Friday, September 29, 2017

Prayer for Bhutan - #30 on the World Watch List for persecution
Lord, today we pray for Bhutan, where Christians do not receive any formal status or recognition and are persecuted for not adhering to the Buddhist national heritage. We pray specifically for Open Doors’ ministry among them. We are thankful Open Doors provides immediate aid to Bhutanese who find themselves in crisis because of their faith. We ask your blessing on Open Doors as they also provide prayer support, advocacy and awareness, persecution preparedness programs, literature distribution, discipleship and literacy. Of course, we pray for your followers in Bhutan. Sustain them when their faith is tested. Help their unbelieving friends and family exercise grace toward them, rather than harsh judgment. In fact, may their unbelieving friends and family want to know more about you as they witness their loved one’s commitment to you. Please spread your light through your children in Bhutan. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Prayer for the Rohingya as they flee their nation

This opinion piece inspired the prayer for today, but does not necessarily reflect my opinion:
Lord, today we pray for the Rohingya. You see this mainly Muslim ethnic minority group fleeing Myanmar by the hundreds of thousands. It’s mind-boggling for us to consider 400,000 people fleeing their country within the past month, though this is becoming a more common theme in our world today. Lord, we are always dismayed when a government attacks its own people. To hear of the Myanmar army killing women and children, burning villages, and possibly planting mines along the border to prevent the Rohingya from returning is absolutely alarming. Lord, it’s hard to imagine what it would take to stop these atrocities. We would like to see it end! Please intervene in whatever way is best. And, Lord, we pray for these refugees as they scatter across Pakistan, India, Thailand, Malaysia and mostly Bangladesh. May they find places to call home. May their basic needs for food, water, clothing and shelter be met. We particularly pray for the overextended refugee camps in Bangladesh. Lord, please send well-equipped humanitarian groups and churches to help. Bless the Rohingya with your grace, hope and truth as they seek answers to the problems of pain and loss in their lives. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Prayer for Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria
Lord, today we pray for Puerto Rico, an island ravaged by Hurricane Maria. First we pray for people who may be in imminent danger at this very moment. With roads blocked and almost all cell towers down, Puerto Ricans still do not have the full extent of damage and danger. If there is anyone in need of immediate help, we ask you to compel someone to visit that area right now (and provide the necessary means and access), so help will arrive in time. Lord, we pray for those who are grieving the loss of loved ones. Give them the strength to take care of themselves and pick back up again after this storm, despite the severe grief they are experiencing. May neighbors rally around them to comfort them, even as they are dealing with their own losses of property and basic necessities. We pray for creative means of communications, since cell phones are mostly unusable. Grant peace to those who await word from loved ones. And, Lord, we pray for the looting to stop. It always sickens us to hear of people taking advantage of devastation to further harm others. Bring about deep conviction in the hearts of those participating in this—or tempted to participate in this. May they recognize this as an opportunity to rise up as heroes, rather than a time to take advantage of the vulnerable. Though there is so much more to pray, we ask in closing that you would protect and bless the thousands of US Army Reserves sent to help. May they do excellent, efficient, caring work. Sustain and watch over them. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Prayer for Tunisia - #29 on the World Watch List for persecution  Photo credit: Zohra Bensemra / Reuters
Lord, today we pray for Tunisia, where violent persecution toward Christians is on the rise. Heavenly Father, it's so disheartening that persecution is actually highest within families in Tunisia. We pray for family ties to be strong enough that parents can allow their children to freely worship you--and vice versa. May Tunisians not feel threatened by your children among them. Lord, we also pray against recent attacks on tourists. We know these attacks have implications beyond the tourism industry. Please work in the hearts of Islamic extremists to long for something purer and higher than their current pursuits. Woo them to yourself. We pray for the churches of Tunisia, that you would grant them wisdom as they seek to operate in a land that severely restricts them. Finally, we pray against fear in Tunisia, Lord. May your followers in Tunisia only know the holy fear of you, rather than fear of man. May their strength, courage and grace not only be an example to those around them, but may it draw people to you. In Jesus' powerful name we pray, amen. 

