypt.
Open Doors
Help Egypt Now

Friday, August 9, 2013


Dear Friends,

This year we have learned together, shared lives together, prayed together… together we have been One With Them, our brothers and sisters in Christ. The feedback has been awesome and inspiring. Here are just two of the hundreds of letters we received:

“You are special and you are making a difference……READ Hebrews 6:10…this is for everybody who is praying!!!”
- Open Doors Africa team

“Praise the Lord for His wonderful love expressed in the prayers for the Body of Christ in Indonesia. Very much appreciated.”
- Open Doors Indonesia team

Researching and writing these stories alongside committed volunteers has been a passion and a joy. But as wonderful as the journey has been, starting today we will no longer send One With Them daily e-devotional. But you can still be in prayer for brothers and sisters in Christ. Here are just a few ways:

• Register to receive the Weekly Prayer e-Alert 
• Order the International Day of Prayer (IDOP) kit.

On Nov 3, 2013, thousands around world will join in prayer on IDOP Sunday. Consider ordering today your IDOP prayer kit which will give you everything you need for your church to participate in this powerful day of prayer.

Again, we sincerely thank you for your prayers this past year…and your continued prayers as you remain standing One With Them in Christ Jesus.

Serving Him together,

Michele Miller

Director of Prayer and Presence Ministries  

God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.
(Hebrews 6:10))

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

In The Name Of Jesus - Word

In The Name Of Jesus - Word

Artificial islands, gravity-defying architecture, a grand mosque featuring an impressive light show, the world’s largest indoor theme park where you can snow ski or ride the world’s fastest rollercoaster … in Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), everything seems possible.

The UAE consist of seven emirates which have their own rulers and were united in a federal state in the early 70s. While the UAE had depended on the fish and pearl industries, this all changed after oil was discovered. Once a desert community, it is now a playground for the rich.

Far removed from the glitter and spotlight, unknown to most citizens and tourists, lays the remains of a 1,400-year-old monastery. The Christian site at Sir Bani Yas Island in Abu Dhabi dates back to around 600AD. Built by a community of 30 to 40 monks, it is understood to have been established by pilgrims travelling from India. Once populated by Christians; this discovery is the only pre-Islamic Christian site remaining in the region.

Today, all UAE citizens are defined as Muslims. But, with less than 15 per cent of the population citizens, the majority of the UAE’s inhabitants are of other faiths. This is great news! Because most who live in the UAE are immigrant workers, and because the constitution allows relative freedom of religion, there lies the possibility for the gospel to come into the country... and grow.

Non-Muslim groups are allowed to worship in dedicated buildings or private homes. Even the ruling families of the local Emirates have granted land and allowed compounds to be built for different Christian denominations. Today, there are more than 40 churches buildings in the UAE. On most Fridays, the recognized day of worship in the Middle East, several churches in the UAE are filled to the capacity. And, on special occasions due to overflow, churches are even allowed to hold services in open court yards. 

As unrestricted as this may seem, permits allowing construction of additional facilities are hard to obtain, and evangelizing Muslims is prohibited. Because of this most churches apply self-censorship by only accepting converts from religions other than Islam. But even this has not stopped new converts from coming to Christ.

One With Them

As you pray on this final day of Ramadan, pray for a break-through in the UAE; praying against the quest for materialism. Ask the Lord to place a desire on the hearts of UAE citizens to seek true riches found in a relationship with Christ. Today, as you stand one with Christians in the UAE, pray for opportunities to share the Word, and through the Word, may they be drawn to Christ.


“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
(John 1:1)

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

In The Name Of Jesus - Truth

In The Name Of Jesus - Truth
Once a role model for peace in Africa, Tanzania is no longer considered “safe” after an increase in inter-faith violence. The push toward Islam is less violent on the mainland, but on the predominantly Muslim Zanzibar archipelago, Islamic militants, bent on wiping out all Christians from the islands, have burned and looted churches and threatened Christians with death.

However, even on the mainland, persecution has intensified. In 2012, four young men responded to the gospel during a door-to-door evangelism campaign in an area that is almost 100 percent Muslim. While still new in their faith, these young men began receiving threats against their lives. Led by a local Sheikh, their former friends pressured them to recant their new faith, but through the power of Christ in them they remained steadfast.

Disowned by their families, they turned to pastors in nearby villages to take them in, but were refused. The pastors fearing if they helped the men more strife would develop between the Christian community and the area Muslims. The men were forced to flee until things cooled off.

One With Them

Stand One With Them today, for Christians in Tanzania, praying for the struggling Christian community on both on Zanzibar Island and the mainland. Pray for church leaders as they seek ways to disciple new Muslim Background Believers. During these last days of Ramadan, pray especially for Muslims as they seek God, that they might to turn from the darkness of Islam to Christ, the Truth.


Muslim converts often need an urgent refuge in which to hide after being disowned, threatened and harmed by relatives. They need continuous protection and special care and discipleship. Consider helping provide believers who are most in danger with safe house protection, discipleship and basic necessities. 


