Prayer Week of
Thy Kingdom Come
“Prayer is the church knowing God’s heart and opening its mouth to ask for what is in God’s heart. If the church does not do this, it does not have much use on earth. If a prayer is uttered according to God’s will, it is the most powerful thing. For the church to pray
means that it finds out God’s will and speaks out this will. Prayer
is not just asking God for something. For the church to pray means that it stands on God’s side to declare that man wants what God
wants. If the church declares this, the declaration will be effectual.” — Watchman Nee
We are excited to kick off our 2017 Week of Prayer! This year’s theme is “Thy Kingdom Come,” praying for the glory and expansion of God’s kingdom in multiple facets of our lives. We encourage you to spend at least 30 minutes each day in prayer using this Prayer Guide to help. We have included prayer requests that are specific to ministries at Bethel, but be sure to include personal requests for yourself and your loved ones in your prayer time. We will also host 15-minute Facebook Live prayer meetings on our Facebook account. These will happen at noon, Monday-Friday during the Week of Prayer. They will feature several church leaders and pastors praying through the Guide, and praying for requests in real time as they are received through comments. Be sure to like our page on Facebook so you can participate. We will also send out daily emails through our Bethel eNews list — if you would like to receive these, sign up at the bottom of bethelweb.org. The week will end with a Feast Prayer Gwathering at the Crown Point Campus on Sunday, February 26. We will enjoy a potluck dinner and night of community prayer. Sign up online.
HOW TO PRAY FOR 30 MINUTES
One of the deepest struggles of prayer is not a lack of desire to seek the will of God, but a fight against the distractions of this life. Our hearts often long to meet with God in prayer, but our minds are more concerned with shopping lists, vacation plans, or the weather. How do we fight against these things that lead our minds away from fruitful prayer? THE IMPORTANCE OF PRAYER To begin, we must be convinced of the importance of prayer. This convincing will come by the Spirit through the Word. We must believe that God has called us to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess. 5:17) and to “pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints” (Eph. 6:18, NIV). Until we understand that this is God’s will for us, we will continue to approach his throne of grace in a casual manner. So start
with the Word of truth and allow it to transform your mind in understanding the importance of prayer. We want to see Bethel become a church convinced of the need and privilege to pray, and we want to exercise practical means for accomplishing this purpose. Let us take up our God-given call to prayer during this special week before us. PRAYER GUIDE This Guide has been designed to lead you in personal worship through Scripture reading, meditation, and prayer. We hope that it will help you have a focused time of prayer for at least 30 minutes each day. It features devotionals to lead you in praying for the expansion of God’s kingdom in different aspects of your life and our world. The goal is not to have hundreds of people simply asking God for things, but to have the Bethel family worshiping the Lord and acknowledging dependence upon him in every way. He certainly wants to hear our requests, but he wants to hear them as we praise him for his greatness and ask for them out of a profound sense of reliance upon him. Use the Prayer Guide simply as a tool to aid you in coming before the God of glory. Sit in silence and meditate upon the splendor of his majesty. Drink deeply of his grace. Quiet your heart before him and allow him to cleanse your heart of sin. As you request his work here at Bethel and in your life, do so out of a heart that is needy of God himself. ADDITIONAL SUGGESTIONS Find a quiet place away from distractions. Find a prayer position that is comfortable, but doesn’t put you to sleep. While lying down is comfortable, it’s not going to foster profitable praying for most of us. Change your posture throughout prayer. Pray on your knees, then stand, then sit, then walk. Utilize whatever posture keeps you awake and focused. Go on a prayer walk. Pray with someone else—your spouse, family, or a small group. Pray for those areas of ministry where you are specifically involved. Pray for any personal matters in your life, or the lives of your family and friends. Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations are taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Additional Scripture quotations taken from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Take some time to write down any praises or requests you have. Write down how you would like to grow during this week in your prayer walk. Are you more of an artist? Use this space to sketch out how God has been working in your life lately.