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Prayer about earthquake in central Mexico
Almighty God, you are King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We begin by declaring who you are today, because the devastation of the earthquake in central Mexico could be overwhelming. It's amazing to know that even the ground under our feet cannot necessarily be relied upon. It’s hard to imagine our world falling down around us: our schools, workplaces and homes. Lord, we pray today for those in Mexico City and surrounding communities who experienced just that. The grief is overwhelming in this area today, having lost possibly hundreds of people to this earthquake, including an entire school of children. Lord, as people reel with grief, may they also focus on the urgent needs around them. We pray particularly for all those helping with rescue efforts. Please give them supernatural strength of mind and body, clarity of thought, and effectiveness of efforts as they continue to search for survivors. We pray for people to find shelter, food, water, and whatever else they need. We pray for comforters--official and unofficial--to move among the people, bringing words of healing and hope, amid this great trial. May you reveal yourself and your goodness even in the midst of tragedy. In Jesus’ powerful name we pray, amen.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Prayer against child sexual abuse in India Photo credit: AFP
Lord, today we pray against rape culture in India. More specifically, Lord, we pray against child sexual abuse in India. To read that over 50% of Indian children who participated in a government study reported sexual abuse is absolutely horrifying. To know that more than 10,000 children were raped in this country in 2015 is truly disgusting. Heavenly Father, these kinds of statistics reveal a very deep cultural problem, which will take extensive efforts to correct. We ask for your Holy Spirit to convict influencers in this land to creatively, effectively, both directly and indirectly address this plague. We pray for people’s eyes to be opened to the damage this treatment is causing their children, their future wives, leaders, etc. May the tide turn in India—away from using and abusing children and toward treating them with absolute dignity and worth. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Prayer for Myanmar - #28 on the World Watch List for persecution
Photo credit: Reuters
Heavenly Father, today we pray for Myanmar. We are so thankful 2016 saw this nation's first free and fair elections in 25 years. We pray this country will continue moving toward freedom. Despite progress, we know Christian minorities in Myanmar continue to face displacement and violent attacks. We ask your Holy Spirit to strengthen these believers as they face trials and tribulation. Protect and guide your children. Lord, we also ask you to thwart the efforts of Ma Ba Tha as they campaign against religious minorities. Take back the lost ground, please. May Christians in Myanmar have the opportunity to live freely and to share their faith with others. We ask in Jesus' name, amen. 

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Prayer for Jordan - #27 on the World Watch List for persecution
Lord, today we pray for Jordan, which at one time was one of the most liberal nations in its region in terms of freedom of religion. We are saddened by the increasing persecution of Christians, including interrogations, abductions and abuse. May Jordanians of all faiths long for and work toward true freedom of religion. Lord, we particularly pray for Christian converts from Islam, who face the worst persecution. Give them wisdom as they live their lives. Help them to know if they should flee their land. Also make it clear to them if you want them to stay. Lord, we pray about the refugee crisis, which greatly affects all Jordanians. Keep Jordanians hospitable and refugees grateful. And may refugees have the opportunity to experience warmth, friendship and love, as well as the chance to hear about you. In Jesus' name we pray, amen. 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Prayer about Hurricane Irma
Photo credit: Rinsy Xieng/RCI Guadeloupe
Lord, so many hearts are united in prayer about Hurricane Irma. We grieve with those who have lost loved ones or suffered serious injuries in St. Martin, St. Barthelemy and Barbuda. And we pray for Puerto Ricans as they battle this storm right now. Lord, please redirect Irma out to sea, preventing further landfall. We pray for those in areas on Irma’s present path, such as the Bahamas, Cuba and portions of the US. May they not take any shortcuts in preparing. May they take the storm seriously. May people not hoard, but take only what they need so as many people as possible will be prepared. We pray for needed volunteers to get where they can most effectively serve. We pray for emergency responders, churches, NGOs and others who normally rise to serve during crises—prepare them in every way; bless and protect them. Lord, with Hurricane Harvey’s havoc still causing so many problems in the US, we pray that Irma will not cause further pain within that country or within others. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen. 

Monday, September 4, 2017

Prayer about Polish rape case
Lord, today we pray for justice for the rape victims in Poland, whose suspected attackers were finally arrested today in Italy. Lord, we are deeply grieved that these women were raped and beaten while enjoying the beach one evening, and that another tourist was beaten unconscious as well. It is flabbergasting how the human conscience can become so dull as to not recognize the humanity of others. Lord, we pray for these suspects, all migrants, as they face the legal system. We pray for justice for all and for the truth the come out. We are especially concerned for the minors among the suspects. Lord, what kinds of lives lead to this kind of action at age 15 and 16? Meet them in those inner places where they deeply broken. May these suspected attackers receive appropriate consequences, and may role models and positive influences come across their paths in years to come. Finally, Lord, we pray for healing for the attack victims. Give them closure and peace. Give them hope each day. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Prayer for Bangladesh - #26 on the World Watch List for persecution
Heavenly Father, today we pray for Bangladesh, where Islamic extremism is making it increasingly difficult for Christians to live safely and freely. We pray for those governing the nation to have courage in upholding the constitution, which includes freedom of religion. May leaders not kowtow to the demands of Islamic groups, who pressure the government through protests and more. Lord, you see your children in Bangladesh who are facing mental and physical abuse for their faith. Please sustain them in supernatural ways, giving them strength, courage, grace and hope. We pray for believers to find opportunities to study and be encouraged by your Word. We thank you for the work of Open Doors in this land, where the organization provides Christian literature, training, socio-economic development, and more. In Jesus' name we pray, amen.