Standing in the Gap — no.16

— praying for children accused of witchcraft.

Then they said to each other, “What we’re doing is not right. This is a day of good news and we are keeping it to ourselves. If we wait until daylight, punishment will overtake us. Let’s go at once and report this to the royal palace.” — 2 Kings 7:9

Context

These are the words of four men affected by leprosy, who lived at the entrance of the besieged city of Samaria. These four men were cut off from their community, yet still had a place in the structure of civil and religious society, albeit a lowly one. Their city was devastated and the people were starving. When the men discover the abandoned enemy camp, they feast and plunder, but soon remember their community’s plight. So they return and share the life–changing good news with the leaders, yet remain marginalised by the stigma around their disease. 

There are so many biblical stories of God’s miraculous power being delivered through the actions of the marginalised. SCWA is gathering stories of God’s power in the lives of children marginalised by accusations of witchcraft.

Thank God

Things to thank God for…

  • The work of SCWA’s partner Feba, which has been developing audio and film resources, giving a voice to children accused of witchcraft. Please pray for these resources to be made available throughout many nations and broadcast widely, for the benefit of children, families, churches and communities.
  • The steering group of the SCWA coalition, who seek to raise the profile of the needs of children accused of witchcraft, and to mobilise others to lead on this issue within their spheres of influence.
  • The increasing interest from large, international organisations in exploring the impact of witchcraft accusations against children, and where this is happening in their communities. 
Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness. — James 3:18

The wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace–loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness. — James 3:17–18

Not only are we hearing the children’s voices; we also hear from those in positions of authority and community leadership, who have been involved in the unspeakable harm of children accused of witchcraft, but now thankfully recognise the harm they have done.

Please Pray

  • Some church leaders have described the deliverance of children accused of witchcraft as a ‘lucrative business’. Please pray for widespread recognition of injustice in our hearts, our communities and our leaders, and for courage to advocate for change.
  • For all those who have opportunities to speak on the radio or through film; pray that they will be wise about the narratives they present. Pray that they will neither sensationalise the abuse and horror that many children suffer through accusations of witchcraft, nor use their platform to mislead others.
  • For peace–loving, considerate, submissive leaders, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere, who will champion the cause of everyone accused of witchcraft, including children.
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