A Faux Pas and an Election

Man Praying

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A Short Note from Mark S Mirza

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My Dear Pray-ers,

MAJOR Faux Pas on my part! I apologize! But when I sent out the last E-Letter, I inadvertently set the photos at 150 pixels wide and did not allow you to click on them to see them larger. My FAULT!

So I have fixed that by putting all of those photos on two SWAYS. While they are noted below in the icons section, I give them to you here also:

On Wednesday morning of this week, after our US elections I found myself burdened about the next steps for us in the USA. Here is my post from Wednesday, “Is the Church Better Off Today?” and here is my post from today, “Burning Away the Dross” from Ezra 9.

Mark

Blessings my friends,

Remember to simply click the Icon (or the underlined title) to go to that article . . .


 

A Kenyan SWAY

In this SWAY I have included many details and photos that you may not have seen. Please “favorite” it so that you can return to it for updates.
You can find this SWAY in the Ministry SWAYS section of our website.


 

Prayer Boot Camps

We have had some very unique Prayer Boot Camps over the last few weeks. We have added quite a number of photos from Kenya, and most recently from Covington GA.
Remember that you can find this and all of our SWAYS in the Ministry SWAYS section of our website.


Teaching Children to Pray Scripture

I found a wonderful little children’s book of verses from 1887. Combining that with prayers based on those verses, the outcome is this little book. But do you know who likes it the most? Yep, parents and grandparents reading one or two prayers per night to their youngsters.

 


A Mug That Goes With The Novel

That sure sounds like a marketing ploy! But if you enjoy drinking out of a mug, let it be our themed mug you’re drinking from. And while you’re at it, take a look at “The Pray-ers” Tote, and the novel.


 

Mark’s New Website

We are making some incredible headway on this site. Please stop by and check it out! Please “favorite” the site as we are making changes and updates every day.

 


The Pray-ers for Christmas

We have dropped the price for the Christmas season and we’d be honored if you picked up a few for yourself and your family. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed!


 

Prayer Board

The more I study and the more I teach, the more committed I am to prayer. And just as Michael Guido had a Prayer Board, so do I. This is a representation of my prayer board, which is on the wall, next to me as I type. We hope that over the internet we can make you aware of our prayer requests

 


Donations

Please, feel no obligation, but if you would like to, you can donate to Common Thread Ministries.
Thank you.


Calendar

We have made some DRASTIC improvements to the calendar. Please take the time to check it out, and, if you will, use it to pray for us. Thank you.

 


Mark S Mirza
Founder/Speaker/Author for Common Thread Ministries
E: Mark@CTMPrayer.org
W: www.MarkMirza.com
F: MarkMirza
F: CommonThreadMinistries
F: ThePray-ers

T: @CTMPrayer
T: @ThePray_ers

Copyright © 2016 Common Thread Ministries, All rights reserved.
We encourage your prayer life when you have had contact with Common Thread Ministries

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Atlanta, GA 30308

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Burning Away the Dross

The actual burning away of dross

The Election

Far from this last Tuesday’s elections being a “saving experience” for our nation, I think that Ezra says it best in the beginning of Ezra 9:8

“But now, for a brief moment, grace has come from Yahweh. . . “

The Meaning

By application, this is a message for the church! Regardless, let me say that more clearly, REGARDLESS of the side of the aisle you prefer, this is a wake-up call to the church! God is “giving us new life, so that we can rebuild the house of our God and repair its ruins. . . ” (Ezra 9:9m)

But remember how this prayer from Ezra started. Look at verse 6

“My God, I am ashamed and embarrassed to lift my face toward You. . . “

And here is my question to you, to myself, to all of us, REGARDLESS  of our party affiliation, are we willing, like Ezra, to honestly view our sins as he did? I would remind many of you that you have been praying 2 Chronicles 7:14 for our nation. But have you forgotten the main point of the verse? The main point IS NOT the healing of our land, it is the forgiveness of our sins!

