Watch Pray Revive
Volume 1 Issue 5 Volume 1 Issue 4
In This Issue
Searching for More
Food For the Poor
“Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice; and let them say among the nations, ‘The Lord reigns.’” (1 Chronicles 16:31) Persevere in prayer (Luke 18:1)
9 Volume 1 Issue 4
Watch Pray Revive is a publication of Be the Domino Ministries Watch Pray Revive is a magazine focused on and devoted to prayer. The core ministries included in each issue of Watch Pray Revive include CURE International, Open Doors, Joshua Project, Operation World, and Food For the Poor. Without these ministries, this ministry would not exist.
Unless otherwise indicated all Scripture quotations are taken from the ESV© Bible translation. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Watch Pray Revive
Searching For More
it’s God. God is everywhere. He surrounds us. There isn’t anywhere we could go that God isn’t already there. “ is always seeking you. Every sunset. Every clear blue sky. Every ocean wave. The starry host of night. David knew this. Reading through Psalm 139 David not He blankets each new day with the invitation I AM HERE.” only wrote that he could not escape God, that God was everywhere, but that he acknowledged that God even -Lou Giglio was the One who formed his inner most parts, knitted him together. Each and every Sunday morning millions of people walk out of churches all across the world, their lives no different than before they walked through the doors. No lives were In Psalm 139 David had this to say: changed, whatever was left at the altar was taken out You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern of the front doors as they left. Next week, they’ll “try it my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my again.” lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O LORD, you know Sometimes I wonder how we’ve missed it. How I missed it. How I’ve missed Him... Evidence of God surrounds us, it altogether. You hem me in, behind and before, and lay everywhere, yet we somehow manage to miss him entirely your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it. Where shall I go from your some days, our focus simply being on everything else, Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend but Him. Some of us can chalk it up to “routine”. We do what we do, almost the same way every day, without even to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the giving much thought to it. Rarely do we spend any time uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead with Him before we get up and moving for the day. me, and your right hand shall hold me. If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” My routine usually starts with checking my email, and even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as whatever social media network that seems to be holding my attention. “Oh, hello God, “ I think as I see my morning the day, for darkness is as light with you. For you formed devotional sitting in my inbox waiting for me to read. “I’ll my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. get right to that, as soon as I.........” and it trails off. My time with Him is already off-track, and the chances of me finishing that sentence are often zero percent. Something David knew that no matter where he went, God was there. He knew that he couldn’t run from God, just the same we else has caught my incredibly short attention span. My know that we cannot run from Him. Our issue today isn’t day has started, things are in motion and before long I’m that we can’t escape Him, it’s that we know He is there, yet headed out to start my day. we choose to ignore Him. Throughout my day I do carry on in conversation with God, We just live our days pretending He’s not really there. I’ve but it’s usually pretty one-sided. Some days I wonder if I really thought a lot about this. We offer up a lot of empty ever let Him finish a sentence. prayers and promises to Him, because we pretend He isn’t really there. I actually think it goes deeper than this. We fill our days with a lot of things, I often wonder how many of those things have any eternal significance We don’t spend time with God because we are afraid of whatsoever. Our schedules are so over-packed, overwhat He might say. We pray, but when we’re done praying, worked, and over-done, we rarely have time for the that’s the end of the conversation for us. We’ll “check things that really matter. How did we get deceived into thinking that this was acceptable? Why do I allow so many in with Him next time”. I think the thought of sitting in absolute silence is scary because it causes us to listen. unimportant things take the place of those things that What if God was to speak to us during that time? What if really matter? He was telling us what He wanted us to do? Would that scare you? I’ve heard many people say that would make it Somehow, we know that God is there. The creation surrounding us tells us there’s more to this life than living a lot easier, but seriously I think those people are fooling and dying. Yet it’s almost as if we choose to ignore it. We themselves. Why? Because then you’d be accountable to keep searching for “more”. Ever heard someone say “I just do what He told you to do. know there’s more out there.” I know I’ve said it. -continued on page 27 Yes, there is ‘more’ out there, more has a name, and
Watch Pray Revive
We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. For Christ did not please himself, but as it is written, â€œThe reproaches of those who reproached you fell on me.â€? For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God. (Romans 15:1-7)
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“Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter” Francis Chan
God’s Workroom Written by Kevin McMahan
uses all our experiences, our trials and tribulations, the good times and the bad times, the persecution and Satan’s temptations, as His workroom to show Himself to us, to break us down, to save us and build us up in His ways, and to conform us in the image of His Precious Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. That’s what’s going on as we go through life, one day at a time. I borrowed the “workroom” idea from Paul David Tripp, who wrote “A Shelter in Time of Storm.” He defined our world as a “workroom of redemption” for God. He was talking about the age-old question that people have been asking for a very long time … Why wouldn’t all Christians live in a bed of roses and have nothing but good times and physical comforts? The complete answer is … WE DON’T KNOW. It’s a Godthing, and it’s for Him to know. But don’t you know He
We know our God causes all things to work for our good (Romans 8:28 ESV) “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”
Therefore … We have to believe that whatever is happening, for good and for bad, is positioning us to be where we’re supposed to be and doing what God plans for us! Does that make sense? The Bible talks a lot about family. God could have brought a Savior into the world anyway He wanted, and He used the family structure to do so! I think about my wife and I raising our children and my Mom and Dad raising me. The commonality between the two was the purpose of the parent – to love, to encourage, to discipline, to support, to build up, and to guide the child on a better path. The same is true of our LORD and He tells us His purpose – to make
“Why would a Sovereign God allow bad things to happen to His people?” gets that question a lot when believers get to Heaven!
us like Christ.
