You've read my recent posts about the increase in persecution on the mission field. It's not only pastors and churches in remote villages being attacked, but there is organized attack against the Church and organizations that work to grow and strengthen the Church. This attack even affects -- you guessed it -- my blog. While we try to figure out what I can share on my blog and what I cannot, the already sparse stories from the mission field may become even more sparse. My simple stories here can mean life or death to a missionary or area of ministry.
Praise Report: The pastor and believers mentioned in my post two weeks ago have been released and charges have been cleared! Praise God! We firmly believe it was only because of your prayers that this happened.
Sobering evening: About three months ago, I spoke to a middle-aged man who lives two houses down from us. He told me his name was Gary and his wife was Diane. We spoke briefly that morning and I brought up the topic of God and church. He said his son went to church, but as for them: "We're good people. We don't need church." I asked how we could be praying for him and his wife and he responded again, "There's nothing. We're fine."
I became concerned recently when his business truck didn't leave at the usual 6AM time. And then the business stickers were removed. Today, I spoke with his wife and son as they were leaving the house. "So you know the story," his son said. What story, I replied. "Dad died of a heart attack last month."
I would feel more helpless except for something that the wife and son asked separately. "Are you the girls that live just a couple doors down? Dad came home one evening and said, 'The girls down the street are praying for us.' That really meant something to him."
Pray the Lord will provide a way to reach out to our neighbors as well.