“But I tell you. Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” MATTHEW 5:44 NIV
As a college student I was able to travel to Amsterdam in the Netherlands, where I was able to visit the Anne Frank house. Anne was born in Germany to a Jewish family, but when she was a couple years old, Hitler became the leader of Germany. Many families fled Germany, and when she was only four, her family fled to Amsterdam. Five years later, World War 2 began. The Franks considered fleeing again but then decide to stay. The following year, Germany invaded the Netherlands. Soon, Jews were rounded up and taken to concentration camps. But Anne’s father had a plan.
They build a hideout in the building next to his place of work. The door to their tiny hideout was hidden behind a bookcase. They had to be very quiet as they hid, fearing for their lives. On her thirteenth birthday, Anne got a diary as gift and spent hour writing about her family lived in hiding and other thoughts about her life and her feelings. Her family lived in hiding almost two years.
But on Augusts 4, 1944, the Germans discovered their hideout and sent everyone to concentration camps. Sadly, about six months later Anne died in the camp from disease. Her mother and sister also died; only her father survived the camp. After the war, her father found Anne’s diary, and two years later it was published and became a popular book throughout the world.
As our family toured her secret hideout, we imagined what it would be like to be persecuted. The challenge I have for you will be hard, but the words come directly from Jesus.
Read today’s Bible verse and pray for the strength to follow it. With God help, you can do it.