Thursday, December 5, 2013

31 Days of Prayer: Praying for the loss of a great leader


South Africa has lost a true gem. Nelson Mandela who became an international icon for his fight against apartheid in South Africa and spent 27 years in prison for defending his cause and led South Africa into democracy as its president, died Dec. 5, 2013 in his home. Mandela was 95.

What I admire most about Mandela's life story is that no matter what, he did not give up the fight for what is right. He, like American Civil Rights icon Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. believed that "hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." I believe Mandela left a legacy of love covering the continent of Africa and I hope that everyone will embrace his legacy, learn from his life and strive to continue the fight for social justice, hope and peace.

We don't live in a perfect world and the reality is that sickness, death and disease will be here until Jesus comes. BUT that's no excuse not to brighten your corner of the world and bring joy to those around you, encouraging peace with your fellow humankind. God doesn't idly sit by and let injustice happen. He influences His people to make the world a better place, just like He used Mandela to change the story of South Africa for the better, God wants to use you and me to change the world for the better. So what exactly does the Creator of the Universe does require of us mere mortals? The answer is found in Micah 6:8, "to act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with your God."

Shall we pray?

Dear God,

Please be with the peacemakers in this world. Help us all to live in harmony with each other. Thank You for blessing our world with a humble, golden-heart leader like Nelson Mandela. Please be with the survivors in his family, help them to come to terms with this sad news. Send Your Comforter the Holy Spirit into their hearts and homes and fill their spirits with a peace that passes all understanding as they lay their family member to rest. 

Help the world to learn a lesson from Mandela's life and to be inspired to make this world a better place, to carry on the legacy of agape love, hope and peace that Mandela fought so hard for his entire life. And ultimately, my we be inspired by the life of Your son Jesus Christ whose legacy of agape love, hope and salvation for this world liberated us from the enemy's stranglehold of sin. May we remember that if we believe in You and accept Your Son as our Savior and live a life of faith in You then we will be saved. 

May those who are hurting have hope in knowing that Your Son will return to Earth to take His faithful followers home and eternity will begin a life free of pain, suffering and sin. Until then, may we continue to be inspired by the legacy of Your children on Earth like Mandela and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Ultimately may we be inspired to follow You, walk in faith and live up to what you require of us.

In Jesus' Name I pray,

Amen.

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