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Standing Up For Jesus
Photo: Sherry Hamilton
I walked into my four-year-old son’s room one evening. He had already been tucked into his bed. I was simply checking on him. When I looked in his room, he was standing up in his bed very straight, tall and very still. I asked why he was standing like that. He told me, “Mom, I am standing up for Jesus.” In the background, the song, “Stand Up, Stand Up, For Jesus,” was playing on his CD player.

That reminded me of some other stories where people stood up for Jesus.

There is a story of a twelve-year-old girl named Valya Vaschenko from Russia. She was asked by law to take an oath to “become a member of the Communist children’s group known as Pioneers.” She was a Christian. When she refused to do as she was asked, the director of her school and several other young girls were prepared to do it for her; force her to become a member. But as they read the oath and were about to put the scarf on her, she suddenly started praying to God out loud and began to sing a hymn, “We will stand firm for the gospel faith, for Christ, following His example, forward all, forward after Him.” Children like Valya, were usually heavily punished for praying and witnessing in their school. She chose to stand up for Jesus despite the consequences.

There is another inspiring story of a man named Tom White. He was an American Christian pilot who would fly his airplane over Cuba and drop gospel literature. His plane crashed one day and he was arrested by the Communists who put him in jail .

They asked him, “Who do you work for?”

Tom replied, “I work for Jesus.”

They said, “Oh, is that right? And how much money did this Jesus pay you for making these trips?”

Tom said, “I took these trips for no pay. My pay is the love and blessing that God gives me for obeying Him.”

He Chose to Sing

The Communists could not understand Tom’s answers and put him in solitary confinement where Tom was in the pitch black darkness with nothing and bitter coldness seeping in. But he chose to sing. He sang every Christian song he could think of. The guards would come and ask him what he was doing, and he would tell them he was singing about Jesus. The guard even told Tom, “If you love Jesus, don’t sing.” But Tom kept on singing.

Eventually, he was brought back to his original cell. The Communists were convinced that he was not “a super spy trying to overthrow their government.” After many prayers, letters, appeals from U.S. Congressmen and even Mother Teresa, he was released.

These are two amazing examples of people who made the decision to stand up for Jesus, no matter what the price.

The Bible says, "Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him" (James 1:12).

Will we stand up for Jesus?

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By Erika Gladden. Copyright © 2010 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®.

Jesus Freaks, DC Talk and The Voice of the Martyrs: Stories of those who stood for JESUS: the ultimate Jesus Freaks. Albury Publishing, Tulsa, Oklahoma, 1999. pgs. 278-279 and 256-260.

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