98. What is prayer? Prayer is an offering up of our desires unto God [a], for things agreeable to
his will [b], in the name of Christ [c], with confession of our sins [d], and thankful acknowledgement of his mercies. [e] [a]. Psalm 10:17; 62:8; Matthew 7:7-8 [b]. I John 5:14 [c]. John 16:23-24 [d]. Psalm 32:5-6; Daniel 9:4-19; I John 1:9 [e]. Psalm 103:1-5; 136; Philippians 4:6
- Westminster Shorter Catechism
Day 1 Thy Kingdom Come
In the character and affections of believers I heard a trusted spiritual advisor years ago explain how he regularly prayed for God to stir up holy affections in his heart. It struck me because he was and is a man of passion for God. I don’t know that I’d ever considered asking God to create those desires in my heart. How helpful this can be, particularly to start the day. We all wake up spiritually sleepy. The spiritual victories of the day before are no guarantee for success today. Each day spiritually rises and falls with where my heart is on that day. Why not ask God for a new inner relish and desire for what he wants in me and through me today? Praying to advance God’s kingdom in your own heart means praying that you would want what he desires far more than anything you desire yourself. It means that you pray for his will and not yours, and truly mean it. Here are few passages that reiterate this theme: “Teach me your way, LORD, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name.” (Psalm 86:11 NIV) “And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matthew 22:37) These words can be self-fulfilling prayers for us. I find when I ask God to give me holy desires, the very act of asking for them stirs increasing desire for them within me. God delights to answer prayers offered according to his will. Certainly loving him authentically from the heart is a prayer according to his will. May today be a day of high and holy affections for God! by: Steve DeWitt, Senior Pastor
Application What are things that you hold on to instead of God’s desires? Pray for God’s desires to reign in your heart. Read and reread Matthew 22:37. Ask God to show you things you may be putting before his desires, and ask for his help in putting him first.
Bethel Prayer requests MEN’S MINISTRIES Pray that the men’s small groups would feature gospel-centered community, lifechanging Bible study, prayer, and accountability. Pray that this ministry would grow men into leaders who provide godly and spiritual leadership in their homes, their workplaces, and our church. Pray that men would effectively develop relationships with unbelievers to further God’s kingdom. Pray that God would raise up leaders for many new men’s small groups. WOMEN’S MINISTRIES Pray for Gail Morris, Director of Women’s Ministries, Lauri Mollema, Assistant Director of Women’s Ministries, and Ellen Anderson, Women’s Ministries Assistant. Pray that God would use our women’s small groups and Bible studies to equip our women in the Word. Pray that God would raise up women to lead and serve him with passion and joy. Pray that women would be compelled to share Christ with those in our community who are far from God.
Write a prayer to God expressing your desire for his will in your life. Thank him for who he is and his promises in your life.
Day 2 Thy Kingdom Come
in our families, marriages, and relationships One of the most challenging tests of the Christian life and kingdom living is in the home. It is there that our own depravity is exposed in its rawest form; there’s no time to put on a good face or prepare a proper response. In the home, life comes at us abruptly and without professional or social protocol. Let us pray to advance God’s kingdom in our homes by pursuing biblical roles. Husbands, wrap all your interaction with your wives in the love that the Apostle Paul commanded should be “as Christ loved the church” (Ephesians 5:28). Serve her, sacrifice for her, inspire her toward holiness. And while you’re at it, how about taking it one step further and loving her as your own body? (Ephesians 5:25). Pray that you could daily show your wife this love. Wives, why not pray today that you would advance God’s kingdom by showing your husband authentic respect? This does not mean pretending to respect him for things which persistently irritate you. Rather, diligently look for things that you do respect about him. Did he take a shower this morning and go to work? Tell him he looks nice and works hard. Did he comfort your kids in some way today? Tell him you appreciate his compassionate heart. Did he lead the family in a spiritual discussion or prayer? Tell him you are thankful for his leadership in your home. You will get yourself a better man. Pray that you will be these things for him. “A true prayer is an inventory of needs, a catalog of necessities, an exposure of secret wounds, a revelation of hidden poverty. True prayer is measured
by weight, not by length. A single groan before God may have more fullness of prayer in it than a fine oration of great length.”
– Charles Spurgeon
How about your relationship to your kids? Pray that you would advance God’s kingdom by modeling authentic character before your children. When they see your selfless living, they will be prompted to reflect your selfless approach to life in their own choices. Pray that you will advance God’s kingdom by living out God’s priorities in the home.
Application If you are married, pray over Ephesians 5 with your spouse. Pray that you both would follow the commands listed here, and discuss ways that you can show love and respect to one another.
