Before he escaped across the Yalu River into China, Park Chin-Mae was a border guard, tasked with keeping North Korea’s citizens locked inside their own country and keeping contraband — especially Bibles — out of the country.
“They know the Bible is the enemy,” Chin-Mae said of his fellow border guards.
But once he fled to South Korea, Chin-Mae began attending Christian services at a resettlement center. He was tasked with laying out Bibles before the service began. As he did so, he realized he was safely holding in his hands the same book that could have gotten him killed on the other side of the border.
He started to read the Bible and soon found himself drawn to follow the Christ he had encountered in its pages. “I didn’t just read it like any other book; I read it and I took every word of the Bible into my heart,” he said.
Chin-Mae is safely out of North Korea, but many followers of Christ are still trapped and suffering inside the secretive nation. And it’s not only North Korea where our Christian brothers and sisters suffer. Believers face persecution in more than 70 other nations.
For more than 50 years, The Voice of the Martyrs has helped Christians persecuted for their witness around the world. VOM founder Richard Wurmbrand said of this work, “Our duty is to give a piece of bread to the wives and families of persecuted and jailed believers.”
That need still exists today. When Christians’ homes and churches are burned, or pastors and evangelists are beaten, imprisoned or killed, families are often left without financial support. VOM responds by helping persecuted Christians with living expenses, children’s educational needs, relocation within their nation, vocational training and other forms of assistance.
In 1921 David and Svea Flood went with their two-year-old son from Sweden to the heart of Africa, to what was then called the Belgian Congo. This missionary couple met up with the Ericksons, another young Scandinavian couple, and the four of them sought God for direction. In those days of much devotion and sacrifice, they felt led of the Lord to set out from the main mission station to take the gospel to the village of N’dolera, a remote area.
This was a huge step of faith.
There, they were rebuffed by the chief, who would not let them enter his town for fear of alienating the local gods. The two couples opted to build their own mud huts half a mile up the slope.
They prayed for a spiritual breakthrough, but there was none. Their only contact with the villagers was a young boy, who was allowed to sell them chickens and eggs twice a week.
Svea Flood—a tiny woman only four feet, eight inches tall—decided that if this was the only African she could talk to, she would try to lead the boy to Jesus. And she succeeded!
Meanwhile, malaria struck one member of the little missionary band after another. In time, the Ericksons decided they had had enough suffering and left to return to the central mission station.
David and Svea Flood remained near N’dolera to carry on alone.
Then, Svea found herself pregnant in the middle of the primitive wilderness. When the time came for her to give birth, the village chief softened enough to allow a midwife to help her. A little girl was born, whom they named Aina. The delivery was exhausting. Svea Flood was already weak from bouts of malaria so the birthing process was a heavy blow to her stamina. She died only 17 days after Aina was born.
Something snapped Inside David Flood at that moment. He dug a crude grave, buried his 27-year-old wife, and then went back down the mountain with his children to the mission station.
Giving baby Aina to the Ericksons, he snarled, “I’m going back to Sweden. I’ve lost my wife, and I obviously can’t take care of this baby. God has ruined my life!”
With that, he headed for the port, rejecting not only his calling, but God Himself.
Within eight months, both the Ericksons were stricken with a mysterious malady and died within days of each other. Baby Aina was then turned over to another American missionary family who changed her Swedish name to “Aggie”. Eventually they took her back to the United States at age three.
This family loved Aggie. Afraid that if they tried to return to Africa some legal obstacle might separate her from them, they decided to stay in their home country and switch from missionary work to pastoral ministry. That is how Aggie grew up in South Dakota.
As a young woman, she attended North Central Bible College in Minneapolis. There she met and married Dewey Hurst.
Years passed. The Hursts enjoyed a fruitful ministry. Aggie gave birth first to a daughter, then a son. In time, her husband became president of a Christian college in the Seattle area, and Aggie was intrigued to find so much Scandinavian heritage there.
One day she found a Swedish religious magazine in their mailbox. She had no idea who had sent it, and of course she couldn’t read the words, but as she turned the pages, a photo suddenly stopped her cold.
There, in a primitive setting, was a grave with a white cross—and on the cross were the words SVEA FLOOD.
Aggie got in her car and drove straight to a college faculty member whom she knew could translate the article.
“What does this article say?”
The teacher shared a summary of the story.
“It is about missionaries who went to N’dolera, Africa, long ago. A baby was born. The young mother died. One little African boy was led to Jesus before that. After the whites had all left, the boy all grown up finally persuaded the chief to let him build a school in the village. He gradually won all his students to Christ and the children led their parents to Him. Even the chief became a follower of Jesus! Today there are six hundred believers in that village, all because of the sacrifice of David and Svea Flood.”
Aggie was elated!
For the Hursts’ 25th wedding anniversary, the college presented them with the gift of a vacation to Sweden.
Aggie sought out her birth father.
David Flood was an old man now. He had remarried, fathered four more children, and generally dissipated his life with alcohol. He had recently suffered a stroke. Still bitter, he had one rule in his family: “Never mention the name of God! God took everything from me!”
After an emotional reunion with her half-brothers and half-sister, Aggie brought up the subject of her longing to see her father. They hesitated….
“You can talk to him, but he’s very ill now. You need to know that whenever he hears the name of God, he flies into a rage.”
Aggie walked into the squalid apartment, which had liquor bottles strewn everywhere, and slowly approached her 73-year-old father lying in a rumpled bed.
“Papa,” she said tentatively.
He turned and began to cry.
“I never meant to give you away!”
“It’s all right, Papa,” she replied, taking him gently in her arms.
“God took good care of me.”
Her father instantly stiffened and his tears stopped.
“God forgot all of us. Our lives have been like this because of Him.”
He turned his face back to the wall.
Aggie stroked his face and then continued, undaunted.
“Papa, I’ve got a marvelous story to tell you!”
“You didn’t go to Africa in vain. Mama didn’t die in vain. The little boy you won to the Lord grew up to win that whole village to Jesus! The one seed you planted in his heart kept growing and growing! Today there are 600 people serving the Lord because you were faithful to the call of God in your life!”
