A quarter of a century ago, the tide of the Romanian Revolution turned, miraculously, and the people won their freedom. I’ll never forget the thrill of that Christmas season as I prepared to move to Eastern Europe.
Hopelessness turned to hope. The impossible happened. Years of invisible faith lived out in the dark, for that instant, became filled with the light of vision.
From the beginning, the people chanted, “Exista Dumnezeu!” as their rallying cry. “God exists!” Their quest for freedom was always about God. It involved much more than a political exchange of power. The people were fighting a regime that had indoctrinated two generations of their people that there is no God. They were now joining their voices to let it be known that they didn’t believe the government’s lies.
God heard them and He moved. He set them free. He broke through the bars of iron holding them captive. The fighting moved to Bucharest. On December 22, 1989, in the old city square, the army dramatically turned. The tanks that had been gunning down unarmed innocent people suddenly made an about-face and aimed their weapons at the Securitate, the Secret Police. Ceauşescu, deluded into believing the people adored him, stood on the balcony of the Parliament building to address the crowd. He fled through underground tunnels, then by helicopter to one of his palaces after another in an attempt to elude his pursuers. He and his wife, Elena, were captured, given a speedy trial, and executed on Christmas Day.
God also heard His people in bondage crying for a Savior 2,000 years ago. And He moved. He sent His son to come live among us, to show us His character and heart, and to ultimately set us free.
Many around the world suffer today. The same God who brought freedom to Romania 25 years ago is able to do the impossible now. Whether He hurtles political regimes or heals a terminal illness, He can bring peace, hope, and even joy into the bleakest of situations and most hardened of hearts today.
I believe with all my heart that the words I just typed are true, although in the middle of typing, I received word that my dear friend’s husband, stricken with a fast-growing cancer a matter of weeks ago, is in his final hours of life — on this side of the veil. He is headed home and his wife says her heart is at peace.
I do wish for you that same kind of peace, the kind found only in Him. Merry Christmas, friend!