When the Lord speaks to you, you have to be obedient to His voice because you don’t have a choice. You can either obey Him immediately or He will make you obey, but that journey could be too painful.  If you have a calling you must not resist or deny it!

My story begins in July 2015. The Holy Spirit spoke to me specifically to help the persecuted Church in India and my immediate response was “Lord I am already doing it!!”

In the state of Madhya Pradesh, where I was born and raised up, I had very good relations with the Politicians, Bureaucrats, Business Leaders, Police Officers etc. Whenever a situation arose among our brethren in our community, I would always reach out and help them in all ways possible.

However, I heard the Lord say “You have to do it openly; it’s a time of warfare and you need to stand up like Esther did”(going to her own people & the king).

When I understood the whole significance of what the Lord was telling me, I was terrified. “No Lord, I can’t do it full time” was my counter, since I was not interested to engage in a ministry. I never had a burden for it; never had it crossed my mind in the past; nor was I ready to stand up against my political friends. In a nutshell, I never wanted to come out of my comfort zone, living on my terms, not willing to give up my life of ease and indulgence.

However, God was relentless. While I was restless and continued to battle God’s voice, He continued to meet with me, telling me that when He came to the earth, He offered up that which cost Him everything; that I would have to serve Him in that same spirit. Every service of mine must cost me something.

God filled me with His Holy Spirit and put a clear mandate in my heart – He wanted me to “come out, make people aware of His Persecuted Church in India, raise up Prayer Warriors and for me to provide comprehensive support through this organisation”.Step by step, he began unveiling His blue print to me, showing me the situation which the Church was going to face. It is from this fount, that rivers of living water began to flow.

The name “Persecution Relief” was the first choice and every single decision from that moment on, started to unfold, one after the other – without any real effort from my side. Just like when David got the blueprint for the Temple of God, all the material required for the building of the temple was found to be in excess, that he had to tell the people to stop bringing offerings – God continued to teach me that when He gives you a vision, He would provide everything required to accomplish this vision.

I made the website of Persecution Relief and like everybody else does, I put a ‘Donation Page’. One day, on my travels, I heard the Lord speak again, asking me to remove the ‘Donation Page’.

God said “Why do you have the ‘Donation Page”? It is I who gave you this project and it is mine to provide everything you need. Empty yourself first. It is very easy to do ministry with someone else’s hard-earned money.”I felt humbled by His chastisement but this incident propelled me to trust Him 100%.

As my journey began, I started talking to Senior Leaders, sharing my vision for the persecuted Church in India. I was always encouraged by men of God like Pr. D. Mohan, Pr. Paul Dhinakaran, Pr. T.J. Samuel, Pr. Babu Cherian, Pr. Jacob John, Pr. P.R. Baby etc. to name a few.

When I look back, Persecution Relief has had an incredible journey, providing relief to over 1000’s of individuals, organisations & persecuted Churches. I thank God for every brother and sister, Church and Organisation, who have sacrificially donated and supported Persecution Relief and the persecuted Church in our land. I praise God with all my heart for such people. We could not have achieved this without your help and support.

I also want to thank and praise God for every brother and sister who are spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ in our land, who have made sacrifices that we will not know about until Jesus comes again, whose names are not published and who have no media coverage, who are not known in Christian circles, but who are God-fearing, humble people. I salute them.

Since the launch of Persecution Relief, our footprint and reach throughout India has been growing across the 29 Sates of India. Our vision is to build a refuge center which would be a shelter for the persecuted church in India.

I give thanks to the Almighty, for giving me this great ministry. I praise God for every heart that has been touched, every life that has been transformed, every family and relationship that has been restored through Persecution Relief — all as a result of Christ’s amazing work on the cross and the courage and determination of the servants of God, to be the light and salt in this world.

There is much to be done; my role model is Jesus Christ and our accomplishments are defined by the cross – by service, humility and sacrificial love. We believe in the coming days many Persecutors will accept Jesus Christ as their Personal Savior and will carry the baton ahead.

Regardless of the cost, I want to be an example and inspire thousands across India to continue this legacy, to dedicate their lives in remembering and serving the persecuted Church. God is at work through the various lives touched through Persecution Relief.

May the beauty of Jesus Christ shine brightly through them.

Shibu Thomas