Intercessory prayer is a necessity.
By praying for others we fulfill a basic biblical command (John 17:20-21), but also show concern about the world around us, even for people we will never meet.
The release of journalists Euna Lee and Lisa Ling from North Korea is a cause for celebration, but also a sobering reminder of how the dictatorial regime of Kim Jong-Il imprisons people with little regard to social and religious freedoms we can easily take for granted.
Similarly, the ghastly burnings of Christians in Pakistan over rumors of a destroyed Koran is difficult to wrap your brain around when your biggest struggle for worship may be getting your kids to Sunday School on time.
Much has been made, here and elsewhere about the disaggregation of North American Christianity due to greater interest in more generic spirituality and greater competition from other faiths, not mention atheism.
But whatever distress we may feel about growing numbers of people supposedly setting aside their Bible or ignoring it completely, it pales in comparison to the daily dangers fellow believers around the world
When you go to church on Sunday, certainly pray for those people and things close to you personally, but neglect others who feel the same as you but don’t have the freedom to openly express it.