Please join Youth for Christ prayer initiative from 26 Feb to 5 April. Barbara and Norman last week contributed a devotion and prayer points on Indigenous youth – https://www.yfc.org.au/40daysprayer
By Barbara and Norman Miller,
Founders of the Centre for International Reconciliation and Peace, Pastors of Tabernacle of David, Cairns
Read: Proverbs 20:19, Ezekiel 37:10-12, Joel 2:28, Jeremiah 29:11
Lost can mean not saved; lost for eternity. It can also mean that you do not know who you are or what you could achieve. Maybe not even what you want. It can mean falling through the cracks of society – lost to mainstream community life. Not even a statistic. It could mean lost in a haze of confusion, alcohol, drugs or mental health issues.
Proverbs 20:19 tells us “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keeps the law, happy is he.” Someone who does not have a vision or picture of the future, can’t plan towards it. He wanders aimless and can’t reach the target because he can’t picture or articulate the target or even believe that he could attain it anyway. Self-belief is part of the problem. Setting a goal and working towards its attainment seems impossible. It’s hard even to imagine such a thing. People can slowly die within and lose hope. There is nothing to live for. Nothing to energise them. Nothing worth getting up for in the morning. Nothing to look forward to or work for. There are no milestones on the way to the goal to bring happiness or satisfaction. We need a godly vision for the future. The Lord wants to pour out His spirit so our sons prophecy and our young men see visions (Joel 2:28)
While the Lord loves us for who we are, not what we achieve, we love to do His will. But if we don’t know Him, how do we know to do His will? The first prayer for Indigenous lost boys or youth is for them to have salvation, to experience the love and forgiveness of God. Some come from loving homes and some don’t. They need to become a new creation – the old has gone and the new has come.
While there are many Indigenous boys and youth who are happy, healthy, come from good functioning homes and are achieving well at school or in jobs, there are those who are lost.
Their hope is dried up. Ezekiel 37:10-12 says “So I prophesied as He had commanded me, and the breath entered them, and they came to life and stood on their feet—a vast army. Then He said to me, ‘Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. Look, they are saying, Our bones are dried up, and our hope has perished; we are cut off.’ Therefore prophesy and tell them that this is what the Lord GOD says: ‘O My people, I will open your graves and bring you up from them, and I will bring you back to the land of Israel….”
We need to pray for and prophesy to the vast army of young Indigenous men and boys who feel that they have lost all hope, that they are cut off from participating in Australian society in any meaningful way, that they are perishing. Even their bones or health suffer because of the despair that grips them, draining the life from them. The hopelessness can lead to depression, the depression can lead to substance abuse to dull the pain, and the depression can lead to suicide. They are drowning in pain and we need to throw them a lifeline. That lifeline is the love and forgiveness of Jesus. We need to pray and prophesy that they will be revived, come to life, that their hope will be renewed, that they will receive the Lord and receive a fresh vision and fresh hope for the future. This army of Indigenous young men on fire for God could bring our whole nation of Australia into revival. God has plans for them and wants to prosper them and give them a future and a hope. (Jer 29:11)
- For Indigenous lost boys/young men – Salvation, good parental and family role models, a good Christian fellowship to be part of, mentoring in the Christian faith and mates that are Christians so there is good peer influence. That God would pour out His Spirit on them and give them visions and prophecies.
- That Indigenous youth would desire holiness, consecration, purity and devotion to God similar to desiring a Nazirite anointing.
- That Indigenous youth would have a vision for the future and hope that they could attain it. That they would believe God has plans to prosper them and give them a future and hope. That anxiety, depression, hopelessness and suicide would be defeated.
- That Indigenous youth would feel a sense of empowerment (as Christians moving in the power of the Holy Spirit) and not feel powerless and that they are victims. That a generation of godly Indigenous youth leaders rise up.
- That racism and stereotyping of Indigenous people would not occur and that Indigenous youth would develop the resilience to cope with it and with obstacles and difficulties in life.
- That Indigenous youth have access to mental health, NDIS and other health services even in remote areas.
- That mothers would have good health care before and after giving birth and would not drink alcohol while pregnant causing foetal alcohol syndrome and brain damage to their children.
- That families would function well and be happy. That family violence would be reduced so that Indigenous youth do not experience or witness family violence or be sexually, physically or emotionally abused.
- That Indigenous youth have access to wholesome recreational activities and don’t get bored and try chroming, drugs, alcohol, pornography, sexual promiscuity or crime to be entertained.
- That the many Indigenous boys and young men who are healthy, happy and doing well at school or in jobs receive the encouragement and opportunities they need and their achievements are recognized.
- Norman and Barbara are prepared to mentor 12 Indigenous Christian youth. Please pray that those they are meant to mentor come forward and wish to be mentored.
- That the Closing the Gap Program would be successful in eradicating Indigenous disadvantage and poverty.
- That Indigenous youth would have similar outcomes to the rest of the population re health, education, employment, income and life expectancy.
- For Indigenous people, only three of the seven Closing the Gap targets set in 2008 were on track to be met in 2018.
- The target to halve the gap in child mortality by 2018 is on track.
- The target to have 95 per cent of all Indigenous four-year-olds enrolled in early childhood education by 2025 is on track.
- The target to close the gap in school attendance by 2018 is not on track.
- The target to halve the gap in reading and numeracy by 2018 is not on track.
- The target to halve the gap in Year 12 attainment by 2020 is on track.
- The target to halve the gap in employment by 2018 is not on track.
- The target to close the gap in life expectancy by 2031 is not on track.
Download PDF Version:
Prayer and Fasting for Indigenous Youth by Barbara Miller