Mixed or Interracial Marriages

And finally, there will be those who will want to ignore this passage because they wrongly apply the first two verses of this chapter. They will read it and WRONGLY assume that God is against mixed marriages. My friends, my bigoted friends, on both sides of the aisle, the meaning of these two verses is found in the center of verse 1:

“. . . whose detestable practices. . . “

The reason for the asking of forgiveness was NOT because of mixed marriages but because the people of God turned from God. If you still wonder about God’s view of mixed marriages just check out Jesus’ lineage.

My friends, hear the Word of our Lord, thru Ezra’s prayer:

“. . . You, our God, have punished us less than our sins deserve. . . . no one can stand in Your presence because of this [guilt]. See Ezra 9:13e and 15e.”

Blessings or Blessings?

I like to end my posts with a simple, “Blessings my friends” but may I end it a bit differently, in light of my message today?

Expect blessings my friends, but only as you come humbly before your God,

 

Mark S Mirza

Is The Church Better Off Today?

Trump Victory Banner from CNN

IS THE CHURCH BETTER OFF TODAY?

I don’t know, and fortunately it’s not my responsibility.

I awoke this morning with the question of the church running thru my mind.

I’m bombarded on FB by Christian friends who are scared for themselves, their family and their friends. And I have other Christian friends who sound like salvation has now come.

Will you indulge me to state the obvious? Your protection does not come from Washington DC and nor does your salvation come from Washington DC.

IS THE CHURCH BETTER OFF TODAY?

Hmm, perhaps I do bear some responsibility.

Regardless of which side of the aisle you are most comfortable with, we need to ask ourselves if we have ignored God. I suspect that at the very least, we have ignored John 15:7 by not abiding in Him. And therefore He doesn’t abide in us. So when we pray, well, we are merely, “throwing up a hope and a prayer.”

If you are scared to death, I would ask, where is your humble, trusting cry to the Lord for grace?

If you are euphoric with joy, I would ask, where is your humble, submissive cry to the Lord for mercy?

This election result, whether you consider it a loss or a victory, does not change God’s sovereignty. It does not change God’s desire for an intimate relationship with you.

And satan’s role in this? It is the same. He is a liar and a deceiver (John 8:44).

IS THE CHURCH BETTER OFF TODAY?

Yes, I know that I do have some responsibility.

One more thought needs to be addressed here. And that has to do with who your enemy is and who your enemy is not. Ephesians 6:12 says that your struggle IS NOT with flesh and blood. Romans 15:5 implies that if you have a sense of disunity with anyone, it is on you.

We are good at pointing out who our human enemy is, aren’t we? Because of that propensity to point our finger at our human “enemy” would you accept this practical take-away?

Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and He will take care of the details in your life, which is why we need not worry about tomorrow, even though challenges come each day, (Matthew 6:33-34). And remember, the same One who said He’ll take care of the details of our life, holds today and tomorrow in His hands.

So what will you do? Will you focus on the flesh or the Spirit?  Romans 8:6 tells us which we are doing when it declares that if we do not have peace it is because we are focusing on the things of the flesh, and NOT the Spirit. Your peace or lack of peace will tell you what you are doing.

IS THE CHURCH BETTER OFF TODAY?

I suppose that’s up to you.

Blessings my friend,

Mark S Mirza

Community Prayer Box

This is exciting. Yesterday I drive up to Zion Baptist, where I did a Sunday, War Room Prayer Boot Camp and I saw this affirmation of the importance of prayer.

And you know what? We had a great day of the Lord.

Mark S Mirza

 

{CAPTION}

 

The Kenya Trip. I’m Flying and You’re Enjoying

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A Digital Diary from Kenya

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My Dear Pray-ers,

I am in the air on the way home from Kenya when you are receiving this, so, hopefully, this is a short diary of what has transpired during these 9 days.

Thank you for praying for me. And if you haven’t, that’s okay, BECAUSE our God is outside of time, so you can pray for me now, and I think He’ll hear and respond as if you prayed last week.

Blessings my friends,

Mark


 

 


Day 1 Comments:

A day of BIG decisions, like which Kenyan shirt I’ll wear?

Which Kenyan Shirt to Wear?

