Libya (MNN) — Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi launched an air raid on eastern Libya yesterday. Bombs fell on the area of Brega and on military camps on the outskirts of Adjabiya.
Oil installations in Brega appear to have been switching hands between pro-Gaddafi forces and rebel forces off and on. At one point, rebels believed they had forced Gaddafi supporters out, but another bomb was dropped mid-celebration.
Libya has been in an uproar for weeks. Anti-Gaddafi protests have led to air strikes on protesters, military personnel have fled the country, Tripoli is now surrounded by military tanks, and rebels across the country are armed and ready to fight.
The number of deaths associated with the weeks-long, violent uprising in Libya are unclear. Thousands of people are trying desperately to flee the country.
In a speech yesterday morning, Gaddafi threatened that thousands of Libyans will die if the U.S. or NATO interfere in the country. He continued to blame all uprisings on al-Qaida and still refused to step down.
In the midst of tragedy, however, hope has broken through, thanks to radio programming. HCJB Global president Wayne Pederson says, "The satellite provider we have from Europe beaming into North Africa has been able to stay on the air. Other satellite signals have been blocked, but the Lord has enabled us, for our radio signal, to continue 24/7 into the households of North Africa and the Middle East at this time."
And it's a good thing, too. HCJB broadcasts are able to reach 1.5 million households a week–that's roughly 8 to 10 million people–across North Africa and the Middle East. In the midst of disarray, millions are being comforted by God's promises.
"We feel that God has preserved our signal so that we can continue to bring hope, and encouragement, and teaching to people who are wondering, ‘What in the world is going on?' and ‘Is there hope?' and 'Is there love in this world amongst all the violence?'"
HCJB is taking every opportunity they can to provide that hope and love in Libya, but also across the whole region. Countries have been turned upside down in a day, but it has resulted in openness and opportunity.
"We don't know how this is going to end up, but we have a window of opportunity now for a few weeks, months–maybe years–that we can go in with the Gospel with this new-found freedom," says Pederson. "However, we've gone from dictatorship to anarchy, and we don't know where it's going to end."
The church is silently growing across North Africa and the Middle East. Believers are carrying the hope of Christ into the darkest of areas in times of deepest uncertainty, and people are responding. Pederson says the ministry receives text messages daily from people who say they have committed their lives to Christ.
Praise God for this growth! Pray for an end to these trials, as well.
HCJB will continue to be a light to this region as long as God allows. In fact, the ministry is getting ready to launch four new stations in undisclosed locations. There are easy ways for you to get involved. Giving just $1 goes to reach one household with godly radio broadcasts for a week. If you'd like to be a part of that, click here.