MIDDLE EAST: Take Courage; Wait For the Lord
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  • CHINA: New Wave of Testing for Persecuted Christians

    The nation of China has been on the front pages of newspapers and the top of newscasts in recent weeks with widespread protests and a significant shift in the “zero covid” policy. But how will these developments—and the recent elevation of President Xi Jinping to what is essentially a permanent presidency—mean for our Christian brothers and sisters?

    Bob Fu, founder, and president of China Aid, will explain how Chinese Christians are affected by these things, and how they are responding. In Xi’s first 10 years in power, religious freedom has been under constant assault—including within China’s state-sanctioned, registered churches. Christians in China know there will be more persecution in the years to come. Our Christian family in China, both young and old, face the decision to either renounce faith in Jesus or have their future taken away from them. How are they preparing themselves, and especially young believers, to withstand that persecution?

    Listen for the story of one Chinese Christian woman in prison who said, “I only began loving the Lord when you arrested me.”

    Bob will also give listeners an update on two pastors in jail, Pastors Wang Yi and John Cao, and how they are continuing to serve the Lord and grow in faith—even through their incarceration. Pray for rulers and authorities in China, imprisoned believers, the millions of people in China, and for God’s Word to be available to those in this restricted nation. You can write letters of encouragement to brothers and sisters imprisoned for their faith.

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    24 MIN
  • PERSECUTION IN AFRICA: Power In Christian Worship

    If there was no spiritual power when believers gather together to worship Christ, then Christians in hostile and restricted nations wouldn’t be attacked. If their worship wasn’t a threat, why would enemies of the gospel try to prevent it?

    Jeremy Malkin, who oversees VOM’s international ministry work in west and central Africa, explains that animistic and Muslim communities’ sense that power of Christians gathering together, and they often respond with violence and persecution towards our brothers and sisters in Christ.

    Jeremy will share the story of one of our brothers in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Matendo, who was abducted by an armed group of Muslims targeting Christians. He was beaten and threatened for his witness, causing long-term damage to his body, yet he is praising God for miraculously sparing his life.

    As Christian persecution increases across Africa, there is great need for prayer and support for brothers and sisters who are being driven from their homes and seeing their churches destroyed. On one trip, Jeremy and his team met 300 believers at a church, all wanting to share their story. When Jeremy asked how many had family members who’d been killed by the Islamist rebels, almost everyone in the room raised their hands.

    Listen to hear an update on Christians in Niger, Nigeria, Togo, Burkina Faso, Benin and other African nations, and learn how you can be in prayer for the persecuted church there. Subscribe to VOM’s free magazine to read more about Matendo’s story in the January issue, as well as recieve the 2023 VOM Prayer Map. Listen to Brother Malik’s episode on VOM Radio to hear more about this Fulani Christian’s testimony.

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    38 MIN
  • CAMBODIA: From Killing Fields To Harvest Fields

    Under the brutal control of the Khmer Rouge, Cambodia became known for the killing fields where more than a million people were executed. But today, the country is a field ripe for gospel harvest!

    Garth and Caroline Gustafson, who lead the work of Youth With a Mission (YWAM) in Cambodia, see seeds being planted and gospel workers sent out to impact generations to come. From the mid 1960s to early 2000s, Cambodia experienced war and political turmoil, the legacy of which still impacts its people. But God is changing a country that was known for killing to be known for His life-giving power, and now for training and sending out workers to restricted nations all over southeast Asia—nations where Christian persecution is common.

    Garth and Caroline serve in a YWAM training center in Cambodia focused on training local leaders to serve in their own country and into surrounding nations. Listen to hear about their work, and about how God is opening doors to impact people around them—even Buddhist monks.

    Garth and Caroline will also describe how God led them to serve full time with YWAM and how they train gospel workers who may face persecution for their witness. Garth tells the story of a close friend’s time in jail for his Christian faith—and the surprising reason for his release!

    They will help listeners pray for Cambodia and describe how it boosts their faith to hear the stories of persecuted Christians and their faithfulness to Jesus.

    You can connect with Garth and Caroline and with YWAM online.