Part of the answer though has to do with what it takes to make us more Christ-like and to prepare us for works of service that build the Kingdom. His Kingdom. He didn’t offer His only Son an easy, comfortable path on this earth, why would we expect anything better? We know God made us to have and to exercise our own free will. He wants our love and our works of service to be offered out of love and He knows how best to get that result. That’s what we have to bank on … in good times as well as bad.
Scripture is full of examples of the activities in God’s Workroom. Ronald Boyd-MacMillan, a notable author on the subject of the persecuted church, reminds us that “… for every story of deliverance you hear about our persecuted brothers and sisters, there are a hundred endurance stories. The story of the persecuted church is largely one of endurance.” If we’re following Jesus, I think we’ll find that’s true of us in the free church too.
We know our God is Sovereign(Psalms 93:1a, 5) “The LORD reigns, he is robed in majesty… Your statutes stand firm, holiness adorns your house for endless days, O LORD.” We know our God saves us (Psalm 55:16 NIV) “But I call to God, and the LORD saves me.” We know our God has seen our entire life as a snapshot (Psalm 139:16 NLT) “You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.”
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“God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.” (James 1:12 NLT) Kevin McMahan is a businessman who works in the area of low income multifamily housing across the nation. He is a volunteer Bridgebuilder for Open Doors USA, increasing awareness of the Persecuted Church. Kevin and his wife, Sandi, live in Little Rock, Arkansas, where they are active members in Journey Church.
Contact Kevin at email@example.com. www.bethedomino.org
for Caleb Chirchir
When I first met Caleb, he beat his legs and shouted, “Tafadhali nitengeneze miguu. Nitembee kama Cheru,” Kiswahili for, “Please fix my legs. I want to walk like Cheru.” Cheru is Caleb’s elder sister. She, unlike her brother, was born normal while Caleb was born with a clubfoot. After delivering him, Caleb’s mother thought that it was punishment from God for having laughed at a pregnant woman in the past (a superstition held by a few people as a possible reason for disability). But thanks to her husband who did not hold the same view, they opted to seek medical attention. This is a quest that led them to the Association for the Physically Disabled in Kenya (APDK), who then referred them to our CURE mobile clinic in a town called Eldoret. At the clinic, Caleb told me that he doesn’t like wearing shoes, because he thinks that they make his clubfoot very visible. As a result, he now has different pairs of rain boots that he wears with everything. Chirchir, Caleb’s second name, means “in a hurry” or “quickly” in his local language. His mother says that this is definitely true of him in school, and he’s quite a fast learner and very proud of his academic progress. With his mother working as a secondhand clothes dealer and his father being jobless, there’s not a lot of money to go around. Regardless, they’ll do anything to get the condition corrected and give their son the childhood and life he deserves.
Niger Praise God that over 250 surgeries have been performed in the first 9 month of operation in the CURE Niger hospital. These successful surgeries have provided a living demonstration of the Lord’s grace in this Muslim country. Praise also for the story of a father whose child, Abdoul, had been treated for cleft palate. “He traveled 550 kilometers to see the miracle. When he saw the result, he started praising the God of Christians for allowing his child to be accepted by other children. He declared that now nothing can stop Abdoul from going back to school. The father was so happy that he started going from one office to another thanking the CURE personnel.” Pray for our CURE expatriate families who are enduring very difficult living conditions. The extreme heat, lack of consistent electricity and overwhelming poverty of the Nigerian people present daily challenges. Pray that they can continue to persevere under these circumstances, it is the desire of their hearts to serve the children and families of Niger and share the love of Jesus with each one of them.
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joshuaproject.net There are few, less than 2 % of the population that are Christ followers
for the Unreached
Temne-Banta of Sierra Leone. Centuries ago the Banta Themne left Guinea and established themselves in the northern province of Sierra Leone, bringing with them their traditional African beliefs as well as their Islamic faith. They live in the rural bush area of this West African nation. There are 159 villages. Several chiefs govern various Banta Themne groups, but there is only one paramount chief, and he rules them all. This tribe lives in an area difficult for outsiders to access. Christians need to pray persistently for the Temne-Banta tribe, and pray for workers to take the good news of Jesus to them. There may be no followers of Christ among the Temne-Banta tribe at present, but pray for those that will soon be evident. Pray they will clearly understand the Gospel of grace, resting firmly on Christ and His finished work on the cross. Pray the Temne-Banta tribe will be able to prepare for the rapidly changing conditions of the 21st century, making schooling for their children high priority. Pray they will be able to care adequately for their families.
