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Micah Challenge Prayer, Friday 17 October 2008

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Thank you for sharing and praying with the worldwide Micah Challenge community. We hope this email is challenging, inspiring and spurs us on!

Please note: there will not be a prayer email next week. Thank you for your understanding.

Reflection

‘We close our eyes, trying to protect ourselves from reality, to protect our heart at any price. Reality is rather ugly. That’s why we prefer to shield our ignorance and to build our own calm on the sand of indifference. On the other hand, many of us open our eyes to reality only to become “consumers” of the unfortunate world we live in. On this level, we human beings act as clients of the horror and misery that the media offers as entertainment.

So what then do we do, surrounded by the world and its unending anguish? Should we open or close our eyes to the news of wars, poverty, climate change or food crisis that flood our daily lives? Jesus offers us an interesting alternative. He invites us to SEE.’

In Luke 10: 25-36 Jesus tells a story promoting mercy and action ‘that does not allow us to pass by the suffering. This mercy does not stop at sensitivity, it is a mercy laden with fruit.’

This excerpt is from the Micah Sunday bible study guide written in Latin America. The guide is divided into three parts and offers a detailed general bible study outline, but also reflections and activity suggestions for a youth meeting and a children’s class.

The guide can be downloaded for free at http://www.micahchallenge.org/english/do/calendar/MicahSunday/

Prayer


Let us pray:

  • From the Micah Sunday bible study guide: ‘Through the story about the Good Samaritan, Jesus suggests that we look beyond our selfishness by making ourselves neighbors, approaching the world around us, in all of its needs and afflictions.’Lord, we pray that we will be able to look and move beyond our selfishness.

  • For Stand up and Micah Sunday activities in 31 countries all around the world. Please pray particularly for the countries and activities listed below:

    Burundi:
    ‘We will distribute seeds for beans, onions, tomatoes and cabbages to 8,000 vulnerable people affected by the drought in Gitega and Karuzi Provinces. Church leaders of 19 parishes and 74 local Churches In Karuzi Province will participate in Stand up and Micah Sunday.’ Nigeria: ‘We plan a football match on the 17th of October between female staff from some of the faith-based organisations and members of a newly formed womens’ cooperative. These women physically crush stones into small pebbles as a source of income.

    We are working hard in collaboration with some partner organisations on the plateau to ensure greater impact is made this year. So far the Nigerian Television Authority, Jos, has given its word to cover the football event for free!

    We approached the Deputy Governor of our State, Mrs. Tallen, to be on the team of the women in NGO work. Please pray that her schedule will allow her to participate!’
    Peru: ‘We are highlighting the contribution of rural women to agriculture, food security and development of rural areas. Micah Challenge wants to raise awareness amongst the population and the state authorities in the hope that this will translate into concrete programs that benefit rural women.

    We are also participating at a "Forum: Fight against Poverty and the Global Economic Crisis" to reflect on the world economic crisis and how it affects global poverty.

    We are expecting over 800 churches all over Peru to celebrate Micah Sunday.’ Zimbabwe: Pastor Netha writes: ‘
    As you know Zimbabwe signed a power sharing agreement recently. Unfortunately, this hasn’t translated into reality. We want to STAND UP and request churches to come together in five areas, Bulawayo, Harare, Gweru, Mutare and Masvingo. We want to speak out and pray that this deadlock can be unlocked and at the same time we will be putting pressure on the government that the issues of Zimbabwe will be solved.’ Kenya: Over 130 senior bishops and pastors signed a commitment to take action in their respective churches. Activities to be conducted on the 17th include prayer rallies, food distribution, clothes collection and distribution, tree planting, a peaceful march through town.

    South Africa:
    Together with other Civil Society organisations, we are planning a march in Pretoria on the 17th October 2008 at the Union building. Many churches will celebrate Micah Sunday on the 19th.

Meditate on the Statistics


As you spend time in prayer and reflection, you may like to take a moment to silently understand with your heart the focus statistic we include each week (see below). Our hope is that you will find this series of statistics a useful resource in preparing presentations.

Goal 8: Develop a global partnership for development

Target 12: Develop further an open, rule-based, predictable, non-discriminatory trading and financial system

One key success:

‘The share of developing countries’ export earnings devoted to servicing external debt fell from 12.5 per cent in 2000 to 6.6 per cent in 2006, allowing them to allocate more resources to reducing poverty;’

Greater effort required:

‘International trade negotiations are years behind schedule and any outcome seems likely to fall far short of the initial high hopes for a development-oriented outcome.’

Source: Millennium Development Goals Report, United Nations, September 2008

http://mdgs.un.org/unsd/mdg/News.aspx?ArticleId=42


Yours in Christ,

Regine and MC team


Please view all the Friday Prayer statistics we’ve used to date at Index of Millennium Development Goal Statistics.xls


Please see Index of Reflections on Integral Mission.xls


This email is
also available in French and Spanish. Please contact Regine if you, or someone you know, would like to receive one of these versions ([email protected]).