Pray For Syria

Omran is a 5-year-old young boy who was pulled from the rubble of a building that collapsed as a result of an airstrike on the city of Aleppo, Syria. The medical aid workers pulled him out of the rubble and set him in the chair. They left him there and went back looking for more people amongst the rubble. He is covered in layers of dust, ash, dirt, and encrusted blood. He sits motionless in a chair with a look of shock and pure sorrow. His picture has become the face of all Syrians affected by the war. He doesn’t know it but he is taking the internet by storm.

Omran

When I saw this picture my heart sunk. All I could think about was why this precious little boy had to go through this? What could I do to help? How many more children are fortunate enough to still be living but are living in these conditions?

If I were to have seen this picture a couple of months ago I most likely would have been overtaken by the same feelings and would want to know what I could do. I would have researched and thought about ways I could physically help children like Omran. I would have searched for agencies and organizations that are on the ground in Syria and would have tried to figure out how to help them.

When I saw this picture I did have those thoughts. I thought about how I wanted to help this little boy and others like him. I thought about wanted to go over and give this little boy the biggest hug and tell him I loved him and that I was here to help. But then I realized that I can’t exactly hop on a plane and go to Syria. But there is something I can do. Something you can do. PRAY!

I know. I know. That sounds like one of the most cliché things you could say but God been teaching me a lot about the amazing, gloriously wonderful power of prayer. I’ve learned how prayer can and will literally move mountains. All you have to do is ask.

Can you imagine what would happen if we all prayed for Syria as a country? If we prayed for peace. If we prayed for kids like Omran. Can you imagine the amazing revival that would take place and how God would be glorified??

What would happen if we prayed so earnestly and unwaveringly like the church in Acts 12:5?

What would happen if we really truly expected that God would answer our prayers like Rhoda was Acts 12:13?

What would happen if we as a global church committed to praying for those affected in Syria and the surrounding countries once a day for 5 seconds? For 5 minutes. For 5 hours. For 5 hours. For the rest of our lives.

More importantly what would happen if YOU chose to pray.

1 Timothy 2:1-3 The first thing I want you to do is pray. Pray every way you know how, for everyone you know. Pray especially for rulers and their governments to rule well so we can be quietly about our business of living simply, in humble contemplation. This is the way our Savior God wants us to live. (The Message)

God calls us to pray for everyone we know in every way we know how. This is not just a good suggestion God gave us in a book written hundreds of years ago. This is a commandment in His word that is still relevent today. He commands us to pray for everyone we know. For all the nations and people of the world. In every way we know how to.

I saw first hand this summer how lives can change when we are truly pouring our heart out to God about something. Will you please join me in praying for the country of Syria. Below is a list of some specific prayers for the country of Syria according to Operation World.

  1. Pray for Syria’s influential role upon the Middle East. Peace in that area will not be achieved unless Syria is involved.
  2. Pray for our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ who are in Syria. Pray for safety but also for boldness to listen to what God is leading them to do share His love with those around them.
  3. Pray for the unreached people in Syria. Pray that God’s love will be able to reach them soon and that bridges between Islam and Christianity can be made and God’s overwhelming power will overtake them.
  4. Pray for ISIS. Pray that the leaders of ISIS will be exposed to God’s love and that because of that they will begin to turn their lives over to God and that they will then grow up and turn the country of Syria back to God.

These all seem like big, daunting prayers and some of you may be thinking that those are just dreams of the future but will probably not really ever happen. But I do truly believe that if we take these prayers before God’s feet and that we expect the prayers to be answered they will.

On Sunday my pastor at Prescott Cornerstone, Scott Savage, challenged the congregation with something he is calling the #DesperatePeopleChallenge. The #DesperatePeopleChallenge is a challenge for everyone to pray at 12:15pm everyday from August 14 until September 3. I would like to challenge you all to join us in this. I am so excited to see what God does during these 28 days (23 days now).

God can and will do big things in Syria. The only question left is do you want to be a part of it?

Bibliography: Mandryk, Jason, and Jason M. Operation World: The Definitive Prayer Guide to Every Nation. United States: Inter-Varsity Press,US, 2010. Print. In-line Citation: (Mandryk and M)

 

What I’ve Learned

I have sat down about a dozen time since getting back from Zambia to try and share my thoughts on what I am feeling and what God taught me on this trip but each time I sat down I would find myself staring at a blank screen and my mind would just go black. But my friend Hannah who went on the Trek7 to Costa Rica just posted this blog about her time in Costa Rica and what she learned and it is pretty much exactly what I have been thinking/feeling and trying to convey to you. So instead of trying to sit down and type a new blog I thought would repost hers!!!

