Ebola vaccine–praise report

August 30, 2015

God is good! An answer to several Lent & Beyond prayers.

From CNN:

A newly developed vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus is “highly effective” and could help prevent its spread in the current and future outbreaks


A striking graph – visual evidence of God’s answer to prayer re: Ebola

March 23, 2015

I was just browsing a very interesting article at BBC by an epidemiologist, recounting the work of tracing Ebola contacts in Liberia.

The article contains a striking graph, showing the curve of the epidemic in Liberia – the average number of new cases per day from March 2014 to March 2015.

 

Ebola_Liberia_Graph

Remember the #praytoendEbola prayer campaign spearheaded by SIM?  SIM’s prayer campaign took place from Sept 29 – October 5.  Several other ministries also called for intensive prayer in the first two weeks of October.  Look at when the rate of new Ebola infections began to decline in Liberia!  It’s pretty striking, and very encouraging!

Of course there was much besides prayer that went into turning around the Ebola epidemic in Liberia.  And the turn around took longer in Guinea and Sierra Leone.  In addition to praising God for His grace, I’m deeply thankful to all the doctors,  nurses, public health workers, epidemiologists, researchers, and community volunteers whose sacrificial work on the ground in West Africa made an essential difference.  As we prayed, God used their love, their hands & feet, their gifts and talents to turn around this disease.

Keep praying for Ebola to be totally ended throughout West Africa… Liberia has had almost no new cases for the past three weeks.  Guinea & Sierra Leone still are reporting siginificant numbers of cases, however.  Prayer is still needed, as are gifts to various NGOs and organizations leading the continued fight to contain Ebola.  You can read the latest update from all three countries here:  Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia.

 

 


Falling Ebola incidence–thanksgiving

February 2, 2015

From the WHO: Case incidence continues to fall in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. Mali has been declared free of Ebola virus disease (EVD).
Each of the intense-transmission countries has sufficient capacity to isolate and treat patients, with more than 2 treatment beds per reported confirmed, probable and suspected case. The planned numbers of beds in each country has now been reduced in accordance with falling case incidence.
Similarly, each country has sufficient capacity to bury all people known to have died from EVD.

This article from the NYT discusses the reduction of the number of cases.

Psalm 28:7
The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song.

We thank You, Lord, for Your tender mercies in western Africa. Amen.


Ebola virus mutation–a prayer

January 31, 2015

From the BBC:

Researchers at the Institut Pasteur in France, which first identified the outbreak last March, are investigating whether it could have become more contagious. . . .

“We know the virus is changing quite a lot,” said human geneticist Dr Anavaj Sakuntabhai. . . . A virus can change itself to less deadly, but more contagious and that’s something we are afraid of” . . . . “We’ve now seen several cases that don’t have any symptoms at all, asymptomatic cases,”

Psalm 34:18 The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit.
O Lord, You are the Author of salvation. Write the words

contrite spirit

over Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Mali.

Psalm 51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, A broken and a contrite heart— These, O God, You will not despise.
O Lord, You are the Author of salvation. Write the words

contrite heart

over Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Mali.

Isaiah 57:15 For thus says the High and Lofty One Who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: “I dwell in the high and holy place, With him who has a contrite and humble spirit, To revive the spirit of the humble, And to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
O Lord, You are the Author of salvation. Write the words

contrite ones

over Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Mali.

Isaiah 66:2 For all those things My hand has made, And all those things exist,” Says the Lord. “But on this one will I look: On him who is poor and of a contrite spirit, And who trembles at My word.
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. Amen.


Ebola crisis prayer

January 24, 2015

Job 13:15a NIV
Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him.

Dear Father,
We place our hope for Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Mali in You. Have mercy, Lord. Have mercy. Amen.


Ebola–the children of West Africa

January 19, 2015

This commentary outlines the ways the Ebola crisis is impacting the children of west Africa.

The questions are from Eliphaz, one of Job’s three friends who visited him in his affliction. The response is from the psalms of the ascent, the songs pilgrims sang as they ascended to Jerusalem.

Job 4:17,15:14, Psalm 123:1-2(NLT)
Can a mortal be innocent before God?
I lift my eyes to you, O God, enthroned in heaven.
Can anyone be pure before the Creator? Can any mortal be pure?
We keep looking to the Lord our God for his mercy,
Can anyone born of a woman be just?
Just as servants keep their eyes on their master, as a slave girl watches her mistress for the slightest signal.

Our Father in heaven,
We proclaim Your majesty, Your purity, Your justice, and Your mercy over west Africa. We are fallen creatures; even our children fall short of Your glory. But You are enthroned in all majesty, all power, all wisdom, all love. We keep our eyes on You in the midst of the suffering from the Ebola epidemic, and we look for Your mercy. Amen.


Ebola prayer–sound frequencies

January 8, 2015

Genesis 1:3a AMP
And God said . . .
Our Father in heaven, You spoke creation into being. You are the Author of sound.

Joshua 6:20 AMP
So the people shouted, and the trumpets were blown. When the people heard the sound of the trumpet, they raised a great shout, and [Jericho’s] wall fell down in its place, so that the [Israelites] went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.
We thank You that You gave Jericho to the Israelites with the sound of the trumpets and the shouts.

