Dear Family of Friends,
24/7 Virtual Prayer for Athens Greece and Refugee Situation
Is there ever an urgency in the Kingdom of God? Panic, no. Urgency yes!
Everyone has heard of the plight of several million displaced people streaming out of middle eastern countries due to war, terror, bondage and hopelessness. The last few years has only been a yellow highlighter on an issue that has been happening for decades.
Compassion – When I was in Athens in November a secular group asked me why I was there. My answer, “Compassion…. and prayer.” “When Jesus saw the multitudes he had compassion on them because they were harassed AND HELPLESS, like sheep without a shepherd.” (Matthew 9:37-38) He continues by saying, “The harvest is plentiful the laborers are few therefore pray to the Lord of the harvest to send workers into the harvest fields.”
This passage is powerful as each word is explosive with meaning that takes us past natural expectation. I’ll focus on the word, “pray.” Like many words in Greek there are several different kinds of actions associated with our one word, “pray.” This one is to ask, beg, long for, to want.” We want laborers to be sent. The emotion attached with the word may be similar to those flying at 30,000 feet and suddenly the entire jet goes silent and starts plummeting toward the ground. The ensuing prayers are urgent and emotional coming from deep within.
This kind of response of compassion and prayer are not natural. Many people doing acts of compassion do so because the care-givers are more powerful and those giving care become powerful. Some people need to feel powerful. But I think there is a greater reason for the urgency of this prayer, it has to do with the overall well being of the Kingdom of God on earth.
The Lord is not taken by surprise nor is He trying to respond to a situation that is out of control. This idea is obvious in the pages of scripture that He is sovereign over the affairs of man. He even draws out the boundaries of nations and determines where people should like (Acts 17:26)
From one man he made every nation of the human race to inhabit the entire earth,
determining their set times and the fixed limits of the places where they would live,
But why is the present refugee crisis urgent for prayer:
- The Lord’s plan is to bring people out of darkness into light. Though there is real physical suffering and need, the greatest need is to replace spiritual darkness with the light that comes through Jesus. So many have been held bondage to fear and sin, not having a way to know the truth; now they are on the shores of free countries, many are waiting to hear good news from “friends”. A Syrian woman, after receiving the Lord and being filled with joy asked a worker, “Why didn’t anyone come to Syria to tell us about Jesus?” We all have heard that questions before.
- An opportunity to reveal the God of heaven. When my spiritual father was presented with a great task he said, “This thrills my heart because it gives us an opportunity for God to show up.” One missionary said, “I used to read biographies or great missionaries thinking I could never be like that but now I am!” She didn’t say this in pride but in amazement of the power and glory of God that was being released as she shared Christ.
- An opportunity to save the western world. This may sound like a mouthful but it is true. The affect of millions of refugees camping in quarters around Europe cries for response. The presidents and governors are between a rock and a hard place because if it is not compassion that moves them it is security and the economy. Hungry people resort to desperate means. Those joy-filled new citizens of freedom will soon decompose into the rotten slums of western hopelessness and the seeds of hate will find new life. The uprooted seedlings of poison vines will find new soil. The best possible solution would be to enable as many Christians as possible to have a front row seat and look eye to eye with fleeing captives and guide them into the arms of Jesus.
- Acts 1:8 Power. Crisis creates concerned compassionate creative cooperation…. or causes chaos! As many on the front line of this “crisis” are saying, “This is not a crisis, it is an OPPORTUNITY!” A nautical term, opportunity means, “toward the port.” It is as if a sailing ship full of precious cargo has made a long journey and can see the distant port but waits for the right wind to bring it to its destiny. The wind of the Spirit is now blowing!
- Unity. They will know we are Christians by our love for one another. We are not all the same, we are very different; our personality, call, vision, gifts, doctrinal views, etc… Recently a brother said he couldn’t work together with me because we had different visions. So we didn’t but we did worship and pray together. As the ship or western society begin to take on water, we need all hands on deck. United prayer will unleash the presence and power of God for the realization of Christian faith and bring glory to God on earth.
The launch of 24/7 virtual prayer is to pray for prayer which will release all of the above. It is to take the seeds of these five reasons and water them and watch them grow.
Feel free to invite others. Each day we will have new info posted for prayer. It will be a blessing for you and your family as well as Europe and the refugees.
Prayer for our launch day, December 15, 2015
Lord of the harvest, we declare Your glory. The oversight and orchestration power that you display is awesome! The cities of the earth are like specks of dust and those who live in them microbes, but You orchestrate the universe with dimensions and shapes indescribable. What is man that you care for Him.
Our hope is in You alone. It is not only for the refugees we cry, but for the growth of hope in the body of Christ, that we all might grow up into all things in Christ. That we would be formed into the perfect stature of the man Christ Jesus. We desire to know love and show love.
Empower us for prayer. Enlarge the boarders of faith in the unseen reality of the divine. May our prayers move heaven on earth. In Christ’s name.
- For a house of prayer to be established in Athens.
- For a possible “Prayer Summit” in Athens in January.
- For wisdom and unity in planning.
- For the kindness of the Father to be on many.
For the Lord of the harvest,
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Incredible visual of a people movement! http://www.lucify.com/the-flow-towards-europe/
Nowhere People – https://vimeo.com/144857118