Finding hope amid ashes in Australia

by Tony O. Jegede last modified 07 January 2020 07:30 PM
Finding hope amid ashes in Australia

A farm devastated by the fire in Australia. Photo: Chris Wright/Climate Tracker

07 January 2020

As you’ve undoubtedly seen on the news in recent weeks, our beautiful country of Australia is suffering under a terrible fire season this summer. People are suffering and look in awe at the terror of the fires, and they live in the bondage of fear.

Christian leaders across the nation and their congregations and communities are praying and fasting, standing as one as we give our support, prayers and hope in Christ for our nation to put its trust in the Lord and not on material things that can be consumed by natural disaster.

We are praying that we as a nation would look to God in our time of need, knowing that "all things work together for good to them that love Christ Jesus and to those who are called by His name” (Romans 8:28). We pray for protection and aid for our firefighters. We pray for those devastated by the fires. We pray that the dangerous fire conditions would instead turn to soaking rain across the continent. We pray that Aussies would hear the gospel in these times of despair, turning to Christ Jesus who alone can give beauty in place of ashes. We pray that Jesus, who is truly the consuming fire, will turn the fire of destruction to the fire of praise, glory and revival in Daniel 3. We pray that Jesus will turn this destructive fire into revival in Australia, that many would learn to trust in Him and Him alone, not in houses, wealth or any earthly thing that can’t stand the test of time. It is heartbreaking to see the labour of families for two, three or four decades go down the drain in a matter of minutes.

The church still assures hope in Christ Jesus, as these natural disasters have been predicted in the scriptures, but there is still hope only if we can trust Jesus and not our experience or wealth. The world can take anything and everything from us, but can't take Jesus from anyone who is named by the name of the Lord. Trust in Jesus, not earthly things (Job 31:24- 28).

The Lord Jesus is the  only one who can truly build, keep, protect, sustain and preserve (Psalms 127:1-2).

We pray and continue to pray that the government and people of Australia would dwell continuously in the shelter of the most high God and abide under the shadow of the Almighty (Psalms 91:1) knowing that He is the only one who has a true and lasting solution to this challenge.

May His name be praised in all this, that we may say "yet in all these challenges, we are more than Conquerors, through Christ who loves us” (Romans 8:37).

We pray the good Lord God of mercy to show the land and the people of Australia His compassion and release rain upon the land, mostly in the areas that are desperately in need of it to reduce the temperatures that easily empower the fire outbreak.

The church at this time can only proffer temporary solutions of shelters and other aids, but Jesus provides the permanent solution of an everlasting home which natural disaster cannot destroy, a home that gives the church hope, even those whose properties have been destroyed.

We know that we may lose every material thing, but our hope for the kingdom of God that experiences no disaster gives us strength to move on in Christ Jesus and still glorify God in the midst of the fire.

Disclaimer

The impressions, hopes and ideas expressed in this blog are the contributions of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or policies of the World Council of Churches.

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