Psa. 63 You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water. 2 I have seen you in the sanctuaryand beheld your power and your glory. 3 Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. 4 I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands.

In Australia we are no strangers to drought.   The kind of drought that dries up and kills.   And what rejoicing there is when after months and sometimes years of drought, the rain comes.   Many of us have known spiritual drought.  We long for renewal and revival – both personal and in our church.  So we should do what the Psalmist does – earnestly seek the Lord in prayer.

“When we neglect the praising of God, we lose both the comfort of God’s love and our own too.”  Richard Sibbes.

Petition: Please join with us in praying for:

1.The World   – The number of confirmed cases is 19,720,406 (up 1,755,279 compared with 1,807,542 the previous week.). There have been 728,745 deaths of people with Covid (up 41,678 compared with 39,908 last week).   There have been renewed cases in countries such as Vietnam which thought they had dealt with the situation.  It appears as though countries which suppress the virus are still susceptible later on. Brazil is the second country to pass 100,000 deaths.

2. Australia now has had 21,084 cases (up 3,188 compared with 3,520 in in the previous week) with 295 deaths (+ 87 compared with 53 the previous week)

State Total Cases Weekly Change TW/LW Total Deaths Change in Deaths TW/LW
ACT 113 +0 3 0
NSW 3,861 + 77 (116) 50 0
NT 33 +0 0 0
QLD 1,088 +3 6 0
SA 459 +6 4 0
TAS 229 + 0 13 0
VIC 14,659 +3,102 (3,376) 210 +87 (52)
WA 642 +0 9 0

The situation in Victoria is of course the most serious, with several hundred cases per day and the resultant increase in deaths.  NSW is trying to trace the handful of cases which have as yet an unknown source.

There are 658 people in hospital (+250 compared with 167) with 51 in intensive care (+5).   4,57,414 tests have been carried out with 0.4% being positive.  11,869 people have recovered. There are 8,155 active cases.

3. Vaccine and Cures – International health experts are calling for caution as Russia prepares to launch a mass vaccination campaign to combat Covid-19. Health Minister Mikhail Murashko announced this week that the Gamaleya Institute, a state-run research facility in Moscow, had completed clinical trials of a coronavirus vaccine and is on course to secure regulatory approval. “We plan wider vaccinations for October,” Murashko said, adding that doctors and teachers would be the first to be immunised.

But many scientists are concerned about what the BBC describes as Russia’s “fast-track approach”, with the World Health Organization (WHO) stressing that a blanket preventative for coronavirus is extremely unlikely at this stage.

4. Church – Some churches are taking the opportunity in this situation to step up their outreach and evangelism.  Most of this is being done online.  Pray for such outreach efforts – that we would be able to reach out with the Gospel vaccine – for our greatest needs.  Reconciliation with God and our neighbour!

5.  Personal and Family – Remember the elderly in our families.  Some of whom live on their own, far away from loved ones.  Pray that in a time of vulnerability and fear they would know love and peace.

A Prayer of Repentance:   O Lord Jesus – we confess that we seek to satisfy our spiritual thirst with material things, and things that are not from you.  Give us the wisdom to know that we can never be fully satisfied without you.  Enable us to long for your Spirit, that we may ask the Father who gives so lavishly and graciously.  Amen.  

A Prayer of Thanksgiving:  Our Father in Heaven, we bless you that in the midst of drought you send rain.   We thank you for the rain in many stated this weekend that has given much needed new life to some dry and parched areas.   Grant that we may know the rain of your Spirit, poured out on us and on your church throughout the world.  You are the God of all grace, and the God of all power.  We praise your Name, Amen.