Romans 11:33-36

Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! “For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor? Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?” For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Extreme Warmth

Jeremiah 20:9

Nadejda Sloboda could hardly contain her enthusiasm. She had just learned about Christ from a shortwave radio program broadcast from Europe. As the first Christian in her Russian village, she desperately wanted to tell all her friends about the God who had miraculously changed her heart. But she knew the local authorities strictly prohibited any talk of God or Christianity.

However, Nadejda was unable to contain her zeal, and soon a church was born. When the police were unable to squelch the church’s growth even with road blockades, they arrested Nadejda and sentenced her to four years in prison. Her five children were taken by force to an atheistic boarding school, which tormented Nadejda. But she felt nearer to God than ever before and persisted in sharing Christ even with her fellow prisoners.

Because of her refusal to stop talking about Christ, officials put her in a solitary, unheated cell for two months. It was in the middle of winter and Nadejda was not aloud any bedding whatsoever. She was forced to sleep on the cold concrete floor. After she was returned to the common cell, her fellow prisoners asked her how she was able to stand the treatment. She replied, “I fell asleep on the cold concrete floor trusting in God, and it became warm around me. I rested in the arms of God.”

Most Christians can recall a time in their spiritual journey when it seemed like they could never get enough of God and his Word. Spiritual zeal was second nature. Fervor was a constant friend. Yet, somehow our faith grew cold along the way. Perhaps it was persecution that squelched our enthusiasm. Perhaps it was personal tragedy. Or perhaps it was nothing in particular—just ordinary activities that dampened our spirits and reclaimed our priorities. Are the flames of spiritual fervor now merely smoldering ashes? Has your zeal grown dormant? It is possible to ignite a new relationship with God and fuel the fire within. Ask him to help you warm up to the idea today.

Readings taken from
Extreme Devotion: The Voice of the Martyrs


Post a Comment

Search Deep Riches