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Hillary Clinton: Bible's Prodigal Son Parable Is My Lifeline

Christian Post - Bible - Thu, 02/04/2016 - 9:57am
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has said that throughout the difficulties she has faced in her life, it is the parable of the prodigal son as found in the Bible that became her "lifeline."
Categories: Christian Post

Open Doors launches new social media project

Mission Network News - Thu, 02/04/2016 - 5:00am
Middle East (MNN/OD) -- In the digital age, new ways of sharing the Gospel keep cropping up, but one that seems consistent is social media.

(Photo courtesy Sean MacEntee via Flickr)

Open Doors USA is initiating the social media project, I Share Life – Young Christians Online, in the Middle East. The goal is to facilitate Christian youth from Iraq, Syria and Lebanon to use their online presence to share the love of Christ online in the Arab world. Starting in 2016, a group of about 6 teenagers will start publishing posts on their own channels such as Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube in which they witness in a personal way about how Christ works in their lives. Their hope is that these posts will inspire others to live with Him as well and start sharing their stories. To help, Open Doors will be providing equipment and training for the youth involved as well as offering them a chance to grow in faith. According to *Alex, an Open Doors worker involved in the project, two coaches will be meeting the teens regularly and will join them in a discipleship journey. “That is really one of the strong points of this project,” says Alex. Recently, the kickoff for I Share Life took place in a village in the Middle East with participating Christian youth originating from Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon. After reading the Bible and praying together, they thought about the best ways to share God’s love on social media in the Arab world. Social media is a great platform for doing so since posts are easily “Shared” and “Liked” across country borders and potentially have a huge impact.

(Photo courtesy of Jason Howie via Flickr)

But rather than telling these youths what to do, Open Doors is putting them in charge. “It is very easy to speak about youth and organize all kinds of activities for them. In this project we want to put them in the driver’s seat, to facilitate and challenge them to be present with their own story,” says Alex. “They are far more spot-on to the things that are relevant for their lives than we are.” The youth involved in the kickoff decided to formulate their vision in terms of creating hope, speaking about God, and sharing life online. Soon they will be posting their first I Share Life posts on their own social media. As a first step, they all are thinking of one person they know that they want to show God’s love to. “We will start by focusing on this person that is close to our hearts and then grow from there,” says *Seif, one of the youth present. “I chose to focus on one of my relatives in Syria. The only way for me to stay connected with them is through Facebook and WhatsApp.’’ After starting the project, the teenagers and their coaches will monitor the posts and the responses to see what lessons can be drawn for the future. In the meantime, if you would, please pray for the success of this project, the safety of the participants, and for the work of the Gospel. * Names changed for security reasons
Categories: Mission Network News

Answered prayer in Egypt

Mission Network News - Thu, 02/04/2016 - 5:00am

(Photo courtesy SAT-7)

Egypt (MNN/SAT7) -- Egypt: a country trying to keep the lid on turmoil threatening to boil over at any second. Given the anticipated uproar surrounding the 5th anniversary of the Arab Spring uprising, the government began cracking down months ago on anyone they perceived to be dissenters: raiding offices, collecting equipment, and arresting people. On October 10, 2015, the SAT-7 Cairo studios were raided. The question: was this connected to the official crackdown? As it is with any speculation, suggested theories could be debunked but then resurface as different conjecture. SAT-7 USA president Dr. Rex Rogers demurred on the subject, redirecting to the facts at hand. In the October raid, censorship police removed much of the studio’s production equipment, including cameras and all of the computers used for editing. Executive Director Farid Samir was also temporarily detained over "licensing" issues. Rogers says, “They issued three legal challenges, all of which we’ve been able to demonstrate are not valid.” The problem is that when authorities took the equipment, they made it so the SAT-7 team couldn’t function. “We’ve had to shut down our live programming," says Rogers. "We had $100,000 worth of equipment that was not central to it [live programming], and I might add, along with the equipment, on...one of those drives were unedited programs that had been filmed but were not backed up because they were still in the editing phase.” However, the SAT-7 ARABIC and SAT-7 KIDS channels screened live programs from the SAT-7 Lebanon studio and programs produced by SAT-7 partners as normal.