Pray they in all things will grow up into Him who is the Head, Christ.
There are few, less than 2 % of the population that are Christ followers Kinnaura of India The traditional occupations of the Kanaura are agriculture, trade and sheep-rearing, which they continue to pursue even today. Kanaura religion is a mixture of Buddhism and Hinduism. According to the 1981 census, their literacy rate was 34.8%. The women of this community perform all the agricultural and household work, contribute to the family income and control family expenditures. The Kanaura community has a fairly low literacy rate, suggesting written Gospel materials will have limited usefulness. They need to be supplemented with oral communication. Christians can carry the Gospel of Christ to the Kanaura community through use of Gospel films and recordings, and also by telling stories from Scripture. Some followers of Jesus among the Kanaura community have been identified. Pray they will learn to live in the power of Christâ€™s Spirit, also being quick to repent of sin. Pray they will learn to speak to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. Pray the Kanaura community will be able to care adequately for their families.
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Pray that they will be prepared to understand and receive the Good News of Jesus when it comes to them.
World Watch List 2011 #3 Afghanistan The situation in Afghanistan has deteriorated during the last reporting period.The government intensified persecution of Muslim background believers. Afghanistan has a population of more than 28 million people. Among them are very few Christians. Afghan believers are not accepted by the predominantly Muslim society, and legislation is not clear about the religious rights of Christians. During 2010, there were many examples of intimidation and threats against Christians. In May and June 2010, the Afghan television network Noorin repeatedly showed footage of Muslim background believers who were being baptized. Christian aid organizations were also accused of evangelism. In response to the broadcast, the secretary of the Lower House during a session of parliament called for the execution of these Christian converts from Islam. The broadcast and response of the government caused protests on the streets of Kabul and in other Afghan cities. Hundreds of protesters shouted death threats against Christian converts and demanded the expulsion of Christian organizations because of their assumed Christian influence. Pressure on Afghan Christians intensified and dozens searched for safety in other neighborhoods orcities or fled the country. Several arrests and court cases of Christians have taken place in 2010. In August, Christian aid workers were killed by the Taliban.
Afghan Christians continue to suffer persecution and even violence from their families and others. In a unique situation in the history of the country, there is now a public debate over allowing Afghans to be Christians and have rights.
Watch Pray Revive
Prayer Requests Afghanistan - 10 workers in Afghanistan were killed on their way back from giving medical care in a remote region of the country. Please remember their relatives and friends in their grief. Ethiopia - Church leaders and Christians are increasingly becoming soft targets for persecution. Please pray for their spiritual and physical well-being. Ask the Holy Spirit to remind all the evangelists to continue to trust the Lord with their lives. Sri Lanka - Post-civil war rehabiliation efforts continue to this day, particularly in the northeast distrcts of Sri Lanka. The body of Christ can play a role in fostering reconcilation and supporting the govt. in restoring infrastructures. Pray for Church leaders, pastors and families of believers to do their part.
For a monthly guide of prayer requests visit the Open Doors website. The World Watch List is compiled from a speciallydesigned questionnaire of 50 questions covering various aspects of religious freedom. A point value is assigned depending on how each question is answered. The total number of points per country determines its position on the World Watch List of countries that are the worst persecutors of Christians.
for the Netherlands
Most people have little meaningful contact with the good news. No longer a highly Christianized nation, few today really understand teh gospel and only a small minority have a meaningful relationship with authentic Christianity. Only 1-3 % of Amsterdam attends church. The vasty majority of natives and many immigrants are unchurched. Nearly half of Amsterdam’s population are immigrants. Other large cities in the Netherlands face similar challenges and opportunities. By 2050 it is predicted that one third of the whole country will be immigrants. Many form an urban underclass filled with unemployment, involvement with drugs and crime. They also make up the least evangelized people of the whole country. the beautiful city of Amsterdam
In the Netherlands there is freedom of religion, but there is also freedom for almost any kind of lifestyle. Christian’s make up 46.55 % of the population. Non-religious make up 46.86 % of the population.
Less than 20 % attend church with any regularity. Half of the nations church buildings have been destroyed or converted for other purposes, such as bars and mosques. The Church has effectively withdrawn from engaging society in the public sphere. Pray for: A spiritual renewal to replace empty traditions, structural rigidity, and increasingly irrelevant theological disputes in some Christian traditions.
