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).

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.

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.

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.

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.

Iran:

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.

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.

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.

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