The Prayer of Encouragement for 30 July
Deacon Arlene Burton offers the Prayer of Encouragement for 30 July 2021 for our country, businesses, frontline and other workers. Deacon Burton owns the copyright to this post. We reprint here with her permission.
My Brothers, Sisters and Friends, we are hoping that you are well. However, if not, please let us know. Just a reminder that if you or anyone you know needs prayer, please let us know. You can post your prayer request here on our website.
I am grateful to God for the multiplicity and effectiveness of His character. He is so unlimited in His abilities and can do for me far beyond what I could ask or imagine. I recognise that I do not have the capacity to understand His characteristics in the fullness of its existence. Yet I was made in His image. This has put into place an expectation that I would reflect His characteristics. How is that supposed to be done when the magnificence of God cannot be truly understood because it is uncontainable in my thought or imagination? How can I fit my limited being into His unlimited greatness? I feel lost beyond billions of times just thinking about it.
Could I look at it this way? I reflect God within my limitations. Hence, the gifts and abilities that He has given me through the work of the Holy Spirit are to be developed and used for His glory. This is how my reflection of Him is magnified, through His glory. Although I have limitations, I should keep growing and developing more and more through my abilities and gifts.
The fact is, I do not know the extent of what I am to achieve, as long as I am alive. Therefore, I should never sit comfortably thinking that I have attained and accomplished my purpose because once I am alive it is continuous, it is evolving. You see, the Lord God Almighty is a shield for me. He is my glory and the lifter up of my head. Thus, I must be connected with Him at all times, and on all levels. This is when I am effective.
Do you know something? My neighbour’s banana tree is bearing a bunch of bananas which is completely hanging heavily over my side of the fence. I noted that the tree has the ability to produce the banana fruit but it needs a lot of help. If that tree is not supported by a stick it will fall and its fruit will not come to fulsomeness. It would not achieve its purpose, that is, to bear bananas that can be cooked or ripened.
Many times we may feel like the things that we are called to do on earth are too heavy to bear. Like the banana tree, it may appear to others and ourselves that we are called to serve too heavy a plate within the sphere of life. It may be felt that we have the gifts and abilities to do great things but as followers of Christ, we may feel hampered.
Yet, I am of the view that God works through us. He establishes the work of our hands. He provides the shield/support. The things that we are called to do, if done in the right way, are far beyond our limited capacity. How can we achieve greatness? How then, can the magnificence of God be seen through our lives? Here goes, our limited capacity works through His unlimited capacity for His glory. Please, think about it a bit. This takes us back to our connection with Him. We need to remain connected to Him.
Let us take a trip to the ministry of Elisha. I want us to consider a particular event. Elisha had what I called a “dripping” anointing. His very coat contained power. He inherited the coat from Elijah who he understudied. He begged him for that coat. I noted that Elisha was used in so many ways to demonstrate God’s glory, even in death. The scripture tells us, “Elisha died and was buried. Now Moabite raiders used to enter the country every spring. Once while some Israelites were burying a man, suddenly they saw a band of raiders. So they threw the man’s body into Elisha’s tomb. When the body touched Elisha’s bones, the man came to life and stood up on his feet.” (2 Kings 13: 20-21, NIV).
The first time I read that passage I went over it a few times. Say what! The man’s body touched Elisha’s bones and came alive. That must have been frightening! If that happened today, it is highly likely that the graveyard would only have a dead man standing. I can imagine the screaming and running.
Lord God Almighty, you are not easy. God is so powerful. Think about it. We have been told the story of the dry bones coming together, to life. The Lord demonstrated His power to Ezekiel in another way, that is, using dry bones. The Spirit of the Lord said to Ezekiel, “…Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’” (Ezekiel 37:4-6, NIV).
Ezekiel did as instructed. “So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army.” (Ezekiel 37:10, NIV). Aah! Wow! What a mighty God we serve!
Although there is death, there is an opportunity for life. We may feel some things are too far gone. We may feel life does not hold any hope for us. In the midst of death, we need to realise that there is the possibility of life, there is the possibility of restoration. In everything, God must be glorified. God must be magnified.