“Papa, Jesus loves you. He has never hated you or abandoned us.”
The old father turned back to look into his daughter’s eyes. His body relaxed.
He slowly began to talk.
And by the end of the afternoon, he had come back to the God he had resented for so many years. Over the next few days, father and daughter enjoyed warm moments together. A few weeks after Aggie and her husband returned to America, David Flood died.
And a few years later….
Aggie and her husband were attending an evangelism conference in London, England, when a report was given from Zaire (the former Belgian Congo).
The superintendent of the national church, representing some 110,000 baptized believers, spoke eloquently of the Gospel’s spread in his nation.
Aggie could not help going to ask him afterward if he had ever heard of David and Svea Flood.
“Yes, madam,” the man replied in French, his words being translated into English.
“Svea Flood led me to Jesus Christ! I was the boy who brought food to your parents before you were born. In fact, to this day, your mother’s grave and her memory are honored by all of us.”
He embraced Aggie for a long time, sobbing.
“You must come to Zaire! Your mother is the most famous and honored person in our history.”
When Aggie and her husband went to N’dolera, they were welcomed by cheering throngs of villagers. Aggie even met the man who had been hired by her father to carry her down the mountain in a hammock-cradle.
Then the pastor escorted Aggie to see her mother’s tomb with a white cross bearing her name. She knelt in the soil to pray and give thanks to God.
Later that day, in the church, the boy turned pastor read….
“I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.” John 12:24
“Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy.” Psalm 126:5.
On Tuesday 20 April 2021, Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison gave an address to Christian Leaders at the Australian Christian Churches conference on the Gold Coast. This is not the first time Mr Morrison has spoken about his faith, nor did he say anything particularly controversial, but that has not stopped a storm of news and social media coverage about the place of faith in politics.
Following is a transcript of what he had to say (after his initial greetings):
“I do want to share something with you tonight, a few things that are on my heart. I need you help… Jenny sends her best by the way, thank you for your prayers for Jen, particularly most recently. She’s amazing. I’m just thrilled the rest of the country is getting to work out what I’ve known for a very, very long time. She’s a great blessing, you know, she’s got an amazing heart, the way she’s used the opportunity God has given us for such a time as this. The way that she has been able to reach out to people and just be a blessing to them and a comfort to them. Her heart is just as big as it comes and God is using her, I think, in great ways, in political ways. I didn’t come to talk about politics tonight … the opportunities that have come her way. Leila and Danny Abdallah, I don’t know if you know Leila and Danny? They lost their three children, when they were run over at Oatlands and Jenny has forged an amazing friendship with her and that family, and the other families that are affected, and that’s an amazing faith that forgives and they’ve been a blessing to this country.
But, I do need your help. My father-in-law was an amazing Christian. There wasn’t a day that went past when Roy wasn’t in complete wonder about how God saved him. He grew up in Bondi when it was a lot tougher than it was today, and he had a bit of a rough time growing up. He was a bit of a loner and God reached him through a great church where he was and he just lived the rest of his life saying “I can’t believe how great God is” and he would just give thanks every single day. And, when I was younger – because I started going out with Jenny when I was 16 – I would sit and we’d have discussions, Roy and I. Even back then I was interested in things political and so was Roy. We would talk about government and talk about all this and he’d get veryfrustrated with me because I wouldn’t answer all the questions. And I said, “you know Roy, you know, I can’t fix the world. I can’t save the world. We both believe in someone who can”. And that’s why I’ve come here for your help tonight because what you do, and what you bring to the life of faith of our country is what it needs, in my view.
Rabbi Jonathon Sacks, you may know of him, he was the chief rabbi in a synagogue in London. If you haven’t read any of Rabbi Sacks’ work, I strongly encourage you do. He wrote a book just before he died called Morality. Now, it wasn’t about what you might think or I think, most people who are outside of faith communities would think when you say “morality“. And he said this about it, he said: “You lose your morality and you’re in danger of losing your freedom.” He said “Our rights used to be how we were protected from the state and now, it’s what we expect of it.” He said “What we once expected from family and community, now we can track this to the state and to the market.”
And he channelled someone else, famous economist Friedrich Hayek: “Freedom has never worked without deeply ingrained moral beliefs.” He was talking about community, and you can’t replace community with governments, with the market, with other institutions, you can’t. You can’t replace the family, you can’t replace marriage, you can’t replace the things that are so personal and ingrained and come out of us as individuals with systems of power or systems of capital. These are important things but they can’t replace community.
At every church people say to me, “what church do you go to?”… I say “Horizon Church, used to be known as Shirelive Church”. You know other churches, there are Baptist churches, there are Brethren churches, I’ve always been at a community church. That’s where I want to be, and a church that believes in community and creates community. And the essence of community is each individual understanding that they’re valued, that they’re unique. That they can respect one another. That they can contribute to one another.
We cannot allow what we feel entitled to be to be more important than what we’re responsible for. This is very important stuff that Rabbi Sacks is talking about, because he gets it, that the essence of morality is not what others would think it is, about sexuality and all of these issues. Of course, these things relate to it, but it’s about the dignity and value of each and every human being and the responsibilities that they have one to another. Now, you cancel out one human being and you cancel community because community is just human beings who God loves, and, and is intended to connect us one to another. Morality is about focusing not on ‘you’, but on the person next to you. It’s about focusing, for me, on you, not me. That is the essence of community. You can’t pass a law for it. You can’t create a building for it. It is essentially what springs from each and every one of us. Community. It’s born of what he likes to call a covenant and a covenant as we read, particularly in the Old Testament – he tends to read the Old Testament a bit more often than you! He seems to understand it a lot better than many…
But he speaks about this in a way, it’s not a transaction because in a covenant there are responsibilities. Not just obligations, but responsibilities. There is relationship in covenant, which is what God sought with Israel, in covenant, deep relationship, it’s personal. It goes beyond. There’s the giving of oneself the respect, the dignity, the caring together. The sharing of interests, the sharing of lives. The pledging of faithfulness and achieving together what cannot be achieved alone. A covenant, more than a transaction. Family and marriage, God has created in the same way, to reflect that covenant that we can have. And so I need you to keep building community in this country. I need you to keep doing the things that you do which allows Australians, right here, wherever you may be. Brad [Bonhomme] does amazing work up in Papua New Guinea. I know how much he loves going up there and I’m sure there are many other teams that have blessed our Pacific family. But it’s so important to continue to reach out and let each and every Australian know that they are important. That they are valued, that they are significant. Because we believe they are created in the image of God and that in understanding that, they can go on a journey that I’m very confident you can take them on. And I’m relying on you to do that because that’s not my job, that’s yours.
