Thursday, May 23, 2013
missions for life™
NAME October 2012
1. ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA (A-dis AH-bah-bah) - “Recently I was visiting with some college students on a campus in our city. I was talking to them about the Bible and how it is like a road map for my life. These students were very interested and asked me lots of questions. I asked them if they had Bibles. One of the young men, B, told me that he did have a Bible in his home. I asked him if he read it, and he said, ‘Not really.’ We continued our conversation, and I explained how significant the Bible was to me and why. He then asked me, ‘What do you do if you try to read the Bible but you do not understand it?’ In that moment, I realized immediately that the Father had completely ordained our time together. I talked to them about studying the Bible with others. They were so excited and wanted to know if we could study the Bible together. B said that he had several friends who would want to come. Please lift up B and a female student, Y. Ask the Father to continue to draw them to Himself, and pray that they will become people who build the kingdom on their campus and in this city. Please pray that we will be able to begin training these two students and their friends who are interested. Pray that this group will be the first of many on this college campus!”
2. AMHARA OF ETHIOPIA (ahm-HAR-ah) - In the highlands of Ethiopia, key influential, born-again religious leaders have been trained to evangelize and disciple their rural “sheep” who are non-literate, by using oral methods. Please pray that the leaders will faithfully share the Gospel and disciple their flocks in these isolated areas. Pray for wisdom, obedience and fruit. Ask that many people will be born again and that groups will form as these farmers and their families continue to teach others what they have learned. Pray that the Holy Spirit will sweep across the highlands and bring a great spiritual awakening among the people.
3. ARAB PEOPLES OF CENTRAL UNITED KINGDOM - A local church held their second annual holiday club for children. Of the 36 children registered, approximately 20 of them were from Arab people groups. Give thanks to God for these children whose parents allowed them to come in the middle of Ramadan (their holy month of fasting). Claim the promise of Isaiah 55:11: “. . . so My word that comes from My mouth will not return to Me empty, but it will accomplish what I please, and will prosper in what I send it (to do).” The children heard a clear presentation of the Gospel twice. Pray that the Bible verses they memorized will be used to sow seeds of truth in their lives.
4. ARAB PEOPLES OF CENTRAL UNITED KINGDOM - Praise the Lord! The volunteers who came in July were a big help, and through this, God has provided a way for personnel to proceed in future work among Arab peoples in Central United Kingdom.
5. DRUZE OF THE LEVANT (drooz) - There are approximately 1 million Druze (pronounced drooz) in the Levant. The Druze are village and mountain dwellers who are largely isolated from other groups of society. Most Druze struggle to make a living as farmers, builders, or small shop owners. Their religion is shrouded in secrecy and is closed to converts. The Druze are divided into two groups: those who learn the secrets and teachings of their doctrine and those who do not. The religious Druze are called the Uqqal, or “the enlightened ones.” These are the religious elite and can be recognized by their traditional clothing: black baggy pants, black shirts, and white hats for the men; long black dresses and white head coverings for the women. Those who do not know the secrets or actively practice the religion are called the Juhhal, or “the ignorant ones.” Their religious beliefs stem from Judaism, Islam, Christianity, Gnosticism and Neo-Platonism. The Druze can read the Arabic translation of the Bible, which is available in the Levant; however, there are only a few Druze who follow Jesus. Please pray for the salvation of the Druze of the Levant.
6. DRUZE OF THE LEVANT (drooz) - Pray that the Father will use the Druze’s quest for knowledge to open their eyes to behold wondrous things from His law.
7. GURAGE OF ETHIOPIA (goo-ra-gay) - In July, you were asked to pray for several new believers. They have been meeting to watch the “JESUS” film and learn who Jesus is. Continue to pray for them and their families, asking that through the life of Jesus, they will learn what it means to follow Him. Pray that the evil one will not discourage them, but that the will of God will prevail.
8. HADRAMAUT YEMENI ARABS OF YEMEN (HAH-drah-maht YEH-muh-nee) - With troubles in the Hadramaut, many people from villages have fled to the cities. Now some of the villages are safe to return to, but people are afraid to do so and for some, their homes have been destroyed. Pray that the needs of these people will be met. In their wanderings, pray that they will be given Scriptures or see movies that tell the story of another homeless person, Abraham, whom God blessed. Pray that they will hear the Good News.
9. KABYLE BERBERS OF ALGERIA AND FRANCE (kuh-BEEL BER-bers) - Pray for peace, protection and acceptance in a North African village where clashes occurred between believers and followers of a world religion. The conflict erupted after the villagers demanded the closure of a Christian place of worship, a church that meets in a privately owned building. Armed villagers stormed the building during the usual prayer meeting. The Christians continued praying as tensions mounted and verbal assaults escalated. Violence was narrowly avoided due to the intervention of wise village elders and the alerting of the police. The villagers launched a petition demanding the departure and the closing of the church, which they claim was never authorized to open its doors. This is not the first time this kind of conflict has happened in this region, which is an area whose population is known for placing a high value on freedom of religion and democratic expression. Other towns have faced similar opposition in the past, and in one place, an entire village believed and even turned their house of worship into a Christian worship place. The power of God can override all opposition, so remember these believers who have come under persecution for their faith, “for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down of strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.”
