THAILAND: Some Jungles Have Wifi

Source: Commnet Media

The Bangkok Metro Region is home to nearly 15 million people. Less than one percent of them follow Jesus. That means millions may not even know a single believer. Not one. It’s our prayer to see that change. It’s going to take a ridiculous amount of work in a place that’s hotter, harder, and more complex that you can imagine. It’s not going to be easy.

» Thanks for praying and mobilizing for Thailand. See more resources from Commnet, including four more new videos about ministry in Thailand. Any you use in your own context?

NORTH KOREA: Government Agent Accepted Jesus on His Deathbed

Source: ASSIST News Service, July 25, 2017

“Like so many Christian families, our family was banished in the 1950s to a remote village,” Kim Sang-Hwa told Open Doors. “They continued to hide their faith from the outside world.”

“When I was 12, I accidentally found a Bible my parents had hidden in their closet. I don’t know why, but I started to feel inside the cabinet with my hand, pulled out a book and began to read.”

“To me all those stories and ideas were so interesting. I also read the Bible for myself. But I realized it was dangerous. My father always emphasized not to share anything with anyone else. Then he would start to pray in whispers, almost inaudible. ‘Father, help the North Korean people to seek your Kingdom first’.”

She learned that her father met people in secret location, as part of the underground church. “Many children of believers came to that location too and learned the Bible. We prayed together.”

But Sang-Hwa and her parents were unaware that government agents had infiltrated the underground meetings. “Among the people visiting the secret meetings were some non-believers too, even spies,” she told Open Doors.

When one of those visitors was dying, her father went to see him on his deathbed. The man confessed his duplicitous intentions: “I know everything about you, your family and your faith. I was a spy and ordered to watch you,” he told her startled father.

Amazingly, the government agent never turned them in. As he observed the believers praying and singing, his heart softened toward them.

“You are a good man. I never told anyone you were a Christian,” he told Sang-Hwa’s father. “Tell me how I can become a Christian too.”

» Read full story and the more complete report from Open Doors.

» See another story from Open Doors, this one from Myanmar: How an Ex-Soldier Braved Demons to Bring a Buddhist Village to Christ.

MALAWI: Saladin’s Struggle

Source: FEBC, July 31, 2017

Saladin is from Malawi in Africa, and had been a Muslim for over 38 years before becoming a Christian. Saladin held a number of positions in local Muslim leadership. He was the secretary of the Muslim council in the eastern region of Malawi, and also worked as the vice president of the Muslim Teachers Union.

While in these positions and practicing his Muslim faith, he kneeled down to pray late one evening.

“As I was doing this I saw a vision. I saw Muslims, a large multitude of Muslims, who were weeping, and I saw my brother and I saw my uncle, and they were filled with sorrow. I saw that they were crying, saying, ‘Saladin, please rescue us!’”

Saladin woke up and wrote down what he’d just dreamt about, and from there, he left Islam in search of the truth. Soon he found Jesus Christ and accepted him as his Lord and Savior.

“After I accepted Jesus Christ, I was rejected by my family and treated as an outcast. The Muslim Teachers Union told me I was going to be killed according to Sharia law. I told them that I wasn’t there to attack them, I am here to preach about the one true, living God.”

It continues to be a struggle for Saladin, yet he now goes door to door telling people to accept Jesus Christ. He has been threatened and scorned, yet God has protected him.

» Read full story and more news from FEBC, a radio broadcasting ministry.

» For another article about God raising up and sending out messengers, see The Secret Lives of Chinese Missionaries in Northern Iraq (South China Morning Post).

GREECE: Turning Hearts of Stone to Hearts of Flesh

Source: Beyond, August 2017

There was an Afghan man that would come to an Athens refugee center regularly named Ali. He was devout in his faith and threatened anyone he saw that showed interest in Christ or asked questions.