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    36 MIN
  • Changing Nations Through Our Prayers

    What might God do if you made the commitment to pray every day for a specific country? What doors might He open to connect with the people and even walk in the land?

    Two decades ago, Peter Smith and his wife were challenged to “adopt a country” and specifically pray every day for God’s Spirit to move in that place. The country God laid on their hearts was the Islamic Republic of Iran, a place where Christian persecution is common and missionaries are banned.

    Listen to learn how Peter and his wife began to pray; hear how God opened the door for him to visit Iran, “to go on site to gain God’s insights” about the Iranian people and ways to pray for them. He will also share how his whole family has made a conscious effort to reach out to Persian people living in the United States—and found amazing openness to the gospel. Just as Jesus had compassion on the multitudes, we can ask God for that same heart of compassion towards those around us.

    As you listen to VOM Radio this week, you’ll be challenged to make the same decision Peter and his family made all those years ago: adopt a country and consistently pray for the people there and specifically for God to work in that nation. Who knows the doors God will open in your life to minister to the people you’re praying for?

    If you’ve taken up the challenge to pray for a specific nation in 2023, please let us know!

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    24 MIN
  • MISSIONS LEADERSHIP: Sending Gospel Workers Into Danger

    Lawrence Tong wakes up each morning excited to pursue this goal: vibrant communities of Jesus followers among the least reached. As the International Director for Operation Mobilization, he oversees the ministry of 5000 gospel workers—including many serving in places where Christians face intense persecution.

    Lawrence’s first taste of missions—and of the work of OM—came aboard a ship, docking at different ports to share the gospel and train up local Christians. Witnessing a spiritual fire among the young people on the boat, Lawrence committed two years to serving with OM. That commitment has now grown into more than 40 years of gospel work amongst the least reached!

    Listen as Lawrence shares about his six years of ministry work in China, and an update on the current challenges faced by persecuted Christians there.

    God is still calling people to go to dangerous places to share about Jesus. If you feel called to global gospel work, Lawrence will offer advice about how to think about, pray about and prepare for that calling. He’ll also equip listeners to pray for the persecuted church in Afghanistan, Nepal, and China to stay firm in faith, and help us pray for the work of OM around the world.

    To hear more about the history and work of Operation Mobilization, listen to previous VOM Radio conversations with founders George Verwer and Dale Rhoton, and also with OM-USA President Andrew Scott.

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    24 MIN
  • FULANI CHRISTIAN: Preaching Christ in Africa

    Malik knew the missionary was a kind man. He felt badly that this kind man was going to hell. Malik, a member of the Fulani tribe and the son of a Quranic scholar, decided he would convince the Christian missionary to become a Muslim, so that he could go to paradise.

    The missionary refused to convert and told Malik that there were mistakes in the Quran. Malik set out to prove him wrong. He began to carefully study and compare the Bible with the Quran. He never did convince the missionary to accept Islam. Instead, Malik read through the Bible ten times, found truth in Jesus Christ and made the decision to follow Him.

    It was not a decision his Fulani family would easily accept. Family members told Malik he had shamed the family, and that if he didn’t return to Islam within three days they had the right to kill him. Malik says he was ready to die rather than renounce his new faith. Thankfully his life was spared.

    Listen as Malik shares his amazing testimony—and talks about his work now with Spirit of Martyrdom training pastors and evangelists to work in many parts of Africa, reaching more Muslims for Christ and sending out more gospel workers. Part of that training is preparing new Christians to stand up under persecution. Malik will also share specific ways to pray for God’s work among the Fulani people in Nigeria and other nations of west Africa.

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    25 MIN
  • SOUTH ASIA: Obedience Over Comfort

    210 million people in Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, and the Maldives have yet to hear who Jesus is. Almost all the major world religions—including Buddhism, Hinduism, and Islam—compete for the hearts and minds of people in these countries. Christian persecution is a regular part of following Christ. Pastors have been martyred for their faith, believers beaten and imprisoned, missionaries expelled, and churches burned or bombed.

    Tim and Dawn are gospel workers in the region, helping guide gospel efforts and workers. Listen as they unpack what it looks like to follow Christ in South Asia—and how we can pray for gospel advance in the region.

