Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘persecuted church’ Category

HeartCry is a missionary organization led by Paul Washer.  They recently posted a video that should lead us to pray for the Persecuted Church in Asia.

The ending is really good.  Everything about it capture my heartbeat.

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

kayla-mueller

This news story was quite sad to read.

Four former hostages who were held by the Islamic State terror group at an abandoned oil refinery in Syria in 2014 have revealed that Kayla Mueller, the Christian aid worker who was slain in IS captivity last year, refused to deny Jesus Christ despite being repeatedly raped and tortured.

Frida Saide of Sweden and Patricia Chavez of Peru and Belgium, who were held alongside 26-year-old Mueller in the oil refinery, said that despite what Mueller was forced to suffer through, she remained steadfast in her Christian faith, The Associated Press reports.

Chavez noted that Mueller acted like a big sister to the other captured girls, looking to keep up their spirits despite the grim situation they were in.

“They would scream at her and they would, you know, blame her for everything that America has done in the world,” Saide said, according to AP.

“She was amazing. She was a really strong girl,” Chavez said.

Mueller’s family in Arizona received news of her death in February 2015, after IS sent photos of her dead body in a white burial shroud, supposedly as a sign of respect. The humanitarian worker is believed to have been married off to a top IS official during her captivity.

The jihadist group claimed that Mueller, who was captured in 2013 after leaving a hospital in Syria, had been killed during a Jordanian airstrike on one of its targets.

Muller’s strong Christian faith was evident in her letters to her family, where she explained that faith gave her courage.

“I remember mom always telling me that all in all in the end the only one you really have is God. I have come to a place in experience where, in every sense of the word, I have surrendered myself to our creator b/c literally there was no else … + by God + by your prayers I have felt tenderly cradled in freefall,” she wrote in one of her letters.

You can read the rest over at Persecution.org.

It made me think about how evil ISIS is.

It also made me think about the reality of Christian persecution.  How God doesn’t promise us a rose garden in this life.

I hope the other hostages would come to know Christ as a result of her testimony.

Read Full Post »

Boko Haram

Vice News has produced some of the most amazing news documentaries I’ve seen concerning the world’s most troubled flashpoints.  They have done some good series on ISIS and Iraq and now they have also produced a three part series documentary that looks at the Islamic Terrorist Group Boko Haram and the Nigerian army’s effort against this terrorist group.  Journalist Kaj Larsen is a former Navy SEAL and produced this excellent documentary.  He provides us a rare candid glimpse of the conflict and goes where few Western Journalist has gone.  It is not all pretty and viewers must be warned.  I share this because for a Christian blog I think it is important to know specifically what is going on in a part of the world that some are praying about especially with the terrible news last year of captured Christian girls by this group of thugs.  War is ugly and I don’t think the videos sanitize it.  Yet at the same time we see some of the beauty of Nigeria and the human stories.

Here are the videos below:

I thought the last video stood out among the three.  As a military man I felt watching this that some of the tactical ways or lack of being tactical during the advance was something that didn’t make me comfortable although the Nigerian Army unit seems to be doing pretty good compared to Third World Army’s standard.  I was also strucked by all the military men in this series of how clear they understood their mission and how battle hardened they were and this is important to remember lest Western military advisers forget that these guys are serious and are literally fighting for their own survival and their family’s survival.

There are glimpses of bad theology in the documentary.  Sadly I think it reveals the condition of not just Nigeria but the world we live in.

Read Full Post »

Unrelated author’s personal note: If you follow our blog, I want to give a personal update.  Much has transpired since I’ve been on vacation.  I think the Lord has changed me and my perspective in this unforseen event with our ministry while I was gone on vacation.  I think I have been challenged to grow deeper in Christ in a good way but much of it will never be told publicly.  Thank you all who have prayed for me online here this anonymous prayer request, in heaven you will know what was prayed for and that the Lord answered.

10599720_1530328533864209_8021399596401775723_n

I thought I take some break from some heavy stuff from my personal life to talk about another heavier topic: ISIS.

There are weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq; it’s called ISIS.

Coming from the US what people are posting of themselves that is trending right now in social media is the ice bucket challenge; meanwhile coming from the Middle East what people are posting of themselves that is trending right now in social media are graphic video of people kicking the bucket. Obama’s action against ISIS is a drop in the bucket and I think it has to do with his intent early in his presidency to end the war on terror being on his bucket list.