(Photo courtesy SAT-7)

After three months of downtime, police returned all confiscated equipment to the SAT-7 studio in Cairo. It’s a relief, but there are still concerns, says Rogers. First, “We’re still in the process of trying to determine just what shape it’s in [the equipment]: is it all okay? Is it accessible? Can it be rebooted?” Second, the case "has not been completely dismissed, so what remains open is actually the charge against the executive director.” The latest on that, says Rogers: “Just to boil it down and say that his name was confused with someone in the southern part of the country. Whatever the crime supposedly was had nothing to do with our man. But whether that was invented, or that was a mistake somehow (bureaucracy), we don’t know. Thankfully, that’s been demonstrated to be erroneous.” As the team regathers to get things moving toward full function, the chilling effect could come into play. A chilling effect describes a situation in which rights, like free speech, are threatened by the possible negative results of exercising these rights. The effect is to silence free speech. Rogers agrees. “Sometimes it’s not what is done, but the threat of what could be done. So, something like this happens, and it’s really never followed through with, but it’s the implied statement [from the government] that 'We could do more.’”

(Photo courtesy SAT-7/Executive Director SAT-7 Cairo, Farid Samir)

To that end, pray for wisdom, creativity, and boldness, Rogers urges. “We’re still not certain that we can do live program filming in our studios as we’ve done before, so that’s a prayer request. Another prayer request, of course, is to have all of the charges that are erroneous completely dismissed against our executive director, and then be able to return to full functioning.” Samir, in a press release, said, “During the last few weeks, our spiritual muscles were stretched. But the support of the worldwide Church kept us encouraged.” SAT-7 is a Christian satellite television ministry to the Middle East and North Africa. The ministry has five channels (SAT-7 ARABIC, SAT-7 PARS, SAT-7 KIDS, SAT-7 PLUS and SAT-7 TÜRK). Their goal is to show viewers God’s love, give local churches a satellite TV platform to educate and encourage their communities, and to build bridges with the non-Christian majority without compromising the truth of God’s Word.
Categories: Mission Network News

‘Source of Hope’ school continues to grow

Mission Network News - Thu, 02/04/2016 - 5:00am
Guatemala (MNN/Kids Alive) -- In a country known for its poverty and human trafficking stands Source of Hope, a school born out of a partnership between Kids Alive International and a local church, Iglesia Galilea.

(Image courtesy Kids Alive)

The school is located in the town of Zapote--an area where food, work, and education are in short supply. Children at Source of Hope receive a solid education, health services, and a nutrition-based meal program--often the only real meals they receive each day. The school began 10 years ago with 40 preschoolers and continues to grow. For the first time in its history, 10 students are continuing on to high school at Source of Hope. Through many of Kids Alive’s Guatemalan programs, including Source of Hope, students, kids, and their families are being introduced to Christ, in some cases for the first time. Sharing Christ is a key to the curriculum. So when kids attend Source of Hope, they’re not just getting an education, they’re also getting a chance to meet Jesus. And you can help! Here’s how. Helping in Guatemala
  • Sponsor a child
  • Donate to “Source of Hope”
  • Support ministries in Guatemala
  • Pray for God’s grace and love to wash over these people. Pray for people to come to know Christ and for lives to be transformed
See what else Kids Alive is doing.
Categories: Mission Network News

Fighting human trafficking: Priceless

Mission Network News - Thu, 02/04/2016 - 5:00am
Latin America (MNN) -- The 2016 Olympic Games will carry on in Brazil this August, despite a widespread outbreak of the Zika virus.

(Graphic courtesy PricelessCube.com)

Officials are taking extra measures to prevent contamination, but the Games carry with them a threat of another insidious epidemic: human trafficking. Trafficking and exploitation are ugly topics, but they're reality for 27 million people worldwide. Half of those victims are kids. You can help protect the innocent by fighting human trafficking, both in Latin America and abroad. "Children are being forced to work; they're being forced to have sex with up to 30 people in one day, or one evening," shares E3 Partners' Katie Brown, the Coordinator for E3's Priceless ministry. "I really think that God has a huge heart for this, and it's something we can take a stand against." Human trafficking & Rio 2016

(Wikipedia)