STUDENT MINISTRY Pray for Mike Wittig, Pastor of Student Ministries; Dexter Harris, Gary Director of Campus Life; and Bill Hillegonds, Cedar Lake Director of Student Ministries. Pray for Verge and Epic Student Ministries to reach unchurched students with the gospel.
If you have children, talk with them about how God’s kingdom can be a priority in your family. Pray that you will model a committment to prioritize the kingdom.
Pray for new student leaders and volunteers at all campuses.
If you are single, pray over your relationships with your family, friends and coworkers. Pray to be a light to them, and to have a kingdom-minded relationship with each person.
Pray for blessing and effectiveness in student events and trips.
Bethel Prayer requests KIDS’ MINISTRIES Pray for Melissa Anderson, Director of Kids’ Ministries; Tom Scibbe, Assistant Director of Kids’ Ministries; and for the Kids’ Ministries Coordinators: Angi Briggs (Gary), Ruthie Hankins (Hobart/Portage), and Ellyn Krusza (Cedar Lake). Pray for Joy Kats, Kids’ Ministries Assistant. Pray that God will use our kids’ ministries to teach kids how to live their lives in view of God’s Word. Pray for kids’ hearts to be turned toward the gospel and that they will see their need for Christ. Pray that God will provide additional volunteers who are passionate about showing Christ’s love to our kids each week. Pray for our teachers and volunteers that their relationship with Christ will grow stronger. Pray for continued safety and security in the kids’ ministries.
Pray for continued teamwork among the student ministry leaders. Pray for the graduating students as they pursue God’s will for their lives after high school. COUNSELING AND FAMILY MINISTRIES Pray for Gary Butler, Pastor of Counseling and Family Ministries, and Samantha Stooksbury, Family Ministries Assistant/Student Ministries Assistant. Pray for parents to have passion for Jesus and wisdom to disciple their children well. Pray for families to be strengthened through consistent family devotions and prayer times. Pray for marriages to be centered on Christ and focused on serving and loving one another. Pray for struggling marriages to be reconciled and for spouses to forgive freely as needed.
Day 3 Thy Kingdom Come
in our Stewardship Practices and Priorities The word stewardship means “the job of supervising or taking care of something.” We all have something that we take care of daily. It may be our bodies, families, jobs, houses … the list could go on. Often, we think of these things as ours and ours alone as if we determine their destiny. But in fact, all things come from God. Colossians 1:16 says, “For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.” We often know this in our heads and say it with our mouths, but we fail to show it in our daily lives. We are like busy beavers taking care of things, trying to control everything, and then moving ahead to the next thing without consulting God about we should actually be doing. What if we lived our daily life by trusting him with all things? What if we started every day by first asking him what he wants us to do? What if we surrendered all that we have to his will and trusted him to take care of all things like he promises he will? It is not by our strength and will that the kingdom of God will advance, but by God’s grace, love, and power. So allow him to rule completely in your life, and steward your time, talents, and treasures in the way that is pleasing to him. Everything we have is a gift and we must use that gift in the way God intended.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication
with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
- Philippians 4:6-8
Together, let’s be amazing stewards of everything that God has given us. Let us do it with glad, obedient, and loving hearts for the furthering of his kingdom. Let us pray that we rightly prioritize our resources for kingdom purposes. Let us pray that we not invest our time and opportunities first in the kingdoms of the world, but in the kingdom of God. Let us pray that his kingdom would have first place in our hearts above all else.
Application What are some areas of your life where you struggle to relinquish control to God? Prayerfully surrender these to him. What are some ways that you can be more generous with your time? Your talents? Your treasures?