"I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
(John 14:6)

Monday, August 5, 2013

In The Name of Jesus - Rock

In The Name of Jesus - Rock 
Imagine being called a traitor… simply because you are Christian. Imagine enduring police raids, or your house searched because you met with friends for prayer. Imagine losing your job… because of your faith in Jesus.

These are just a few of the difficulties that Christians in Azerbaijan face.

Due to its strategic location, at the crossroads between the East and West, with Russia, Iran, Georgia and Turkey in its proximity, many political and ideological powers would like to expand their influence in Azerbaijan. In addition, neighboring Iran is trying to expand its spiritual influence, where an estimated 18 million Iranians speak Azeri as their first language. Official statistics say that the population of Azerbaijan is 90% Muslim... and is growing.

Trying to maintain a secular state, the government’s is deeply concerned about the potential rise of Islamic fundamentalism. This means that all religious groups are strictly monitored; including Christians. But, as the nation continues to harbor lingering resentment towards its arch enemy Armenia, the Christian community often falls under even greater scrutiny by government and society due to the fact that Christianity is associated with Armenia. 

The pressure is constant and increasing for Christians. In an effort to control its citizens the government required all churches and religious groups to renew their registration by January 1, 2010. But, since that date, no new churches have been able to register, and fewer and fewer churches can function legally. Almost all Protestant denominations are still without legal status, and private homes cannot be used for holding religious services.

One With Them

Stand One With Them, as you pray for our brothers and sisters living in Azerbaijan to find solace in Jesus, their spiritual rock, “and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.” (Matthew 16:18).

Father God, we pray first and foremost for unity among the different nominations of churches in Azerbaijan; we are all one Body in Christ Jesus and we ask that You knit thier heart and minds together, completely, with Your Spirit. Father, many churches have submitted application for registration and have been waiting for years; we pray today for a breakthrough with the government, and that registration will be granted. Also Father, our hearts are concerned for the children. Please send workers to be involved in children’s ministry so that children in Azerbaijan will grow up strong in faith, and will not succumb to pressures from society. And lastly Father, with a high level of unemployment in the country, it is even harder for Christians to find a job. Many young people are leaving the country to find work elsewhere, and in some churches only the elderly people are left. We stand united in prayer for an increase in job opportunities. Father we give you thanks in advance for the wonderful things that You are doing, and will do, in this pivotal nation. Praying in the name of Jesus, our rock. Amen 

… for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ.
(1 Corinthians 10:4) 

In The Name Of Jesus - True Vine

In The Name Of Jesus - True Vine

The Comoros, known as the Perfume Isles, export around 80% of the world's supply of ylang ylang essence, an essential oil that is the main ingredient of most expensive perfumes. Even while still growing on the tree, the yellow flower used to make ylang ylang has a strong, sweet fragrance. Walking through the fields where these yellow flowers grow, some say, is like "walking in heaven."

These islands, haphazardly scattered across the Indian Ocean are mysterious and enchanting. Far removed from the rest of the world, according to Operation World, were almost completely unevangelized before 1973. Rich in Swahili culture, and devoutly Muslim, the inhabitants of Comoros come from a legendary stock of Arab traders, Persian sultans, African slaves and Portuguese pirates. The islands, rimmed with white-sand beaches and turquoise water, to most would truly feel like heaven on earth.

But as “heavenly” as it may seem, Islam is the state religion and Islamic fundamentalism is on the rise. Muslim Background Believers (MBB) are forced to worship in underground fellowships because police, mosque leaders and extremists are determined to convert them back to Islam. On a bright note, their relatives in many cases have accepted their new faith, and MBB’s are slowly gaining some acceptance in some parts of society.

One With Them

Sweet aromas have been a prized possession through-out history. In scripture when the Magi presented Jesus with gifts, two of the three, frankincense and myrrh, were precious oils. Today, as you are One With Them, give thanks that many MBB’s have been accepted by their families. And pray during Ramadan, that the presence of the Holy Spirit in their lives, will draw their family and friends to embrace the true “sweet fragrance”  that comes with a life surrendered completely to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. 


"There are many challenges, but the Lord is working through us," says one former Muslim who is now following Jesus. "Your training helps us to be effective in our ministry to the Muslim community." Consider a gift that will enable a Muslim convert to a attend a special seminar to learn how to reach his Muslim friends and family with the gospel.


“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.”
(John 15:1)

Sunday, August 4, 2013

In The Name of Jesus Savior

In The Name of Jesus  Savior
Allah, the Arabic term for God, which has been used in religious and cultural contexts before the dawn of Islam, and has been used in Bibles in the Malay language and litany for more than 400 years, has recently become under scrutiny. At the root of the Allah tug-of-war is the official view that Malaysian Muslims might be confused if Christians also use the word to describe God.

The controversy first surfaced in 2009 when the Herald, a Malaysian Catholic weekly newspaper, mounted a legal challenge against the government after it had been ordered to stop using the word Allah. After much discussion, the High Court ruled that Allah was not restricted to Muslims, and the Catholic Church had the right to publish the word in the Malay language section of its weekly newspaper.