    Listen to hear how Christians in Sri Lanka responded to the Easter Sunday church bombings in 2019, and how recent political turmoil in that country has affected their work. They will also equip listeners to pray for persecuted Christians in other nations of South Asia.

    What has God put on your heart to do? Has he stirred up your heart for missions work in another country? Tim and Dawn say there’s a reason the Lord placed a particular people group or place on your heart. They will share practical next steps to explore God’s leading into missions. You can see opportunities to serve in their region at the Southern Asia Access web site.

    On the first Sunday in November, churches around the world will mark The International Day of Prayer for Persecuted Christians. You can join in prayer with your family, friends and church. Learn specific ways to pray by downloading free resources here, including a video telling Rebecca’s inspiring story from Nigeria.

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    24 MIN
  • SOUTH ASIA: Never Heard the Name of Jesus

    Only 1.4% of people in Nepal are Christians. Hundreds of thousands of Nepali people live their entire lifetime without ever meeting anyone who follows Jesus. Hundreds of thousands of people in Sri Lanka (1.4% Christian), Bangladesh (0.4%), Bhutan (0.3%) and the Maldives (0.03%) also live and die without ever hearing the gospel message—or even the name of Jesus.

    God broke the hearts of Tim and Dawn for the lost people of South Asia—and called them to go and live in the region as ambassadors for Christ. Listen as they share their backgrounds, how that call came and some of the challenges of adjusting to life and raising a family in South Asia.

    Tim and Dawn will also share how they witness for Christ in the context of hostile and restricted nations where Christians are persecuted by speaking Biblical truth into peoples’ lives. Just as Jesus used parables to communicate spiritual truth, Tim and Dawn often share simple stories from the Bible, then invite their listeners to respond to the message of the story. Listen for the story of a Buddhist man responding to the story of Moses and the golden calf.

    The tools Tim and Dawn are using to spread the gospel—hospitality, conversation, simple Bible stories—are available to listeners in free nations, too. Who in your life could you share Biblical truth with this week?

    Pray for Tim and Dawn and their fellow gospel workers in South Asia.

    Don’t forget to access resources from The Voice of the Martyrs for the upcoming International Day of Prayer for Persecuted Christians. And never miss an episode of VOM Radio! Subscribe to the podcast.

    25 MIN
  • Changed by Fellowship with Persecuted Christians

    The anxious mother in India had tried everything. Her son was very sick. It seemed he would soon die. She’d been to the Hindu temples and made offerings to many Hindu gods. Nothing had worked. Her son only became sicker. Then, a traveling salesman suggested that she pray to Jesus. She did—and her son was healed! Amazed and awe-struck, the mother and son hunted down the salesman to find out more about this Jesus who answers prayers. Today, her son is a pastor and evangelist who’s traveled more than 40,000 miles sharing the gospel. God is at work in hostile and restricted nations!

    That’s just one of the stories you’ll hear this week from David Witt, CEO of Spirit of Martyrdom and a former staff member at The Voice of the Martyrs. David will also share stories from his encounters with Richard and Sabina Wurmbrand, VOM’s founders, and the “holy experience” of visiting one of the prison cells where Richard was held in Communist Romania.

    David will also tell how he became aware of and involved in ministry to persecuted Christians, and how God used the attacks of 9-11 to draw the attention of American Christians to radical Islam and the scriptural call to love our enemies.

    Today, the ministry David leads is training up church planters and leaders in multiple countries—with an eye on training that’s easily reproducible to other potential leaders. Listen as he shares how those being trained immediately put their learning into action, and how we can pray for these frontline gospel workers.

    The International Day of Prayer for Persecuted Christians is coming soon. CLICK HERE to access resources—including a video about a persecuted Christian in Nigeria—to help your church, small group and family pray for persecuted Christians on this important day.

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    25 MIN
  • UZBEKISTAN: Prayer Emboldens Persecuted Christians

    Last week, Brother Max shared his testimony of seeking God through following Islam then, when he met Jesus, finding a peace he’d never experienced before. After finding that peace, Max wanted to tell everyone he knew, but he was not prepared for how his community would react with anger and persecution.

