May 11 – Day of Prayer for Syria

Day of Prayer for Syria – May 11, 2013
Operation Mobilization   |


Most churches in Syria will unite in prayer next weekend in many places around the war-torn nation. This will be an extraordinary show of Christian unity in Syria, where the on-going civil war has claimed over 70,000 lives. Syrian Christians are asking their brothers and sisters around the world to pray and fast with them on the Day of Prayer for Syria on Saturday May 11. As Christians in Syria continue to suffer from the devastating effects of the two-year-old civil war including killings, kidnappings, homelessness, lack of food and shelter and closing of schools; they are also seeing that God’s hand is at work as all denominations are joining in passionate prayer.

“The Christian Church is experiencing a deep humanitarian crisis that is leading to the rapid loss of hope. In the face of violence and persecution, we are striving to keep our eyes on the Lord and seek His face for our country. Even in pain, suffering and death, God is using the Church to accomplish His plan.”

On Saturday, May 11, Christians from different denominations such as Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant/Evangelical are joining together in prayer and fasting to plead before the Lord for His mercy on Syria and an end to the violence. Due to the dangers of traveling in combat zones, Christians will be limited to local meetings planned all across Syria during this day. These groups will be meeting in homes, arenas and churches. Christians across Syria have asked that you join them in prayer on May 11. “Thank you for standing in the gap on behalf of the Syrian people and reflecting the love of Christ in your acts of worship.”

In Damascus, some of the churches will meet in an arena, but there will be prayer in several suburbs of the city. The entire Christian community in Aleppo and the surrounding area is gathering to pray. “This is a huge undertaking as a day of prayer with almost all denominations participating has never happened in Syria before,” said a Syrian church leader.  This is a fight for a nation that was one of the first nations in the world to be impacted by the message of the Gospel of Christ. They need us, the Global Christian Community to stand with them before God, to love and support them. Let us not let them stand alone.

The Church in Syria is asking us to pray for:

  • The release of two Orthodox bishops, Yohanna Ibrahim and Boulos Yazigi,who were kidnapped April 23 in Aleppo, and many other Christians who are missing.
  • Counseling for children who have been traumatized by the ongoing violence in Syria and the return of peace to this troubled nation.
  • For the almost one-third of the Syrian population who are either refugees outside the country or homeless inside Syria.

Please find a list of prayer requests bellow, directly from the Christians living in Syria. Thank you for standing in the gap on behalf of the Syrian people!

  • There are churches in Syria that have chosen to remain faithful to their responsibilities to reach out, despite the war. Pray for these churches.
  • Pray also for the churches involved in relief work to needy families and refugees: prices for groceries and other necessities rose to an ‘unbelievable level’, a pastor wrote.
  • There are limited quantities of food and other materials in Syria. Medication, for example, is in short supply. Pray for the Syrians that lack the medicine they need for their health. A contact reported, “A man in Aleppo saw his wife die, because he couldn’t find the medicine she needed.”
  • Pray for women and children who always bear the brunt of war. Pray for mercy on Syrian refugees and internally displaced people as they faced a cold winter without any means of heating their homes as a result of the civil war, if having a home at all. They will be glad to anticipate the warmer summer days ahead.
  • Pray that the Word of God will continue to be delivered. Transportation is really difficult so pray for safety as Christian materials are being sent throughout the country. Please pray for the people that received a Bible; may the Word of God bring comfort and change their lives.
  • In this time of despair contacts in Syria notice that people search for the foundation in their lives; some Christians rediscover Jesus as the rock, but also Muslims discover the hope in the Gospel of Jesus and experience love from the Syrian churches. Pray for all the people who are receiving Christ during the crises in Syria. One example is sister A. in Aleppo. We cannot share her real name, but pray that the Lord will confirm His love for her.
  • Pray that Syrian church leaders will find their comfort in the Lord and will also find the courage to stay in Syria to teach and take care of their flocks. May the Holy Spirit encourage and keep them and position strong Christians alongside them.

anxiety & comfort

Psalm 94:19


ESV – When the cares of my heart are many,
your consolations cheer my soul.

NIV – When anxiety was great within me,
your consolation brought me joy.

The Message – When I was upset and beside myself,
you calmed me down and cheered me up.

NASB – When my anxious thoughts multiply within me,
Your consolations delight my soul.

The Voice – When anxiety overtakes me and worries are many,
Your comfort lightens my soul.

Five Minute Friday: Jump

Today I am joining Lisa-Jo for Five Minute Friday. If you’re new here (welcome!) the rules are simple: Write, don’t edit, link your post to her page, and then share the encouragement like wildfire.

The prompt this week is: Jump




“Go ahead and jump” – an old Van Halen song from the past. I have no idea what the rest of the lyrics of the song are – or what the intent is. However, I have used that phrase to encourage myself to move ahead with something – particularly when it scary or I’m hesitant.