Also looked at photos of men and women in Kenya handing out our “Save-The-Date” cards for the War Room Prayer Boot Camps that we would do.

And then of course I needed a photo of the stone animals I have already brought home so that I dod not duplicate what we have. These are stone, heavy and too cool.

Oh yeah. The blue shirt won!

The Blue Shirt won

While I was in the air, a friend found this quote and put it up, in preparation for my visit



Day 2 Comments:

Sometimes the littlest things are the most exciting.
Like seeing that after 24 hours of traveling I’m only 12 minutes from my destination. HOORAY!!!

KLM Digital Flight map

The “Save-The-Date” cards that were being handed out are below:



Day 3 Comments:

My driver and EXCELLENT host, who knows TONS of things about his country, picked me up at my hotel and we drove to Nakuru where I had scheduled a prayer meeting, seeking the Lord for where I believe the Lord is stretching Common Thread Ministries.

There’s something about seeing Zebra along the side of the freeway that just makes you want to say, “We’re not in Kansas Toto!”

Zebra along the road

Arriving that night, besides my permanent team members was Pastor James and his “Tuk Tuk” that 4 people squeezed into.

Arriving in a Tuk Tuk

Arriving in a Tuk Tuk

Arriving in a Tuk Tuk

The evening we spent in prayer focused upon an elderly pastors ministry that we will call the Ezekiel Ministry. Click HERE or the photo to go to the link where we start to explain this ministry.

Web page for Prayer Marshals



Day 4 Comments:

The Kendrick Brothers’ War Room and Claude King’s Prayer Boot Camp arrived in Kenya where 50 people were blessed by the movie and, I believe, had their prayer lives challenged.

Praying at the Prayer Boot Camp

Praying at the Prayer Boot Camp

Praying at the Prayer Boot Camp

I am so honored to teach on prayer.

Mark Mirza teaching a Prayer Boot Camp in Nakuru

At dinner Rebecca Shahasi showed me her In Touch Messenger. I gave some to my permanent team members. She said that when she wakes up anxious she either puts the Bible reading on or she puts the Swahili speaking Dr. Charles Stanley on, and immediately has peace and falls asleep.

Falling asleep to Dr Charles Stanley and the In Touch Messenger

Later in the evening we continued our prayer meeting for the elderly pastors. Besides my two prayer teachers, young men I’ve been pouring my life into for 3 years, two Kenyan senior pastors were there. Lots of questions were asked and then when we were done praying I felt compelled and so we gathered around David and Lawrence, laying hands on them, sending them out to teach prayer, SO THAT the elderly pastors can marshal the elderly of their villages into prayer warriors.
I believe God is up to something. We need your prayers.



Day 5 Comments:

Another long day as we begin in Nakuru speaking at Lanet Baptist Church.

Lanet Baptist Church in Nakuru

Lanet Baptist Church in Nakuru

This is how the pastor and his wife arrive, in their “Tuk Tuk.”

Arriving to Lanet Baptist Church in their Tuk Tuk

I fell in love with the kids. I always do.

group picture at Lanet Baptist Church in Nakuru

But this one was really special. In fact, I probably need to confess that I now have a girlfriend. Her name is Grace and the expressions she can make. I’m afraid that we interrupted people who were supposed to be listening to the service.
Oh well, her and I had fun.

Grace and her many faces

Grace and I enjoying each other instead of the service

Grace and I enjoying each other instead of the service

Grace and I enjoying each other instead of the service

Grace and I enjoying each other instead of the service

Grace and I enjoying each other instead of the service

Speaking before the congregation at Lanet Baptist Church. The Pastor’s wife is translating for me.

Speaking before the congregation at Lanet Baptist Church. The Pastor's wife is translating for me.

Grace and I enjoying each other instead of the service

Pastor Mbeche's wife interpretting for me at Lanet Baptist Church in Nakuru

Pastor David Lyle from Mt. Tabor Baptist Church in Duluth GA purchased this microphone and cord for Lanet. And here they are asking the Lord to bless it’s use. These folks are so appreciative of the littlest things. It is very humbling, and exciting.

microphone and cord for Lanet

Pastor Mbeche

I shared with these folks my burden for the elderly pastors. In attendance were Baptist executives leading Nakuru County and pastors who gave up their pulpits to hear the message.
Again, very humbling.

