Everyone who has faith in Christ will at some point have to deal with others who do not believe. Perhaps it was a teacher who told you in middle school that you were not allowed to give thanks for your lunch. It may have been other kids in your high school who laughed at you for not wanting to drink a beer with them. It could be that co-worker who says you are ‘gay’ because you won’t look at porn. Perhaps your neighbor is of a different faith and you openly and freely debate together about your different beliefs. Sometimes these different interactions can be hard as they stretch you and challenge you to stand firm on your faith. Sometimes the interactions are friendly and perhaps make you raise questions about your faith. Yet do we realize how lucky we are to be able to be open about our beliefs? How blessed we are that we can openly discuss what God has put on our hearts? Do we rejoice that our ‘suffering’ might just be laughter or mocking from our peers?
There are so many places in the world where people do not have the freedom to believe. Let us remember our brothers and sisters in Christ who truly are suffering for Christ as you read this now. For the men and women who are imprisoned. For those who live in fear that someone will find out that they love Jesus. Pray for those who are sentenced to death. For those who are sent to work camps for the rest of their life along with their children and their children’s children for their own faith. Don’t forget those who are beaten, raped, and tortured in front of their children and community.
The following is a list of the top 50 places in the world where it is dangerous to be a Christian. The ECC has missionaries in and/or works with local churches in 7 of these countries.
- North Korea
- Saudi Arabia