It feels like yesterday I was sitting in my bed at home the night before I left for training in MN. Now, 7 weeks later I’m once again sitting in my bed at home, except for this time, I’m not waking up to go on an adventure for a few weeks, I’m waking up […]

via Update 8: What I’ve learned. — Trek7

My Ocean

The song Oceans by Hillsong United is one of those songs that many people are familiar with. When this song first came out I had claimed it as one of my favorite songs but I don’t think I ever really understood what it was saying until a couple weeks ago.

Jenna and I had been at  the Chipata Feeding Center for about a week teaching, playing, and loving on the children. One of the things I had hoped to accomplish while on this trip was to open up the lines of communication between sponsors and children but also the children’s families. I had been talking with Victoria, the onsite GlobalFingerprints manager in Zambia, and Elizabeth, the school teacher at the feeding center, about the possibility of meeting some of the parents of the children who were in GlobalFingerprints. We really wanted to bridge the gaps in communication and show them that we are here working alongside them to help them give their children the best. But most of all we wanted to show them that God is with them and that He loves their children more than they can even begin to fathom.

We planned to meet with the parents Friday morning at 10. Thursday night I was siting on my chair in our house and started to feel this huge sense of inadequacy overcome my whole body. I kept imagining all the things that could go wrong and really started to freak out. I went to bed fervently praying that God would use me in some way to impact these parents lives. That next morning I woke up with the same sense of inadequacy and started to get really nervous about speaking to these parents. I am only 18 and I wasn’t exactly sure how to portray to them that I wasn’t some young American girl who wanted to come in and save them and their children but that I was someone who wanted to show them that Jesus is the one who can save them.I wanted to show them how much I love their children with hopes that showing them a tangible love they would be able to know God’s love. That is a pretty daunting task to undertake but especially for someone who is still trying to understand the vastness of God’s love for me and for others.

As Friday morning rolled around Jenna and I hopped in the back in the the ministry bus for our ride into town. I was listening to music on the way to the Feeding Center and one of the first songs to come on was Oceans. I’ve heard this song time and time again but that morning I really heard the lyrics.

The first line is “You call me out upon the waters, the great unknown my feet may fail…. I am yours and you are mine.” In that moment I realized that this was an ocean that God was calling me out upon. He was calling me to walk out on the water, keep my eyes on Him, and trust that He will keep me afloat. I had to trust that Jesus was going to give me the words to speak to these parents. Words that were not mine but that were His. He has put me in this position to be a mama to all of these children and to walk alongside these parents for a reason. I do not understand that reason at all but I am trusting Him and walking out on the ocean keeping my eyes focused on Him.

As much as I would love to say that I am constantly keeping my eyes and my focus on Jesus it doesn’t always go that way… I am much like Peter in Matthew 14:22-33 (paraphrased) The disciples were on a boat in the middle of the ocean and they saw Jesus walking on water towards them. They saw Him and were terrified thinking it was a ghost. Jesus told do not be afraid because it was Him. Peter responded and said if it is truly you have me walk out on the water to you. Jesus told him to come. So Peter got out of the boat and started walking on the water towards Jesus. But he took His eyes off Jesus and started looking around at the water and the wind and was afraid so he began to sink. Jesus reached out His hand and caught Peter and said you have little faith, why do you doubt me??

I am Peter. I want more than anything to walk out on the water and trust Jesus with all I have. And there are times where I am so focused on Jesus that I am walking on the water but then I get distracted and I become busy and take my focus off of Him and I start to sink. But I am so grateful that God always always always catches me when I fall. He has called me out on the ocean to trust that He has a bigger plan to use me and I am excitedly jumping out on the water to follow Him but I can guarantee that I will fail time and time again and He will have to catch me.

Jesus,

Thank you so much for catching me when I fall. Thank you for always pulling me back out on the waters. Thank you for loving me the way you do and for using me the way you do Jesus! I pray for everyone reading this that they will set their focus on you Jesus and that they will trust you enough to walk out on the water towards you.

Prayer Requests:

-Adjustment back to the US both physically with jet lag and also with culture shock

– Pray for a good, productive time during debrief and that we will be able to stay awake for it all

-I left a major part of my heart in Africa with all my babies and as excited as I am to see my family and friends and start a new journey at college in just a few short weeks my heart aches thinking about how many thousands of miles are between me and all my littles. So pray that I will be able to use that in a way that will raise awareness for the needs in Zambia.

 

Thank you all so incredibly much for your constant support, prayers, and encouraging words. I would not be able to do this without you all!!