The Netherlands has two major claims to fame: 1) A glorious history as a Christian nation. It’s fight for religious freedo, ministry to refugees and Jews, and a record of extensive involvement in missions to other lands. 2) A decadent present as a secular society that has turned its back on its past. The number of Christians in this generation is dramatically declining, and today’s openly permissive society ronounces its heritage. There are few restrictions on drugs, deviant lifestyles, prostitution, homosexuality, and abortion. The Netherlands is the first country to legalize euthanasia and is a world leader in promoting post-Christian, secular, and New Age worldviews and values.
A recommitment to Scripture and biblical holiness, instead of free-thinking liberalism and tolerant pluralism. A prophetic message to society that contains authority and appeals to young people and addresses the tide of secularism, materialism, rampant immorality, false spiritualities, and hopeless nihilism. There is a steady trickle of Muslims believing in Christ. Pray that the trickle becomes a stream and then a torrent. Pray for these believers to be integrated into groups of likeminded disciples with whom they can walk the walk of faith in Jesus.
Pray for a revival that restores the nation spiritually.
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Food For The Poor
For The Poor to buy rice from Haitian
In a move to help Haitian farmers as well as to supply food even more efficiently to the hungry in that country, the international relief and development agency Food For The Poor will start buying rice from 2,000 farmers in the area most affected by the 2010 earthquake. The partnership will begin today and will provide a third of the rice that the charity needs for its feeding programs in Haiti. "This initiative is going to help the rice growers increase their production and grow a better strain of rice through help we are providing," said Robin Mahfood, President/ CEO of Food For The Poor. "We are happy we're able to work with the farmers in this way, and we believe it will help us better meet the needs of the poor we serve."
The program will begin with Food For The Poor buying about 200 tons of rice each month, but Mahfood said he hopes that will continue to grow as the farmers have more success with their crops. “We will buy everything they produce,” he said.
Slavery in Haiti Persists
In Haiti, slavery has been abolished since 1804. A closer look however reveals the ugly truth that child slavery is still very much a reality. As American children spend their time going to school, playing sports and hanging out with friends; thousands of school-age children in Haiti continue to be locked in lives of illiteracy, deprivation, forced labor and abuse. An estimated 300,000 Haitian children live a life consisting of little more than hard work from dusk till dawn. They are child slaves, or How can this happen in today’s world? “restaveks.” Islande (R), is determined to protect her daughter from the same fate she suffered as a restavek. Tragedy, exploitation and poverty permeate Haiti’s landscape and history, but the prevalence of the restavek system remains one of the country’s most troubling issues. For generations, the widespread practice by poor families has been to send their children to live with comparatively wealthy families in hopes that they will be cared for and educated. Unfortunately, more often than not, the arrangement ends up with the child being treated as a slave rather than being given proper care or opportunity. Desperate parents continue sending their children away with the hope that they will be properly fed and educated, but the majority are condemned to starvation rations, regular beatings and no hope for an education. In a previous newsletter, we shared the story of Islande Altianas, a 30-year-old former restavek who spent her childhood as a domestic servant. She dreamed of going to school like other children her age and being a part of a loving family, but the threat of beatings from her “caretaker” quickly brought her back to reality. Today she has children of her own and while she is determined to find a way to care for them, sending any one of them away to become a restavek is not an option.
Watch Pray Revive
Revive! 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)
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Humble But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” (James 4:6) Change is a scary thing to pray for, but what about humility? Praying to become humbled might mean that we would become homeless. Author Jonathan Acuff once said “Never pray for patience and humility. Patience is the beard you’ll have whenever God answers your prayers and humility is the barrel you will be wearing after God takes away all of your stuff.” Pride is a struggle for almost everyone at some point in their lives. It’s bad in the world, but sometimes it’s worse in the church. How does it creep in? I know where I was at in life, whenever God saved me. I know it was nothing I could have done on my own. Yet I constantly see areas of my life, where I look down on others? I start comparing people on some kind of imaginary spiritual level. I’m not anything special or great. The only good thing about me, is the Spirit that lives inside me. I’m blessed just by being alive today.
if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land. (2 Chronicles 7:14) Resolve: Make right any wrongs between yourself and others So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. (Matthew 5:23-24) I will not go to bed this evening or live this day without doing all that is possible to correct any wrongs between myself and others. For Further Study Read: Philippians 2:3-11
What would it look like for you to take these verses and apply them in your life. What are some specific Scripture says it pretty clear. God opposes the proud. ways you might do this? He gives grace to the humble. Whenever it comes to our relationship with God there is no room for pride. Read the following passages of scripture and learn In fact lets look at the definition of pride: about humility in the life of a believer, and what it means to be humble. What does each scripture say Pride: Verb: Be especially proud of a particular quality about it? or skill.Noun: A feeling of pleasure from one’s own achievements, the achievements of those with whom 1 Peter 5:6 one is associated, or from qualities or possessions that 2 Chronicles 7:14 are widely admired. Matthew 23:12 James 4:6 Reflect back on your life over the past couple of Ephesians 2:8-9 weeks. Do you see any areas where this has been an Luke 18:9-14 issue? Think long and hard about this one. Pray that 2 Corinthians 11:30 God will reveal this to you in areas where you may not Ephesians 4:2 have even noticed it. Micah 6:8 Deuteronomy 8:2 It might be that like me, you need an extra day to 1 John 1:9 process back through this one. If that’s the case do Proverbs 16:18 it. Make it a 31 day journey. Whatever it takes. Let’s get to the root of this one. Once you get there, reflect and pray through this verse Watch Pray Revive
And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. (1 John 5:14)
When you pray are you praying according to the will of God?
