Monday, May 28, 2012

Prayer for The Gambia: A 365 Day Global Prayer Journey - May 28 (Day 149)

Today we pray for a country with religious freedom, despite a non-Christian majority religion. Truly the generally positive relationships between Christians and Muslims in this country are a reason for praise! Paul wrote to Timothy to pray for government leaders so believers could live quiet and peaceful lives, and for the spread of the Gospel (1 Timothy 2:1-3). The connection intended is that when Christians are not fighting for their very lives, they have more opportunity to bear witness to the message of the cross. Let's pray for Gambians to do just that! Please read about The Gambia on pages 353-355. One of the members of our prayer community is a missionary in The Gambia, and she sent the following insights for our prayer time:

The Gambia, not the country of my birth, but the country of my heart. As a missionary working among the Wolof people in a rural area of The Gambia, I see a Gambia unseen by the many tourists who visit here for the sun and beaches.

I see people enslaved by the rituals of Islam, but they truly believe that they are following the way that God and their ancestors laid out for them. I see people bound by superstition and fear of the evil spirits. I see people trapped in a vicious cycle of poverty because they can only think about solving today's problems. I see people stubbornly resistant to change because they need to do things the way everyone else does them for fear of public ridicule or worse yet ostracism. My Gambia isn't a land of sun and beaches, but one of people I love enslaved by Islam (with a strong foundation of animism), poverty and the tyranny of social pressure.

Lord, my prayer for the people of The Gambia is that You would break the chains that hold them captive. Pour out Your Spirit and open their eyes to the truth about Jesus the Messiah. Give them courage to follow Jesus whole-heartedly, no matter the cost and to share the gospel boldly with family and friends. Raise up Christian men who can resist the societal pressure toward polygamy. Start a wave of people turning to Christ that will spread rapidly throughout this tiny country transforming it into a land where Christ is pre-eminent.

Thank you for The Gambia's peaceful history and stand for religious freedom. Continue to protect her from the turmoil that has devastated many other African countries. Thank you for her friendly, peace-loving people who make outsiders feel welcome. Thank you, Lord, for giving me the privilege of sharing the gospel with these precious people and being part of the the great work that You are going to do here.

My prayer for today: Lord, thank You for the peaceful lives of most Christians in The Gambia. We pray, Lord, that they will see the opportunity You have given them, develop relationships with Muslims, and then truly seek to share the Good News. We pray that these strong relationships will become truly unity in Christ as these Muslims see the deception of Islam and become turned off by the violence promoted by so many in nearby countries. We pray for unity in the churches and for nominal Christians to go deeper in knowing You. We pray for Your Word to have a prominent place in the Gambian Church and for You to raise up leaders to proclaim it and help people understand its truths. We pray for the purity of Your church in Gambia and for the completion of the tasks You have given her to do. In Jesus' name, amen.

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