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Valerie Penney /Wednesday, September 28, 2022

 

“We don’t need your money…we need your prayers”

I suppose in my heart, I’ve had to wrestle with whether my small prayers can make a difference ‘over there.’

  • I think of the unnamed woman behind the hijab or sari. She loves her family and seeks the best for them, yet she has never heard that God loves her so much that he sent his son, Jesus, to die for her shame and give her hope.
  • I think of the grandma who suffers grief when her children and grandchildren don’t have food, clothing, a warm (or cool) place to sleep. She is someone who can’t cast all her cares on the God who loves her because she still doesn’t know His name. She is powerless to lift herself from poverty and knows no Jesus-followers to show her the power of prayer.

Can my prayers help?

Yes, prayer does matter! In fact, prayer is how I came to Jesus when I was 13 and my family was falling apart. A cousin on my mom’s side, Marilyn, and another on my dad’s side, BJ, were praying for us, and Jesus transformed our family. Perhaps you’ve got a similar story of others’ praying for you before you knew Jesus?

Let’s turn to the Bible to see how it guides us to take our small view of prayer and recognize its strategic importance in the Mission of God?

The Bible on Prayer & Mission

Pray for Labourers

"He told them, 'The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.'" Luke 10:2

  • Jesus says to pray for labourers. This simple command of Jesus is something anyone can do. So, how do I put action to my good intention to pray for labourers?
    • Make it a part of your prayer time or prayer list
    • Sign up for a daily or weekly reminder text or email (see below for suggestions)

The Lord’s Prayer

"This, then, is how you should pray:  ‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread…'” Matthew 6:9-11

  • Whenever you hear, read, or recite the Lord’s Prayer, pray that His name will be hallowed in all nations, and that daily needs will be met among the most vulnerable.

Jesus’ Return

"And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come." Matthew 24:14

  • Jesus says that once all people groups have heard the gospel, then he will return.

Dreams & Visions of Jesus

“ ‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.” Acts 2:17-18

  • Pray for dreams and visions of Jesus so the unreached will seek Him out. After all, on the Day of Pentecost, Peter repeats Joel’s prophecy that “your young men will see visions and your old men dream dreams”.

Pray for New Believers  

"Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ." Romans 10:17

  • Pray for God’s word to reach those seeking Truth and for new believers in every people group globally, after all, faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.

But how?

Last month, I found myself in a very non-touristy destination in Asia, asking what it is to pray for the least reached and most vulnerable of our world? Sheeti (our translator) said it most succinctly, ‘M’am, we don’t need your money, we need everything. The best you can do for us is to pray and our God who knows our needs will provide.”

Challenge

Choose one people group to intercede for or pray more generally for each one.

Become more informed

  1. Joshua Project: People Groups of the World | Joshua Project This treasure of research on all people groups, and the progress with those still unreached, will provide specific challenges to pray into. Focus on a country of your passion, and bring the needs to God.
  2. Prayercast | Home This site offers 3-5 minute prayers, prayed by national believers over images of their region, country or city. Pray with them as they intercede for God to move.
  3. Home - Finishing the Task Rick Warren has a new role as CEO of Finishing the Task, a consortium of organizations seeking to get the gospel to all people groups around the world. Download the family or church devotional guide and use it this week.

Take a deep dive and read a book

  1. A Third of Us: What It Takes to Reach the Unreached: Newell, Marvin J.: 9781645084037: Amazon.com: Books This inexpensive book walks through scripture’s invitation to be on mission with God. It ends with a powerful Manifesto that I still cannot read dry-eyed. Well worth the read.
  2. The-End-Book.pdf This free download is written by the former General Superintendent of Sri Lanka and current World Assemblies of God prayer coordinator. Prepare to be humbled by the global church’s commitment to prayer.

Join global prayer monthly for our Muslim friends

  1. Call to Prayer - Monthly Gathering | Missio Nexus. This organization is known for offering excellent conferences and online webinars. This time they are offering monthly prayer on Sunday afternoons at 3pm ET throughout the year, culminating with Ramadan.

Our Prayers DO Matter

Jesus is interceding for us, and we have the incredible privilege of joining Him in prayer for the least reached and most vulnerable around the world. The Father’s heart is for all his children to know his boundless love. Our prayers do matter!

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Valerie Penney serves on the Simply Mobilizing National Coordination Team as the Atlantic region coordinator, and works for Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada International Missions, equipping leaders globally. She and her husband Fred found themselves living in Newfoundland in 2018, back to the community where Fred grew up. On a free afternoon, they may be found hiking the East Coast Trail or Face-Timing with their three granddaughters.



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