Pray for our Land
Our country is in the midst of a severe crisis as bushfires continue to ravage our land. We have witnessed the horrors of seeing whole communities devastated, with properties being destroyed, human lives lost and at risk, and an enormous number of our native wildlife being killed. It is utterly tragic to watch, and as a church community we cannot sit in silence.
Can I urge each one of us to do 3 things:
1. Pray: We believe in a God who is powerful and able to do more than we ask or imagine. He invites us to cry out to Him and plead with Him. We can and must do that. If you are looking for a prayer to pray or share, here’s the Diocesan prayer sent by our Archbishop last week.
A prayer for Australia in drought and fire.
Our heavenly Father, creator of all things and especially the creator of this land and its original peoples, we call out to you in these desperate times as fires have swept across several parts of our country.
Our hearts cry out to you for those who have lost loved ones, and those who have lost properties in the wake of these ravaging fires
Father we pray, in your mercy, restrain the forces of nature from creating catastrophic damage; in your mercy protect human life.
Guard those volunteers, rural fire service personnel and emergency services who selflessly step into the breach to fight these fires. Guide police and authorities who help evacuate and shelter those who are displaced. Bring comfort and healing to all who suffer loss.
Remembering your promises of old that seedtime and harvest will never cease, we pray that you would open the heavens to send refreshing rain upon our parched land.
In your mercy, we pray for drenching rain.
We pray that despite the forecasts, in your miraculous power you would bring forth rain to quench these fires and to bring life back into the earth, so that crops may grow and farmers may bring forth the harvest of the land again.
We bring these requests before your throne, in the name of your Son, who died and rose again for our deliverance,
2. Give: As Christians we are exhorted to be generous to those in need – and the need is great at the moment. There are real physical needs – of food, water, clothing, shelter. There are real emotional needs – as people deal with loss. And there are real spiritual needs – as people grapple with ‘where is God in this?’. If you are looking to provide financial help, can I recommend The Archbishop of Sydney Bushfire Appeal, which is through www.anglicanaid.org.au or phone 9284 1411.
3. Search the Scriptures: At these times of crisis, it’s so important to keep reading the Word of God and reminding ourselves and others of the God we believe in. If you are looking for Scriptures to go to, I’d recommend Psalm 46 or Psalm 27. Maybe read these Scriptures with people who are asking questions or struggling at this time.
On the subject of Scripture, in our sermons last week we looked at ‘Enjoying God through His Word’. Psalm 119 reminds us that the Word of God is ‘Sin Stopping, Guidance Giving, Comfort Channelling, Soul Satisfying and Praise Producing’.
So as we start this New Year, here are a few resources to help you get into God’s Word:
Bible In One Year - This is what Rach & I are doing this year
Explore Bible reading notes – either the App or online
My Rock & My Refuge – by Tim Keller. Daily notes on the Psalms
Bible Delight – by Christopher Ash. Looking at Psalm 119
My prayer is that in 2020 we really would ‘Enjoy God’, especially as we spend time in His Word.
With love in Christ