Lashon Hara- Power Outages caused by negative words

Lashon Hara – the malicious disseminating of damaging truths

The words of the mouth are deep waters (Prov. 18:4)! As surely as gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones (Prov. 16:24) the words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to the inmost parts (Prov. 18:8).

Lashon Hara is the Hebrew term to describe the malicious disseminating not so much of outright lies but of damaging truths. Whilst we are all familiar with the damage caused by the Accuser of the Brethren spreading outright lies and accusations, he often finds ways to inspire believers more subtly to fulfil his evil work. The Hebrew phrase lashon hara (Hebrew לשון הרע; “evil tongue”) is well known to those steeped in Judaism, and occurs when people tell basically true things about people but in order to make them appear in a bad light. Continue reading

World Watch: Pray for Teresa May and Angela Merkel

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Pray for Teresa May and her team as they grapple on a daily basis with a huge range of pressing issues in the months ahead, not least with matters pertaining to Brexit, and developing her relationships with numerous world leaders. There are going to be plenty of challenges in the days ahead for western leaders!

Pray too for the “three Brexiteers” Boris Johnson, David Davis and Liam Fox, that they will humble themselves to collaborate well together.

Remember, too, Angela Merkel. Just as Teresa May received a shock during the G20 conference when Japan warned that it might relocate its major enterprises away from the UK, Angela must have been shaken by the results of the election in her own region, in which she came in third, below the anti-migrant Alternative Party. It sounds rather like the Conservatives losing control of Surrey!

This article is one of several that highlight Angela Merkel’s evangelical faith, and how she has sought to harness Germany’s great strength to save, rather than to destroy.

 

World Watch: Cyber Threats

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One of the major issues Teresa and her team are grappling with is whether to go ahead with the nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point. This raises directly and indirectly an issue we have often highlighted for prayer: the immense threats that cyber attacks pose to civilised nations. You may well be aware of the concerns surrounding security in hosting Chinese nuclear plants on British soil. In case you missed them, this article serve to highlight the dilemmas Teresa May and team face. (There is nothing we can do to conceal the pictures that surround this text I’m afraid!)

We have continually encouraged people to keep cyber security issues at the forefront of their prayer agendas. Cyber attacks continue to cost the UK billions of pounds every year and they pose a major threat to both personal and national security.

The danger of espionage from dedicated hacking teams in countries such as Russia, China and Iran simply cannot be overstated.

Please see the button Cyber Warfare under categories on the right for previous articles on this them.

World Watch: Pray for Uzbekistan

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Uzbekistan, another extremely poor country, has shot to media prominence as a result of the death of its long term dictator, who preserved a great deal of the Soviet apparatus and oversaw one of the world’s most repressive regimes. Christians continue to face intense persecution in Uzbekistan, where everything is run by the security services. Barring a miraculous move of God there is unlikely to be any move towards greater openness – but we can always pray!

Pray for extreme grace and faithfulness for the believers, for fresh ways to reach the people, who are overwhelmingly Sunni Islam. By and large, apart from occasional rounds of sanctions, the West has had little to say about human rights violations and other oppressive practices of the Uzbek leadership.

See this testimony about a good number of Muslims coming to Christ in this brief video by CBN, especially from about 2:58.

Pray for the work of God in Uzbekistan

To get up to speed with what is going on in Uzbekistan generally, see this article.

Someone who has just talked with Secretary of Jewish Agency in Uzbekistan was very concerned about the situation there and said we have to be ready for new big wave of aliyah from Uzbekistan. Please remember this aspect too as we pray for Uzbekistan in this season of uncertainty.

UN-Uzbekistan.svg

 

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Wisdom and Insights from Mother Teresa

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In the week that saw Mother Teresa canonised, we have posted a few of her most inspiring quotes. She too had her serious doubters and detractors – but what have any of us done that even remotely compares with her? Praise the Lord that she did not allow even the strongest criticism to deter her from pursuing her vocation.

‘Stay where you are. Find your own Calcutta.
Find the sick, the suffering, and the lonely
right there in your own homes,
in your own families,
in your workplaces and in your schools…
You can find Calcutta all over the world,
if you have the eyes to see.’ Continue reading

Further on and Further in

How the Lord is longing to take us into a richer, deeper awareness of His presence that takes us beyond our narrow self-focus and adds meaning, colour and experience to every aspect of our lives. We have prepared something special along these lines for you in this edition, featuring the second part of the Idyll that I wrote recently, and which Justin Coldstream kindly arranged for instruments.

Sally Mowbray has excelled herself in creating perhaps the most sumptuous You Tube she has yet designed, highlighting something of the processes by which the Lord draws us closer to Himself. Thank you so much, Justin, Sally, Colin who recorded it, and all who the musicians who played it: Shirley Richards, Helen Rees, Catherine Muncey, Jo Garcia, Corinne Frost, Nicola Gerrard, Amy Roberts and Justin himself.

May the Lord draw us all further on and further in along our pilgrimage, and continue to bless and watch over us.

To watch without the words

 

Why we should be concerned about what is happening in Turkey

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Pray for Turkey

Serious abuses of human rights were occurring on a regular basis in Turkey, even before this latest clampdown.

It is obvious that President Erdogan is using the failed coup as a Reichstag moment to maximise his opportunity to clamp down in a most authoritarian way against all opposition. The forces impacted by this are enormous. Continue reading

Lot’s Syndrome

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Sharing the Lord’s Heart: Lot’s Syndrome

For I wrote to you out of great distress and anguish of heart and with many tears . . . (2 Cor. 2:4).

In the quote above Paul is expressing a pain that those who are closest to the Lord’s heart often experience. Peter writes of something similar when he describes Lot as “a righteous man who was tormented in his righteous soul by the wickedness he saw and heard every day” (2 Pet. 2:7-8). I have long since christened this “Lot’s Syndrome.” As we will see, this willingness to share in the Lord’s sorrow can lead us to identify much more fully with the Lord”s own heart.

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Pray for Turkey

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Turkey – home of so many of the great New Testament churches, but now with less than than 0.1% of the population being believers – a country in which the majority of provinces have no churches, no workers and no Christian witness of any sort.

In all we share here, there are major ramifications for us too in the West. Pray for the Holy Spirit to stir up such an unquenchable spiritual thirst in people that it will lead them to search for truth and then to find Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. Continue reading

Intensifying our prayer life: Sackcloth and the Day of Prayer and Fasting

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Join me in suffering as a loyal soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets entangled in civilian affairs, but rather tries to please his commanding officer . . . Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this (2 Tim. 2:3-4,7).

Reading through Hebrews 11, the word ‘better’ occurs three times and it has been standing out to me. Great heroes of the faith were concerned to make a better offering, to search for a better country (a heavenly one!) and to gain an even better resurrection (Heb. 11:4,16,35). In this article, I want to consider ways by which we might seek the Lord to the very level of our ability, and so fulfil His highest purposes for us. Continue reading