Defying the Khmer Rouge

The Khmer Rouge ruled Cambodia from 1975 – 1979 under the cruel régime of Marxist dictator Pol Pot. During this short period in history, more than 2,000,000 Cambodians lost their lives. Pol Pot intended to create a Cambodian master race through social engineering. This devastating time in history is known as the Cambodian genocide.

Bopha, a strong and humble woman who lived through Pol Pot’s brutality, had a husband that lost his leg in the war against the Khmer Rouge. Later in life, she and her husband found faith in the Lord and held fast to His promises. In 1993, both Bopha and her husband began to witness to their neighbours, telling them about Jesus and His transforming power. The remnants of the Khmer Rouge in the jungle opposed Bopha and her husband at every turn. They burned down their house and repeatedly tried to intimidate them into silence. On numerous occasions, the soldiers came to their home with guns pointed and threatened to kill family members. God was always there though. He protected them and kept everyone alive. Bopha and her husband were undeterred from serving the Lord. They wanted to continue telling others about Jesus. To remain faithful to this evangelistic calling, they knew they had to send Bopha to Bible school. Selling the family cow was the only answer despite the extreme hardship that this would create. Bopha studied the Bible for three years with the full support of her family. Because of Bopha’s faithfulness and her husband’s unwavering support, more than 180 families have now accepted Christ. They obeyed the call on their lives despite all the risks.

We know that in Romans 8:17 it says: Now if we are children, then we are heirs- heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in His sufferings in order that we may also share in His Glory. I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.

When we put our trust in Jesus, we must also share in His sufferings. Like Bopha and her husband, we understand that the cost of serving the Lord is entirely worth the pain if it means experiencing his Glory.

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