Thursday, February 5, 2009

CHPP Daily Brief - February 5, 2009

In This Issue
· The Daily Brief
The Middle East in Focus
The First 100 Days
Redecorating Chairs on the Titanic
Obama and Gitmo
Good News Corner

Capitol Hill Prayer Partners
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The Daily Brief Thursday, February 5, 2009

"The eternal God is a dwelling place, And underneath are the everlasting arms." (Deut. 33:27)

1. Madoff Tipster Blasts SEC, Says He Feared for His Safety -

Harry Markopolos, a whistleblower who struggled for a decade to get regulators to stop the operations of disgraced money manager Bernie Madoff, slammed the Securities and Exchange Commission in his first appearance before Congress.After the SEC ignored his attempts to alert the agency to Madoff's apparent fraud, Markopolos said he feared for his physical safety after his attempts to alert the SEC were ignored.

∙ Pray that the Lord will clean up the SEC so that it provides the oversight it was designed to do, and remove any corruption that might be present within the commission.

∙ "Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin." (Psalm 51:2)


U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had surgery for pancreatic cancer at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City. The Supreme Court sends along this information: "According to Dr. Murray Brennan, the attending surgeon, Justice Ginsburg will likely remain in the hospital approximately 7-10 days. Justice Ginsburg had no symptoms prior to the incidental discovery of the lesion during a routine annual check-up in late January at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland. A Computerized Axial Tomography (CAT) Scan revealed a small tumor, approximately 1 cm across, in the center of the pancreas."

- Pray for healing and full recovery for Justice Ginsburg. May she find the "peace that passeth all understanding" during this time. Amen.

- "The Lord hears the prayer of the righteous." (Proverbs 15:29)

3. House Passes $32B SCHIP Health Bill - AP

The House overwhelmingly approved a bill extending health coverage to 4 million uninsured children, giving President Barack Obama a much-needed win on health care and taking a first step toward his promise of universal coverage.The Democratic-controlled House passed the bill 290-135 on Wednesday, with 40 Republicans backing it. Obama plans to sign it into law later in the day.

∙ Lord, we pray that this program will help children, but that our leadership will be unable to expand it further to become socialized health care for all. Let our leaders see the truth about the inefficiency and high cost of socialized medicine.

∙ "Oh, send out Your light and Your truth! Let them lead me;" (Psalm 43:3a)

4. Legislation Introduced to Seat Franken -

A Minnesota legislator has introduced legislation to change state law and immediately certify Democrat Al Franken as the junior U. S. senator from Minnesota, despite Franken's ongoing court battle with GOP Sen. Norm Coleman over who won the election.Minnesota Rep. Phyllis Kahn is asking the state legislature to vote on H.F. 0493, a bill that allows provisional certification of the winner of an election while legal disputes are contested in court.

∙ Pray that the legislators of Minnesota will have the strength to wait until the end of the review of the 5000 ballots brought before the court yesterday before seating Mr. Franken. Pray that justice will prevail in this election controversy.

"A man's heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps." (Proverbs 16:9)

5. Auto Suppliers Request $20.5B in U.S. Aid - Reuters

U.S. auto parts suppliers are asking for up to $20.5 billion in federal aid to survive the worst industry downturn in decades, the Automotive News reported on Wednesday.

∙ Father, as more and more industries hold out their hand for government money, we can see government control coming to every corner of our business arena. We pray for those businesses whose integrity and honor will not allow them to compromise for the sake of bailout money.

∙ "All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the spirits." (Proverbs 16:2)

6. Iraqi Prime Minister's Party Wins Big in Country's Elections - AP

The Iraqi prime minister's allies finished first in races for ruling councils in Baghdad and eight other provinces during last weekend's provincial elections, officials said Thursday - a strong endorsement of his campaign to restore order in this war-ravaged country.

∙ We praise You, Lord, that this election was a success, with little violence, and that US allies won the vast majority of races. We ask for Your continued strengthening of the Iraqi government: that peace, safety, and stability would cover their nation.

∙ "He has redeemed my soul in peace from the battle which was against me, for there were many against me." (Psalm 55:18)

7. Four Million Without Drinking Water in Drought-Stricken China - AP

China declared an emergency Thursday in eight provinces suffering a serious drought that has left nearly 4 million people without proper drinking water and is threatening millions of acres of crops.

∙ Lord we pray for a move of Your Holy Spirit over China, bringing the Living Water like a mighty flood over their people. We pray for the safety of Christians in drought-stricken areas of China, and for Your provision for them. We ask for the drought to be broken, along with the spiritual blackness over the entire nation.

"Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you. I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh." (Ezekiel 36:25-)

8. Obama evokes church/state divide at National Prayer Breakfast - Reuters

Religion's role in U.S. politics was on full display on Thursday as President Barack Obama spoke and prayed at the annual National Prayer Breakfast. Some of Obama's remarks about the new office are sure to raise eyebrows in those conservative Christian circles. For example: "The goal of this office will not be to favor one religious group over another - or even religious groups over secular groups. It will simply be to work on behalf of those organizations that want to work on behalf of our communities, and to do so without blurring the line that our founders wisely drew between church and state."

