CUBA Pastor’s Wife: “God Removed My Fear”
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Episodes

  • CUBA Pastor’s Wife: “God Removed My Fear”

    As a teenager in Cuba, “Maria” encountered the book Tortured For Christ, written by VOM’s founder, Pastor Richard Wurmbrand—when she was told to burn the books before Cuban authorities could find them and arrest her father!

    Today, Maria and her husband, “Pedro,” help VOM serve persecuted Christians in Cuba and other Latin American nations. Listen as they share a recent experience when Cuban authorities issued an arrest warrant for Pedro, and how Pedro and Maria experienced the prayers of Christians around the world in that time of pressure and trial.

    Listen also to learn how Cuban pastors are pressured by communist authorities, and whether or not anything changed for Cuban Christians after the death of Fidel Castro.

    Bonus content: This is release week for the new book, When Faith is Forbidden: 40 Days on the Frontlines With Persecuted Christians, written by VOM Radio host, Todd Nettleton. We’ve posted the first two chapters of the audiobook version into the podcast stream. Listen to:  Departure Day: Preflight Checklist and Day 1: Beyond Our Control.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast.

    24 MIN
  • When Faith is Forbidden: Audiobook Preview | Day One

    This is release week for VOM Radio host Todd Nettleton’s new book: When Faith is Forbidden: 40 Days on the Frontlines with Persecuted Christians, published by Moody Publishers.

    In this special bonus episode, VOM Radio listeners can hear a preview of the audiobook version, which will be available soon wherever audiobooks are distributed. Today’s chapter is Day 1: Beyond Our Control.

    You can learn more about the book, and order your copy, at www.WhenFaithIsForbidden.com.

    Also, be sure to register to be a part of this weekend’s Imprisoned For Christ Virtual Event and watch as Todd interviews former prisoners for Christ (and former VOM Radio guests), Dan Baumann and Pastor Andrew Brunson.

    11 MIN
  • When Faith is Forbidden: Audiobook Preview | Departure Day

    Today is release day for VOM Radio host Todd Nettleton’s new book: When Faith is Forbidden: 40 Days on the Frontlines with Persecuted Christians, published by Moody Publishers.

    In this special bonus episode, VOM Radio listeners can hear a preview of the book: the first chapter of the audio book, available soon wherever audiobooks are distributed.

    You can learn more about the book, and order your copy, at www.WhenFaithIsForbidden.com.

    13 MIN
  • NEW BOOK: When Faith is Forbidden

    We’re trading chairs this week on VOM Radio! Todd Nettleton has a new book releasing March 2 from Moody Publishers: When Faith is Forbidden: 40 Days on the Frontlines With Persecuted Christians. So he’s in the guest chair this week, and Janet Parshall—nationally syndicated host of In The Market With Janet Parshall—has graciously agreed to fill in as our VOM Radio host for the week.

    Todd’s new book contains 40 of the most powerful and inspiring stories he’s heard in interviews with persecuted Christians over the past 20+ years. He’ll also share a little of how God brought him to work at VOM, including time as a missionary kid in Papua New Guinea.

    You can learn more about When Faith is Forbidden, including links to order your copy, at www.WhenFaithIsForbidden.com. In celebration of the book’s launch, we’ll offer the first two readings from the audio book version in the podcast stream next week. So be sure to subscribe to the VOM Radio podcast!

    Don’t forget to register for the Imprisoned For Christ Virtual Event, coming up on March 5.

    35 MIN
  • BIBLE SMUGGLING: “We Didn’t Come Here To Be Safe”

    “Joe” was in prison in the United States—justly, he says. As a young man his life was filled with drugs and crime. A fellow prisoner gave Joe a Bible, and Joe’s life was transformed as he found forgiveness and surrendered his life to Jesus Christ.

    Having seen the power of God’s Word first-hand, Joe committed his life to getting Bibles to as many people as possible. He and his wife, “Dawn,” are now part of a team delivering Bibles into the Islamic Republic of Iran. It’s dangerous work, but Joe and Dawn have counted the cost and answered God’s call.

    Joe will tell his story of salvation, and share about the work he’s doing today—including how God allowed Bibles to be delivered throughout the coronavirus pandemic. Dawn will explain how she thinks about the danger her family is in—including making peace with the fact that her children are at risk.