On January 22, 2013, a note sent to a Christian priest announced that a Bible-burning “pesta” or festival would take place in the town’s public park. The note, written in Malay, ended with a sinister warning in English: “Let’s teach ‘em a lesson.” Although the pesta did not occur, it has had the desired effect of adding to the fear and despair of Christians in Malaysia.

Though a secular state and culturally diverse; life in Malaysia is strongly influenced by Islam. During Ramadan 2012, the Prime Minister announced that Islam will always supersede politics. This year, during the May 2013 election season, minority Christians began taking a bold political stand as they were asked by their churches to pray for political leaders who were honest, and to elect a government that values liberty and religious freedom. In response, explosive devices were planted near opposition rally sites, and there were more than 2000 cases of arson. Motorcycle gangs of Malay Muslims roamed towns and venues to intimidate people from attending opposition rallies.

One With Them

Malaysia is trying to preserve what it perceives as its national and cultural heritage. As being Malay is seen as being a Muslim, citizens with other ethnic origins such as Chinese or Indian can be Buddhist, Hindu or Christian, but Malays have to be Muslim. Stand One With Them, with Christians in Malaysia, especially those of Malay descent who do not have a government they can turn to for help. As Ramadan nears the end for this year, pray for them as they turn their eyes to their Savior who hears their cries and strengthens them as they walk with Him on this difficult journey.  


Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.
(Luke 2:11)

Friday, August 2, 2013

In The Name of Jesus - Prince Of Peace

In The Name of Jesus - Prince Of Peace

Sudan, known worldwide for its inhumane treatment of the people of Darfur, was divided in 2011 forming two states—Sudan and South Sudan. The Sudanese government (in the north) quickly announced its intention to implement Islamic law and began persecuting the Christian minority.

Salwa Fahmmi Suleiman Gireis, a 64-year-old Sudanese Christian woman, an accountant by profession, was arrested on February 12, 2013 when four men, who identified themselves as members of Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services, entered her house and arrested her without providing a reason. Later that same day, the men returned and confiscated her passport and all of the house’s electronic equipment, including laptops, a desktop computer, tablets and a router. The next day, plain-clothed men proceeded to cause havoc at her family’s farm by killing pigs, stealing a motorcycle and sealing up cupboards containing the family’s Bibles. 

During seven weeks of detention Salwa was denied access to a lawyer and her family was only allowed to visit her once. And then, on April 2, she was released following Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir’s order to release all political detainees. A family member said that “It was a joy to reunite with her brothers and sisters from church for worship, as many have been praying and fasting for her.”

One With Them

Can you imagine being arrested simply because you are a Christian? Many believers, like Salwa, have been arrested and detained since the division of the country. And yet, with the majority of Sudan’s population Muslim, the number of believers is rising! Stand One With Them, with Christians in Sudan, in awe of our Almighty God, who even in the midst of struggle and conflict, He can fill us with peace. Pray during Ramadan, for Muslims in Sudan who are seeking favor with God, to find the true source of peace in Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace!

War, drought and discrimination have left South Sundanese Christian pastors untrained and isolated. Consider being a lifeline to a pastor by providing an intensive week of leadership training, as well as theological books. Your gift will also cover the travel costs for a pastor to attend this vital training in this remote and dangerous area.


“For to us a child is born… and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called… Prince of Peace.”
(Isaiah 9:6)

In The Name Of Jesus - Redeemer

In The Name Of Jesus - Redeemer
Mauritania is one of the world’s poorest countries. With only 4% of the land being arable, one third of the children are malnourished. Isolated from the rest of the world because of its desert landscape and rule by an oppressive regime, Mauritania appears to have been forgotten by the international community.

Islam has been entrenched in Mauritania for 1000 years with little challenge. There are many barriers for the gospel reaching its citizens including, low literacy rates, no Scriptures completed in Hassaniya Arabic, only a few local radio broadcasts from Senegal, and laws that forbid Mauritanians from hearing the gospel or believing in Jesus. Mauritania is proud to be “officially” a pure Muslim country.

For followers of Christ life is difficult. Pressure on Muslim Background Believers from family, tribe members and leaders of local mosques, is very high. It is impossible for Mauritanian Christians to register their churches, so they must meet in secret.

Fortunately, in past years only a few violent incidents against Christians have been recorded. This is not a sign of the absence of persecution. In fact, in Mauritania, the pressure on Christians is so high they can hardly openly express their faith, and are unable to witness.

In early July 2011, prominent Imams requested that the Mauritanian parliament protect the Mauritanian people from hearing the gospel and reject every Christian organization from working in the country. On a bright side, there is limited freedom for expat churches, but even for expats residing in the country, being Christian is complicated.

One With Them

Mauritania is a desperate nation looking for both relief and hope. It is extremely difficult for Christian mission organizations to operate relief aid with-in the country due to the harsh climate(sandstorms 200 days a year and oppressive heat), and governmental restrictions and hostility towards anything Christian. Be One With Them today, as you pray specifically for Jesus, the Redeemer, to save Mauritania from the grip of spiritual darkness, and bring them to a place of hope. 


Learn more about Mauritania ranked #23 on the Open Doors World Watch List of countries in the world where persecution of Christians is most severe.   


I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth.
(Job 19:25)