JUNE 17-30 PRAYER ASSIGNMENTS
The LORD is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens. Psalm 113:4This month is usually full of weddings and graduations and family celebrations. We hope you will still take a moment to pray for the four nations that are identified for prayer this month. They have significant groups of people who have never experienced the love of God. May our prayers help to spark an outpouring of the Glory of God!
17-26 Indonesia: A spiritual conflict rages for Indonesia. Ancient and powerful occult powers seek to deny the power of the gospel, while modern Muslim stratagems to eliminate the influence of Christians have the ultimate goal of removing the presence of the gospel.
Pray specifically for the binding of these powers and for continued growth of the Church in the midst of intense opposition and growing persecution.is eroding the long-prevailing communal tolerance and religious freedom. The former regime began to actively promote this process during the 1990s. Muslims were favored in appointments in government, military and academic institutions. A massive mosque-building programme, together with transmigration of Muslims to Christian-majority areas was undertaken. Christians have become marginalized, increasingly persecuted and restricted in church meetings and evangelism. The Islamists’ stated aim is the complete elimination of Christianity in the country. There has been an orchestrated Islamic jihad against Christians – with over 600 churches destroyed by mobs. Some Christian-majority areas, such as Timor Lorosae (East Timor) and Ambon, have been subjected to outright military attacks and killings.
The creeping Islamization of Indonesia
a) The frustration of these plans discrediting of Muslim extremism and a re-examination by many Muslims of their own religion in the light of Scripture.
Pray that Muslims may seek true relationship with God through Christ.
b) The nation’s leaders that they not bow to Muslim extremist pressure, which could polarize the nation with disastrous results.
c) Christians to respond with tact, love and also firmness and in all ways commend the gospel.
Pray that fear of witnessing might be replaced by courage to share about Jesus.
d) Heartfelt repentance among all Christians for the ways they have damaged their witness by attitudes and actions of enmity and reprisals towards Muslims.
e) The 65+ million nominal and syncretistic Muslims, that their eyes be opened to the truth in Jesus, and come to Him.
Development of a missionary vision. The history and background of Indonesian Christianity is unique. Indonesians are able to make a significant contribution to world evangelization.
a) Churches to be gripped by the challenge of hundreds of unreached peoples in their own country and in other lands of Asia and Africa. The financial and manpower resources are there.
b) The sending out of Christians – individuals, teams and communities – as migrants to unevangelized areas; going out with a vision for church planting. Christians will need to be set free from tribalism, denominationalism and local loyalties.
c) Indonesian missionary agencies are increasing in number. Many are denominationally based. Most are involved in evangelistic and church-planting ministries within Indonesia, and a few have workers outside the country. Some Indonesians are also serving with international missions (YWAM, OM, OMF/CCM, CLC, WEC and others).
The work of missions has been blessed of God despite the obstacles of geography, bureaucracy and the spirit world. Praise God for the fruitful ministry of Dutch and German missions before World War II and many other international missions since then. Stand with these brothers and sisters in the battle for:
a) Visas. Tightening of restrictions on the entry, residence and ministry of missionaries is making entry more difficult.
Pray that those the Lord wants in the country may obtain visas.
b) Innovative ministry alternatives for those seeking to live out a committed Christian life and witness in Indonesia – as business professionals, teachers, students, etc. Pray for effective cooperation among those focused on incarnating the gospel among unreached peoples.
Pray also for the calling of new workers from within and outside Indonesia.
c) Missionaries who are serving in animistic areas of West Kalimantan and Papua, where the young churches are developing to maturity. Church/mission relationships are an area that must be covered in prayer.
d) The great lack of missionaries in Sumatra, Nusa Tenggara and Sulawesi to be filled.
Pray that no island may remain unserved by national or international gospel workers.
e) The wide variety of international mission organizations working in Indonesia. Major ministries include teaching, theological training, assisting in the training of Indonesian missionaries, development work and supporting Indonesian media ministries such as literature and radio.
