“More persecution, more growth. That is the history of the Church.” 

Pastor Samuel Lamb, a Chinese Christian who was imprisoned for his faith for 21 years, grins with a toothy smile as he let’s you in on the reality of Christian persecution. “More growth,” he repeats, and then he is silent, contemplating his years of suffering; thinking of the church he pastors where thousands of people are getting saved and discipled; considering of the promise of Jesus:

“Since they persecuted me, naturally they will persecute you.” 

We are experiencing Jesus’s precious promise of persecution here at Within Reach Global. Many of our Bible training centers are targets for the authorities, and so we have to operate underground.

Persecution in China climbs for seventh year.

Persecution is especially potent at Bamboo center, where believers in the region have dealt with opposition of their faith since the very start.

But let’s pause for a moment. Every time we mention Bamboo center, we feel led to remind you how this name came about. We came up with relevant and captive names for each of our training center so as not to give away exact locations. Instead we chose a name that represents that center. “They bend like bamboo, but do not break.” That perfectly describes the Christians in Bamboo, undergoing heavy persecution.

“They bend like bamboo, but do not break.”

Last year, persecution was especially heavy handed. A local Muslim learned of Bamboo’s church and outreach program, and brought the local police to demolish the church. Our underground missionaries underwent long interrogations, and were charged to vacate the building where we held our meetings and trainings.

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Big Brother’s eyes kept watching, and just two weeks ago, more persecution came. Again, Bamboo was forced to relocate.

“Living on the run is normal for us,” Brother Yin told us. “We are used to this. It makes life and ministry exciting!”

“Living on the run is normal for us,” Brother Yin told us. “We are used to this. It makes life and ministry exciting!”

Wow! Now that’s a powerful response to Christian persecution!

We just found a new location where we can resume our meetings and outreach, and are praying that we will be able to operate covertly.

Please pray God’s hand of blessing and safety over everyone involved at Bamboo. Pray that though the pressures of persecution may cause them to bend, they will bend their knees in prayer, and never break.

 

See this post at withinreachglobal.org

David Joannes
Founder/President at Within Reach Global
David Joannes is the co-founder and president of Within Reach Global, Inc, which serves the advance of the Gospel in some of Southeast Asia’s most difficult places. He is the author of The Space Between Memories: Recollections from a 21st Century Missionary. David has a love for language, culture, and creative writing, and for the last 20 years, he has witnessed God’s Kingdom established in forgotten parts of the globe. David lives in Chiang Mai, Thailand, with his wife, Lorna, and their daughter, Cara.
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