Jumping in with both feet tends to mean a little shock – like going in the pool when you know it’s going to be cold. It also means giving yourself fully.



There is an old joke about a hen and a pig giving themselves for the farmer’s breakfast. The hen was involved, the pig was fully committed. That’s what I want to be – fully committed, not just involved – when it comes to my faith and sharing and reflecting the love of Jesus. I want to reflect Him, not give a distorted image.

This means jumping – being fully committed; fully engaged.

playing by the ‘rules’

Grace1Legalism is the antithesis of grace. Legalism says that the law is still king and in essence, Jesus’ blood has not redeemed anything. Legalism says that grace is for the weak because “truth” is more important than anything else. Legalism takes “truth” and makes it into an idol. It’s important that our hearts and our churches and our groups of friends are free from legalism. It hampers our ability to grow in a healthy understanding of who God really is and how grand His love and grace is.

How to pray for your single friend

from Julie Sanders:

Sometimes we think we know how to pray for each other, but we don’t. Our family gathered for dinner one night, and Jeff began to pray. In his prayer, he prayed for the Lord to help me (Julie) have strength and feel better. HELLO?

When we lifted our heads, I had to try really hard not to blurt out something snarky. Apparently, I must’ve looked sick that night?!? Something made him think I felt bad physically (The dark circles? The yawning?), but that wasn’t the case at all. I needed to make my real needs a little more known, and he needed to ask before he put a “quarantine” sign around my neck and warmed up the chicken soup. While our prayerful intentions are good, our petitions may be misdirected and ineffective.

One of the best ways to pray with understanding is to ASK: How can I pray for you? In this case: “How can married women pray for single friends?”

I asked my single girlfriends that very question. After taking some time to talk about Single Things in February, I think it’s very appropriate to learn how to love our single friends through prayer. One of my single mom friends reminded me that singles are unmarried as parents for a variety of reasons like death of a spouse and divorce, which really makes a difference in how they long to be prayed for. You should ask the single friend who has come to your mind, but let me get you started with what my friends shared with me. These are THEIR thoughts.


How to Pray for Your Single Friend
Pray for her the same as you would any other women.
Pray that the Holy Spirit would provide contentment for being single.
Pray for protection; singleness makes women feel vulnerable.
Pray that no life stage would take the place of finding true satisfaction in God.
Pray that she would use her talents, abilities, and opportunities to serve God.
Pray that she seeks God’s best before walking down the aisle.
Pray that she won’t waste her life waiting on what’s next.
Pray for friendships to fill some of her lonely gaps.
Pray for her to have financial wisdom.
Pray that she will use this single time wisely.
Pray for her to remain pure in body and in mind.
Pray for her to have patience and contentment.
Pray that she will find her needs met and complete satisfaction in Christ.
Pray for God to provide her a mate IF she seeks that, but support her no matter what.
Pray that she will truly SEE God caring for her.
Pray that if God wills for her to marry, she will wait patiently for the right man.
Pray for friends to be iron sharpening iron for her.
Pray for her, but also WITH her.
Pray for her to be loved and accepted in her church.
Pray for HER to work on being this kind of friend to others.


Father’s Love Letter


My Child,


You may not know me,
but I know everything about you.
Psalm 139:1

I know when you sit down and when you rise up.
Psalm 139:2

I am familiar with all your ways.
Psalm 139:3

Even the very hairs on your head are numbered.
Matthew 10:29-31

For you were made in my image.
Genesis 1:27

In me you live and move and have your being.
Acts 17:28

For you are my offspring.
Acts 17:28

I knew you even before you were conceived.
Jeremiah 1:4-5

I chose you when I planned creation.
Ephesians 1:11-12

You were not a mistake,
for all your days are written in my book.
Psalm 139:15-16

I determined the exact time of your birth
and where you would live.
Acts 17:26

You are fearfully and wonderfully made.
Psalm 139:14

I knit you together in your mother’s womb.
Psalm 139:13

And brought you forth on the day you were born.
Psalm 71:6

I have been misrepresented
by those who don’t know me.
John 8:41-44

I am not distant and angry,
but am the complete expression of love.
1 John 4:16

And it is my desire to lavish my love on you.
1 John 3:1

Simply because you are my child
and I am your Father.
1 John 3:1

I offer you more than your earthly father ever could.
Matthew 7:11

For I am the perfect father.
Matthew 5:48

Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand.
James 1:17

For I am your provider and I meet all your needs.
Matthew 6:31-33

My plan for your future has always been filled with hope.
Jeremiah 29:11

Because I love you with an everlasting love.
Jeremiah 31:3

My thoughts toward you are countless
as the sand on the seashore.
Psalms 139:17-18