To read the full article go here: evokes-churchstate-divide-at-national-prayer-breakfast

- In the midst of these very confusing days, call forth a spirit of clarity to be released in and through the Office of the President of the United States. Let us not lose sight of the foundational principles of the freedom of religion upon which our nation has rested since our beginnings.

Ask the Lord to reveal to all of us, including our president, the difference between the "freedom from religion" and the "freedom of religion." Finally, pray over the mission of the newly- revamped Office of Faith-Based Initiatives and Neighborhood Partnerships -- that it would be utilized according to the perfect will of God for our nation.

- "You will also decree a thing, and it will be established for you . . ." (Job 22:28a NAS)

The Middle East in Focus

The Middle East in Focus This week, for all the headlines cited below, please join us in proclaiming THIS DECREE: "The house of the wicked shall be overthrown . .." (Proverbs 14:11a)

1. Hamas TV 'bunny' martyred calling for jihad against Israel - ICEJ News

Hamas TV star 'Assoud' the bunny (MEMRI)In the concluding episode of a children's television show that aired last month on the Hamas owned Al-Aqsa television station, the show's host, a bunny named Assoud, was martyred by Israelis as he called for the liberation of Tel Aviv and Haifa. According to a report from MEMRI, the station has continued to broadcast from a mobile unit after its building was destroyed during the recent fighting in Gaza. The last show in the series features Assoud dying in a hospital bed after returning to the station to retrieve "gifts, books and magazines which belong to the children of Palestine" only to caught up in the bombing by "the treacherous, Zionist enemy who kills everything." Assoud pleads with the co-host visiting him to tell the children of "Palestine" to "never forget Jerusalem" and to tell them that he died a hero's death, as a martyr. Assoud is the third host of The Pioneers of Tomorrow, a show modeled after Sesame Street and Barney & Friends. The show's first host was beaten to death by Israeli soldiers and the second host died "a martyr's death" by succumbing to an illness after Israeli security refused to allow him to leave Gaza for a life saving operation.

2. Wanted terrorist commander killed in overnight raid - ICEJ News

A top Islamic Jihad terror commander believed to be planning an attack on Israeli civilians was killed by IDF special forces in the northern West Bank town of Kabatiya on Wednesday.

3. Global anti-Semitism continues after IDF offensive in Gaza - ICEJ News

Dutch police on Wednesday found two bullet holes from a shooting aimed at a mental health clinic run by the Amsterdam Jewish community, the sixth violent act against Jewish institutions and buildings in Holland known to police since Israel began Operation Cast Lead. No one was injured in the shooting and no witnesses have come forward so far. Meanwhile, after igniting outrage from Jews and Catholics alike, the Vatican on Wednesday reversed its position and demanded that an ultra-conservative Bishop who denied the Holocaust publicly recant his views before being reinstated into the Roman Catholic Church.

4. Israeli navy stops Lebanese aid ship bound for Gaza - ICEJ News

Israeli naval forces boarded and took control of a cargo ship carrying activists and supplies from Lebanon to Gaza on Thursday, bringing the vessel to port in Ashdod. The IDF confirmed that troops from Israeli gunboats seized control of the ship after issuing several warnings to its crew to steer clear of Gazan coastal waters. The eleven activists and journalists on board, including several Arab TV crews, initially agreed to sail to Egypt but quickly reversed course and made a break for the Gaza coast. The IDF said seizing the ship was necessary because the cargo contents were unknown, it had sailed from a country hostile to Israel, and "the actions of the boat crew raised suspicion."

The First 100 Days

The First 100 Days: DAY 17

"The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD; he directs it like a watercourse wherever he pleases." (Proverbs 21:1)

1. Obama Plans Review of Faith-Based Policies

The possibility of hiring restrictions for religious groups that receive taxpayer dollars will undergo a thorough legal review before the President decides on guidelines.

2. Panetta Discloses $700G in Speaking, Consulting Fees

The White House's nominee for Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Leon Panetta, has earned more than $700,000 in speaking and consulting fees since the beginning of 2008, with some of the payments coming from troubled financial firms and from a firm that invests in contractors for federal national security agencies, according to financial disclosures released Wednesday and reviewed by the Wall Street Journal.

3. Obama Justice Nominee Used to Represent Playboy

Senators might want to hold David Ogden's confirmation hearing after the kids go to bed. That's because the man in line to become No. 2 at the nation's top law enforcement agency was once a strident defender of Playboy and other purveyors of nudity. And some critics are drawing attention to his risque legal work ahead of his Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Thursday. In one case, Ogden paved the way for the blind to enjoy Playboy at the Library of Congress.

