Saturday, July 20, 2013

The Peacemakers

Got this from Bible Gateway and wanted to share. Great thoughts.


Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. Matthew 5:9

With the possession of a meek spirit, we are equipped to step into the midst of conflict and be ambassadors “waging peace” that passes all understanding. The richness of the New Testament word “peace” describes a condition of perfect and complete positive well-being. It also describes right relationships—intimate fellowship and goodwill between human beings. Peace comes not from avoiding issues but from facing them, making peace even when the way is through trouble.

Blessed are those peacemakers who produce right relationships in every sphere of life, for they are doing a God-like work.

Such actions may involve laying down one’s life, like Jesus did, in order to reconcile men with God and break down barriers among men (Galatians 3:26-29). Are we willing to pay the price so that others might find peace with God? Are we willing to insist that all should hear the Gospel and believe? In some conflict areas of the world, Christians call this “waging peace.”

Our brothers and sisters in Israel and the West Bank—where “peace” is sought but very evasive—remind us that Jesus’ high moral teaching is that we should not resist evil with evil (Matthew 5:39). Jesus is calling His followers not to respond in kind to the acts of injustice and dehumanization directed against them, but rather to respond with transforming initiatives. This unique perspective that He teaches contrasts with the “fight or flight” responses so deeply conditioned in human beings.

Dr. Salim Munayer is a wonderful example of such a peacemaker. The organization he founded takes groups of Christian Palestinians and Israelis on trips to the desert where they must work together in a situation that breaks down barriers and promotes trust relationships. Brother Andrew comments that this ministry doesn’t “just talk about the problem between Palestinians and Jews. It brings the two sides together and provides the means for them to reconcile.”

“Waging peace” involves: promoting love not hate; fostering unity among brethren; being a witness of a higher kingdom; and following the non-violence example of Jesus.

RESPONSE: Today I will be proactive and “wage peace” in my sphere of influence.

PRAYER: Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace. May I counter hatred with love and injury with forgiveness today.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Prayer Requests

Please join me in praying for the below requests.

"Prayer is the pulse of life; by it the doctor can tell what is the condition of the heart. The sin of prayerlessness is a proof for the ordinary Christian or minister that the life of God in the soul is in deadly sickness and weakness." - Andrew Murray

"praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints" - Ephesians 6:18

VOM-USA Prayer Update for July 12, 2013 On Thu. Jul 11 2013 at 02:53 PM Moderator wrote: Uganda--Tortured Girl Returns to School Source: VOM Sources Psalm 138:2

Susan Ithungu, a teenager who was tortured by her father because of her Christian faith, began a new school term this past month with VOM's help. Susan suffered permanent damage to her legs as a result of being kept in a tiny room for three months by her father. After multiple surgeries and a year in the hospital, she is now able to walk with crutches. A VOM contact recently accompanied Susan as she returned to school for a new term. Though she's 15, Susan will be studying at the fourth-grade level; she is far behind because of the torture and subsequent medical treatment. An older Christian woman and a pastor are taking care of Susan. Despite the challenges she faces, Susan moved her things into the school with a broad smile. "Thank you for your love, care, and help for me," she wrote in a letter to her supporters. "I am happy to have friends that God has sent to help me." Pray for Susan's success in school, for her health and that her faith will remain strong.[/quote]

Egypt--Christians Hopeful After Change in Country's Leadership Source: VOM Sources

Proverbs 15:16 Egyptian Christians are elated that President Mohammed Morsi, who was backed by the Muslim Brotherhood, was forced out on July 3, 2013, according to our contacts in Egypt. Millions of Egyptians, both Christian and Muslim, took to the streets from June 30 to July 3, urging President Morsi to step down. "At 8:30 p.m., while we were waiting in the streets shouting against Dr. Morsi, the army leaders made the decision that Dr. Morsi was not the president anymore," our contact wrote. "We were crying and laughing, greeting each other in the street, kissing and hugging each other." Before the protests, several Christians received letters warning them not to join the protests. Christians hope the new leadership will stop the outpouring of violence that has been directed toward them by radical Muslims in the past year. Please continue to pray for Egypt.[/quote]

Iran--Pastor Released Under Gag Ordered Sources: VOM Sources, Mohabat News 3 John 1:4

Pastor Robert Asseriyan, a leader of the Central Assemblies of God (AOG) church in Tehran, was released from prison on July 2 after spending 43 days in jail. It appears that Pastor Asseriyan has been released on bail, but authorities have warned him and his family not to discuss his release or his upcoming trial. Their silence is a condition of his release. Pastor Asseriyan was arrested on May 21 during a prayer meeting at the church. Before arresting Pastor Asseriyan, authorities raided his home, where they confiscated a computer and several books. They closed the church the day after his arrest. Continue to pray for Pastor Asseriyan and the AOG church as they struggle to remain one of the few churches in Iran providing Farsi-language services.[/quote]

Jordan--VOM Project Pray for an indigenous evangelism and discipleship network supported by VOM. The workers target unreached areas of Jordan where there have been several attacks on Christians in recent years, including killings.[/quote]

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Eye Cycle Fund Raiser

I will be there with bells on and a rose in my teeth, will you join me?

Join Eyecycle Colorado for an exciting evening of wine tasting, silent auction, music, food and fun at the Briarwood Inn on Thursday evening, August 1st from 5:00-9:00.

Auction tables will open at 6:00-7:30. In the meantime enjoy the famous Briarwood Inn Spanish wines, Cheese and Tapas, under the stars in the Colorado foothills. The live music will entertain you as you sip wine or enjoy the cash bar, and bid on Primal Wear kits, Peyton Manning signed jersey, VIP tickets to the USA Pro Challenge, jewelry, wine and outdoor gear etc. Proceeds directly support Eyecycle Colorado which is the only cycling group for our visually impaired and blind cycling community. We match sighted captains with blind stokers on tandems to enjoy the cycling experience.

