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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Predicament (03/01/12)

TITLE: Cataclysmic Dilemma
By Shanta Richard


It was the year 1991. The peaceful little village of Damour, in Lebanon was bathed in the golden light of the setting sun. After a day of hard work the villagers were making ready for a restful night. Suddenly the serenity of the night was shattered by the fanatic shrieks of men and the thundering noise of horses in full gallop. The terrified villagers knew that this was the marauding band of blood-thirsty Muslims out to kill and ransack their village.

The Muslims entered each home and after tying up the inmates they brought all their meager treasures and bundled them. Next they went into the animal pens and killed the lambs and calves. They built a big fire in the center of the village square and roasted the animals. While the terrified villagers watched they began to eat and drink and make merry.

The Muslims were out on a divine mission. They knew that most of the villagers were Christians. They had made a vow to convert everyone to Islam by force, threats and torture.

Early next morning the Muslims tied up the villagers and lined them up. In a loud voice the leader shouted, ‘Become Muslims or die.’

Mary Khoury and her family were some of the victims. As Christians they realized the dilemma they were in. Mary was seventeen and she had heard of the horrible kinds of torture the Muslims can put her through before they finally killed her. In the frenzy of panic she cried out to God to help her. She suddenly recalled that Jesus Himself had been given just such a choice. If He would give up His claim to be the Son of God and Savior of man, He would be set free or He would be crucified. Her Savior had chosen the agony and shame of the cross and had died for her. Now it was her chance to die for Him. She watched as they killed her father and mother before she was shot.

Two days later when the Red Cross came, they were surprised to find Mary alive among the massacred bodies. The shot had not killed her but had paralyzed her. She was deeply distressed by her helpless and hopeless state. As she prayed and cried, God revealed His plan for her paralyzed life. He gave her a vocation of prayer for Muslims, especially for the one who killed her parents and crippled her.

This is a true story taken from ‘The New Foxes’ Book of Martyrs by John Foxe, rewritten and updated by Harold J. Chadwick. Persecution of Christians is still happening in many parts of the world. We, in America, are enjoying the benefits and blessings of Christianity all these years and have never been exposed to the agony of persecution. And so we often tend to forget those early martyrs whose blood has paved the path we so fearlessly tread.

But will this time of complacency continue? Even now don’t we see the signs of intolerance towards Christianity around us? Although it is subtle don’t we see laws enacted that curtail our freedom to profess and practice our faith? Do we have the courage to stand firm on the principles of the Word of God and defy anything that denies that privilege? It is a predicament and we do have to make a decision between the glamour of comfort, pomp and vanity of the world or respond to the call of the Savior, to forsake all and follow Him. Like the Mary of Bethany in Luke’s Gospel, Mary Khoury chose, ‘the good part which shall not be taken away from her’ (Luke.10:42).

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Member Comments
Member Date
Rosamund Bunney03/08/12
Thank you for this well written piece. We must never forget our many persecuted brothers and sisters.
C D Swanson 03/09/12
Wonderful job. I enjoyed this whole entry. Thank you.

God Bless~
Mildred Sheldon03/09/12
What a poignant entry. I could feel Mary's pain. What will we choose if that happens here? Thank you and God bless.
C D Swanson 03/15/12