Apologies of for the absence of a prayer focus last week. It was a combination of a problem with our mailing system and time limitations that caught us out. This prayer focus will be the last until the new year and so I thought we could use it as a time of reflection over 2011 and a time of petition for 2012.
Note: the list is simply a sample and in no way dismisses massive events that occurred but are not listed below
January to March
January Governor Salman Taseer is assassinated in Pakistan – he opposed the blasphemy laws and had defended a Christian woman sentenced to death because of them Tunisian uprising results in the of 23 years of authoritarian rule Egyptians start to protest against their leadership Lebanon’s unity government dissolves Large scale floods in Australia (Brisbane), many missing and dead Suicide bomber attacks Moscow airport
February Bahrain protests begin, inspired by Egypt and Tunisia Libya unrest escalates and civil war expected; UN Security Council imposes sanctions on Libya Sun erupts with most power flares in 4 years Earthquake hits Christchurch, New Zealand – further damaging the city after the 7.1 quake in September 2010
March Egypt appoints interim leader amidst unrest as people demand faster change Libya in civil war which continues to escalate; NATO enters war with remit to protect civilians Yemen president refuses to step down as unrest increases Bahrain cracks down on protectors with the help of the military from Saudi Arabia and UAE Syria uprising hit hard by military firing on protestors; cabinet resigns but President Assad stays on Japan hits by massive quake and tsunami, resulting in a nuclear fallout around the Fukushima Station. Thousands lose their life and property • Myanmar hit by large quake with significant damage
April to June
April Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast) civil war ends after former president Laurent Gbagbo is captured – many killed in standoff after elections in 2010. Japan continues to be hit by after shocks and nuclear damage Brazil has a gunmen going on the rampage in a school killing 12 children and himself
May Osma bin Laden assassinated in Pakistan by USA special forces Palestine sees Fatah and Hamas sign reconciliation accord
June Yemen’s leader President Saleh is injured and leaves the country for treatment Syria civil unrest continues with brutal reprisals form the government
July to September
July South Sudan becomes a nation after more than 50 years of struggle (Africa’s 54th State) Norway has gunman sets of an explosion in Oslo and then kills 68 campers
August Violence, looting and riots in many parts of Britain East Africa drought and famine causes massive migration
September Palestinians request UN membership, membership accept for UNESCO Saudi Arabia grants women the right to vote
October to December
October Greece – riots from austerity measures Libyan leader Col Qaddafi is captured and killed Tunisia has first democratic elections Turkey hit by large quake killing many in a wave of destruction
November Italian leader Berlusconi steps down as austerity measures increased Egyptian protests re commence at slowness of change
December Financial crisis dominates 2011 and continues to impact the world
1. So many lives lost in war and disaster, in famine and poor health: • Pray for those who are hurting, that they may know God’s sacrificial love - that the church may reach out and love and comfort those in need. As we celebrate the incarnation this month, let’s be present for those in need. • Pray for all those engaged in aid over Christmas, that they would be able be a blessing to those need and they themselves experience God’s love.
2. So many trapped in poverty and the numbers increase as the financial crisis bites: • Pray for the church (you and me) to increase our giving and generosity and to trust God to multiply what we bring to him • Pray that the influence of materialism would not influence families to go into debt over purchasing gifts at Christmas. • Pray for countries who in fear want to reduce their contributions to aid – pray for a release of funds, for those who make the decisions to hold true to our responsibility to give to those in need. • Pray for the Micah Challenge campaign as it launches its campaign calledEXPOSED this month. Pray that many would mobilise and support the campaign
3. Governance: • Pray for leaders that their eyes would be opened to the need for integrity and care of the people they have been appointed to govern • Pray especially for leaders in the Arab world who are con fronted with the unrest of discontent – pray that they would take the tough decisions to change and be more accountable, reducing the needless loss of life.
4. 2012: How we long for God to move in power this coming year. Change starts with you and me: • Pray that we would take hold of all that God has for us as the body of Christ • Pray for us as Micah Network – that God would lead us into what we should focus on and prioritise and that we would learn to love with greater depth and action. • Pray for the Global Triennial Consultation in September 2012 – that this would be a time to fellowship and hear from God, to mobilise and support one another.
Spend time just seeking God for all that he brings to your heart to focus and pray for
Christmas and New Year
Thank you Lord for all you have blessed us with this year. We continue to marvel in your faithfulness and we revel in your love. There have been some tough times this year, Lord, times we have doubted you and wondered about what is going on, times of pain and loss. Help us in our unbelief. Help and guide us Lord to a Royal Priesthood in the coming year as we long for your Kingdom to come and your will to be done. Here we are Lord – send us!
Have a blessed and inspired Christmas and New Year!