Pray for Unification of Korea
Thank you for joining us this month as we take up “The Invitation” and join together with thousands of YWAMers from around the world as we pray and hear from God. This month we will be praying for the Unification of Korea. Topic suggested by: David Cole in New Zealand. Prayer content from: a 21-day prayer guide from YWAM Korea.Photo from Pyongyang, North Korea by Thomas Evans on Unsplash.com The division of Korea in 1945 was supposed to be temporary. Unfortunately, this artificial separation between families has now lasted 70 years. A great cultural and economic divide now exists between North and South Korea. The people of North Korea have suffered greatly under a regime that denies them basic human rights. Many Koreans in both countries long for unification, and many Christian leaders have sensed God giving them visions for this. Please join the prayer day called The Invitation as we pray for unification of North and South Korea. Please take a moment to pray right now and join us on our prayer day, November 11. As you begin to pray, hold your hand before you so that your five fingers can prompt you to pray in the following ways. Pinky finger. This is the smallest and weakest finger. Pray for those in North and South Korea who feel they are disempowered and unable to affect change. Pray for those who are poor, both in spirit and in resources. North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has recently admitted his country faces food shortages. In your heart, come alongside those who appear to be weak, that they may be strengthened in faith and encouraged in hope. Ring finger. This finger is a symbol of commitment and covenant. Pray for renewed covenants of relationship and unity between North and South Korea. Pray against hatred and fear on both sides. Pray for a process of increasing relationship exchanges between countries. Pray for those in government who might lead the way in moving the two Koreas towards the oneness of unification in ways that respect the distinctness of both. Pray for God to guide countries with an influence on Korean unification, particularly China, the USA, Japan and Russia. Middle finger. This finger is the tallest. Pray for all those in leadership and positions of influence, that their decisions would open the way for unification. Pray especially that God would raise up godly leaders who stand for God’s purposes and make decisions that act as foundations for the future. Pray for political leaders including President Moon Jae-in of South Korea and, in North Korea: Kim Jong-un, Choi Ryong Ha, Hwang Byeong Seo, Park Bong Joo, Kim Young Nam, and Kim Yeo Jung (Kim Jong-un’s sister). Pointer finger. This finger points the way. Pray for Christians to stand boldly in their calling to be those who lead others, through prayer and action, toward the good purposes of God. Pray for revival in both Koreas. Pray for protection of believers in North Korea, where owning a Bible or being known as a Christian can be punished with time a labor camp. The thumb is closest to you. You could point your thumb to your own chest. Ask the Holy Spirit to align your own heart with the good purposes of God for North and South Korea as you pray. Perhaps this hand prompt will come to mind in the days ahead. When it does, take a moment to continue to hold the two Koreas before the Lord. How We Prayed October 14—COP26 Climate Conference A YWAM team in Vietnam reported a “wonderful time of prayer.” They prayed for the hosts and delegates. “We prayed particularly for the emerging generation that they would have revelation of the God of hope as He is creator and is still in control.” Join The Invitation Learn more about this YWAM prayer day, called The Invitation, at ywam.org/theinvitation. Please let us know how you prayed at email@example.com. Please also tell us if you would like to recommend a prayer topic for The Invitation.
5 Nov 2021
Pray for the COP26 Climate Conference
Thank you for joining us this month as we take up “The Invitation” and join together with thousands of YWAMers from around the world as we pray and hear from God. This month we will be praying for the COP26 Climate Conference. Topic suggested by JP in Belgium; written by Ben Richards, Phil and Christy Summerton and team in England. Photo of YWAMers prayer walking a COP26 site in Glasgow, Scotland. In the first two weeks of November, delegates from almost every nation will be gathering in Glasgow, Scotland for a huge United Nations climate change negotiation. Called Conference of Parties 26 (COP26) it will be one of the largest international events ever hosted by the UK, with up to 30,000 people in attendance. Many world leaders, including the Pope and Queen Elizabeth II, will be there, along with policy experts, diplomats, and scientists. YWAMers have been prayer walking the site and YWAM in the UK has planned an outreach during the event. Please join with us through The Invitation, one of YWAM’s prayer initiatives, as we pray for God to use this event to bring restoration to the world. Please pray right now and on our prayer day, October 14. Pray for God to use this conference to bring healing to our world. Problems such as climate change reflect our broken relationship with God, each other, and with the land God has entrusted to us to steward (Gen 1:26). This is a controversial topic for some, but the consequences of insufficient action are serious, particularly to poorer parts of the world. Alternatively a just, practical agreement could improve the lives of many people. Pray for the delegates to this conference and also for the Body of Christ globally that we would steward what we have been blessed with, not only for our own good, but the good of the generations to come. “A good person leaves an inheritance for their children’s children” (Prov 13:22). Pray for the negotiations. Pray for God’s presence to bring diverse peoples together for common purposes. Pray for truth to come into the light, and for deception to be revealed. Pray for good translation and communication. Pray for help for poorer nations with smaller delegations to be able to participate fully and for humility between countries. Pray for reconciliation between nations and those impacted differently by changes in climate. Bless the city of Glasgow. Pray for city leaders and residents as they prepare for the influx of people from all over the world and as they organize hospitality and security–all while dealing with concerns for Covid19. Pray for the YWAM street outreach to Glaswegians, COP26 delegates and activists. Pray for opportunities to share with those who have fears for the future and to communicate the hope Jesus brings to any situation. Suggestions for Group or Individual Prayer Use the video in the letter to help you pray through the sites of COP26, or follow along with the audio in this podcast: Take Action Pray every day of COP26, November 1-12, at 12 noon in your time zone. Go to a green space, get on your knees and call out to God for reconciliation and justice between the land, humanity and our Creator. “If my people would humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land” (2 Chron 7:14). Visit this website for more info and to sign up for news updates: ywamcop26.org. Join The Invitation Learn more about this YWAM prayer day, called The Invitation, at ywam.org/theinvitation. Please let us know how you prayed at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please also tell us if you would like to recommend a prayer topic for The Invitation.
7 Oct 2021
Pray for Universities
Thank you for joining us this month as we take up “The Invitation” and join together with thousands of YWAMers from around the world as we pray and hear from God. This month we will be praying for Universities. Topic suggested by and written by John Henry, in USA.Photo of YWAM university ministry in Cartagena, Colombia As the school year begins in many parts of the world, a YWAM prayer initiative called The Invitation is focusing on universities. Please pray with us for God’s purposes for higher education. More students than ever are enrolling in universities. A newly updated study by the ICEF Monitor, the leading market intelligence resource for the education industry, shows that the number of students attending university has doubled in the past 20 years and is projected to double again in the next 20 years. The future will be shaped by these students and their ideas and practices as well as the events that occur on their campuses. Please pray for these students right now and on our prayer day, September 9. Pray for universities and students near your community, and for any institution of higher education where students you know are enrolled. Pray for those suffering from anxieties and other mental health issues. Pray for those experiencing Covid-related stress. Pray for good relationships between students and their parents. Pray for former YWAMers and other believers currently studying in university. Pray for their continued spiritual formation and active engagement in Christ’s mission. Pray for believing students to study abroad as a means to become ambassadors for Christ in other nations. Pray that stories of faith and courage on campus would be retold and published to encourage a new generation of students to join Jesus’ mission. Pray for international students from unreached people groups and creative-access nations, for the planting of campus fellowships for them. Pray that these students would be empowered to reach their own people throughout the world. Pray for YWAM’s Campus Ministries. Pray for YWAM’s University of the Nations Student Mobilization Centre (stucentre.com), which aims to mobilize university students of all nations on every campus worldwide to God’s purposes for their lives. Pray for a new wave of student interns led and hosted by YWAMers and friends of YWAM (ywamconverge.org). YWAM interns have established therapy routines in orphanages, set up working pharmacies, developed healthy nutritional plans for hospices, taught forgiveness education to refugees, and created curricula for schools. Pray for the equipping of new YWAM missionaries to universities through training programs such as the School of University Ministries & Missions (https://uofn.edu/course/a0c1600000FFWFkAAP). Suggestions for Group or Individual Prayer Take two minutes to jot down a list of former YWAMers and other people you know who are currently in university. Visit a local university and pray there. Take Action Show hospitality to international students who are far from home by providing transport, sharing a meal, or through language practice. Help students to serve and learn about issues of poverty, disease, illiteracy, impure water, human trafficking, domestic violence, drug abuse, homelessness, at risk youth, etc. Partner with student organizations to distribute Bibles and conduct Bible engagement activities. Set aside time to pray on campus and then post a video or blog about the prayer time. #PraytheCampus Join The Invitation Learn more about this YWAM prayer day, called The Invitation, at ywam.org/theinvitation. Please let us know how you prayed at email@example.com. Please also tell us if you would like to recommend a prayer topic for The Invitation.
3 Sep 2021
Pray for Oral Bible Translation
Thank you for joining us this month as we take up “The Invitation” and join together with thousands of YWAMers from around the world as we pray and hear from God. This month we will be praying for Oral Bible Translation. Topic suggested by: Loren Cunningham, in USA.Content written by: Seth Aumock, in USA. The End Bible Poverty Now initiative exists to see a Bible in every heart language made available to every individual on earth. More than 1,000 languages still do not have a single portion of the Bible in their mother tongue. YWAM is committed to help change that statistic. We recognize that the great majority of those who speak a Bible-less language are oral learners, and the Bible will be at its most impactful in audio format. YWAM is working on Oral Bible Translation (OBT) for these remaining languages. The goal is to have 30 carefully selected passages translated orally into 1,000 languages by the end of 2025. Please pray with us right now for these Bible translations and pray on the prayer day called The Invitation on August 12. Pray for 72 YWAM locations to start Oral Bible Translation training. Through this training facilitators are taught to oversee the start of new languages for Oral Bible Translation. Pray for many students to come to these programs. Pray for the training of the trainers, which will begin with a big program in September in eight locations. Pray for 33 OBT hubs. An OBT Hub is a YWAM location strategically located near a Bible-less people group. Hubs will be intentional in their efforts to reach the Bible-less people groups near their location. Pray that the goal would be accomplished of 30 carefully selected passages translated orally into 1,000 languages by the end of 2025. Pray for the new OBT school plant in Madang, Papua New Guinea this fall. YWAM Kona, Hawaii and YWAM Ships are jointly sending a team to plant an OBT school in Madang. Papua New Guinea has over 175 languages without the Bible, and is a strategic location to begin Oral Bible Translation training. Suggestions for Group or Individual Prayer Experience what it might be like to communicate the Bible orally. Read Luke 7:11-17 two times, or have two members of your group read the passage. Then pair up and each person tell the story to the other, without looking at the Bible text. If you don’t have a group, try to say the story out loud. The goal isn’t to memorize the words or to comment on the meaning but simply to convey all the elements of the story. You can take this exercise a step further by having a facilitator ask questions, first about the elements of the story (“What does Luke tell us about the boy and his mother?”), then analysis questions (“How do you think the crowd’s view of Jesus changed?”) and then application questions (“How do you respond to Jesus?”). During the next week, look for an opportunity to tell this story to someone else. Take Action Join End Bible Poverty Now Kona’s team in their monthly Zoom call this month as they pray for the Oral Bible Translation efforts. This will be on August 25 at 10 a.m. Hawaii time: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83015492807. Continue to pray for the Bible-less by signing up for the End Bible Poverty Now monthly prayer newsletter at endbiblepovertynow.com/pray. Join The Invitation Learn more about this YWAM prayer day, called The Invitation, at ywam.org/theinvitation. Please let us know how you prayed at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please also tell us if you would like to recommend a prayer topic for The Invitation.
5 Aug 2021
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Pray for the Tokyo Olympics
Thank you for joining us this month as we take up “The Invitation” and join together with thousands of YWAMers from around the world as we pray and hear from God. This month we will be praying for the Tokyo Olympics. As athletes from around the world begin arriving in Japan for the Tokyo Olympic Games, please join with YWAM in prayer for the nation of Japan. For the Olympic outreach, YWAM in Japan has joined with the Japan International Sports Partnership. Prior to the pandemic, they did outreaches and provided evangelism training in churches. Now that Japan is facing many Covid-related restrictions the focus has turned primarily to prayer. The partnership hopes to mobilize one million hours of prayer for Japan. The Olympic Games begin July 23. Please take a moment right now to pray for Japan and please pray with us on the YWAM prayer day called The Invitation on July 8. Topic suggested by Jose Diaz, in Japan. Prayer content by Marty Woods, in Japan. Photo credit: YWAM Olympic outreach in Oita, Japan; by Jose Diaz. Pray for unity of the Spirit amongst Japanese believers. According to YWAM Tokyo there appears to be a new level of openness in the hearts of the people, churches are uniting and supporting each other and ministry pioneers are rising up all over Japan. Ask God for a spiritual awakening among the Japanese people. It is estimated that fewer than one percent of the people are evangelical Christians. The national religions of Buddhism and Shintoism are closely tied to the Japanese identity, so choosing to follow a different religion can be perceived as rejecting your family. Pray for more discipleship and church planting initiatives in Japan. There is believed to be only one missionary for every 64,000 people in Japan. Ask God to guide the Japan-wide sports outreach through the work of the Japan International Sports Partnership. Within the national Covid-related restrictions some outreaches are still taking place. Take Action Participate in 50 minutes of bilingual prayer and worship in English and Japanese each day leading up to and including the Tokyo Olympics July 23-August 8 and Paralympic Games August 24-September 5. Go to: www.youtube.com/user/onfirejapan. How We Prayed June 2021 – Covid in South Asia An intercession group in Perth, Australia reported that they prayed 2 Chron 7:14 for the poor and needy, they prayed against death, they asked for miracles in the hospitals, and sensed God leading them to Isaiah 40:31, that YWAMers and others would not grow weary but would reap a harvest. Join The Invitation Learn more about this YWAM prayer day, called The Invitation, at ywam.org/theinvitation. Please let us know how you prayed at email@example.com. Please also tell us if you would like to recommend a prayer topic for The Invitation.
1 Jul 2021
Pray for Healing in South Asia
Thank you for joining us this month as we take up “The Invitation” and join together with thousands of YWAMers from around the world as we pray and hear from God. This month we will be praying for healing in South Asia. Please pray with YWAM as we focus on the suffering of countries in South Asia that have been hit hard by the pandemic. Recently India reached a peak of cases (400,000 per day) and deaths (4,000 per day). Other countries in South Asia such as Nepal and Sri Lanka are now facing Covid outbreaks. YWAM South Asia has lost more than ten staff and family members to this disease and over 100 YWAM staff and family members have been infected at any given time. Several are still hospitalized. Please join the prayer day called The Invitation as we pray for healing. Please take a moment to pray right now or join us on our prayer day, June 10. Topic suggested by: J.T. in India. Prayer content by: Elisabeth Cochrane in USA. Photo credit: Firos-NV on Unsplash Pray for our YWAM family to be ministered to by the Lord as there has been so much loss and pain. A couple of locations have lost two leaders and staff and many have lost at least one relative. Pray for the kids and spouses of those who have passed away. Pray against a spirit of fear (2 Timothy 1:7). Pray for God to give wisdom and strength to the healthcare workers treating people with Covid. Pray for the doctors treating YWAMers who are in the hospital. Pray for protection for all the YWAMers out ministering to the poor during this crisis. Many of the poor are daily wage earners and have lost their funds for food. Some people have had to use food money for medicine. We have so many YWAMers involved daily helping others. One or two locations have started Covid relief homes. They’ve also been getting oxygen cylinders out to people. Pray for basic needs of medicine and food for all. Pray for this surge to end. Suggestions for Groups or Individuals Read 2 Chronicles 7:13-14 and seek wisdom from the Lord regarding sins that need to be confessed. Allow God to show multiple layers of sin. When all sins have been confessed, pray as above or as God leads. Take Action Donate for YWAM’s basic provisions of food, medicine and medical equipment. If you would like to help you can go to ACEDevelopmentfund.org. How We Prayed May 2021 – Human Trafficking A survivor of human trafficking who is in an emergency shelter reported that she prayed for the people involved to do unto others as they would have done unto them. A woman from Canada was led to pray for very young children who are trafficked. She met some of these in Cambodia during her YWAM Discipleship Training School outreach. She sensed God prompting her to pray daily for the children’s freedom and she felt led to Luke 17:1-3. Leaders from a new anti-trafficking organization called Recover Hope were encouraged to know that others were praying for this topic. They prayed for every single person to fulfill his or her role in God’s kingdom, that no one would look away from another person’s suffering. Multiple people thanked us for inviting them to pray and committed to pray regularly during The Invitation. Join The Invitation Learn more about this YWAM prayer day, called The Invitation, at ywam.org/theinvitation. Please let us know how you prayed at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please also tell us if you would like to recommend a prayer topic for The Invitation.
7 Jun 2021
Pray Against Human Trafficking
Thank you for joining us this month as we take up “The Invitation” and join together with thousands of YWAMers from around the world as we pray and hear from God. This month we will be praying against Human Trafficking. Photo credit: Hermes Rivera Topic suggested by: Matt Peterson in USA. Prayer content by: G.K. Pierce in Poland (ankyrapublications.com). By any measure, the trafficking in men and women for forced labor or sexual exploitation is an enormous and increasing tragedy. The extent of the problem can feel overwhelming. According to Polaris Project, there are 40.3 million victims of human trafficking globally. A United Nations study showed that sex trafficking is the fastest-growing business of organized crime and the third-largest criminal enterprise in the world. Many individuals are passionately opposed to human trafficking and would love to help in some way but have no idea how. This month, you can take action against human trafficking by joining a YWAM prayer day called The Invitation. On May 13 we will pray along with Isaiah 61:1: “To proclaim freedom for the captives….” Prayer Points: Pray for survivors of trafficking. Pray that those caught up in trafficking would be freed from the chains that bind them and that they would encounter God’s love. Pray that they would heal, spiritually, mentally, and emotionally. Pray for fair and honest employers to offer them jobs and training. Pray that they would find hope for their futures and strength and grace to forgive. Pray for traffickers. Pray that traffickers and pimps would have a profound, life-changing Damascus-road type of encounter with God (Acts 22:6-10). Pray they would repent and leave the sex trade and would use their knowledge of the industry to fight for freedom of people caught in slavery (John 8:32). Pray for those battling against trafficking. Pray Galatians 6:9: “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”Pray for supernatural protection from evil. Pray for courage, wisdom from God, and a passionate heart for God and people. Pray that they would see the fruit of their labor. Pray for the Church and society. Pray against the use of pornography. According to the organization Rescue:Freedom, in nine countries 49 percent of sexually exploited women said that pornography was made of them while they were being sold for sex. If Christians at large would stop using porn, it would have a significant impact on both the pornography and trafficking industries. Consider the following statistics: 57 percent of pastors say porn addiction is the most damaging issue in their congregation (a Barna survey, 2016); 76 percent of 18 to 24-year-old Christians actively seek out porn (Barna, 2016); 68 percent of church-going men and over 50 percent of pastors view porn on a regular basis (Pure Desire Ministries); and only seven percent of pastors say their church has a program to help people struggling with pornography (Barna, 2016). Pray for anti-porn programs to be set up. Pray for a re-dedication to biblical marriages. Pray Leviticus 20:26: “You are to be holy to me, because I, the Lord, am holy, and I have set you apart from the nations to be my own.” Also pray for a commitment to “remember those in prison as if you were their fellow prisoners” (Hebrews 13:3). Suggestions for Group Prayer: Divide the group into four subgroups, one for each of the categories mentioned in the prayer points: survivors, traffickers, those battling against trafficking, and the church and society. For a moment, put yourselves into the shoes of the people you represent. Note what might motivate them and the challenges they face. Note what God is saying to you about who you represent. Pray as you are led, using the prayer points from above and what you hear from God. Take Action Spread awareness. Invite a specialist to speak at your church, school, or organization. Share information about human trafficking on social media, a blog, or YouTube. Volunteer, support, or fundraise for an anti-trafficking organization you have researched. Shop for products made by exploited people (one example is kairostraders.com). Help exactly where you are. Businesses can provide internships, training, and jobs to trafficking survivors. Attorneys can offer free services. Medical professionals can get educated on how to spot and help trafficked victims. Consider prevention. Traffickers typically target vulnerable populations (for example, homeless youth, foster kids, persons in abusive situations or poverty, etc.). Mentor and support these sorts of at-risk individuals. Recommend the use of anti-porn programs in your church. Covenant Eyes is one such program. Keep praying. A good prayer guide on the subject is called “15 Days of Prayer to End Exploitation” (kairostraders.com/collections/resources-1). How We Prayed April 2021 – Myanmar A former YWAMer of the Shan people group was deeply moved to hear that YWAM was praying for Myanmar. YWAM Bangkok, Thailand prayed for those isolated by Covid and God led them to make phone calls to those in isolated/remote areas. YWAM Yverdon, Switzerland gathered via zoom to stand in the gap for the nation of Myanmar. They sensed God leading them as they prayed. A Korean message was received regarding prayer for stability in Myanmar. Join The Invitation Learn more about this YWAM prayer day, called The Invitation, at ywam.org/theinvitation. Please let us know how you prayed at email@example.com. Please also tell us if you would like to recommend a prayer topic for The Invitation.
5 May 2021
Pray for Myanmar
Thank you for joining us this month as we take up “The Invitation” and join together with thousands of YWAMers from around the world as we pray and hear from God. This month we will be praying for Myanmar. Photo credit: Alex Gruber (unsplash.com) Topic suggested by: J.H. in SE Asia. Prayer points from: B.K. in Myanmar Mass protests have been taking place since the military seized control on February 1, following the election of Aung San Suu Kyi. Civil unrest continues and over 500 protestors have been killed. Myanmar is in southeast Asia and borders Thailand, Laos, Bangladesh, China, and India and has a population of about 54 million people. The main religion is Buddhism. Prayer Points: For the powers of darkness to be defeated by the blood of Jesus, so that truth, justice, and love can reign in Myanmar. That the resistance movement will continue to operate in the opposite Spirit to the violence. For God’s protection of all our YWAM workers and the peaceful protesters. Pray for protection for men, who are being picked up from their homes and drafted into the military. Pray for safety for ethnic minorities who are fleeing air strikes. Pray for believers and Christian leaders to not lose hope, but to continue to do good by providing help, comfort, and safety, and to be a positive witness in their grieving communities and in the jails. Pray for simple forms of Christian worship to mushroom into multiplying movements all over the country and among the Myanmar diaspora. Pray for a political solution that will not end in civil war. Suggestions for Group Prayer: Find Myanmar on a map, noting surrounding countries. Review recent news from a trusted source. Identify people that might be impacted by this conflict. Discuss what it would be like to live there during this unrest. Discuss how God might be working in the midst of the conflict. Listen to the Holy Spirit and share as a group what His message is regarding Myanmar. Take Action Follow news updates on Myanmar and continue to pray for Myanmar as a group or individually. Join The Invitation Learn more about YWAM’s prayer day, called The Invitation, at ywam.org/theinvitation. (Let us know how you prayed at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
7 Apr 2021
Praying for Tripoli, Libya
Thank you for joining us this month as we take up “The Invitation” and join together with thousands of YWAMers from around the world as we pray and hear from God. This month we will be praying for Tripoli, Libya. This month, please join YWAM’s prayer day, called The Invitation, as we lift up the city of Tripoli, Libya. In Tripoli, cafes are places where the elderly and the young meet to socialize, gossip, argue and plan. Hassan is one of Tripoli’s 1,165,000 Muslim residents, and he goes to a cafe to visit a group of friends, international students he met at university. They talk about politics, sports, and religion. Several of them are Christians and Hassan is interested in their beliefs, having never met a Christian before. Please pray for the Muslims in Tripoli, and for the growing number of Christians. Islam is the state religion in Libya. Pray for greater freedom, socially and legally, to talk about different faiths so people can learn about Jesus (John 16:33). Tripoli remains always on the edge of conflict, with ongoing violence from civil war. Extremist groups surround the city. Pray for peace (Psalm 2). Pray for cafes to become centers of discipleship, with many more Muslims coming to follow Jesus (John 8:31-32). Cafes are a place people go to exchange ideas and get to know new people. This makes them an ideal environment for discipleship. Suggestions for Group Prayer: Before praying, discuss the things you would want your Muslim friends to know about Jesus. Ask the Holy Spirit to show you who to share this with. Set up an area for prayer that mimics a café that might be found in a large city like Tripoli. Have people sit 2 or more at various tables. Before you pray, discuss what it might be like to be a Christian sitting among friends sharing your faith. Discuss what it might be like to be a Muslim hearing about your Christian friend’s faith. Assign a small group to conduct basic research on Tripoli including facts, statistics, maps, pictures and to present this information to the group before praying. Take Action Find out more about YWAM in North Africa. Find out more about the region around Tripoli at gosahara.org. Participate in 30 Days of Prayer for the Muslim World April 13 – May 12, 2021. The information about Tripoli was adapted from the upcoming 30 Days guide. This prayer movement began at a YWAM meeting in 1992. This year, the guide focuses on a different city every day. You can go to pray30days.org and get prayer guides in 40 different languages. How We Prayed February 2021 – Loneliness An individual from Jeju, South Korea was led to pray for single male ministers. YWAM Bangkok, Thailand prayed for those isolated by Covid and God led them to make phone calls to those in isolated/remote areas. Join The Invitation Learn more about YWAM’s prayer day, called The Invitation, at ywam.org/theinvitation. (Let us know how you prayed at email@example.com.)
4 Mar 2021
Pray About Loneliness
Thank you for joining us this month as we take up “The Invitation” and join together with thousands of YWAMers from around the world as we pray and hear from God. This month we will be praying about the topic of Loneliness. Family Members Hug Through Plastic During COVID-19 Pandemic This season of consecutive lockdowns, brought on by the Corona virus pandemic, has been a lonely time for many of us. Some have been living alone during weeks of home confinement. Many have been unable to be with family or friends for the celebration of birthdays or Christmas. Some have experienced the illness of loved ones, and have been unable to be physically together at that time. May this month’s prayer time offer you a sense of connection with many others around the world, all joining together to pray! Social isolation has been a particular characteristic of this unusual season. But loneliness can also be part of what we consider more ‘normal’ life. Indeed, some would say that loneliness is not just a common consequence of life in missions, but also rife in our modern societies. You have probably read something about loneliness among the elderly in Western societies, or loneliness among young people who are connected online but have few real friends, or the loneliness of stay-at-home moms, or the loneliness of single people living alone, or the loneliness that hits us even when we live in a busy city. The truth is, all of us are likely to experience loneliness at some time in our lives. Those who choose to make a long-term commitment to working overseas are perhaps especially likely to experience the distress of social isolation at some point. Someone who is relatively new to the language and culture may find it difficult to have meaningful relationships with the nationals. When missionaries repeatedly change location, or their team members change often, it can become hard to make connections that cause us to feel known by others. For these and many other reasons, even when we work in teams it is not unusual to experience seasons of loneliness in missions. Whatever our current experience of loneliness or connection, together we acknowledge that our need for friends, community and intimacy is legitimate and good. During this time of prayer, we may find ourselves invited by God to grieve the absence of this longed-for connection in this season. Ask yourself how God is inviting you to bring these unmet individual or community needs to him. Testimonials There are many personal experiences of loneliness that we could include here, and you will know of others. Since loneliness can be hard to talk about, here we quote two YWAM staff members who are willing to share their experience of loneliness. M writes: ‘I think 2020 might go down in my mind as The Great Exodus. Most of the people I was close to in my community left our location in the past year. As someone who is an extrovert and thrives within community, I felt disoriented as though my equilibrium were off. On top of these changes, we have all been navigating a global pandemic so people have gone into survival mode! I am single and a bit of a novelty because I am older than 25. Many people don’t understand my context. So here I am…alone. The culmination of this loneliness, along with the expectation that I should be able to work 24/7 because I do not “have a family” became almost unbearable.” B writes: ‘A big part of being single and living cross-culturally is the area of loneliness. We don’t have a built-in social network of family. I remember back to my days when I lived alone, and I was in a team with two other couples. It was very lonely at times. Even with local friends and other relationships, I realized that I wasn’t cut out for living on my own.” Loneliness in Scripture Psalm 27:10 begins with a statement of utter dejection: ‘My father and my mother have forsaken me,’ but it ends with the ultimate reassurance of, ‘but Yahweh will take me in.’ Loneliness is the opportunity to let the truth penetrate deeply into your heart that when the worst happens, when those who should love you reject and abandon you, you are never alone. Please join us for YWAM’s prayer day on February 11 called The Invitation as we pray about loneliness. If you only have a few moments to pray, pray for YWAMers to resist the lie that we are alone and to embrace our home in Him. And if you have a moment, please let us know how you prayed: firstname.lastname@example.org. Prepare to Pray: Before coming to prayer, take some time for self-reflection by considering these questions. You might like to journal your responses. To what degree are you experiencing loneliness in this season? Give yourself a number between 0 and 10, 0 = not at all, 10 = it is extremely/very challenging at the moment. How is loneliness affecting you emotionally (feelings), mentally (your thought life/ability to focus and stay motivated), and physically (sleep patterns, eating, exercise, general health and well-being)? How is loneliness impacting your social life (relationships with family, friends, co-workers, nationals) and ministry (ability to reach out to others)? How have you been dealing with your loneliness? What has been helpful? What hasn’t? Do you notice any unhealthy patterns developing? Consider to what extent you may need to walk through this season with the support and companionship of a godly friend or mentor? Turn your attention to the way God is present to you by reading slowly through Psalm 139:7-18. Pay special attention to the words or phrases that jump out for you. As he gazes upon you, in love, today, seeing the extent of your loneliness, what does God feel toward you? What is His heart for you? If you could picture God actually being with you today, what would He do or say? How would He respond to you? What happens for you, as you encounter God in that place? How do you want to respond? Pray About Loneliness Pray for an end to the current causes of social isolation that are leading to an increased experience of loneliness. Ask God to intervene so that meeting together in person will once again be considered safe. Pray for the ways God might use loneliness in our lives, for our good and for God’s formational purposes in us. Pray for meaningful mentoring relationships in YWAM teams, so that cross-cultural missionaries living in isolating or challenging circumstances can be supported. Pray especially for new workers to be supported well as they transition into their roles, and for those who are more established to find companions to walk alongside them. Pray for effective help and resources to be available and widely implemented in the areas of interpersonal conflict and unmet role expectations. These are both realities that contribute to a sense of isolation or loneliness. Pray for strong expressions of shared leadership throughout YWAM. Ask God to bless leaders at every level with an experience of mutual support and trust, both within their teams and with others. Take time to bless your own leaders in the area of close relationships. Pray for those in different life stages and bless their sense of belonging and inclusion in community. You could specifically mention missionary kids, including those living at home and those who have left home; single people of all ages; those who are married, divorced, or widowed; those living in shared housing and those living alone. If anyone in particular comes to mind, ask the Lord how you could bless him or her in a practical way. Ask God to show us in practical ways how to prioritize life-giving community. Acknowledge the unmet need for connection within your own community and pray for an increase of those who are able to teach on friendship and community. Take Action Consider the ways you might see loneliness as a call to intimacy. In what ways is God seeking your attention and how will you respond? Consider who could you ask to walk with you, as a spiritual companion, in this season and get in touch with him or her. Whatever your own experience of loneliness in this season, ask the Holy Spirit to whom you could reach out? Make a plan to connect with them. Pursue resources: Beyond Loneliness: The Gift of God’s Friendship (Trevor Hudson) The Path of Loneliness: Finding Your Way Through the Wilderness to God (Elisabeth Elliot) In March, look out for resources on the theme of Building Authentic Community on europellc.eu Share on facebook.com/youthwithamission, post a picture and add a comment about how you prayed. Go to twitter.com; search for #praywithywam and tweet about your prayer time/post a picture. You can also post a photo on Instagram and use the same hashtag, #praywithywam. Send an email to email@example.com letting us know how you prayed and what God revealed to you. Future Topics: March 11 – Human Trafficking Don’t Miss The Invitation: Sign up for prayer updates. Go to ywam.org, find the “Stay Connected” box on the home page, put in your email address and click “Sign Up.” Download prayer updates in a specific language. Go to ywam.org/theinvitation. (Currently available in Spanish, Portuguese, French, Indonesian, Korean or request other languages.) Join the conversation about how God is leading in these prayer times. Comment on the Facebook page on the second Thursday at facebook.com/youthwithamission or on Twitter @ywam, hashtag #praywithywam. You can also post a photo on Instagram and use the same hashtag, #praywithywam. You can now listen to The Invitation as a podcast. To sign up or listen to past episodes, go to: ywampodcast.net/prayer. If you sense God giving you a word or a direction for YWAM’s prayer, please contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org.
4 Feb 2021