For a Christian to pray for a city or an area, it helps to know what God’s original plan is for that place, and to pray that into being. It also gives you an indication of the counter plan of our spiritual enemy, and of the type of spiritual challenges that will be characteristic of that place.
The Hebrew meaning of the name Jerusalem is about peace and safety. In the light of God’s purpose for Jerusalem, Marelize discusses king David’s description of it, and also Jesus’ love for the city and its people groups, and why those not living in Jerusalem, should pray for it.
In a time of many upheavals, Marelize is encouraging us to hold on to God, or as it is describes in Afrikaans ‘om vas te byt’, even when the fulfilment of His long-ago-promises looks impossible, like the fulfillment of His promise of a great harvest amongst the nations, or the promise of a change in your marriage or in your child’s life.
For the fulfilment of the promise of a great harvest of people coming to God, Jesus commands us to pray that God will send out, or thrust out labourers or harvesters into His harvest field. If we neglect in doing that we can not expect a harvest of people coming into His kingdom.
Marelize gives guidelines from Heb.10:23 in how we need to hold onto the hope that we have in Him, when we are in a challenging time frame.
Many Christians in South Africa had united in prayer on the 8th May, when it was a day set aside for a renewed connection with ancestors who’d passed away, to stand in the gap and ask God’s forgiveness and to fill the atmosphere with praises to God.
Yet, Christians can’t relax now after this day, because things were stirred up in the spirit realm. We thus need the zeal, or the fire and passion of the Lord in us, to keep on establishing His presence and His plans over South Africa.
Marelize shares about the zeal of the Lord, which is usually mentioned in the Bible when God is revealed as the Lord of the Hosts, a description of Him when He is in warfare, and how it relates to the Christian’s armor, as a cloak, to ensure that we would be the winning warriors for Him where He has placed us.
On the 8th of May in South Africa, some leaders in the nation have declared it to be a day to reconnect with the forefathers who had passed away. As this is not in line with the word of God, what will be the right thing to do for us as Christians? Besides the various prayer guidelines available, Marelize shares about seeking God for His original plan for that day. By looking at what happened in history on that day and how God intervened, helps us to find God’s original plan and to pray towards the fulfilment of His plan.
This day is happening in a time frame in which South Africa is still in lock down. After a year in lockdown, ways of doing things have changed. Many people got used to doing everything from home. The result is that many of us have become couch potatoes, because it feels like just too much effort to dress up to leave the house.
Marelize uses Nehemiah as example, who had a very comfortable position, as cupbearer to the king in exile. While being in comfort, he heard about his people in distress and the state of Jerusalem. He was so touched that he started praying. The way in which he prayed in Nehemiah 1 is a good example of how to start praying for the nation at this time. His action of leaving his comfortable job as wine server to the king, to go to Jerusalem to motivate his fellow brothers, and building the wall, is such an example for us at this time.
Let us get up from our couch, to fight as the boxer who is putting his punches where it is effective to overcome the plans of the Enemy, so that God’s plans will prevail.