Pray for more Asian missionaries to come to Indonesia.
27-29 Iran: The Islamic revolution has lost its glitter. The legacy of bloodshed, cruelty, injustice, extremism and economic deprivation has discredited the conservative religious leaders and the Islam they promote. These leaders react with repression, restrictions and abuse of human rights because they control the police and army and manipulate the justice system. Pray for political change and a government that is truly accountable to their people and which respects human rights.
The majority of the wider Christian community is from the traditionally Christian Armenian and Assyrian communities which are isolated cultural and language islands in a Muslim sea. Their existence has been tolerated, but fear, job discrimination, uncertainty, arbitrary arrests, interrogations, enforcement of Islamic dress for women, and Islamic religious education for children have provoked the emigration of a large proportion of these communities.
Pray for a work of the Holy Spirit in these churches that the lives of Christians might radiate the glory of Jesus.
Protestant Churches were generally small and struggling before the revolution. The traumatic changes and suffering that followed gave them a brief period of renewal, outreach, literature distribution and many converts. Barriers between Presbyterians, Anglicans and Pentecostals were broken down. The 1990s were a time of severe persecution. Spies infiltrated congregations, and church buildings were seized or closed. Seven Christian leaders were martyred and others have had to flee for their lives.
a) Courage and fortitude under persecution such that their enemies are won for Christ.
b) Wisdom, boldness and protection for all in leadership.
c) Adequate income for Christians who are increasingly impoverished. Emigration is a solution, both for pressured Christians and the Muslim persecutors, but their vital witness in needy Iran is lost.
Pray that believers may break through this economic pressure and resist the temptation to leave.
d) Supernatural deliverances and fruitfulness for all MBBs. Many are forced to meet together secretly or are unable to gather with other believers. Any underground church meetings are actively sought out and worshippers punished.
e) Churches outside Tehran which have suffered more. In cities such as Shiraz and Isfahan the witness has been decimated. Pray for new light to shine in every city of the land. There are 178 towns and cities but just a handful of local churches.
Pray for leaders with vision and courage for planting new groups to be raised up.
Missions are not free to minister in the land but some tentmaking opportunities arise and tourism is actively encouraged. Pray for both Iranians and expatriates working among Iranians in Europe, North America and Australia.
Pray that the door to Iran and its unevangelized millions may open once more.
Pray also that agencies around the world may pray, plan and network together with Iranian believers in preparation for that day.
30 Iraq: Until 2003, Iraq was ruled by the harsh dictatorship of Saddam Hussein. Following the 2003 invasion of Iraq by a US lead coalition, the country has had coalition forces facilitating the establishment of a free government (set to be fully constitutional summer 2006). However, looting, Sunni insurgent attacks, and sabotage have undermined efforts to rebuild the economy.
An insurgency against the Iraqi Transitional Government and Coalition forces is primarily concentrated in Baghdad. Fear of race killings and lack of government protection is driving over a million to Syria and Jordon. ¼ of the middle class has left Iraq already because of frequent racial killings on the streets and in schools. The Sunni Arabs have traditionally repressed the Shi’a Arabs and Kurds and now carry out violent attacks.
We’ve reached the half-way mark for this year and it is the perfect time to stop and give God praise for answered prayers.
We continue to press forward in faith believing for increased opportunities to see a Move of God in our world. Thank you again for your consistent time spent praying for the people of the earth who have yet to hear the good news.
Numbering less than 200,000, Iraqi Christians have endured overt discrimination in recent months, ranging from death threats, to graffiti, to brutal assassinations. They are especially worried about backlash from Muslim fundamentalists. One church have hidden all they have so that they can flee within 30min. “Prayers are all we have left,” said one member.
Please pray for their immediate and ongoing protection.
Pray for our troops that are currently serving in Iraq and all other areas of conflict around the world.
Blessings,Lane M. Holland, M.Div.
Mission Info Bank. Used by permission.
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