    Max found it very natural to talk about Jesus with people who had known him before his salvation. They could see his life was drastically different, and they wanted an explanation. Brother Max was eager to share God’s Word with those who asked. He told them he’d found the ‘passport to heaven.’ But leaving Islam is not permitted, and his family and community persecuted him for his faith in Christ.

    His father could see how Max’s life had changed for the better—but still urged him to return to Islam. Max explained, “If I take Jesus from my heart, I will become the old Max again.” He challenged his father to read the New Testament.

    Persecuted first by those he knew, Max and his witness for Christ soon drew the attention of the government. He was arrested and interrogated by several police. It was a frightening experience; his legs shook with fear as the police questioned him and forced him to write a “confession” that would be used against him, dictating the words he was supposed to write.

    Christians gathered outside the police station, praying for Max during the interrogation. The presence and prayers of his Christian brothers and sisters encouraged Max, and a holy boldness came over him. He turned the table on the police, asking them questions instead of answering theirs.

    Listen as Brother Max shares how the Lord worked through that situation and later brought Max face to face with the one who prosecuted him—now a follower of Christ! He’ll also share about training new believers in Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan and Azerbaijan to withstand Christian persecution after they leave Islam to follow Jesus. “Our time is short,” he says, “so we should be ready to meet Jesus.”

    Max will also equip listeners to pray for Christians in the region—including those facing persecution. Listen to the first part of Max’s story here, and learn more about Max’s ministry, Global Teams, here.

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    25 MIN
  • UZBEKISTAN: Adopted Into a New Family

    As a boy in Uzbekistan, Brother Max couldn’t imagine a God that cared about his life or had a plan for him. His biological parents didn’t want him. In his Islamic culture, he felt shame because he was adopted. He was consumed with the idea of getting revenge against his birth parents, who had abandoned him. Every day was dark. He felt hopeless and prayed every night that he would not wake up the next morning.

    When the Soviet Union collapsed, radical Muslim missionaries entered Uzbekistan to encourage young people raised under communism to pursue Islam. Max began training under an imam, seeking God, and learning more about how to pray to Allah in the required way and the history of Islam. But those lessons, and his increasing knowledge, never brought the peace he craved. Max had many questions about Islam. Why couldn’t Allah understand his native language? Did Prophet Mohammed’s life match his teachings? But Max was told to just accept the teachings, that his questions had no answers, and he should stop asking.

    Max first learned about the God who loved him from a friend whose life had been changed. Max wrestled with this new idea. How could God love me if my biological parents didn’t? If God loves me, why didn’t he help me achieve all the goals I had for my future?

    After wrestling spiritually for several months, Max came to fully trust Christ and seek forgiveness for his sin. Instantly, he felt differently. He finally felt peace in his heart, and from that moment his life changed completely. He started sharing his testimony with people who remembered how angry Max had been before Christ, explaining that he was a new creation! He even forgave his biological mother. As a new Christian, Max wasn’t worried about Christian persecution; he simply wanted to share what Jesus had done for him.

    Today Brother Max is serving the Lord with Global Teams, where he helps train others to evangelize Muslims and plant churches in hostile and restricted nations.

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    25 MIN
  • MISSIONS: “They Can’t Kill Me Twice”

    Dr. Mike Fullingim felt the specific call to mission service while hearing a sermon from Jeremiah 5:19: “…you shall serve foreigners in a land that is not yours.” But as he looks back, he can see that even as a young boy God was drawing his heart toward missions and people different from him. Twelve years after hearing that sermon, Mike and his family went as missionaries to Papua New Guinea.

    Dr. Mike and his wife, Barbara, served eight years on the field, with a break between terms for him to pursue further linguistics education. In 1987, Dr. Mike was finishing his PhD in linguistics and anthropology. After completing his doctoral program, offers for teaching jobs flooded in. But his heart was still in PNG. As he sought God’s will, and considered his children’s educational needs, Dr. Mike took a one-year teaching job at Oklahoma Wesleyan University.

    As he wrestled with what direction God was leading, Dr. Mike read a quote from Dwight L. Moody: “It’s better to train ten people than to do the work of ten people.”