Bethel Prayer requests SMALL GROUPS MINISTRIES Pray for Chris Whetstone, Pastor of Small Groups, and Jessica Van Zyl, Small Groups Ministries Assistant and Receptionist. Pray for people to feel a genuine sense of care and connectedness through their small groups. Pray that our small groups will help people experience genuine, lasting, spiritual growth. Pray for unconnected Bethel attendees to take steps to become connected with a small group. Pray that God would raise up new small group leaders. Pray for small group leaders to be encouraged in their responsibilities of helping people walk more closely with Christ. WORSHIP MINISTRIES Pray for Dustin Rouse, Pastor of Worship; Steven Burkholder, Director of Music; Leianne Otto, Worship Leader at Gary; Parker Douglas, Worship Resident; Aaron Arkkelin, Technical Director; Jonathan “JP” Parker, Audio Engineer; Adam Davis, Media Assistant; and Amanda Wilson, Worship Ministries Assistant. Pray that Bethel Church will have God-centered, Christ-exalting, and Spiritempowered times of corporate worship and singing. Pray for the church to understand worship as a consistent lifestyle of adoring God with our words, thoughts, and actions. Pray for the bands, vocal teams, choir, and tech teams at all campuses to glorify God and edify his church. Pray for the worship leaders to exhibit worshipful hearts.
Write a short prayer thanking God for all he has given you to trustfully steward.
Day 4 Thy Kingdom Come in Our Church
“Churches have a limited impact on society because they fail to understand that the goal of the church is not the church itself, but the kingdom.” Dr. Tony Evans, Senior Pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship of Dallas, Texas. This statement is a true representation of many churches in America, and it is a reason why the church often struggles to have a recognizable impact on society. At Bethel, we must wrestle with this and work through whether this applies to our church. Are we most excited about Bethel, or most excited about the much bigger, much richer thing, which is the kingdom of God? Jesus prayed in Matthew 6:10, “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” His prayer concern was for the kingdom of God to be advanced. Remember, the kingdom of God is the rule and reign of God through Jesus Christ. And this rule and reign should be most abundantly present here on earth in the local church. How then do we pray for God’s kingdom to be advanced through Bethel Church? Pray that Bethel Church would prioritize the kingdom of God in all things (Matthew 6:33), and that the relationships among the people of Bethel Church will be Christ-like and pleasing to God. Pray that the culture of Bethel Church will reflect the moral and ethical standards of God’s Word, and that our church will powerfully demonstrate the character and heart of Christ to Northwest Indiana. Finally, pray that Bethel Church will, above all else, cherish Jesus Christ and strive to make all things about him.
Application As an attender of Bethel Church, how can you be involved and supportive in our local congregation? List some things you are currently doing, and things you may want to try in 2017. Pray for our community to see the heart of our church, and for our church to always seek the kingdom of God and not the kingdom of the church/man/ourselves.
Bethel Prayer requests BETHEL LEADERSHIP Pray for Steve DeWitt, Senior Pastor, and Laura Sauerman, the Assistant to the Senior Pastor. Pray for Brad Lagos, Executive Pastor of Ministries and Dave Harvey, Executive Director of Operations. Pray for the Holy Spirit to guide and direct our campus pastors: Mark Culton (Cedar Lake), Ray Dix (Gary), and Dan Jacobsen (Hobart/Portage). Pray for the Holy Spirit to guide and direct our lead elders. Pray for the campus elders and deacons to serve others selflessly as Christ would. Pray for passion, purity, and power in our leadership. Pray for wisdom for pastoral challenges and opportunities. Pray for all leaders to be spiritually vibrant in their walk with Christ. SENIORS’ MINISTRY Pray that the seniors would continue to be open to the Holy Spirit’s prompting for God’s use. Pray that the seniors would continue to be examples of Christ’s love to those around them. Pray that the seniors would have opportunities to share their faith with those who do not know Jesus. Pray that the seniors would continue to deepen their relationship with Jesus Christ and finish the race well (2 Timothy 4:7).
How is the week going so far? Write down some ways that your prayers are different now than they were at the beginning of the week.
Seek the LORD and his strength; seek his presence continually!
