|November 13-20, 2017|
Mid-South Praises and Prayer Requests:
- Praise God for the many successful Speaker Tour and promotional events which have taken place throughout the states of Arkansas, Kentucky, and Tennessee.
- Thanksgiving to God for the solidifying of a logistics network 327 strong, and for the equipping and training which collection network team leader volunteers have received.
- Requesting the Lord to call a greater number of leader volunteers for the purpose of ministry multiplication and effectiveness.
- Effective training for all our Drop-Off Team Leaders, that attendance will be high and that the cause will be well communicated.
- Praying to God for the ultimate “win” of 850,000 “Gospel Opportunities” to be collected from the Mid-South Region this National Collection Week.
OCC NORTHEAST ARKANSAS Praises and Prayer Requests:
- Let us all praise God, believing in advance, that He will provide 11,550 Shoebox Gospel Opportunities from the 7 counties in Northeast Arkansas.
- Pray that He will do abundantly more than we can ever imagine to touch needy children around the world this season and that hearts are already being prepared with people packing shoeboxes, customs agents in receiving counties, in the TGJ teachers being called up to be trained this season, and all the precious children that will receive these gifts.
- Pray God will provide us a Drop-off Location in Clay County in 2018.
- Pray God will rise up volunteer leaders as coordinators of our OCC NEA team in 2018 and new team members for OCC NEA.
Baltics, Balkins & Central Europe: International Prayer Requests each country faces:
- Wisdom to recruit, select, lead, and develop new and/or transitioning volunteer leadership team members.
- Provision of resources and the person who leads this area so they are able to reach their God-sized goals for the current year.
Country Highlight - Slovakia
There is a woman with two children who has been visiting a small group at church for almost two years. Her husband was never interested in joining us. Just before the shoebox distribution, they realized that they needed new boots for their daughter. When their daughter opened her shoebox gift, she found a beautiful pair of boots that were exactly the size she needed. The father was shocked. He assumed that his wife had told them about their need and that they had added them to the box. When he learned no one had added anything, he was touched to find out that God is omniscient and takes care of us in very specific ways.
WEEK 1: November 1-7: Germany & Austria
- Praise God for five Connect conferences in the first half of the year where participants were able to hear and see more of the impact the project is making in children’s lives.
- Praise God for more and more Processing Site Leaders to accept the change to Central Processing after many months of casting the vision for volunteers to see and understand the need for change.
- Praise God for the great team of volunteers and staff of the Germany speaking world who are eager to reach as many children as possible with the love of God.
- Pray for all planning and preparations for our first Central Processing Center where we hope to process between 80,000-100,000 shoeboxes.
- Pray for all volunteers to be refreshed before another busy season.
WEEK 2: November 8-14: Poland
- Praise God for the first 1,000 children reported to graduate from TGJ and for the TGJ teachers.
- Praise God for new places with opened doors for the Gospel in our country.
- Praise God for the celebration events in our country with testimonies of God in action and His love.
- Pray for 240 Ministry partners to apply for Operation Christmas Child and TGJ during the new season.
WEEK 3: November 15-21: Romania
- Praise God for a newly started Senior Regional Leadership Team in Central Transylvania.
- Praise God for thousands of children who completed TGJ and for their teachers.
- Pray for the change of National Discipleship Coordinator and strength and wisdom for her to take responsibility over a very big project.
- Pray for the further development of the newly started NGO for OCC.
WEEK 4: November 22-31: Slovakia
- Praise God for all kids that completed TGJ.
- Praise God for all Ministry Partners and TGJ teachers who were able to invite more kids than usual.
- Pray for the new season in Slovakia. We need more children and teachers for TGJ.
- Pray that God will call more volunteers from MPs to the new regional teams that we want to create.
- Pray for unity in all our teams. Pray for finding suitable storage for the new season.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ…” Ephesians 1:3
Our new identity in Christ is the focus of the first three chapters of the book of Ephesians. In these chapters, the Apostle Paul describes in exciting detail all of the amazing power, privileges and promises that are now ours as born-again believers in Jesus. In fact, God’s provision for His children is so thorough that Paul tells us that “God…has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.” That means that everything we will ever need, God has already provided in Christ and it already has our name on it! Bible commentator Dr. John MacArthur states it this way, “God’s superabundant blessings belong to his children, by faith in Christ, so that what he has is theirs—including his righteousness, resources, privilege, position, and power.”
This passage tells us that these resources and blessings that belong to us are located in “heavenly places” meaning the spiritual realm where the throne of God exists. We access and lay hold of these resources and blessings through prayer. Prayer brings God glory because it shows that we believe He is good, generous and the giver of all good gifts. Prayer also grows us in dependence on God for everything we need. We must remember that one of the great weaknesses of God’s people throughout the Bible was a sinful desire to be independent of God; but, prayer increases our dependence on our generous Heavenly Father. Repeatedly coming to God in prayer to lay hold of the resources and blessings we need also teaches us the joy of abiding in His presence. We were created to enjoy uninterrupted fellowship with God. Time spent in prayer grows our joy in abiding in His presence. Through prayer God gets the glory and we get the good resources and blessings we need day to day.
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