10. MIDDLE EASTERN ARABS OF THE UNITED KINGDOM - The language school has been very important this past year in the lives of political refugees and other needy students, preparing them to live in an English-speaking country, find a way to support their families, and live in freedom. Give thanks to God for a study in the Word that has developed in a worker’s home. However, changes in policies of certain embassies, as well as unkept promises of other agencies to supply students, has resulted in not enough full-paying students to support the school. Please petition that all involved will seek the Lord’s direction for the next steps.
11. NORTHERN AFRICAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN PEOPLES - One cluster of related people groups is made up of seven countries or portions of countries that border the Mediterranean Sea, the Nile River and the Red Sea, as well as the East Africa coast where the Swahili-speaking Arabs live. There is a witness among some of these Muslim and Coptic people groups, but many still have not heard the Good News. Pray that the Spirit of God will move mightily among every individual in this cluster. Pray that His Word will be available to all, and that those who are called to be “salt and light” will be obedient.
12. NORTHERN AFRICAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN PEOPLES - Daniel said, “I trust in God, and I have no fear.” This and other truths are what children are learning through Vacation Bible School-like teachings across Europe. Quite often, the parents will join the children and either observe or participate in the activities. One club in particular normally meets in the park; therefore, please pray for an indoor location, such as a community center, to be made available to them during the winter months. As they approach the New Testament teaching, ask that hearts will be opened and, more specifically, that they will embrace the crucifixion as part of God’s plan. Pray that the families will walk in trust and take all the Father’s truths to heart!
13. NORTH AFRICANS OF BELGIUM - The summer is over, and schools are back in session. With this being the case, six North African women will be resuming their weekly Bible study. Pray for these women, as most of their families do not know about their faith in Jesus and they meet in secret for this weekly Bible study. Pray that these six women will grow deeper in the knowledge of who God is in their lives and that they will live lives that are reflective of Jesus.
14. NORTH AFRICANS OF THE NETHERLANDS - The Netherlands is known for bustling cities such as The Hague, Amsterdam and Rotterdam, beautiful canals, and fields of colorful flowers. It is also known as one of the most liberal countries in the world. One thing, however, that isn’t automatically associated with The Netherlands is its very large Muslim population. It is projected that within a few years, the population of Amsterdam, its largest city, could be 50 percent Muslim. There are approximately 500 mosques and 50 Islamic schools in the country. There are many neighborhoods in the large cities where more than 50 percent of the population is made up of North African immigrants. It is common to visit markets in these neighborhoods where more women cover their heads than do not. Two-thirds of Dutch North Africans say they are marginalized by Dutch society. This can form a challenge in reaching them with the Gospel because as “second class citizens,” they are not used to being sought after as friends and companions; it makes forming friendships more difficult. Emotional dissatisfaction can result from the marginalization. For many, it gets expressed in anger and frustration; for others it comes out in despair. Still, followers of Jesus can speak hope into the anger and despair. As the Lord works mightily among the North Africans living in The Netherlands, what He does can be carried back to their homes and families across North Africa. Please pray for the salvation of the North Africans of The Netherlands.
15. NORTH AFRICANS OF THE NETHERLANDS - It is hoped that a small group will soon be formed made up of both North African believers and North African seekers. Pray that this group will both encourage existing North African believers as they meet and fellowship together and introduce many North African Muslims to the beautiful Gospel of Jesus. Please ask the Lord to bring the right people to this group. Lift up the group leader (a North African believer) as he prepares lessons and interacts with other North Africans. Pray that mature believers will have wisdom in helping the North African leader to grow as a leader. Pray for unity for the believers as they meet with one another.
16. NORTHERN AFRICAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN UNENGAGED PEOPLES - Living in the Sahara and the Saharan port cities, the Izarguien of southern Morocco are 16,320 strong. Being from the Berber-Shilha family of people groups, they speak Hassaniyya Arabic. These Sunni Muslims have access to some evangelical resources, including books and videos, but there is not a completed Bible in Hassaniyya. Pray for the one known believer, who reports an active group of believers, to remain faithful to share the Gospel with his family and friends. Pray for there to be a group of believers who meet together faithfully and share with others. Pray for the Bible to be completed in Hassaniyya, their heart language. Ask God to call workers to go in faith to this desert harvest field to help in the bountiful harvest. http://prayerthreads.imb.org
17. PALESTINIAN ARABS OF THE MIDDLE EAST (pal-uh-STIN-ee-uhn) - For almost a year, prayers have been lifted up for opportunities to begin work in a large Palestinian city. There were several promising leads that did not work out, but the door has now opened for an exciting opportunity. Thank God for His faithfulness in putting His harvest workers in the right place at the right time!
