Impacting Cities & Communities thru Prayer
A Community of Prayer Champions, Praying Churches, Prayed-for Communities
Our God has scatted peoples (diasporas) to set and reset the boundaries of the nations throughtout history (Acts 17:26). From the beginning of time God has moved peoples in accordance with divine will and his global purpose to fill the earth with the knowledge of who he is (Habakkuk 2:14). God desires that every people, nation, tribe and tongue hear the Gospel (2 Peter 3:9). One day they will (Matthew 24:14) and then we will gather for a cosmic worship service like none ever before it (Revelation 7:9). Diaspora, people who live outside their homeland, is one constant of history. God told the Israelites that they are to be well treated (Exodus 22:21). What if God was still scattering the nations and still expecting his people to respond in his loving kindness? What if...
Today, God has brought, and is bringing, the nations to the USA in increasing number. There are over 40 million immigrants in the USA today. What is different with this modern migration of the late 20th Century and early 21st Century is that many peoples are coming from places of the world that are "unreached" by the Gospel. There are hundreds of peoples groups from regions of the world untouched by the Gospel and unengaged by Evangelical churches.
Today, there are at 8 US cities with foreign born populations great than a million, and many smaller cities with growing diaspora populations. Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Tribal, Unreligious peoples by the hundreds of thousands or millions are now our "neighbors," living in our communities. How will we respond?
Do you know who is living in your city? How might you embrace these peoples with the love of Jesus? How is your church responding to the changing demographics of your city? How might a citywide movements to bless the nations among us get started?
A recent Wall Street Journal article reported that there are now 66,000 Saudi students in the USA. Do you have a university with Saudi students in your city or region? Annually, thousands of refugees come from many "unreached" places of our world - Somalia, Nepal, Bhutan. How many of these people are in your city or community? These are only two examples of the missional opportunity we have right now in our cities. There are hundreds more like these examples. But is the Church ready and prepare to respond. Indications are presently no. That is one thing we can pray for according to Luke 10:2.
At my local church we end 2012 with a New Year's Eve international multicultural prayer service. To begin 2013, I wrote a 20 day prayer guide called - "Live It - People who Live His Story" my church is praying through in January, that introduces the 20 largest diaspora people groups in North Texas. Our senior pastor will be preaching a message this Sunday, January 6th, that includes the demographics of the region to call the church to embrace our international neighbors. We are doing a lot of training for cross-cultural outreach, praying and thinking about how we might embrace the nations among us.
Serving with the Mission America Coalition, we recently launched through our Cities/Communities Ministries the CityReaching Diaspora Initiativeincluding a prayer mobilization resource called Ethnic Embrace USA to raise awareness about and mobilize the Church toward embracing the nations among us. On January 1st, we launched the USA People Group Prayer Project. We want to mobilize a harvest force in cities nationwide equipped to engage the diaspora peoples of their cities.
Share what's happening in your city. How can we serve your church or your city in mobilizing to reach the nations of your city?