Sharing about our Prayer Marshal ministry

Sharing about our Prayer Marshal ministry

And in case you are wondering. They are Baptists through and through!

Batists Eat

Baptists Eat

We then left for Nyeri, which is at the foot of Mt. Kenya, where I would speak before returning in the morning to do another Prayer Boot Camp.
But FIRST, we had to cross the equator.

Crossing the equator

Hmmm. Maybe we are in Kansas, Toto.

Cow crossing sign



Day 6 Comments:

The host church for today’s Prayer Boot Camp

Gospel Outreach Church in the Nyeri area

Through the back window of my hotel in Nyeri.

Through the back window of my hotel in Nyeri.

And then up the road, looking at Mt. Kenya.

Mt. Kenya

Mt Kenya

Mt Kenya

Can anybody guess why I took this photo of a Baptist Church?

A Baptist church that is a house of prayer

It was kind of funny. I felt like I was being flanked by bodyguards walking thru Karatina

Bodyguards in Karatina

Yes, Starbucks is everywhere. Even in Karatina

Starbucks is everywhere

David Karanja and Lawrence Onunga are my two Prayer Teachers in Kenya. Here they are setting up for the movie.

David Karanja

Lawrence Onunga

The electronics team

Prayer time during the Boot Camp in Nyeri.

Prayer time in Nyeri

Prayer time in Nyeri

Prayer time in Nyeri

Men Praying

Everywhere I go I get to enjoy the kids.

Enjoying the kids in Nyeri

the kids in nyeri

Lydia was a huge point of encouragement to come to Nyeri. You’ll see her earlier in this E-Letter handing out “Save-The-Date” cards

Lydia in Nyeri

Let me give you part of Zipporah’s testimony. She sent it to me today.
“I thank God for the relief I feel in my heart. I had lived under captive nature of blaming myself and even my Creator. I had not known the secret of letting God’s will happen. . . .”
This woman walked out of the Boot Camp a COMPLETELY different person than when she walked in 4 hours earlier. It was an incredible testimony to the transforming work of the Holy Spirit. It was incredible!



Day 7 Comments:

Yuk! It’s time to go home.

Map heading home

Map of Nairobi



Day 8 Comments:

This is the serious team in Nairobi, Ruth, Eric and Antony.

The Nairobi Team, Ruth, Eric and Antony

But this is who the they REALLY are.

The Nairobi Team, Ruth, Eric and Antony



Day 9 Comments:

Digital Ticket

If you would pray. Pray for me that:

  • I would be able to return in February
  • David and Lawrence will befriend elderly pastors
  • Antony will find the right youth to pour his life into
  • Eric will creatively handle the IT items he has responsibility for
  • Ruth would be able collate all of the ministry items
  • And that people touched this week would become devoted to prayer, being watchful and thankful (Colossians 4:2)

As always, we trust God for the finances.


Mark S Mirza
Founder/Speaker for Common Thread Ministries
E: Mark@CTMPrayer.org
W: www.MarkMirza.com
W: www.CTMPrayer.org
W: www.ThePray-ers.com
W: www.CTMPulishingInc.com

Copyright © 2016 Common Thread Ministries, All rights reserved.
We encourage your prayer life when you have had contact with Common Thread Ministries

Our mailing address is:

Common Thread Ministries

850 Piedmont Ave NE #1506

Atlanta, GA 30308

Add us to your address book

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Precious Time at Highland

Such a sweet time with these folks at Highland Baptist Church in Hogansville GA. Pastor Terry caught me in front of my new business card up on the screen.

At the end of the church service I asked everyone to “suspend” the normal view of the alter call which is that, “only those with BIG sounds confess to the alter.”

They agreed, and 90% of the church came to the alter. I was at the alter praying and kept hearing people walk down the aisle behind me. It was so special.

I finally went to the pastor and asked him to close. I them went and sat in one of the pews.

Looking forward to tonight!

Mark S Mirza