I don’t often read or watch the daily news. But I’ve been paying close attention these past few days. I wish I didn’t feel the need to, but I can’t ignore what’s happening in Afghanistan.
If you aren’t familiar with this current event, I encourage you to go look at the heartbreaking news on your own, but here’s a very brief summary: As the American military has withdrawn from Afghanistan, the Taliban, a radical Muslim extremist group, has taken control of the country and American military bases and weapons, leaving the Afghani people in a desperate situation. Many are attempting to flee the country with little success, many women and girls are being abused, and men forced to join the Taliban. The small number of Christians in Afghanistan are facing intense persecution, threats against their lives, and many expect to be killed within the next few days and weeks and many already have been.
Since the news on Sunday that Kabul, the capital and largest city in Afghanistan, was taken over by the Taliban, I have spent the past few days fasting and praying for the people of Afghanistan. I plead with you to join me in prayer for the people of Afghanistan. If you’re not sure where to start, I wanted to share this prayer I wrote in my journal:
I am coming before you today, again with a heavy heart. Recently, I’ve started hearing the words “Taliban” and “Afghanistan” come up more and more. I’ve been hearing and watching and reading so many heartbreaking stories—from Kabul and from all over the country of Afghanistan.
Today, I have committed to praying alongside these brothers and sisters in Christ. This church has remained steadfast in you for so long and through so much. They know how to put their trust and hope in you alone, as they have done so many times in the past. You have provided for them; you have opened doors for them.
The need for prayer in Afghanistan is an urgent one right now. There is a desperate need for us, your church, to come together in prayer. We need to pray for our own nation’s leaders and decisions, as well as the evident need for prayer over the Afghani people, and even prayer for the Taliban itself.
My heart is heavy with all of these stories I’ve heard of the situations and desperation of these dear Afghani women and children.
Some of these people do not even expect to be alive tomorrow. My Christian brothers and sisters, especially, see very little future under this Taliban control.
These hundreds of people, your followers, were willing to forsake everything to follow you, and now that even includes their lives. I am joining them in desperately praying that their lives would be spared. But, if that is not your will, I pray that you would still be glorified through their lives, and especially deaths.
I pray that you would grant them boldness and wisdom, especially in this challenging situation, that they would remain a strong witness for the gospel and for you. May they remain unashamed, even in the midst of countless threats and even in the face of death.
Grant Afghani people the wisdom they need in making the necessary, difficult, life or death decisions.
My heart aches at the thought—the images and footage that comes to mind—that these Afghanis, so many Afghani people, would rather risk the likelihood of death in attempts to flee, to leave homeland and friends and family, to leave, essentially, everything.
The very thought is overwhelming to me, that these people, so many people, are choosing to risk their lives to try to leave their country, rather than staying and having to live under the rule of the Taliban. Death is, very sadly, likely either way.
There is no easy choice for these dear Afghani people, and for many, I think of the believers in particular, there is basically no way out, no escape. These people have seen so much already. Father, please protect them.
May these people find you, and may they find true peace in you. Comfort them, please, and protect them. They need you right now, more than ever. May they find you; may that need be satisfied.
Father, please help and protect these people.
In Jesus’ name,
Editor’s Note: Please continue to be in prayer for Afghanistan. Other prayer points include:
-Protection over US citizens trapped in Afghanistan and for a way to be rescued.
-Protection over military forces and other groups going in to rescue people.
-That the Taliban would be defeated.
-For leaders to act with wisdom.
-For an end to violence.