Most of you, who’ve come across this blog, don’t even need a reminder, but here, once again, are some ministries offering opportunities to help show the love of Christ. Featured is an article reprinted with permission. Let’s persevere in prayers of faith, believing for answers to prayer–even the miraculous–over places which are experiencing severe adversities and war….
“Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’
“Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.'” Matthew 25:34-40
and others of which you’re aware….
The following comes from the Slavic Gospel Association:
It has been said that children are windows into the souls of their parents. But children can also be windows into all that is occurring around them. Children are quite observant of their surroundings, and their view of the world has not yet been infused with the countless considerations of politics and social issues along with concerns about health, finances, and a future. They simply see the world for what it is to them. When children gathered around Jesus they saw His goodness, kindness, and love and they listened intently to His teaching. They had no reason to believe otherwise, and their simple faith was on display. Jesus commented on their unfettered faith that “to such belongs the kingdom of God” (Mark 10:14). In the same way children also react to the violence and evil in this world. They don’t understand it, cannot rationalize or justify it, and only see it simply as hideous, crying out in pain and fear when they see it. So it is to a seven-year-old little girl in eastern Ukraine that we turn.
Vlad is a faithful pastor who delivers food and the Gospel to many in the war torn villages in eastern Ukraine. As we have shared before, these villages already suffer from the ongoing conflict (since 2014) and now suffer even more with the wider-scale war. Vlad handed little Polina a loaf of bread that was like gold to her, and she sang a song for him of her own creation. Polina sang, “I am appealing to adults to stop the war, and I will color the spring for you with bright colors—the sun smiling in the sky. I will stop crying, and will fear no more. Where the war goes on, one cannot play games, or gather flowers. And I can’t understand why innocent children die where the war goes on.” Simply there is the beauty of life and the ugliness of that which destroys life.
And there in the midst of the suffering was Vlad—bringing Polina and her mother bread, along with groceries and the Gospel. Pastor Vlad himself had been captured in 2014 and tortured, and he captured her song on video with others standing nearby. After a recent trip to Polina’s village, Vlad added, “Today was very scary for us. People live in fear day and night. People die and it seems like life is worth nothing. This war brings great grief, very great, but also our prayers to God. Lord please stop them!” Vlad and Polina both do not know what the outcome will be. But both pray for a day with no more fear and no more tears. And therefore, groceries and the Gospel continue, for the ultimate day in which the tears stop and the fear is gone in heaven. With childlike faith in Jesus, we can be certain that day will come.
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 (Isaiah 41:10).
Israel was experiencing the oppressive war machine of their enemies. They were dismayed, disillusioned, and dejected. They were fearful of what may yet happen. Into this context, God speaks to them through His prophet Isaiah. God, through Isaiah, assures them He is with them, He will strengthen them, help them, and uphold them in the difficulties produced by war. With God is hope and the message of hope. The hope begins by knowing the one true God. The one true God is known only through God the Son, Jesus Christ. Once genuine hope is known in Jesus Christ, the great promises and assurances of God are directed toward those who place their trust in Him. Even though Israel was experiencing the tragedy of war, God was providing them with hope through His faithful servant.
It is such a blessing to read of Pastor Vlad who brings the message of hope, not a general message of hope, but the very specific message of hope found in God alone. While ministering with groceries to those who desperately need food, he speaks of the hope that is uniquely found in God through Jesus Christ. He speaks of hope that ministers to the depths of the soul, to all who turn in repentance toward God and faith in Christ Jesus. Those who embrace the message of the Gospel, by faith, come to know the reality that God indeed is their God, that He will strengthen them and uphold them while living in the ugly and tragic reality of war. We are grateful for each one who prays for the faithful servants in Ukraine and Russia, and for the hope of the Gospel to be realized in the lives of many who hear the Gospel.
Please Pray Today:
- Praise God that through His Son Jesus, there will be a day that all fear will be gone and there will be no more tears for those who believe in Him.
- Pray for the little children like Polina who suffer greatly in Ukraine under this brutal conflict.
- Pray for faithful believers who, at the risk of their own lives, race into the conflict to bring the hope of Jesus Christ and aid to those suffering—especially the children.