January 2, 2021
“For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.” 2 Chronicles 16:9 (NIV)
The first thing that happens when you visit the doctor is a nurse checks your vitals: your heartbeat and blood pressure. It doesn’t matter why you’re there, but they always monitor your heart. The reason is that your heartbeat and blood pressure readings are an important indicator of your overall health.
As we enter 7 Days of Prayer and Fasting, it’s important to check the vitals of our faith, which is our heart. In the Bible, the heart is the emotional center of a person. God places a high importance on the spiritual condition of our hearts. The Bible asks us to “examine our heart” and to “guard your heart for it is the wellspring of life.” God’s promise comes to us when we fully commit our lives to Him; the promise is predicated by the premise of our devotion to Him. He is roaming the earth to build our hearts and make them stronger. When worship and prayer hold priority in our lives, we become fully committed to Him.
God, I pray that you would strengthen my heart and help me to be fully committed to you. I declare my complete dependence upon you. Without you, I can do nothing. Jesus, I ask that You forgive me of my sins. Holy Spirit, regenerate my heart and make me new again. Give me a renewed passion and a fresh revelation of Your Word. Would You guard my heart against the evil attacks of the enemy and restore my heart to exactly how You designed it to be. Give me the strength and courage to continue in prayer and fasting for the next 7 days. In the name of Your great and glorious son, Jesus Christ. Amen
January 3, 2021
“I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession, and thanksgiving be made for all people—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.” 1 Timothy 2:1-4 (NIV)
Despite the intensity that Americans feel about politics, the primary responsibility of a follower of Christ is to pray. Paul exhorts Timothy that we should pray for leaders in multiple ways - including giving thanks for them.
Christians should not restrict their prayers
only to the government leaders or politicians they like or those from their own
party. Who knows what God might do, especially if we pray for those leaders
with whom we disagree.
We are encouraged to pray for “all of those in authority”. That includes leaders of government, but also our spiritual leaders. Those who serve in church leadership face many unique challenges and are called to a high level of sacrifice. For this reason, we should lift them up in prayer.
Dear Lord, we pray for our government leaders and to thank You for them. We pray they would govern wisely to facilitate peaceful cities, states, and a nation that will provide an atmosphere to advance the spread of Your Good News into all regions of the world. We pray that our leaders would seek the right ways of governing for the public good. We pray that You would help us to see politicians as You see them—through eyes of love, grace, and compassion, so we may have a heart to pray for them regularly. Lord, today I specifically pray this for the U.S. President, Donald Trump; Oklahoma Governor, Kevin Stitt; and Elk City Mayor, Nick Archer. May their spirits unite with yours and rise above their minds as they live and lead. We also pray for our pastors as they lead us spiritually. Give them the strength and passion they need to lead the church You desire to see. Bless their health, their families, and their marriages.
In Jesus’ name, AMEN!
January 4, 2021
Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper. Jeremiah 29:7 (NIV)
We believe God not only wants us to build a great church, but a great city as well! He has placed us in Elk City for a specific purpose and for a time such as this.
In the above Scripture, we see the prophet Jeremiah charging the Israelites to take responsibility for where they live through prayer. The prophet is telling them to pray that God would grant peace and prosperity to the city they find themselves in while exiled. If Scripture gives them this direction, how much more should the body of Christ pray for the city they live in?
There is something unique that takes place when we take responsibility for our city through prayer. Let's lift up our city today and believe that it would turn toward God like never before.
God, I pray You would do a significant work in our city. I ask that Your power and presence would fill its businesses, schools, municipalities, and even the streets. Let Your peace rest on where we live. Let our city be a light in a dark world for You. Fill our city with Your peace and prosperity. Guide our leaders to make decisions that reflect Your heart. We ask Your will be done in Elk City as it is in heaven. Guide, protect, and change our city for Your glory. We ask these things in Your name, Amen.
