Jesus miraculously restored the life of a North Korean woman who drowned while crossing an icy river, desperate to escape the country's brutal regime following the death of her husband and daughter.
Open Doors USA shares the story of Ae-Cha, a Christian woman who experienced unthinkable horrors at the hands of the North Korean government. Because of their faith, she, her husband and her daughter were imprisoned in a labor camp, where they remained for nearly a decade. In the camp, her husband was tortured and killed by prison guards, and her daughter starved to death.
Desperate, Ae-Cha managed to escape the prison, her feet barely touching the dirt road as she fled for her life. However, she suddenly stopped dead in her tracks as she faced the rushing, icy river separating her life of slavery in North Korea and the Chinese border.
"Can I do this?" she whispered.
Remembering how God's faithfulness had sustained her for seven years in prison, Ae-Cha's fear turned into courageous faith.
"After making it this far, Father, I'm certain that you're with me and aiding my escape," she prayed before sinking slowly into the river. Minutes later, the icy water paralyzed her every limb, sending her into shock. She closed her eyes, succumbing to the cold.
Suddenly, Ae-Cha awoke with a jolt, and found herself alive on the other side of the river. There was no doubt God had sustained her, protecting her from the cold and carrying her to the other side.
Without a moment more of hesitation, she broke out in praise to her Father, her hands lifted and her heart overjoyed. She later continued her journey from China to South Korea, where she lives today and shares her story of God's power, love and faithfulness.
For over a decade, North Korea has held the #1 spot on Open Door USA's World Watch List of countries where Christians face the most persecution.
"In this area of the world, Christians pray with their eyes wide open," notes the outlet. "They share the Scriptures through whispers in the middle of the night. And many dare not even tell their own spouses or children about their faith in Christ fearing their families may suffer for their choices."
A separate report released last month by the Christian Solidarity Worldwide said that there are thousands of Christians suffering from extremely harsh torture in labor camps. The report said in some cases, Christians are hung on a cross over a fire, and at times crushed under a steamroller.
"Prisoners are forced to carry out long days of hard labour, such as mining and logging. Malnutrition is rife due to the poor rations, and increases the mortality rate. Prisoners live who poor accommodation that does not provide adequate protection against the tough winters, further damaging their health; and are subject to brutal treatment, torture and even execution by prison guards," the report said.