There are some threats to this that I want to share with you. There is a fashion these days to not think of Australians as individuals, there is particularly, I think, amongst our young people, and I worry about this. It’s called “identity politics”. People think of themselves by the things they can describe and connect them with others. These are important things. One’s ancestry. One’s gender, where one’s from. If you’re from The Shire, well, that’s great, starting ahead of everybody else. As they say, “prayer in The Shire is a local call”. It’s Cronulla for those of you not familiar with what I’m referring to. But there is a tendency for people not to see themselves and value themselves in their own right as individuals. And to see themselves only defined by some group and they get lost in that group and you know when you do that you lose your humanity. And you lose your connection, I think, one to each other and you’re defined by your group, not by, I think, I believe who God has created you to be. And to understand that. And that’s a big thing going on in our community, in our society and it’s corrosive, it’s absolutely corrosive and, I think it’s undermining community and, I think it’s undermining the self-worth that Australians can have because if you‘re only defined by what pack you’re in or what group you’re in or what group you’ve been in or what box you’re put in, how others have defined you or sought to define you either to enlist you to their cause or whatever that might be. Australians need to understand that they themselves individually and personally are unique and wonderful. Because, you know, if you look at each other not as individuals but as warring tribes, you know, it’s easy to start disrespecting each other. It’s easy to start not understanding the person across from you, and this is important for politics for us too, that there is a beating heart over there, there is a unique individual with a unique set of issues and challenges and opportunities and possibilities and all of these sorts of things. And when you stop seeing that and just see someone as, well, they’re of that view and that group.
That’s why people start writing stupid things on Facebook and the internet, being disrespectful to one another and we all know how that is corroding and desensitising our country and our society, not just here but all around the world. I think it’s an evil thing. I think it’s a very evil thing and we’ve got to pray about it, we’ve got to call it out and we’ve got to raise up our spiritual weapons against this because it’s going to take our young people. It’s going to take their courage. It’s going to take their hope. It’s going to steal their hope. We’ve got to pray about that, we’ve got to pray against that because it is such a corrosive thing that we’re seeing take place. Yeah sure, social media has its virtues and its values and enables us to connect with people in ways we’ve never had before, terrific, terrific. But those weapons can also be used by the evil one and we need to call it out.
So, this is the help I need from you. I need your help to keep doing what you’re doing. I need your help to remind Australians how precious they are and how unique they are.
Can I finish with four verses? I just wanted to share this with you in closing. Things that I have learned while I’ve been Prime Minister and, indeed, long before that.
 The first one is 1 Chronicles 13:3. It’s about David. It talks about how in the time of Saul they didn’t inquire of the Lord. And it’s important for us to inquire of the Lord. And this is how David established and set up when he became King. That all other kings, Saul had not done that and we know that over the course of Israel’s history that those who didn’t inquire of the Lord, those who neglected the Lord, those who put what the Lord had put in their heart to one side, then their kingdoms went where they went and the people followed them where they went. And we all remember what happened when that occurred and this is a constant reminder to me just in my own personal walk and I’m encouraged by the people I’ve mentioned already tonight and many more. That is something I seem to do and a lot of people outside this place you will understand what I’m talking about, it’s not a political thing. Faith is very much an ingrained part of my life and I just seek His wisdom in the same way you do each and every day and it’s important we do that.
 The second one, I like this one, it’s Psalm 23:5, where he talks about preparing the banquet for you in the presence of your enemies. We’ve got to sit down with them at that banquet. I sit down at that banquet every single day. But that’s where we‘re called. He didn’t prepare a banquet for us in the presence of our greatest admirers and friends who would tell us wonderful and lovely things, as nice as that is. He said, “I have prepared this banquet for you in the presence of your enemies that I will be with you at that table”. It is a wonderful reminder to me each and every day.
 I was up in The Pilbara the other night, and Jenny, many many years ago got me this lovely little verse and she put it in a frame so I’d see it each morning, about being strong and courageous. Do not be discouraged, from Joshua 1:9. There was a young fellow who was up there, he worked in the mines. And he just came up to me because people were just saying “G’day” and we were talking, just came up and said, “Joshua 1:9”. Now, I said I’ve got that one, I’ve got that one.
And when you read, as we all do, the thing that keeps coming back to me over and over and over again, any of us in leadership understand that, is yes, He’s prepared that banquet and yes we inquire of the Lord, but you must be strong. You must be courageous and you must not be discouraged. What I like about that verse is He knows that we’ll be discouraged. He knows that those who will seek to hold us back would have us feel discouraged, so He knows it’s going to happen. It’s no surprise to Him that we may feel like that so He simply says “don’t be”… Be strong, be courageous, do not be discouraged.
 And this came home to me, importantly, during the last election campaign, in fact, and I was up on the Central Coast, and I was up there with Jenny. It was a pretty tough week actually. The last couple of weeks of the campaign and I was at Ken Duncan’s Gallery. And I hadn’t, I didn’t know we were going to go to Ken Duncan’s Gallery, we were speaking at a rally that day and we had to go and hold somewhere as we often do before we go over to the next event. And, I must admit, I was saying to myself “Lord, where are you? Where are you? I’d like a reminder, if that’s okay”. And so I didn’t know I was supposed to be at Ken’s Gallery. Ken’s a great Christian guy as you all know. And I walked into his gallery and there right in front of me was the biggest picture of a soaring eagle that I could imagine. Of course, the verse hit me that soaring on the wings of an eagle, run and do not grow weary, walk do not grow faint. [Isaiah 40:31] But the message I got that day was, “Scott, you’ve got to run to not grow weary. You’ve got to walk to not grow faint. You’ve got to spread your wings like an eagle to soar like an eagle”.
