Prayer and Mission in a First Nations' community of Canada

Written by James Brackpool from England living is Weyburn, Saskatchewam.

“For with God nothing shall be impossible” Luke 1:37

This was the theme verse for a kids club session the youth group ran for the Bigstone Community children in La Ronge, Saskatchewan over the long weekend in May. In context it is the Angel Gabriel talking to Mary about her giving birth to the Messiah, to God’s son. Talk about life changing situations!

Bigstone is considered by some to be one of the worst places to live in Canada. It is a modern day Nazareth. I can hear the voices now saying “what good can come out of Big stone?” I have to say that to be honest at face value, not a lot. Alcohol and drugs and other things keep the community captive to all sorts of slavery. It seems that there is no way for the community to change.

But “..with God nothing shall be impossible.”

There is a family who are pastoring there and stuff is happening that only God could possibly be leading to make it happen. The church I am a part of in Weyburn has been supporting the community for years

On the youth mission trip to Bigstone, someone was… … saying that there is no point in just throwing money at it, they need people helping there not just our money. Now I should just point out that we were there to help not to “throw money at anyone” especially roles of quarters or the soon to be extinct pennies, that would really hurt. But I understand that they need regular people helping with a number of different ministries and simply fellowship but even that is not going to change things BUT

With God nothing shall be impossible.

There is a justice issue which I am sure many people already know about but perhaps I am just naive or just simply new to this since I moved here in 2007, but the majority of the money (in certain first nation communities) does not appear to go to the people who need it but in fact lines the pockets of the chief’s or band governments who are supposed to funnel it to the right place. I was shown where band government leaders live and they live in luxury. The families on the reserve live in disproportionate houses for the size of the families that live there. One family had ten people living in what my dad probably would park his car into in England; it’s not a big car either.

Now this is a justice issue based on a heart issue. I have been thinking is there anything I can do for this to change? The only thing I can think about is to pray. Well to start there anyways. I understand that when it comes to the governance of the first nations of Canada, it is a controversial and sticky subject that I am not even going to risk confronting on my own without God’s help but surely there must be away to see this situation change.

“With God nothing shall be impossible.”

Of course I should make clear that there are probably many band leaders who are living with integrity and making sure that the money they receive goes to the needs of their communities and who knows perhaps this is the minority are have been corrupted by greed in this way. But even so I strongly desire to see an outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the Bigstone community as well as the others in La Ronge, and to all first nations of Canada. It has been amazing to see reconciliation happening between the first nations people and the people involved in the residential schools and all the other atrocities that have occurred in the past but and correct me if I’m wrong, we need to join together in praying for reconciliation to happen within the first nations of Canada and for justice. I don’t know if I am the first to say this and I definitely won’t be the last but let us pray that God would pour out his Holy Spirit throughout all first nations’ people in Canada who live on and off reservation. May we see Revival happen in the church to wake us up for sure but to see God bring the rest not part of the church to Him also across this nation.

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