Presidential Perspectives

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What Your Church Leaders Prayed About at Adventist World Headquarters

I invite you to earnestly pray for the challenges facing our communities all over this world.

What Your Church Leaders Prayed About at Adventist World Headquarters

A view of the Adventist world church headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland, as photographed by a drone controlled by a cellphone in 2014. (San Suvankham / ADRA International / NAD / Facebook)

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Our General Conference Administrative Committee (ADCOM) generally meets every Tuesday to discuss agenda items and process many items for the General Conference and church at large.

This Tuesday, July 12, 2016, we met and took an hour at the beginning to discuss the many tragic and dramatic events taking place and to earnestly pray for various places and people. It is so important that our committees or meetings take adequate time to pray together in humble requests to our Heavenly Father for His guidance, blessing and intervention. We have been taking thoughtful and prolonged time to pray in a number of our committees. Prayer is so vital to anything we do as Seventh-day Adventists. At times in a meeting, we too often simply have an opening prayer and move on with the agenda. At ADCOM we took extra time to pray for the fragile condition of so many places around the globe.

I personally shared many areas that we needed to pray for, with special attention to the tragic killings and racial tensions in the United States. It is so important that we live our lives connected with Christ in order to share His love with others thus diffusing the animosity that builds up with misunderstanding and anger. It is so important that we respect people and their lives regardless of their background, race, language, or origin.

Others in ADCOM shared special prayer requests, and then we had a very special prayer session. One member of ADCOM prayed that we as Seventh-day Adventists would exemplify the racial harmony that is needed to show the world the best way to live peacefully with others.

It was a touching experience to pray together about the great needs in our world today, including the very sad developments engulfing the United States, a country that should be exemplifying Christian compassion and loving care toward people of every ethnic background.

Other Areas of Prayer

We prayed earnestly for this tragic development in the United States; for Russia, where religious liberty is being curtailed; for Burundi, where many have been facing great challenges; for South Sudan, where warfare has been raging in the last few days; for Iraq, where rampant violence continues; for Turkey, where very recent bomb blasts took place; for Azerbaijan, where religious liberty is at risk; for the problem of hunger that is affecting so many; for various people and for needs and meetings planned.

The world seems to be disintegrating just about every time you access a news source. What an important time for Seventh-day Adventists to be so connected with Christ that we are able to show God’s love to a dying world in practical ways, lift up the Word of God, and point people to Christ’s soon coming. What a vital thing to pray for others and for difficult situations. That can then translate into doing something to help others through God’s power, showing them the power of Christ-like living.

That is only possible as we maintain our daily connection to the Lord through prayer, Bible Study, study of the Spirit of Prophecy, and then sharing our testimony of God’s love with others. The three angels’ messages are full of Christ and His righteousness. We must rely completely on the Lord for the resolution of the problems we and others are facing in the world. As we are revived and reformed through the power of the Holy Spirit, we are changed to become more and more like Christ. I invite you to pray earnestly for the challenges facing our world and our communities.

A Moving Experience

That marvelous book “The Desire of Ages,” with the best biographical picture of Christ outside of the Bible, tells us on page 362: “In the estimation of the rabbis, it was the sum of religion to be always in a bustle of activity. They depended upon some outward performance to show their superior piety. Thus they separated their souls from God and built themselves up in self-sufficiency. The same dangers still exist. As activity increases and men become successful in doing any work for God, there is danger of trusting to human plans and methods. There is a tendency to pray less, and to have less faith. Like the disciples, we are in danger of losing sight of our dependence on God, and seeking to make a savior of our activity. We need to look constantly to Jesus, realizing that it is His power which does the work. While we are to labor earnestly for the salvation of the lost, we must also take time for meditation, for prayer, and for the study of the word of God. Only the work accomplished with much prayer, and sanctified by the merit of Christ, will in the end prove to have been efficient for good.” 

What a moving experience it was in ADCOM to pray earnestly for the great challenges facing our communities and countries. Again, I invite you to earnestly pray for the challenges facing our communities all over this world and ask the Lord to help us do something to help people see the big picture of the great controversy between Christ and Satan. Please pray on your own, in your homes, in your churches, in your schools, in your hospitals and clinics, in your committees, in your offices, in your shops, on the farm, in the workplace and wherever you can to bring about a positive change for good through the power of the Holy Spirit.

We know that God and truth will win. Ask that He will work through us to show the world what He can do through a changed life here on this earth that points people to the ultimate remedy: Christ’s soon return.