American missionaries are still being held hostage in Haiti more than two weeks after 17 people affiliated with Christian Aid Ministries were kidnapped. Kidnappers are asking for $1 million in ransom for each person under threats to murder them all, including five children.
While we continue to pray for their release, it's important to understand the dangers of missionary work in the present day and pray without ceasing for missionaries—and their mission. David Barrett, editor of the World Christian Encyclopedia, estimates about 130 Christian foreign missionaries are killed each year—and most of those deaths go unreported in newspapers.
Indeed, being a missionary can be dangerous—and even deadly. Those who lay down their lives so the Word of the Lord can run swiftly through the nations, and Jesus can be glorified, face many perils on their journeys (see 2 Thessalonians 3:1) and need intercessory prayer back-up. This is one reason why Paul the apostle asked for prayer so often on his journeys—and one reason why we should pray without ceasing for those who literally risk their lives so others can find eternal life in Christ.
You'll remember Jim Elliot who was killed by the spears of tribesmen in Ecuador at 28 years old in 1956. As a result of his death and those with him, the tribe was transformed. Today, over 20 percent of that once-savage tribe are Christ followers, which would have thrilled Elliot's heart. Elliot once said, "Father, make of me a crisis man. Bring those I contact to decision. Let me not be a milepost on a single road; make me a fork, that men must turn one way or another on facing Christ in me."
Let's pray for the missionaries and their mission. Find prayer points below and please join us for our monthly church-wide prophetic intercession call. Register here to get the log in.
"Father, we repent for not making intercession over Your missionaries a priority. Forgive us for getting caught up in our everyday lives and forgetting about those whom You've sent out with the gospel in their mouths. Give us an urgency to pray for their safety and agree with them for the salvation of those to whom You've sent them."
"We thank you for the missionaries around the world who have said yes to Your call to go out into the world making disciples (see Matthew 28:19). Raise up more laborers, Lord, with a passion to see the captives set free from the kingdom of darkness."
"Holy Spirit, lead and guide Your missionaries on their journeys through the harvest fields Christ assigned them so they are in the right field at the right time (see John 4:35). Go before Christ's missionaries and prepare a path of freedom and prepare the hearts of the people to receive the gospel as truth."
"Father, raise up intercessors who help break open spiritual atmospheres so the Word of the Lord through Your missionaries is unobstructed and people will have an ear to hear and be drawn to Christ the Savior (see Matthew 9:28)."
"Encourage Your missionaries when they grow weary, hide them under the shadow of Your wings. Help them keep their eyes on the prize in the face of adversity against their calling (see Isaiah 40:31, Matthew 22:14)."
"Father, pour out Your spirit of might upon the missionaries going out into the harvest field and strengthen them in their inner man so they can stand and withstand in the evil day (see Ephesians 3:14; Ephesians 6:13)."
"Use Your missionaries to prove the Jesus they preach is alive, with signs and wonders following them. Anoint them to heal the sick raise the dead, cleanse the lepers and cast out demons (see Matthew 10:8)."
"Keep Your missionaries safe from enemy attacks through anti-missionary terrorists and other evil plots (see Mark 16:18). Let your missionaries be hidden to those who would try to stop the work of the gospel (see Luke 4:30; John 5:13). We plead the blood of Jesus over every missionary on assignment for Christ. Help them remember You are their refuge and strength when they face danger."
"Give Your missionaries boldness to speak convicting truth when put on trial for speaking of Jesus and in the face of deadly opposition to their mission (see Matthew 10:8). Anoint the missionaries to minister the gospel in a way that will be understood as truth, with a sharp understanding of who Jesus really is. Give the people around Your missionaries a supernatural revelation that will change the hearts of man and bring glory to Christ's name."
"Father, help Your missionaries stay strong in faith, love and grace in the trials and tribulations they face as they take Your gospel to the ends of the earth (see Joshua 1:9; John 5:4)."
"Father, multiply the provisions (food, clothes), Lord, that Your missionaries and those to whom they are ministering have more than enough to share (see Luke 9:16; Luke 14:23)."
"Father, let resources and finances flow bountifully to do the work in the mission fields. We break the power of financial attacks against missionaries and the groups that send them out (see Psalm 50:10)."
"Father, we ask You to pour out Your wisdom on every aspect of these mission trips, outreaches and lives dedicated to full-time missions work (see James 1:5)."
"Father, give us hearts for the lost we encounter in our everyday lives. Make us sensitive to Your Spirit so we can speak words that will draw people to Christ (see Luke 15:4-5)."
Awakening Prayer Hubs is focusing intensely on praying for missionaries and the success of their mission this month. You can join us by launching a hub, joining a hub or sponsoring a hub at awakeningprayerhubs.com.
Jennifer LeClaire is senior leader of Awakening House of Prayer in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, founder of the Ignite Network and founder of the Awakening Blaze prayer movement. She is author of over 25 books. Find her online at jenniferleclaire.org or email her at email@example.com.
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