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Pressing into Jesus in lockdown

Dear friends,

Thank you for standing with your persecuted church family this year. We are so grateful, and so are they. They pray for us as we do for them. Knowing we stand together as the global family of Jesus Christ brings huge strength to us all.

As we go into a second lockdown in England, and continue to see restrictions in other parts of the UK and Ireland, I asked the team here at Open Doors to pray about how we could encourage you through this season. I believe God is saying: KEEP GOING AND PRESS IN.

We can take heart and learn a lot from our persecuted church family about God’s grace and love in difficult times:

When she was imprisoned in a North Korean camp, the Lord told Hea Woo to rejoice when there was a ferocious thunderstorm – it meant she could praise God at the top of her lungs!

Praise is the weapon we can use against despair.

When Mojtaba was in solitary confinement in an Iranian prison, he cried out to the Lord: “Why have you forsaken me?” And he had the most beautiful vision of Jesus – telling him that Mojtaba belonged to Him and He loved him.

Prayer is the weapon we can use against isolation.

Brother Andrew smuggled Bibles into Communist Eastern Europe, and ever since then, courageous Open Doors partners have taken Bibles to persecuted believers – taking great risks to provide the glorious truth of Scripture.

God’s word is the weapon we can use against fear.

Rebecca, Eti and Ratna were imprisoned in Indonesia for five years, but on the first day the Lord spoke to them about serving the other prisoners. When they were released they went straight back in the following Monday to disciple the prisoners who had come to faith through them.

Our witness for Christ is salt and light in places that are dark, broken and tasteless.

Praise, prayer, the power of God’s word, and our witness – these are the ways we press into Jesus. So, KEEP GOING AND PRESS IN.

May the Lord bless you and protect you during this time. Amen.

Henrietta Blyth
CEO, Open Doors UK & Ireland