Prayer of Encouragement, Voices of Youths, 2022

The Prayer of Encouragement for 31 January

Deacon Arlene Burton offers the Prayer of Encouragement for 31 January 2021 for our country, businesses, frontline and other workers.

My Brothers, Sisters and Friends, let us give God thanks in all circumstances. We are grateful to Him for each new day, for the lessons learned through good and bad times, and for all that He has done and continues to do in our lives. I pray that His mercy, covering, favour and blessings will be upon you and your family in all of the experiences that are about to unfold. May you be encouraged. Stay focused on God and surrender everything to Him. If you or anyone you know needs prayer, please let us know by posting your request here on our website or on our contact page.

Today, I will continue to look at the issue of perseverance. In recent times, I noticed that many persons are losing the energy to live, the desire to solve problems and the will to focus on God, allowing Him to direct their path. I am not sure what the next experience will be. I do not know the turn that life will take, I do not know when the atmosphere will change from one permeated by a Virus that we cannot see, nor touch.

However, I know that God reveals Himself to humankind in numerous ways. He wants to have a close relationship with us. He wants to be the God, Lord and Saviour of our lives. God is consistent. He can do all things, He controls all things, and He lives. He allows us to go down the rough roads of life, to lose people who were precious to us, to lose certain essentials of life, to feel pain and shed tears. We may become fearful of life, wanting to lock ourselves away as much as it is possible.

As I reflected on the many challenges that happened on a weekly basis to those around me, and in my life, the need of each person (emotional and physical) takes a lot of time and energy to address and resolve.

How then should we live? I am of the view that we are called to decide on taking the terrains of life that require new dynamic positive thinking and behaviour. Therefore, we need to be encouraged and empowered; to be reminded that God is our main source; deal with the challenges as they emerge; stand in the midst of life’s battles knowing that He is already the next person standing beside us; being grateful; support each other; serve and acknowledge God in all that we say and do, and be consistent in our efforts.

I recalled the experience of the worn shoe that was told to you a few weeks ago. I tried different ways to see how best I could do a temporary repair to my walking partner’s shoes so that her feet were protected until she got home. We bored holes in the top and bottom and tied it, we tightened the lace, we tried to put her foot on top of the shoe and tied it. We took off the shoe completely and put two shocks on one foot. However, none of those worked. We had to abandon the pair of shoes and give her my pair of socks to put over hers so she could walk home more comfortably.

You know, a number of attempts were made to solve the problem of the shoe. It led to unpredicted delays. I missed doing some of the things that were previously planned. I even missed two critical appointments, which had to be rescheduled for the following week. You may note that one simple issue threw us off balance. Imagine the more complicated issues that we have to face, which may discombobulate our lives.

Many times, we become anxious when something falls out of place. We think that life is unfair and it does not make sense. At times, persons get lost in self-wonders. We try to solve the problems of the world in our minds. This can lead to a state of depression, which may become intense, leading to destructive thoughts and actions.

I still ask, how then should we live? Well, the apostle Paul gave the Brethren a few words of encouragement.

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

Romans 5:1-4 (NIV)

We could say that Paul puts the grace of God as our point of focus. The death of Christ has given rise to the hope that we can use as an assurance. This hope grants a peace that we cannot otherwise experience. It is a hope that makes us want to continue to do life even in the midst of fiery sufferings. It is a hope that gives rise to persistency, makes us want to persevere. Perseverance gives rise to a work in us. It is a hope that makes us grow and develop to serve God and man, that we talk about. It is a hope that we use to encourage others, to encourage self, that gives us confidence in God.   

Brethren and Friends, the writer of James threw in his piece by encouraging us to keep our focus on the end results. We may ask, what am I getting out of this experience? Sometimes we determine the end result as one of doom but here James is suggesting that we should take a positive approach.  He said:

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

James 1:2-4 (NIV)

Peter also threw in similar words of encouragement but with warnings that point to the maintenance of our integrity in our sufferings. He said:

Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange was happening to you. But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed. If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. If you suffer, it should not be as a murderer or thief or any other kind of criminal, or even as a meddler. However, if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name.

1 Peter 4:12-13 (NIV)

Brethren and Friends, I am still learning to persevere in my sufferings, being reminded of the hope of God’s glory that comes through my belief in Him. I am learning to trust Him as I face each experience, reminding myself that the work of God is being accomplished in my life. How then do you live?

As we meditate, let us pray

Our Father and God, we thank You for your grace and mercies. We thank You for sending your Son, Jesus Christ, to die so that we may live. It is because of your mercies that we are not consumed. We thank you that your compassion never ceases, that they are new every morning. Great is your faithfulness. Lord, we thank You for that assurance of the hope of your glory. Thank You, Lord.

Lord, we thank You for another week. We thank You for sustaining us through these unpredictable and uncertain times.

We come in the name of Jesus Christ, asking that You have mercy on us. Cleanse us from all unrighteousness and forgive all of our sins. Out of the depths of our hearts, we cry out to You, O God. Give ear to our cry for mercy for if You Lord kept a record of sin who could stand but with You there is forgiveness.

Lord, You are awesome, there is none like You. You are all-powerful, all-knowing and ever-present. It is by your power that the universe is created. You give breath and it is You who has the right to take it. We praise, honour and glorify your name. We exalt your name together. Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

Lord, we lift up to You leaders of our families, communities, Churches and related associations and institutions, private sector, political directorate, government and other institutions. We ask for your guiding hand, a touch on every heart and mind so that we will live justly, love mercy and walk humbly with you. Grant us courage, strength, compassion, wisdom and soundness of mind to selfless act in the best interest of those we serve.

We pray especially for 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 remember also the judges in our congregation, Paula Blake Powell and Grace Henry McKenzie.

Lord, we ask that You identify leaders of criminal activities and their support teams. Hold each person accountable. Lord, remove their privileges and nullify their power and authority. Grant us peace and sustain our economy.

Lord, we lift up those who have lost the energy to live. Grant a wave of restoration and re-energise those who are losing hope. Lord, cause it that they turn their eyes and hearts to you as the main source. Grant strength to those who are weak, and endow them with your peace. Help us to be the keeper of each other. Let us not weary in well-doing but in everything put our trust and hope in You.

We pray for those who are still mourning. Grant strength to the weary and increase the power of the weak. Lord, provide them with comfort, hope and peace.

Jehovah Rapha, remember those among us who are on the usual sick and shut-in list, as well as Sisters Iris Lawrence, Sister Valerie Smellie, Lelith James, Jennifer Nicholson, Virginia Muir, Marville (Cherry) Murray (Sister Iris Lawrence’s daughter), Janet Chen-Young, Joyce Bailey, Lucille Alexander, Jhada Graham, Ethlyn Atkins, Cherrie Lee, Brother George Gabbidon, Mr Alan Ashley (Sister Dawn Ashley’s father), Brother Danville Japp’s father, Mr Isaiah Japp, Mr, Delorn Dixon (Sister Rachael Dixon’s husband) and any member or family member who is currently struggling with the Covid-19 virus. So we pray for healing, comfort and restoration.

Hear O Lord and have mercy in Jesus’ name we pray with thanksgiving. 


Our Prayers of Encouragement are for everyone. Therefore, if you are also in need of prayer or comfort, please contact us with your request. We would be so very happy to share with you.

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