Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Remember Their Chains

Oscar had been whining and crying for a few hours I would say. He'd been chained up out back and no one had come out to check on him. You see, Oscar's the dog in the back of us, and when I went down to the fence, I saw that his chain had gotten wrapped around a bundle of sticks that were nearby, and he was "stuck" in a particular spot. I have to be honest; I have a lot of trouble with people who leave a dog tied up for long periods without at least making sure all is well. Especially when he's howling like this one was. But don't go by me, because I'm a little too sentimental about animals. I feel sorry for any one of them who has a plight. So I took a walk around the block (which I needed anyway) and told one of Oscar's young owners, who was playing ball in the street, to go rescue him. He was happy to do so; you know how young boys are when they're playing--he didn't mean any harm, he had just forgotten about him.

...And most of the brethren in the Lord, having become confident by my chains, are much more bold to speak the word without fear. Phil. 1:14

Actually, the dog in the back of me doesn't have it that bad. They came and got him and all is quiet now. His sufferings are not as bad as they are for many Christians throughtout the world. For some strange reason, his whines made me think of our persecuted brethren and my thoughts went to the words I've often read in the VOM newsletter: "Remember their chains." This week, my thoughts go to Christians in India, after reading the article at the Christian Persecution Blog about their courage and faithfulness to Christ amidst intense sufferings. Reading such things pricks me; hopefully, it will be a goad for all of us. Perhaps it will give us an increased determination to glorify our Lord where we are. Sometimes I'm sad that I'm called to do so little for Him. But praying for our brothers and sisters in India, Pakistan, Malaysia, and other places is something important we can do. Some have recently been beheaded and had their throats slit for loving Jesus. This is real, folks. And I for one am determined not to forget about what it means to take up our cross and follow Him. So basically I'm saying that for me Oscar was another reminder of those who are in chains.


Cami said...

Amen!! You know, my grandfather was a pastor for sixty-five years, but he always wanted to be a missionary, to do "more." He got his chance once, in his dream missionary spot: Africa. But it was cut short when news came that my uncle had been seriously injured. My grandfather never went back to the missionfield. And he continued to grieve that he couldn't do "more." But, oh, was my grandfather an intercessor! You are so right, along with the need to remember what it means to pick up our own cross daily and follow Jesus, we must never forget the importance of intercession!!!

Maxine said...

Cami, I loved hearing about your grandfather. I wish I could have met him! I'm glad he got to go for a little while and thank God we can always have the ministry of intercession.

Francine said...

Maxine ... what a wonderful post. I love the allegory between the dog and the chains many Christians are in. That can go even further ... there are so many chained in bondage to the world. And, I too, have compassion for animals.

Welcome to the blog. I knew the first time I visited here that you would be a great member of our group.

Tanya said...

Maxine: Thank you for this! It's a wonderful post; a timeless reminder. I recently finished reading "Safely Home" by Randy Alcorn. It's a novel about the persecuted church. If you've not yet read it, I highly recommend you do. It's quite powerful --- and all proceeds go to benefit believers in restricted areas. It's a win-win. :)