National 24-Hour Prayer Watch 7/24

A Changing Future 

The major changes occurring in our world do not surprise us. They are often linked to the news of constant wars, storms, floods and epidemics. They affect how we think or what we believe or fear. In Taiwan it is the threat of war with China that is stirring up many to pray for protection over their land as well as for revival, unity, and the need to repent. Churches there have joined across denominational lines to pray, including praying for China. When in Australia our religious freedoms are being challenged there is the need for unity between churches. Eugene H. Peterson challenges us. “A primary task of the community of Jesus is to maintain this lifelong cultivation of love in all the messiness of its families, neighbourhoods, congregations, and missions. Love is intricate, demanding, glorious, deeply human, and God-honouring, but — and here’s the thing — never a finished product, never an accomplishment, always flawed in some degree or other.” As we look back let’s remember the ways God has done great things for our nation and those who have helped guide us on paths of righteousness. It is easier to be aware of the damage that has been done in the past by bad laws and the ways current laws are continuing this damage. Dag Hammarskjold challenges us “For all that has been – Thanks! To all that shall be –Yes!”

The issues we face, the battles we fight, are real, but they are not the only reality.  The Lord says “Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.” (Is 43:19) Our gratitude can turn what we have into sufficiency. Our thankfulness can help make sense of our past, bring peace for today, and create a vision for tomorrow. The Lord has promised that when nations obey Him fully and keep His covenant, then they will be His treasured possession. (Ex 19:5) Let’s trust God to do a new thing in our nation remembering that those who honour God He will honour (1 Sam 2:30)

Let’s pray, including what the Lord puts on your heart to pray:

*   For our politicians to create more laws that will truly work within the context of a law of love.

*   To give God the glory for the great things He has done in our nation in the past and thank Him that He will do great things again as we learn to trust Him more.

*   That we will be transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord. That with unveiled faces more and more of us will contemplate the Lord’s glory. (2 Cor 3:18)


Students Struggling with Violence, Anxiety

Young children are losing control and hitting out at teachers, while older students are struggling with anger management and mental health issues because they could not practice key social skills when schools shut during the COVID-19 pandemic. Their difficulties are turbocharging anxiety, depression and technology abuse, a panel of top psychologists and educators have found after examining the impact of the pandemic on education after the federal government omitted school closures from its COVID inquiry. Many schools across the nation switched to remote learning for seven weeks in 2020 and for just over three months in 2021. During the rest of the pandemic years, schools had strict rules that disrupted learning and social interaction, such as banning different cohorts from mixing. Dr Greg Elliott, who runs wellbeing services for 45,000 students in more than 80 schools, said children missed out on important steps in their social development. “The rates of assaults on teachers in early stage one, so kindergarten and year one, has increased dramatically,” he said.

Adolescent psychologist Michael Carr-Gregg said “emotional self-regulation is out the window” after students were unable to develop skills in anger management, conflict resolution, relationship forming and problem solving. As a result, “I’m seeing elevated rates of anxiety and depression and a whole range of mental health challenges, including deliberate self-harm and eating disorders,” he said. School closures also led to a truancy crisis and increased rates of school refusal. Education Minister Prue Car, who was in opposition during the pandemic, said the decisions were based on the best possible expert advice at the time, and that the government is “serious about putting counsellors in schools”.

Please pray:

*   For all children affected by the school closures during the pandemic. Pray they will receive the help they require to overcome the mental health issues they now face as a result of decisions inflicted upon them by Governments, educationalists and others during that time.

*   Giving thanks that psychologists and educators are coming to understand the damage that was done to young lives by decisions made (in good faith) at the time. Pray that the lessons they are uncovering as they undertake their research will be used to formulate suitable policies if and when the next Pandemic arises. 

*   For School teachers whose role it is to educate such children. Pray for them to be given patience, wisdom and love in their interaction with their students.


South Australian Premier Peter Malinauskas Kills off Landmark South Australian Gender Dysphoria Inquiry

The South Australian Labor Party has refused its MPs a conscience vote on whether to hold the nation’s first parliamentary inquiry into the treatment of young people with gender dysphoria, thus effectively killing off the possibility. Several members of the socially conservative South Australian branch of the ALP were ready to support the motion by independent MLC Frank Pangallo for an inquiry amid a major increase in the number of young people transitioning in SA.  This is the third time in a year that a proposed inquiry into the issue has been killed off. Pushes by Federal member Pauline Hanson and ousted Victorian Liberal MP Moira Deeming to hold an inquiry both failed to win parliamentary support. SA Premier Peter Mailinauskas said that a parliamentary inquiry would be highly political and would perpetuate culture wars. He also said that the conscience vote is a “precious tool” and has never been used before by an Upper House select committee. Mr. Pangallo said he had “never seen such a cop-out by a political leader.”  “For the Premier to say parliament has no place inquiring into this area is either utterly naive or disingenuous. I suspect the latter,” Mr. Pangallo said.

Please pray:

“Abuse, accidents, opposition, bad breaks.  I just let Christ take over!  And so, the weaker I get, the stronger I become.” 2 Corinthians 12:10

*   Pray for MLC Frank Pangallo and for those SA Labor party members who were ready to support his motion to hold an inquiry.  Pray that they continue to advocate for young people at risk from controversial medical treatments.

*   Pray that more MPs around our country will continue to question these treatments and push for inquiries.

*   Let’s keep praying and keep depending on Christ to “take over”.  Less of us and more of Him!       


Praying for Issues in the News

*   Senior executives of some of our largest companies are experiencing hostile environments that have resulted in a number of them standing down or being removed from their positions for varying reasons in recent days. The business world is under pressure as a result of moving away from concentrating on core business to being involved in political and woke issues which are of little concern for their customers and staff. Please pray that those chosen to replace them will return the affected companies to a less woke, more conservative, position concentrating on customer service and the best interests of their shareholders.

*   The arrival of a boat carrying asylum seekers from Bangladesh and Pakistan on to the Western Australian coast has reignited debate on Australia’s border policy. Please pray for the destruction of the business of people smugglers, for strength in the decision-making processes of our Federal Government so that our borders are protected against those seeking to enter our nation illegally, ahead of those without the financial capacity to pay people smugglers, who are in fact usually more genuinely needy, and who seek to enter through our official refugee channels.


Praying for our Nation

This week let us hear the call of God to “return to me with all your heart, with fasting, weeping and mourning”. (Joel 2: 12) Let us meditate on this word and ask what that means for me and our nation and how do we respond to it both personally and corporately.

 Source: Australian Prayer Network

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