Think about what you are praying whenever you pray. If all of your prayers were answered today, what would change?
Your world? or THE world?
Being the Domino: Heart Support Jake Luhrs shares about Heart Support a non-profit organization built on a foundation of faith: one that desires to strengthen and encourage others.
is Jake Luhrs and Kris Welch; newlyweds who are teaming up to reach the overlooked, overheard or just plain frustrated youth. The vision for Heart Support was birthed on a U.S. tour when Jake felt the Lord was calling him to start an online community. Jake had always dedicated time to talk to fans after shows, allowing him to connect on a deeper level, yet still prohibiting any real relationship because of time restraints on the road. He immediately called Kris and started to build a team and put the ministry together.
This is a ministry that caught my eye earlier this year. Lead by front-man of the hardcore Christian metal band August Burns Red, Jake Luhrs is on to something. The world is desperate for something real, something that is authentic, and honest. They are looking at us as Christians to see if what we’ve got is real. This month’s feature starts with a question:
Why don’t more people ask us about our hope? Have you ever wondered about that? The answer is something the church doesn’t want to hear. The answer is that we probably look as if we hope in the same things they do. Whenever our lives don’t look any different than the world’s, why would they want what we’ve got? Heart Support is a ministry that seems to be focused on changing that perception. Honesty & Integrity Those aren’t just words that look good on paper, this is something to be modeled, sought after, and lived out. In the world we live in today, those are two words that are hard to find. Heart Support seems to be intently focused on living out those two words. For those of you who have ever struggled with addictions, this ministry is a breathe of fresh air. I’ve struggled in so many areas with addictions, and to be honest, my heart truly goes out to those who are struggling with addiction. I know what they are going through, and the gut-wrenching honesty among the group here is almost a double-edged sword for me if that makes sense. I can relate so much to their stories that it brings me to a place where I can remember where I was at, yet know where my God has brought me over the past few years. Heart Support is focused on addictions, depression, relationships, and spiritual challenges. One of the most convicting statements on their website asks this question:
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How is it we can feel so fulfilled in a moment of satisfying something so destructive? Heart Support is focused on complete interaction with their community. They have a Q&A section that allow you to ask them questions and they respond. Their blog is a wonderful resource of thoughts and encouragement. Share is another very encouraging aspect of this ministry. User submitted stories and victories of people just like you and me who are winning the fight for integrity and honesty one day at a time. For me, the Prayer Wall is one of the highlights of their website. As heartbreaking as some of the prayer requests can be, this is an opportunity for us to go before the Lord, and pray for others who are struggling! Guys, I can’t tell you what it means to me to know that someone is praying for me. The slogan for Domino Ministries is to be the domino that God uses to touch the lives of others, and what better way to do this, than through prayer! “Heart Support is a non-profit organization built on a foundation of faith; one that desires to strengthen and encourage others. We wanted to have a place where people could go to talk about certain issues that may be difficult to open up with others about. Whether it’s a taboo subject, or someone simply doesn’t have anyone to talk to, they have Heart Support. Our goal is to form relationships, ones that go beyond giving a kind word, but instead allow people a permanent resource.”
Interview with Jake Luhrs Whenever this ministry started out it was called Your Life Ministries. How did this get started? What gave you the idea for doing this? I was on tour two years ago and I feel God told me that He really wanted me to give more time to my fans and to really make more of an impact in their lives rather than just music. God wanted me to give them more of my time and energy and focus on their lives and what they needed from me as they had been providing for my career to continue to flourish. So one night i had to get out pen and paper and God just kept filling my mind with all of these ideas for the website and what I would do with it and even gave it the name YourLife.. Because it is just that!
