The story is told of a young Korean girl who was raised during the days of the Communist takeover of North Korea. Going to school one day she noticed there was a new teacher. She noticed even more when the teacher announced that there was to be no homework that day! Amazed, she listened as the teacher went on to explain a 18moa game that would be played instead.
As all little children, this girl loved games. The new teacher explained that she was to go home and find the big black book that was read to her every night, secretly hide it in her book bag, and bring it to school. Those who did would be awarded with great prizes. But remember, she was told, secretly!
It sounded a little strange to her ears. She had never kept secrets from Mother and Father, but surely they would be so proud of her when she came home with the prizes, and of course, with the Bible. For that was the book which she heard every night. She marveled that the teacher knew that she experienced this reading, but just thought that all adults know a lot of things.
She ran all the way home, and patiently waited for her parents to go to bed, even volunteering to go to bed early herself. Now her parents marveled. This was so unlike her, especially since she was not tired out by homework tonight. Nevertheless, they tucked her in, and went to get the book. The girl thought she heard a scraping sound in the other room. Then the story. Then the return of the book to its hiding place. More scraping. Then finally Mom and Dad went off to bed.
Excited, she waited and waited until she was sure the parents were asleep. Then she sneaked into the next rooms and looked around. Finally she saw it, a place in the kitchen wall that seemed to have a loose rock sticking out. She carefully moved the rock out and sure enough, the big black book!
The teacher was as good as her word. Fourteen students brought in black books. Fourteen students were given a bright red flag and a red scarf. Plus they were treated like kings and queens. What a day!
That night she ran home to tell her parents what had happened and to show the prize. No secrets tonight! She called out for Mom. No answer. She waited. Mom did not appear. She waited more. Dad did not come home from work. She waited as she began to tremble and cry and fear. But they did not come home.
She finally drifted into sleep. When she awoke the next morning she wiped the sleep out of her eyes and immediately began to think of a horrible dream she had had. Or was it a dream? She called out for her parents again. No answer. No parents. Gone forever.
Mom and Dad had been arrested the day before, charged with teaching their child from foreign, decidedly anti-Communist, propaganda. She never saw them again. That day, she too was taken away, to a government home. Life truly changed.
Forty years passed. The middle-aged woman escaped into China, and began meeting with Christians, who for the first time since those young days gave her something to be excited about. They told her of Jesus, and of the hope of Heaven. Christ came into her life and gave it meaning and purpose.
Jesus came to give us hope. Let us pray that many more North Koreans will receive this wonderful message of Christ.