I just like it...and I'm grateful.

I really love the teaching and preaching at Salem Alliance. We're in the midst of a series called "Leaving the Land of Grey," a study of the Book of John. There have been a couple of messages lately that have just really struck a chord with me. I'm so grateful for the privilege of hearing God's Word preached. I've heard 2 different stories this week of people who are in areas where they don't have that kind of freedom, or at least it doesn't seem so.

One definitely not...this week at our staff coffee, a couple came in to share about their experience on the mission field. They are serving in an area where they can't even tell us where they are or what they are doing. They choose their words carefully, for where they serve they cannot say missionary. What? You can't say missionary? Nope. They carefully have to think of whether or not they can safely speak of what they do. They are in a church, at a staff meeting of people who lovingly pray and support them...and still, they are carefully choosing words. I mean these faithful people (who's real name I don't even know) are truly on the front lines of a spiritual battle that brings them into an area of the world so void of people who know Christ that they are bold with the love of Christ, trusting Him for opportunities to boldly share the Words of Christ with them. It's relationship. It's love for Him. It's love for people.

In another situation we heard of a persecuted pastor in an area in the middle east, who literally was warned of a death threat and attack on him and his family, to later find out that it was the assassins in his home scouting out the lay of the land to fulfill this "threat." He was also literally covered on the floorboard of a back seat of a vehicle to be whisked to the airport, as he and his family had to flee from this country. A man, a family, who clearly and wholeheartedly love the Lord. A clear example in current time of someone persecuted for his faith...and protected by the Lord for a plan that has yet to be revealed to them.

Me - I sit in a church pew and listen to amazing truths being unfolded before me. I stand on a platform and bring those truths to middle school students. I sit in my home, or office, or car and read my very own personal copy of the Bible and listen to music that boldly proclaims Jesus as the Christ. I have no clue what these other people face day in and day out. I've got it easy. We've got it easy. Comparatively. Do we face struggles? Sure, sometimes it can be hard. But there are others who are so much more persecuted.

And we (I'll include all of us) regularly take for granted the privileges and opportunities before us to hear, teach, preach, boldly proclaim Jesus as Christ. Yet, these who are under scrutiny and in areas that are in spiritually dark areas of the world...they are so much bolder, more confident (even in their choice words)...Lord forgive me.

So...here's are links to where you can listen to the podcasts of recent messages that have been a great encouragement & challenge to me. Today's was extra cool. I'll post that link as well when it shows up...Listen. Breathe it in. Ask God to reveal Himself to you in a new and amazing way. May your life be changed and transformed into His likeness. May my life be changed and transformed to His likeness.

Steve Fowler - Talking Taxi
John Stumbo - Kingdom Confusion
Barbara Fletcher - What Does Jesus Think of Doubters?



©2009 Until... | by TNB