Psalm 115    Please read the whole Psalm:

Not to us, LORD, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness. 2 Why do the nations say, “Where is their God?” 3 Our God is in heaven; he does whatever pleases him.

People mock and attack God.  They mock and attack the Lord’s people.  Our concern is not to be with our own name and our own glory – but with the Lord’s.  It is because of his love and faithfulness that we can praise him.   Our response to such mockery is just simply to say that our God is in heaven, and he does what he wants.  He is not up for questioning.     We pray to the sovereign God.  And we pray that it will please him to remove this plague.

“Christian patience, or the grace of patience, is an ability or power to suffer hard and heavy things, according to the will of God.”   John Flavel: 

Petition: Please join with us in praying for:

1.The World   – There have been 220,638,478 cases (+4,293,306 – a slight decrease).   There are now 4,566,726 (+ 66,568 – a slight decrease) deaths of people with covid. The US, Malaysia, Japan and Thailand are all seeing substantial increases.  We give thanks that Indonesia has seen a significant drop.    

2. AustraliaThere have been 61,609 cases in total. (Up 10,353 – a 40% increase on the previous week).  

State Total Cases Weekly Change TW/LW Total Deaths Change in Deaths TW/LW
ACT 498 +124 (+129) 3 0
NSW 33,982 + 9,197 (+6,558) 180 +37 (+18)
NT 202 +1 (+1) 0 0
QLD 1,978 +6 (+14) 7 0
SA 880 +9 (+2) 4 0
TAS 235 + 0 (+ 0) 13 0
VIC 22,942      +1,497(+481) 823  +3 (+0)
WA 1,086 +0 (+23) 9 0

NSW continues at around 1500 cases per day and is expected to peak next week. 75% of the eligible population have had one vaccine – 40% double vaccinated.  Victoria has now given up on zero covid although the strict lockdown remains.  Cases are increasing every day.  The ACT continues in lockdown.  There have been 1,519,714 tests in the past week.  There are 1,238 people in hospital (+350) with 197 in ICU (+57).  There are 25,590 active cases (+8,738).

3. Vaccine and Cures – There have been 5.41 billion vaccine doses (+240 million). 71 doses for every 100 people. Australia now has 20.1 million (79 per 100 people) An extra 4 million Pfizer doses are being delivered to Australia this week.  Meanwhile 16 million doses have been destroyed in the US for being out of date – and poorer countries cannot get access to vaccines.   

4. Church – The Anglican and Catholic Archbishops of Sydney have issued a joint statement saying that they will not accept any requirement for a vaccine passport to permit attendance at church.  We give thanks for their clear stance. 

5.  Personal and Family –   Pray for families who are coping with the pain of mental illness and suicides. 

A Prayer of Repentance:  O Lord, we confess that we are too concerned for our own glory and name, and not yours.  Give us your heart and give us the courage to be faithful in proclaiming your name and speaking for your people, in the name of Jesus, Amen. 

Song:    Churches throughout Australia are having to find new creative ways to praise God online – St Thomas’s North Sydney is a good example of this – this is their online version of It is Well.

A Prayer of Thanksgiving:   

The LORD remembers us and will bless us: He will bless his people Israel, he will bless the house of Aaron, 13 he will bless those who fear the LORD— small and great alike. 14 May the LORD cause you to flourish, both you and your children. 15 May you be blessed by the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. (Ps 115)