This week we are praying for Oak Tree Ministries. Founded in March 2013, OTM labors with the people of Marks Village in fulfillment of God’s promise to raise up for Himself oak trees of righteousness for the display of His splendor. They do this by focusing on Reconciliation – people to God and people to people, Relief for crisis issues and chronic issues, Rehabilitation of people and community, and Relationships, which is at the foundation of everything they do. Oak Tree Ministries is about people, building relationships with them so that they can have a relationship with God through the power of the Gospel and then discipling them in their walk with God. Alex Leath is the director of Oak Tree Ministries. You can find out more about this great ministry by checking our their website.
Isaiah 61 – 1 The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners; 2 to proclaim the favorable year of the LORD and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn, 3 to grant those who mourn in Zion, giving them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting. So they will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.
4 Then they will rebuild the ancient ruins, they will raise up the former devastations; and they will repair the ruined cities, the desolations of many generations. 5 Strangers will stand and pasture your flocks, and foreigners will be your farmers and your vinedressers. 6 But you will be called the priests of the LORD; You will be spoken of as ministers of our God. You will eat the wealth of nations, and in their riches you will boast. 7 Instead of your shame you will have a double portion, and instead of humiliation they will shout for joy over their portion. Therefore they will possess a double portion in their land, everlasting joy will be theirs.
8 For I, the LORD, love justice, I hate robbery in the burnt offering; and I will faithfully give them their recompense and make an everlasting covenant with them. 9 Then their offspring will be known among the nations, and their descendants in the midst of the peoples. All who see them will recognize them because they are the offspring whom the LORD has blessed.
10 I will rejoice greatly in the LORD, my soul will exult in my God; for He has clothed me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. 11 For as the earth brings forth its sprouts, and as a garden causes the things sown in it to spring up, so the LORD GOD will cause righteousness and praise to spring up before all the nations.
Lord God, You alone are worthy of our praise. You are faithful and true. You cause all things to work according to Your perfect will. You make an everlasting covenant with those who are called by Your name. Your plans for us are always for our good and Your glory. You will not let injustice reign nor the ungodly go unpunished. You are a good God and a good Father. You are our source of hope and strength no matter what happens to us or in the world around us. Praise the Lord! Hallelujah!!!
We pray for the community of Marks Village, while giving thanks for the work You have done over the years there. Lord, You know how this community has struggled in the face of poverty and crime. Yet, You have not left them to be abandoned to those struggles. You have raised up people and ministries, equipped with the power of the Gospel, to bring about restoration for lives and for the community as a whole. We pray that You would bind up the broken-hearted, and declare freedom to the captives of poverty, violence, drugs, politics, and hate. Let Your beauty rise from the ashes of desolation. Reverse shame and poverty with honor and Your provision. We pray that Your Holy Spirit would dwell in the midst of this neighborhood, and that You would deliver people from the strongholds of division, hate, poverty, violence, that have been rooted there for so long.
This neighborhood was originally built in the early 1950s as a “whites-only” development. So, Lord, we confess and agree that segregation and the oppression of the black people of this city was unjust and sinful. We plead the blood of Jesus Christ over this community and in Jesus’ name, we uproot those foundations of hate and bigotry. We pray that You would give them recompense through the eternal covenant we have through the Gospel. We declare this community will be seen as one that is blessed by the Lord.
We lift up Oak Tree Ministries to You, Father, and thank You for the calling You have put on them to be Your Kingdom agents of change in this community. We pray that You would continue to pour out Your anointing on them to declare Your favor and Your freedom to the people of Marks Village. We pray that You would provide the resources they need to serve this community and to proclaim the Gospel. We pray that You would continue to guide Alex Leath, and give him wisdom and discernment as he and his team serve Marks Village. We often talk about an anointing as if it’s always great and exciting. Jesus used these very words from Isaiah 61:1 to announce Himself in the synagogue, and we see from His life that an anointing is hard, heavy, and requires one lays down one’s life for it. So we pray that You would strengthen the people of Oak Tree Ministries, as they carry this anointing and all of the challenges it brings with it. We pray that like Jesus, they would abide in You for their strength and joy, and that through You they would maintain their Kingdom perspective for Marks Village.
Thank You for hearing our prayers. Thank for Your anointing and for the strength to carry it. Amen.