So, I hope those few things encourage you. They certainly encourage me and Jenny every day. We are very grateful for the amazing prayers and support that we get from Christians all around the country. It is an avalanche, the letters we get, the support we get, the books that are sent to me. I’ve got them all there, down in Canberra, it’s quite a library that’s building up. People send me verses, they tell me their stories, they share things with me. They share things with Jenny.
It’s a privilege, it is an absolute privilege. I’ve been in evacuation centres where people thought I was just giving someone a hug and I was praying. And putting my hands on people in various places, laying hands on them and praying in various situations. I was just in Kalbarri, where the cyclone just has gone through. In all these places, it’s been quite a time and God has, I believe, been using us to, in those moments, to be able to provide some relief and comfort and just some reassurance. And we’ll keep doing this for as long as that season is. That’s how we see it. We are called, all of us, for a time and for a season and God would have us use it wisely, and uh, for each day I get up and move ahead. There is just one little thing that’s in my head, ‘for such a time as this, for such a time as this’. God bless you, thank you very much.”
Jesus Film Project carries more than 30 short and feature-length films and has partnered with more than 1,500 ministries to see more than 500 million indicate decisions to follow Jesus. Many missions organizations have called the JESUS film “one of the greatest evangelistic success stories of all time.”
By Mark Ellis –
Taweb* is a terrorist who killed many people, including more than a dozen children. As time went by, however, he felt a growing uneasiness about his role in the killings.
“For most fighters, it’s nothing to them, all the killing,” Taweb told the JESUS Film Project. The lack of peace caused him to leave his band of fighters for a break. After he arrived in his home village, he learned about a visiting team showing the JESUS film privately, house-to-house.
He was intrigued that the film was in his mother tongue. He wasn’t planning to watch the film, but God intervened, and Tawab found himself at one of the private screenings.
“By accident, I watched the JESUS film. I had never heard of Jesus before. I had never heard the message of peace.”
As he watched the story about the life of Jesus taken from the Book of Luke, the power of the Word and the Spirit touched his heart and he became a follower of Jesus. “Taweb found himself transformed by the Holy Spirit as he heard the Word of God, the gospel. The ‘worst of the worst,’ a murderer of innocent children, was forgiven, at peace, clothed in the righteousness of Jesus,” according to the JESUS Film Project report.
After Taweb accepted Christ, he asked the ministry team if they would show the film in his home. When they did, his entire family became followers of Jesus.
“The next night 45 families in his village gathered to watch and they all became believers – about 450 people in all – in this highly resistant area,” the report stated.
In the next four months, 75 of his fellow militants laid down their weapons and became followers of Jesus. “Today, each one of them leads a home church and they are passionately and boldly reaching the people around them, mostly by using ‘JESUS.’”
For God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to become like his Son, so that his Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. (Romans 8:29)
If you want to know more about a personal relationship with God, go here
To learn more about the JESUS Film Project, go here
Renewal Journals – links to 20 Renewal Journals 4 books comprising the 20 Renewal Journals Amazon – free gift note available * I am enjoying these Journals a lot! Read about things that the Bible talks about, but they are happening in our day and age around the world. ~ Deborah Mares
The Queen’s Christmas and Easter Messages – Blog The Queen’sChristmas & Easter Messages – PDFQuotes from The Queen:To many of us our beliefs are of fundamental importance. For me the teachings of Christ and my own personal accountability before God provide a framework in which I try to lead my life. I, like so many of you, have drawn great comfort in difficult times from Christ’s words and example. (2000)* Jesus Christ lived obscurely for most of his life, and never travelled far. He was maligned and rejected by many, though he had done no wrong. And yet, billions of people now follow his teaching and find in him the guiding light for their lives. I am one of them because Christ’s example helps me see the value of doing small things with great love, whoever does them and whatever they themselves believe. (2016) * We remember the birth of Jesus Christ, whose only sanctuary was a stable in Bethlehem. He knew rejection, hardship and persecution. And, yet, it is Jesus Christ’s generous love and example which has inspired me through good times and bad. (2017) * The Christmas story retains its appeal since it doesn’t provide theoretical explanations for the puzzles of life. Instead, it’s about the birth of a child, and the hope that birth 2,000 years ago brought to the world. Only a few people acknowledged Jesus when he was born; now billions follow him. I believe his message of peace on earth and goodwill to all is never out of date. It can be heeded by everyone. It’s needed as much as ever. (2018) *Of course, at the heart of the Christmas story lies the birth of a child, a seemingly small and insignificant step overlooked by many in Bethlehem. But in time, through his teaching and by his example, Jesus Christ would show the world how small steps, taken in faith and in hope, can overcome long-held differences and deep-seated divisions to bring harmony and understanding. (2019)The discovery of the risen Christ on the first Easter Day gave his followers new hope and fresh purpose, and we can all take heart from this. … May the living flame of the Easter hope be a steady guide as we face the future. (2020 Easter)Every year, we herald the coming of Christmas by turning on the lights. And light does more than create a festive mood. Light brings hope. For Christians, Jesus is “the light of the world” … The teachings of Christ have served as my inner light, as has the sense of purpose we can find in coming together to worship. … Let the light of Christmas, the spirit of selflessness, love, and above all hope, guide us in the times ahead. (2020 Christmas)Amazon link – The Queen’s Christmas and Easter Messages Gift Edition in Colour availableAmazon Reviews: ***** 1. ‘The Queen’s Christmas & Easter Messages’ is an appealing, highly unusual and very creative anthology. This book would be the perfect Christmas present.