    They’ll also help equip listeners to pray for Bible delivery work into Iran and also around the world.

    Never miss an episode! Subscribe to the podcast.

    32 MIN
  • IMPRISONED IN CHINA: God is With Me Anytime, Anywhere

    Cheng Jie, whose English name is “Esther,” was the wife of a pastor in China. She and her husband had discussed the idea that he could be arrested and go to prison for his Christian work. They hadn’t believed that she would be targeted by the communist government. But in 2014 she was called to the police station for a “meeting” about the school Esther was running. The meeting with police turned into Esther’s arrest and two years in a Chinese prison.

    At the time of her arrest, Esther’s sons were aged 3 and 1. Listen to her share how they were affected by her arrest and imprisonment—and even the challenges after she was released and returned home.

    She’ll also talk about how God enabled her to have a ministry in the prison—and even the prison guards saw the difference her ministry made.

    While she was in prison, Cheng Jie was among the prisoners featured on VOM’s web site that enables Christians to write letters to prisoners. Listen to hear her speak directly to those that prayed for her and wrote letters to her while she was in prison, and advise how we can pray for Christians in prison today.

    Never miss and episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast.

    31 MIN
  • MISSIONS: An Absolute Guarantee Jesus Will Be With Us

    As a college student in San Francisco, Brother Kevin explored many avenues of spirituality, including pursuing Zen Buddhism and Transcendental Meditation. But an experience of darkness caused him to call out for Jesus, and Christ revealed himself to Kevin as both real and powerful.

    Since that day, Kevin has wanted to tell people about Jesus, including Muslims, Hindus and people of other faiths. Today he helps lead YWAM Frontier Missions, sending workers to share the gospel in places where Jesus’ name is completely unknown.

    It’s not an easy work. Kevin will share stories of gospel workers he’s sent out who have been arrested, beaten, kidnapped and even killed. Kevin says he’s seen blessing come out of even very difficult circumstances—and he’s thankful for the unique role that VOM plays in helping Christians enduring persecution.

    He will also share how he prays on certain days each week for Muslims and Hindus to come to Christ. If you’d like guides to help you pray with Kevin visit www.pray30days.org (Muslims) and www.pray15days.org (Hindus and Buddhists).

    24 MIN
  • CUBA: “My Fear Shrinks”

    “Brother Joshua” is a church leader in Cuba. He says for Christians on the island, persecution is expected. Police regularly call Joshua in for interrogation, and he says every time they call he feels intimidation and fear about what might happen. But he says as the questioning begins he can feel God’s presence and God’s provision of an answer for each question. And as he senses God’s power taking over, he says his fear shrinks and disappears.

    Joshua will give an update on the persecution of the church in Cuba, including one church which recently had its building demolished by the government. Have things changed for the church since the death of Fidel Castro? How difficult is it for Christians to get Bibles? How do pastors deal with the knowledge that every time they preach, government spies are present to watch, listen and cause problems?

    You’ll also hear about an opportunity to spend an evening hearing from three former prisoners for Christ: the Imprisoned For Christ Virtual Event, coming up March 5. Get more information and register—it’s free—here. You can also sign your church up as a host site for this virtual event.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast.

    24 MIN
  • Unleashing Gospel Resources Around the World

    Reed Olson helps VOM to get Bibles and other Christian materials into hostile and restricted nations around the world. Listen to Reed share about God’s call on his life, and his excitement to use every hour, every tool and every possible channel to deliver to every person God’s life-changing Word.

    He’ll also share how VOM resources are being translated and delivered freely into hostile and restricted nations around the world—in some cases connecting Christians facing persecution in different countries who pray for and inspire each other. Finally, he’ll update how the church in Latin America is growing and becoming a great missionary-sending church.

    VOM Radio listeners can access many of these free resources at www.VM1.global.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast.

    24 MIN
  • In The Presence of My Enemies

    Martin and Gracia Burnham were serving as missionaries in the Philippines, where Martin was a pilot with New Tribes Mission (now called Ethnos 360). The Burnhams went away for a few days to celebrate their wedding anniversary. Those few days turned into more than a year in the jungle when they were kidnapped and held hostage by radical Muslim terrorists.

