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Praying for the Long-Haul?!? I. Don’t. Think. So.

April 20, 2011

Much of the time when I pray, I want answers.
Right.
Away.
Right.
Now.
Much of the time when I pray, God doesn’t provide the answers right away.
Let alone, right now. We are urged to pray and spend time with God, and despite his trustworthyness and faithfulness, I often find it difficult to pray over things for the long term if I don’t see movement in the direction I want or expect pretty quickly.
Yet because of this, I’m quite certain that I frequently miss out on being a part of exciting things that God is doing, because of my desire for quick answers.

Jack Popjes is a “famous name” in the world of Wycliffe Canada. He’s known as the story teller. The story teller that tells real (non fiction) stories in the most beautiful way. I recieved one of his recent stories in my inbox recently. It was so good I immediately wanted to share it! I asked him if I might be able to use it as a guest blog post. His response was not simply a “yes” but rather “Yes, by all means! Let’s spread the ripples to make God as famous as possible.” Check out  Jack’s example below about praying for the long-term:

“Mandate 1, April 5, ’11, God, Prayer, or Coincidence?

“In 1983, a group of 40,000 Sudanese people called the Tira were listed on the Bibleless Peoples Prayer Project as not having even a single word of the Bible translated into their language. Today, twenty-eight years later, many Tira are Christians and read the Bible in their own language.

Here’s what happened:

  • In November of 1983, David and Ray, two American students signed up to pray for the Tira with the Bibleless Peoples Prayer Project.
  • In May of 1986, Jerry and Jan promised to pray for this group.
  • In March 1990, Jane and Margeanne committed themselves to pray.

 In August 1990, a report came to the Prayer Project organizers that a young Tira man, Avajani, was studying linguistics and Bible translation techniques. The organizers wrote to encourage him with the news that three teams were praying for his people group. They gave the names and the dates when they began to pray. Avajani’s response was astonishing!

Avajani told them he became a Christian in November 1983, the month David and Ray began to pray.

  • He was accepted for theological studies in May 1986, when Jerry and Jan started to pray.
  • He heard about courses in Bible translation and was accepted as a student in March 1990, when Jane and Margeanne started to pray.
  • A number of portions of the Bible were published during 1999-2001.

An atheist reading this sort of astonishing coincidence might well mutter to himself, “Hmm, if I didn’t know any better, I’d think that God was involved.”

 God is definitely at work on planet Earth, and He invites us to join Him. He moves some to pray, and some to do hands on service. He wants every person to hear about Him in the language they know best.

Here are some links to help us join God in His work:

http://www.ethnologue.org/show_language.asp?code=tic

http://www.wycliffe.org/Pray/BiblelessPeoplesPrayerProject.aspx

http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=5702833206 ”

For other writings by Jack Popjes, please check out The Mandate at  http://popjesthemandate.blogspot.com

Praying for the Long-Haul?!? I think so. I don’t want to miss out of being a part of God’s plan!

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