“Then He came to Bethsaida; and they brought a blind man to Him, and begged Him to touch him. So he took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the town. And when He had spit on his eyes and put His hands on him, he asked him if he saw anything. And he looked up and said, ‘I see men like trees, walking.’ Then He put His hands on his eyes again and made him look up. And he was restored and saw everyone clearly.” –Mark 8:22-25 (NKJV)
I relate to this blind man. Before I began my internship at The Voice of the Martyrs, I was blind to the reality of the world. I lived in a type of fantasy where everything was happy, everything catered to my individualism and the only problems I had were
the drama that this life of luxury offers.
I am free to live, act and worship how and when I want. I am influenced by mindless entertainment much more than I would like to admit. I often catch myself thinking narcissistically that
the world really does revolve around me.
Somehow, I have bought into the mindset of individualism.
I spend my money, my time and my talent on temporary things.
I can be selective about the things that impassion me, but as I read about how Christians around the world are persecuted, my spirit is overwhelmed. Our persecuted brothers and sisters in Christ face threats, incarceration, torture and death on a daily basis. I recently read of a martyr who was beaten with metal
rods until he died. Another had iron pipes fastened around his legs and tightened with screws. Prison guards beat on the pipes with a hammer until the vibrations broke the bones in both his legs. Since coming to VOM, I have read stories of men, women and children that are treated in ways I could never imagine - despite the countless war, horror and action films I have watched. My eyes are now wide open to the devastation and cruelty that so many face in this world.
While what believers face is horrific, it is encouraging to see how VOM helps get these people back on their feet. I am fortunate to read the background stories of some of these people
. One young woman who is the same age as me was beaten and almost raped by a group of extremists in Pakistan. She is receiving job training to provide herself with an income . Through her new skills, s he has gained confidence and has learned to read and write. This is just one of the many stories of those VOM helps.
VOM and its partners are working in greater ways than we realize. They simply ask for your support in prayer, donations and volunteered time. Become a sponsor for the Bibles Unbound program. Spread awareness about the persecuted church
to your friends, family and co-workers. Write to imprisoned Christians at www.prisonalert.com. Invite a trained VOM speaker to come to your church and speak about the powerful, inspiring testimonies of persecuted Christians.
The reality is: there are many ways you can
support the persecuted church . How will you help?