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Feature Article God gave us life but it’s up to you what you do with it. It is YOURLIFE that is important and what you’ve gone through and how you deal with it can make or break things in your life. It’s about desiring change and finding a way to create that change and execute it. It’s about seeking God’s face and building a relationship with Him. One that is so strong that it overcomes all that you will face. Knowing that God has grace and mercy but also a plan for us all. That He IS LOVE and that anything is possible when calling on Jesus Christ. Tell us a little something about the team. I’ve got quite a few on the team now which is a huge blessing! Everyone has their specific role as far as what they feel they should do to be involved. Not everyone post blogs but their is a lot of behind the scenes. Some who have dealt with alcoholism and drugs write and reply to letters that deal with those situations. Others reply to a lot of the porn letters… Kris is our editor and my partner in crime! and Matt Greiner video blog editor and has been working very closely with Brick By Brick a ministry he started about 8 months ago. Christopher Carroll helps with letters and guest blogging. In a world where the truth is seldom shared, Your gut-level honesty approach to ministry is very refreshing. You guys don’t seem to hold anything back, how has the response been to that? We want to be genuine because thats what people want! They want to know YOU, not know what you want them to know. We aren’t perfect and we know how broken we are but our relationships with Christ are what is most important to us. We aren’t pastors, we aren’t preachers, doctors, therapists,… we are followers of Christ. Thats it! We have the desire to help reach out to kids, friends, families anyone; to give them words of encouragement, hope and let them know how much God loves them.The response has been good so far. Of course their are some who make fun of us or hate on us, but if you don’t have anyone opposing you.. chances are you probably aren’t doing something right. haha Of course when you stand up for something so firmly.. you’ll get people who just want to oppose your strength in your beliefs. It’s the way man kind works.. But most people are really encouraged and inspired by what it is we are doing. We are thankful that people are willing to even go to the site and participate.. It’s amazing the stories kids send us and speak on. It’s very humbling to read them because it makes me so thankful for what God has given me and that some of the things i’ve gone through are similar with these letters .. so i’m thankful that God would use me to help others in the same boat. What are some of the biggest things that people seem to be struggling with? A lot of people are struggling with porn, depression, suicide, and the biggest is understanding God’s love. A lot of people have these smaller issues like smoking and drinking and drug use because of the biggest problem which is them not loving themselves, and them not seeing how much they are loved.
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Feature Article I’ve gotten emails from people who are cutters and they do it because they are so numb in their hearts that they want to actually know they can still FEEL something. Some have father issues and ask how do I see God as a father figure.. Or why would God want me because of all the poor decisions i’ve made.. I’m dirty and useless and worthless.. t’s tough and sometimes my answers aren’t exactly the best or what they want to hear but it’s from my heart.. and I pray all the time that God just speak through me and use my voice as a vessel to carry His love along through words and my actions. What are some of the challenges your ministry faces? Finances and just spreading the word. I don’t really have a lot of money to pour into this ministry and we are just looking for ways to spread the word on the ministry. We have currently made some big changes were Yourlife Ministries is being absorbed by Heart Support. Heart Support is a ministry founded by Craig Gross of xxxchurch but saw what I was doing with YourLife and wanted to team up. So now that we are working together and have changed the name from YourLife to Heart Support we are trying to spread the word. The ministry itself has no money to really work with so we are just praying that more people care to donate and support so that we can move forward. What are some ways that others can help? Donations, prayer, and taking part! Join Heart Support and contribute your story and share with others and encourage others through you stories of victories and overcoming addictions etc! Join the community! “Be the domino that God uses to touch the lives of others”. Think “domino effect”. How do you see Your Life as a domino? It’s all about giving to others and supporting one another. It’s about fellowship.. it is so crucial to have others who you can count on and people who will pick you up when you are down, and pray for you when you are struggling or going through tough times. It’s paying back to one another.. thats the domino effect. Thank you so much Jake for taking the time to answer these questions.
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Enduring Stories stories of the Persecuted Church
One Year Later... Where is Hope?
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Catastrophic monsoon rains that swept through the country in July and August 2010 affected some 20 million people, destroyed 1.7 million homes and damaged 5.4 million acres of land.
A girl floats her brother across flood waters while salvaging valuables from their flood ravaged home on August 7th, 2010 in the village of Bux Seelro near Sukkur, Pakistan. (Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images)
Last year there seemed to be very little news about the floods that devastated Pakistan. Outside of the initial reports on the news a couple of follow ups, there wasn’t much discussion about what happened over here in the US. I’m sure that we were pretty busy with our own news at that time. Lady Gaga rekindling a “Bad Romance” with her ex, Charlie Sheen throwing his wife to the ground in a brawl, and Jennifer Aniston’s advice telling the world that “You don’t have to wait on a man to have a child.” Yep, I’d say we were in our own little world over here. I have never been a fan of the news. Most of what I see being reported is nothing but tabloid garbage. In fact over the past couple of years, I have gotten extremely out of touch with current events. I feel like I would go out of my way to avoid them. Over the past few months, though, something has changed. I still don’t read anything under “Entertainment” headlines, but the news lately has caught my attention. A few months ago I started doing some 30 Days of Prayer campaigns, one for Nigeria, and the other for Sudan. During those two months I began to get re-acquainted with the news. I discovered something during those two months. The news hasn’t really changed all that much. The focus is still on celebrity gossip, politics, and war. There are still dozens of analysts debating and arguing trying to prove that their point of view is the one everyone should have. Sex still sells, and the “shock and awe” tactic that reporters utilize still manages to captivate the mindless. Things for the most part, were pretty much the same, with one exception. Me. Watch Pray Revive
Enduring Stories I had changed. I’m not sure exactly what happened, but somehow I have managed to sift through the garbage to find something worth holding onto. It’s a hidden word in this fallen world. A word called
Hope is a firm assurance regarding things that are unclear and known. The biblical definition is “confident expectation.”
