Grace unto you and peace from God our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ. I pray that God is working in you all, and that you are walking in what He has prepared for you to walk in. He wants us all to be transformed by the power of the Gospel, and to walk in obedience to the call we have received from our Lord Jesus Christ.
Yesterday was really hard for all of us. Our faith is truly being tested, and I will be honest and say it is not easy. It hurts, and there is something in us that just wants to throw everything away and make it stop. This is now thirty-seven days since I got detained. I was told they had heard that I was smuggling weapons, and that I was a national threat. Since then, I’ve been told that there is no case against me for smuggling weapons, so all of that is gone.
But I’m still here. I’m still “a national threat,” and I can just say it is crazy what is happening here. We were told last week that there was a really good chance that I could come out on a bond, but it didn’t happen. Then, we heard that it would probably happen this week, as we have sent in all our papers and we have a really good case, and we were really hoping and believing that they would let me out on a bond. But it did not happen.
Instead, they told us that they will not let us get a bond, and my lawyer was shocked. He was surprised and shocked. It was almost like they did not even look at my case. We sent in a lot of good proof that I am a good candidate to be released on a bond.
But no, I got rejected. They rejected it right away, so somehow they think I am still too dangerous to let out there, but I don’t understand it. Jesus has truly transformed my life when I gave everything to Him twenty-seven years ago. I haven’t been drinking or smoking in over twenty years. I have never taken drugs. I have never robbed anyone. I have not been in a fight since I gave my life to Jesus at eighteen years-old. I pay my taxes. I keep the laws according to what I know. There’s always something we don’t know about, but I’m always trying my best because I truly fear God, and I could not have said it much better than what Paul says here, “I do my best always to have a clean conscience before God and people.” (Acts 24:16)
Yes, this is what I’ve been trying to do for years. I try always to do my best to have a clean conscience, first before God, and then before man. But the people who got my papers rejected it right away, like they had already made up their mind that there should be no bond for me – that I am a danger and therefore I should not come out now. Yes, it did not only come as a shock and surprise for my lawyer, but especially for us, and especially for me after I have been locked in here for over a month, hearing other people coming out on a bond.
“God, what is happening here? God, what are You doing?” I ask God, and myself this, “Is God not faithful? Will He leave me here?” But of course God is faithful! We just don’t know what is happening right now.
This place is so different from my normal life – married twenty-five years, and the last three and a half years after we came to America, I’ve only been away from my wife and girls for two or three days. I am very social, talking with a lot of people daily, spending a lot of time with my brothers and sisters in the Lord, sharing the Word, but not here. See my update Apollos left me.
Out there, I run. I run often. I hike, I bike, and I love nature. But since I got detained, I have not touched grass or touched a tree, or done the things I’m normally doing out there. I do videos to all of you out there, but not here – no iPhone, no internet, no Facebook, no Signal, no YouTube. This is truly a different world. But here I am, and they will not let me out because they think I’m a danger and a national threat, and this is what I don’t understand.
Sorry if I somehow inform you wrong about the details, but I don’t have all the details, and it’s also truly difficult for me to know everything that’s going on here, and of course there are also a few things I cannot tell you, and I don’t know everybody who is reading this update either.
But just to come with an example of how crazy this world is for me – few weeks ago I heard my name over the loudspeaker. I came to the door and there was an officer or agent, and he gave me some papers. The headline on the papers said “NOTICE OF CUSTODY DETERMINATION,” and two lines later it said, “You have been identified as having one or more of the risk factors identified by the district court as placing you at ‘heightened risk of severe illness and death upon contracting the COVID-19 virus.'” And then there were three risk factors listed that could be checkmarked. “1.) Over 55 years old – NO. 2.) Pregnant – NO.” But the last one had a checkmark – “3.) Has a chronic care condition as confirmed by a medical professional. Condition – OBESITY.” And then further down it said, “Based on this review, a decision has been made to maintain custody.”
So according to these papers he gave me, I have been examined by a medical professional, and they have looked at my condition and said that I am obese. I can say to all of you out there that this is a direct lie. No professional would ever say that I am obese. Even the officer who gave me the papers told me a little about it and said, “It says you are obese?!” and then he just looked at me and said, “You are NOT obese!” Then he gave me the papers and left. Yes, it did not take many seconds for him to look at me to see that I was not obese. And I’m sure that those people who made these papers have never met me in person. But here it is in black and white that I am “obese” and that I am “in danger of being let out.”
Yes, this is just CRAZY. And it will ALWAYS of course be healthier for me to come out than to be locked in here. I’ve already started to feel it in my body, being locked in here. I cannot run, I cannot hike, I cannot bike, like out there. I’ve started to do some exercise in my cell to try to keep my body going because I feel it in my body, and I wake up every morning with pains in my knees.
So, what a life we are living. What now? I can just say that we need to see God move, or I will be here for a longer time. Next week we will talk with a judge and get a date for my asylum case, which can be several weeks out. But somehow, I believe that something will happen supernaturally, and that this will not happen in a natural way. God will show His power.
It almost reminds me of Moses in Egypt, how Moses came to Pharaoh and said, “Let my people go,” but we read that Pharaoh hardened his heart and said, “No.” Later, GOD hardened Pharaoh’s heart, because GOD wanted to show HIS power.
It also reminds me of Gideon who had 22,000 men, but GOD cut it down to 300. Why? Because God didn’t want the people to say that the war was won by their own strength. Yes, this is where we are NOW.
It is up to God now, but it has actually ALWAYS been up to God. We just are afraid to let go. But yesterday it was like all hope for me of coming out now in a natural way disappeared. So my question is, as it was written in the headline, “God, what are You doing?”
Please keep praying for us, especially in these days where our faith really is being tested. We will in a few days share more about this, and how God in former times has tested us, but how He has been faithful every time, which we really need to hold onto that He also will this time. Please pray that God will open a door for me to be released, or turn the hearts of those people who said, “No,” or send somebody higher up to help us. I don’t know what, but just that God will open a door so I can come out and be with my family and you all out there!
Pray that God will use this to show His power, and that HIS name will get glory by this! Thank you all for your prayers and support! And then I encourage you all out there to STAY STRONG and keep preaching the GOOD NEWS of the GOSPEL!
God is doing so many beautiful things out there, like a video my friend Kim Nielsen has just done. I really want to share this video with all of you out there. THIS is the life He has for ALL of us! “Are you on a cruise ship, just having fellowship? Or are you on a warship having DISCIPLEship?” Yes, these were the words God spoke to Kim, and he left the cruise ship and is now seeing amazing fruit! See the video with Kim here and say yes to the call God has given you.
God bless you all out there, and thank you all for your prayers and support!
Torben SondergaardDisciple of Jesus Christ, now and forever