18. SHAWIYA BERBERS OF NORTHERN AFRICA AND EUROPE (sha-WEE-yah BER-bers) - The Shawiya people have historically been regarded as among the “lowly” because of their past profession as shepherds, and sadly, this attitude towards them has been carried on for generations. In today’s environment, it is not uncommon for a Shawiya to avoid admitting being Shawiya for fear of being looked down upon. During the distribution of spiritual materials one day, a believer encountered M on a street and, based upon her appearance and dress, asked her if she was Shawiya, since the believer had material in the Shawiya language to offer her. M shyly averted her gaze and shook her head, but there was something in her expression that prompted the believer to inquire more. After some casual conversation, M finally looked around her to see if there was anyone else within earshot. Feeling safer, she softly whispered, “Yes, I am Shawiya, but we prefer for people to think we are Arabs.” God’s love flows for all peoples. Please pray that Shawiyas will experience the love of Jesus through neighbors, government officials, believers, and people everywhere. Pray Romans 13:8 for them: “Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.”
19. SOMALI OF THE HORN OF AFRICA (suh-MAH-lee) - As more and more Somalis turn to the Father, the believers need to have encouragement. Pray for fellowships and groups to multiply in mighty ways throughout the region. Specific prayer is needed to cover the preparations being made within the next few months for a meeting that will bring leaders together for worship and equipping.
20. SOMALI OF THE HORN OF AFRICA (suh-MAH-lee) - As the Word continues to spread throughout the area that is home to this people group, please pray specifically for more trainers to emerge who will bring the Word to unreachable areas. God is able to accomplish this in immeasurable ways, so please plead with confidence for these trainers to emerge from among the millions in darkness.
21. SWAHILI-SPEAKING ARABS OF EAST AFRICA (swah-HEE-lee) - After hearing Truth many times, a woman has chosen to follow the Son. This new believer has also shared her decision with her husband. At this time, the husband has appeared indifferent, but he has allowed her to continue in her new faith without opposition. Please pray that this woman’s family will all become open and responsive to the Good News. Remember this new believer, asking that she will grow in her faith as she is discipled.
22. TIHAMA YEMENI ARABS OF YEMEN (tih-HAH-mah) - Believers have difficulty finding work and permissions for a viable, sustained presence in the Tihama. Often the desired jobs may not lend themselves to showing and sharing God’s love with those around them. Please pray that believers in the Tihama will be able to overcome these obstacles. Ask that many Tihamis will come to faith as a result of faithful believers’ living and verbal testimonies among them.
23. TIHAMA YEMENI ARABS OF YEMEN (tih-HAH-mah) - While believers worldwide were praying for Muslims during Ramadan, God was moving in the Tihama. Several Tihamis heard the Gospel for the first time, others heard Bible stories and personal testimonies, and others received or began reading the Word during that month. Pray that the seeds of truth sown will fall on fertile hearts, producing a great harvest among the Tihama Yemeni Arabs!
24. TUNISIAN ARABS OF SOUTHERN TUNISIA (too-NEE-zhan) - M had always believed that there was something more about that particular prophet. He felt like Jesus might be a prophet on the outside, but that He was God-like on the inside. After searching the Internet, a copy of God’s Word was mailed to him and he read it with gusto. M now carries it around with him everywhere. He obeys all that he reads and shares with everyone he knows. When he came to understand that he needed to be baptized, he had no one to help him. He knew no other believers, so he poured water on himself in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Later he was delighted to find that there were other believers in the country, and when he met some from a neighboring city, he was overjoyed when they said that they would come weekly and help him to learn more. He is sharing with a cousin who is close to believing. Please pray for M and many, many others who are believing and are on their own, without a new family of believers to disciple or encourage them. Ask the Father to give them boldness and the wisdom to share and lead others to join them in this journey of faith!
25. TUNISIAN ARABS OF TUNISIA (too-NEE-zhan) - S is a typical young Tunisian. He is bright, articulate . . . and unemployed. There are very few jobs available for those with college degrees but no work experience. The financial recession in Europe and the political instability since last year’s revolution mean that the economy is very weak. Although he speaks four languages, S cannot find a steady job, and he dislikes depending on his family’s support. Many of his friends drive taxis, pick up odd jobs, or just sit around in the coffee houses, chatting with their friends. S thinks his life will be better if he can leave Tunisia, even though he has no real plans about what he would do or where. Please pray for S and the thousands of other young Tunisians who are unemployed. Ask that they will come in contact with God’s Word through websites and radio programs, and especially through meeting believers. Ask God to speak to these young people through dreams and visions and give them hope for the future by drawing them to Himself. Pray that the believers in Tunisia will be able to find people who are spiritually hungry and point them to the Savior.