Come and join the fun!

buy tickets for $40 Here.

The Word of Life

I found the below from Standing Strong Through the Storm at Bible Gateway to be most moving, so thought I'd share.

THE WORD OF GOD IS LIFE “The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.” Isaiah 40:8

Amir, a young Algerian man, was temporarily staying in an apartment of a friend while recovering from depression. His friend had moved out leaving only a few items behind, but unbeknownst to him, he had left behind his most prized possession, God’s Word!

“While I was cleaning the apartment, I found a New Testament,” Amir says. “This New Testament changed my life. I found the Lord Jesus Christ by reading the book.” In the following months leading into years, he kept reading the Bible. Slowly, his depression lifted and the recovery and healing began to transform his life.

Amir continues, “One day I was watching Christian satellite TV and I saw the phone number of another Christian in Algeria. I immediately contacted that person and soon afterwards we met, which was great. This brother in Christ brought me into contact with a small group of believers, which I am attending regularly now. Praise to God for His healing and mercy. And thanks to the one who forgot his New Testament in the apartment.”

Meanwhile, Brother Gideon is in prison in Eritrea with a group of other believers because of their faith. He says, “The government representatives came up with a new idea to ask us to stop our faith and sign an agreement that we will not read the Bible. We will not pray and not have a meeting of more than two people. If we comply with that, we will sign and they will release us from the prison. But I told them I will not. Because of the Holy Spirit’s assurance in me I was ready to face anything…I said ‘No, Christ is my life. As Paul said in the book of Ephesians that for me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.’

“They beat every part of my body…until I almost died. I was thinking of Jesus. What an honor for me to share his affiliation. I remember I said to myself inside, ‘Lord, please forgive them. They don’t know what they are doing to me, but I give you my soul to rest in your hand.’

“They took us to the prison again. After three months we had a Bible smuggled in without their knowledge. We tore the pages out of different Bible books and we distributed those to different cells.

“We chose four believers to take responsibility to do distribution of the parts of the Bible. I was one of those four chosen believers and it was my responsibility to coordinate all these things. Because there is no paper in the prison cells, I was using toilet paper to write verses of the Bible and send them to others. When the government agents searched our cell, they found all those verses I sent to the sisters. They asked ‘Who sent those papers, those verses?’ When they found it was me, they put me under severe torture for months. There was no part of my body without pain.

“One of the persecutors asked me a question. ‘Why you are paying so big a price? Why don’t you renounce your faith and live a peaceful life?’ I replied, ‘To me, the Word of God is life!”

RESPONSE: Today I will honor and prize God’s Word and build my life upon its everlasting promises.

PRAYER: Pray for those in prisons around the world who pay a huge price for loving God’s Word.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Prayer Requests

Sharing the below prayer requests from VOM. Please join me in prayer.

weekly prayer updates

"Prayer is the pulse of life; by it the doctor can tell what is the condition of the heart. The sin of prayerlessness is a proof for the ordinary Christian or minister that the life of God in the soul is in deadly sickness and weakness." - Andrew Murray

"praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints" - Ephesians 6:18

VOM-USA Prayer Update for July 5, 2013 On Wed. Jul 03 2013 at 01:51 PM Moderator wrote: Laos--Elderly Couple Evicted from Home Source: VOM Sources

Philemon 4:19

Two Christian converts have been evicted from their home for seeking prayers for physical healing, a VOM worker reports. On Jan. 10, 2013, Mr. Sakien and his wife, Dong, went to a church in Intee village, Attapeu province, looking for physical healing. Their son and daughter-in-law had told them that they had experienced healing from prayer. Shortly after seeking healing at the church, the couple embraced the Christian faith. Then, on Jan. 23, the village chief issued an eviction order and stated that the couple would be denied residency in the village because of their conversion to Christianity. Sakien and Dong were told to "find a different place where Christians can live." Sakien is very ill, and the couple is currently taking shelter in an unfinished church building in Intee village.[/quote]

Honduras--Widespread Violence Affects Pastors Sources: Fuerza Latina Cristiana, VOM Sources

1 Corinthians 15:53-55

Eight pastors have been murdered in Honduras in 2013 alone. In the most recent attack, on Wednesday, June 19, Pastor Eduardo Mejia was stabbed to death. Pastor Mejia led a church called "God Is Love." The other seven pastors killed over the first half of this year have all died from gunshot wounds. An estimated 600,000 illegal weapons circulate in Honduras, and most are owned by criminals. Honduras has the highest murder rate in the world, at about 85 per every 100,000 people, according to data released by human rights organizations. None of the cases involving the murdered pastors has been solved.[/quote]

Syria--Christians Hopeful amid Civil War Source: VOM Sources

Acts 2:21

Christians in Syria remain hopeful despite increasingly difficult circumstances, a VOM contact reports. Syrians still face continual threats from snipers and mortars; from June 8 to June 10, dozens of mortars fell around the building where our VOM contact lives. He said many people are begging, searching in the rubbish and looking for a place to stay and that the value of the Syrian pound continues to drop. But he said Christians still have hope. Our contact's church still holds Bible studies, youth meetings, prayer meetings, medical clinics and church services on Sunday. The church, which VOM helps to support, also distributes packages of food, such as rice, pasta and lentils, as well as hygiene products, such as toothpaste and soap. Please pray that the church will be a house of prayer and a center for peace amid the chaos and that many more Syrians will come to Christ. Also pray for stability in the region.[/quote]

Cuba--VOM Project

Pray for the recipients of 2 million tracts and 20,000 Bibles that will be purchased and distributed in Cuba.