Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas is for Children

handmade toy trucks in Lui, South Sudan

This well known phrase reminds me of the frenzy of a Western Christmas with visits to Santa, cookie baking, wrapping gifts, and play practice. But realistically Christmas is for everyone. Would you pray with me that during these tense days before the referendum vote in South Sudan (it's only 2 weeks away now) that the men, women, and children of this country would recognize that God has given them the greatest gift of all ~ a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. And that only through a personal relationship with him will they realize the hope for the future that they so desperately crave after years of war and suffering.

I'm happy to report that the voter registration went well with over 3.2 million people registering to vote. In recent weeks there have been reports of North Sudan bombing Southerners along the border areas. Earlier this fall Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, called Sudan a ticking time bomb. Looking at the situation from a human standpoint it can easily appear desperate.

Prayer is the key. Please continue praying for this nation; both north and south and for God's will to be done.

Specifically would you pray with me for the church in Lui? A week ago the church Bishop passed away while in a Nairobi hospital for treatment. Pray as the church raises funds to clear his hospital bill and plans his funeral. Also be in prayer for the interim Bishop and the process of appointing a new Bishop. It is WGM's desire to come alongside this church in ministry in 2011.

Have you ever heard of the Christmas massacres? The rebel army from Uganda known as the Lord's Resistance Army has a history of brutally attacking the people of Southern Sudan and Congo during the holiday season. Let's pray that the plans of the LRA would be stopped this year. Pray that the hearts and minds of children who have witnessed and seen the effects of brutality would be protected and healed. Only Jesus can erase the harmful images and emotions that come from witnessing such atrocities.

Children in Africa also suffer from lack of health care. Karen Duncan shares from Lui Hospital some of the needs we can pray for.

Pictured above is Dr. Steve Manchester, a missionary to Tenwek Hospital, in the overcrowded and understaffed Pediatric ward at Lui Hospital. Would you consider giving a gift to help care for sick children at Lui Hospital? Click here to give on-line or send a check to World Gospel Mission, PO Box 948, Marion, IN 46952 for Account no. 130-25791-7620. If you'd like to give a gift to my ministry account to be used where most needed click here.

Thank you for your generous gifts to me and to my ministry this past year!

I like this translation of one of the familiar scriptures about giving gifts to children.
"Don't bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need. This isn't a cat-and-mouse, hide-and-seek game we're in. If your child asks for bread, do you trick him with sawdust? If he asks for fish, do you scare him with a live snake on his plate? As bad as you are, you wouldn't think of such a thing. You're at least decent to your own children. So don't you think the God who conceived you in love will be even better?"
Matthew 11:7, The Message

As we his children cry out on behalf of the Sudanese he hears our cries and answers. Thank you for praying.

Asking God for more than we can hope or imagine this holiday season as Christ's Kingdom continues to be revealed in our hearts and in Sudan,


1 comment:

  1. Hi Joy,
    I have been keeping up to date with your recent blogs. I see you have stayed in Lui and been to Lui quite a bit. Im Dan and im 14 years and my parish and i have also been helping Lui Diocese. I hope to go to Lui next year with my friend when i will be 16. We are blackmore vale deanery and you can see previous mission reports on Okeford benefice website - news from Lui.
    Nice to see others are helping !