Death, Devastation, and God

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Those close to the plight of Armenians in Karabakh deeply lament with yesterday’s surrender, 11/9/2020 at 5pm EST. There is plenty to grieve. The onslaught of radical Islam jars open the storehouse of anguish in every Armenian.

War crimes and terrorism launched against Karabakh – Artsakh for Armenians – ignited and unified hearts around the globe. Campaigns, rallies, protests, and prayer meetings rang through every country with desperate cries for intervention, justice, mercy and outright miracles.

Miracles needed indeed for a small volunteer army against the military wealth of Turkey and Azerbaijan and the endless supply of hired mercenaries from numerous Islamic countries. I beseeched God, day and night, fasting and crying out the battle cries of David for Armenia…

‘Rescue them O Lord, from evil men; protect them from men of violence, who devise evil plans in their hearts and stir up war every day…Keep them O Lord from the hands of the wicked…Hear O Lord, our cry for mercy. O Sovereign Lord, our strong deliverer, who shields our head in the day of battle, do not grant the wicked their desires…do not let their plans succeed…

But zeal and faith were not enough to overcome the vast enemy nor the inner battles of raging COVID, dysentery, and growing despair amongst the soldiers that fought without a break.

I had planned all night prayer last night, postponing today’s Bible fellowship with a precious new believer Raquel. With Armenia’s surrender however, all night prayer canceled. Somehow I slept well and awoke with the Lord’s words strongly pressed upon my heart,

“My Kingdom is not of this world. If it were, My servants would fight…”

I texted Raquel and asked if she wanted to fellowship – “sure!”. I shared with her how the situation turned out in Armenia,

“I am heartbroken for the destruction, bloodshed and death of so many and the rejoicing of evil people”

Raquel replied,

“We can only do what Jesus said, pray and do not give up and trust in the Lord.”

“Evil people will always rejoice in this world because Satan rules this world. Jesus already tells us that many will die in His name. The Armenian Christians that have been slain will be risen again by the Lord when the time has come and we will win this fight and reclaim the Earth that Father God made for us.”

Remarkably, for a new believer, she went on…

“I know you are heartbroken. Our deaths and suffering are inevitable. We all have a date reserved for each one of us to die. Sadly, many of those Armenians have met the last day of their flesh life. Remember though, they will live in eternity and they will no longer suffer. They are already with Jesus. Remember He said to the convicted man who believed in Him, crucified next to Him, that he would be with Him today. And as are the Armenian Christians who died in His name. He has wiped every tear from their eyes….”

I had not considered Armenia’s defeat, losing Karabakh. I had truly believed that the Lord God would move as He did against evil armies like the Moabites, the Ammonites, and Assyrians. One angel, at His command, could change the battle. I was sure, certain that I would travel to Armenia in the spring, hear the church bells ring at Sushi and burst with rejoicing.

I know this world is passing away. Darker days are coming for us all. I had such zealous hope though for the Armenians to stand and prevail after years of massacres, genocide, and persecution.

The Lord did not “strike the enemy with fear, panic and confusion” and sadly, He did not “bring Erdogan to shame.” But soldiers were baptized on the battlefield. Zoom prayer meetings joined me with Armenian believers whom I never met, to cry out for Armenians and pray for the enemy as well.

In my despair, the Lord’s very words gripped my heart with the truth I wasn’t reaching for and uplifted my heart through the new believer I am mentoring.

“My Kingdom is not of this world”

“…pray and do not give up and trust in the Lord.”

Pressing on….

14 thoughts on “Death, Devastation, and God

  1. Lisa Beth I am sorry. I was shocked when I heard. I didn’t know if I could contact you directly to see how you were doing. I have no wonderful words, I am here to sit on the ash heap with you. Please know I am praying for you and you are loved.

  2. Heart-breaking and encouraging, as so many things seem to be down here below. I am truly grieved for you and for those who are facing such hardship and disaster. I confess that I am so insulated in my bubble with my own issues that whole days pass without much thought for the persecuted church around the world. Thank you for sharing. I now have renewed resolve to pray for the persecuted church and for the oppressed in Armenia and around the world.

  3. Very moving, Lisa Beth. However, as your wise friend said:

    “Remember though, they will live in eternity and they will no longer suffer. They are already with Jesus. Remember He said to the convicted man who believed in Him, crucified next to Him, that he would be with Him today. And as are the Armenian Christians who died in His name. He has wiped every tear from their eyes….”

    This is our great consolation!

    • I truly battled with my whole heart for God to push back this evil army. But yes, that is our great consolation. I am so impressed with Raquel, she gave her life to the Lord this year and comes to my home every week for Bible study and fellowship. She will receive Communion on Friday for the first time in her life!
      Amidst the death and destruction, I want to thank God for the birth of new life around me.
      Let’s press on brother…thank you again David.

    • Thank you Tom, it’s good to hear from you. We were crying out to God day and night, He was our only hope. I truly pray though that all those Armenians who did join in prayer will not give up but will find true life in Christ, this world notwithstanding.
      Press on brother, thank you.

  4. Oh Lisa Beth, I am so sorry. I have been constantly praying for Armenia but like Raquel said Satan is the god of this world. Sometimes I feel so overwhelmed with trials and tribulations that I just say “Lord, please come.” Let us keep clinging to Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. Love you. Praying for you always. (Samaritan’s Purse has been sending relief supplies to the Armenian refugees.)

    • Thank you Eve for your loving words and encouragement. I am so impressed with Raquel bc she gave her life to the Lord this year and her faith is so precious. She comes to my home every week for Bible study and fellowship.
      Friday she will receive Communion for the first time in her life!
      Thank you again dear sister, ❤.

    • Thank you brother for praying for Armenia. Our legacy is one of oppression and persecution from Islam and Communism. Praying for God to raise them up as a light and a beacon, even for their enemies.
      God help us all in coming days to “stand firm to the end”.

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