Remember the Iraqi Christians...

So I've really been in my own bubble this week and when Matt asked me if I knew what was happening in Iraq, I was clueless. Then I was heart broken as he told me some details, then sadly perplexed as I realized we are here playing with puppies  {yes, puppies!!}

while others are being slaughtered for loving Jesus...as if this is a new thing - must it get SO bad to catch our attention? And I can't even begin to grasp the reality of the evil that's in these terrorists.  I just don't get it.

Anyway, I'm really just so ashamed I haven't always prayed more for the saints suffering around the world.  It's so easy to ignore when it's not in our own backyard.  It's like it all runs together, knowing that it happens, I just turn my eyes from it like there's always going to be suffering and martyrdom, and what can I really do here in my own little world?  

Is my faith really that shallow?  Do I just think it's going to happen anyway?  Do I not know God beckons us to pray for them? And that He wants to hear our prayers, and He will answer our prayers in His wisdom and sovereignty!? Do I not think it also includes them when I'm told to treat others the way I want to be treated?

Yesterday morning, praying and asking God what to do...half way around the world, I happened to flip open my Bible to Hebrews 13:3 (the 1st verse my eyes landed on). 

"Remember the prisoners, as though in prison WITH them, and those who are ill-treated, since you yourselves also are in the body." 

Seriously?  Yes, it just opened to that.  Actually, I had thrown it open and dropped it on the table as I jetted off to quiet the kids....and when I came back, I happened to look down to that verse.  How much more directly could God speak to me? 

I just hear Him telling me to REMEMBER.  Do not forget them.

Knowing I would forget, we decided to make reminders to put around the house....

simple, not cute or fancy....just simple, plain reminders to put up to help us think of them and pray.

and with the mindset of "remembering," it occurred to me....our children will look back and either not remember anything about times like this because we didn't really do anything except perhaps pray for them in our nightly bible study {which is better than nothing!}, OR they will remember because we made it a big deal....because it IS a big deal.  So, what will we do?  I wanted to make reminders, I want to remind them in whatever they are doing to be thankful for the peaceful place they live, so they can give thanks to the Lord and pray for the hurting people to be able to have peace in their hearts regardless of where they live.

I let the girls draw pictures and as I looked at them, I was amused at what they drew...sweet Adolyn, she sort of gets it.  Not sure why she drew a house, but it actually looked like a mountain with a house in it.  Sweetly, it reminds me to pray for them to be able to come off the mountain and have a new home. Then, she drew a little girl...reminding us to pray for the little kids to be able to play happily again.

Of course, we want to pray more serious things, too.  I just want to pray more.  We can't let ourselves neglect these hurting people. Yeah, we know to pray for them, but we forget so easily. We have to do whatever we need, to help ourselves remember to pray without ceasing. I feel God just telling me to remember.   

and don't even get me started on how this is all making me think about everybody else I could be praying for.  There's just SO MANY to be remembering....the hurting, the lost, the sick, the ill-treated....it just goes on and on.  It's easy to get overwhelmed and just turn away.  Of course, I can't bear the burdens of the whole world.  But, no wonder God tells us to PRAY WITHOUT CEASING!  There's just so stinkin' much to pray for, besides rejoicing always and praising the Lord!  Goodness, there's plenty for my mind to remember and think on.  I pray that I start choosing the right things instead of the rest of the junk this world throws at us.  and I can't even pretend like all this thinking didn't first lead to confession, because it sure enough did.  confession and repentance of my self-centered, shallow-faith heart.

Let's remember, friends!  Let's wake up and really remember!  and not even only them, who else are we forgetting?! are we even remembering to praise God and give Him thanks?! {you know I'm preaching to myself especially!}

and the verse today in my Bible reading app??

1 Peter 3:12,13 {and read the rest of the chapter with it}

"For the eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous, And His ears attend to their prayer, But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil." Who is there to harm you if you prove zealous for what is good?"  But, even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed.....

Take time to read God's truth, and think on it and remember these hurting people and PRAY.  It's what I would want others to do for me.  Wouldn't you?

What could happen if our faith was REAL and DEEP and we actually all prayed?  We may see miracles or there may just be miracles in the hearts, but I do believe there could be miracles!



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