Crying Out To God

July 27, 2008

A word received 7/27/08: Cry out to me for my people. They are wandering over every hillside. Call them back to me. Do not be afraid to speak my word to my people. I AM. I AM the Good Shepherd. I care for my flock.

Albany Intercessor

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Province of Jerusalem and the Middle East

July 27, 2008

Karen has already posted Mouneer Anis’s request for prayer. The Most Rev. Dr. Mouneer H. Anis is Bishop of the Episcopal/Anglican Church in Egypt,North Africa and the Horn of Africa; and is President Bishop of the Episcopal/Anglican Province of Jerusalem and the Middle East. In response to the request, this comment by GA/FL on StandFirm includes a prayer which points to Jerusalem:

This is the time, if ever, for Anglicans to pray. Praying for the peace of Jerusalem…the Church, the Bride of Christ will prevail in us against the unrepentant and unregenerate who have captured her in their power for some time.

Hear Isaiah 62:6-7:
“O Jerusalem, I have posted watchmen on your walls;
they will pray day and night, continually.
Take no rest, all you who pray to the Lord.
Give the Lord no rest until he completes his work,
until he makes Jerusalem the praise of the earth.”

The word Jerusalem is made of two Hebrew words, ‘Yireh’ and ‘Shalom’
Yireh means ‘worship’ ‘revere’ ‘awe’ ‘hallow’ and Shalom means ‘All God’s blessings and Peace’

As we establish ourselves in the right attitude toward God that is worship (in the beauty of holiness, in awe, in Spirit and Truth, praise, thanksgiving) we (His Bride) are joined to Him in holy union…and He establishes the peace and is able to come to His Bride give her what she yearns for Himself, what she needs: His Word, His Seed to bring new life, hope, peace, blessings.

The Bride must worship first to establish herself in right and true relation and unity with Him.

Before She worships, she must take a bath, must repent, must reconcile wrongs, make amends, bring forth the ‘fruit meet for repentance.’

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.

Pray for the Church, for the lost and sleeping, and innocent children within her gates.

May the Lord convict, wake, redeem, wash and restore The Bride’s first love devotion, defend, guard and deliver her from evil, sustain her love for Him with His holy beautiful Presence. Amen.


Our Wounded Anglican History: A Scottish King for England

July 27, 2008

This is part 14 of a 15 part series examining the historical antecedents of the Anglican Communion.

And thy servant is in the midst of thy people whom thou hast chosen, a great people, that cannot be numbered or counted for multitude. Give thy servant therefore an understanding mind to govern thy people, that I may discern between good and evil; for who is able to govern this thy great people?”

1 Kings 3: 7-9

Queen Elizabeth I was wooed by many suitors, but she never married.  She was almost certainly attracted to men, and although she was known as the virgin queen, she may have had sexual affairs with men both before and after her coronation.  But she was her father’s daughter, and she did not relish the idea of sharing power with a king consort.  She weighed her desire to have an heir against her desire to wield power on her own, and died childless, the last living child of Henry VIII, and the last English monarch named Tudor. 

When Elizabeth died, there was only one remaining descendant of her grandfather, King Henry VII.  Margaret Tudor, older sister of Henry VIII, had married into the Scottish royal family.  Margaret’s son was King James V of Scotland.  He had only a single child who survived to adulthood, Mary Stuart, known to us as Mary Queen of Scots.  She was the granddaughter of Margaret Tudor.  Elizabeth had executed Mary for participation in plots by Catholic factions to kill or depose her.  With Mary executed, her son became next in line for England’s throne.  This was King James VI of Scotland, crowned at the age of one when Mary was forced by Scottish nobles to abdicate her throne.  Upon the death of Elizabeth in 1603 he became King James I of England.

 James was eager to unite the kingdoms of Scotland and England into a single realm of which he, of course, would be king.  This idea was opposed by the Parliaments and the nobles in both countries.  Throughout his reign, James would have a stormy relationship with the British Parliament.  Typically, James would call Parliament into session, ask it to enact a law or provide him with financial support.  Parliament would not do as he asked,  James would dismiss Parliament and attempt to meet his objectives by royal decree. 

In 1605, however, matters took a violent turn.  Shortly before the opening session of Parliament, a man named Guy Fawkes  was apprehended in the basement of the Parliament building with a pile of wood and thirty six barrels of gunpowder.  He was part of a plot to blow up Parliament during its opening session.  The overall plan had been to kill most of the members of government and the king, all of whom would have attended the opening session.  The royal children were to have been kidnapped, and a revolt was to have been fomented in Catholic sympathizing areas of the country.  The goal was to restore a Catholic monarch to England’s throne.  As the conspirators were captured, their interrogation by torture was expressly authorized by James.  All were executed, including the Catholic priest whose sole crime had been to be the confessor of the plotters.

The religious problems faced by James were not limited to those presented by Catholics, however.  James was raised in a thoroughly Protestant court.  The Church of Scotland had broken from Rome under the leadership of John Knox, and was organized largely under principles advocated by John Calvin, whom Knox had met while studying on the Continent.  

The Puritan movement in the Church of England held that the English Reformation had been derailed by Elizabeth, and they wanted the reforms completed.  When James came to the throne, a group of Puritan clergy had presented him with a petition signed by as many as 1,000 clerics, demanding further distancing of the Church of England from practices that they considered popery.  Among the practices  they wanted eliminated were the signing of the cross during baptism, confirmation, use of wedding rings, bowing at the name of Jesus, most priestly vestments, and even the use of the term, priest. 

