Top ten prayer requests for Ukraine and Russia

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When I get aggravated about rising gas prices, inflated grocery costs, and other inconveniences stemming from the Russia/Ukraine conflict, I remind myself, “At least I know where my next meal is coming from, and I have a warm bed to sleep in.”

We need to pray for these people and for God to intervene in this war.

People around the world are rallying around Ukraine. Four organizations in Peachtree City came together recently to show support for Ukraine and her citizens. The Peachtree City Running Club, the Tri-PTC Triathlon Club, Multisport Performance, and Country Fried Creative sponsored a run/walk around Lake Peachtree. Two of the participants, Ukrainians Yana and Igor, live in Peachtree City. Around 50 people rallied, walked, and donated over $1,000 to Globalgiving.org for Ukraine refugees.

Gus Porter, WGN Flag and Decorating Company of Chicago, specializing in handmade flags, told NBC’s The Today Show, “I’ve sold more Ukraine in these past two weeks than probably we have in the 106 years we’ve been in business.”

Southern Baptists stepped to the forefront, also. Send Relief, a collaboration between their North American missions agency and their International Missions Board, responds to natural disasters, refugee needs, and other crises. Representatives meet refugees at train stations and bus stops as they arrive and start ministering immediately.

Send Relief President Bryant Wright said, “Since the invasion, we have and will continue to expand our efforts within the region. We’re thankful for the financial support and encourage everyone to keep praying for the people of Ukraine as they look for safety and help.

“Send Relief is providing food, shelter, basic but critical supplies, and most importantly, the hope of the gospel.”

Churches in both Russia and Ukraine have been impacted, as have two key seminaries. The Moscow Seminary, led by president Sasha Tsutserov, sent an urgent email March 1: “Please do not associate the Moscow Seminary with the Ukraine/Russia conflict. The seminary is not the guilty party. It did not take over Crimea. It did not occupy Ukraine. The seminary only proclaims the gospel and advances the Kingdom in both Russia and Ukraine.”

He shared the seminary has 21 Ukrainian citizens and 108 ethnic Ukrainians among its 554 students. The seminary continues to function.

However, the Ukrainian Baptist Theological Seminary in Lviv, under the presidency of Yaroslav Pyzh, shifted into crisis mode when the invasion hit. Lviv is 600 miles west of the capitol city of Kyiv. Thousands of refugees have been streaming through Lviv, about 40 miles east of the Polish border, as they leave the country.

On the first day of attack, classes were in session and students from the Eastern part of Ukraine could not return home. Then the refugees started pouring in. The seminary staff converted three buildings into makeshift dormitories with mattresses and pillows and have offices ready to convert if necessary.

Pyzh said initially two waves of refugees came through seeking aid. Those who came in the first day of the war were in “fairly reasonable emotional condition” while the second day brought people who were “in very bad condition … they were scared.”

Ukrainian churches cannot meet now but are responding with prayer and collecting food and clothing to assist the refugees, who often show up with only the clothes on their backs.

“We need a miracle,” Pyzh stated.

Adam Coker teaches history and Christian studies at Brewton-Parker College in Mount Vernon, Georgia. He and his wife served sixteen years in Russia as International Mission Board missionaries. He stays in touch with many friends and believers who need our prayers. Dr. Coker shares his top ten prayer requests and suggested we pray:

• For government leaders making decisions affecting millions of people

• For peace and the end of the war

• For access to basic necessities (food, water, medicine)

• For traveling mercies for those fleeing to the West

• For Ukrainian believers to carry the Gospel with them as they flee

• For evangelical pastors and believers, a minority in Russia, who often experience increased scrutiny and pressure in tense times like these

• For believers in Ukraine to give a powerful witness

• For receptivity to the Gospel in lives of those receiving help

• For believers in European countries to show hospitality to those coming in

• For people to see God at work despite these horrendous circumstances

[David L. Chancey is pastor, McDonough Road Baptist Church, Fayetteville, Georgia. The church gathers at 352 McDonough Road and invites you to join them for worship at 10 a.m. and Bible study at 11:10 a.m. Find online worship options at www.mcdonoughroad.org. See Chancey’s other writings at www.davidchancey.com.]

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