1 Samuel 7:10 AMP
As Samuel was offering up the burnt offering, the Philistines drew near to attack Israel. But the Lord thundered with a great voice that day against the Philistines and threw them into confusion, and they were defeated before Israel.
We thank You that You delivered the Israelites from the Philistines by Your great thunder.

1 Samuel 16:23 AMP
And when the evil spirit from God was upon Saul, David took a lyre and played it; so Saul was refreshed and became well, and the evil spirit left him.
We thank You that You anointed David’s music.

1 Chronicles 15:28 AMP
Thus all Israel brought up the ark of the covenant of the Lord with shouting, sound of the cornet, trumpets, and cymbals, sounding aloud with harps and lyres.
We thank You for the gift of praise.

Matthew 3:16-17 AMP
And when Jesus was baptized, He went up at once out of the water; and behold, the heavens were opened, and he [John] saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on Him. And behold, a voice from heaven said, This is My Son, My Beloved, in Whom I delight!
We thank You for Your proclamation of the Messiah.

Revelation 5:8 AMP
And when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders [of the heavenly Sanhedrin] prostrated themselves before the Lamb. Each was holding a harp (lute or guitar), and they had golden bowls full of incense (fragrant spices and gums for burning), which are the prayers of God’s people (the saints).
We thank You for the sounds of heaven.

O Author of sound, we humbly beseech You to release sounds of healing, deliverance, and restoration over Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea.  Amen.


Ebola–bloodline prayer

January 3, 2015

The genealogy is from Genesis 5 and 1 Chronicles 1:1-4. This article from Koinonia House helped me to recognize God’s plan of redemption hidden in the names.

Adam– Man
Seth– Appointed
Enosh– Mortal
Kenan– Sorrow
Mahalalel– The Blessed God
Jared– Shall come down
Enoch– Teaching
Methuselah– His death shall bring
Lamech– The despairing
Noah– Rest, or comfort

Yes, Father, the men, women, and children of western Africa are mortal, frail, and miserable. Their bloodlines, like all of mankind, are filled with sorrow.
But Your Son Christ Jesus redeemed their bloodlines by the shedding of His Blood. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting!
We thank You for the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. We lift to You the sorrowful bloodlines of Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea and cry out for the wonder-working power in the precious Blood of the Lamb. We cry out for healing!  Amen.
1 Chronicles 16:36, Revelation 13:8


Ebola prayer–Roll on Jehovah

December 28, 2014

Psalm 37:5 Young’s Literal Translation
Roll on Jehovah thy way, And trust upon Him, and He worketh,

Jehovah God,
We thank You for the work You are doing in Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia. Amen.


A prayer for Ebola orphans

December 27, 2014

This article from Voice of America describes the plight of Ebola orphans.

Psalm 84:3-4 (NIV)
Even the sparrow has found a home,
and the swallow a nest for herself,
where she may have her young—
a place near your altar,
Lord Almighty, my King and my God.
Blessed are those who dwell in your house;
they are ever praising you.

O God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob,
You are Lord of the generations. Thank You for all the goodness that You have sown in the land, the bloodlines, and the churches in western Africa.

O Lord, we pray, draw the Ebola orphans ever nearer Your altar that they may find a home.

You are enthroned on the praises of Your people. Bless the homes that teach the little ones to love You.

O Lord, we pray, draw the Ebola orphans ever nearer Your altar that they may find a home.

Thank You for teaching us how to sow goodness and generosity and reap a harvest beyond measure. Hospitality begets hospitality. Stir the hearts of Christians to provide homes and aid to the orphans.

O Lord, we pray, draw the Ebola orphans ever nearer Your altar that they may find a home. Amen.


Ebola prayer–seeds of hope

December 26, 2014

Zechariah 8:12a (NLT)
For I am planting seeds of peace and prosperity among you.

O Lord,
We yearn for a display of Your splendor–people throughout the population of West Africa established like oaks of righteousness. In a good year, an oak tree produces between 70,000 – 150,000 acorns. O, for hundreds of thousands of seeds of righteousness, peace, healing, hope, and prosperity throughout Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea! With You, nothing is impossible. Let it be! Amen.


An Ebola prayer

December 9, 2014

Via St. Martin’s Church Walsall in the UK, a very good prayer focused on the health care workers, the charities / NGOs and the military personnel involved in battling the Ebola outbreak:

Compassionate and Loving Lord, we want to give thanks and praise for all the amazing doctors, nurses and volunteers who are helping to bring the Ebola crises in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone [and Mali] under control. These are the unsung heroes and heroines who are working tirelessly, in enormously difficult circumstances, to help the citizens of these countries. Thank you for our soldiers who are now helping in Sierra Leone and for the charities, especially Medicine San Frontiers and Red Cross, who have been there since the outbreak. We pray for all the families who have experienced the loss of loved ones and especially for the children who have been orphaned. We pray that they will get the help and support they need to rebuild their lives. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

From here


Prayer points for fight against Ebola in Sierra Leone – via Christian Aid

December 4, 2014

Christian Aid (UK) is focusing its Ebola response on Sierra Leone, and they have a page of good, specific prayer points and prayers:

Prayer points for the Ebola outbreak

  • Pray that the millions being targeted with potentially life-saving advice would be receptive and that it would prevent them contracting Ebola.
  • Pray for the medical teams across the nine districts receiving disposable gloves, powdered and liquid chlorine for disinfection. Pray that they might be prevented from contracting Ebola.
  • Pray for the 900 community health volunteers conducting door-to-door awareness raising and training 9,000 more volunteers. Pray that through their work others would be prevented from contracting Ebola.
  • Pray that the widespread fear and distrust about the disease and its causes would be dispersed and that through reassurance and support many would be prevented from contracting Ebola.
  • Pray for Christian Aid partners in Sierra Leone: the Methodist Church of Sierra Leone (MCSL), Network of people living with HIV, the SEND foundation, Rehabilitation and Development Agency (RADA) and Network Movement for Justice and Development (NMJD). Give thanks for their witness. Pray for courage and hope for them as they reach out to communities in 10 of the country’s 14 districts, pray that through their work many would be prevented from contracting Ebola.
  • Pray for all those putting themselves at risk to treat patients. Pray for those who are the patients, for their recovery and cure or for a dignified and peaceful passing for those who do succumb to this disease.
  • Pray that the international community would make resources rapidly available to respond to the challenge of Ebola.

Prayers

A prayer for the survivors

John 1. 1-14

Living word, who became flesh
through whom all have life,
thank you for your light
in the darkness of the Ebola Crisis.

Thank you for those who have overcome,
for those who have survived.
We pray for them as they return
to live among their families and communities.

We pray for the enlightenment needed
so that stigma around Ebola will not spread,
so that livelihoods and homes would not be destroyed,
so that those who survive can be a light of comfort and hope
among those who are afraid.

Thank you for your incarnation, living word,
full of the grace and truth that blesses all flesh.

Amen.

A prayer for the health workers

Matthew 25: 34-46
‘I was sick and you took care of me.’

Lord,
We pray for those who are taking care of you
in the body of humanity that has Ebola.

We thank you for those who have sacrificed
their own comfort and security to tend to the needs of others.

We are mindful of those medical workers who have lost their lives,
and pray that their loved ones will find comfort in your words:

‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom…
…for I was sick and you took care of me.’

Amen.

 

There are still more prayers at the full page.

 


Ebola still increasing in Sierra Leone – pray!

December 4, 2014

The Ebola situation continues to get worse in Sierra Leone, which is averaging nearly 100 new cases per day throughout the country according to yesterday’s WHO report.

As our latest graph below, tracking cumulative cases in West Africa shows, total cases in Sierra Leone are likely to soon surpass the cases in Liberia, where thankfully there has been some slowing in the numbers of new cases in the past 6 weeks.

Ebola data 3 Dec 2014

The graph shows that there can be no let up in the sense of urgency about Ebola in West Africa and that much perseverance in prayer is still needed!

In the last month there have been:

  • 433 new cases of Ebola in Guinea  (avg. 14 cases per day)
  • 1110 new cases of Ebola in Liberia (avg. 40 cases per day)
  • 2553 new cases of Ebola in Sierra Leone (avg. 93 cases per day)

And yet now that there are currently no Ebola cases in the U.S. or Spain, the crisis risks getting bumped out of the headlines once again.

I found the following prayer at the Catholic Relief Services website. I love the idea of contagious compassion!  May the Lord cause our hearts to respond to this crisis with prayer, with giving and with acts of love and service n whatever form we can offer.

Jesus, healer of the sick,

Your heart was filled with compassion for the sick and suffering
and you traveled to all the towns and villages, curing every disease and illness.1

We ask that all of those infected with the Ebola virus may feel the healing power of Jesus:
Comfort for all who mourn the loss of loved ones
Protection for all those who are vulnerable
Support for all health workers who risk their own lives to care for others.

Let your compassion be more contagious than any disease or malady
so that we may generously respond as you would.

Amen.

You’ll find all our Ebola Crisis prayers using this tag.

***

I urge you all to not only PRAY, but to GIVE and ACT as well.  The New York Times published a good list of charities on the frontlines of the battle against Ebola.  From personal experience, I have a lot of confidence in the work of Doctors Without Borders (aka MSF) and Samaritans Purse.

I may try to do some research regarding which charities are most active in Sierra Leone, so as to be able to focus specifically on alleviating the crisis in that country.  If any readers have information, please let me know.


Ebola

December 4, 2014

Psalm 123:1-2 (NLT)

I lift my eyes to you, O God, enthroned in heaven.  We keep looking to the Lord our God for his mercy, just as servants keep their eyes on their master, as a slave girl watches her mistress for the slightest signal.

O Lord God,

You are enthroned in majesty and glory in heaven.  The heavens are yours; Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Mali are yours; the world and all that is in it, you have founded them.  You have a mighty arm; strong is your hand, high your right hand.  Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; steadfast love and faithfulness go before you.

We lift our eyes to You, O God, for Your mercy in the Ebola virus epidemic.  Amen.

Psalm 89:11-14


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