James, however, was neither an admirer of the Scottish church, which was very similar to the church the Puritans wanted, nor did he wholeheartedly endorse the views of John Knox and John Calvin.  He preferred the ecclesiastical organization of the Church of England, ruled by the king through bishops.  He called the Puritans to a conference in 1604, at which he got them to agree to retain the existing structure of the English church.  The most notable result of the conference, however, was that James agreed to commission a new translation of the Bible into English.  That translation utilized the best scholars and ancient manuscripts then available.  The first edition was published in 1611 and it is still in wide use today:  we are all familiar with the King James Bible. 

James was a strong believer in the divine right of kings.  Since he had been crowned king of Scotland at the age of one, he certainly would never have been conscious of a time when he was not a king.  His son, Charles, inherited this belief, along with the disdain that James had for Parliament.  When Charles took the throne, these attitudes, together with Puritan dissatisfaction with the scope of reform in the Church of England, would lead to tragic results.                    

Father , we have sinned against you and against your laws.  We have conspired against those you set in authority over us.  We have murdered.  We have tortured.  We have executed priests for performing their clerical functions.  We have done all of this in your name.   

Father, we continue today in our arrogance and our hatred of ideas that disagree with our own.  Our church remains fractured and  broken.  Forgive us, Father.  Forgive our ancestors.    

Have mercy, Father.  Use the blood shed by Jesus on the cross to cleanse the sins of our ancestors and our own sins.  Wipe clean this stain on our history.  Restore us.  Break the cycle of repeated sins.  Free us from bondage to this history.  Begin a new creation in which you are our God and we are your people. 

Through Jesus Christ our Lord and true King.

Amen.                                                    


Fatigue

July 27, 2008

Rev. Todd Wetzel spoke of the fatigue at Canterbury. This was a post Karen made following the primates’ meeting in Dromantine. She said, “The only antidote I know for this kind of confusion and fatigue is to take our eyes off of our immediate circumstances and fix them back on the Lord and all the reasons we have to praise and thank Him: first and foremost for the salvation He offers us in Christ and the pardon for our sins, the Way to be reconciled to Him and restored to fellowship and Communion with Him.”

Ps 118: selected verses (NIV)

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.
The LORD is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?
It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man.
It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in princes.
The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation.
Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!
I will give you thanks, for you answered me; you have become my salvation.
The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone;
the LORD has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes.
This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.
The LORD is God, and he has made his light shine upon us. With boughs in hand, join in the festal procession up to the horns of the altar.
You are my God, and I will give you thanks; you are my God, and I will exalt you.
Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.


Abp. Mouneer Anis requests prayer especially on July 28

July 27, 2008

In a blog entry, Abp., Mouneer Anis, the Primate of Jerusalem and the Middle East has requested special prayer on his behalf, and presumably other orthodox leaders for tomorrow, Monday July 28.  Here is part of what he has written:

Please pray for me because on Monday 28 July we will have another debate. Last Wednesday the TEC bishops were well prepared and spoke very bluntly, making it clear that there is no turning back. I will present my thoughts to them on Monday. I pray to God for strength and direction, that He may direct my thoughts and words.

Please pray for me and all of the bishops as we determine a way ahead from this crisis, as we determine where do we want to go from here.

May the Lord bless you!

Yours in Christ,
+Mouneer Egypt

His whole blog entry is here.
I’m not sure exactly what the debate is to which +Mouneer is referring.  I will review the program for tomorrow, that may give greater clarity.  I will post any new information I find in the morning.  Please do thank God for bold orthodox leaders such as +Mouneer Anis, +Daniel Deng Bul, +Gregory Venables and many others, and keep them in prayer much in this final week of Lambeth!


Some suggested prayer needs for the Lambeth Conference

July 27, 2008

The Rev. Todd Wetzel suggests a number of specific areas for prayer regarding the Lambeth conference.  The conference is now just a bit past the half-way point.

To inform your prayers, here are four things we believe need serious prayer:

1) Spiritual warfare is real and it is intense. Please pray for spiritual protection over Canterbury, Kent University and especially over the orthodox bishops, that they might be bold and courageous in spite of mounting opposition.

2) The drain on one’s emotions is real. We are in an intense environment and it sucks the life out of you. Even when not much appears to be happening, you feel tired.

3) The intellect is on overload. This is a rich environment of thought and an environment beset by controversy. So far, no matter how hard the wheels spin, no solutions have been found. The sense of frustration at least at the leadership level, is very real. Patience is wearing thin.

4) Physically, at least for those from the west, we’ve all done more walking than ever required to do at home. While this is healthy, it does wear on the body. The cobblestone streets, though charming, make walking semi-perilous.


The only limits to prayer are the promises of God

July 27, 2008

One of the good friends of Lent & Beyond is blogger Pat Dague, whose blog Transfigurations we particularly love for the wonderful illustrated devotionals Pat posts almost daily. A few days ago Pat posted a short devotional on the power of prayer by E.M. Bounds. It is a great reminder and a help for those of us who may be struggling to persevere in prayer for the Lambeth conference.

***

“How vast are the possibilities of prayer! How wide is its reach! What great things are accomplished by this divinely appointed means of grace! It lays its hand on Almighty God and moves Him to do what He would not otherwise do if prayer was not offered. It brings things to pass which would never otherwise occur. The story of prayer is the story of great achievements. Prayer is a wonderful power placed by Almighty God in the hands of His saints, which may be used to accomplish great purposes and to achieve unusual results. Prayer reaches to everything, takes in all things great and small which are promised by God to the children of men. The only limits to prayer are the promises of God and His ability to fulfill those promises. ‘Open thy mouth wide and I will fill it.'” …EM Bounds


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