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I set out to write a prayer for those caught in the grip of icy, numbing despondency, but when I came to revise it this morning, it turned into a cry on behalf of people who are seeking asylum: for those who are being evicted from the insanitary Jungle at Calais, many of whom are reluctant and afraid to accept the provision being made for them and yet unable to reach British shores.

But I have also been greatly burdened for the plight of multitudes of Pakistani Christians who have crossed the border into Thailand to escape the most appalling sufferings in their home country, and are seeking asylum there only to end up being treated there as if they are criminals – often being separated from their families and locked up in unbearable conditions.

There is at least an international outcry concerning the situation Calais; whereas much less was known about the situation in Thailand until Chris Rogers presented a truly heartbreaking account in Our World on BBC News concerning the plight of these Pakistani Christians. Please take time to watch and listen to these timely and courageous reports:

www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-35654804

www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b072sbqr/our-world-thailands-asylum-crackdown

The incredibly emotive music that accompanies it is the second part of a piece by George Butterworth that we recorded at The House of the Open Door.

Pounding thoughts and desperate needs

Jesus, come with your bailing power to those who are caught in the swirling eddies of an abyss of despair.

Restore the lungs of those who are gasping for air, in danger of drowning beneath gallons of dark spewey waters.

Caught in the dragnet of thoughts that batter hearts and minds in an ever pounding shower of deep regrets. “If only such and such hadn’t happened, or something else had.”

Look once and all you see is the shredded timbers of your hopes and dreams;

Look twice and it even seems that the Captain of your soul has loosened His grip and abandoned ship;

But dare to look thrice and see Him lashed to the mast, and know you do not suffer alone.

Lord, let your kiss of life raise them up and bid them dare to believe their future is not submerged beneath these subsuming waves, or their souls in thrall to continual squalls. Reclaim many beyond the wreckage; and breathe new hope to cope another day.

Come to their aid now in the time of Your favour. Now, when they need you most!

Call to their spirits.

Cut through the helplessness, fatigue and anger so that they become one in spirit with You. (1 Cor. 6:17)

May they sing of Your strength in the morning and of Your love in the evening, for You are their fortress, their refuge in this time of trouble. (Psalm 59:16)

Make your call permanent so that they will not come to ruin but will be given a very great welcome into the Kingdom of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ – a Kingdom that will never end.

So we declare out loud these words: ‘It’s no longer they who live but Christ who lives in them.’ (Galatians 2:20; Galatians 3:27; Colossians 3:1)