As explained here, "Where there is tourism, there is also sex tourism." Exploitation was a major concern in the lead-up to 2014's FIFA World Cup in Brazil. The same concerns remain today, as Brazil will be hosting the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro this August. Brown says E3's Priceless cube is an effective tool for fighting human trafficking before it even starts. Learn how the Priceless cube works here. "It works with law enforcement; it works with local churches, and it really is an entry-point to their [at-risk individuals'] lives, and eventually to getting to share the Gospel with them." 4 ways to start fighting human trafficking If God places it on your heart to protect the innocent, E3 shares four ways you can put that desire into action. PRAY
  • Ask the Lord what He's calling you to do, now that you know.
  • Pray for the literal and eternal freedom for anyone who's trapped in human trafficking.
  • Pray that believers in Latin America will start fighting human trafficking in their communities.
LEARN Connect with E3 here to discover how they are fighting human trafficking. GIVE

The Priceless Cube (Photo courtesy E3 Resources)

E3's Priceless ministry equips churches around the world to prevent human trafficking. Using the Priceless cube, E3 seeks to educate those who are at risk, draw them out of their desperation, and bring them the hope of Jesus. With your help, E3 can accomplish the following: $8 = Produce 1 Cube $144 = Produce 24 Cubes $384 = Produce 96 Cubes $100 = Translate the Priceless Cube into a new language $250 = Develop new training videos in new languages. Click here to help E3 Partners prevent slavery before it starts. GO In 2016, E3 Partners is fighting human trafficking in four countries: Thailand, Cambodia, Ethiopia, and Colombia. Sign up for an upcoming trip.
Categories: Mission Network News

New equipment brings new opportunities to India

Mission Network News - Thu, 02/04/2016 - 5:00am
India (MNN) -- Back in November, Audio Scripture Ministries (ASM) in India received a makeover for their studio building. Now they're excited for new equipment that will benefit their outreach in the ministry field.

(Audio Scripture Ministries via Facebook)

ASM India-Asia Director JP Sundararajan explains that their former studio and equipment were built for a cassette-based ministry. Because of the fast-paced and constantly-changing technology today, cassette tapes can't make the cut. Change was in order. After the exciting makeover of the studio, Sundararajan says ASM "spent the rest of the time upgrading our equipment in the studio: microphones, computers, software." In addition, the team was also excited to welcome trainers who taught ASM India staff how to work the new equipment in order to get the best sound and audio Bible recordings. Last week, a sound engineer from America was on site to provide training. "We are excited," says Sundararajan. "We have a state-of-the-art recording studio in Bangalore now that will continue to record more languages--God's Word in more languages in India." Several of the languages being recorded tend to be spoken only among tribes or in hard-to-reach areas, which means ASM's recordings are the first in history for these specific dialects. ASM is excited about the opportunity, and they're partnering with several Bible translation organizations to get the job done, including Wycliffe Bible Translators and Biblica. ASM believes unity in working with other organizations will be a key ingredient to spreading the Word among hard-to-reach people. "When we work together in harmony, it provides a beautiful glimpse of the Body of Christ at work." Sundararajan explains that recording Scripture is vital to sharing the Good News. Nearly 287 million adults in India are illiterate, which makes up about 37% of illiterate adults worldwide, Time News reported, citing the U.N.

(Photo courtesy of Audio Scripture Ministries via Facebook)

With audio Bibles, God's Word is still accessible to those 287 million illiterate people. "[Translating organizations'] reach only goes so far, and then we have to come alongside them to make sure that the hard work that has been done is not wasted but actually gets into people's hearts, into their homes, and into their communities." The significance of recording in heart languages is a major push in ASM's work. They want to be clear with the people they're ministering to that God speaks every language, not just commercialized or widely-spoken dialects. "Once we record Scripture, not only do we then provide access to God's Word, but we make God personal to these people," Sundararajan explains. ASM knows reaching the Global Church takes a lot of manpower. That's why they're inviting you to join them and spread the Good News. Or, if you're going on a mission trip, bring ASM audio Bibles along in the heart language of the people to whom you will be ministering. Look for opportunities here. Pray for the growth and spread of the Gospel in India and for the needs of ASM to be met.
Categories: Mission Network News

Gettys to Host Historic 1-Day Global Music Event With Thousands of Churches Worldwide

