Episode 443

Serve Tour Athens Volunteers Elevate, U.S. Struggles to Receive Refugees & How to Spend More Time in Prayer

Sep 25, 2023

Ever-rising numbers of refugees and migrants, a smaller than 1 percent evangelical population and recent fires and floodings make Athens, Greece, a city ripe for Gospel outreach through compassion ministry. World Relief and Open Doors U.S. report that 1 in 7 Christians worldwide suffer persecution or discrimination. And, In a piece on prayer in the Baptist Press Toolbox, Kie Bowman writes, ‘According to the Harvard Business Review, your routines and habits account for about half of your actions each day.

Transcript

Ever-rising numbers of refugees and migrants, a smaller than 1 percent evangelical population and recent fires and floodings make Athens, Greece, a city ripe for Gospel outreach through compassion ministry. On September 8-16, more than 65 Serve Tour Volunteers from 13 churches joined local Greek churches to bring physical help and Gospel hope to a diverse city.

Projects ranged from painting walls at a future community center, to distributing school supplies in underserved neighborhoods, to cleaning up low-income areas. Each project helped local churches take their ministry outside of their walls and establish more influence and credibility within their neighborhoods.

Greece’s unique geographical location makes it a hub of various people groups, allowing Send Relief volunteers to minister to Greeks, North Africans, Ukrainians and the Romani people during their week in Athens.
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World Relief and Open Doors U.S. report that 1 in 7 Christians worldwide suffer persecution or discrimination. The numbers coincide with a 70 percent decrease since 2016 in the number of Christians refugees resettled in the U.S. from the top 50 countries persecuting Christians.

More than 360 million Christians face high levels of persecution and discrimination globally. By the end of last year, an estimated 108 million people had been forcibly displaced globally. The U.S. resettled 28,118 Christian refugees in 2015, a number that dropped to 9,528 in 2022. In 2020, at its lowest point in the study period, only 5,390 persecuted Christians were accepted here.

The full report is available at World Relief.org.
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Good News for Today is sponsored by The Voice of the Martyrs
Good News for Today is made possible through our friends at The Voice of the Martyrs, a nonprofit organization that serves persecuted Christians around the world. Founded in 1967 by Richard and Sabina Wurmbrand, VOM is dedicated to inspiring believers to deepen their commitment to Christ and to fulfill His Great Commission — no matter the cost. Find out more and sign up for their free monthly magazine at vom.org/goodnews.
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In a piece on prayer in the Baptist Press Toolbox, Kie Bowman writes, ‘According to the Harvard Business Review, your routines and habits account for about half of your actions each day.

Praying more is not an occasional event. Instead, it begins with developing the routine of meeting with God. Scripture teaches that prayer is a daily event. The psalmist in Psalm 5:2-3 said that the Lord heard his voice “in the morning” (v.3) when his daily prayers (v.2) and sacrifices occurred (Psalm 5:3).

In the most famous prayer in history Jesus taught us to pray “Give us this day our daily bread” (Matthew 6:11). Clearly, Jesus expects us to pray every day.

So, to pray more, put God on your daily calendar. Determine a starting and an ending time just like any other appointment. Even if you add only 15 minutes a day, something will likely have to change in your current schedule in order to make room for your new daily prayer appointment.

You can read the full piece and learn more about our daily emails at Baptist Press.com.

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