In January, Ali gathered a group of Afghan men and surrounded an Iranian believer, Fardin, and said he needed to come do namaz (Muslim prayers) or they were going to kill him. Thankfully some people came and broke it all up before they could hurt him.

A few months after this incident Ali had an extended family member that really needed help. We provided Ali with the resources necessary to help. [Later] he said with tears in his eyes, “You covered my shame by allowing me to be involved and you restored my honor. I will never forget this.” After saying that he left.

Last month, Fardin was leaving our refugee center and heard Ali shout, “Hey, Fardin. Come over here.” Fardin said his stomach dropped and he wondered if he was going to get beaten again, and he even asked God why he let Ali find him again. When Fardin approached Ali, Ali threw his arms around him and called him brother. Ali said, “We are brothers now! I believe. I love Jesus!” Fardin stood there with his mouth opened, shocked at what had just happened. Ali said, “Why do you look so surprised? God is big! I believe!”

We serve a God that is actively turning hearts of stone to hearts of flesh.

» Read full story, followed by one about new believers starting house churches within a week of coming to know the Lord.

SAUDI ARABIA: Reaching Mecca

Source: Arab World Media, July 31, 2017

At the end of August, millions of Muslims from across the globe will head to Mecca in Saudi Arabia. They will be taking part in the Hajj, which is one of the five pillars of Islam and a pilgrimage every Muslim must strive to make at least once in their lifetime.

You probably know that only Muslims may enter the city of Mecca, the holiest site in Islam and the central focus of the Hajj. Because of this ruling, it would be natural to assume that those who live within Mecca’s walls are impossible to reach.

Saudi Arabia is a closed country in many senses, but clearly not all of its people are closed to the gospel. From January to June 2017, Saudi nationals were the fourth highest nationality visiting our ministry website. During this period we had 1,060 interactions with individuals in Saudi. Of these, 295 were in active contact with one of our responders and 14 made professions of faith.

Praise God that even in Islam’s birthplace there is hope and longing for Jesus Christ.

» Read full story.

» For more about the Hajj and how to pray, visit the Pray4Saudi website.

BIBLE STUDY: Mission of God Video Series

Mission of GodSource: North Carolina Baptists

Want to develop—or help someone else develop—a growing biblical theology of missions?

Check out the new, free Mission of God Bible study which walks through Scripture, showing God’s desire to see all people groups come to faith in Jesus Christ.

The study includes six video sessions, 30-40 minutes in length, with Devon Griffin, assistant professor at Palm Beach Atlantic University, with downloadable guides for leader and participants. The creators suggest it be used with small groups, classes, or personal study.

» Learn more or access materials.

» See also the free, 30-day YouVersion Bible reading plan on Completing the Great Commission from Frontiers. Looking for something on paper? God’s Heart for the Nations, by Jeff Lewis, and Missions: God’s Heart for the World, by Paul Borthwick, are good choices.

BOOKLET: Scripture Prayers for the Peoples of the World

Source: Reverb Network

Looking for a tool to help you lead others in praying for the nations? Scripture Prayers for the Peoples of the World is a 24-page full-color booklet of scriptures to pray for any people group. You can get the PDF version for free in English, Russian, or Ukranian. Order printed copies for US$5 each with discounts of up to 50 percent for bulk purchases.

» Learn more or download the resource. No registration required.

» See also Justin Long’s UPG Prayer Guide Index.

BOOK: Mission Mobilization Novel

Source: 2414 Ventures

We just learned Steve Smith’s unique, Great-Commission-focused, end-times thriller, Hastening, is available for free or, if you can afford it, at cost  to anyone who will pass on five or more copies to mobilize churches, friends and family. They need to reduce stock! We hear that Hastening has helped many believers get God’s heart for finishing the Great Commission.

» Interested? Contact Josh Smith. Please provide your mailing address and the number of copies you would likeIf you can afford to pay $2.75 each, that will cover all the costs of production, storage and shipping. And if you can’t afford this, let them know what you can afford and they will send you copies if some are still left.