Christian Post - Pastors - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 7:44pm
OMF International and Getty Music announced an epic global movement that is set out to unite churches across six continents in song, in an effort to draw attention to global persecution of Christians.
Categories: Christian Post

Gettys to Host Historic 1-Day Global Music Event With Thousands of Churches Worldwide

Christian Post - Evangelism - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 7:44pm
OMF International and Getty Music announced an epic global movement that is set out to unite churches across six continents in song, in an effort to draw attention to global persecution of Christians.
Categories: Christian Post

Gettys to Host Historic 1-Day Global Music Event With Thousands of Churches Worldwide

Christian Post - Church Growth - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 7:44pm
OMF International and Getty Music announced an epic global movement that is set out to unite churches across six continents in song, in an effort to draw attention to global persecution of Christians.
Categories: Christian Post

John Piper, Paul David Tripp on Facing the Spiritual Battle With Weight Loss

Christian Post - Pastors - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 5:07pm
Pastors John Piper and Paul David Tripp say the battle to lose weight isn't just physical, it's spiritual.
Categories: Christian Post

John Piper, Paul David Tripp on Facing the Spiritual Battle With Weight Loss

Christian Post - Bible - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 5:07pm
Pastors John Piper and Paul David Tripp say the battle to lose weight isn't just physical, it's spiritual.
Categories: Christian Post

John Piper, Paul David Tripp on Facing the Spiritual Battle With Weight Loss

Christian Post - Church & Ministry - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 5:07pm
Pastors John Piper and Paul David Tripp say the battle to lose weight isn't just physical, it's spiritual.
Categories: Christian Post

PETA Creates New Department to Combat 'Animal-on-Animal' Violence

Christian Post - Missions - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 3:10pm
The nation's most outspoken and flamboyant animal rights group has announced that it is creating a new division to combat what it describe as "animal-on-animal" violence.
Categories: Christian Post

TD Jakes Partners With Inspire Properties to Release New, Interactive Bible App

Christian Post - Pastors - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 3:06pm
Megachurch pastor T.D. Jakes has partnered with Inspired Properties to create an interactive Bible app that allows users to explore Scripture while also engaging with Christian music, prominent speakers, Bible studies, and more.
Categories: Christian Post

Emanuel AME Church Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize

Christian Post - Church & Ministry - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 1:32pm
A group of politicians from Illinois have nominated the Emanuel AME Church of Charleston, where nine people were brutally gunned down during a Bible study last June, for a Nobel Peace Prize.
Categories: Christian Post

Another failed vote on Obamacare

WGRC News - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 1:28pm

An effort by House Republicans to override the President’s veto of a bill which gutted Obamacare is over. The measure also defunded Planned Parenthood. Republicans could not muster a two-thirds majority vote needed to override a veto. The vote was 241-186. GOP House Speaker Paul Ryan has vowed to continue efforts to end Obamacare.

Categories: Local News

Rand Paul drops out

WGRC News - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 1:26pm

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul said today he is suspending his 2016 campaign for president. Paul finished fifth in Monday’s Iowa caucuses with 4 and a half percent of the vote, behind rivals Ted Cruz, Donald Trump, Marco Rubio and Ben Carson.

Categories: Local News

Zika Virus

WGRC News - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 1:26pm

Health officials in Texas say the Zika virus can be sexually transmitted. Dallas County Health and Human Services has confirmed someone got the disease after having sexual contact with a person who was already infected. It’s the first known case of Zika being transmitted in the U.S. The news came a day after the World Health Organization declared a global health emergency because of the virus.

Categories: Local News

'Creflo Dollar Highway' Proposal to Honor Megachurch Pastor Upsetting Georgia Residents

Christian Post - Pastors - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 12:44pm
Creflo Dollar may have a portion of an Atlanta highway named after him, but some Georgia residents and business owners don't believe the megachurch pastor deserves the honor.
Categories: Christian Post

Franklin Graham Cheers Iowa Results on Social Media, Declares #ChristianVotesMatter

Christian Post - Missions - Wed, 02/03/2016 - 11:54am
The Reverend Franklin Graham took to social media to applaud the results of the Republican Iowa Caucus, declaring that #Christianvotesmatter.
Categories: Christian Post