In a recent email from someone working in the Middle East, he used the phrase “these are a future-less people.” That struck a discord in my heart. How can we be praying for a people and region, yet in our hearts believe that there is no future for them.
It is true that, as we read the news and look at the internet, the stories of grief, suffering and atrocities across the Middle East and North Africa especially, are, in human eyes, overwhelming.
3.500 people have drowned in the Mediterranean Sea in the first four months of this year. Headlines are asking the question “Can Christianity survive in the Middle East?”. Countries are being bombed from the air, destroyed on the ground and millions of people are displaced.
Yes, on the surface, looking through human eyes, we have to wonder about the future for these people. What hope do they have – what hope for the children? What difference do my little candles of prayers really make?
But when we pray, we have the privilege of touching our Father’s heart for these nations and people, and seeing through His eyes a people who He loves and yearns for, that they will come to know that love. A love that offers healing, hope, reconciliation and a future. For He has promised that there will be people gathered “from every race, tribe, nation, and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb.”
He has promised a future and a hope to all who believe and call on His name.
And he has promised to us who intercede on their behalf before His throne: “Ask of me and I will give you the nations”.
So let us not grow weary or allow ourselves to be overwhelmed, but rather let us “Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer.”
Our one little candle of prayer can and will make a huge difference to the darkness surrounding us.
Ephesians 6 vs 18: “Pray in the Spirit at all times in every prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert and always persevere in supplication for all the saints.”