Christians are being killed because they are Christians.

Christians in Syria and Iraq and other countries around the world.

They have a choice and they are choosing Christ.

And as they are choosing Christ, they are fairly certain that it means

death or some other form of extreme persecution.

Do I believe the words of Isaiah 41:10?

 fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Does this apply to car accidents and cancer?

Or does it also apply to those who are facing imminent death because

they are Christians?

I am so very proud of them.

I am encouraged by their faith.

I wish I could be right there with them and look into their beautiful eyes and speak this encouragement into their lives.

I wish I could hug them and kiss them on their forehead.

I am reminded this evening of the Truth.

There is a God.

He is all-powerful.

He can stop anything that He desires to stop.

His ways are not our ways.

He has prepared a place in Heaven for those who belong to Him.

He has told us that we (his followers) will be persecuted.

This persecution has been happening for a long, long time, but it does appear to be on the increase.

May we be reminded that He has never promised that we would be comfortable here on earth.

I pray for my brothers and sisters in Christ; those who are suffering for His Name.

And if I am to be honest with you, most of the time I am not praying for their lives here on Earth to be protected.

To be a Christian and to be killed is not the most horrible thing.

To be [not a Christian] and to die is the most horrible thing.

So, I pray that my persecuted brothers and sisters have strength to endure what is before them. I pray that the Lord uses their individual lives to bring many to faith in Him.

The real tragedy is that souls are condemned and unless they are saved by grace, they will spend eternity separated from the God who created them.

Listen as Phil Wickham sings about the story that makes dead men live…