Praying for Ukraine

Today Ukraine is on my heart. The people there have taken up a unity of fighting together for freedom. Is it religious  freedom? A study done in 2018 revealed that 71.7% of the population of Ukraine declared themselves as believers. That makes them our brothers and sisters. They know that those freedoms will be taken away under a dictatorship, and they are standing in the gap, praying and fighting for the freedom that is costly, but what is freedom that has no cost?  The Bible tells us: “Pray at all times in the Spirit with every prayer and request, and stay alert in this with all perseverance and intercession for all the saints. Pray also for me, that the message may be given to me when I open my mouth to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel. For this I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I might be bold enough in Him to speak as I should.”  Ephesians 6:18-20  So I submit to all who read this today, not just to pray with empty prayers, so we can feel good about lifting up our brothers and sisters in harm’s way, but to earnestly pray in the Spirit.  I wonder how often we pray in the Spirit? It’s the heart emptied out of self, and self-concerns; it’s the heart that is broken before God in surrender, to place with all we have and are to God for His glory and purpose. It’s a bleeding for another, whom we haven’t even met, yet feel the kinship of the Father. Is the desire to do something, even though we don’t know what to do. It’s prayer!  The type of prayer Jesus prayed to the Father in the garden before He was arrested. It’s the prayer that is like that of a mother for her child;  Often I suspect that we don’t pray that way, but rather use prayer as a duty instead of a petition to our Lord. How many times have you said you would pray for another, and said, It’s the least I can do.  When we say that we are indeed putting prayer at the lowest common denominator and making it voiceless, and powerless. Prayer is the most we can do. Psalms cries out: “The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, and delivers them from all their troubles.” Ps. 34:17  Do we believe in prayer enough to petition God to give power and strength and endurance and perseverance to the Ukrainians? Do we believe He will?  We are to ask for anything, and believe that God’s will would be done, knowing that God will conquer all strongholds and set the prisoner free. For instance, do you believe that: “everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? One the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.”  1 John 5:4-5  Now is the time, my friends, to take a good look at our prayers, for they are the power of God, for those who suffer will realize that power because they will have prayed in the Spirit.  James tells us: “Is anyone among you suffering? He should pray. Is anyone cheerful? He should sing praises. Is anyone among you sick? He should call for the elders of the church, and they should pray over him after anointing him with olive oil in the name of the lord. The prayer of faith will save the sick person, and the Lord will restore him to health; if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The urgent request of a righteous person is very powerful in its effect.” James 5: 13-16   The prayer of a righteous person is very powerful. So why aren’t our prayers powerful?  Because we have made them too watered down.  We pray but do we believe?  Join me today in getting on our knees and praying for God to move. In Ukraine, in the U.S. and in the lives of all our brothers and sisters. That is the most we can do! Pastor Andy

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