I have a question specifically for Christians living in the United States, have you faced persecution for your faith in Jesus Christ? It is highly likely that a majority of Christians would answer no to this question. When you ask this question in many other countries the answer is a resounding yes. The United States is still a country where its citizens still have the liberty to express their faith. This freedom should not be taken for granted because it is not available to everyone around the world.
According to Open Doors USA Christian persecution is a reality that many Christians face around the world each day.
“In just the last year*, there have been:
- Over 360 million Christians living in places where they experience high levels of persecution and discrimination
- 5,898 Christians killed for their faith
- 5,110 churches and other Christian buildings attacked
- 4,765 believers detained without trial, arrested, sentenced or imprisoned ”
– Source: Open Doors USA
Today I want to point your attention to just one young woman who is facing persecution for her Christian faith. Her name is leah Sharibu.Leah was 14 years old when she was kidnapped along with 109 other girls from their school in Nigeria by members of the Boko Haram terrorist group. This occurred on February 19, 2018 and she is still being held captive as of today may 19, 2022. She was given a chance to be free if she would deny her faith in Jesus Christ. Boko Haram is known for targeting Christian girls.
leah refused to deny her faith in jesus Christ and was kept as a slave while the other girls were set free. Leah’s story is just one of many examples of Christian persecution occuring around the world. Many people are shunned by family, fired from their job, kidnapped, beaten or even killed for their Christian faith. Learn more about this human rights issue here and find out some ways you can help here.
All Christians must be ready to face persecution. Those who live in the United States will not escape. Read Hebrews 11:32-40 here and you will find that believers have always faced persecution. God does not always stop persecution from occurring because it is how we grow, but he will be there each step of the way. God is with you, stay strong and trust him.