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Micah Challenge Prayer & Reflection, July 6, 2007

July 5, 2007

Welcome! We hope you will enjoy using these reflections with us!

Reflection

In the last part of our Blow the Halftime Whistle prayer and reflection series, Steve Bradbury from Australia wonders how and what we can pray in the face of injustice, oppression and violence in the world that we experience ourselves or hear about.

\'Many people are deeply troubled by such evil, and those who are sensitive to the Spirit of God know the urge to pray. It can be then, right when our hearts and minds are dwelling on the unspeakable, that our own words grind to a halt. This is the time for the language of silence and sighs, letting God the Spirit take over.\'

Romans 8.26-27 tells us:

\'Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God\'s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don\'t know how or what to pray, it doesn\'t matter.

He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans.

He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God.\'

(The message)

As Steve observes:

\'Paul tells us that the Spirit will transform our inarticulate sighs into a conversation God longs for. What a wonderful reassurance. Time spent in the genuinely quiet prayer of this sort can never be wasted. In ways completely beyond my comprehension it serves the purposes of God.\'

Prayer

Let us pray:

§ Steve challenges us to pray the following prayer every day for a week or a month: “Let my heart be broken by the things that break the heart of God.” (by Bob Pierce)

§ We thank God for the creativity and hard work that has gone into planning and organising many Blow the halftime whistle activities for 07/07/07 this weekend and pray that God\'s name with be glorified by actions that encourage individuals, churches and politicians to act justly.

Let us pray especially for the following activities:

o Australia, Malawi, Rwanda: Various halftime sporting events around the country

o Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, Uruguay – Public church and youth events

o Bangladesh: The steering group will use 07/07/07 for prayer, fasting and a business meeting. On Sunday all Dhaka-based churches will be invited to celebrate and pray.

o Ghana: Micah Challenge and Blow the halftime whistle will be presented at the annual Baptist World Aid Forum in Accra by Les Fussel, the chair of Micah Challenge in Australia.

o Kenya: Various events over the week will culminate in a rally in Nairobi to mark 07/07/07 and whistles will be blown at 1pm.

o New Zealand: Andrew Dallaston, the coordinator of MC New Zealand writes:

\'We have planned two events. In Auckland we’re meeting at Eden Park (NZ’s most famous sports stadium) where we’ll be having songs, a haka, a brief address, a famous sportsman kicking goals as we list the MDGs and a mass whistle blowing at midday.

In Christchurch there will be young people running round the city all day blowing whistles. There will be a barbecue in Cathedral Square - the centre of Christchurch – with speakers, half time oranges, a photo petition presented to local MPs and all this will be followed by a concert from a local group called Satellite.\'

o Nigeria – Blow the halftime whistle events are stretching from 3-7 July in Jos and include a radio program where the MDGs and the halfway point are introduced; a legislative visit to the Plateau State House of Assembly; and a public lecture with the topic \' The Church and the Significance of “blow the half time whistle” \'.

o Peru – Music festival in Lima and activities in rural villages

o Philippines: Christians are challenged to:

1) Blow the whistle 7 times on July 7 at 7:00 a.m.

2) Pray for 7 minutes focusing on poverty alleviation and debt reduction

3) Talk to 7 friends and share about the MDGs

o Sierra Leone - Micah Challenge will host a symposium inviting stakeholders and the general public. The communiqué of the symposium will be publicized on radio and other media the following day.

o Switzerland (German speaking): Youth Music festival \'07 the gig\' including some workshops.

o Switzerland (French speaking): An 07/07/07 event is planned in front of the parliament building in Berne with more than 50 French speaking personalities and politicians expected to attend.

Meditate on the Statistics

As you spend time in prayer and reflection, you may like to take a moment to silently understand with your heart the focus statistic we include each week (see below). Our hope is that you will find this series of statistics a useful resource in preparing presentations.

Goal 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger

Target 1: Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people whose income is less than one dollar a day

\'The benefits of economic growth in the developing world have been unequally shared, both within and among countries. Between 1990 and 2004, the share of national consumption by the poorest fifth of the population in developing regions decreased from 4.6 to 3.9 per cent. Widening income inequality is of particular concern in Eastern Asia, where the share of consumption among the poorest people declined dramatically during this period. Still, inequality remains the highest in Latin America and the Caribbean and in sub-Saharan Africa, where the poorest fifth of the people account for only about 3 per cent of national consumption (or income).\'

Source; Millennium Development Goals Report 2007, United Nations July 2007

http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/pdf/mdg2007.pdf

Yours in Christ,

Regine and Michael

Please view all the Friday Prayer statistics we’ve used to date here

Please see a List of Prayer Reflections (excel file)

This email is also available in French and Spanish. Please contact Regine if you, or someone you know, would like to receive one of these versions (Regine.Nagel@micahchallenge.org).