Tonight I experienced something that will stick with me forever. Even though our experience was just a learning experience, and no where near what people actually go through. We went through a mock experience of the underground church. Beginning at one place and trying to get to our destination. Our church. The place that was forbidden. Christians are daily prosecuted for their beliefs and this is the only way some Christians can get together as a community to talk about our Father.
We went through a field, hiding in the bushes from the “guards”, even though we knew we were fine it still crossed my mind that to some people in this situation they are in fear. They have put all their trust in God that he will protect them, just to come face to face with somebody who is going to kill them for what they believe.
We made it in and out of bushes, running from here to there, ducking and lying down just not to be seen. We were there at the barn. Our church. But it had been found. This wasn’t just a little joke. There are people who’s churches get prosecuted. Who’s leaders are taken. And what do they do? Well we were lead to another location. We put our trust in somebody we didn’t quite know was there to help us to lead us to our new destination. We backtracked, we prayed, and I noticed a few things: the entire time the moon lit our path, each tree/bush/field of grass God made was used, we put our trust in God that he would just get us there without getting prosecuted.
We took our final run. We made it. To our boxcar church in the middle of a field. For some this is what it may be like. I’m not sure. We were the first of the groups to arrive. Waiting for the groups to arrive. Arrive to a church where we could worship our Father, something that wasn’t just a slap on the wrist for doing, but facing death if caught. I began to ask Jon questions: how would people know who to follow, how would they now who to trust, how would somebody new come about getting into one of these churches. I wish I could just know how God does it. Even the people who are told not to believe in God do. They challenge what they are told because they feel a stronger tug on their hearts telling them to follow God.
We all had arrived. Safely. (yes I know, still just a mock situation, but imagine, just imagine it being the real deal). The thought that there are people at this time making this trek. They are going someplace so they can live out their faith without being prosecuted. This made me think. They are going someplace so they can live out their faith so that they won’t be prosecuted? So that they won’t be prosecuted?! They are still trying to learn more about our God. They are risking their lives. Where I have the opportunity to pull out my bible whenever, wherever. But I don’t take advantage of it. They have to fight to keep their faith going, yet I so often give up on mine even though it is so much easier to live out and learn about.
I don’t know what else to say. I have a lot going through my head right now. I am just in awe with how God shows his love for us.
“his love never fails, never gives up, never runs out on me.”
Father, into your hands I commit my spirit. Thank you for all you have blessed me with. Thank you for the freedom I have. Thank you for all the compassion you show.