Friday, August 19, 2016

Want to have eyes open wide to what's happening in the Middle East? Read this book.

The plight of Middle Eastern believers has been heavy on my heart since the rise of ISIS of the course of the last couple years. It is scary times for the world at large, but it is horrific times for Christians in the Middle East. These people who are the living in the land of the origins of our shared faith, treading the ground that Jesus and disciples walked on, are being decimated and displaced. Large portions of Christian history, and world history in general, are being wiped from the face of the Earth. One of the worst parts about it is that it is largely under reported and ignored by the rest of the world. What the mainstream media does share it is hard to trust as the truth of the matter and any coverage at all has seemed to taper off. One news source I have come to treasure and rely on over the year is World Magazine. I grew up with a new issue of World coming twice a month to my parents house and really came to enjoy this resource as a teenager. World does an amazing job covering a very broad spectrum of world events and presenting them from a strong Christian viewpoint. I used them for many current event school reports and have already started my kids on their children's subscriptions

I was very excited to see that Mindy Belz, editor of World Magazine, was publishing a book containing her years of on the ground reporting in the Middle East. I had followed Mindy's column exposing the trials of the Middle Eastern Christians for some years now. I had become very thankful to have someone brave enough to go to the source and see what was truly befalling our brothers and sisters there and to be their voice to those of us anxiously watching from afar. We had even had the privilege to watch a video presentation Mindy put on with another one of our favorite Christian organizations, Summit Ministries with our youth group last year. It was an eye opening experience for   our teens and Mindy did an amazing job of bringing attention to the plight of Middle Eastern Christians by sharing personal stories and pictures.

 I knew this was the "current events" book I needed to read this summer- They say we are Infidels: On the run from ISIS with persecuted Christians in the Middle East. This is a thick book containing Mindy's experiences in the Middle East from 2003 until current day and it even includes maps and photos. Mindy truly has a heart for the Middle Eastern Christians and can even say she has many personal friends there now, making her the perfect person to author such a poignant expose on trials and tribulations of these brothers and sisters in Christ. This book features many families and individuals and their struggle for survival, but also an encouraging glimpse and the intrepid people and organizations doing all they can to bring aid and support. Mindy's passion for this topic bleeds thru the pages and makes for a very engaging and stirring read. On top of that, because she has spent so much time in the trenches, the majority of this book is written from a first hand view point and makes Mindy a very credible source. 

 I would strongly encourage any Christians who wish to be aware of the times we are living and how to pray for our fellow Christians around the world who are enduring persecution for our faith. I wholeheartedly agree with the inscription in the book jacket that says, " They say we are Infidels is required reading for those who are seeking to gain a firmer grasp on the complex dynamics at play in the war-torn Middle East today, and for anyone who is ready to stand with the persecuted and suffering."

I received this book in exchange for my honest review from Tyndale Publishers.

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