China: Great Suffering During100 years of Chinese Communist Party

Just a few days before government-mandated “celebrations” of the 100th Anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party, we finish a conversation with Bob Fu, former prisoner for Christ and the founder of China Aid Association. Bob points out the terrible cost of decades of control in China by a philosophy that places zero value on human life. Bob will talk about the choice some Chinese Christians are making to stay in their country in spite of the constant threat of persecution. He’ll also tell how some Christians are choosing to leave, seeing no future under President Xi Jinping. China’s pressure and persecution efforts also reach outside their borders—including harassing Bob and his family in the United States. Bob will help us pray for Christians in China; he also says Chinese Christians are praying right now for the United States and believers here. Bob Fu is the author of two books: God’s Double Agent, which tells the story of Bob’s coming to faith in China and eventually being forced to flee the country; and The Politics of Inclusive Pluralism: A Proposed Foundation for Religious Freedom in a Post-Communist, Democratic China.

China-worst persecution in 40 Years

Bob Fu is a former prisoner for Christ and the founder of China Aid Association, serving and sharing the stories of persecuted Christians in China. He says persecution of Christians in communist China is the worst it has been in 40 years—since the days of the Cultural Revolution. Bob will share a recent case of persecution and the story of how our brother Chen Wensheng—a former mafia leader—thought of ten days in prison as a “spiritual retreat.” Brother Chen went right back to publicly witnessing for Christ the moment he was released. Pastor Bob says Chinese Christians understand they are in a spiritual battle, rather than a physical one. Listen to hear how they gain strength to face opposition and persecution, and how the church prepares believers—even youth—to stand strong.

Pakistan : Persecution is Like The Air

Paul wrote to the Corinthian church that, “a wide door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many adversaries” (I Cor. 16:9). “Brother Aaron” says Paul’s ministry description could have been written about Christians in the restricted nation of Pakistan in 2021. Listen as Aaron shares how Christian persecution is “like the air” in Pakistan—something that’s always present and almost taken for granted by people there. He’ll also explain how the church prepares believers—especially young people—to be strong in their faith and ready to withstand societal pressure and persecution. Aaron will also talk about the types of persecution faced by former Muslims who leave Islam behind to follow Christ. Finally, he’ll equip listeners with specific ways to pray for Pakistan and the church there.

Decades Serving China's Church

“Uncle Monnie” has worked alongside Chinese Christians for decades. He says the pressure and persecution Christians face there today is even worse than during the Cultural Revolution. Listen as Monnie shares about the changes he’s seen in China and the response of believers he’s trained to face persecution and continue to advance the gospel. Some of those Monnie helped train now serve Jesus in restricted Muslim nations in the Middle East and around the world. Learn how you can pray for Chinese Christians, and how persecution is teaching Christians from different backgrounds to work and minister side-by-side. Finally, Monnie will provide an update on current events in Myanmar.

Iran: "God Always Advances His Kingdom Through Trouble"

Tune in this week for the second half of our conversation with Pastor Tat Stewart, who lived and ministered in Tehran as the Islamic Revolution swept through Iran. Listen to how he was encouraged by his final conversation on Iranian soil before he and his family were expelled from the country. You’ll also hear how God showed him he could have a more far-reaching ministry to Iranians outside the country than he could ever have living inside the Islamic Republic. “I could not stay away from what God was doing with Iranians,” he says. Tat also shares how hungry the Iranian people were for the gospel—even teenagers craved deep teaching and were willing to invest long stretches of time in Bible study and prayer. Tat continues to minister to Iranian Christians through Talim Ministries, including publishing and mentoring Iranian pastors.

IRAN-on the Ground in Tehran During the Islamic Revolution

“Let’s drive by the American Embassy and see what’s going on…” It was November 4, 1979 when Tat Stewart said those words to his wife as they drove home from church in Tehran, Iran. Iranian students had overrun the US Embassy that day. They would go on to hold 52 embassy staff members and others hostage for 444 days. Stewart, his wife and their children moved to Tehran earlier that year, just months after Ayatollah Khomeini arrived back in Iran and the Islamic Revolution took control of the country. Tat went to serve as the pastor of a church for expatriate Christians. But his experiences in Iran began many years earlier, when his parents moved there to serve as medical missionaries. Listen as Tat shares how he continued to minister as the Islamic revolution went on all around him, how he became a contact person for American citizens needing help amidst the chaos and how God protected and provided through that dangerous season—and ultimately led them to leave Iran. Tat Stewart continues to serve and train Iranian church leaders today through Talim Ministries.

India-When The Word of God Came, Things changed

“Brother Bennie” is back to talk about persecution of Christians in India, including the story of three close friends recently arrested for their evangelistic work. Hear how God worked during their time in prison—especially once they received a copy of the Bible. Bennie will talk about recent passage of anti-conversion laws in several Indian states, and how Christians and churches are affected by such laws. He says the India of today is dramatically different from the India he knew as a child, and even from how the nation was five or ten years ago. In addition to praying for India during the current coronavirus surge, Bennie will give listeners specific ways to pray for imprisoned Christians there, and for the nation as a whole.

Missions-My Calling Will Not Be Cancelled

When Susi Childers met a woman who’d had three children killed in an attack in Northern Nigeria, God used the pain of three miscarriages in Susi’s life to open the door for a powerful time of connection and ministry. Listen as Susi shares the story, and offers encouragement to Christians wrestling with suffering, loss or even persecution right now. Paul and Susi Childers have spent more than two decades working to spread the gospel through Youth With a Mission (YWAM). They will give advice about blending the responsibilities of marriage and family with the missionary calling God has placed on their lives to serve Him—including very practical things that they do in their home and with their children. Listen to the first half of our conversation with Paul and Susi from last week, and previous VOM Radio conversations with Paul Childers.

Missions-The next step is never too difficult

Listen as Susi shares how God called her from a career in photography to go as a missionary—and how He turned her camera into a bridge-building tool for sharing the gospel. “Don’t think because you don’t have a typical ‘Christian’ job that you can’t be used [in missions],” she says. Susi started out by committing to serve for one year, a commitment that has now been renewed for 24 years! She will offer advice if you sense God may be asking you to get involved in spreading the gospel to the world. Paul and Susi will also tell us how they think about risk—for themselves and for each other—and how they involve their children in sending and praying as they answer God’s call to go into all the world. Hear previous VOM Radio conversations with Paul Childers.

Missions-Hold on to God's call

“Brother Jeff” served as a long-time gospel worker in South Asia and Indonesia—places with intense Christian persecution. Today he helps lead Assemblies of God World Missions (AGWM). Listen as he shares about the time he was arrested for his work, how God worked to set him free and how his arrest actually opened a doorway to more (and more secure) ministry opportunities. He’ll also talk about the challenges he and his wife experienced in their early years of missionary service, and how God’s clear call on their lives became an anchor they could hold on to in difficult seasons. His stories will help you know how to pray for missionaries currently in the field. Jeff will also offer advice to listeners sensing a call to serve God cross-culturally, including the need for a sense of adventure: “In 23 years [of overseas ministry],” he says, “the greatest things we did were not planned.”

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