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Trials: Predicament or Privilege?

May 24th, 2010

JOHN SUMMERVILLE, TWR – GUEST BLOGGER. His straight black hair framed a rugged and tan skinned face.   A broad smile swept over him with a twinge of humility reflecting like a pool of water in his eyes.  “I wasn’t going to tell you my story,” started Chang, “But I will tell you.”

Chang shifted his feet and with enthusiasm explained in a gentle voice that he is a pastor of a house church in China.  “The punishment I received for running an unregistered house church in my province is harsh and I was sentenced to two years hard labor.”

“The local authorities came to my church and hauled me off to prison.  Working 12, 14 and even 16 hour days, 7 days a week, making bricks was exhausting.  In the summers, temperatures would become extreme getting as high as 113 degrees.  Prisoners would simply drop from heat exhaustion.  Unsympathetic guards dumped water over my fellow prisoners and forced them back to work.”

Then this broad shouldered man of only 5’3 pointed a thick finger upward finishing his story with this, “Thank the Lord my head is so hard.  They could not beat it out of me.”

They could not beat Jesus out of Chang.  No matter what the authorities did, they could not beat out of him his love for our Lord.

Are you looking at your trials as a predicament or a privilege?  Suffering is something I personally avoid.  Yet, this godly Chinese house church pastor regarded suffering for the Lord a privilege.

And “privilege” is a great word to use when we consider we have the opportunity to partner with committed Christians all throughout China.  Thank you for your gifts to support Chinese house church pastors like Chang. https://www.twr.org/campaign/rck-wjtl2010

John Summerville is the Director of Radio Station Partnerships.  TWR broadcasts Jesus in 220 languages utilizing AM, FM, shortwave and the Internet.

  1. Charis
    July 22nd, 2010 at 16:20 | #1

    I’ve always wondered how I would react if I was persecuted. I believe that if I ever denied Jesus I would not be able to live with myself. I’d most definately be praying. I can’t say exactly what I’d do but Jesus has given me everything so why shouldn’t I give all of me to Him? And there’s always reasons to rejoice. All of His promises will not let go of me. No matter where I am.
    I do not want to take freedom for granted. Chang is a perfect example of the strength I want. Jesus went through so much more for all of us. These accounts are great reminders.

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