    Listen this week as Gracia tells how she wrestled with God and even with her own faith during those dark days of captivity. She’ll also share how she experienced the prayers of God’s people, even as Martin was killed during a rescue attempt.

    Gracia says at times in the jungle she couldn’t allow herself to even think about her three children because it was just to difficult. Yet now she knows the full story of God’s faithfulness to them. She will also give an update on how God continues to work in the hearts of the terrorists that held them hostage.

    Gracia’s story will inspire you to find ways to glorify God, regardless of what challenges you may be facing. You can read the whole story in her book, In the Presence of My Enemies (affiliate link).

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast.

    24 MIN
  • MISSIONS: Partner With God

    C. Anderson is a leader in Frontier Missions for YWAM – Youth With a Mission. She’s developed a course based on the principles of II Timothy 2:2 with the aim of developing DMM—Disciple Making Movements.

    Anderson was born an MK in Africa, but after traumatic experiences in her youth she decided she would never live anywhere she felt unsafe. Yet God called her to lay down that need for safety to answer His call to missions, and gave her the grace to answer His call.

    Listen to learn how DMMs are developing and growing, and how the Biblical principles cross national and ethnic boundaries to grow and build the church in many nations, including India, Iraq, Afghanistan and southeast Asia.

    The course Anderson developed, “Getting Started in Disciple Making Movements,” is available online. Anderson will tell us how she felt God leading her to develop the course for use online before the coronavirus pandemic hit—and has seen the fruit of the course explode during the past 12 months. She’ll also speak specifically about next steps for those feeling called to missions, and equip us to pray for church leaders and church planters all over the world.

    27 MIN
  • Serving Persecuted Christians in 2021

    This week we look ahead to VOM’s work serving persecuted Christians in 2021 with VOM’s President, Cole Richards, and Vice President for International Ministry, Jonathan Ekman.

    Jonathan will give an update on the two countries added to VOM’s 2021 Global Prayer Map—Burkina Faso and Cameroon—and how persecution of Christians in those nations is increasing, and how VOM is responding to help the church. He’ll also talk about what those changes mean for VOM’s work and workers, and how efforts are already underway to effectively serve Christians in those nations.

    You’ll be inspired by the story of an African pastor who chooses to stay and serve in a place where he knows his life is at risk, and the reason he stays.

    Cole and Jonathan will help listeners understand the rise of radical Islam in Africa, and how the growth of such ideology affects our Christian brothers and sisters. Jonathan will also explain the growing need for help in the Central African Republic and in Ethiopia, two countries where persecution is growing and the needs of persecuted Christians are, at times, overwhelming.

    Cole will discuss how VOM helps listeners and magazine readers understand the upheaval around the world and how the Body of Christ is affected by each situation. He will also talk about how American Christians are inspired to learn what Biblical discipleship looks like—and are growing to understand that even in the United States Christians may be called on to pay a price for their faith.

    Cole will also preview some of the ways VOM will continue to tell the stories of persecuted Christians in 2021, including a coming feature film focusing especially on the life and faith of Sabina Wurmbrand and a new book written by VOM Radio host, Todd Nettleton.

    How do we allow these stories to inspire us—and inspire our children and grandchildren—that boldly following Christ, and being willing to sacrifice for following Him, is what normal Christianity looks like?

    Begin 2021 with an in-depth discussion of what it means to follow Christ and truly live for Him. Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast. Please also share VOM Radio with a Christian friend.

    40 MIN
  • Moving Moments of 2020 – Part 2

    Join this week as we continue our look back on some of the amazing testimonies God allowed VOM Radio to share this year:

    • Pam tells us about Muslim women coming to faith in Christ, including one who saw that her Christian friends were different, and wondered why.
    • Amin tells how he began reading the Bible as a committed Muslim teenager, studying the book to try to prove why the Bible was wrong. But in the end, reading God’s Word led him to Jesus Christ.
    • Brother Bayram came to faith after someone gave him a New Testament. When he told his family in Turkey of his new faith, persecution began immediately.
    • Living in Iran, Omid had a dream in which he saw a man in white give him a wrapped gift. The next day, his taxi driver gave him a gift that looked very much like the gift he’d been given in his dream. Inside was a Bible, a book that would change Omid’s life.
    • Brother John tells about a young family in Syria finding Christ in the midst of their child’s medical crisis, and how Jesus gave them hope and joy.
    • Ali tells us how God healed two Christians in Iran from COVID-19. They were in separate hospitals, but each had the same dream on the same night, and walked out of the hospital completely healed!
    • Brother Jeremy recalls meeting the family of Pastor Jean Paul Sankagui, who had been martyred just days earlier in The Central African Republic.

