For our brothers and sisters...
Today, I got to pull out a batch of stones from their final soak. (The above picture is a batch before and a batch after.) As I was rinsing and scrubbing them, the song above just kept playing over and over in my head. I am so thankful for Jesus! I am so thankful that He endured such pain on the cross for me and for you! I am so thankful that because he poured out His life for us, we get to experience grace and forgiveness. We get to have the hope of eternity! It doesn't matter what you've done or who you are. The Bible is full of redemption stories. We all can experience the redeeming love of Christ.
One week ago, a video was released of 21 Christian men being beheaded. They knelt on their knees as all at once their heads were cut off by another mans sword. I believe the time is now for us to kneel on our knees and cry out on their behalf.
Psalms 133:1 -- How good and how pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity.
Let me tell you that to these men, to their families, and to their murderers, denominations mean nothing. So why do we continue to allow denominations to divide The Church? There are Christians being persecuted and losing their lives for the gospel all over this world. So let's focus on these issues rather than splitting hairs.
I believe that we need to ban together, as brothers and sisters in Christ and dwell in unity through prayer. I believe that we need to cry out for the hearts of those who allow blood to spill at their feet-- that their hearts would be softened and that just like Saul even just one of them would have an encounter with the One True God and become a catalyst for revival. I believe we need to be in unity in praying for our persecuted brothers and sisters-- that they would remain bold and courageous and encouraged rather than becoming overcome and silenced by fear.
The news of this past week has shaken me to my core. It is all too easy to sit in the comfort of our homes and our churches and forget that that is simply a comfort that many do not have. I ask that you would join me in praying for our brothers and sisters all over the world. And I ask that the next time you think someone might judge you for being "people of the cross", that you would be grateful and remember that others our dying for those same beliefs.
**For an excellent article on how to pray from scripture for the persecuted church, please click here.**