For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. I was reading an article posted on the Open Doors website (Romans 8:24-25) that said many of the Christian flood victims in Pakistan are still homeless. Hope and Faith go hand in hand. Compass Direct News said many “Remain homeless despite a plan by the Punjab govt. to allocate land to residents in the area.”
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. (Hebrews 11:1)
One of the residents said “Christians in this area are not rich people. They lost their houses and lands in the flood, but the quota system has not been allowed for them, and no minority member has been allotted land.”
I have hope because I have faith. My hope is not in the things of this world. See whenever I see the news or read the headlines, I see hope because I know that this world isn’t all that there is. I know that there is something more than what we see. Who hopes for what he sees?
For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. (Romans 8:24-25) There have been many reports saying that Christians have been treated unfairly, and that many of them have been ignored.” It has been said that the government was to allot the land to only Muslims in the southern Punjab Province. Did you realize that nearly 2,000 people died as a result of the 2010 flooding in Pakistan? Did you know that around 20 million lost their property? Hope. How do you read a story like this and see hope?
Faith is that assurance of Hope, if you have put your faith in Christ. The same thing that is supposed to be the object of our hope is the the object of our faith. The big question is where do you place your hope? Are you putting your hope into the things of this world, or are you trusting in Jesus Christ, who is the Author and the Perfector of our faith? Where is all of your confidence and trust placed? Who do you turn to when life gets tough? Where do you run to, whenever you are struggling? Who do you spend your time praising? Who are you worshiping? Take some time to consider these questions.
I think it begins with what you believe about hope. Most people understand hope as wishing thinking. “I hope this will happen” “I hope to do this” or “I hope to get that”. We use the word hope very flippantly.
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Barnabas Aid reports “Over 60 violent attacks against Christians in India this year “With two - three incidents of violence against the community each week in 2011, Christians in India, continue to face the worst ever persecution in India.” Rev. Dr. Richard Howell, General Secretary, Evangelical Fellowship of India
Over 60 violent anti-Christian attacks were recorded in India during the first half of 2011 as Hindu extremists continue to target churches, pastors and Christian families.
In one incident in Jharkhand state at the end of May, five Christian families fled their homes in fear after being beaten up by Hindu extremists. One woman was hospitalised, suffering internal injuries, while another woman - a mother of three - was abducted and held for a month until a court ordered her release. Police have failed to make any arrests in connection with this incident. In April, an angry mob of 150 Hindu extremists attacked a Christian worship meeting in Delhi and indiscriminately beat up participants, including women and children. Two Christians required hospital treatment for head injuries. The assailants also destroyed furniture and vehicles. Saul Pradhan, a 45-year-old Christian pastor, whose house was torched by Hindu fundamentalists two years ago, was found dead in Kandhamal, Orissa state, in January. The police claimed that his death was due to cold, but Saul’s body bore marks of assault. There are many more examples listed on the website. What do you do in these kinds of situations? How do you respond? To be honest, I’m not sure how I would respond. I would like to say that I would persevere and stand strong, but in all honesty I struggle with doing either of those things in much lighter situations, that don’t even compare to what they are dealing with. Take a some time to pray about this. How would you respond? Not the “Sunday School answer”, but in all honesty how would you handle these kinds of situations? Put yourself and your family in their stories. What would you do? “Rather than protecting the Christian community, the police ofen take action against them.” Can you imagine? Hope. I believe that the Persecuted Church could teach us a thing or two about hope. I think we have much to learn from them, and what they endure. I had a lot of intentions to write much about the perscuted this month, but this story has prompted a different action. Prayer. Watch Pray Revive
Prayer Requests Please pray that my friend, Heather and her family will invite me over to their home for Christmas. It will be right after I’m done with boot camp. Pray that God will make a way for me to go; that the vacation time will be enough, and for travel provisions to go. Pray that I’ll be closer to Heather and I’ll get to know her family, and for love and joy in the home. Thanks -Seth
Thank you so much. - Rob We are on the verge of homelessness. God has a plan we know. We pray that his plan is revealed to us now. - Dan
