| THE ANGELS HAVE ARRIVED|
THE ANGELS HAVE ARRIVED
Until the fall of President Ceausescu in 1989, Romania was one of the most important countries for Open Doors Bible delivery ministry. We supplied countless Bibles and booksespecially to Pastor Paul Negrut of the Baptist Church in Oradea. He later wrote to Brother Andrew and said, In a divinely appointed network, we would receive a small number of Bibles to be distributed quietly and carefully among believers. Although the food supply was scarce, the Romanian believers treasured the Word of God more than anything in this world. When asked to choose between food parcels and Bibles, every Romanian that I know asked for Bibles.
What Open Doors has done for us is better described in the words of a Christian lady who whispered to her husband, The angels have arrived. Their little daughter heard those words and rushed into the next room to see the angels. To her surprise and disappointment, the angels she saw were two bearded men casually dressed. The little girl had great difficulty reconciling her imagination about angels with the reality she saw. As strange as this looked for that little girl, this is the spiritual reality; for us you have been Gods angels that brought us the Bread of Life.
Previously, Open Doors knew that the little Baptist church of Oradea was likely to be knocked down at any moment as it was located in a slum clearance area. A new building was badly needed, because the little church was nowhere near big enough to accommodate all the believers anymore. However, the possibility of the church being granted planning permission for a new building was very slim.
At the beginning of 2005, we found that the little church still had not been pulled down, but it was no longer in use. A beautiful, big, new church had taken its placea gigantic church, which seats 3,000. Every Sunday it is completely full, as it was in the past, right into the aisles. During the week, Bible studies are held for about 400 teenagers and young adults.
Paul Negruts church is heavily involved in evangelism and missionary work, reaching to Central Asia, Russia and the Middle East. They even have a theological university where pastors receive training. Students come not only from Romania but also from the missionary fields. One student is from Yakutsk (Siberia).
But not all believers in Romania are getting on well. Pastor Paul says, In my experience, 95% of the believers who faced the test of external persecution passed it, while 95% of those who now face the test of prosperity fail it.
But Pastor Paul also quickly analyzed the situation of persecution well; It is not persecution itself but the lessons learned under persecution that make and keep the church and an individual believer strong in the Lord
what makes the difference is how we respond to persecution and how we respond to freedom.
Today I will prepare myself for the hard assignments in responding biblically to challenges.
Pray for Romania that God will revive His church to stand strong in the face of prosperity.
Open Doors Devotional 11.14.11
| 2011/11/14 9:29||Profile|
| Re: THE ANGELS HAVE ARRIVED|
Thanks for sharing that post. A family member of mine returned recently from a month of ministry in former Communist Soviet bloc nations. The Christian and local church leaders they were working with shared the same story with them. They said before the fall of the Soviet Empire they were greatly persecuted... but also very strong in the Lord. They shared that The Holy Spirit would visit them strongly and do supernatural miracles and manifestations in their midst on a consistent basis. Often they were very desperate as it was either received a miracle from God or die. That led to a strong and vibrant fellowship of believers there.
However, they also shared that since the fall of the Communist Bloc nations, and the entrance of religious freedoms, that the power of God was greatly diminished in their midst. Those who had been greatly involved in Christian leadership before religious freedoms were extended said they see a tremendous difference .... and it concerns them greatly. In their eyes the last 10 years have specifically shown a marked decrease in the presence and power of God in their midst. They echoed almost exactly what you have posted.... they have greater freedom and more prosperity now. At least for their neck of the woods they were gaining much prosperity.... and losing much power.
We pray for them. Seeing and hearing the words of those involved first hand creates a vision and passion within you for them. I hope to bring a few of those nations Christian leaders that we connected with over to us stateside in the next few years. First to bless them, then for the people in our fellowship to then gain a vision, and to additionally stir the fire and passion in my own heart.
Thanks again for sharing your post... it has stirred my heart today.
Blessings to you Joyful_Heart!
| 2011/11/14 10:35||Profile|
| Re: Solomon101|
It's sad. What the devil could not do through the persecution of the State, he easily accomplishes through friendship with the State. Just like what was done to the early Church.
We need to "steel" ourselves to the world system, not only to its "wrath", but especially to its "comfort" as well. Makes me think of Paul's counsel to Timothy:
"Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.
And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.
Thou therefore ENDURE HARDNESS, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.
No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.
And if a man also strive for masteries, yet is he not crowned, except he strive lawfully." II Timothy 2:3-5
Whereever we may find ourselves, whether a Brother or a Sister, we are "on-duty"; we are on a "mission" for God.
And thank you for Posting this Joyful_Heart,
| 2011/11/14 10:50||Profile|