“Oh brothers, pray. In spite of Satan — pray. Spend hours in prayer. Rather neglect friends than not pray. Rather fast, and lose breakfast, dinner, tea, and supper — and sleep too — than not pray. And we must not talk about prayer, we must pray in right earnest. The Lord is near. He comes softly while the virgins slumber.”
–Andrew A. Bonar
We begin with prayers for all those affected by the bombings in Boston and the explosion of the plant in West, Texas. God have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord have mercy.
- 1-Minute Devotional thought:
(Luke 11:2) And he said to them, “When you pray, say: “Father, hallowed be your name.Your kingdom come.”
When Jesus tells us to pray “hallowed be your name,” He teaches us to do two things simultaneously.
First, proclaim that God’s name is holy. God is holy and His name reflects all that He is — His attributes and actions — who He is! Isaiah 6:1-8 reveals God’s holiness in full-splendor, with Isaiah seeing a vision of the “holy, holy, holy” Lord. It unraveled Him. The Lord’s holiness does not ebb and flow. It knows no variation. His holiness reflected in the lives of His people, however, does have varying degrees of “shininess.”
Second, petition God that His holiness would shine with great radiance in your life. His salvation brought a purification to your soul, and that inner purity can and should be reflected outwardly in acts of righteousness and moral purity. Again, Isaiah 6 reveals this as the prophet Isaiah confessed his impurity and the impurity of the people. Then, his lips were purified by the hot coal.
As a result, mission sprung forth — Isaiah signed up to be a spokesman of the Word of the Lord.
Proclaim the holiness of God. Petition God for greater displays of holiness in your own life.
“Hallowed be Thy name”
- As citizens of the City of Man: Pray for police officers and other members of “the executive branch” …those who execute the laws of the land. We have all been reminded in the last week — because of the tragic events in Boston — just how dependent we are on people who are (mostly) strangers to us to do heroic and brave and life-sacrificing actions on our behalf. They preserve life and defend the laws of our nation — and we should be more diligent to pray for them and to thank them.
- Pray for the pro-life message. Continuing on as we were praying last week, pray that people would have their eyes opened to the atrocity of abortion through the news reporting of the trial of Kermit Gosnell.
- Pray for the Reformed University Fellowship (RUF) ministry taking place at Indiana University — led by Elbert Mcgowan:
Elbert is originally from Jackson, Mississippi. He left Jackson in order to attend college at Alabama A & M University (Huntsville, Alabama). He graduated from A & M with a degree in Mechanical Engineering. After working with General Electric Aircraft Engines (Cincinnati, Ohio) for four years, he married his wife Karen and they moved back to Jackson so that he could attend Reformed Theological Seminary. While in Jackson, he served as an intern at Redeemer Church for three years and during his final year of seminary he began laboring at Jackson State University to start RUF. He and Karen have one daughter, Karis, who was born in July of 2006.
- Using the new 2013 “watchlist” produced by Open Doors, we pray for the persecuted Christians of a different country each week.
Teachers/parents, consider this a great way to introduce geography into the weekly lessons. Show students where the nation is, then pray for Christians in that place.
This week we pray for the Christians of Pakistan, which ranks No. 14 on the watchlist:
Christians are caught between Islamic militant organizations, an Islamizing culture and a weak government with a military complicit in fuelling Islamic militants. The Rimsha Masih case prompted a debate on blasphemy laws, but others still face charges and extremist groups continue to incite hatred for Christians. Many persecuted Christians are uneducated manual workers who suffer unfair treatment from employers. Muslim men continue to sexually assault underage Christian girls. Opening a new church building is virtually impossible and emigration of Christians continues. Pray:
- Praise God that the laws of Pakistan give Christians considerable freedom to run established churches
- Give thanks that the Christian population is growing and a steady but significant trickle of Muslims are joining churches
- For imprisoned Christian Asia Bibi, sentenced to death on blasphemy charges.
- Prayer for the nation – focusing this week on the state of Hawaii.
- In 2013, we will pray together by name for Christians in 50 nations, Christians in all 50 states and all the presbyteries of the Presbyterian Church (USA), Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC), Presbyterian Church in America (PCA) and the emerging new Reformed body, ECO: A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbytreians. You are encouraged to add specific pastors, lay leaders, congregations, missionaries, new church developments and other ministries to the list by posting a comment to the blog. (Please do not publicly post the names of missionaries serving in contexts where exposing their identity would cause them harm or bring harm to those they serve in Christ’s name.) Let us kneel before the Father and ask His will be done.
- Prayers for the PCUSA: Pray for the presbyteries of the Synod of Alaska-Northwest: Alaska, Central Washington, Inland Northwest, North Puget Sound, Olympia, Seattle, and Yukon.
Prayers for Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC): the Mid-America Presbytery (Dexter Kuhlman, stated clerk).
- Prayers for the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA): the churches of the Westminster Presbytery.
- Prayers for ECO: A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians.
- Prayers for The Fellowship of Presbyterians.