Thursday, February 13, 2014

Religious Liberty

If you're like me, when you're stuck in the house because of snow and cold temperatures you start to look around for something to read, and so this week I dug out some of our family history stories and read them.  One was memories my great-great grandma had of growing up in what was then Prussia and her family's immigration to Russia, then the United States.  My family is Mennonite, and so for them, one of the big reasons they moved from Prussia to Russia and then the United States was for religious liberty.  The Prussian government changed their laws and wanted the Mennonite boys to start joining their army, then the Russian government did the same thing.  My ancestors did not believe that as Christians they should be fighting in those types of wars, so they simply moved to another country.  Our family has always been so thankful that they came to America when they did.  Those of their family who stayed in Russia were either killed in the revolution or sent to exile in Siberia. 

~my great-great grandparents' family~
All of this has me thinking about what I would do in their place.  Would I be willing to move my whole family to another country and start over, rather than compromise what I felt God wanted me to do?  It wasn't easy for them, the prairie was a lot different from the forests of Europe.  More and more our religious liberties here in America are being taken away, so it is something we may have to face someday.  I found this interesting chart showing the levels of religious freedom in various countries, and thought you might be interested as well.  God will give us strength for whatever He asks us to do!

"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.
In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world."
John 16:33


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