    After hearing these brief excerpts, you’ll want to go back and listen to the entire conversations. You can search for VOM Radio on your favorite podcast app, or listen online at the links below.

    You’ll also want to listen to the first part of our look back on 2020 in last week’s episode.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts. Also: share a link to VOM Radio with a Christian friend who will also be blessed by these testimonies.

    24 MIN
  • Moving Moments of 2020 – Part 1

    Join in as we begin a look back on some of the amazing testimonies God allowed VOM Radio to share this year:

    • Brother Paul from Nigeria tells how he heard the Lord’s voice telling him to get off the bus he was on. Moments after he obeyed, that bus was attacked by terrorists and he realized God had spared his life.
    • Sean Paton tells the story of a pastor and his family executed by Islamists in Burkina Faso after refusing to deny Christ.
    • Aaron Miller explains why some Christian leaders in Colombia would rather not be called pastor, and how church leaders in India are preparing for the increased persecution they’re sure is coming.
    • Ebrahim Firouzi shared from inside Iran, where he’s still being held in internal exile. He told how prosecutors encouraged him to renounce his faith in Christ and go free—an offer Ebrahim refused.
    • Joy Subasiguller shared about choosing to be grateful to God, even as she faced expulsion from Turkey, the nation where she’d lived for 10 years and where her children were born. VOM Radio host, Todd Nettleton, will also give an update on what has happened with Joy’s case since our original broadcast.
    • Finally, Will Hart, CEO of Iris Global, will share about learning to lay down his life—and even his wife’s safety—in answer to God’s call.

    After hearing these brief excerpts, you’ll want to go back and listen to the entire conversations. You can search for VOM Radio on your favorite podcast app, or listen online at the links below.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts. Also: share a link to VOM Radio with a Christian friend who will also be blessed by these testimonies.

    24 MIN
  • IRAN: “This Is My Plan”

    Sitting in a solitary confinement cell in Iran, Robert Aserian felt God comforting him with these words: “If you are here, it is My plan.” God had prepared him for prison in a unique way: as a pastor he’d counseled many Iranian Christians after they’d suffered imprisonment, so he knew some of the challenge he would face.

    Listen as Robert shares the challenges of interrogation, prison and solitary confinement. One way Robert passed the time in solitary confinement was composing and preaching sermons—even though his congregation wasn’t there to hear them. He also tells how every prisoner goes through difficult times in prison, and how he responded during those difficult days.

    Robert will also discusses how former prisoners face intense pressure and isolation after they’re released, and tell us that praying for prisoners after their release may be more important even than during their time in prison. Finally he’ll equip us to pray for the nation of Iran and for the church there.

    Rev. Robert Aserian serves today as Director for Training at Pars Theological Centre, training and equipping leaders for the Iranian Church. You can hear conversations with other leaders of Pars here and here.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio. Subscribe to the podcast!

    24 MIN
  • IRAN: From Atheist to Persecuted Pastor

    When Robert Aserian first prayed to Jesus, it was an atheist’s prayer: I don’t know if you are real, Jesus, but if You are please show Yourself to me. Jesus answered that prayer, and Robert has been following Him passionately—and encouraging others, including Iranian Muslims, also to follow—ever since. He even taught a class on Christian theology to Islamic clergy members.

    Listen to Robert’s story of coming to faith, then experiencing God’s call to ministry. Robert will share about different martyrs of the church in Iran he knew and learned from, and describe how their legacy emboldened him to serve Christ inside the Islamic Republic, no matter what persecution he might face—including the day authorities came to his house early in the morning to take him to prison.