- 1 Chronicles 16:11
Day 5 Thy Kingdom Come In American Culture
A hallmark quality of American culture has often been described as the spirit of “rugged individualism.” That’s a fancy way to say “we think we can!” We trust in our abilities and willpower to realize our dreams. Jesus wrote to first-century Christians living in Laodicea about this very issue. Their perspective had been warped by the culture around them, and it led to a spirit of independence and self-sufficiency. He said: “For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see.” (Revelation 3:17-18) The Laodiceans were trusting in their riches, provisions, and wisdom. But Jesus said to them “buy from me.” Jesus highlights that the source of all these gifts is our dependence on him. How that goes against our culture’s quest for individualism; how that challenges the American passion for independence and freedom. Independence cries, “I need nothing and I need no one!” But in the end, independence from God costs us everything. In contrast, dependence upon God cries, “I am nothing and I am no one.” Dependence acknowledges that through the power of God we gain everything. The kingdom of God is not conquered or achieved. Rather, the kingdom of God is accepted. It comes to us through the work of Christ on our behalf. Praying for the kingdom of God to be advanced in our American culture first means praying that our society would turn its dependence away from itself and express a humble dependence on Jesus for everything. It also means that we pray for our culture to reflect the values and priorities of God’s Word. It means we pray against the sexualized, self-gratifying, self-focused, hedonistic aspects of our society. As Christians, we ought to earnestly pray that American culture would embrace the moral teachings of Christ and the priorities of God. Let us pray for a true spiritual awakening in the culture our land!
Application Do you struggle with the attitude of “I need no one” in any aspects of life? Pray that God would help you surrender and become dependant on him in every way.
OPERATIONS MINISTRY Pray for those who work behind the scenes to help Bethel with the details and logistics of the day-to-day operations. Pray for Jeff Collins, Director of Facilities and our facilities team.
Pray God would help you have a kingdom perspective on all wordly things; pray that your dependence on him would deepen.
Pray for Rachel Collins, Connections Ministry Coordinator and all of our volunteers.
Pray for our culture according to the descriptions in the final paragraph above; pray that God’s kingdom would grow to reign in American society.
Pray for Pam Vroman, Director of Housekeeping.
Bethel Prayer requests BETHEL U AND YOUNG ADULT MINISTRIES Pray that Bethel’s young adults would grow in their dependence on Christ. In a world full of attractive things that call out for our attention, pray that the beauty and the amazing grace of Christ would capture the hearts of Bethel’s young adults. Pray that our young adults would minister to one another and to their community. CELEBRATE RECOVERY Pray for participants to experience healing in their respective hurts, habits, and hang-ups. Pray for freedom and forgiveness for those who have been hurt by others. Pray that the participants would submit their burdens to Christ and find wholeness in him. Pray that CR would increasingly reach out to and connect with the community.
Pray for Jason Peak, IT Director. Pray for Kellyn Willis, Director of Communications; Cherry Hoffner, Communications Assistant and Editor; and Ashley Spencer, Graphic Designer. Pray for Caitlin Marsee, Cedar Lake Campus Administrative Assistant; Katrina LeavyPeterson, Gary Campus Administrative Assistant; and Denise Stewart, Hobart/Portage Campus Administrative Assistant. Pray for our financial staff, Dana Behler, Financial Coordinator; Michelle Jajowka, Accounting Assistant; and Judy Huff, Accounting Clerk and Receptionist.
Day 6 Thy Kingdom Come
In the hearts of unbelievers Many consider Genghis Khan, of the Mongol Empire, to be the greatest conqueror who ever lived. Khan is infamous for his ruthlessness and thirst for domination. In fact, he is quoted as saying, “A man’s greatest joy is crushing his enemies.” Wherever Khan went, death followed in his wake. There is another conqueror who has crushed the enemy, yet his dominion brings life. This King is Jesus, and only he can conquer a human heart. When the sovereign God moves by his Spirit, and claims someone as his own, there is nothing left to do but surrender. Let’s pray today that God would work in the hearts of our friends, families, and neighbors who are without Jesus Christ. Many are blinded and think that it is best that they run their own lives. Unfortunately, they have no idea how freeing it can be to relinquish control to King Jesus. Pray that God by his sovereign power would capture their hearts and create new life. This is something that can only happen by God’s mighty kindness (Romans 2:4). Man may conquer by the taking of lives, but only God can conquer by bringing new life. Let us pray for God’s reign and rule to take root in the hearts of those who do not yet trust him.
“Prayer is not monologue, but dialogue; God’s voice is its most essential part. Listening to God’s voice is the secret of the assurance that He will listen to mine. Beware in your prayers, above everything else, of limiting God, not only by
unbelief, but by fancying that you know what He can do. Expect unexpected things ‘above all that we ask or think.’”
