Lord, today our thoughts and prayers turn toward the Maldives, but not as an island paradise. Today we pray about the fact that “protection of religion” in the Maldives actually means protection of Islam. We pray the Maldivian government will recognize the irony of this and become convinced of the value of true freedom of religion in their nation. We pray for Maldivians to be granted the right to become Christians and to be known as such. We pray for expatriate Christians in the Maldives, that you would give them resilience and hope as they function under close government watch. May your Holy Spirit clearly prompt them when it is time to share their faith and when it is time to remain silent. We pray for converted Christians in the Maldives. Give them special courage and protection as they live out their faith under intense persecution and isolation. May the Maldives become known as a place of both spiritual and political freedom. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.