I have the best of intentions.
I’ve backed them up with a nifty notebook:
divided into sections for the days of the week;
pages of personalized prayer requests;
an alphabetized list of missionaries (Can I make it through the list from memory at 3 a.m. on a wakeful night?);
even a few answers to prayer, dutifully recorded with the date.
I have the best of intentions, but how does one pray for the whole world,
for the advance of God’s kingdom in every nation and tribe and people and tongue?
Pray for the World: A New Prayer Resource from Operation World is a resource for this very purpose. Various editions of Operation World have been around since 1964, and our family has owned at least two of them. We’ve used them as references in teaching our children about people groups and world evangelization; we’ve used them to keep our church family informed about missions and the countries where our missionaries serve. Pray for the World is an abridged and paraphrased version of Operation World that is accessible and affordable for use by Christians all over the world. More concise, its 313 pages (compared with nearly 1,000 in Operation World 2010) feature simple English for non-native speakers and for ease of translation.
This is an exciting development, because I’m picturing more informed readers of missionary prayer letters, magazines and newspapers. I’m envisioning dining room tables and mini-vans, Sunday school classrooms and church sanctuaries where we’ll be growing our missions I.Q. with fun quiz questions and a methodical building of a heart for missions. I’m imagining people around the world who listen to the news or who watch international sporting events satisfying their curiosity about other lands and cultures with the stats and facts in Pray for the World:
Where in the world is Guinea-Bissau?
How do people in Tajikistan make a living?
Are they free to vote and to worship?
How can I pray for them?
From page 310 to the end of the book, a Daily Prayer Calendar invites readers to join the huge concert of prayer around the world for each specific country.
Rejoicing together in answered prayer, sharing burdens together — this is the work and the privilege of the world-wide body of Christ with our eyes on the fulfillment of His Great Commission and our hearts longing for the glory of God to be revealed.
Parents of younger children will be happy to know that Operation World has an edition designed to engage younger children in learning about and praying for the world. Windows on the World is an A-Z collection of brightly illustrated and winsomely presented data and prayer challenges for kids. We used it with all four of our boys in homeschool and family devotions.
This book was provided by InterVarsity Press in exchange for my review. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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