According to the UN World Food Programme 870 million people worldwide – more than 1 out of every 10 people on the planet – are living with hunger in 2022. “We are facing hunger on an unprecedented scale, food prices have never been higher, and millions of lives and livelihoods are hanging in the balance.” The nations facing severe hunger and starvation are primarily in sub-Saharan Africa and Yemen in the Arabian Peninsula.
Looking at the statistics on hunger published by different organisations like the Global Report on Food Crises 2022, the UN World Food Programme, the African Union Summit and many others, is more than just alarming. There are many causes of the hunger crisis: wars, climate change, discrimination and inequality, corruption, etc. Apart from that, there has also been a change in the planting of new seasonal crops globally, some of which has been caused by the continuous war between Russia and Ukraine.
The world currently faces and experiences numerous complex adversities on an unprecedented scale. Some of the rising concerns include the availability of necessities to sustain life, such as food, water, sanitation etc. As we contemplate all these extreme and rising adversities in prayer, it is clear that ordinary solutions will not solve the problem. Supernatural intervention is necessary and for such we should pray.
What is needed?
More is needed than personal prayer for temporary alleviation of the immediate need. Groups of Believers need to gather and wait on the Lord to show them His heart concerning these matters. A fresh understanding of Biblical reasons why famine, pestilences, drought and war manifest, is needed. (2 Chronicles 7:14). Repentance needs to be offered, so the atoning blood of Jesus can remove all that hinders the blessing of our Heavenly Father to flow in families and the nations of the earth.
What is needed cannot easily be organised by a local church or a prayer network. However, the inward call of the Holy Spirit is already pressing upon the hearts and minds of Believers across the globe. But not all are responding to or heeding that call.
The call is this:
- Who will be willing to pay the price of prolonged intercession for true spiritual breakthrough over nations?
- Who will trust God for unprecedented miracles to see food multiplied to feed thousands from bread and a few small fish?
- Who will be willing to let their hearts break with the compassion of Jesus for the billions of physically and spiritually hungry people?
- Who will be the Moses and Daniel of our day, crying out until the answer comes, until the breakthrough manifests?
- Who will go and make God’s truth known? Who will boldly step out to proclaim the Gospel and speak the truth in a world where everyone is so easily offended because of their personal indulgences?
- Who will be willing to feel and share in the deep longing of the Father’s heart for communion with His people?
Let us faithfully call others to prayer, and pray that all Believers will be willing to pay the price of waiting on God and interceding for breakthroughs.
Practically on the ground
In our personal prayer times with the Lord we can ask for His mercy and grace to reach affected people. The enemy wants to steal, kill and destroy all of God’s creation, and especially people, since we are made in His image.
1. Give thanks: Teach children to give thanks for every meal they eat and to pray for those who do not have the same privilege. Give thanks for every meal that is available in your own home, for having a place to sleep, and for people who love you and care for you. Father, You are good all the time. (Psalm 136)
2. Wasted food: Often food is available, but there is a lack of additional resources for its transportation to the places of greatest need. Pray for the fast and effective transport and distribution of food. Father, may You be praised for provision in every place. (Genesis 22:14)
3. Corruption: Often food is available, but greed leads to those living with abundance just hoarding more for themselves, or requiring bribes and favours for food, or selling it for personal gain to the poor. Pray for these things to be exposed and the guilty to be punished. Father, let injustice be exposed. (Proverbs 21:8)
4. Potable Water: The provision of safe drinking water is a great challenge, especially in rural areas. Pray that more governments will allow projects to drill for water, and pray for the installation of water pipelines to reach vulnerable communities without expecting bribes or paybacks. Father, pour out Your living waters to the thirsty. (John 7:38)
5. Drought and crop failures: There are severe droughts in many regions of the world. Food-producing areas under drought have a devastating impact on food security for many nations. Fierce storms, pests and, for example, locust swarms devouring crops, also impact global food security. Pray for droughts to break and the protection of crops globally, and relief to come for the people. Father, have mercy on us for neglecting Your kingdom and serving other gods. (Haggai 1:9-11)
6. Pestilences, plagues and sicknesses: An outbreak is a sudden rise in cases of a disease in a particular place. An epidemic is a large outbreak. A pandemic is a global epidemic. Father, we cry out for mercy because of our many idolatries, our indulgences in sin, and our selfish desires. (Ezekiel 6:11, 12:16)
7. Wars and the refugee crisis: In addition to the impact of wars on economies and the provision of food, the global refugee population has also more than doubled over the past decade. Most of these people will never be able to return to their homeland and many die under the most horrific circumstances. Please read and pray by name and country for the largest refugee camps in the world: https://www.concernusa.org/story/largest-refugee-crises/
8. Hopelessness: The notion that poor people are stupid and lazy, is not true. Most people trapped in poverty simply have no way to escape from the cycle of poverty. Many can escape if there are people who are willing to help and to provide them with opportunities. Father, show me what I can do to become such a person who will help and declare the truth. (Isaiah 65)
9. Salvation: Sometimes we focus so much on poverty and need, that the difference the salvation of people will make is neglected. Pray for an inner boldness in yourself to share the gospel. Pray for churches to do more outreaches in poor communities, not only bringing food, but the Gospel. Father, send the labourers, for the harvest is ready. (John 14:16, Matthew 9:37-38)
10. Giving: Even when we do not have in abundance, it will always be possible to help somone else who has greater need. Make it a habit of giving in a way that does not expect anything from man. Father, help me to be obedient in giving to others with the right motive. (Acts 29:35; Matthew 6:2-4)
 Global Report on Food Crises 2022