    Today, 35 years after signing that “one-year contract,” Dr. Mike is still training future missionaries at Oklahoma Wesleyan University. His former students—more than 200—are serving today as gospel workers around the world—including hostile and restricted nations where Christians are persecuted. One of his passions is helping students develop tools to learn language—a key factor in long-term fruitful service on the mission field.

    Listen as Dr. Mike shares about his missionary calling, how he wrestled with the painful decision not to return to PNG, and how we can pray for missionaries currently serving around the world—and for God to call forth more workers to go into ripe harvest fields, even in dangerous places.

    Read more about Dr. Mike Fullingim’s mission work and legacy of teaching at Oklahoma Wesleyan University here.

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    35 MIN
  • MIDDLE EAST: “Forgiveness is a Decision”

    It’s a Bible verse all of us have quoted, one we’ve likely shared with a Christian friend in the midst of a difficult season: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” – Romans 8:28

    After her husband Rami, a leader of the Bible Society in Gaza, was murdered, Pauline Ayyad wrestled deeply with this verse. What good would come of her husband being killed? What good could come from raising her two children—and the one about to be born—without their father? Pauline asked God why He even allowed her to marry Rami if he was chosen to die a martyr’s death?

    When Rami decided to leave a good, safe job at a bank, Pauline questioned the decision. The couple went into ministry serving kids through Awana, and Rami at the Bible Society, in 2005. Rami had peace about the transition, and eventually Pauline also felt at peace. They settled into what became normal life. Rami faced repeated threats, but refused to be afraid.

    “What can they do?” he asked. “The only thing they can do is kill me, and then it would be for Christ.”

    Then one day Rami didn’t arrive home from work. The next morning, Pauline learned that her husband’s body had been found. Pauline struggled and questioned God. She did not want to forgive Rami’s killer. She wanted the murderer to pay for his crime.

    Listen as Pauline shares how the Holy Spirit was at work, and the five-year journey that brought her to forgive her husband’s killer. She didn’t only quietly forgive in her heart, but posted a message of forgiveness on Facebook. That post has blessed many Christians and challenged many Muslims as it’s been read thousands of times—an incredible witness for the gospel and the power of God’s grace in the face of Christian persecution.

    Pauline will also share specific prayer requests for her family and for the church in Israel, including Gaza and the West Bank.

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    24 MIN
  • MIDDLE EAST: Prayer Softens the Ground

    People all over the world are searching for the truth. Longing for desires and needs to be fulfilled–not by food or entertainment but in a deeper, more lasting way. Brother Dan and Brother Hayel share God’s Word with Druze people, posting short videos on social media. They don’t know who is going to receive the gospel—or who is going to oppose their work—but they know that some will.

    Last week Dan and Hayel shared about the hostility of the Druze community to Christians and the persecution Hayel has faced personally as a Druze-background believer in Christ. The high cost of following and proclaiming Christ is known to all who grow up in a Druze community. Many Druze are watching videos shared through Dan and Hayel’s social media ministry, but they fear what may happen if community leaders or even their families were to find out. Brother Dan shares one story about how he found out how closely people are watching their posts—both those interested and those opposed to their work—within five minutes of one post going live!

    The spiritual battle in the Middle East continues. Druze voiceover actors involved in the gospel videos are threatened by community leaders. Despite push back and threats, God provides, and the video production is ongoing. And many Druze are watching, often in secret, seeking answers. They ask questions, opening the door for Hayel to further witness, disciple and encourage seekers across Syria, Lebanon, Israel, and Jordan.

    As Druze people find Christ, it is often almost impossible for them to meet with other believers for worship and teaching. Pray with Dan and Hayel that Jesus will build His church among the Druze. Pray for walls to fall as the gospel saturates the hearts of many Druze, and that they will know Christ and make Him known. For specific prayer updates, please register at Pray4Druze.com and join with others committed to pray regularly for Christ’s work among the Druze.

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    24 MIN
  • MIDDLE EAST: Going The Right Direction

    “If you read the Bible, He can change you and God will be with you.”

