Yesterday, I received an email from someone saying that they no longer wanted to receive our prayer updates.
When I read this person’s email stating their disinterest, I confess that my heart stung. Granted, I don’t want anyone to receive our email updates who doesn’t want them. Yet, I had just sent out a prayer update about the the pain, struggle, economic hardship, and suffering that is occurring in Zimbabwe. This prayer update was not just about us – it was about the people of Zimbabwe that we love and cherish.
Zimbabwe is in need of our prayers.
The small nation of Zimbabwe doesn’t really make a huge splash on the internet news highway. On July 6, Zimbabwe’s people shut their schools, hospitals, banks, businesses, and trade completely down and left their city streets and roadways deserted, more attention was noted for a South African blade runner’s prison sentence than the fact that between 75-95% of the country downed their tools. And for the majority of Zimbabweans, they did it in a peaceful way in unity as part of the #thisflag movement.
Yes, there were violent clashes between protestors and police in various parts of the country. Yet, the central purpose behind these protests was honorable and just; to improve the lives of all Zimbabwean people and put an end to corruption, injustice, and poverty.
It is a tall, tall, tall order.
What Zimbabweans want for their nation is nothing less than what others in the world desire for their own countries.
There are so many devastatingly tragic events simultaneously occurring in the world that perhaps the person who doesn’t want to receive our updates any more, just can’t swallow one more painful gulp.
Terror, tragedy, corruption, mismanagement of funds, poverty, disease, mayhem, etc. etc. etc. are enough to slam us to the ground and leave us gasping for breath in remorse, sorrow, disgust, and shock.
How in the world do we go on in a world that seems to distrust, devalue and discount human life over and over and over again?
For me, I am desperate and left wanting for all people of this world to love and be loved.
I hunger for dignity and compassion – where people honor others as they would themselves.
I thirst for fountain waters of unquenchable hope that will refresh and restore us.
As a Christ follower, it is my faith that sustains me and strengthens me even in such terrible times.
Truly, only Christ can overcome my desperation, address and satisfy my hunger, and quench my thirst.
And He offers the same for the people of Zimbabwe and every nation on earth that are in the throes of despair, struggling in want, and in need of hope and peace.
Zechariah, the prophet proclaimed, “In that day, a fountain will be opened for the house of David and for the inhabitants of Jerusalem, for sin and impurity.” New International Version, Zechariah 13:1
Throughout Old Testament Scripture, God is often described as a fountain whose mercy and forgiveness flow in abundance into the arid, dry and desperate souls of His people. For fountain waters of God bubble up and flow continuously – without end – we only have to ask for them.
We need to call upon that hope.
We need to confess our misdeeds, guilt, and yes, sin.
We need to seek the tender mercies of God.
We need to open wide our hearts to drink in His peace and His assurances that are without end.
In Zechariah’s prophecy, it is the cleansing blood of Jesus that flows from this fountain. It is His Supply and nothing else that may meet us where we are, help us, cleanse us, and redeem us.
Nothing from our past, nothing from our present, nothing promised in our future can reform us of our pride and selfishness or provide the restitution that we seek from others.
Such hope, such strength, such love, such life are solely found in the restorative fountain waters of Jesus Christ.
I could allow my nose to get out of joint because someone doesn’t want to hear from me anymore – choosing to ignore the stories I tell about the missionary life we live in southern Africa. It would be easy to take offense at their alleged apathy. Yet, I am desirous of so much more than having one person’s interest and attention.
I write my prayer updates to bring to light what is happening in our part of the world into the hearts and minds of others so that they may seek the Lord on our friends’ behalf. I believe that it is in Christ alone that our needs will be met as we seek Him with all of our heart, with all of our strength and with all of our souls. Christ has the power to overcome prejudice, corruption, deceit, brutality, and injustice and more. Honestly, we do not. For it is Christ who broke us free from the slavery of sin and impurity.
He calls to us even now, “Let anyone who is thirsty, come to me and drink!” New International Version, John 7:37
Drink of the fountain of Christ and present the worlds’ needs before Him.
History is in the making in Zimbabwe and what is happening there is too important not to share with my friends and family. We will pray and seek our God for His generous waters of mercy, grace, forgiveness, and strength to flow into their thirsty souls to meet every need as they make their way forward in peace.
This not a time for indifference.
This is a time for prayer – for Zimbabwe.