Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.-James 5:16
Today, look for God’s ceaseless action in our lives. He is making us into something better. Take time today to thank Him for continuously improving us.
The Presidential Prayer Team, Open Doors Ministry, and Voice of the Martyrs have prayer requests, and I have a foreign missions report that I have forwarded below.
United States President Ulysses S. Grant
was born on
Then there came again and touched me one like the appearance of a man, and he strengthened me, And said, O man greatly beloved, fear not: peace be unto thee, be strong, yea, be strong. And when he had spoken unto me, I was strengthened, and said, Let my lord speak; for thou hast strengthened me. Then said he, Knowest thou wherefore I come unto thee? and now will I return to fight with the prince of Persia: and when I am gone forth, lo, the prince of Grecia shall come. But I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth: and there is none that holdeth with me in these things, but Michael your prince.
++++++++++++PRESIDENTIAL PRAYER TEAM PRAYER REQUESTS++++++++++++
Executive Prayer Focus
Attorney General Jeff Sessions
“To those who wish to challenge the Trump administration’s commitment to public safety, national security, and the rule of law, I warn you: illegally entering this country will not be rewarded, but will instead be met with the full prosecutorial powers of the Department of Justice,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement.
Legislative Prayer Focus
U.S. Representative for Texas Mac Thornberry
The United States and its allies need to keep a "lid" on the Syria situation, Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee Mac Thornberry said this week.
Military Leadership Prayer Focus
Commander, Resolute Support Mission General John Nicholson
Army General John W. Nicholson, Jr., said the military parts of President Donald J. Trump's strategy are now in place in Afghanistan and they are already making a difference.
Judicial Leadership Prayer Focus
District Court for Southern Ohio Judge Michael R. Barrett
Federal Judge Michael R. Barrett has given preliminary approval of a multi-million dollar lawsuit against the IRS that was filed by the tea party and other conservative organizations in 2013.
Pray for the President and his Administration
Thanks to a directive from President Donald Trump, the Bureau of Prisons is now making it easier for inmates to gain nationally-accredited trade apprenticeships while incarcerated.
U.S. farmers will be protected by the Trump Administration during rising trade tensions between the United States and China, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said.
Pray for the Trump Administration as they look to improve the life of all Americans.
Pray for Congressional Leaders
A proposal is being crafted in the Senate that would give President Donald Trump broad authority to wage war against terrorists across the globe, although Congress would retain some key checks on his power.
House Speaker Paul Ryan offered a broad vision for workforce development programs to better encourage people to get out of welfare and into work and break up the "poverty monopoly."
Pray as Congress works on legislation that covers foreign as well as domestic critical issues.
Pray for Judicial Needs
The Arizona Supreme Court unanimously ruled that illegal immigrant "Dreamers" will have to pay out-of-state tuition rates in the state's community colleges.
Attorneys in Baltimore, Maryland, are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a ruling that struck down as unconstitutional an ordinance requiring pregnancy centers to notify patients if they don't offer abortion or birth control services.
Pray for wisdom for the nation's jurists as they deal with cases involving individual benefits.
Pray for Current Events
WARS AND TERRORISM
Russia is jamming U.S. drones over Syria in a pre-emptive step to stop airstrikes. Their efforts began a few weeks ago with Russia blocking or scrambling encryption signals to smaller drones.
The UN said it was investigating "disturbing reports of serious harm to civilians" in an Afghan airstrike that hit a religious school in which dozens of children were killed or wounded.
Pray fervently about the dangerous situation in Syria and how the U.S. will respond.
FOREIGN INTERESTS AND CONFLICTS
North and South Korea held talks over establishing a telephone hotline between their leaders and other communication issues ahead of the April 27 summit between the two rivals.
China has installed equipment on two of its fortified artificial island outposts in the South China Sea capable of jamming communications and radar systems, a significant step in creeping militarization of the area.
Pray for President Trump and his advisers as they approach a meeting date with the North Korean leader.
ISRAEL AND THE MIDDLE EAST
Two Israeli fighter jets crossed into southern Lebanon and launched a number of missiles that struck a section of a Syrian base used exclusively by Iran's Revolutionary Guard and Hezbollah.
The presidents of Iran, Turkey, and Russia have expressed determination to "speed up their efforts to ensure calm on the ground" in Syria, saying they were committed to a lasting cease-fire.
Pray as Israel is drawn more and more into the Syrian conflict in its attempt at self-protection.
The total number of people receiving unemployment benefits fell to the lowest level in 44 years last month, the Department of Labor Reported.
China's president said his government would "significantly lower" tariffs on vehicle imports this year as part of efforts to further open its giant economy to the world, and a possible "blink" in the trade dispute with the U.S.
Pray for negotiations between China and the U.S. over a "fair playing field" for trade.
ACROSS THE STATES
The Rhode Island judiciary committee is set to take up two measures that would strengthen their gun control laws: one to ban bump stocks and the other to allow "extreme risk protection orders."
Tourists flocked to the Territory of Puerto Rico for Easter, Passover, and spring break vacations in near record numbers despite some areas of the island still struggling through rebuilding after last year's hurricanes.
Pray for wisdom for state legislators and governors as they serve their public's interests.