    Brother Hayel learned that truth first-hand when he started reading the Bible. In its pages he knew he’d found the One True God. He couldn’t stop reading God’s Word, and hungrily opened it each day. Having found truth, Hayel couldn’t keep himself from sharing the good news with his fellow Druze—even knowing he would be persecuted for doing so.

    Hayel desires to see his people, the Druze, changed by the gospel. This people group includes about 1.5 million individuals across Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria; they are distinct ethnically and religiously from the Muslims and others around them. Druze who choose to become Christians face intense persecution. Hayel was forbidden to share his Christian faith, but he refused to stop. He was kicked out from his home and ostracized, but he regards that sacrifice as nothing compared to knowing Jesus.

    Today, Hayel is working with Brother Dan to share the gospel with Druze. Dan never planned on living in the Middle East. He was a businessman serving on his local church missions committee when God put Syria on his mind, even though he admits that deep down in his heart he had hatred for Arabs and Muslims. Yet he chose obedience and ended up on a missions trip to Syria before the war there. Through that experience and the people he met, God scrubbed Dan’s heart clean of hatred and gave him a passion to see people in the region reached for Christ—a passion so strong he and his wife moved to the region.

    Today, Hayel and Dan serve Druze people through social media ministry. They speak to the Druze in their homes and their heart language with the gospel—through their phones. Listen as they share more about how God brought them together, how their hearts were transformed, and what their ministry to the Druze looks like. Join in prayer for God to open the hearts of the Druze people to receive the message of the gospel!

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    25 MIN
  • MISSIONS: In Difficult Times, God Is Merciful

    Cade Jefferson was called to missions as a young adult. Soon after college, he went to one of the most restricted countries in the world: Afghanistan. Despite difficult images he still carries from that war-torn nation, etched in Cade’s heart are memories of fellowship with believers who welcomed Cade and his wife with warm hospitality.

    After leaving Afghanistan, Cade went to North Africa to serve the Lord, service that turned out to be more difficult than he expected. Cade says he was at a very difficult point, mentally and emotionally, when God was merciful to open doors for him to serve with The Voice of the Martyrs. Sean Paton, who was part of opening those doors, had been a pastor at the church that first sent Cade to the mission field many years before. Today, Cade has stepped into a leadership role overseeing VOM’s work serving persecuted Christians in North and East Africa.

    Listen to hear the story of a young teenager in North Africa, Nathan, who exemplifies what often happens when a person there chooses to follow Christ. In North African culture, everything is tied to family. Family connections provide home, education opportunities, career openings and even daily needs like food. When a Moroccan, Libyan, Tunisian, or Algerian person accepts Christ, that new Christian is cut off from those privileges. Yet brothers and sisters like Nathan persevere, in spite of persecution, because Jesus is everything to them.

    Cade will also equip listeners to pray. Pray for gospel workers who live in North and East Africa to trust in the Lord to provide for the overwhelming needs of our brothers and sisters. Ask God to encourage and uplift their spiritual health, so they may flourish. Pray they will continue to reach out with the love of Christ to Muslims in their communities, in spite of difficulties.

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    25 MIN
  • MIDDLE EAST: Training Believers to Reach Their Own People

    Muslims in the Middle East are hungry for the gospel! Jerry and Stacy, founders of Love for the Least, say they sometimes repeat the gospel message even after the person they’re witnessing to says they’re ready to accept Christ—just to be sure they understand the decision and the risk of persecution they face.

    Last week, in the first part of our conversation with Jerry and Stacy, they shared how God drew them out of the American suburbs to minister in Africa, then called them to Iraq just as the ISIS caliphate was born. This week we’ll hear stories of how God is changing lives in Iraq, Iran, Syria and among Kurds throughout the region.

    Jerry and Stacy are working to see healthy house churches multiplying along what they call “The Highway of Holiness,” where 35 million Muslims are still unreached by the gospel. Training local believers is 90% of their effort, using simple tools and practical, easy-to-learn ways to study the Bible and share God’s love.

