Mark 10:17-22

August 14, 2013

Now as He was going out on the road, one came running, knelt before him, and asked him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?” So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘Do not murder,’ ‘Do not steal,’ ‘Do not bear false witness,’ ‘Do not defraud,’ ‘Honor your father and your mother.’ ” And he answered and said to him, “Teacher, all these things I have kept from my youth.” Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow me.” But he was sad at this word, and went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. (Mark 10:17-22)
      Holy Spirit, please help us make the choice to have treasure in heaven by giving what we have to those in need and taking up our cross and following Jesus.

Prayers for the People of the Sudan

Lord Jesus, you have taught us to pray like the widow wearing out the unjust judge, persistently, faithfully, and expectantly. Give us grace to be steadfast and unceasing in prayer for our brothers and sisters in Sudan, for your church, for the needs of our own country and people, and for the needs of our parishes, families, and ourselves.
People: Lord, hear our prayer.

Lord Jesus, you are the Prince of Peace. We gather to raise our voice in prayer for the people of Sudan. Over two million people perished in the civil war between north and south and over 200,000 mover perished in the genocide in Darfur. We pray for the souls of those who have perished in past violence, famine, and disaster, and we pray for the relief and comfort of those maimed or bereaved by the violence, for those made homeless, for widows, for orphans, for beggars in their own land, and for the many exiles outside it.
People: Lord, hear our prayer.

Lord Christ, a large number of those killed in Sudan, lay and clergy alike, died rather than renounce their faith in you. Help, by their example, to be ready to give and account of the faith that is within each of us and to rejoice if we should suffer dishonor or persecution for faithfulness to your name.
People: Lord, hear our prayer.

Lord, the people of Sudan ache for the healing hands of Christ. Make our hands His as we work together with our Sudanese church partners to heal the sick, feed the hungry, clothe the naked, liberate the oppressed, and return the exile, and open all our eyes to your gracious mercy among us.
People: Lord, hear our prayer.

God our Father, we are grateful for the establishment of the country of South Sudan, where the majority of Christians live. We pray for the free practice of religion, for the bishops who travel thousands of miles to confirm, pray and minister to their flock, for the 72 priests who serve 192 parishes. Keep them safe and healthy, and continue to fuel them with your Spirit.
People: Lord, hear our prayer.

Even as we pray for those who are far from us, we pray also for those close to home who need your healing touch. We pray for _________________.

We pray also for those in the military who often protect those who have to other help: _________________.

      “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.” Jim Elliot, martyr who entered into glory January 8, 1956, age 28, in an attempt to bring the gospel to the Waodani people of Ecuador.

Wednesday: 101, 109:1-4(5-19)20-30 * 119:121-144; 2 Samuel 14:21-33; Acts 21:15-26; Mark 10:17-31
Thursday: 105:1-22 * 105:23-45; 2 Samuel 15:1-18; Acts 21:27-36; Mark 10:32-45

      Notes from the Front Line

***** PRAYER TABLE REPORT ST. ANN’S OF AMSTERDAM, (Monday, Aug. 12, 2013, 10-11 a.m. in front of our church at 37 Division Street. Sunny and gorgeous today. Becky Hadley and Deacon Alan Hart presiding at His table today.)

t– denotes received wooden cross made by Dennis Adams of North Carolina.
a–denotes anointed with Holy Oil.

t–JOSE — First-time visitor. He asked for prayer for himself and his family as they seek to settle in our community. When we gave him his cross, he kissed it and put it on right away. He was clasping it as he walked away.

t–BETSY — She is very lonely, and she asked us to pray that God will put a good man in her path to share her life. We prayed that if it be God’s will, she find the companionship and love she so desperately seeks.

a–ETHEL — We prayed for continued healing for her left wrist, which she injured in a fall this past winter when she slipped on the ice while taking food to her neighbors.

REBECCA — She sought prayer for continued healing in her ears and eyes. The hearing is much better since we began praying for her last month at His table. Eye doctors have told her she is getting early signs of glaucoma. We prayed for God to heal her eyes.

POLICEMAN IN CRUISER — (Many of the officers in the city know of us and the positive impact the tables has had on our neighborhood. He smiled and waved at us as he drove by.)

