Welcome to the Lent journey podcast. My name is Sandra, and we are so glad to have you walking with us for 40 days in prayer and fasting, as we prepare our hearts for Easter.
During the weekdays, we are focused on personal renewal. On the weekends we are interceding for a movement of God among the nations of Eurasia, and for His renewal in our church.
Let’s start with today’s scripture reading, from
Scripture: Matthew 5:43-48 Living Bible (TLB)
During our Lenten journey, each weekend we will pray for a different field of the Eurasia Church of the Nazarene. A field is a cluster of several countries where we have churches, and there are seven fields within the Eurasia Region. You can find out more about our fields and regions at www.eurasiaregion.org.
The CIS Field is made up of nations from the former Soviet Union across Eastern Europe. There are Nazarenes present in Ukraine, Russia, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Latvia, Georgia, and one additional country that you know.
Today, we will pray for the people of these nations.
- Nazarenes who live there say that many people think of themselves as Christian, but in reality they are nominal Christians. This means they view religion as a cultural tradition, but they may not have a personal, saving relationship with Jesus Christ that is daily transforming their lives, relationships and communities.
- Some areas have a high percentage of people who follow other religions, or a tribal faith.
- During the last ten years, some new laws in these countries are placing restrictions on churches and missionaries.
- Many people are so busy earning money for their families that they don’t have the interest or energy to give much thought to their spiritual need.
- People suffer under economic deprivation, and rates of alcohol and drug addiction are very high, with relatively lacking services to help people achieve victory over their addictions. Pervasive corruption can steal hope for opportunities to achieve prosperity, driving people to participate in corruption to survive. Human trafficking destroys families and lives.
- Some regions are gripped with ongoing violent conflict, or have experienced conflict that has created refugees in the recent past.
- Let us pray that God would move across the peoples of the Commonwealth of Independent States to transform these peoples, communities and whole nations.
Dear almighty and loving Father,
Thank You for your deep and neverending love for the people of Ukraine, Russia, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Latvia, Georgia, and one country that we do not name, but that You know intimately. Thank You that Your Holy Spirit is moving back and forth across these nations, whispering Your love to the people. Please open their ears to hear You.
While all of us who are participating in today’s Lent prayer time are scattered across the world, and are praying at different times, we are one in Your Spirit, and You count us as many. Jesus, You have told us in John 14, that if we ask You for anything in Your name, You will do it.
So, in Your powerful name, Jesus, we ask You to shatter the strongholds and overcome all the principalities and powers that make people in the CIS deaf and blind to Your love and presence. In the name of Jesus, we ask that, in Your much greater power and abiding love, You will defeat all enemies – human or spiritual – who oppress the people of these nations.
Spirit of Life, defeat the powers of addiction. Release all those bound by addiction into your freedom and healing. Because, as you say in John chapter 8, if the Son sets them free, they will be free indeed.
Lord of Truth, take victory over corruption, so that people with integrity and honesty will flourish. Transform the systems and governments so that people will be free to experience economic prosperity through honest means.
Father of all good things, meet the needs of the poor. Provide them safe and adequate shelter, food, and work. But more importantly, teach them that their security is found in You, and they can come to You for all they need, as you say in Luke chapter 11.
For all those who believe in other gods and powers, and have given them a foothold in their lives, set them free from deception and false belief. Reveal to them that You are the only Word of Life, as you proclaim in John 14:6.
For those who believe in nothing, where atheism retains a stronghold, dismantle their unbelief with the joy and peace that comes only from the true and living God.
Where there is soft conflict, or armed, violent conflict, and people driven from their homes, land, and communities, bring healing. Where there is ethnic or racial hatred and tension, wage a true and lasting peace. No one can help enemy peoples achieve the miracle of forgiveness and reconciliation but You.
In the name of Jesus, we pray against the powers and principalities of human trafficking. Set free those who are enslaved; bring them divine healing and new life. Lead the perpetrators of trafficking to sorrowful repentance for their crimes, and a renewed life in You. For those who do not repent, bring an end to their exploitation and abuse.
Jesus, in Your divine power, pursue the hearts of those in all levels of government, so that they give favor and freedom to Your people. Open doors and loosen restrictions on churches and believers who want to share the gospel in their communities.
We have no hope except in You alone. And yet we can have all hope, because we hope in You, Jesus. Thank You that You are already working across these nations, even if we don’t think we can see it. Open our eyes to join You in the work You are already doing to bring wholeness, healing, hope, joy and peace to the people of the CIS Field.
We pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.
The additional scripture readings for today are from:
Learn more about the countries of the CIS Field, and the Church of the Nazarene there, by watching our video.
Thank you for gathering across borders and time zones to intercede with me today. It is a beautiful thing to be one in Christ. I look forward to rejoining you tomorrow to intercede for our Christian brothers and sisters, and the church, in these nations.