Somebody online has asked me in light of my rhetoric if that means i’m for a military operation involving massive ground troops.  Here’s my thoughts:

I propose a better plan than massive ground troops: I think a better plan is to hit this new Islamic State where it hurts; hit them logistically. I am sure you have heard the military maxim: “Amateurs study strategy ; experts study logistics” you can’t wage war unless you have capital to support your army; I don’t care if you are a die hard radical but you can’t establish any state without beans and bullets; even extremists will start having low morale. The resources that ISIS have to finance their army is stolen goods from their victims and oil that they sell in the black market.  Concerning captured assets, these can only last that long since it will be used up and then there is a need to continually expand and find more victims.  But expansion itself is costly and unpredictable.  The biggest stable source of funding the war is oil  But who do they sell it to? It has to be someone that can refine crude oil. Turkey? Saudi Arabia? Kuwait? Turkey want to expand their own brand of Isamic Neo-Ottoman empire vision and I doubt it’s them; Saudis and Kuwait has been supporting those against Assad and their are many Wahabi sympathizers if not Wahabis Sunnis themselves that share this particular ideologically. I submit we disable their ability to process oil by means of Naval blockade of the oil, and the use of air bombing and Special Operations Forces against oil assets in ISIS hands.

We need to stop our not so covert effort at equipping the Free Syrian Army as well since FSA are terrible fighters and their gear keep on falling into ISIS hands.  Just look at the uniforms, weapons and heavy vehicles ISIS has.

Hopefully Iran and Russia would continue to be opportunists and arm Assad in Syria and Iraq, both countries whom ISIS are fighting.  If these countries continue to arm both those countries it helps us not to give up more of our military hardware.   Don’t forget Iran has a strong motivation to expand in their region and be pro-Shiites (which ISIS is against) in Iraq and Sryia; Russia also has renewed their influence in the Slavic states and the Middle East (Russia is pro-Assad with a naval base in Syria and trainers right now fighting in Syria and they just recently entered the Iraqi scene by selling attack helicopters and having “trainers” on the ground in Iraq to teach and carry out actual Attack helicopter sorties).

The only thing we need to do is destroy the oil capability of ISIS selling oil and we will see the end of cash flow sustaining their Islamic State and we will see their ability to field an army dwindle (insurgents need to eat too, have weapons and ammo, maintain the wear and tear of fighting vehicles, etc). This weakened ISIS will become more like a loose network of thugs and terrorists than an Islamic that it is now.  Then Iraq, Syria and the Kurds (who have now sold their captured oil to their ironic historic enemy of Turkey which is how the Kurds fund their fighting) can then finally have the opportunity to reclaim territory the next few months from ISIS although I don’t think full control will be possible but at least it will become something more like Pakistan’s federally administered tribal areas areas for terrorists than an actual Islamic state that it is now.

What do you guys think?

Read Full Post »

10599720_1530328533864209_8021399596401775723_n

It seems suddenly the world’s attention has shifted since last week to notice the horrific development in Iraq with ISIS.  Things has deteriorated for the worst the last four months and especially with this last week.

I think its important to see the bigger picture:  Its not just a bunch of terrorists guys running around as the “Junior Varsity” members of Al Qaeda as Obama called it in January 2014.  ISIS has begun making their Caliphate Islamic State.  They have taken over major cities, control oil centers and funding their state by selling them in the black market.  They have picked up the weapons left over from the fleeing Iraqi Government, picked up other weapons from other fighting groups in Syria and even controling a strategic dam.  Their Islamic Theocracy has begun with the violent cleansing of different Muslims, Christians and other minorities.

The following videos that are dispatches by Vice News gives us a little more perspective on the ground.  We can see that what we have here is really the breaking down of Iraq as a country, the fear that many had when the US was occupying Iraq.  The breakdown is now on sectarian lines.  These dispatches is fascinating in that you see every group mistrusting other groups and also how the Kurds are also taking this opportunity to advance their claims on territory in light of the Iraqi military running away.

As you watch these videos one must realize these were produced a few weeks ago and things have gotten worst since these were put online.  The Kurds are more involved with direct combat with ISIS.  ISIS has captured more grounds.  The Kurds have been running low on ammunition and there’s a major refugee crisis.  Two failing state (Iraq and Syria) are unable to put down ISIS and don’t forget the direct foreign involvement in weakening the two states that are trying to put them down (the US arm the FSA against Assad in Syria, etc).

I’m praying for the Christians and other minorities.  I’m praying that God will use this to bring people to Himself.  I’m praying for peace for the sake of people who have suffered so much.   I’m also praying for God’s justice and imprecatory prayers towards those who are in ISIS that will not repent.

 

Read Full Post »

It is unfortunate that Al Qaeda affiliates in Syria and Iraq has achieved great strides pushing forth an imperalistic Islam upon other Muslims and Christians.  Its also unfortunate that many in the West don’t understand much of these two organizations, Al Nusra and Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or better known as ISIS).  Apparently these two organizations aren’t getting along.

Here are two documentaries from earlier this year that gives a bit of perspective of  Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

The first is an incredible documentary by Vice who embedded with Al Nusra.

The second is the perspective of some who have quit the Free Syria Army and their encounter with ISIS.

It is frightening.  We need to be praying.

Read Full Post »

There are many Christians praying for Youcef Nadarkhani, an Iranian Christian pastor.

The latest news seems to suggest he might not be killed, but that do not mean his life will be easier.

According to ACLJ: http://aclj.org/iran/breaking-christian-pastor-death-sentence-overturned

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »