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Revive

Will you not revive us again, that Your people may rejoice in You? (Psalms 85:6)

This Month: Project One Wake Up Call From Sudan A Radical Journey Prayer Focus - Algeria

2012 January


CONTENT 3

Welcome to Revive

6

Current Events

8

A Radical Journey

12

Read the Word

14

Project One

JANUARY 2012

18 Ministry Update 20 Watch and Pray

CURE International

Open Doors

Revive Magazine

Food For the Poor Gospel For Asia

Joshua Project

Operation World

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Will you not revive us again, that your people may rejoice in you? Show us your steadfast love, O LORD, and grant us your salvation. (Psalms 85:6-7)

Enduring Stories

Compass Direct

Wake Up Call From Sudan

36 Revive 40

Foxes Book of Martyrs

42

Puritan Vision

44

Bible Reading Plan 2012

Design: Domino Ministries Information is correct at press time. Visit our website - http://www.bethedomino.org Watch and Pray Watch and Pray is a prayer resource supporting the following ministries in prayer: CURE International Open Doors Food For the Poor Gospel For Asia Joshua Project Operation World Every week we support these ministries during our weekly Watch and Pray feature. These ministries are the heart of the Watch and Pray ministry. Visit Watch and Pray for for information and weekly prayer guides. Contact Information: email - whitt@bethedomino.org Revive Magazine is a publication created by Domino Ministries. Be the domino that God uses to touch the lives of others.

Would you describe your prayer time as powerful? I think if we are honest about it, most of us don’t feel as though we have a very effective prayer life. There are days when I wonder if my prayers are going any higher than the ceiling. Have you ever had days like that? Sometimes I wonder if my prayers are even worth praying. I think we all have times like that in our life. I have often heard people pray for a revival in the church, but I think in order for that to happen it has to start in our own hearts first. Have you ever just longed to be refreshed, revived? Do you ever feel drained spiritually? Revival in the church has to start within ourselves, because as followers of Christ we are the Church. I want to share a quote with you that I read a while back, that really put things into perspective for me.

“Revival is not churches filled with people, but people filled with God.”

- A.W. Tozer The Pursuit of God Revive is a magazine devoted to strengthening and encouraging the body of Christ through prayer, intercession, and personal reflection.

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Welcome to Revive It’s hard to believe that 2012 is already here. At the We need to be able to give a response for those times end of the year my wife and I always spend the month whenever they ask. of December in prayer for the coming year. The following was our verse for 2011: As the past year has come and gone, so too will 2012. The question we need to ask ourselves: What are we Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without going to do with the time God has given us this year? wavering, for He who promised is faithful. (Hebrews 10:23) How well will we spend that time for His Kingdom and His glory? I didn’t realize just how much we would be holding onto this verse throughout the year. I’m really not Several months ago I started praying for the direction sure though why that should be so surprising. Over of Domino Ministries for the upcoming year. the years we have found that whenever we pray within God’s will He has been faithful to answer. The more I prayed, the more I saw that prayer needed to be the basis of everything I do, in this ministry and As we began to pray for this year, we both sensed that in my own life. we were going to be heading into what could be one of the hardest years we’ve had to experience yet. On the homepage of Domino Ministries is a quote by E.M Bounds that says “God shapes the world by I told my wife that I wanted to pray for a “nice prayer. The more prayer there is in the world the comfortable year” but in all seriousness we are in better the world will be, the mightier the forces of preparation mode, spiritually speaking. against evil …” It reminds me somewhat of a Disaster Recovery Plan. Businesses generally plan for natural disasters. Building codes are looked at; emergency preparedness plans are acted out, restructured if necessary. Committees are formed, even jobs are created around the idea of having a Disaster Recovery Plan. It’s a good idea to be prepared. Spiritually speaking we need this same kind of thing in our own lives. As Christians we need to know where our Hope is, whenever disaster comes. We need to be prepared to share the Gospel, because there will come a time whenever people will ask us about our hope.

That quote has become a centerpiece to this ministry and the focus of 2012. Many people at the first of the year will start and quit many New Years resolutions. I’ve never been a fan of them. Most of the resolutions I ever made never lasted for more than a week. I would like to encourage you to focus beyond mere man-made resolutions and engage the God of the universe in prayer throughout 2012. Ask Him how He would have you to spend your days. Ask Him to burden your heart for the things that would burden His.

If they see us living it out, people will notice. One thing I’ve discovered is that they may not always like what they see however.

Be intentional about this coming year. It might be that you and your spouse sit down and pray about where the Lord may lead you in 2012. Maybe it’s coming up We live in a world desperate for Hope. The world will with a focus verse for the year, or it could be simply try and do anything it can to find that hope. The world reviving a relationship with Him that has been long puts all of their trust and faith into whatever fills the overdue. Whatever the case may be, I encourage you void in their hearts. to spend much time this year in prayer with Him. 3


“

Cheap grace is the grace we bestow on ourselves. Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession.... Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate. Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

“


In The Future of the Global Church, Patrick Johnstone, author of six editions of the phenomenal prayer guide, Operation World, draws on his fifty years experience to challenge us with his bold vision of the global Christian church.

The Future of the Global Church weaves together the strands of history, demographics and religion to present a breath-taking, full-color graphical and textual overview of the past, present and possible future of the Church around the world.

http://www.thefutureoftheglobalchurch.org/


Current Events

North Korea Leader - Drought may have Kim Jong II dead at age killed half a billion 69 trees North Korean television announced in a “special broadcast” that its leader, Kim Jong Il, is dead.

(from the CNN Website) As many as a halfbillion trees may have died across Texas from the effects of the 2011 drought, the state’s forest service says.

Activists Say At Least 100 Killed in Syrian Town

(from Fox News Network) BEIRUT – Syrian troops assaulting a northwest town with machine gun fire and shelling have It is uncertain at this time killed at least 100 people what his death means for in one of the deadliest Christians in North Korea. episodes of the 9-monthA survey released Monday old uprising against Open Doors said in a blog by the Texas Forest Service President Bashar Assad’s post “As the news of Kim estimates 100 million regime, activists said Jong-Il’s death is being to 500 million trees, or Wednesday. shared around the world, 2% to 10% of the state’s there have been many 4.9 billion trees, have “It was an organized different reactions. been killed by the severe massacre. The troops drought, which began last surrounded people then Some are relieved that year. killed them,” said Rami this dictator is no longer Abdul-Rahman, head of in power and believe that Although it will take the British-based Syrian his son and successor, Kim several years to obtain Observatory for Human Jong-Un, will be a leader enough data to determine Rights. that cares more for the the full effect of the people of North Korea. drought, “ultimately, He said troops on the Others fear that this Mother Nature is going to outskirts of the town transition will make life in dictate what will happen,” surrounded and fired on North Korea even worse said Chris Edgar, a forest crowds of civilians and than it was before.” resource analyst. activists trying to flee out One thing is certain. of fear they would be So far, early estimates detained. We must pray for the show the effects of the situation in North Korea. drought are numerous and widespread.

Christmas in prison for Asia Bibi, sentenced to death for blasphemy (from Asia News) Islamabad (AsiaNews) – Her only hope for the future is to return to her family, to embrace her daughters, so she asks for our prayers while praying that other “brothers and sisters” will not go to prison on false charges of blasphemy. It will be another Christmas in jail, away from her loved ones, for Asia Bibi, the Christian mother of five children, locked in the women’s prison Sheikpura (Punjab), sentenced to death by the “ black law” pending appeal, still awaiting for the High Court of Lahore to set a date. Please read the interview with Asia Bibi, and pray for her and her family.

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Current Events

Thousands Of Chickens Clinton-Bush Nonprofit Tropical Storm Washi Slaughtered, Bird Flu Gives $1.5 Million To slams Philippines Found In Hong Kong Haiti HONG KONG — Health workers here began slaughtering more than 17,000 chickens after a carcass infected with bird flu was found at a poultry market, government officials said.

(From Huffington Post) PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti -- The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund says it hopes $1.5 million in grants will help Haiti build its hotel, education and technology sectors.

The culling is part of a series of precautionary steps being taken after the chicken carcass was found to have a “highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza virus,” York Chow, Hong Kong’s secretary for food and health, said in a statement.

The nonprofit created by former U.S. Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush said Tuesday it’s given a $264,000 grant to the Oasis Foundation that seeks to train potential hotel workers in hospitality services. The group also issued a $914,000 grant to Quisqueya University to help build a new center that aims to groom business leaders.

Hong Kong officials also raised the territory’s bird flu alert to “serious,” increasing monitoring for influenza at hospitals and closed the market where A third grant for more the carcass was discovered than $285,000 will go to until Jan. 12. a for-profit enterprise named EducaTech for computer equipment, resources and training.

Afghanistan Casualties More Severe Despite Claims Of Progress

(From WorldVision) World Vision relief efforts are underway in the aftermath of the weekend storm, which killed hundreds and left many more missing. Our teams plan to reach thousands of surviving families with water, food, hygiene products, and more.

(From Huffington Post) WASHINGTON -- Despite official assertions of progress in Afghanistan, American battle casualties remain stubbornly high, and the severity of the physical and psychological wounds suffered by young Americans is actually increasing.

“The focus now is on providing water and simple foods to children and families,” said World Vision aid worker John Salva from hard-hit Cagayan de Oro. “People are walking in the streets with no shoes, their clothes muddied, carrying containers trying to find sources of water.”

So far this year, more than 5,000 American troops have been wounded -- about one third of all those injured in Afghanistan since 2001.

The U.S. battlefield death toll in Afghanistan has tapered off slightly, from 437 last year to 348 through Dec. 5 of this year. There were 5,241 World Vision relief teams soldiers wounded in battle have mobilized to provide last year, and 5,020 so 5,000 families in Cagayan far this year, according to de Oro with drinking Pentagon casualty data. water, rice, biscuits, and canned goods, as well as emergency items. 7


A Radical Journey

In 2011 I started a very short-lived blog series called “A Radical Journey”. One of the great things about writing a blog or a journal is the ability to go back and revisit some of the things that you wrote. For me it has been a fantastic opportunity to see where God was at work, whether it was by answering prayer or more importantly by not answering that prayer. I want to share part of that post with you as we begin the new year. So much in the post was lived throughout the year, and so much of it was “my plan” and my own desires, which never saw fruition.


A Radical Journey It’s a battle that we are all familiar with. One that no one is exempt from. Quite simply it is My Will vs God’s Will Oswald Chambers wrote “Our battles are first won or lost in the secret places of our will in God’s presence, never in full view of the world.” Don’t we all struggle with this? We say we want to follow God’s will for our lives, but I wonder if all we are really doing is making our own way, with our own plans and praying for God to bless what we are already doing, hoping that His will, lines up with ours. I am assuming for the majority of us, that really is what we are doing. This begs a question to be asked of us.

This barrier is very simply – My Will vs His Will. Let me ask you a question… Have you ever struggled between doing what you wanted to do, against what you already knew you should do? If you are alive, and breathing I am going to say the answer to that question is yes. Let me share with you something very crucial and important for those of us for this issue. If you don’t have that kind of struggle, you can stop reading this post all-together, but for those of us who deal with this, here is something I read last week.

Get alone with God, do battle before Him, and settle the matter once and for all. Get alone with God and fight the battle before Him. Until I do this, I will lose What if God’s will for our lives, His plan for us, isn’t the every time. The battle may take one minute or one plan we’ve made for ourselves? What if God wanted year, but that will depend on me, not God. Nothing us to do something completely and entirely different? has any power over someone who has fought the Would you stop what you are doing? Or would you battle before God and won there. forge ahead, and ask Him to bless our plans for our lives anyways? Could you give up your plan and I am at a crossroads in my life right now. There are a follow the one He has for you? lot of things before me this year. Am I prepared? How do I start? The questions get deeper. How do we even know what God’s will is? I recently heard someone say “God Surrender means I need to raise my white flag high in does have a plan for your life, and if He has a plan, I’m the air. The battle I’ve been fighting my whole life has pretty sure He wants you to know what that is.” been my will against God’s. It is time that I surrender. His plan is going to be so much greater than mine! Where do we start? 2011 begins my radical journey. The verse that has God’s plan is laid out in Scripture. The Bible. His will stuck to me like glue this entire year, the verse which for our lives has already been made known to us, has become the foundational verse for my site even, through His Word. We may complain and despair “I just wish I knew what God wanted me to do,” yet we rarely dig into His Word, to find out what that is. If we dig at all, it is for the simple purpose of finding the verse that helps to justify our means, and we dig no further than that.

Luke 5:11 – And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed Him. It is a verse that has challenged everything in my life. What did it mean for them in their day and age to leave everything they knew and follow this man. We all know how the story plays out, but at the time they did not. Yet they knew there was something very different about this man.

I am about to be very honest with you. I am struggling. I have a desire in my heart to know Him, I have the tools available to get to know Him, but there is a barrier somewhere between us. continued on next page

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A Radical Journey David Platt, in his book Radical issued a challenge to everyone who read the book to read through God’s Word through an entire year, to give to others, and to pray for the entire world. What an impossible task. On my own. I can’t do all of those things! But I am praying that through the power of the Holy Spirit, I will be empowered and enabled to do just that. I can’t do it alone, without God, and honestly it would be foolish to even try.

way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few. (Matthew 7:13-14)

The moment God reveals to you Truth, you’ll never be the same. You have to choose whether you move forward or take a step backwards.

-end-

God has revealed so much to me over this past year. I’ve read and studied more this past year than I ever have. But in doing this I have made a fatal error. I have read through all of this stuff without every figuring out how to apply what He has shown me. Without ever going to Him first, and saying “God, what am I supposed to do with this?” I read books and then file what I have been shown, away in this enormous filing cabinet inside my head. At the end of this year I have found that I am having a system overload. I’m heavy in my heart over so many things.

Despite what the world tells us, there is no middle road. As I examine my life I see just how much of this ‘middle road’ I am walking on. It’s time to step off from the middle road we have created in our culture and onto the only way that Jesus tells us which leads to life.

That was the post I had written, and for the record let me say that I did not make it very far in my reading plan. Only about 2 months. I did not pray for the world in a year either. That too lasted until February. God had another plan. I still used Operation World, in fact it was a major resources in 3 prayer campaigns that our ministry did last year. Outside of the Bible I used Operation World more than any other book, and I can say without a doubt that it has radicaly transformed everything about the way that I pray.

I didn’t read the Bible from cover to cover, yet I spent 6 months studying and teaching the book of Genesis. I am discontent with the state of things in the world, I’m sure that I learned more than those who were the church, and in my own life personally. I believe being taught, but those 6 months opened my eyes to God wants us to desire Him above all else, and that we the Word of God in such a detailed way. will not find true contentment in anything else in this world. My radical journey begins with a first step that “His ways are not my ways” nor “His thoughts like I have to choose to take. A first step that I have to take mine”. Maybe something happened last year that you every single day before anything else can begin. A step saw as a failure, but perhaps God had a different plan that leads me to for you. Surrender.

Don’t be discouraged, instead of pursuing a list of todo’s, plans, and schedules, pursue Him.

Surrender that leads me to Trust and Obedience and Faith. Every single day as followers of Christ we are called to walk in those steps. We choose whether we will be obedient or whether we will go our own way.

Perhaps God doesn’t want this year to be the year you read the Bible Chronologically. Perhaps He wants you to read the Gospels and the Epistles for a year. Spend some time in prayer about what it is, that He would “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the have you to do. It may be He wants you to just sit at way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who His feet and enjoy His fellowship. enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the 10


Come&Live

Visit comeandlive.com for a free download


READ THE WORD


Read the Word Something I have been praying about this year was about the availabilty of making Bible Reading Plans available. I believe that God may have a different plan for everyone, so I wanted to make this page a resource for you.

attention to the reading plan that we will be going through this year. I’m not sure if you are familiar with the Radical Experiment, but let me explain to you what this is.

The Radical Experiment is a year-long commitment to five specific challenges:

As I said in the previous page, I want you to spend time in prayer about what kind of reading plan is right for you. We have included at the end of this months magazine a copy of the ESV Chronological Reading Plan that we will be using this year.

To pray for the entire world To read through the entire Word To commit our lives to multiplying community To sacrifice our money for a specific purpose To give our time in another context

Here are the links to some of the reading plans that are available. It may be that you have your own reading plan, if that’s the case I encourage you to make it a priority to spend time in His Word, regardless if you have a plan or not.

Pray for the entire world: Using the resources provided by Operation World, pray together for the entire world over the course of a year.

Domino Ministry uses ESV but you are free to choose whatever translation you feel most comfortable with.

The ESV website offers these reading plans. *Chronological - Through the Bible chronologically *Daily Reading Bible - Daily Old Testament, New Testament, and Psalms

Read through the entire Word: Using a chronological Bible Reading plan, read through the entire Bible. This site will provide a Bible Reading Plan and scripture memory for each week. (Additional Bible Reading Plans are listed on the Resource page of this site) Commit your life to multiplying community: Commit yourself wholeheartedly to the local church. But even deeper than that, commit yourself to a small group that is intentionally sharing, showing, and teaching the Word while serving the world together.

*ESV Study Bible - Daily Psalms or Wisdom Literature; Sacrifice your money for a specific purpose: For the Pentateuch or the History of Israel; Chronicles or next year, look at all of your expenses as a church, as Prophets; and Gospels or Epistles individuals and as families through the lens of specific need in the world. Work to set a cap on your lifestyle *Every Day in the Word - Daily Old Testament, New so that you can free up as much of your resources Testament, Psalms, Proverbs as possible for the sake of the glory of Christ in His church, among the lost, and among the poor. *Through the Bible in a Year - Daily Old Testament and New Testament Spend your time in another context: As you are making disciples in your community, commit, as Bible Gateway offers many plans that you can have individuals and families, to give 2% (one week) of your sent directly to your inbox daily. You can find out time in Gospel ministry outside of your community for more about those by clicking here. the sake of God’s glory in all the world. A simple search on the internet will probably get you what you want. I would also like to direct your

Visit the Radical Experiment website. 13


Project One

Praying for the unreached people groups of Africa throughout 2012


Project One Praying for the Unreached People Groups of Africa Joshua Project is a research initiative seeking to highlight the ethnic people groups of the world with the least followers of Christ. Accurate, regularly updated ethnic people group information is critical for understanding and completing the Great Commission. Jesus said in Matthew 24:14 “This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.” Jesus directly links His return to the fulfillment of the Great Commission. While no one knows the date or time of His return, we do know that this gospel of the kingdom must be preached to all the nations first. Revelation 5:9 and 7:9-10 show that there will be some from every tribe, tongue, nation and people before the Throne. Joshua Project seeks to answer the questions that result from the Great Commission’s call to make disciples among every nation or people group: •Who are the ethnic people groups of the world? •Which people groups still need an initial church-planting movement in their midst? •What ministry resources are available to help outreach among the least-reached? In 2011 it’s a very sobering fact that despite the vast spread and use of technology, the growth of missionary groups, and the spread of the Gospel , that there are around 6500 unreached ethnic people groups with few if any followers of Christ. Joshua Project gathers, integrates and shares people group information to encourage pioneer churchplanting movements among every ethnic group and to facilitate effective coordination of mission agency efforts. Joshua Project compiles the work of numerous missions researchers to develop a list of all ethnic peoples that is as complete as possible. Project One is a prayer initiative focused on the unreached people groups of Africa. Each month will have a focus scripture, and each day of 2012 we will be praying through the unreached people groups of Africa country by country. We will present some information about the people groups, along with prayer points linking back to their page on Joshua Project. There are many people groups with no picture, and little to no information about them. Although we will have little to go on, these are groups that we need to be lifting up to the Lord in prayer, that someone will come, someone will share the Gospel, the Good News. Pray for an outpouring of the Spirit. Pray that Jesus would be revealed to them through dreams and visions, and that they would have a hunger to know Him, and come into relationship with Him. One Continent, One Prayer, One Year. Resources Project One Page - http://www.bethedomino.org/project-one Twitter - http://www.twitter.com/project1africa Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/pages/Project-One/105912562859849 15


Project One January Prayer Focus - Algeria The unreached people groups of Algeria are the focus of our prayers during the month of January. Algeria, a gateway between Africa and Europe, has been battered by violence over the past half-century. More than a million Algerians were killed in the fight for independence from France in 1962, and the country has recently emerged from a brutal internal conflict that followed scrapped elections in 1992.

calling itself Al-Qaeda in the Land of Islamic Maghreb (AQLIM). The group was formerly known as the Salafist Group for Call and Combat, and has its roots in an Islamist militia involved in the civil war in the 1990s. Although experts doubt whether AQLIM has direct operational links with Osama Bin-Laden, its methods - which include suicide bombings - and its choice of targets, such as foreign workers and the UN headquarters in Algiers, are thought to be inspired by Al-Qaeda. North African governments fear that local Islamist groups in Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia may be linking up under the umbrella of the new movement.

The Sahara desert covers more than four-fifths of the land. Oil and gas reserves were discovered here in the 1950s, but most Algerians live along the northern After years of political upheaval and violence, Algeria’s coast. The country supplies large amounts of natural gas to Europe and energy exports are the backbone of economy has been given a lift by frequent oil and gas finds. It has estimated oil reserves of nearly 12 billion the economy. barrels, attracting strong interest from foreign oil firms. Algeria was originally inhabited by Berbers until the Arabs conquered North Africa in the 7th century. Staying mainly in the mountainous regions, the Berbers resisted the spreading Arab influence, managing to preserve much of their language and culture. They make up some 30% of the population. Part of the Turkish Ottoman empire from the 16th century, Algeria was conquered by the French in 1830 and was given the status of a “departement”. The struggle for independence began in 1954 headed by the National Liberation Front, which came to power on independence in 1962. In the 1990s Algerian politics was dominated by the struggle involving the military and Islamist militants. In 1992 a general election won by an Islamist party was annulled, heralding a bloody civil war in which more than 150,000 people were slaughtered.

However, poverty remains widespread and unemployment high, particularly among Algeria’s youth. Endemic government corruption and poor standards in public services are also chronic sources of popular dissatisfaction. Major protests broke out in January 2011 over food prices and unemployment, with two people being killed in clashes with security forces. The government responded by ordering cuts to the price of basic foodstuffs, and repealed the 1992 state of emergency law. In 2001 the government agreed to a series of demands by the minority Berbers, including official recognition of their language, after months of unrest involving Berber youths demanding greater cultural and political recognition.

An amnesty in 1999 led many rebels to lay down their To Download this months prayer guide visit http:// arms. www.bethedomino.org/project-one Although political violence in Algeria has declined since the 1990s, the country has been shaken by by a campaign of bombings carried out by a group 16


Gospel for Asia December 2011

This month’s In Picture series is from the ministry Gospel for Asia for more information visit gfa.org


Ministry Update


Domino Ministry Update

Reading the Bible in Chronological Order Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Genesis 1-3 Genesis 4-7 Genesis 8-11 Job 1-5 Job 6-9 Job 10-13 Job 14-16

Job 17-20 Job 21-23 Job 24-28 Job 29-31 Job 32-34 Job 35-37 Job 38-39

Job 40-42 Genesis 12-15 Genesis 16-18 Genesis 19-21 Genesis 22-24 Genesis 25-26 Genesis 27-29

Genesis 30-31 Genesis 32-34 Genesis 35-37 Genesis 38-40 Genesis 41-42 Genesis 43-45 Genesis 46-47

Genesis 48-50 Exodus 1-3 Exodus 4-6 Exodus 7-9 Exodus 10-12 Exodus 13-15 Exodus 16-18

Project One

was the biggest online study that this ministry has ever been involved with, with over 500 signed up. I During the month of January we will be in prayer for the unreached want to personally thank each and every one of you who prayed for people of Algeria. An unreached or least-reached people is a people these guys (and girls) and shared your testimonies, your prayers and group among which there is no indigenous community of believing your hearts. Christians with adequate numbers There is much heartbreak in our and resources to evangelize this people group. Visit the Project One world. Sexual addictions are running rampant, but I would like to page for more information and consider joining us in our one year encourage you all, that God is still in prayer campaign for the unreached control. Christ alone has the power to heal brokenness. people groups of Africa in 2012.

Joy Unspeakable Starting in February we’ll begin a series called Joy Unspeakable. Joy is a word that is littered throughout the pages of Scripture. Yet so many Christians struggle with understanding what it truly means to have a godly joy in their lives.

“The enjoyment of God is the only happiness with which our souls can be satisfied. To go to heaven, fully to enjoy God, is infinitely better than the most pleasant accommodations here. Fathers Week’s before the study started and mothers, husbands, wives, Socks for those Without winding down, I felt as though or children, or the company of In November - December we began God was letting me know just how earthly friends, are but shadows; but God is the substance. These collecting socks to hand out to our far and widespread this issue of sexual sin is. In January, I will be are but scattered beams, but God local area Community Ministries. introducing a group/forum called is the sun. These are but streams. Our total for this Christmas was But God is the ocean.” ― Jonathan over 800 pairs of socks. Thank you EMERGENCY Groups. The idea is to provide a place of strengthening Edwards to all who contributed! and encouragement for men and women who struggle with sexual What does it look like to have joy in Website Redesign sin. your life? If you have been to the website Is your joy tied up in your stuff, your lately you have probably noticed ... Please pray for the EMERGENCY friends, and family; or is it centered something is different. More is still ministry. The topic is taboo, and most churches are simply ignoring on the person of Jesus Christ? to come! that this issue exists, and those that are aware, aren’t really sure how to Please be in prayer as we take a EMERGENCY approach it. much needed look into the deep recesses of our hearts. December finished up an 8 week More details about EMERGENCY - Whitt Madden intenstive study on sexual sin. This Groups will be coming soon. (founder - Domino Ministries) 19


Watch and Pray Operation World Cure Internatonal

Open D oors

Joshua Project

Gospel for Asia

Food For the Poor


Watch & Pray

Watch & Pray

Join us every Wednesday for an hour in prayer. Prayerfully consider any unsaved family members, Each Wednesday we will post a prayer guide on the friends, co-workers, or acquaintances. Pray for their website at 4 am. Feel free to pray as you feel led for salvation, that God will bless them spiritually, socially, the time that you feel led. The important thing is that emotionally, and pray for their felt needs as well as you are spending time in prayer with the Lord. spiritual needs. Watch and Pray is merely a guideline of things to be in prayer for. You can and should choose to pray however the Lord leads you.

Pray for Any Personal Needs

Ask the Lord to reveal new things to you, things that He wants you to notice and pay attention to. Ask God Prayerfully Consider to reveal His will and plans to you. Ask the Lord for things that are on His heart that He wants you to pray Is there any unconfessed sin in my life? about. Prayerfully consider writing down or journaling *Do I have unforgiveness or bitterness towards anyone these things, and what you sense God is saying to you. or anything? *Are there any questionable activities going on in my Read and pray through 2-3 Psalms. life? *Am I obeying the Holy Spirit promptly in all things? Pray for Leaders and Pastors *Am I confessing Jesus Christ unashamed? Pray for the Youth Pray for the nations

Consider any obstacles that may be hindering your prayer life: Every Wednesday we pray for the following ministries: *Conscious - unconfessed sin (Psalm 66:18 Isaiah 59:1-2) * Idolatry - (Ezekial 14:3) * Covetousness (Proverbs 21:13; 1 Timothy 6:10) * Unbelief & Doubt (John 16:9; James 1:6-8) * Unforgiveness & Bitterness (Matthew 6:14-15) *Pride (James 4:6) *Selfish Motives (James 4:3) * Critical Spirit (Matthew 7:1) * Ingratitude (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

CURE International Open Doors Joshua Project Operation World Food For the Poor Gospel For Asia Pray for breakthroughs in various global challenges (AIDS, HIV, Cancer, Disease, Clean Water) Pray through the Names of the Lord Pray for the Persecuted Church Pray for your spouse

* Love for the World (1 John 2:15)

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CURE International

Nolvin Cipriano Ramos Condition: Clubfoot Country: Honduras Age: 11 years old Treatment Date: 1/10/2012 After eleven years of a long and difficult struggle with severe clubfoot, Nolvin is finally making his way towards healing. Born with the deformity, Nolvin only began treatment this year. After his initial visit to the CURE hospital, Nolvin was faced with a dilemma:

Watch & Pray

attending school or starting treatment. Since his walk to school is such a long distance, crutches from the treatment would prohibit him from making the trip. Nolvin chose to wait until his vacation from school to begin treatment and is currently receiving a new cast every week until school picks back up in February. Doctors hope that the frequent change of casts will decrease Nolvin’s clubfoot and in turn, decrease the severity of his surgery. Click here to see how you can help make a difference. 22


Open Doors Open Doors works in the world’s most oppressive countries, strengthening Christians to stand strong in the face of persecution and equipping them to shine Christ’s light in these dark places.

Prayer Force Alert “Prayer is the most important, powerful, exciting and dynamic weapon that we as Christians can wield.” —Carl Moeller, President/CEO Open Doors USA Sign up to receive the Prayer Force Alert Calendar. Nepal - Nepal continues to struggle in finalizing its constitution. The prolonged political standstill may create discontent in some circles. Pleae pray for God’s sovereign hand over this and for His church to be prayerful, especially in matters concerning religious laws on faith conversions. He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his namesake. (Psalm 23:3)

World Watch List

The World Watch List (WWL) is a ranking of 50 countries where persecution of Christians for religious reasons is worst. First of all, the list covers persecution of Christians of all denominations in the entire country. The focus is onpersecution for their faith, not persecution for political, economic, social, ethnic or accidental reasons

Watch & Pray which were caused by a typhoon. The situation for the Christians was even more terrible. Emily Fuentes, Communications and Public Relations Coordinator at Open Doors USA said this in a recent blog post concerning Kim Jong il and the situation in North Korea: “As the news of Kim Jong-Il’s death is being shared around the world, there have been many different reactions. Some are relieved that this dictator is no longer in power and believe that his son and successor, Kim Jong-Un, will be a leader that cares more for the people of North Korea. Others fear that this transition will make life in North Korea even worse than it was before.” Read the rest of this blog post here One thing is for certain. We need to continue in prayer for the people of North Korea. Pray for North Korean families that were rescued from horrific situations. Pray that the Lord will heal and restore them so they can pick up their lives and will glive glory to Him. Pray for the workers in the field. They carry out projects in difficult and dangerous circumstances.

Pray for discernment, protection, strength, courage, North Korea - #1 on the WWL and wisdom for the Christians in North Korea. December was a very important month for the people of North Korea. The death of Kim Jong iI has left a lot Shockwave (Open Doors Youth) of people wondering - what’s next? The Open Doors WWL reported in 2011’s list that “the situation in North Korea during this reporting period remains horrific. There is no change in the total number of points but that doesn’t mean it’s stabilized. On the contrary, during the last year general changes in the country adversely affected the entire population, including Christians. Due to currency reforms, two out of every ten people seem to have lost their homes. Next to the economic crisis, North Korea has been hit by natural disasters. Dozens of North Korean people died in floods and landslides

Shockwave is a youth event that Open Doors is hosting on March 2nd through March 4th. Over the 2-4 March 2012 young people across the time zones and nations will unite in prayer for the persecuted, and put 1 Corinthians 12:26 into action. Over SHOCKWAVE we want to create a huge wave of prayer and ask God to build his church in the most closed countries on earth. SHOCKWAVE can be big or small, you just need to be willing to pray, we can provide you with some great prayer resources. 23


Food For The Poor

Watch & Pray

Food For The Poor organizes prisoner releases for the inmates, who live in decrepit buildings and are at the mercy of disease outbreaks, such as cholera. nonviolent offenders freed in Jamaica, Prison cells measuring 16-by-16 feet sometimes hold Guyana, Haiti and Honduras more than 30 men.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 12/21/11 In Jamaica, 22 prisoners incarcerated due to their inability to pay the required fines have been released in time to spend Christmas with their families. COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (Dec. 21, 2011) — In anticipation of Christmas, Food For The Poor released prisoners who have committed nonviolent offenses in Jamaica (22), Guyana (25), Haiti (36) and Honduras (2). They were incarcerated due to their inability to pay required fines. Eighty-five prisoners have been released in these countries in time to spend Christmas with their families. “When you visit a prison, desperate eyes peer out of the dark cells, into the light, pleading silently for help,” said Robin Mahfood, Food For The Poor’s CEO/ President. “They want to feel a connection with the outside world, to be a brother in Christ, to be prayed for – and to not be forgotten.”

Since the inception of Food For The Poor’s Prison Ministry Program in 2000, more than 1,048 prisoners have been reintroduced back into the community as productive citizens. Food For The Poor works with the prisoners before and after they are released to ensure they will not be repeat offenders. “Behave yourself, because in there [it is] rough,” said a 34-year-old former Jamaican inmate, when asked if he had any advice for youngsters outside of the penal institutions. “I appreciate the help from Food For The Poor,” he continued, “because my mother had been helping to take care of my children while I was in there, but they are my responsibility and I just wanted to come out and be a father to them.” This year in Jamaica, a total of 22 inmates were released from prisons in Mandeville, Spanish Town and St. Catherine. “All of us deserve a second chance and we have given these men and women that opportunity,” said Sandra Ramsay, administrator of the prison ministry at Food For The Poor-Jamaica.

In developing countries, the destitute sometimes have no way to feed their families other than to steal food. The consequence often is imprisonment without first appearing before a judge, or receiving a prison The 22 who were freed in Jamaica were inmates at sentence. Sometimes, by the time they are tried, Fort Augusta, St. Catherine and Tamarind Farm Adult they have spent years longer in jail than their prison Correctional Centers. sentence requires. Food For The Poor’s Prison Ministry Program is based on the scripture, “When was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you,” (Matthew 25: 31-46). The sole female inmate released from the Fort Augusta facility was a mother of three convicted of larceny for taking money from a family member without permission to purchase food for her sick infant. Mahfood visited a prison in Cap-Haitien, Haiti, this year with 17 priests and pastors. Together they prayed

Twice a year – during the Christmas and Easter seasons – the Food For The Poor Prison Ministry Program releases inmates who have committed minor offenses. Prison authorities have found Food For The Poor’s Prison Ministry Program to be so successful that they have implemented a similar program themselves. Some prisons now offer inmates jobs in the prison where they are held so that they can earn money to pay off their fines. (Pictures on Page 23 are courtesy of FFP) 24


Gospel For Asia Gospel for Asia - We are committed as a family of believers to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with lost men, women and children throughout Asia who have still not heard His precious name.

Watch & Pray for his death. For some widows, the humiliation starts when she is stripped of her colorful clothing and forced to wear a white sari signifying her new status as a widow. Her glass bangles, which previously let the world know of her marital status, are smashed into thousands of tiny shards. Her life will now be controlled by her eldest son. If she is lucky, she’ll get a tiny corner of his house in which to sleep.

Christians in Orissa Anticipate Another Riot On December 18, a group of 2,500 anti-Christians organized a rally in the Kandhamal district of Orissa to, according to their slogan, “stop Christmas.” The leader of the group has called for a strike from December 24 to December 27. No information was given about what the strike would entail. A Gospel for Asia field correspondent reported that the Christians of Kandhamal believe another riot is likely to break out. Many have left their villages and are taking refuge in surrounding areas. A storm that hit Northeast India on December 9 left many homes damaged and some people injured. Three believers, who attend a Gospel for Asiasupported church, lost their roofs, but no family members were injured. With the winter season upon them, living without protection from the elements will be difficult. Rebuilding is in process for those homes that were damaged.

Kandhamal district in Orissa was the area most severely persecuted in the attacks against Christians in 2008. Throughout Orissa, more than 120 men, women and children were murdered, and hundreds of homes and churches were destroyed. Please pray for this wave of hostility to pass without event and for the Lord to change the hearts of those opposing His children. Pray also for the believers in Orissa, that they will not fear and will remain strong in the Lord during this time. Pray they will be lights shining in the darkness and that the Lord will protect them.

Please pray roofs can be replaced with more sturdy materials that can withstand the harsh weather. Pray also for the people to be comforted during this time as Pray for Asia’s Youth they wait. Did you know that 40 percent of India’s 1 billion people are under the age of 18? The percentage Pray for Widows is similar in Bhutan, Nepal, Bangladesh and other The treatment of widows in South Asia is unimaginably countries where Gospel for Asia works horrific. When a woman’s husband dies, she is blamed

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Joshua Project Joshua Project is a research initiative seeking to highlight the ethnic people groups of the world with the fewest followers of Christ.

Watch & Pray Pray for the followers of Christ Pray for the followers of Jesus who will soon be apparent among the Filala Berbers, that they will clearly understand and rest upon the Gospel of grace, not mixing it with the requirement to do good works. Pray they will understand the need to live obediently to Christ, as a result of His forgiveness and presence within.

Pray for the entire people group Pray for the Berbers to provide adequately for their families. Pray that the indigent, the widow and orphan, may be cared for.

Scripture Focus

Berber, Filala of Morocco

“All nations you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord, they will bring glory to your name.” (Psalm 86:9)

Greek, Roman and Phoenician texts make reference to the forerunners of the Berber peoples, located in the eastern portion of Egypt. “Berber” is a generic name given to numerous heterogeneous ethnic groups who share similar cultural, political and economic practices. Contrary to the romantic, popular image that portrays Berbers as nomadic people who cross the desert on camels, their main activity is sedentary agriculture. Today, significant Berber income comes from the large number of immigrants in Europe, especially in France.

Ministry Obstacles Morocco is not an easy place for Christians to enter, and to work.

Outreach Ideas Perhaps Berbers working in Europe will encounter Spirit-filled Christians, those who seriously follow Christ, and who will be able to assist Berbers as they also seek Christ.

Visit the Joshua Project website for more information on unreached people groups. Be sure to visit their Prayer Resource page to find out how you can help make a difference in prayer. 27


Operation World Operation World (OW) is widely regarded as the definitive volume of prayer information about the world and is the recipient of the ECPA Gold Medallion Award for Excellence in Evangelical Christian Literature.

Watch & Pray Pray for the Church of Algeria. Persecution of Christians is intensifying as a reaction to unprecendented church growth; the future of the Church in Algeria hangs in teh balance. Legislation passed has made proselytism a criminal offense. A law forbidding the practice of non-Muslim worship outside of pre-approved buildings was cleverly followed by a rash of church closings. Believers face threats and intimidation by family, friends, employers, Muslim extremists and now the government. The Algerian Church has grown due to bold witness and evangelism. Pray that they will respond to these pressures with faith and perseverance.

Algeria

Pray for unity between the few Christian associations that exist. Pray for the establishment of strong groups and church leaders. Pray for the availability of resources for new churches.

During the month of January we will be praying for the Pray for a strengthening of Church families. Many unreached people groups of Algeria. Algeria is 97.29 % religious and social pressures usually force Chrisitan girls to hide their faith and marry Muslims. Pray for the Muslim according to sources via Operation World. few Christian couples, for the strength and endurance, and that they may minister to the Church. Changing in the law in 2006 has caused freedom of religion to start to dwindle down to nothing. Chrisitans only make up .28 % of the population.

Praise God for the continued growth of the Berber people group in their commitment to Christ. Pray that it may continue to spread and to depen.

Islam is the predominant faith in Algeria. Since 1992, fundamentalists led by the Islamic Armed Group (GIA) have waged a bloody war of terror, with the state, the My prayer for January is that you will be burdened for the people of Algeria and that you will be compelled media, and foreigners as targets. to seek the Lord in prayer over the salvation of these unreached people groups They are quickly gaining control of schools and mosques, and intimidating or even murdering anyone who opposes them. Let’s pray for powerful conversions to Jesus among Islamic leaders in Algeria. I am reminded of the story of Saul’s conversion in the book of Acts. How he too was a persecutor of Christians. The Lord used him in mighty ways for the spread of the Gospel. He can certainly do it again with the Islamic leaders in Algeria.

Scripture Focus Who would not fear you, O King of the nations? For this is your due; for among all the wise ones of the nations and in all their kingdoms there is none like you. (Jeremiah 10:7)

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Joshua Project

Enduring Stories

Joshua Project is a research initiative seeking to

highlight the ethnic people groups of the world with the fewest followers of Christ.

Stories from the

Pray for the followers of Christ

Pray for the followers of Jesus who will soon be apparent among the Filala Berbers, that they will clearly understand and rest upon the Gospel of grace, Persecuted Church not mixing it with the requirement to do good works. Pray they will understand the need to live obediently to Christ, as a result of His forgiveness and presence within.

Pray for the entire people group Pray for the Berbers to provide adequately for their families. Pray that the indigent, the widow and orphan, may be cared for.

Scripture Focus

Berber, Filala of Morocco

“All nations you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord, they will bring glory to your name.” (Psalm 86:9)

Greek, Roman and Phoenician texts make reference to the forerunners of the Berber peoples, located in the eastern portion of Egypt. “Berber” is a generic name given to numerous heterogeneous ethnic groups who share similar cultural, political and economic practices. Contrary to the romantic, popular image that portrays Berbers as nomadic people who cross the desert on camels, their main activity is sedentary agriculture. Today, significant Berber income comes from the large number of immigrants in Europe, especially in France.

Ministry Obstacles Morocco is not an easy place for Christians to enter, and to work.

Outreach Ideas Perhaps Berbers working in Europe will encounter Spirit-filled Christians, those who seriously follow Christ, and who will be able to assist Berbers as they also seek Christ.

Visit the Joshua Project website for more information on unreached people groups. Be sure to visit their Prayer Resource page to find out how you can help make a difference in prayer. 29


Compass Direct

Enduring Stories

Compass Direct News is a news service dedicated

On Nov. 10, Muslim Fulani herdsmen assaulted another Christian village, Apiokashi, in the Jema’a to providing exclusive news, penetrating reports, moving interviews and insightful analyses of situations Local Government Area, killing village leader Bulus and events facing Christians persecuted for their faith Adamu, 40, and his wife, Ladi Bulus. One of their eight children, Asabe Bulus, said that the family was asleep when the Muslim Fulani herdsmen arrived. “As Christians, we have been living peacefully with these Muslims, but we do not understand why they should now attack us,” she said. Click here to read more about this story.

Shouwang Church to End Outdoor Services; Gao Zhisheng Alive

Five Christians Slain in Another Assault in Kaduna, Nigeria

DUBLIN, December 23 (Compass Direct News) – Key issues in Chinese religious rights are taking a pivotal turn at year’s end as the beleaguered Shouwang house church in Beijing will celebrate its last outdoor service on Christmas Day, and “disappeared” human rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng has ostensibly resurfaced – in an undisclosed prison. Denied access to a building they had purchased as a worship venue, the Shouwang church has been meeting outdoors – and facing weekly arrests – since April 10.

UNGWAN RAMI, Nigeria, December 23 (Compass Direct News) – Local Islamists and Muslim Fulani herdsmen attacked a Christian community in Kaduna state on Monday (Dec. 19), killing five people and wounding six, area sources said, just nine days after a A source in Beijing told Compass that next year church deadly attack on a Christian community in Kukum Gida leaders will renew their fight to retain the venue the government had denied the congregation. “They said in the same local government area. the church would actively pursue realizing the goal of returning to meet indoors after Christmas,” the source The Muslim assailants, brandishing firearms and machetes, attacked Christians in Ungwan Rami village said. “And they still believe the best way to resolve the issue is that the government would permit the church of Kaura Local Government Area at 10 p.m. in a to enter into the space it bought.” manner consistent with other religiously motivated assaults in the state, which saw Christians killed last After 20 months of secret detention, the Beijing First month as well, the sources said. Intermediate People’s Court ordered Christian human rights lawyer Gao to serve what had been a suspended The five Christians killed were Matthew Yusuf, 28; three-year prison sentence – supposedly for violating Joseph John, 30; Innocent Abba, 33; Mathias John, terms of his probation. The order came just as the five35; and Didam Zakka, 19. Those injured were Linda year probation period for Gao expired yesterday (Dec. Emmanuel, 3; Emmanuel Zakka, 28; Gabriel Zakka, 22). In 2006 he had been charged with “subverting 20; Deborah Emmanuel, 19; Dominic Daniel, 25; and the power of the state” for defending Christian house Gideon Anthony, 30. The state has suffered a rash of church members and members of the Falun Gong attacks in recent months. spiritual movement. Click here to read more.

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Compass Direct

Enduring Stories “We are alarmed because the police and military seem to have taken over authority from the religious affairs department in Savannakhet,” a spokesman from HRWLRF told Compass. Religious affairs staff should take action, he added, because village officials have violated Lao law, the Constitution and international human rights standards by threatening eviction on the basis of religious belief. Click here to read more about this story.

Family of Convert in Pakistan Seeks to Track Him Down

Lao Officials: Give Up Your Faith or Face Eviction DUBLIN, December 23 (CDN) — Nearly 50 Christians await their fate today after officials in Natoo village, southern Laos, on Wednesday (Dec. 21) summoned four of their leaders and warned that they would evict the entire church “within 24 hours” if they refused to give up their faith.

LAHORE, Pakistan, December 8 (CDN) — When Malik Pauloos of Bhakkar district, Punjab Province finally decided to trust a close relative with the secret that he had left Islam for Christianity, there was no question in his relative’s mind that Pauloos’ relationship with the family was over.

The family had been custodian of an Islamic shrine, the Pir Syed Karamat Shah in Kot Islam, for three generations. Though Pauloos had moved to Karachi, the capital of Sindh Province, 20 years ago to start a scrap business, he had continued fulfilling his duty to prepare the shrine for annual pilgrimages – but after Officials told the Christians they had forfeited their he withdrew from it over time upon his conversion, right to live in the village because of their faith, the shrine leaders were asking pointed questions about his advocacy group Human Rights Watch for Lao Religious adherence to Islam. Freedom (HRWLRF) reported. “I told him [the relative] to get the shrine people off Established just two years ago, the church in Natoo my back, because I did not want to keep any point of village, Palansai district of Savannakhet Province contact with my past life,” Pauloos, 36, told Compass. meets every week in the home of church leader “Although shocked, my relative said that he would first Sompu. The forty-seven members include men, try and make my family understand the situation, and women and children belonging to four extended then they could figure out a way of letting me walk families. away peacefully.” Immediately after the discussion with Natoo officials, Sompu reported the incident to sub-district police, but at press time district officials had not intervened, according to HRWLRF.

Pauloos did not realize that, beyond disowning him, his family would file a police complaint against him because – as a murtad or apostate deserving death – he was said to have committed “blasphemy.” With authorities’ help, family members are trying to track him down, he said. Click here to read more. 31


Wake Up Call from Sudan

Enduring Stories

“Wake up and strengthen what remains …” (Revelations 3:2 KJV) Kevin McMahan is a volunteer Bridgebuilder with Open Doors USA, increasing awareness of the Persecuted Church through presentations, blogs, and social media. He and his wife Sandi live in Little Rock, Arkansas, and travel widely to talk about the Persecuted Church. Kevin can be reached by email at kevin.mcmahan@fedpg.com.

The joy and triumph of this summer’s election, that led to splitting Sudan into two nations – in the north, the Government of Sudan (GOS) and in the south, the Republic of South Sudan (RSS) – has turned to tears and fears of a return to war in this, the largest country in Africa. In November, 2011, after traveling to the country, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) accused GOS of violating human rights law, including freedom of religion or belief. ( “Policy Focus – Sudan”, United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, Fall 2011, www.uscirf.gov)

USCIRF reports that 230,000 people have been displaced from their homes in the Nuba Mountains, and some 50,000 of them have sought refuge across the border in RSS. A large refugee camp of 30,000 people, growing at more than 300 per day, has been formed at Yida, about 10 miles deep into RSS. More recently, the GOS resorted to bombing the refugee camp. “I am an imam. A soldier came to me as the imam of the mosque with the message that all Muslims should leave the city because they wanted to kill the Christians…” (Imam, outside Kadugli)

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Wake Up Call from Sudan

Enduring Stories

The need for prayer and support has never been greater in this part of the world. The Sudan’s were at war for more than 20 years; if not north and south, it has been north and west (meaning Darfur). And there are fragile, unstable environments immediately to the north (Egypt) and to the northwest (Libya).

Prayer Points: 1. Pray for all the peoples of the Sudan’s; that the families of those killed will be comforted and will renewed strength to seek peace, that those wounded will have restored health and well-being and that their families will remain strong and learn to love their enemies; and that those displaced from their homes will be watched over and protected, whether they choose a new home or are waiting to return to their old home. 2. Pray for the Christians in the Sudan’s; that they will seek out God’s Word for endurance and wisdom; and that they will listen and follow instructions from the Holy Spirit, as they pursue reconciliation. 3. Pray for the non-believers in the Sudan’s; that Jesus will reveal Himself to them as the Messiah, as the Way to salvation; that they will accept Jesus as their Savior; and turn from the deadly and destructive patterns of the past. 4. Pray for peace throughout the region; including Egypt, Libya, and the seven other countries that share a border with the Sudan’s. “God uses persecution for the good of the church. However, persecution is not the work of a loving God – it is the work of our sworn enemy … Satan … he is an enemy of prayer, especially when we are asking God to free people from darkness …” -Brother Andrew, Founder, Open Doors USA

Continued on next page 33


Wake Up Call from Sudan

Enduring Stories

BACKGROUND At its core, the Sudan conflict is about the Arab Muslim power base (GOS, northern Sudan) pursuing a path to rid the country of African Muslims (Darfur, western Sudan), Christians and animists (RSS, southern Sudan), and the former sympathizers with the south (Blue Nile and South Kordofan, in the Nuba Mountains on the north/south border). “Under the control of Sudanese Present Omar al-Bashir, the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and Khartoum’s paramilitary Popular Defense Forces (PDF) have targeted persons based on religion, ethnicity, and political affiliation in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile states.” USCIRF Policy Focus - Sudan

The “Religion in Sudan” map provides a descriptive picture of the dominant Muslim community in the north, with the Christians and animists in the south. Source: http://southsudaninfo.net Dr. M. Isady http://gulf2000.columbia.edu/maps.shtml

“On the Tuesday after the fighting started I was at school with my students. I saw a vehicle with SAF soldiers surround an Episcopal Church of Sudan near the school. There were Christians inside the church praying. SAF soldiers started shooting inside the church at the people. SAF soldiers went into the church and pulled out a Christian, captured him, and shot him.” (Teacher, Kadugli)

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Wake Up Call from Sudan

Enduring Stories

REPUBLIC OF SOUTH SUDAN (RSS) What’s it like? RSS has a population about like the state of Georgia, in an area a little smaller than the state of Texas. It’s a very young, rural, illiterate, and poor country: Below Age 18 Below Age 30 Rural Literate Below Poverty

51% 72% 83% 27% 51%

How you can help? First, pray. Second, consider supporting the organizations working in the Sudan’s. Open Doors International and Samaritan’s Purse are two of them: Open Doors International: (www.opendoors.org, www.odusa.org) OD is providing church leadership training, management seminars and training pastors’ wives; conducting Sunday school training and children’s ministry seminars, and training youth; distributing Bibles and Christian literature; working with livelihood support, community development, and agricultural projects; and distributing medical kits and supporting access to healthcare services. Samaritan’s Purse: (www.samaritanspurse.org) SP has rebuilt 168 churches in the Nuba Mountains. They are supporting the Yida refugee camp, which needs 12 tons of food every day; where hundreds of children are arriving alone, not knowing if their parents are alive. They provide Bibles in the refugee’s tribal language; obtain therapeutic food for severely malnourished children; provide weatherproof plastic for shelter, with a cooking kit, water jug, blankets, and mosquito nets; and drilling and equipping wells to provide safe, clean water. [God] comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. (2 Corinthians 1:4 NLT) “Comfort, comfort my people,” says your God. (Isaiah 40:1 NLT)

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Revive I read of the revivals of the past, great sweeping revivals where thousands of men were swept into the Kingdom of God. I read about Charles G. Finney winning his thousands and his hundreds of thousands of souls to Christ. Then I picked up a book and read the messages of Charles G. Finney and the message of Jonathan Edwards on ‘Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,’ and I said, ‘No wonder men trembled; no wonder they fell in the altars and cried out in repentance and sobbed their way to the throne of grace!’ - Leonard Ravenhill


Effective Prayer

Revive

Persevere in Prayer

Trust the Lord

Pray in Faith

And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. (Luke 18:1)

Commit your way to the LORD; trust And Jesus answered them, “Have in him, and he will act. faith in God. Truly, I say to you, (Psalms 37:5) whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, Pray Specifically but believes that what he says will Pray With Confidence do not be anxious about anything, come to pass, it will be done for him. Therefore I tell you, whatever Let us then with confidence draw but in everything by prayer and you ask in prayer, believe that you near to the throne of grace, that we supplication with thanksgiving let have received it, and it will be may receive mercy and find grace to your requests be made known to yours. help in time of need. God. (Mark 11:22-24) (Hebrews 4:16) (Philippians 4:6)

Resist the Devil

Pray in the name of Jesus

Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. (James 4:7)

Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it. (John 14:13-14)

Pray According to God’s Promises For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory. (2 Corinthians 1:20)

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Effective Prayer

Revive

“Beware in your prayers above everything else, of limiting God, not only by unbelief, but by fancying that you know what He can do.

failure and disappointment, let the whole Church answer God’s standing challenged: “Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knows not.” - James Hudson Taylor

Expect unexpected things, ‘above all that we ask or think’. Each time, before you intercede, be quiet first, and worship God in His glory. “The goal of prayer is the ear of God, a goal that can only be Think of what He can do, and how reached by patient and continued He delights to hear the prayers of and continuous waiting upon Him, His redeemed people. pouring out our heart to Him and permitting Him to speak to us. Only Think of your place and privilege in by so doing can we expect to know Christ, and expect great things!”Him, and as we come to know Him Andrew Murray better we shall spend more time in His presence and find that presence “The power of prayer has never a constant and ever-increasing been tried to its full capacity in any delight. - E. M. Bounds church. If we want to see mighty wonders of divine grace and power wrought in the place of weakness,

“Don’t pray when you feel like it. Have an appointment with the Lord and keep it. A man is powerful on his knees.” - Corrie ten Boom “Prayer will make a man cease from sin, or sin will entice a man to cease from prayer.” - John Bunyon “Prayer is not overcoming God’s reluctance, but laying hold of His willingness.” - Martin Luther. “We have to pray with our eyes on God, not on the difficulties.” -Oswald Chambers “It is not enough to begin to pray, nor to pray aright; nor is it enough to continue for a time to pray; but we must patiently, believingly, continue in prayer until we obtain an answer;” - George Müller

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Effective Prayer

Revive

It was very dear to Jesus’ heart and also a command from Him that the church should be a house of prayer(Matt.21:13).

important focus of spiritual leaders in the congregation remains helping individuals to pray with greater boldness and more faith. Individuals need guidance on how to enter into a deeper and more intimate and personal relationship with God.

He quotes Isaiah 56:7 and so confirms that God’s plan with His “church” (Old Testament) is also His plan with the church in the New Continuous, uncomplicated and Testament. practical instruction in prayer is necessary. Numerous sermons and It is still one of the greatest books on prayer give wonderful challenges for churches to be spiritual content, but are mostly houses of prayer. The following lacking in practical guidelines on are a number of guidelines that how to plan your daily quiet time. churches can use to give more momentum to prayer in the Teach Believers how to use a prayer congregation. We’ll be covering journal. Give them a simple layout these over the next 2 months. of what to pray for, how to listen to God and how to pray the Word. A praying congregation starts with individuals who pray. The most

Establishing prayer groups in the congregation is of the utmost importance. Boost existing prayer groups and encourage the establishment of new prayer groups. It helps to get together businessmen, for example, in one or more prayer group, and also to encourage young people, children, women and specific interest groups to start their own groups. The different ministries of the congregation must be encouraged to establish a prayermovement or prayer group for their ministry, on the understanding that they also pray in those groups themselves and not expect others to do the ‘prayer work’ while they just do the other work.

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Compass Direct “We are alarmed because the police and military seem to have taken over authority from the religious affairs department in Savannakhet,” a spokesman from HRWLRF told Compass. Religious affairs staff should take action, he added, because village officials have violated Lao law, the Constitution and international human rights standards by threatening eviction on the basis of religious belief. Click here to read more about this story.

Family of Convert in Pakistan Seeks to Track Him Down

Lao Officials: Give Up Your Faith or Face Eviction DUBLIN, December 23 (CDN) — Nearly 50 Christians await their fate today after officials in Natoo village, southern Laos, on Wednesday (Dec. 21) summoned four of their leaders and warned that they would evict the entire church “within 24 hours” if they refused to give up their faith.

LAHORE, Pakistan, December 8 (CDN) — When Malik Pauloos of Bhakkar district, Punjab Province finally decided to trust a close relative with the secret that he had left Islam for Christianity, there was no question in his relative’s mind that Pauloos’ relationship with the family was over.

The family had been custodian of an Islamic shrine, the Pir Syed Karamat Shah in Kot Islam, for three generations. Though Pauloos had moved to Karachi, the capital of Sindh Province, 20 years ago to start a scrap business, he had continued fulfilling his duty to prepare the shrine for annual pilgrimages – but after Officials told the Christians they had forfeited their he withdrew from it over time upon his conversion, right to live in the village because of their faith, the shrine leaders were asking pointed questions about his advocacy group Human Rights Watch for Lao Religious adherence to Islam. Freedom (HRWLRF) reported. “I told him [the relative] to get the shrine people off Established just two years ago, the church in Natoo my back, because I did not want to keep any point of village, Palansai district of Savannakhet Province contact with my past life,” Pauloos, 36, told Compass. meets every week in the home of church leader “Although shocked, my relative said that he would first Sompu. The forty-seven members include men, try and make my family understand the situation, and women and children belonging to four extended then they could figure out a way of letting me walk families. away peacefully.” Immediately after the discussion with Natoo officials, Sompu reported the incident to sub-district police, but at press time district officials had not intervened, according to HRWLRF.

Pauloos did not realize that, beyond disowning him, his family would file a police complaint against him because – as a murtad or apostate deserving death – he was said to have committed “blasphemy.” With authorities’ help, family members are trying to track him down, he said. Click here to read more. 40


Foxes Book of Martyrs With millions of copies in print, Foxe’s Book of Martyrs has become a classic of magnificent courage and faith. Beginning with Jesus Christ, this unparalleled volume traces the roots of religious persecution. Some of the heroic figures examined are John Hus, John Wycliffe, William Tyndale, Anne Askew, Lady Jane Grey, and Martin Luther. Every month we will take a look back into the history of the Persecuted Church.

history, to the end, first, that the wonderful works of God in His Church might appear to His glory; also that, the continuance and proceedings of the Church, from time to time, being set forth, more knowledge and experience may redound thereby, to the profit of the reader and edification of Christian faith.

As it is not our business to enlarge upon our Savior’s history, either before or after His crucifixion, we CHAPTER I shall only find it necessary to remind our readers of the discomfiture of the Jews by His subsequent History of Christian Martyrs to the First General resurrection. Although one apostle had betrayed Persecutions Him; although another had denied Him, under the solemn sanction of an oath; and although the rest had Under Nero forsaken Him, unless we may except “the disciple who was known unto the high-priest”; the history of His Christ our Savior, in the Gospel of St. Matthew, hearing resurrection gave a new direction to all their hearts, the confession of Simon Peter, who, first of all other, and, after the mission of the Holy Spirit, imparted new openly acknowledged Him to be the Son of God, confidence to their minds. The powers with which and perceiving the secret hand of His Father therein, they were endued emboldened them to proclaim His called him (alluding to his name) a rock, upon which name, to the confusion of the Jewish rulers, and the rock He would build His Church so strong that the astonishment of Gentile proselytes. gates of hell should not prevail against it. In which words three things are to be noted: First, that Christ I. St. Stephen will have a Church in this world. Secondly, that the same Church should mightily be impugned, not only St. Stephen suffered the next in order. His death by the world, but also by the uttermost strength and was occasioned by the faithful manner in which he powers of all hell. And, thirdly, that the same Church, preached the Gospel to the betrayers and murderers notwithstanding the uttermost of the devil and all his of Christ. To such a degree of madness were they malice, should continue. excited, that they cast him out of the city and stoned him to death. The time when he suffered is generally Which prophecy of Christ we see wonderfully to supposed to have been at the passover which be verified, insomuch that the whole course of the succeeded to that of our Lord’s crucifixion, and to the Church to this day may seem nothing else but a era of his ascension, in the following spring. verifying of the said prophecy. First, that Christ hath set up a Church, needeth no declaration. Secondly, Upon this a great persecution was raised against all what force of princes, kings, monarchs, governors, who professed their belief in Christ as the Messiah, and rulers of this world, with their subjects, publicly or as a prophet. We are immediately told by St. Luke, and privately, with all their strength and cunning, have that “there was a great persecution against the church bent themselves against this Church! which was at Jerusalem;” and that “they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea And, thirdly, how the said Church, all this and Samaria, except the apostles.” notwithstanding, hath yet endured and holden its own! What storms and tempests it hath overpast, About two thousand Christians, with Nicanor, one of wondrous it is to behold: for the more evident the seven deacons, suffered martyrdom during the declaration whereof, I have addressed this present “persecution that arose about Stephen.” 41


Foxes Book of Martyrs

Puritan Vision

With millions of copies in print, Foxe’s Book of Martyrs has become a classic of magnificent courage and faith. Beginning with Jesus Christ, this unparalleled volume traces the roots of religious persecution. Some of the heroic figures examined are John Hus, John Wycliffe, William Tyndale, Anne Askew, Lady Jane Grey, and Martin Luther. Every month we will take a look back into the history of the Persecuted Church.

God in His Church might appear to His glory; also that, the continuance and proceedings of the Church, from time to time, being set forth, more knowledge and experience may redound thereby, to the profit of the reader and edification of Christian faith.

As it is not our business to enlarge upon our Savior’s history, either before or after His crucifixion, we shall only find it necessary to remind our readers CHAPTER I of the discomfiture of the Jews by His subsequent resurrection. Although one apostle had betrayed History of Christian Martyrs to the First General Him; although another had denied Him, under the Persecutions solemn sanction of an oath; and although the rest had forsaken Him, unless we may except “the disciple who Under Nero was known unto the high-priest”; the history of His resurrection gave a new direction to all their hearts, Christ our Savior, in the Gospel of St. Matthew, hearing and, after the mission of the Holy Spirit, imparted new the confession of Simon Peter, who, first of all other, confidence to their minds. The powers with which openly acknowledged Him to be the Son of God, they were endued emboldened them to proclaim His and perceiving the secret hand of His Father therein, name, to the confusion of the Jewish rulers, and the called him (alluding to his name) a rock, upon which astonishment of Gentile proselytes. rock He would build His Church so strong that the gates of hell should not prevail against it. In which I. St. Stephen words three things are to be noted: First, that Christ will have a Church in this world. Secondly, that the St. Stephen suffered the next in order. His death same Church should mightily be impugned, not only was occasioned by the faithful manner in which he by the world, but also by the uttermost strength and preached the Gospel to the betrayers and murderers powers of all hell. And, thirdly, that the same Church, of Christ. To such a degree of madness were they notwithstanding the uttermost of the devil and all his excited, that they cast him out of the city and stoned malice, should continue. him to death. The time when he suffered is generally supposed to have been at the passover which Which prophecy of Christ we see wonderfully to succeeded to that of our Lord’s crucifixion, and to the be verified, insomuch that the whole course of the era of his ascension, in the following spring. Church to this day may seem nothing else but a verifying of the said prophecy. First, that Christ hath Upon this a great persecution was raised against all set up a Church, needeth no declaration. Secondly, who professed their belief in Christ as the Messiah, what force of princes, kings, monarchs, governors, or as a prophet. We are immediately told by St. Luke, and rulers of this world, with their subjects, publicly that “there was a great persecution against the church and privately, with all their strength and cunning, have which was at Jerusalem;” and that “they were all bent themselves against this Church! scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.” And, thirdly, how the said Church, all this notwithstanding, hath yet endured and holden its About two thousand Christians, with Nicanor, one of own! What storms and tempests it hath overpast, the seven deacons, suffered martyrdom during the wondrous it is to behold: for the more evident “persecution that arose about Stephen.” declaration whereof, I have addressed this present history, to the end, first, that the wonderful works of 42


Puritan Vision How to Know If You Are A Real Christian - By Jonathan Edwards Part One: Demons Have a Knowledge of God “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that-and shudder.” James 2:19 How do you know if you belong to God? We see in these words what some people depend on as an evidence of their acceptance with God. Some people think that they are all right before God if they are not as bad as some evil person. Other people point to their family history or church membership to show that God approves of them. There is an evangelism programme in common use that asks people certain questions. One of the questions is, “Suppose you were to die today. Why should God let you into his heaven?” A very common response is, “I believe in God.” Apparently the apostle James knew people who said the same thing: I know I am in God’s favor, because I know these religious doctrines. Of course James admits that this knowledge is good. Not only is it good, but it is also necessary. Nobody can be a Christian who doesn’t believe in God; and more than that, the One True God. This is particularly true for those who had the great advantage of actually knowing the apostle, someone who could tell them of his first-hand experience with Jesus, the Son of God. Imagine the great sin of a person, who knew James, and then refused to believe in God! Certainly this would make their damnation greater. Of course, all Christians know that this belief in the One God is only the start of good things because “anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” (Heb. 11:6.)

of that! They not only believe that He exists, but they believe that God is a holy God, a sin-hating God, a God of truth, who has promised judgments, and who will carry out his vengeance upon them. This is the reason the demons “shudder” or tremble- they know God more clearly than most human beings do, and they are afraid. Nevertheless, nothing in the mind of man, that devils may experience as well, is any sure sign of God’s grace in our hearts. This reasoning may be easily turned around. Suppose demons could have, or find within themselves, something of God’s saving grace-proof they would go to heaven. This would prove James wrong. But how absurd! The Bible makes it clear that demons have no hope of salvation, and their believing in God does not take away their future punishment. Therefore believing in God is not proof of salvation for demons, and it is safe to say, not for people, either. The following excerpt is available for download at puritansermons.com

The Gospel Way (A Puritan Prayer) Blessed LORD JESUS, No human mind could conceive or invent the Gospel. Acting in eternal grace, thou art both its messenger and its message, lived out on earth through infinite compassion, applying thy life to insult, injury, death, that I might be redeemed, ransomed, freed. Blessed be thou, O Father for contriving this way, Eternal thanks to theee, O Lamb of God, for opening this way; Praise everlasting to thee, O Holy Spirit, for applying this way to my heart.

Glorious Trinity, impress the gospel on my soul, until its virtue diffuses every faculty; Let it be heard, However, James is clear that although this belief a acknowledged, professed, felt. Teach me to secure good thing, it is definitely not proof that a person this might blessing; Help me to give up every darling is saved. What he means is this: “You say you are a Christian and you are in God’s favor. You think God will lust, to submit heart and life to its commands, to have let you into heaven, and the proof of it is, you believe it in my will, controlling my affections, molding my understanding. in God. But that is no evidence at all, because the demons also believe, and they are sure to be punished Amen. in hell.” The demons believe in God, you can be sure 43


Revive - January 2012