***** 2. I haven’t seen anyone else draw the events of these years together in this way before. A fascinating read. 5 Stars.
***** 3. A new and innovative approach to the Christmas Story and its clear message of peace and goodwill to all. It is a rewarding experience to read it from cover to cover. ***** 4. The Queen Would Be Proud – 5 stars: What an amazing collection! This has so many wonderful Christmas messages and is a great addition to any family during the holiday season.
* 21st Century Revivals Chapter 7 inFlashpoints of Revival(2020 update)
Amazon & Kindle – Discovering ASLAN * This is a remarkable work and something quite unique that I’ve not come across before ~ Russ Burg * One of the most interesting devotionals ever! As a huge fan of all things Narnia, I am so grateful for this deeper aspect of the truths in C.S. Lewis’ stories. ~ Belinda S. * Best companion work I know of. … Either for a young person who is interested in exploring more, or as a resource on a pastor’s desk, it is an invaluable companion to the original series. ~ Amazon Customer * This is a great companion when you read, and is a stand-alone teaching on the depths of teaching that C.S. Lewis weaves into Aslan’s character. Definitely worth your time. ~ Steve Loopstra
The Lion of Judah – Blog six books combinedinto one book The Lion of Judah – PDF READ SAMPLE Amazon links * Looking for a great book to help you meditate on the wonder of Jesus in all his richness and grandeur and love? Geoff Waugh has helpfully and thoughtfully brought together wide-ranging biblical passages… Read this book prayerfully and you will not be the same! ~ John Olley. * This book is full of information, biblical information. I have learned so much from it … If you want to learn more from the Bible, this is the book to read. ~ A. Aldridge
Revival Fires – updated to 2020 – Blog Revival Fires – PDF READ SAMPLE Amazon edition * I know of no other book like this one that provides rapid-fire, easy-to-read, factual literary snapshots of virtually every well-known revival since Pentecost. As I read this book, I was thrilled to see how God has been so mightily at work in so many different times and places.I felt like I had grasped the overall picture of revival for the first time” ~ C Peter Wagner
Flashpointsof Revival – updated to 2020 – Blog Flashpoints of Revival – updated PDF READ SAMPLE * I know of no other book like this one that provides rapid-fire, easy-to-read, factual literary snapshots of virtually every well-known revival since Pentecost. As I read this book, I was thrilled to see how God has been so mightily at work in so many different times and places.I felt like I had grasped the overall picture of revival for the first time” ~ C Peter Wagner
* South Pacific Revivals gives some very illuminating information about numerous little-known revivals in the region… A surprising number of movements after 1950 are provided – including islands and places I had never before heard of! A number of remarkable personal testimonies are included, and photos are dotted throughout the book. Some useful appendices are included, such as ‘Characteristics of Revivals from Acts 2’ and ‘Examples of Repentance and Revival’. ~ Blue Yonder
DiscoveringAslan – Blog Discovering Aslan– PDF Devotional commentary about Jesus
The Lion of Judah from The Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis * This is a remarkable work and something quite unique that I’ve not come across before ~ Russ Burg * One of the most interesting devotionals ever! As a huge fan of all things Narnia, I am so grateful for this deeper aspect of the truths in C.S. Lewis’ stories. ~ Belinda S. * Best companion work I know of. … Either for a young person who is interested in exploring more, or as a resource on a pastor’s desk, it is an invaluable companion to the original series. ~ Amazon Customer * This is a great companion when you read, and is a stand-alone teaching on the depths of teaching that C.S. Lewis weaves into Aslan’s character. Definitely worth your time. ~ Steve Loopstra
(7) The Lion of Judah – Blog The Lion of Judah– PDF 6 books in one volume READ SAMPLE * Looking for a great book to help you meditate on the wonder of Jesus in all his richness and grandeur and love? Geoff Waugh has helpfully and thoughtfully brought together wide-ranging biblical passages… Read this book prayerfully and you will not be the same! ~ John Olley.
* This book is full of information, biblical information. I have learned so much from it … If you want to learn more from the Bible, this is the book to read. ~ A. Aldridge
The 2021 Worldwide Good Friday Broadcast reached more than 200 million people. This two-hour event was broadcast in 186 countries, 24 territories, and translated into 39 languages. They heard from more than 1.3 million people who reached out since the Good Friday event, a sign Nick Hall said that we’re living through “the most exciting evangelistic opportunity of our lifetime.”
While many Americans are still living life in a not-so-normal way, evangelism efforts haven’t slowed down; they’re just happening in new ways. That is certainly the case with Pulse, which brands itself as a “millennial-led evangelism movement.” The ministry’s founder, evangelist Nick Hall, hosted Pulse’s second annual Worldwide Good Friday Broadcast, which reached more than 200 million people. This year’s two-hour event, live-streamed on CBN News’ YouTube channel, was broadcast from the Museum of the Bible in Washington, D.C., where Hall said the Pulse vision is for the Good Friday service to become “an annual rallying cry for people to learn and talk about Jesus.” In total, the service was broadcast in 186 countries, 24 territories, and translated into 39 languages.
Pulse has heard from more than 1.3 million people who have reached out since the Good Friday event, a sign Hall said that we’re living through “the most exciting evangelistic opportunity of our lifetime.” “Truly, this is an Ephesians 3:20, ‘exceedingly, abundantly more,’ moment as we believe God is bringing in an unprecedented harvest during these trying days,” Hall said. “Our team is already working to build and translate our Move Closer app platform and digital response systems to keep up with what God is doing.” “Far from this being about Pulse,” he added, “this is about Jesus being lifted high through the global body of Christ, the church.” Move Closer is “a free app designed to help the next generation make disciples” and serves as a connection point for individual users, small groups, and churches, according to the Good Friday service.
Siberia: The light of Christ in the darkness of Winter
Elena is a field worker with Operation Mobilisation. In the year 2000 she moved to Arctic Russia to share the gospel with the Nenets people by translating the Bible in their language.
