Day 8: Two-Tenths of 1 Percent

Bosnia-Herzegovina is a beautiful country where the hilly landscape is dotted with picturesque mountain villages. Ten years ago, in one of those villages, three Muslim women began to meet together in secret. They would log on to the internet and read the Bible together.

Over time, they became attracted to the person of Jesus Christ. Desperate to know more about him, they mustered the courage to drive from their mountain village, where there was no church, to the town of Mostar, 45 minutes away.

They searched for a pastor there, one who was rumored to know Jesus. Finding him, they asked questions and listened as he told them about Jesus. They responded enthusiastically, “He’s the one we want to meet!”

Today they belong to Christ. In a land where less than two-tenths of 1 percent know the Lord, God is at work. Right now, The Gospel Coalition is drawing together pastors throughout the country in a united effort to bring the gospel to Bosnians and others throughout the Balkans.

Ways to pray:

  1. Praise God for the miraculous salvation of men and women all over the world, particularly in countries with little access to the gospel
  2. For the growth of the church in Bosnia and the Balkans, so that many others might know and preach Christ in the region
  3. For the faithful pastors in small communities, that they might know their work is not in vain

Now those who were scattered went about preaching the word. . . . So there was much joy in that city. Acts 8:4, 8


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Day 7: True Gospel in the Middle East

Over the last 10 years, Christian minorities in Egypt and the Middle East have endured the social and political uncertainty that followed the so-called Arab Spring. From one perspective, there isn’t a more relevant time than this for the gospel to flourish, particularly when besieged Christians and non-Christians seek God’s mercy and forgiveness offered in the crucified Savior.

In reality, however, the response of many hasn’t been repentance. Deceived by prosperity preachers, many have lost their confidence in God’s Word and have fallen prey to other gospels.

God is always sovereign, and he is at work among the growing minority who are still faithful to his Word and who live their life in a manner worthy of the good news of Jesus Christ. As surprising as it’s been to see a therapeutic and prosperity gospel in the Middle East, every week we hear testimonies of people engaging the truths of the biblical gospel and believing the Jesus of the Holy Scriptures.

Ways to Pray:

  1. Thank God for faithful evangelical leaders who proclaim the true gospel and confront false teachers
  2. For unity in truth and love among evangelicals from different denominations as they face different challenges, since tribalism is a problem in the church in the Middle East
  3. For the planting of healthy local churches in which the gospel is made visible to the wider community

Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul. Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation. 1 Peter 2:11–12


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Day 6: Let No One Despise Ugandan Youth

Uganda is one of the youngest countries in the world. Three-quarters of the population is younger than 30, while only 4.6 percent of the population is older than 60. The average age in Uganda is 15.

These young people are willing to sail across the Mediterranean Sea to find jobs in Europe or travel to the Arab world as domestic workers. Some join terrorist groups like Al-Shabaab and Boko Haram. But others are planting churches, leading congregations, and reaching the unreached. The growth of the African church is happening among young people.

With its boldness and energy, Uganda’s youthful population is an asset, an opportunity for the church to transform broken society for generations to come. Can you imagine how this country and continent could change if these young men and women are passionate for Christ and are trained in the truths of Scripture and the gospel of grace? Oh Lord, may it be so!

Ways to pray:

  1. Praise to the Lord for the strength of the young Christians in Uganda and Africa
  2. For deep spiritual growth in young people through discipleship
  3. For the transformation of the young people in Africa to a mission force into the rest of the world

Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. 1 Timothy 4:12


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Day 5: Christianity Grows in Any Soil

Cambodia had a population of 7.5 million when Pol Pot came to power in 1975. Four years later, his Khmer Rouge had killed an estimated 2 million people, most notoriously in “killing fields”—where so many bodies were piled into mass graves that clothing and bones still emerge from the dirt after a heavy rain. Although the Vietnamese invaded Cambodia in 1979, toppling the Khmer Rouge, the aftermath has not been easy.

But as the population has grown, so has Christianity. Over the last 30 years, in a country that knows the cost of manmade utopian efforts, the number of Protestants has jumped from 2,000 to more than 300,000.

Missionary J. D. Crowley works in the northeastern part of the country. Along with other missionaries, he’s seen 3,000 people come to Christ and 70 churches planted since 1994. In the last few years, the training at the local Bible school has been given over to indigenous pastors and funded by the local churches. “When we can catch our breath,” Crowley said, “we just shake our heads and think what a privilege it has been to watch God do what he’s done up here.”

Ways to pray:

  1. Praise for the new birth of thousands of Cambodian Christians
  2. For those who have not yet heard and believed in Jesus
  3. For new leaders to continue to be raised up and trained well

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Galatians 6:9


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