Friday, July 19, 2019

Prayer about the Kyoto Animation arson attack
PC: Jae C. Hong/Associated Press
Heavenly Father, we continue to reel about Thursday's arson attack at Kyoto Animation in Kyoto, Japan. The images from the scene of the crime, shared through both visual and verbal descriptions, are intense. The fact that one of the deadliest attacks in Japan’s history was so easily and cheaply done is disturbing. We thank you that the alleged perpetrator is in custody. Please bring out the full truth about this man and his attack in your perfect timing. Please bring justice for those who died such painful and terrible deaths. We also pray for the process of identifying the dead and then sharing that information with those who are wondering and waiting. Please provide the peace that passes understanding throughout that process. Grant fortitude to those who do this painful work. We pray for those who grieve the 33 known deaths. Bring loving, wise friends around them. Grant the bereft hope and strength. Lord God, we pray for those who have been directly traumatized by this event. May they seek you in the midst of their pain. May people reach out for help in whatever ways they need. May they begin the road to recovery soon, and may they steadfastly continue on that road, though it is long and painful at times. And, Lord, we pray for the larger communities of Japan and anime fans as they process this devastating event. Return hope and joy to these communities as soon as possible. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen. 

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Prayer for Puerto Rico as the people protest against prejudiced governor
Almighty God, our hearts go out to Puerto Rico, where the people are embroiled in great political conflict. Savior, this territory needs your saving. We thank you for revealing the truth about Gov. Ricardo Rossell√≥’s disgusting private messages within what he believed was his circle of confidence. We are absolutely appalled by the prejudicial and violent attitudes revealed by this leaked communication. We understand the people’s frustration with a governor who slanders women and famous citizens, and who jokes not only about killing political opponents, but also about the many citizens who died in Hurricane Maria. We thank you that the people have so far been able to demonstrate their infuriation with minimal injury and with nonviolence. We pray now for your peace to rain down on this land. May the government rightly respond to this crisis. May Puerto Rico return to a healthy path and be restored as a vibrant territory after its trials and tribulations of recent years. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Prayer about the life and death of Hodan Nalayeh and the award created in her honor

Heavenly Father, today we take a moment to reflect on Somali-Canadian journalist Hodan Nalayeh, for whom an award has been created in her honor by Somalia’s ministry of foreign affairs. First, Lord, we grieve her death in the terror attack that hit the Medina Hotel in the port city of Kismayo last week. We grieve not only the loss of this remarkable woman, but also the 25 others who died in this senseless act of violence. Next, we express gratitude for how Nalayeh chose to live her life: leaving the comfort of Canada to return to the land of her birth, with the intent of magnifying beauty and goodness in a place that is more often known for chaos and violence. The irony of the way she passed from this life is heartbreaking. We pray that this annual award in honor of Nalayeh’s inspirational life would not only recognize an outstanding individual from the Somali diaspora, but would inspire countless others to become outstanding citizens. May they live as Nalayeh sought to live and as you mention in Scripture: bestowing crowns of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and garments of praise. Amen.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Prayer about African swine fever vaccine

Lord God, we bring before you the need for a vaccine that fights African swine fever. First, we are thankful that this virus is harmless against humans—at least directly. Yet we know it is indirectly very harmful. The blow to farmers who lose their herds to this virus is devastating. The impact on the local, national and global economy is also alarming. So we are thankful that the world is taking notice now that China, the world’s largest pig producer, is seeing up to half its population affected. And now that the virus that started in Africa has spread to multiple Asian countries and parts of Europe, the global significance cannot be denied. We pray for the researchers in China, Vietnam, the United States, Russia, Spain and the United Kingdom, who are working tirelessly to solve this problem and create an effective vaccine. We pray for the process to bring successful vaccines to market to go as quickly as possible, due to the urgency of the issue. And we pray for generosity between nations as they work to solve a worldwide concern. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Prayer for Paola Sanchez and other deminers in Colombia

Almighty God, today we ask for special protection for Paola Sanchez and her coworkers as they demine the forests of Colombia. With 50 years of Farc rebellion against its government, we are saddened that Colombia is among the nations with the most landmines in the world. We grieve over the 11,000+ people who have already been killed or harmed by these devices, and we pray that this destruction will cease. We celebrate that the rebels and government have made peace with each other, and we pray that suspicion can diminish and that former Farc rebels will continue to reveal information about where mines and IEDs were planted. Give Sanchez and her teammates effectiveness, clarity, courage, and safety as they find and destroy these deadly devices. Though they walk in the midst of trouble, Lord, preserve their lives. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Prayer of celebration for mother whose son was returned alive after three years of believing he was dead

Heavenly Father, today we celebrate the reunion of Jane Daniels of Delft, South Africa, and her son, Denzil, who had been missing for six years! We rejoice that police in the neighboring country of Eswatini were able to make the connection with Cape Town police that the man they found was the one who had been deemed dead three years prior. It’s hard to imagine the joy of finding alive a son who had been counted as lost forever. Yet we know you are in the business of bringing new life! Please bring new life to this relationship as mother and son get reacquainted. Bring healing to the mentally challenged Denzil from any negative experiences that may have scarred him. Grant Ms. Delft peace and lasting joy as she receives this overwhelming gift of her son and moves from grief to celebration. We pray they will both draw near to you in this special new season in their lives. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Prayer for survivors of The Family
Photo source: News Limited

Heavenly Father, we are so thankful for your mercy! Today we pray for the survivors of The Family, the Australian cult led by Anne Hamilton-Byrne. With Hamilton-Byrne’s passing last month, we know cult members, children, grandchildren, etc., have a lot to process. As they reflect on their journeys within The Family and then their time after being liberated, please bring healing. May the survivors deal with memories, wounds, and injustices as they are able, in your perfect timing. May they find support networks, healthy resources, a sense of closure, and a strong connection with you. Lord, be gracious to them. Be their strength every morning, their salvation in time of distress. May all survivors of The Family live healthy, productive lives. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Monday, July 1, 2019

Prayer as West African nations move toward single currency

Lord God, we pray for the Economic Community of West African States as the group works toward the implementation of a single-currency system. With the desire to boost economic development in the West African region and improve cross-border trade, the proposed ECO will also help to address other regional monetary problems, such as the difficulty in converting some of its currencies and the lack of independence of central banks. We know this massive undertaking also faces some key issues, like the imbalance between participating nations’ economies. We pray for the leaders of these West African nations as they seek the best solution for their region. Grant them wisdom, foresight, analysis, unity, and selflessness as they seek solutions to some of the region’s economic woes. May these countries find a way to help each of them grow healthier. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.