Ever heard of Timbuktu? You know, that place way, way out there? Turns out, it isn’t as far as we’d might think, and it’s in danger. CNN is also covering the story.
“Islamist militants in Mali’s northern region are making their way south. As they go, they are being met with resistance by the Mali government. However, it is believed that Mali’s military cannot withstand the brunt of a full al-Qaeda offensive. The militants’ goal is to take the cities of Kona and Mopti while on their way to their end-target: Bamako, Mali’s capital. Once there, the Islamists intend to force the government to apply Sharia law throughout Mali.”*
Last year, Mali was unranked on Open Doors’ World Watch list. This year, they are number seven on the list. International Christian Concern reports that many Christians in Mali are now living in refugee camps to escape the southward-moving Islamic militant forces.
Not only is Mali’s capital and government located in the south, but also the main airport. If it is taken over by the extremist groups, this could cause problems getting aid into and getting refugees out of the country. Moreover, Malian military is not properly equipped to fend off the al-Qaeda operatives. A former CIA station chief, unnamed for security purposes, said that only outside help can stop them.
The statement is true. While he/she was referring to military forces of industrialized nations like the U.S., there is a force stronger than any human military that can stop these imposing armies: The Lord God. He splits seas, stops suns, dries up rain and brings it again. He confuses enemy armies and strengthens righteous ones. He raises dead bodies and quickens hearts dead to sin.
Through prayer, we can help the Malian troops, Christians, and other citizens. Please join me in praying for those affected by the al-Qaeda troops in Mali and for the ceasing of the militants’ movement southward. Pray for religious freedom in Mali and the expulsion/dismantling of extremist groups.
“Pray that God would spoil the plans of the Islamic extremists and protect all of Mali’s citizens.Pray that the Mali government will have the resources it needs to protect its nation.Pray that the strength of Christians in Mali will be renewed; that they may be able to stand strong in their faith in Jesus Christ.”