The Nenets are indigenous reindeer herders living in Northern Siberia, including the Yamal Peninsula. ‘Yamal’ means ‘The End of the Earth’. Out on the tundra, locals travel by snowmobile or reindeer sled. To reach particularly remote villages, it takes two to four hours by helicopter from Salekhard, the main city in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug (district). The Yamal Peninsula is home to more reindeer than people and winter lasts nine months. “It’s very cold; minus 40°C can be pleasant for a walk if there is no wind,” Elena jokes.
The Nenets minority group has a population of around 45,000 people. Half of them live in Russian-speaking villages, while the other half are nomadic reindeer herders who live on the tundra and speak the Nenets language. Translating the Bible has been a complicated process, but today four books of the New Testament are in print, while others are in progress. OM East also published and illustrated two Bible storybooks.
‘Then I understood the meaning of light’
“I moved to Arctic Russia during December, the darkest month,” Elena recalled. “One day when I was testing translations, the electricity suddenly cut out. We sat without light all day. It was dark! Then I understood the meaning of light.” For Elena this experience of the Arctic winter darkness is a picture of life without Jesus Christ. Her desire is for the Nenets to know Jesus as the light of the world.
“I want every Nenets child to have a Bible,” she says. Over the past years she has distributed thousands of Bible storybooks. Wherever she came, the children took more interest in these Bible storybooks than in the chocolate she brought.
Their nomadic lifestyle makes it difficult for the reindeer herders to carry a collection of Christian literature. “They don’t have extra things – just the minimum,” Elena explains. “They have one pot, one kettle, and they don’t need a freezer!” However, they do have mobile phones. Her solution is to develop publications into applications so they can be stored on mobile phones, also allowing individuals to listen to the text. OM East plans to help provide these resources digitally.
The Warmest Tent on Earth – Pitching in the Siberian Arctic Winter
About 16 years ago, Elena met Neko, a Nenets woman who invited her to visit two family members on the tundra. Elena tested a translation by reading some Scripture verses to their hosts. They reacted strongly by walking out, leaving her alone in the tent. Jesus’ teaching had touched a nerve. But Neko changed, and the next time they met she had decided to be baptised and insisted on giving Elena a tithe to print Mark’s Gospel.
Elena prays for a revival among the Nenets. Today there are around 200 known Nenets believers, representing a small percentage of the population. The indigenous people group believes in numerous gods. For many, the reindeer are their life, their source of food, clothes, transport and shelter. Elena longs for the Nenets to acknowledge their Creator as their true provider and life-giver.
Prayer focus – Give praise to God who is light. Give thanks that He speaks through His Word. Pray the Nenets will put their trust in Jesus and receive His salvation. Pray for wisdom as Elena helps make God’s truth available. Pray that believers grow strong in their faith.
The Roe v. Wade movie available now onlivestream is an intense, chilling and frustrating documentary about how a cabal of liberal leaders harnessed the women’s movement and complicit media to ramrod abortion through the Supreme Court using fraudulent statistics and a demonization of Catholicism.
“I knew all along life exists at conception,” Dr. Bernard says in the movie. “I’d taken part in over 70,000 abortions. I knew in my heart that what I was doing was wrong, and I lied. I lied to the world, I lied to God, I lied to me. But I kept on killing until I had the courage to face the absolute horror of what I was doing.”
Dr. Bernard decided to bear the torch for abortion after he paid for his girlfriend to “terminate” her pregnancy. He teamed up with Larry Lader, the so-called Father of Abortion in America. A “disciple” of Margaret Sanger, Lader crusaded unscrupulously to push through his atheistic agenda. Both Nathanson and Lader made millions through abortions and referrals. The drive was never motivated by a woman’s right or health but by ego and greed, the movie shows.
The nearly two-hour movie is unrelenting. There’s hardly a light moment. This is understandable given the gargantuan devastation abortion has perpetrated in America. Since Roe v. Wade in 1973, an estimated 64 million babies have been aborted. Every 30 seconds a baby is aborted. African American babies account for 40% of abortions. Planned Parenthood made $1.6 billion last year, according to statistics provided in the movie.
In one grim moment, Dr. Nathanson and Lader share a joke jingle from med school:
There’s a fortune in abortion
Just a twist of the wrist and you’re through
The population of the nation
Won’t grow if it’s left up to you.
There’s a gold mine in the sex line
You never bother for the father.
Much of the movie focuses on how supreme court justices caved under pressure and voted despite having family members volunteering for Planned Parenthood, an obvious conflict of interest. It also shows how D.A. Wade’s attorney failed to call expert witnesses to discuss how life starts at conception, bungling the lawsuit in its early stages.
Another part of the movie focuses on how lawyers unethically used Norma McCorvey, under the court-shrouded name Jane Roe, to bring a case even when she was no longer pregnant. McCorvey gave birth to the child. McCorvey later turned against the pro-choice movement, favoring life.
Already, the secular media is slamming Roe v. Wade as conspiracy theory, but the movie’s website has its own fact-check page where it provides the documentation for their allegations (see God Reports’ analysis of the manipulations that got the Supreme decision through).
In a dramatic scene that represents a turning point for Dr. Nathanson, Dr. Jefferson confronts him about the lies and rationalizations he’s used to kill unborn babies. Dr. Nathanson defends himself against her accusing questions, saying that he even aborted his own girlfriend’s baby. But the scene flashes back to the actual occurrence and shows that remorse is beginning to crack his façade.
Roe v. Wade is a must-see for Christians. It is brilliantly written and directed, though it bogs down somewhat amidst the legal wrangling. It could use a bit more of the heroic aspects in this drama, but the lack of optimism is understandable given the on-going onslaught of lies in the media and by liberal politicians perpetrating this culture of death.
The dramatic search and rescue of Adul Sam-on, 11 members of his soccer team and their coach trapped in a Thai cave in June 2018 thrust them into the international spotlight and changed their lives. Adul, the only English speaker in the group, communicated with the rescuers when they were found nine days later. All photos courtesy of Adul Sam-on unless otherwise stated.
