Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Day 4 - A Spiritually Needy Land

Taken from La Fontana Zach and Naomi's Blog
Verses of the day: “How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” – Romans 10:14&15
“At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ…” – Colossians 4:3
Reading of the day: Isaiah 55:1-8
Thoughts for the prayer of the day: According to the CIA World Fact Book 2010,” Persistent problems [in Italy] include illegal immigration, organized crime, corruption, high unemployment, sluggish economic growth, and the low incomes and technical standards of southern Italy compared with the prosperous north.”
However, there is a much greater need.  Less than 1% of all Italians have a saving relationship with Jesus Christ.  This means that over 99% of the people of Italy are on a road that leads to eternal torment and separation from God mostly because they have no opportunity to hear the Gospel message.
There is hope for Italy’s deep spiritual need.  The Lord is reaching out His hands, crying “Come, all you who are thirsty…Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy?” His plan is to use His servant missionaries to carry the message.  Please pray and ask the Lord of the harvest for missionaries to be sent to this spiritually dry and weary land (Luke 10:2).

If you have not looked at Isaiah 55 as it is presented in The Message I think it sums up beautifully this passage:

  1-5 "Hey there! All who are thirsty,
   come to the water!
Are you penniless?
   Come anyway—buy and eat!
Come, buy your drinks, buy wine and milk.
   Buy without money—everything's free!
Why do you spend your money on junk food,
   your hard-earned cash on cotton candy?
Listen to me, listen well: Eat only the best,
   fill yourself with only the finest.
Pay attention, come close now,
   listen carefully to my life-giving, life-nourishing words.
I'm making a lasting covenant commitment with you,
   the same that I made with David: sure, solid, enduring love.
I set him up as a witness to the nations,
   made him a prince and leader of the nations,
And now I'm doing it to you:
   You'll summon nations you've never heard of,
and nations who've never heard of you
   will come running to you
Because of me, your God,
   because The Holy of Israel has honored you."
 6-7Seek God while he's here to be found,
   pray to him while he's close at hand.
Let the wicked abandon their way of life
   and the evil their way of thinking.
Let them come back to God, who is merciful,
   come back to our God, who is lavish with forgiveness.
 8-11"I don't think the way you think.
   The way you work isn't the way I work."
         God's Decree.

I especially am drawn right now to the highlighted portion.  As I think about all the people from all the nations that God is bringing across our path here in Roma.  Just like the passage says, "you'll summon nations you've never heard of and nations who've never heard of you will come running to you..."  While I cannot say they have come "running"  I am constantly amazed at the mix of nations that have been coming into my circle of friends, indeed from nations I know not.  I am excited to see what God has planned, to discover what He is thinking and how He will work here in Roma. 

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