Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Praying for the Persecuted

This year, one of my very favorite things in our day has been kinda "hit and miss" lately while I struggle through morning sickness.  But when we are able to do it, it ends up being one of my favorite parts of our day! 

We have been praying for persecuted Christians all around the world!  I love this part of our day SO much, that I just had to share it with you all!

First, I signed up to get weekly updates from the Voice Of The Martyrs website (see here, the sign-up is on the right side).  So at the beginning of each week I print off the update, then every day, we read about the featured "stories", find the country for each story on the map, pray for them, and then as we spin the globe, we sing (and claim) a song like "This is My Fathers World".

I can't tell you how many times, after reading a story and praying, that as we begin to sing I end up just breaking into tears.  Sure, sure, I'm a bit emotional right now...But it is more than that.

There is something that strikes a cord so deep within me, that after reading to my boys these horrible stories of things happening to Christians all over the world, then being able to tell my boys in word and song, "But we have no reason to fear, because this is our Fathers world.  He holds it in His hands..."!

Monday and Tuesday last week, our focus was on Afghanistan.  Since we have a young lady from our church serving over there as a teacher right now, the boys already knew Joanna and about her mission.  We have been praying for her almost a year now.
(she is at the bottom left-hand side of the board)
So we read about how 10 of her friends were killed on a mission to help sick people, and we talked about how sad Joanna is about them dying, but that she knows they did not die in vain.  Trusten reminded us all that in the end, the Lord will have the victory...that this is OUR FATHERS WORLD after all!!!

It's powerful to pray and sing with your kids over issues like these and discuss the Lord's soverignty.  Plus, I love that they are learning about other countires and how to locate them on the globe!

It's also quite amusing at times to see how these story/prayer times inspire the boys:

Here Trusten drew a picture of the Christians being protected by the "bad guys"...
He explained that Jesus has put a shield in front of them-and that is just what he's been praying for Joanna, that God would put a shield around here!  Amen to that!
The "bad guys" in this story, weren't so fortunate...


Candace said...

Grace, your posts are so inspirational! I pray that when it's God's will for us to have children, I will be the kind of wonderful Godly mother that you are! You are so faithful to raise your children in a Christ-like manner. Thank you for the example.

Kris said...

I love this post...I feel like as Christians we should pray for people all over the world no matter the issues they have or we have with them in general. Most of the people around the world get mistreated and even put to death for following God still yet today...I am going to sign up for that up-date e-mail you posted and I to am going to add that to our daily schedual...I will keep your friend JoAnna in our prayers as well...Thanks for sharing this, you truly are a amazing person to read about and hear from!

Gwen Toliver said...

We love Voice of the Martyrs ministry. Have you ever used any of their children's material? It was fantastic to use along side our Galloping the Globe geography unit study - it made it so very real to read about Christian children living in difficult situations while learning about their culture at the same time. Maybe your family would enjoy it too. Thanks for this post and this great reminder!!

Cheri Bunch said...

Afghanistan has been on my heart big time lately! This is a great idea, Grace.
Hope you are feeling better! Thinking of you often!

cooperkelly4 said...

we just started My Father's World (exploring cultures and continents) we have been praying for new countries too and it can be emotional. Pregnant or not! =0) (as in, you are and I am not. =0) I got choked up just the other day. Thankfully God is just and gives everyone the opportunity to know Him. =0)
ps are doing it!

Sara S. said...

Exciting times Gracie! Love it! I love that your kids are already gaining such a big world view, and there is nothing like the prayers of a child! I can remember when your sister sent me a letter that first year that I spent down here in Guatemala saying that Luke prayed for me every night before bed. I cried when I read it, and just felt so blessed to be the receiver of so many prayers by a sweet little lover of Jesus. Although many of those missionaries and Christians have no idea that your family is praying for them, I am sure they can feel God's power in their lives even more due to all those sweet little intercessors!

Lins said...

Wow! That is crazy powerful, Grace. Thanks for making me aware of Voices of the Martyrs. I'm definitely going to check it out! Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Jenn said...

I receive Voice of the Martyrs Magazine updates, but didn't think about the e-mail updates. I going to add this to our morning Bible times. Thanks for sharing.

Raylene Nicole said...

I totally echo Candace... you are so inspirational! I hope I'm as faithful as you are to raise my kids in the Word as diligently as you do! Thank you so much for sharing your life!

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