– Andrew Murray
Come, behold the works of the LORD, how he has brought desolations on the earth. He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; he breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the chariots with fire. “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah Psalm 46:8-11
Application Think of an intentional and specific way you can connect with an unbeliever in your life this week. Ask God to give you an opportunity to have a gospel conversation with them. Thank God for his mighty and kind rule in your heart.
Bethel Prayer requests COMMUNITY MINISTRIES Pray for our community partnerships to be effective in advancing God’s kingdom. Baptist Children’s Home, Bible Witness Camp, BRCN, Cedar Lake Ministries, Child Evangelism Fellowship, CREED, NWI Women’s Center, and Twin Lakes Camp. Pray for our partnership with the City Life Center, and for the continued growth at the CLC. Pray for Ken Barry, Executive Director of the CLC; Lindey Quiros, CLC Assistant; and all board members and volunteers. Pray for those who help with Harvest Market and our Benevolence Ministry, that they may continue to serve in a humble, caring way. Pray that small groups would reach out in service and evangelism to make a significant impact in the lives of people in Northwest Indiana. Pray for the people of Bethel to reach their neighbors, coworkers, classmates, family members, and more with the gospel of Jesus Christ; pray that we would regularly pray for and serve these people.
Jot down the names of a few unbelievers whom God has put on your heart. Take a moment to pray specifically for their salvation, remembering anything is possible for our mighty King.
And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us.
- 1 John 5:14
Day 7 Thy Kingdom Come
In our political climate, our national leadership 2017 has ushered in an unparalleled time in American politics. The United States is clearly divided, and a constant barrage of opinions confronts us at a dizzying pace. Amid all the noise and chatter, Christians often wonder, “How should I pray for my nation in this tumultuous time?” Praying for God’s kingdom to be advanced in our political climate can be a challenging task. Conflicting news reports, sensationalized stories, and our own political biases often complicate our ability to think clearly about these matters. We sometimes think that God must have the same passions and political convictions that we do. But Scripture is often silent on specific governmental policies. Instead, God’s Word emphasizes important moral principles that should guide our society, and it also describes the character and integrity we should expect from our leaders. Praying for God’s kingdom to be advanced in our politics first involves asking God to establish laws that fully reflect biblical values. We ought to pray for laws that preserve religious liberty, protect the lives of the innocent, and advance justice and righteousness in our society. We also should pray for civility, harmony, and unity within our nation. These are all biblical values, and good laws will promote these priorities of God. We also pray for the advancement of God’s kingdom by praying for the specific leaders that God has put in place. We ought to pray that those in authority conduct themselves with integrity and godly wisdom. We also pray fervently that our leaders will personally submit their lives to Christ, and thus be compelled to legislate and lead according to God’s standards. Finally, as we pray, we must have a heart of faith, knowing that God is in total control of whatever governmental system is in place. We should also have great confidence for our future, because we know that our imperfect democracy will someday be replaced by God’s perfect political structure—a divine monarchy with Christ himself on the throne. At that time, our failed attempts at human governance will all end, and Jesus will reign forever over his perfect kingdom. Let us pray for this day to come quickly!
Application James 5:16 reads, “The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” What are some particular requests that God’s people ought to pray for our nation? List five specific things that you believe should be a matter of prayer for the United States. Then spend some time praying over those things right now. In our current political climate, it is easy to have strong emotions one way or the other. Pray that God would align your heart to his rule, and that he would help you evaluate all things biblically. Pray that God would guide your conversations with family, friends, children, coworkers, etc., in regards to politics or national events.
National Prayer Requests Pray for our newly-elected President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence. Pray for the executive cabinet members and staff. Pray for our Senate leaders, Joe Donnelly and Todd Young, and House leaders, Peter Visclosky, Todd Rokita, and Jackie Walorski. Pray for the Supreme Court justices to make wise and godly decisions for our nation. Pray for laws to be passed that match God’s moral and biblical standards. Pray for peace and unity amid the divisiveness in our country. Pray for the sanctity of human life to be a treasured value in our nation. Pray for our Indiana state leaders including Gov. Eric Holcomb, Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch, Attorney General Curtis Hill, and Secretary of State Connie Lawson. Pray that religious freedoms would be maintained and protected.
Write a prayer crying out to God to heal the brokenness in our country.
Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.