DAVID — Asked for prayer to be strong and stay healthy

Albany Intercessor

Pray for Afghan Christians who have fled to India for refuge

August 14, 2013

Our 30 days of prayer for the Muslim world during Ramadan has ended, but the Muslim world is still much on my heart and in my prayers. Today, a friend directed me to a fascinating article published in the New York Times (of all places!), about Afghan converts to Christianity who have fled to India for safety.

I’d like to encourage you to read it and pray!

Here’s an excerpt:

Between 200 and 250 Afghan converts from Islam to Christianity who feared persecution from the Afghan authorities and the Taliban have found refuge in Delhi.

“The number of coverts to Christianity increased as the U.S. presence increased after the fall of the Taliban,” said Obaid Jan, 33, the pastor, who led the Bible service. “Most of the Christian converts lived in urban areas, so the threat from the Taliban was minimal,” he added.

But the Christian converts started fleeing Afghanistan around 2005, fearing their identities might become public. Most came to India after video footage of their secret churches found its way to Noorin TV, a Kabul-based television network, in May 2009. Their lives were further endangered in 2010, when an influential member of the lower house of the Afghan parliament, Abdul Sattar Khawasi, called for the converts’ execution.

“The Afghans who appeared in this video should be publicly executed,’’ said Mr. Khawasi. “The House should order the attorney general and the N.D.S.’’ – the National Directorate of Security – “to arrest these Afghans and execute them.”

The video showed the faces and the locations of Christian converts. “It put everyone in danger including the rest of our families who were Muslims,” said Pastor Jan, who used to work for a non-governmental organization in Kabul.

What started him on his road to Christianity, he said, was distress over infighting between different Muslim factions in Afghanistan.

“Everybody in Afghanistan claimed to be a true Muslim and kept fighting,” he said. “I couldn’t find a single Muslim in them.”

Then he met some Christian missionaries working in Afghanistan. “The fact that God has given his son to his followers in Christianity is what attracted me towards the religion,” he added.

Pastor Jan left his parents in 2007 after he received a number of threats to his life from Muslim Afghans. His family did not approve of his new religion. “The families of many converts became very hostile when they learned about their conversions,” he added.

Heavenly Father, we thank You that You are drawing people to faith even in the most hostile places in the world. Thank you for those who serve You as bold witnesses in dangerous lands, and thank You for those in Afghanistan, whose hearts You have prepared good soil, so that they have responded to the Word of God when it was proclaimed to them. Father we ask for Your grace and provision for those Afghan believers who have fled for refuge to India. May they continue in their witness, and may they grow as a church. We also pray for those who remain behind in Afghanistan. Encourage, strengthen and protect them, we pray, in the mighty name of Jesus. Amen!

Honduras–Mayan ruins

August 14, 2013

The Copan Ruins are evidence of a large Mayan kingdom of around 20,000 inhabitants and estimated to cover nearly 100 square miles. The mountains of the Cordillera Merendon kept this important archaeological site hidden from Western eyes until the late nineteenth century. Now part of an archaeological park, ( much of the Copan complex is open to the public for exploration. One of the temples in the ruins was built as a portal to the other world.

Adapted from Psalm 148

Praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord from the heavens;
praise him in the heights!
Praise him, all his angels;
praise him, all his hosts!
Praise him, sun and moon,
praise him, all you shining stars!
Praise him, you highest heavens,
and you waters above the heavens!
Let them praise the name of the Lord!
For he commanded and they were created.
And he established them forever and ever;
he gave a decree, and it shall not pass away.

Praise the Lord from the earth,
you great sea creatures of the Gulf of Honduras, the Caribbean Sea, Golfo de Fonseca, and all deeps,
fire and hail, rain and mist, stormy wind fulfilling his word!
Cordillera Merendon, Cerro El Pital, Cerro Las Minas, Mogoton, and all hills,
Banana plantations, coffee trees and all forests!
Beasts and all livestock, creeping things and flying birds!
Kings of the earth and all peoples,
Mestizo, Miskito, Pech, Sumu, Chorti, Tolpan, Chorotega, Black Carib, and all ethnic groups of Honduras!
Princes and rulers, young men and maidens, old men and children!

Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for his name alone is exalted;
his majesty is above earth and heaven.
He has raised up a horn for his people,
praise for all his saints,
for the people of Honduras who are near to him.
Praise the Lord!

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