Surrounded By Isis: Imprisoned for Christ in Sudan

Petr Jasek was imprisoned 445 days in Sudan. He traveled to the country on behalf of The Voice of the Martyrs to meet with and encourage Sudanese Christians. His first cellmates were arrested ISIS fighters—men who hated Christians and quickly began to persecute Petr. In his lowest moments, God brought to mind names and faces of other persecuted Christians—men and women Petr had met personally during his years serving with VOM. He began to pray for other persecuted believers, and his spirit lifted as his focus changed from his own difficulties to his prayers for other Christians. Listen as Petr shares how God prepared him to face persecution, how he had prepared his own family for his arrest, and how he prays for Christians after his experience of long months in prison and facing a death sentence for his gospel work.

Imprisoned for Christ: Former Prisoners Brunson, Baumann speak

Dan Baumann and Pastor Andrew Brunson were arrested in Muslim nations because of their Christian faith. They both experienced depression and even thoughts of suicide in prison, yet testify that God was faithful even in those desperate moments. Listen as they share the challenges of prison and their thoughts on loving our enemies and how much they don’t miss being in prison. One of the things that helped Brunson during his time in prison was something Baumann had written in one of his books. He’ll share that story—and then hear how Dan responds to the idea that God used something he’d written to sustain and bless a fellow Christian during a season of suffering.

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.

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!

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.

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.

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).

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?

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.

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).

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