Today’s request for Belarus is to pray for the president of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko. Lukashenko has been president of Belarus since 1994. The economy of Belarus during that time has been unstable, requiring loans from foreign countries, including China.
In Belarus, the television is state-controlled and the government is viewed as more dictatorial than democratic. The European Union has begun to open dialogues with Lukashenko in an effort to encourage reform.
Lukashenko’s family relationships are also strained. His wife has not lived with him since his election and he has publicly shamed his firstborn son. I shared these two photos, one happy, one angry, to remind us that there is a duel nature in all of us. Whether we are humble people trying to live righteously or world leaders grasping for power, parents seeking peaceful lives or students seeking knowledge, whether we are the persecuted seeking strength or the persecutors living in suspicion and hatred, we each have the potential for good and evil, for joy and for despair.
The moment we condemn a person based on our limited knowledge of them, we condemn ourselves. Prejudice has never won a person to Christ, and this is the goal of praying for the persecuted church, to see the persecutors saved, not destroyed.
Holy Spirit, You search our hearts and You know us completely. You know the past, the present, and the future. You have numbered the hairs on our head and the days of our life. You know this man from the day of his conception. You have ordained that he is in power in Belarus. Holy Father, You only have the power to heal his heart, to transform it and turn it towards You. You know what will humble him and bring him into submission to Your will. I pray today that You would, by whatever means necessary, change his heart and bring him to the freedom that is found in You and to pass on that freedom to the citizens of his nation. I pray that You would open the doors of reconciliation between Lukashenko and other foreign leaders, between him and his wife and sons, between him and his people. I pray that religious freedom and freedom of speech would become important to his heart, not for subversive reasons, but for righteous reasons. I pray that You would put people into his path to plant seeds of love and of light and of truth directly into the soil of his heart, and that they would yield good fruit. In Jesus’ name, Amen.