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Justice Prayers - September 30, 2020

I keep my eyes always on the Lord.  With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken. - Psalm 16:8

Detention Centers Increasing in China for Muslims

New reports estimate that there are 380 detention facilities in China’s Xinjiang province, holding roughly 1 million people.  While officials name the detentions “reeducation” or “vocational training”  the people, not convicted of any crime,  are not allowed to leave until their thoughts are transformed.  Their religious and cultural identities, mostly Uighur Muslims, are labelled extremist and terrorist.   

Lord, Lift the veil of doublespeak and propaganda so that light  is shone into these hidden areas. Give strength to the women and men caught in these places.  We know you are not an absentee landlord and that even in these places, your spirit is at work to bring life and freedom.  We pray for freedom for every individual and that your Kingdom good news for the poor, the blind, the oppressed, the imprisoned would break into these places.  

Food Insecurity Amidst the Pandemic

Bread for the World CEO Rev. Eugene Cho remarks that about 54 million or 1 in 6 Americans are already affected by Food Insecurity where there is not access to enough food or nutritious food on a daily basis.  With the pandemic and its secondary consequences for jobs and flow of resources, this is exacerbated.  Lord we look to you.

Good Father, You created the world to create life abundant.  You created us to participate in this world’s provision.  And we trust you are redeeming this world and our hearts every day.  Open our eyes to see the hungry in our own communities, on our own streets.  Open our eyes to the possibilities to feed each other the food we need to thrive.  

Where our imaginations limit us as to what can be done, breathe into us your mind for policies, infrastructure, attitude and assumption shifts that can create good change.   

Sept 30 is Orange Shirt Day in Canada

Orange Shirt Day is a day to for remembrance and education about the legacy of residential schools,  to witness and honor intergenerational journey of healing for survivors and to commit to reconciliation.   Its name comes from the personal story of Phyllis (Jack) Webstad and how at 6 years old, on her first day of residential school, she had the new orange shirt her Grandmother had given her taken away.  

Orange Shirt Day is a day to remember but also for Christ followers to prayerfully ask “what is next on this road of reconciliation?”  

Lord of all Creation,

Help us to remember our histories well – fill in the gaps in our awareness.  Lead us into all truth.  Lord, help us to live out your kingdom well in light of all the ways we failed each other and you.   We ask that the continuous journey of both settler and Indigenous neighbors in Canada be an honoring journey to The Creator of both.  May we not stop at remembering, content to repost on social media or wear orange only, but stir in us all a desire for a common good that looks like your kind of kingdom.  Lead us to the next steps past mere commemoration and into changed, restored, reciprocal community.   

Brazil removes protections on its mangroves and other fragile ecosystems

One acre of Mangrove absorbs the same amount of CO2 as one acre of Amazon Rainforest.  But Brazil’s President Bolsinaro has removed protections in place since 2002 for these sensitive and essential ecosystems.  Fire and development are fastly destroying large chunks of the Amazon Rainforest and the earth’s ability to regulate CO2 amounts.  So we pray:

Jesus, you are the firstborn of creation.  

So we pray that you bring us to our senses.   Stop leaders from removing protections of our needed ecosystems.  Bring a change of mind to those who do not see the need to protect what you have so graciously provided for the local populations but also for the world.  

Raise up leaders who, by your spirit, will speak and advocate for the restoration of the natural world, the gracious and abundant home you’ve provided for us all. 

Becoming (part of) the Answer to our Own Prayers

Defining Neighbour - A Reflection from Harold Roscher

In this devotional Harold Roscher calls us to reflect on the question 'who is my neighbour.' Starting with the story of the Good Samaritan from Luke 10 we reflect together on what it means to act out the law of love we've been given. Mr. Roscher goes on to draw examples from his work as the Director of the Edmonton Native Healing Center and adds the reminder that we all need one another.  Watch the full video here.

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