If you know your history, you probably drew some eerie parallels between Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and Adolf Hitler’s annexation of the Sudetenland. But these days, World War II plays in black and white. What’s going on right now is in high-def color. Here’s one of the reasons it’s so vivid: Because of numerous international ministry opportunities over the past couple of decades, many of us have good friends who work with Christian organizations and churches in both countries in conflict. I think particularly of those connected to the European Association of Urban Missions. I spent last night checking in with colleagues in Kiev and Lutsk, and also St. Petersburg. They are praying and comforting those who are afraid. Others have relatives who are being called upon to bear arms, and that is bringing so much angst.
Our own ministries need our attention. But people in Ukraine and Russia need our fervent prayers. As Citygate Network’s president, I’m calling on you and other member CEOs to be on our knees for Christ followers in Ukraine and Russia who have both a spiritual and now physical battle raging around them.
Moments ago, as I was writing this, I received via text a brief video of a church group in Ukraine worshiping together. This verse is so appropriate: “Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire” (Hebrews 12:28 – 29, NIV).