And I rejoice over you with singing.
Zephaniah 3:17

I will never stop doing good to you.
Jeremiah 32:40

For you are my treasured possession.
Exodus 19:5

I desire to establish you
with all my heart and all my soul.
Jeremiah 32:41

And I want to show you great and marvelous things.
Jeremiah 33:3

If you seek me with all your heart,
you will find me.
Deuteronomy 4:29

Delight in me and I will give you
the desires of your heart.
Psalm 37:4

For it is I who gave you those desires.
Philippians 2:13

I am able to do more for you
than you could possibly imagine.
Ephesians 3:20

For I am your greatest encourager.
2 Thessalonians 2:16-17

I am also the Father who comforts you
in all your troubles.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4

When you are brokenhearted,
I am close to you.
Psalm 34:18

As a shepherd carries a lamb,
I have carried you close to my heart.
Isaiah 40:11

One day I will wipe away
every tear from your eyes.
Revelation 21:3-4

And I’ll take away all the pain
you have suffered on this earth.
Revelation 21:3-4

I am your Father, and I love you
even as I love my son, Jesus.
John 17:23

For in Jesus, my love for you is revealed.
John 17:26

He is the exact representation of my being.
Hebrews 1:3

He came to demonstrate that I am for you,
not against you.
Romans 8:31

And to tell you that I am not counting your sins.
2 Corinthians 5:18-19

Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled.
2 Corinthians 5:18-19

His death was the ultimate expression
of my love for you.
1 John 4:10

I gave up everything I loved
that I might gain your love.
Romans 8:31-32

If you receive the gift of my son Jesus,
you receive me.
1 John 2:23

And nothing will ever separate you
from my love again.
Romans 8:38-39

Come home and I’ll throw the biggest party
heaven has ever seen.
Luke 15:7

I have always been Father,
and will always be Father.
Ephesians 3:14-15

My question is…
Will you be my child?
John 1:12-13

I am waiting for you.
Luke 15:11-32


Love, Your Dad
Almighty God



Father’s Love Letter used by permission Father Heart Communications
© 1999-2011

Alabama Road Trips?


How many interesting places are close to home? Let’s find out! Starting with the Alabama Travel website and adding some of my own to the list. Some of these I can check off my list…

How many Alabama Road Trips have you done?



Most refugees arriving in China, of which Kirkpatrick said “75 percent are women”, usually end up in the hands of “brokers”. Brokers are a “necessary evil”, claims Kim, who’s missionary on the Chinese border often deals with brokers to pay for refugees. Once in Kim’s care, the refugees are provided information on how to utilize the “Underground Railroad” to successfully navigate to South Korea.

The “Underground Railroad” is similar to the one used in America during the mid-19th century to assist slaves with a safe passage to the North, says Kirkpatrick. Kim utilized this service when he was 13 years old and an orphan in North Korea. The route varies and refugees can pass through any combination of China, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam. Countries such as Laos and Cambodia are more accommodating and will contact the South Korean Consulate and inform them of the refugees. In China however, refugees are mostly detained and sent back to North Korea. Although most refugees desire to end up in South Korea, Kim says he attempts to persuade them to return to North Korea and become “freedom fighters”.

One large ‘market’ for North Korean women is to become a wife for Chinese men. Some women who see no hope in North Korea decide that a life with a Chinese man is better than their current existence. And the market demand for North Korean women is high, due to China’s one child policy. In some areas, “men outnumber women by a ratio of 14:1,” states Kirkpatrick. Others are sold directly into prostitution. Trafficking grew mostly during the late 1990’s, due to North Koreans need for food. “The Chinese people saw a chance to make money,” says Kim, and took advantage of this. Kim explained that brokers would also go to North Korea, seek out women and then say, “come to China for a better life.”

Source: NK News

Five Minute Friday: Beloved


“Dearly Beloved” – the opening words of ministers through the years at the beginning of weddings. But what does that mean? And who are the ‘dearly beloved’? The words carry such a stilted, old feel. Modern language would probably say friends and family – those we love…

The formal language of ‘dearly beloved’ draws the attention of young women who are anxious for marriage and romance and all that weddings seem to be. It might also cause panic attacks and anxiety. 🙂

The point is that a gathering of loved ones is happening for some purpose. This might also happen at funerals, but the wording is not associated as strongly as that of weddings

So what does beloved mean? Dearly loved… It carries weight and associations and implied feelings that are stronger than whims and passing thoughts. Jesus uses the team in the New Testament for his disciples, particularly John.

Who is your beloved?


Five Minute Friday – Bare


What is ‘bare’? The cupboard, a body, a soul? To ‘bare’ it all, is to be completely honest. It’s the essence of transparency. It’s raw and vulnerable and honest and sometimes painful and risky.

The homonym game is also interesting with ‘bear’ and ‘bare’. Bear – to carry like a burden or a weapon; an animal that can be frightening and dangerous.

So ‘grin and bear it’ could also be ‘grin and bare it’ – be transparent; be real; be vulnerable – but choose wisely.