A Door of Hope
In the same way that the Israelites forgot God and worshipped other gods, Australians have forgotten God and are worshipping other gods. The Lord told the Israelites that He would punish them, lead them into the wilderness but then win them back by speaking kindly to them. He would make the Valley of Achor (Trouble) a Door of Hope. He longed for them to call Him ‘my husband’ and betroth themselves to Him in righteousness, justice, love, compassion and faithfulness, and to acknowledge Him as Lord. (Hosea 2:13-15 & 19-20) Our nation has been worshipping other gods. We have forgotten the Lord and the way He can make a Valley of Achor a door of Hope. As a clue to the way the worship of other gods is being more incorporated into the way we are functioning we note at the coronation of King Charles there will be, for the first time in 1,000 years, active involvements from members of religions other than Christianity and the Coronation Liturgy will include active roles for people of many different faiths.
We see the climate changing and forget it was God who created it and controls it, but recognise we have some part to play. We try to make men and women equivalent and forget God created us male or female. We feel past rules of life are no longer appropriate or valid, so we replace them with ones which have helped to create mental health issues, confusion, and feelings of hopelessness, and uncertainty. Some of these can lead to feelings of lack of fairness or lack of equity or discrimination. We can feel unfairly treated in relation to our gender, race, or cultural background. We can feel lonely or worried about not having a safe place to live. God wants us to come back from our emotional wilderness and give us a Door of Hope, but we need to repent, acknowledge Him as Lord and God and experience more the reality of His righteousness and justice, love, compassion, and faithfulness.
* For our new king Charles to be true to the promises he is making to govern faithfully with justice and mercy, to uphold the Gospel and maintain the integrity of the Church. That the leaders in our nation will govern faithfully with justice and mercy. That they will also choose to uphold the Gospel and preserve the integrity of the church in our nation.
* That Australians repent and then experience the Lord turn a Valley of Trouble into a Door of Hope. That we, as a nation, change the direction our lives are taking and who we trust and believe in.
* Thanking God when we, as His people in Australia, who are called by His name, humble ourselves, and pray, and seek God’s face, and turn from our wicked ways; then will He hear from heaven, and will forgive our sin, and will heal our land and replace a valley of trouble with a door of hope.
Praying Against the Sin of the World
When we consider the image of Christ in the tomb being tended by angels, we am reminded of how upending the death of Jesus was in heaven. The angels mourned. The Father ripped his garment — the curtain of the temple — in His expression of mourning. And we mourn also. But the mourning is not just for the suffering of Jesus. It is not just for His death, for we know He rose again and lives forever enthroned in heaven. No, the angels, the Father, we — we mourn the terrible pain and evil of sin. Should we ever be tempted to take lightly the effect of sin — our sin, the sin of the world — we need only to remember Jesus and His suffering to measure the price of sin.
Let us pray for:
* a clear recognition of the reality of sin to come to the people of our nation so that change can begin, firstly in personal lives and ultimately across the nation as a whole.
* a clear recognition that sin is the root of all evil, and until it is dealt with nothing will work, will be revealed by God to all Australians thus introducing a spirit of repentance into our nation.
* a clear recognition that continuing to do things our way instead of following the teachings of Jesus is a sure recipe to a life of pain, suffering and hopelessness.
Praying for our Youth
The latest Mission Australia Youth Survey questioned more than 18,000 people aged 15-19. The survey found that their greatest concerns are about the environment, followed by equality and mental health. Last year’s extreme weather influenced the response with 51% naming the environment as one of the most important issues in Australia, up from 38% the previous year. Climate change concerns have led to thousands of young people participating in youth-led strikes and protests across Australia. More than one third of young people said that equity and discrimination was an “important national issue” and more than a quarter of those surveyed said they had been unfairly treated in the past year due to their gender, race/cultural background or mental health.
Mission Australia’s CEO, Sharon Callister, said the survey also revealed that one in 10 young people were worried about having a safe place to stay, or spent time away from home, because they did not feel safe there. She urged Australians to consider what impact the recent events, including the pandemic and natural disasters, have had on young people.
“So justice is driven back, and righteousness stands at a distance; truth has stumbled in the streets, honesty cannot enter.” Isaiah 59:14
* Pray for those of our young people who are being told untruths and filled with fear for their future and influenced to protest and demand results. Pray for truth to prevail, however unpopular it may appear.
* Pray for our youth who do not feel safe or welcome at home, for whatever reason. Pray for youth workers and carers and parents, for wisdom and honesty and love.
* Pray that through all this confusion and trouble these young people, who hunger for the truth and who ask questions, will meet Christ in new and surprising ways.
Praying for Issues in the News
* With the crowning of King Charles this weekend a new chapter in the Royal Family’s relationship with Australia begins. Whilst some want Australia to become a republic the majority (according to the last referendum on the subject) still are happy to swear allegiance to the crown. Let us pray for our new King and also prayer that his coronation is a clear witness to those who watch of the Christian history behind the line of authority in our nation.
* The Federal budget will be handed down this coming week. Please pray for the Treasurer as he releases the budget which no doubt will contain both handouts to those suffering as a result of cost of living pressures, and increases in costs in some areas to provide the funds to make those payments. Pray that all Australians, including media commentators will look at the budget in the light of what is best for Australia as a whole and not what is best for themselves, as we seek to overcome rampant inflation, cost of living pressures and rising health and aged care costs.
Praying for Others
This week let us pray for Iraq. Praise God for the opportunities Iraqi believers have received to share the gospel with others. Pray that the message of the gospel will continue to spread.
Source: Australian Prayer Network
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