The darkness was overwhelming. The silence deafening. The air was cold.
This was how Adul Sam-on, then 14, described being trapped in the Tham Luang cave underneath a mountain range in Chiang Rai, Thailand, with no way out.
On June 23, 2018, Adul, his eleven teammates from the Wild Boars football team – between the ages of 11 and 17 – and their assistant coach, 25, went to explore the snaking 10.3km-long cave system. But were forced deeper in and stranded by rising waters.
Adul moved to the US last year. He will be moving into his sophomore year in college soon.
As the Thai cave boys – as they came to be known – lost count of days in the dark and hoped to be found, the world prayed, watched and waited as the dramatic search and rescue efforts by Thai and international teams unfolded.
But for Adul, now 17, his story of hope began a long time before the cave incident three years ago.
Across the border
Adul was born in the southern region of the self-governing Wa state of Myanmar. It shares the border with Thailand.
When Adul was three years old, his parents gave his auntie, Yex Kap Htane, their blessings to take Adul across the border to Thailand to give him a shot at a better life.
Ps Go (left) and wife, Yex Kap (right), praying over Adul on his birthday. Photo courtesy of Ps Go Shin Maung.
Yex and her husband, Ps Go Shin Muang, raised Adul as their own, becoming his “second set of parents”.
The couple, now in their 40s, received a calling from God to move from Myanmar to Chiang Rai to start Maesai Grace Church for Wa migrants.
Adul’s story of hope began a long time before the cave incident.
They also started a schooling programme to care for and give a brighter future to the children of Wa natives who have either moved to Mae Sai to work or who are stuck in Wa.
According to a Human Rights Watch report, Wa was notorious for inducting children into its military wing.
“These children don’t even have a chance to grow up and straight away they become child soldiers,” Ps Go told Salt&Light. “That is no future for a child.”
Adul grew up enjoying a childhood and getting a basic education that he would not have had in Wa.
Life, according to Adul, was simple and laid back. He attended classes from morning till afternoon before soccer practice. Afterwards, he would return to the church hostel for dinner and quiet time before turning in for the night.
No way out
That simple life would never be the same after June 23, 2018.
The Wild Boars had just finished a training session and decided to explore a favourite haunt – the Tham Luang cave – with their assistant coach. The boys and their coach had often wandered deep into the snaking 10.3km-long cave system.
Adul (second from right) with his 11 teammates on one of their excursions to the cave. Photo from Facebook page of Nopparat Kantawong, head coach of the Wild Boars. He had not gone into the cave with the boys as he had another appointment that day.
What was supposed to be an hour-long excursion turned into a 17-day ordeal.
A flash flood forced the 13 deeper into the cave. The rising water level made it impossible for them to retrace their steps out of the cave. They were not able to find an alternative way out.
“What might be surprising is that none of us really panicked,” Adul told Salt&Light. “We just figured that we’d wait until the tide dropped, even if it’s for a night.”
When night fell, their worried parents started scrambling and asking each other: “Where were the Wild Boars?”
When they realised that the boys might have been stuck in the cave, they rushed to its entrance, where they discovered the boys’ bikes and belongings.
Adul’s simple life would never be the same after June 23, 2018.
Over at Maesai Grace Church, Ps Go’s initial reaction to the news was one of shock. All he could think of was to pray for their safety.
Ps Go mobilised prayer groups across the church to fast and intercede for the boys. He and other church members took turns to wait outside the cave for updates from the authorities.
Ps Go and his wife struggled to explain to Adul’s parents what exactly was happening. Communication was slow as Adul’s parents back in Wa had little access to the internet.
Ps Go and his wife also struggled with assuring them that their son would be safe, and the weight of guilt and responsibility if Adul did not make it out alive. Their nights were sleepless while Adul was trapped.
Someone will come
The group in the cave were marooned on an elevated rock 4km from its entrance. On some days, they felt hopeful. On others, not quite so.
He must have prayed The Lord’s Prayer and sung How Great is Our God “thousands of times” in the cave.
Doubt and panic grew the longer they waited, said Adul.
“It’s been so long. Really? Is nobody coming?” they would say.
They knew that they were stuck. Their way into the cave was probably inaccessible.
What they did not know was that a monumental search and rescue effort was mounting outside the cave. It involved 10,000 people. They included the Thai navy, army, airforce and police, engineers, geologists, rescue specialists – from Thailand and overseas – and cave divers from countries that included Singapore, the UK, Belgium and Australia.
The search was complicated by heavy rainfall flooding the cave, cutting off rescuers from parts of it.
Adul, the only Christian in the group, turned to prayer and worship. He looked for a small space away from the others where he could do this.
“When the panic first set in, I just felt like I had to talk to God,” he said. “He gave me a very strong belief that someone would come for us.
Ps Go mobilised prayer groups across the church to fast and intercede for the boys.
“Even though the doubts and fears were there, this strange belief, something I never felt before the cave, was the strongest thing I felt.”
Adul also relied on The Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13) and one of his favourite songs, How Great is Our God, for strength. He said that he must have prayed and sung them “thousands of times” in the cave.
In one of those quiet moments in the dark, he received a revelation about God’s plan.
“I couldn’t see much in the cave, and I realised that’s quite similar to how I can’t see God in real life. But I have to trust that He’s going to show His power and goodness at the end.”
Trapped without food
The group were trapped without food. They drank water dripping from the cave ceiling.
“I like how Jesus overcame his hunger and thirst just by praying and talking to God.”
As the days passed, the group found their hunger increasingly difficult to bear. Adul was encouraged by the story of Jesus being tempted in the desert. (Matthew 4:1-11).
“I like how Jesus overcame his hunger and thirst just by praying and talking to God.”
Looking back, Adul said: “Jesus had no food and drink for 40 days. I was only in there for a few days; I probably could have stayed for a while longer.”
Happy to see someone else
Thankfully, Adul and friends did not have to stay longer than 17 days. On July 2, 2018 – nine days after being trapped – a pair of British divers found the group.
Adul immediately bounced up when he saw the heads of two divers break the surface of the water.
