"I have purposely included six months of 'difficult' photos in the 2012 calendar to accurately reflect our work. We ask that you pray for these children and for the many others they represent. The photos for some months may prompt readers to close the calendar and put it in their desk drawer. But these are the faithful families we serve. We cannot ignore their suffering and their faith."
-Tom White, President of Voice of the Martyrs (reflecting on the 2012 VOM prayer calendar)
I loved the ending of this quote from Tom White, president of Voice of the Martyrs. We cannot ignore the persecuted church's suffering, and likewise, their faith. How often do we ignore the suffering in our own lives and the lives of those around us? It is admittedly hard to face at times, but ignoring does an injustice to those hurting and an injustice to the God who is using their suffering and faith for His glory.
The persecuted church is happening today, with unimaginable stories coming out of restricted nations. We can stick our heads in the sand if we think that easier, but in so doing, we only marginalize their great suffering for the Lord in order to leave us comfortable and useless in today's worldwide church. I don't know about you, but I want to be counted with these tremendous saints one day. I do not want to be known as a Western Christian who sat happily, while my brothers and sisters in Christ received many eternal crowns, without my voice and love to support them in their incredible pilgrimage.
I intended to put a link to the 2012 VOM prayer calendar, in case you wanted to support VOM by purchasing one. I couldn't find it available yet on their website, but will let you know when it becomes available. Each day of the year has a restricted nation listed with a way you can specifically pray for the Christians there (including the children).
Also, the free offer for Richard Wurmbrand's book, Tortured for Christ, is still available (you can send complimentary copies to your friends or family, too). I have read the book and recommend it. Many sections are hard to read, yet eye-opening and beneficial for us to hear in the West.