8.14.2008

Olympics

Today I looked up the word Unity in the dictionary. Here is what it said: Oneness of mind, feeling, etc., as among a number of persons, concord, harmony or agreement.

Did you know that the early olympic festivals were held between many Greek cities as a sign of unity?

Now, I'm not boycotting the olympics or anything. I'm watching it off and on. But I've been frustrated that this country, China, has been allowed to host the olympics this year. My thoughts have been: that I am not, nor do I want to be, known as a country that is Unified in the way China conducts itself. I am NOT in agreement with them. Not only does China offer arms to Sudan to kill it's own people, there is also no religious freedom there. The government pretty much does what it wants to do.

About a year and a half ago a group of olympic atheletes got together and testified to the IOC (International Olympic Committee)that they would like to stop China from hosting the Olympics. Several of their visa's to China were denied for the Olympics.

Today I was reading an email where a Chinese pastor (called pastor "bike") worked with Voice of the Martyrs to create a prayer band for Christians to wear, to remind them to pray for the persecuted Christians that are in China. Over 800,000 of these bands have been circulated. I was at my home church in Mississippi last weekend and they passed them out on Sunday to remind people to pray for China.

On Aug. 6, Pastor "Bike" was arrested while trying to deliver medicine to his ailing wife. His wife and another pastor were also arrested. AND, Chinese officials are opening a full investigation of the Olympic Prayer Bands that were distributed to house church members within China.

Come on...prayer bands!

I've really been frustrated with China. And I might have just ruined my chances of ever getting a visa to visit China after posting this. They are probably typing my name right now into the "can't visit China" database....But I've been to Sudan, I have close personal friends there, I've seen firsthand what's happening there. I don't understand at all why the international community is not doing something. I'm very frustrated.

I know boycotting is not the answer...I'm not sure, but I don't think Jesus boycotted...he loved. And we are supposed to conduct ourselves as much like Jesus as we can....

So how do we love China and at the same time help them to change. How do we speak into the lives of the "powers that be."

Maybe by having the Olympics there....

We'll see! That's my prayer.

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