Sometimes, i quit for like 3 days, then i find out my Dad has been looking at Porn, cause i look at the history whenever I have Vertigo, been sick for 5 months. I cry every day and im home. And then it drives me back again. Should i tell my beg for mercy on this dreadful inner ear disorder. I lost my Dad that i look at porn? even though im in college? Please job, most relationships, and beg for mercy.I’m scared! God help me please help me. - Jeremy -Kev I struggle with a secret addiction. No one else knows, but I’m Rosario Silvester from Tirupur,India i need a prayer it is destroying me on the inside. request for my sister Nisha. she is a loving sister for me on - struggling april she birth her child her name is Smitha, there is a lot of problems always arising for my sister nisha because of her I have a friend who scheduled a hysterectomy for next husband and her family members they were always make Tuesday, she has had so many health issues, endometriosis her tensed my sister is always crying due to these problem has potentially gone into her intestines again, they wont she is unhappy. Brother i m requesting you to please pray know until surgery. This is already a huge thing, but it for my sister she should be happy always in her life and could be very intense. Her emotions are so broken, and give good thought to her husband and his family members her pain is more than she can endure. Please pray for her to make my sister to be Happy always. please pray to Jesus peace, comfort, healing, and trust that OUR GOD, is all she to bless my sister Nisha. needs. And for her eyes to be set upon Him, and not any - Rosario circumstance, or disappointment. -CNM I am praying for financial freedom in all areas of my life - Ella My dear friend Ann Earnest suffered a massive stroke 1 year ago May. She has undergone a very stringent rehab I request pray for deliverance of depression and anger and even with partial paralysis she continues to show great management for Jordan and JaCari. And patience and improvement. Thank God. She has asked for continued understanding for myself. prayer, she was very heavily involved with the WWII - Kim Veterans and feels God has something great in store for her in the near future! Let’s pray for Ann Please pray for Monique Cumpian a 30 year old single -JW mother of two boys. She just found out she has cervical cancer. She doesn’t have the finances to do the extra tests My life became a cycle of failure, repentance, resolve, that are suggested. So her doctor told her be as healthy as and re-peated failure. Occasionally I’d last weeks, or even you can be & hopefully her immune system can fight it off. months, but all the while I was in a downward spiral of - Angela increasing guilt, confusion, bitterness, and hopelessness. It was a private struggle that I hid form everyone. In the Please pray that my son’s mother comes home and meetings of the church, I put on a brave face, but at home, chooses to be a part of our family. We need her. I want in the shadows, my life was comming undone. Now my my son to have his mother. I love her dearly and miss her. family has left me, and I am all alone. Please pray for me, Please pray that God reveals himself to her and shows her and for others who are struggling so that it may not be too that her family is the right place to be. Please also pray late for them. that the forces that keep her away and the bad influences -rom be bound and taken away so she can see clearly. Please pray she chooses us instead of the bar and the drugs.
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Searching for More - continued from page 3
looking for them, just in case.”
I think sometimes we choose to think of the will of God in our lives simply as a distraction.
Truth is, God wants you to know Him. He isn’t lost. He isn’t hiding. He isn’t unknowable. God’s not hiding. He’s been looking for you for a long time. Wanna know why? He wants you to know who He is and who you are in Him. God is seeking you so ou can know what you were created to do. He’s seeking you so you can find Him and value Him with all of your heart.
What God calls us to do, might actually change our own plans. If I do what God is calling me to do, then I won’t have time to do what I want to do.
He’s seeking you because He’s God, and He knows that you can’t live without Him.
Worship. It’s what we were made to do. Everybody worships something. Do you worship the Lord, or are you just playing church?
Prideful. Silence scares me sometimes. What would happen in my life if I actually did what God wanted me to do? Do I even want to know what those things are? What if it meant a really tough conversation with someone I didn’t want to have? What if it meant I spent my money in a different way? What if it meant He wanted me to share the Gospel with someone that I think would be hostile about hearing it? See how this works? All the “What if’s” start coming in. Focus on Christ. Suddenly I am focused on all of the “what if” scenerio’s instead of being focused on Jesus. See how easy it is for the enemy to steal our focus away from Jesus and back onto ourselves? Worship. What does it really mean to you? Are you one of those who walks into church to receive instead of to give? Are you running low and trying to get “refilled” on Sunday morning? Do you lay your baggage down at the altar every Sunday, and go back and grab it before you leave? Would your life look any different if you weren’t at a church service on Sunday? Aren’t you tired? We waste so much time searching for “more”. We know that God is there, but we keep looking for that elusive word – “more” just in case God isn’t it. Are you kidding me?? I think it’s funny sometimes how we go about “searching for God” as if He were lost. It reminds me of an old joke about a guy who lost his keys. Whenever he was asked if he had found them yet, his response “Yeah, but I’m still
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“God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supplies.” Hudson Taylor
“We talk of the Second Coming; half the world has never heard of the first.” Oswald J. Smith “The history of missions is the history of answered prayer.” – Samuel Zwemer
“Lots of people say they want to reach the nations, but they’re not praying...not going...not sending others.
“Prayer is the mighty engine that is to move the missionary work.” – A.B. Simpson Millions hav never heard of Jesus. We ought not 2 ask, “Can I prove that I ought to go?’ but “Can I prove that I ought not to go?” -Spurgeon
“When we say unreached, we’re not just talking about lostness, we’re talking about access. Unreached means that they don’t even have access to hear the gospel. There’s no church, no Christian, no Bible available... God has not just commanded us to make the gospel known among as many people as possible. He has commanded us to make the gospel known among all the peoples.” -David Platt