By Matt Kumar
Today we join with YWAM Barcelona in praying for their city, their home, and people.
In the midst of the recent terror attacks we've seen across European cities, the ongoing devastation being experienced in the Middle East, and even the tragedies we're facing in the U.S, "pray for______" hashtags can begin to feel monotonous and empty. As these truly sad events hit our news and social media streams, the offer for prayer has become the polite response to show those hurting, those in need, people undeserving of the injustices dealt to them, that they are seen, and that we care. The heart of these actions are true and good, but often the truth of the matter is lost. We offer prayer as a consolation prize in feeling unable, as though it is merely better than nothing. If we're being honest, it can become easy to feel helpless and even hopeless.
But the prayers we offer up are worth so much more than we'll ever know because we have a God who is good(Psalm 119v68).
He is good and He is compassionate. He listens when we speak (1 John 5v14), His tears fall as ours do at the loss of life (John 11v35), His heart breaks as He sees His creation broken (Ezekiel 18v31-32). Know that your words, your prayers, your heart and soul joining with God while facing great darkness, these are not hopeless acts. No, there's power in prayer, so let's pray. Let's pray, and keep on "praying without ceasing" as Paul says in 1 Thessalonians 5v17. Let's pray confidently, knowing that we're praying to our Savior and Lord who isn't unfamiliar with death and darkness, but rather experienced it and overcame it (John 1v5).
Let's pray thanks for the good, healing for those hurting, peace for those fearful, and love for the lonely.
Let's seek to proclaim good news to the poor, freedom for captives, to minister to the brokenhearted, and to release prisoners from darkness. Let's seek to comfort all who mourn, provide for those who grieve, and to bestow crowns of beauty in place of ashes, joy in place of mourning, praise and not spirits of despair (Isaiah 61v1-3). Let's pursue this in our hearts with compassion, with our hands in action, and on our knees in prayer.
"True prayer is neither a mere mental exercise nor a vocal performance. It is far deeper than that - it is spiritual transaction with the Creator of Heaven and Earth." Charles Spurgeon
And to you Barcelona, know that you are not alone. We stand with you, we hurt with you, grieve with you, fight for love with you, hope with you, and we pray with you.