We can also recognise that absolutely nothing is impossible for God. Yet we struggle to trust Him and spend time with Him. We fail to love Him with all of our hearts, soul and mind, not to lean to our own understanding and to acknowledge Him at all times and in all things. We fail to seek Him first and His righteousness, to diligently seek Him. Wow! Oh my God, have mercy on us. There is a tendency to be ritualistic rather than being practical in our relationship with God, allowing Him to work through life with us. Yet God’s love for us remains immeasurable. He still wants to work through our gifts and abilities, to accomplish purpose. Think bout it, chat bout it.” What are you going to do about it?
Let us pray:
Lord, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth! You have set Your glory in the heavens. When we consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have set in place, what is mankind that You are mindful of, human beings that You care for them? Lord, You put everything under Your feet, (Psalm 8).
Our souls praise You. Lord, our God, you are very great, You are clothed with splendour and majesty. Lord, You wrap Yourself in light as with a garment, You stretch out the heavens like a tent. You set the earth on its foundations. It can never be moved, (Psalm 104). Lord, You are awesome! Hallelujah!
Lord, we thank You for who You are and all that You have done for us as individuals, families, communities, Churches, businesses, government and a country as a whole. We give You all of the glory, honour and praise.
Lord, we come in the name of Jesus Christ asking that You have mercy on us. Forgive all of our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Lord, help us to forgive those who have wronged us and lead us not into temptation but deliver us from all evil for Your name’s sake.
Lord, we continue to face many challenges as a country especially with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic but our hope is in You. Our eyes are on You because power and might are in Your hands. So help us to turn to You in all things and at all times. Guard us also against the wiles of evil and cause it that Your will is accomplished in our lives.
Lord, we present to You those who are causing distress on others in whatever way or form. Lord, cause it that each man/woman is convicted to change our ways and turn to You, for nothing is impossible with You. Instead, help us to support each other. Lord, be a strong tower for us, especially those in the medical and connected fields.
Lord, we ask for Your continued mercy, provision, healing, protection, and comfort on us as we journey through these uncommon times. Help us not to lose hope but to remember the God we serve.
Lord, we pray especially for our church leaders, the Honourable Prime Minister of Jamaica Andrew Holness, Minister of Health and Wellness, Christopher Tufton, Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Nigel Clarke, health workers and support staff, Minister of Education, Youth and the Environment, Fayval Williams; Minister of National Security, Horace Chang and his team, Minister of Justice, Delroy Chuck, and the leader of the opposition Mark Golding and his team. We also remember the judges in our congregation, Paula Blake Powell and Grace Henry McKenzie.
We lift up to You those among us who are in business: Ewan and Maxine Oliver; Lanna and Desmond Bennett; Warrick Bogle, Carol and Leroy Blake, Marcia Leair, Robert and Bevelin Smith, Paulette Dixon, Kemorine and Karl Henry, Ava Comrie, Catherine Barkley and husband, Cornel Richards and family, Everton Lewis, Pauline and Mark Garvey, Brother Astley Hall, Maxine and Benedict Ranger, Melva Knight, Nicole Fender, Sharon Baldie, Karl Jones and others.
We also pray for the frontline workers connected with GMC: Medical Doctors: Asana Anderson Wilks and Rohan Wilks, Kahlete Falloon, Tina Kong, Vernon Jones, Leighton Logan; trainee doctors (Emily Reynolds, Gabrielle Channer); Dentists: doing emergency cases; Jhenelle Black, Dania Jones, Eleanor Reynolds; Pharmacists: Sandra Bucknor-Jones, Viveen Watson; other doctors and nurses from GMC or in connection with members and adherents of GMC who are working on the frontline (for example Dr Richard Reynolds) and their families.
So Lord, strengthen us, provide for us, grant us insight and help us to exercise good judgement in all that we say and do. Lord, also grant unto us Your peace. Hear, O Lord, and answer in Jesus’ name we pray with thanksgiving.
Our Prayers of Encouragement are for everyone. Therefore, please contact us with your request if you are also in need of prayer or comfort. We would be so very happy to share with you.