    What powers disciple-making movements, they say, is prayer and fasting. Listen as Jerry and Stacy share amazing ways God’s truth has spread from one individual to larger groups of believers and how He is using miracles to show His power and grow His church. You’ll also hear about a sister in Christ who has become known as “The Magic Prayer” in the prison where she is incarcerated for her ministry work—because other prisoners have seen that her prayers actually get answered.

    Jerry and Stacy will also equip you to pray for persecuted Christians, gospel workers and believers throughout the Middle East.

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    24 MIN
  • IRAQ: The Love of Christ Was All I Had

    “Jesus is here already; He’s just waiting for us.”

    In 2014, just as ISIS was declaring an Islamic caliphate in Iraq and Syria, God called Jerry and Stacy to go to Iraq. “It was a clear word from the Lord,” Stacy says. Others—including their mission board—told them NOT to go, that it wasn’t safe or smart. But they obeyed God, landing in northern Iraq days later.

    Years before, they’d answered God’s call to Tanzania—leaving behind an “American Dream” life to serve in east Africa, where they saw the overwhelming need of the people and learned how to focus on serving the person in front of them. The hospitality of the African people, despite their overwhelming needs, and the sweet sound of Swahili hymns struck a chord in the hearts of Jerry and Stacy.

    Jerry and Stacy will challenge listeners to serve the Lord, not with busy work but with lives committed to prayer and fasting, seeking the Lord and His plan and will for each situation. Stacy, who had never read her Bible or finished a Bible study before moving to East Africa, reminds us that God qualifies those He calls. The couple saw God open doors for impactful ministry in Africa, and so they went to Iraq with complete trust in what He was going to do.

    Founders of Love for the Least, Jerry and Stacy help refugees in Iraq and serve them through providing education and job training. They provide trauma care for girls sold into ISIS slavery, young widows and children who have witnessed the dark side of Islam. To see a documentary about their work in Iraq, watch “Don’t Forget Them” on Amazon.

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    25 MIN
  • ISRAEL: “My Faith in Christ Fulfills My Jewish Identity”

    William Cameron Townsend said, "The greatest missionary is the Bible in the mother tongue. It needs no furlough and is never considered a foreigner." But what if the “mother tongue” is no longer easily understood? That can often be the case with the Bible in Israel.

    Listen as Brother Victor, the director of Israel Bible Society shares what God has done through their organization’s effort to spread God’s Word. It can still be difficult to find complete Hebrew Bibles in Israel. And the majority of the population in Israel cannot easily understand the original Hebrew text, which is now 2700 years old. That’s why the Israel Bible Society has created resources to help Hebrew speakers understand the original text with explanations in today’s Hebrew language.

    Sharing about Jesus or the Christian faith is often received negatively by Jews in Israel. Many think becoming a Christian means losing or even betraying their Jewish identity. But as more people in Israel choose to follow Christ, more Jews are acquainted with their own people who have believed in Christ as Messiah while keeping their Jewish roots.

    Bible work in Israel is not without opposition, and Victor will share stories of challenges he and the Bible Society have faced. He will also encourage us to pray for God’s Word to go forth in Israel and for God to open hearts to the gospel and increase a hunger for His Word across the Holy Land.

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    25 MIN
  • AFRICA: “The Church is the Pillar of Truth”

    Sean Paton enrolled in university to study pastoral ministry. But on the first day of his first class, the professor challenged students to think more broadly, to consider if God was calling them to take His love to people who hadn’t yet heard the name of Christ. Sean left class that day and changed his major to missions—and ever since he’s seen and lived a direct link between pastoral and missionary work.

    In recent years Sean has led VOM’s work serving Christians on the continent of Africa. Now he’s transitioning back into a pastoral role with an American congregation. Listen as he shares some of the stories he’ll take with him—like the story of meeting the wife and children of a long-imprisoned Eritrean pastor and being inspired by their faithfulness. Sean will tell how persecuted Christians like these impacted his own faith and understanding of the gospel.

    He will also encourage listeners to pray—with specific ideas on how to pray for VOM’s international staff that travel extensively and deal often with suffering and pain. Sean encourages pastors to incorporate our persecuted brothers and sister’s stories within their church services, such as during communion or prayer time, as weekly reminders that we are one body in Christ.

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    35 MIN