Daily Topic for August 18, 2010
Prayer is an essential part of God’s plan to accomplish His will on earth. We cannot always understand just why and how prayer works. But Scripture assures us that prayer is necessary both to us and to the accomplishment of God’s work in the world. Powerful, effective prayer has a goal (the revealed character and will of God) and a promise (the assurance of God). When we pray in God’s will, according to God’s promises, then our prayer is powerful and effective.
Pray that peoples like the Sharcrops, who use “prayer flags” to impersonal spirit beings will soon understand what they are missing by not praying to their Creator.
Like the Drukpas, the Sharcrops live in the world’s only Buddhist kingdom, the Kingdom of Bhutan. Numbering some 370,000 persons, they are the dominant people of that mountain kingdom. Bhutan is now opening itself up to Western tourism and business.
Satellite television, however, is banned out of fear that Western culture will damage traditional Bhutanese society and religion.
Bhutan is more open to nearby India than it is to the West. A road now links India and Bhutan. Some Sharcrops are learning Hindi and Assamese in order to do business in India. Bhutan sells electricity to India, even though rural Bhutanese need electricity.
Traditionally, a slash-and-burn dry-rice farming people, the Sharcrops are increasingly settling into villages, each of which has its own god of the soils and household spirits to appease. There may be a monastery in town with prayer wheels and prayer flags. Pigs, goats, and cattle serve as food and sacrifices. Sharcrops see Buddhism as the only way to break the cycle of reincarnation.
Pray that Sharcrops will find spiritual cleansing through the blood of Jesus instead of the blood of sacrificial animals. Pray that Jesus takes authority over spiritual powers and reveals Himself to them in visions and dreams.
Pray the few local churches will be strong in faith and outreach. Pray Assamese and Hindi-speaking Christians will win Sharcrop traders, travelers and laborers in India who will take their new faith to their extended families in Bhutan.