Looking out to our world (2) – joining with Malawi’s people
Who shut up the sea behind doors when it burst forth from the womb, when I made the clouds its garment and wrapped it in thick darkness, when I fixed limits for it and set its doors and bars in place, when I said,
“this far you may come and no farther."
As a church, we have a special relationship with Malawi and have supported the work of Eagles there for over 15 years as they mobilise and empower local churches to work with their communities to bring transformation spiritually, physically, mentally and emotionally. Many of us have met their staff and some have seen the impact of their work in person.
Malawi is the fourth poorest country in the world. It has faced disaster after disaster, often as a result of our legacy of colonialism, unjust trade laws and climate change. As this new crisis of Covid-19 strikes, the situation looks impossible. Malawi has the highest population density in Africa, with families often living in one room. The whole country has only seven ventilators. Its health services do not have even the most basic equipment. Its courts have shown that the government cheated in the last elections, so it has no legitimate leadership and is due a rerun of elections in May.
Let us pray empathetically. Picture yourself in a village there, sitting on a mat outside the house. Feel the hot sun beating down. Smell the dust blown around by the warm wind. Experience the rumblings of hunger in your stomach and the weakness in your limbs. See yourself rising to stand as others around you also rise outside their huts and join together in song – “Tikumandani Mbuye” (we praise you Lord). Let us join with them in praise and petition, crying out to him:
Father of love, we pray that you will step in to set limits on what the virus can do and prevent it wreaking the same havoc: “This far you may come and no further.” Turn evil to good, restoring better harvests and protecting the most vulnerable. Shut the door to fake news and misinformation. Give ears to the leaders in all spheres of churches, faith groups, politics and community to hear your voice and take wise action. Protect and strengthen the Eagles staff, bringing hope and creative response through them and the churches they have trained to shine a light across the nation.
Listen to the Father now and ask him to bring to mind a verse, picture or phrase to pray over Malawi now and over the Eagles staff. If you think God may have given you an insight or encouragement for them, please email it to firstname.lastname@example.org and we can send them to the Eagles staff to support them at this time.