    Today, Rev. Robert Aserian is the Director for Training at Pars Theological Centre, training and equipping leaders for the Iranian Church. You can hear conversations with other leaders of Pars here and here. You can also hear directly from children of some of the martyrs Rev. Aserian was inspired by, including the son of Pastor Haik Hovsepian and the daughter of Pastor Hossein Soodmand.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio. Subscribe to the podcast!

    24 MIN
  • UZBEKISTAN: Scripture Came To Life

    In the midst of his persecution, Pastor Dmitry “David” Shestakov remembered Christ on the cross, and determined in his heart that if Christ suffered willingly, David also would persevere through his time of suffering.

    As a young man, David was a criminal and a drug user. His mother’s desperate prayer to God—even though she was an atheist—led to Shestakov surrendering his life to Christ. Once surrendered, he immediately began to tell others about Jesus. He knew, early on, that such witness would be costly.

    Listen to how God used letters written by VOM readers via www.PrisonerAlert.com to bless and protect David while he was in prison in Uzbekistan—even saving him from being beaten by guards. You’ll also hear how the Uzbek government tried to add years to his sentence, but God miraculously moved and David was released, as he says, “like a Scripture came to life.”

    David will also help us know how to pray for Christians currently in prison, and for their family members.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast.

    24 MIN
  • IRAN: COVID is the Catalyst

    2020 has been eventful everywhere! But it has been especially eventful for the people of The Islamic Republic of Iran. But in the midst of great challenges—health, economic, political—God is moving! “Ali” is sharing the gospel inside Iran. Listen as he shares how God is even using the COVID-19 pandemic as a catalyst to spread the gospel and grow the church.

    Ali will share how God answered prayers for new strategies for gospel workers to use in the midst of the pandemic and national lockdowns. He’ll also share how Jesus miraculously healed two church leaders hospitalized with COVID-19.

    Ali will tell more stories of God’s power at work in Iran. Listen for the story of one man’s dramatic encounter with Christ that opened the way for 250 people to commit their lives to Jesus.

    This spiritual revival isn’t coming without a price; persecution is very real. Ali and his church leaders understand that “suffering is not a bad thing” when it is God’s plan. “We have to learn,” he says, “to suffer well.” Ali will equip us to pray for Iran in the midst of current challenges, and talk about how the move of God in Iran is crossing international borders to reach surrounding nations.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast.

    24 MIN
  • MISSIONS: The Enemy Wants Us to Be Quiet

    The phone message was clear: “We know you are there! And we’re going to kill you!”

    Todd Lafferty received that phone message as he was preparing to host a meeting of Christian leaders in his home. He had to decide how much risk he was willing to take to continue spreading the gospel.

    This week we continue our conversation with Todd about his experience as a missionary in Southeast Asia and his work now helping lead the International Mission Board.

    He’ll share a story of God’s work among an unreached people group in Southeast Asia, and how not even persecution could stop the spread of the gospel. What powered that work? Todd will share about a women’s prayer group that agreed to pray specifically every day—and how God answered their prayers.

    Listen to Todd share how every listener can reach out to Muslims—and gives advice about how to prepare for those conversations. He’ll also talk about the first steps for people sensing God’s call to missions, and equip us to pray for gospel work around the world.

    If you missed it, listen to the first part of our conversation with Todd. Please share this episode with your Christian friends; especially those considering a call to missions or Christian service.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast.

    24 MIN
  • MISSIONS: If I Die Here…

    Todd Lafferty came to Christ as a college football player. It wasn’t long after coming to faith that he sensed God’s call to go and tell others—even others living outside the United States. He and his wife answered that call, serving in the United Kingdom and eventually in Pakistan.

    Today Todd helps lead the International Mission Board, equipping and sending missionaries to tell the story of Jesus’ love all over the world, including places where Christians face persecution.

    Listen to hear Todd tell about arriving in Pakistan, fighting through the culture shock and temptation to pack up and return to familiar surroundings. He will also equip you to pray, especially for newer missionaries going through some of those same challenges today.

    Finally, Todd will share the story of an Islamist Pakistani assassin who became a believer in Christ and then a bold evangelist, in spite of threats and danger.

    Please share this episode with your Christian friends; especially those considering a call to missions or Christian service.

    Never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast.

    24 MIN