“I was just so happy to see someone else.”
The rescue divers’ camera footage on discovering the Wild Boars. Screengrab of video from Thai Navy Seal Facebook.
Adul was the only English-speaker in the group. Through him, the others told the divers they wanted food, and learnt how long they had been in the cave.
Camera footage of the divers’ exchange with Adul and the group went viral when it was first released, bringing jubilation to millions around the world who were anxiously following the massive search effort. Adul captured hearts with his politeness and ability to speak English. He had picked up conversational English while interacting with missionaries who had visited Maesai Grace. He also speaks Thai, Burmese, Mandarin and Wa.
The divers spent some time with them before leaving their lights behind, along with promises to return with food and help.
When Ps Go heard the news that the boys were alive, he was able to assure Adul’s parents that their son was safe.
“God showed that He’s faithful, He answered our prayers,” said Ps Go.
“Sometimes I forget that I really didn’t do anything to deserve this. All I did was get stuck in a cave!”
Rescuers then strategised how to bring the 13 – who had no experience diving – out of the flooded, rocky and winding labyrinth that would more than challenge even experienced cave divers. It was was deemed mission impossible by many.
The death of a former Thai Navy Seal diver – who lost consciousness after placing oxygen tanks along the rescue route – highlighted the danger and risk of the extraction. Later in the year, a Thai Navy Seal would die from a blood infection he contracted during the operation.
Rescuers had to move quickly with more rain expected to totally flood the cave. In a complex, elaborate operation that involved a chain of nearly 100 divers, the group were extracted from the labyrinth in stages over three days.
Each Wild Boar was given a full-face mask to ensure that they could breathe, was secured to a stretcher and sedated to prevent them from panicking.
The last boy and the coach were released from the cave on July 10, 2018. Their ordeal had lasted 17 days.
A new life, a new continent
Adul’s life now is a far cry from what it was before the cave incident. He attributes it solely to God.
“Sometimes I forget that I really didn’t do anything to deserve this. All I did was get stuck in a cave!” he said half in jest.
“But then I remember that this is God blessing me and I am just so grateful.”
“God showed that He’s faithful, He answered our prayers.”
Adul, who was previously considered stateless in Thailand, was granted Thai citizenship, along with two of the Wild Boars and their coach.
He has also been blessed by a family in the United States who were moved to sponsor his college education and boarding. He moved to New York state last year, and will soon be entering his sophomore year.
As part of his gratitude to God, Adul sees it as his duty to share his story.
Already, it has borne fruit. Adul’s English tutor came to accept Christ and was baptised at Maesai Grace, said Ps Go.
Adul (back row on the left) with his neighbours in the US.
Adul hopes that his story will inspire many more.
“We can’t believe in God only after He does something amazing. We have to believe in Him even though we can’t see or know what He’s doing,” he said.
For Adul, that was especially when the darkness was overwhelming, the silence deafening and the air was cold.
Silas is an undergraduate studying business. His internship at Salt&Light is a step towards discovering what purpose in God looks like and what it means. He is secretly hoping that it lies in eating fried chicken for a living.
When a man named Tazeem was listening to the radio one day, he heard a Christian share the gospel in his own language.
The message was about God’s love for people, forgiveness in Jesus and the power of prayer, and it deeply encouraged him. He wanted to know more, but never found the radio broadcast again. Nevertheless, he started to share the message he had heard with others in his village.
On one of those occasions he met an elderly woman who sometimes would sing praise songs to God. This was not common in a Muslim community. When she heard Tazeem share the message he had heard on the radio she smiled broadly and said: “So now there are two of us here, and you can worship God together with me. From now on you are my son!”
Neither Tazeem nor his new friend owned a Bible. But the woman – whom he affectionately referred to as ‘Old Mother’ – had learned some of the chronological storytelling from a brief exposure to church planters in another community. The two of them began working together to share what they knew of God’s Word with their friends and neighbors. They had a very simple message: “Come to Jesus. This is the right way. Just come!”
One day, the mother of the sheikh in the town began to manifest demonic spirits. She was taken to the witch doctors, and then to the Muslim marabouts who read the Qur’an to her, but to no avail. In a brief moment of lucidity she exclaimed: “I must go to the home of Old Mother and her boy!” And with that one brief sentence she ran from the sheikh’s home straight to the Christian woman’s house.
The demonized woman, however, was deeply in the clutches of the enemy. The moment she crossed the threshold of the Christian’s home, her body froze and she collapsed helpless on the floor. For eight days she lay on a sleeping mat, unable to move. She did not eat, speak or use the latrine. She was in a fixed position while Tazeem and ‘Old Mother’ prayed. Then suddenly, on the eighth day, the evil spirits left her. She stood up and spoke, and the faithful Christians began to minister to her needs.
Word went throughout the village instantaneously: “The sheikh’s mother is healed! The spirits have been defeated!”
The sheikh heard the news and came running. When he saw his mother eating and in her right mind, he immediately collapsed to his knees and begged Tazeem to teach him about his God. And that day, both the sheikh and his mother became followers of Jesus.
The news spread quickly, and people from the village began to flood the Christian woman’s home, seeking healings and deliverance from evil influences through the power of her God. The little hut looked like an outpatient clinic, a hospital for body and soul.
But the Muslim leaders in the area had also heard about the sheikh’s ‘betrayal of Islam’, and they brought together a committee to deal with him. They armed themselves with spears, knives and guns, and set out to find the Christian sheikh. Luckily, he was warned in time and found sanctuary in the police station. When the police wanted to arrest the murderous party, he stepped forward and said: “Please, do not arrest them. I have already forgiven them! As long as they do me no harm, I do not want to take them before the magistrates.”
Today that former sheikh is planting churches, and those churches are multiplying. In that area of 70 villages, there are now 17 small churches with about 125 new Christians. Persecution is still present, but there is a foothold of the gospel in this challenging place.
Source: Tazeem, interviewed by Jerry Trousdale for his book ‘Miraculous Movements’
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