January 5, 2021
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14
It is an understatement to say our nation needs healing. We continually experience new waves of racial injustice, natural disasters, terrorist attacks, school shootings, issues of gender confusion, and the list goes on. But God has given us an invitation to pray for the healing of our nation.
He made a promise to King Solomon that if the people of God would…
Seek His face
Turn from their wicked ways
Then he would…
Hear from heaven
Forgive their sin
Heal the land
This promise given to Solomon is given to us today.
God, we confess and repent of the sins of America. We have turned away from You as a nation and we ask You for mercy. We appeal to You for our President, Vice President, members of the Cabinet, and members of both the House and the Senate, to make decisions that will lead toward a more righteous, peaceful, and orderly America. We also ask that these leaders guide us to ways that represent You and Your ways. We pray for the unity of our nation and an end to racial and political divides. May we be a nation that brings glory to Your Name. I pray these things in the mighty name of Jesus, Amen.
January 6, 2021
…I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days. Joel 2:28-29 (NIV)
A.W Tozer said, “I want here to boldly assert that it is my happy belief that every Christian can have a copious outpouring of the Holy Spirit in a measure far beyond that received at conversion, and I might also say, far beyond that enjoyed by the rank and file of orthodox believers today.”
In other words, God has more for us! His Spirit is alive and available to transform and empower us for an abundant life with supernatural impact in the world around us!
Do you believe that an abundant outpouring of the Holy Spirit? Is it your desire to receive this in a measure beyond what you are currently experiencing? Are you ready to be used in new, exciting, and supernatural ways? Ask for it!
Dear Lord, thank You for Jesus’ incarnation, life, death, and resurrection. Thank You that He left the gift of His Spirit to reside in us! We confess we regularly miss the great opportunity of being filled up by your Spirit. We forget, dismiss, or neglect instead of receiving this incredible gift.
I commit today to a posture of openness, an attitude of welcoming You in, a spirit of urgency and discontent, that nothing less than a life full and overflowing with You will suffice. Mold me. Fill me. Use me. Clear out any obstruction that would keep Your outpouring from being an infilling. In Jesus’ name, AMEN!
January 7, 2021
And the two will become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate. Mark 10:8-9 (NIV)
We believe in the power of Godly, unified, and healthy marriages. We believe marriage is a gift God gave His creation. As special as this amazing blessing is, for all marriages, there are some seasons more difficult than others. In those seasons, it may be difficult to see the true blessing of marriage.
Some reading this will find themselves happily married, unhappily married, divorced, or waiting for the person God has for them to marry. Regardless of where we might find ourselves, we can make a difference by praying for the marriages in our church.
Today, let's choose to pray for unity, protection, health, and intimacy for all of the marriages within the church family. For those whose marriages are struggling, be encouraged because your spiritual family is praying to God for you today.
God, we pray for all of the marriages within our church. We ask for every marriage to experience a supernatural bond of unity. For every marriage that is struggling, we ask that You would administer forgiveness, clarity, and restoration. For every marriage that finds themselves in a good season, we ask You to continue to bless them. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
January 8, 2021
Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:18–20 (NIV)
Every gospel in the Bible has a form of the Great Commission. One of the last things Jesus says to His disciples was that they are called to make more disciples. The very nature and DNA of Christianity, its mission and focus, is to reach those who are far from God. It is fascinating that the church is the only organization that exists for its non-members. Let that sink in. We exist for those who are not yet members of the Church!
The longer a church exists, the more likely it is to focus on its members, rather than those who are far from God. As Christians, we must resist this urge. We must know and understand our spiritual growth should always lead us to reach those who don’t know Christ. Since we live in a post-modern, post-truth, and post-Christian culture, we must be intentional about presenting the gospel in a way in which our culture understands.
Heavenly Father, I pray for those who are far from You. Give us the courage and the power to reach those who don’t know You. I pray for my family members who have walked away from You. Draw them back to Your love through the power of Your Holy Spirit. God, let there be an awakening in our city, our county, and our country. As the world gets darker, I pray our light shines brighter. In the name of your great and glorious son, Jesus Christ. Amen.