Fighting for justice is at the heart of the 24-7 Prayer movement, and this powerful call to pray for Myanmar has been written by a friend of 24-7 Prayer.
He shares the latest updates and prayer points around the military coup that began on 1 February 2021:
The last time I walked through North Okkalapa township in Yangon, Myanmar, I was furniture shopping and taking cute Instagram photos of the streets.
The last image I saw from North Okkalapa was a video of a man being executed by the Myanmar police, calmly shot in the back and killed as he was escorted under arrest down a once busy shopping street.
Since the military coup in Myanmar at the beginning of February hundreds of thousands - if not millions - of ordinary Myanmar people have repeatedly poured onto the streets to protest against the military seizing power.
The protests have been staggeringly diverse and astonishingly brave: young and old, rich and poor, Buddhist, Muslim and Christian have all rallied together against the military’s power grab.
And the military response has been staggeringly brutal. Arrests, beatings and the use of live ammunition have increased, as have the deaths of protestors.
"What can we do in a world of such reckless hate?"
I no longer live in Myanmar but, like many others I know, I am utterly undone, and struggle to know how to respond. We sit and watch shaky phone footage of familiar faces fleeing overwhelming brutality in the places we once lived and loved.
And as I watch - helpless and unravelling- a question keeps echoing in my head from one of The Lord of the Rings films: "What can men do against such reckless hate?"
Perhaps the only answer comes from a 45 year old Myanmar Catholic nun, Sister Ann Rose Nu Tawng, who during protests, has repeatedly fallen to her knees in front of heavily armed police and, with hands raised to heaven, begged them to turn back, to spare the lives of the young protestors at her back, even asking them to shoot her rather than them.
Tragically, despite her intercessions, the police have continued their brutality and more people in her town have died. Yet she has persisted, returning again and again over the past weeks to kneel in front of police and intercede on behalf of the young people of her community.
What can we do in a world of such reckless hate?
Perhaps we can follow the example of Sister Ann Rose Nu Tawng and, rejecting despair, choose to repeatedly return to our knees and beg and intercede on behalf of the oppressed, the broken hearted, and the captive peoples of Myanmar.
As they continue to risk all for a future free from fear, perhaps right now returning to our knees is the very best we can do.
Pray for Myanmar:
- Pray that the Military would step back from violence, stop killing the peaceful protestors and seek a negotiated way out of the crisis.
- Pray that the international community would reject the cynicism of regional and global politics and act decisively against the military coup to protect the people of Myanmar.
- Pray that the protestors would continue to show restraint and not resort to violence despite the provocation they are under.
- Pray that leaders of integrity and vision would be raised up in the protest movement that can change the dynamics of politics in Myanmar and start to build a more equal and equitable country.
- Pray for protection for the church in Myanmar and that they would be able to be a voice for justice and Jesus in the country.
Photo by Macau Photo Agency on Unsplash