++++++++++++OPEN DOORS PRAYER REQUESTS++++++++++++
You’ve probably heard about Boko Haram—the Muslim extremist group who has been violently attacking peaceful tribes in Nigeria.
Sadly, this same region is now under a new threat from militant Fulani herdsmen. These Muslim extremists have already claimed thousands of Christian lives as they pillage entire villages, while brutally killing and raping local residents.
But here’s the biggest problem. While the world is familiar with Boko Haram, most people have never heard about the militant Hausa-Fulani Muslim Herdsmen.
Their attacks have received little attention in the press compared to Boko Haram. And, as a result, world leaders and aid groups may not even be aware of the plight of these Christians.
This month, we’re asking you to help us change that. Will you please share the attached photos on your social media to help raise awareness about these little-known attacks on Christians?
And, if you are willing to use your social media voice on an ongoing basis, please feel free to join us a social media influencer. By going here, you can sign up to help us raise awareness and share stories of persecuted Christians every month.
At Open Doors, we count it a privilege to serve our often courageous brothers and sisters who suffer for their faith. And our work couldn’t continue, or increase, without the voices of people like you.
++++++++++++VOICE OF THE MARTYRS PRAYER REQUESTS++++++++++++
PAKISTAN: Acquittal of 20 Accused for Burning Christian Couple
Sources: The Christian Post, Radio Free Europe, Morning Star News
Shahzad Masih (26) and his pregnant wife, Shama (24), were disposing of garbage in the village of Kot Radhakishan in November 2014 when Shama allegedly burned pages from the Quran (see this page).
After news of the incident had spread around the community, a frenzied mob consisting of hundreds gathered demanding their death. Ultimately, the young couple were thrown into a brick kiln where they were burned to death. It was later determined that they had been falsely accused. It is believed that the rumours were started because the impoverished couple owed the kiln owner money.
In 2016, five people were sentenced to death and several more given jail time for the crime. Despite these convictions, many suspects who had participated in the killings have gone free. On March 24th, 2018, a total of 20 men were acquitted for their part in the attack, and numerous other participants have never been charged. Many question whether full justice regarding this case will ever be served by the country's judicial system.
As you pray for justice to be served, ask also that God's peace will rest on the couple's family and friends who continue to grieve their tragic loss (Philippians 4:7). Pray that His grace will be evident not only in their lives but also in the lives of those who participated in the attack, so they will understand His gift of salvation and come to faith in Christ.
UGANDA: New Christian Attacked with Burning Oil
Source: Morning Star News
One week after a young Muslim man came to faith in Christ, relatives who were angry about his conversion burned him with hot cooking oil. On March 4th, Gobera Bashir, 27, went to church with a friend in a neighbouring village. There he received Jesus Christ as his Saviour and Lord. The pastor gave him a Bible and encouraged him to be cautious when reading it, since his family members were all Muslims.
A few days later, his sister found him reading the Bible and word got around to others. On the evening of March 10th, a group of people forced their way into Gobera's house, bound him and poured burning hot oil on him -- resulting in serious burns over forty percent of his body. He was then dragged down to a swamp where he was left unconscious.
When Gobera awoke, he found himself surrounded by Christians who took him to a medical centre for treatment. At last report, many of his wounds are not healing properly and he continues to need further treatment. The young man, who is presently in hiding, has not reported the incident to the police in order to protect the identities of those who are helping him.
Please pray for Gobera's healing, specifically requesting that he will receive needed medical treatment and that the pain will subside. Ask for God's blessing to also be upon those who are helping him during this time of recovery (Matthew 25:40). May the Lord speak to those responsible for the attack, enabling them to realize the error of their ways and their need for the love and saving grace of Christ.
ALGERIA: Christian Released from Prison!
Sources: Middle East Concern, World Watch Monitor
We are thrilled to report that Slimane Bouhafs has been released from prison after serving 18 months for blasphemy. Slimane was arrested in July 2016 for sharing a message on Facebook which was ruled to be an insult to Islam.
Slimane was originally sentenced to the maximum of five years in prison. However, in September 2016, the time of his incarceration was reduced to three years, and then further reduced in July 2017 through a partial presidential pardon.
While in prison, Slimane suffered beatings from fellow prisoners, resulting in serious health issues. Due to the health concerns, his family asked for parole or that he be transferred to a prison closer to home. Both of those requests were rejected. Finally, while travelling to visit Slimane in prison on April 1st, his wife and daughter received a call notifying them that he was officially released!
Both Slimane and his daughter have expressed deep appreciation for the many encouraging letters of support the family has received from around the world. VOM Canada's Director for North Africa and the Middle East gives this response: "We praise God that our (Christian) brother is released. The timing is perfect, as it brings encouragement to the local church and to his family." Thank you for continuing to uphold Slimane in prayer as he makes this transition...for his ongoing protection, healing and restoration.
If you would like to post a prayer of praise or petition on behalf of our persecuted family around the globe, visit VOMC's prayer wall.
++++++++++++INTERNATIONAL MISSIONS REPORT++++++++++++
I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.-I Timothy 2:1-4
Pray for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad who desperately needs to be saved.
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