4. Obama's Vetting Process Draws Scrutiny After Cabinet Withdrawals

Questions have been raised about Obama's vetting process after three of his nominees withdrew their nominations over embarrassing revelations. (All headlines in this section come from Fox News.)

Redecorating Chairs on the Titanic

The resolve of House Republicans seems to be contagious. Their Senate colleagues, who are next in line to consider Obama's pork-and-payoff bill, are promising to stoke the fires of opposition. According to the latest polls, momentum is on the GOP's side, as more and more Americans are showing concern over the $1.1 trillion price tag.

On top of an already objectionable list, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) padded the bill with $248 million for furniture at the new headquarters of Homeland Security, $160 million for "paid volunteers" at the Corporation for National and Community Service, and $6 billion to make federal buildings "environmentally- friendly."

Which of these constitute a spending "emergency"? As Karl Rove pointed out, it's only February 2, and Congress is poised to spend $317 billion of domestic, discretionary spending in one bill. In fiscal year 2008, Congress spent $391 billion total! The bottom line is that liberal leaders are trying to spend money we don't have on things America doesn't need. To make your blood really boil, visit tomorrow for an updated catalogue of the bill. (Family Research Council)

Obama and Gitmo

Obama Admits GITMO Prisoners May Kill Again

We got a stunning glimpse into President Obama's mindset yesterday when he told NBC the following: "Can we guarantee that they're [GITMO prisoners] not going to try to participate in another attack? No. But what I can guarantee is that if we don't uphold our Constitution and our values . . . that will make us less safe. And that will be a recruitment toll for organizations like Al Qaeda." Once again the president, educated in some of America's most elite schools, is demonstrating he has no clue about the nature of America's jihadist enemies.

Does he really believe that the jihadists who throw acid in the faces of girls who want to go to school; who behead civilians like Daniel Pearl; who send homicide bombers into synagogues, restaurants and buses to blow up Jews; who shot Russian school children in the back in Beslan; who use civilians as human shields in Gaza; and who are right now plotting to kill a hundred thousand Americans with weapons of mass destruction - does he really think they care one iota about whether a prisoner in GITMO is given the constitutional protections afforded American citizens?

If these thugs ever defeat us, our Constitution is the first thing they would burn! They have fought us in Iraq and Afghanistan to make sure their fellow Muslims never have a chance to experience the freedom and liberty we take for granted here.

The president has no idea what we are facing, as evidenced by his "apology" to the Muslim world in his first television interview. He is signaling breathtaking weakness every day - and that is why we are less safe! (Gary Bauer; End-of-Day; 2/2/09)

Good News Corner

Local Church Takes a Tuneful Message to Prison Inmates

As roughly a dozen jail inmates clad in red uniforms looked on, Beatrice Randolph clutched the cell bars in front of her and belted out a hymn encouraging them to cheer up and "live in the sunshine." Upon completing the song "Father Along," Randolph, tears welling in her eyes, turned away from the bars and slowly walked back to her place among other members of her church choir, as prisoners applauded.

Choir members from House of Prayer United Pentecostal Church in Thibodaux performed various praise and worship numbers Sunday night during a first of its kind mini-concert at the Lafourche jail designed to provide inmates with not only entertainment but a measure of hope."This may be the first time people tell them they care about them," Lafourche jail Warden Alan Abadie said. "Maybe this will teach them to have better self-respect."

Abadie thanked House of Prayer pastor Ronnie Melancon for being receptive to the idea of the jailhouse ministry through song. Tammy Theriot, coordinator of inmate services and programs, organized the event.Using two acoustic guitars, a keyboard and more than a dozen voices, the House of Prayer choir provided uplifting sounds for inmates throughout the jail.

For much of the night, the group performed out of sight from the prisoners, whose whoops and whistles of approval were heard, even when they themselves could not be seen. Some inmates cried. Others enthusiastically sang along.Inmates on Cell Block D, all of whom are awaiting trial on felony offenses, said Randolph's song of redemption resonated with them. "Due to the dark days we usually spend in here, that was pretty enlightening," said 35-year-old Christopher Johnson of Thibodaux, who faces a murder charge. "That brought a lot of joy to people's hearts."

Johnson said his favorite song of the night contained the words, "I am a friend of God; he calls me friend." "We have all fallen by the wayside," Johnson said. "It's not about falling, it's about getting back up and dusting yourself off again."Some inmates spoke of what they described as a whirlwind of positive change is occurring at the jail. "It doesn't make sense to be in here trying to rehabilitate, if there's nothing to help you change," said Derrick Odomes, 30, of Thibodaux, charged with first-degree murder. Odomes credited Abadie for the improvements to the jail.

More church performances will occur on a periodic basis, Abadie added, and an inmate choir could possibly be formed in the near future. "It's hard to make a 180-degree change overnight," the warden said. "You have to change 10 degrees at a time." (; Houma, LA) [Read more]