- Colossians 4:2
Day 8 Thy Kingdom Come in our world
“There was in a certain city a harbor where ships from all over the world would come and dock. However, the harbor was near a treacherous and rocky shore. During stormy nights, ships would see the city in the distance and head toward the lights hoping to find refuge from the pounding surf, but alas, many ships were destroyed and hundreds of sailors lost their lives because they did not know of the danger. Sadly, the people of the city did not feel that it was necessary to build a lighthouse. It would cost too much money. There was a man in that city, however, who saw the need. He felt grief and heartache because the people of the city were content to let the ships be destroyed and were not willing to rescue the drowning sailors, so he took it upon himself to do something about it. He tried to recruit volunteers to help him but no one wanted to try to save strangers and people who looked different. Determined to make a difference, he sold everything that he had and bought a piece of land close to the shore and built his house there. It was a lighthouse. Thus, during stormy nights, the man would make sure that the light from the lighthouse was shining as bright as it could so the ships could be warned of the dangerous rocks. His lighthouse saved hundreds of lives and ships from being wrecked.” – story by Danny Lizarraga Every follower of Christ is commissioned by Christ to make disciples (Matthew 28:18-20). That is to say, we are sent to live with the mission or purpose of pointing people to Jesus. Jesus said in Matthew: “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 ESV Whether you realize it or not, you are a lighthouse, warning people of the destructiveness of sin, but also pointing them to life in Jesus. How silly would it be to have a lighthouse that was never lit! Once you have been transformed by faith in Jesus, one primary purpose in your life is to impact others with the truth of Christ
with your lips and lifestyle, both locally and globally. We have a joyful obligation to help advance God’s kingdom among those around us at home, work, or school, but we also have an obligation to those without Christ on a worldwide level. How tragic it would be for someone to have a heart for a nation halfway around the world, but neglect their next-door neighbor. Likewise, we would be remiss to only reach our immediate community context, but to neglect the nearly 3 billion people who have never heard the good news of Jesus. Friends, our hearts should break with compassion for those who don’t know Jesus. Our joy in Christ should overflow into a desire for others to know him. Bethel Church wants to mobilize people and resources to reach our community, but also the nations. We are working to make global missions a major emphasis at Bethel, so we challenge you to be prayerfully involved in three ways:
Application Read Psalm 96. What are some interesting points you notice about this psalm? How does joyful worship of God lead to global missions? If you do not feel like you currently have a heart of compassion for those who do not know Jesus, how could joy from the gospel spark that in you? Read Romans 10:13-18. How can I specifically have an active role in global missions through Bethel? Ask God to show you how you can personally pray, send, and go.
Consistently pray over our missionaries, mission teams, and unreached peoples around the world.
Pray if God would have you support and encourage our missionaries and mission teams through your sacrificial giving of time and resources.
Pray about being a part of a short-term global ministry team. Opportunities are being developed and will be communicated in the months ahead.
Bethel prayer requests GLOBAL MINISTRIES Pray for Jared Bryant, Pastor of Community Life and Missions. Pray for our missionaries’ physical and spiritual well-being, as the stress of mission work and living thousands of miles from home can wear on them. Pray for our missionaries to lead pure and upright lives, that the Lord would bless their endeavors for his namesake among the nations. Please pray that we, as a supporting church, would effectively love, support, encourage, and care for our brothers and sisters across the globe. Pray that we as a church would be diligent to lift up in prayer our missionaries and mission partnerships. Pray that the Lord helps Bethel to organize short-term global ministry trips where teams will travel to work alongside our global partners. Pray over the billions of people in our world who do not yet have salvation in Christ.
The following is a list of national and international missionaries supported by Bethel Church. Pray for each of them as they spread God’s Word through the world.
WES AND LORI TABER Chicago region Life in Messiah
SAMUEL HORNBROOK Mexico Baptist Mid-Missions
ASHRAF ABUATIAH Chicago region Crescent Project
JIM AND CAROL GARCINES California Associations of Baptists for World Evangelism (ABWE)
MATT AND SARAH DEMATEO Chicago region New Life Centers TOM HILL Chicago region Leadership Resources RICK AND MARY GLOVER Indiana AWANA DREW AND ANDREA KIRK Indianapolis, IN Campus Outreach
DICK AND KATHY PAGE Russia SOAR International Ministries
GENE AND SHELLY ANDERSON Taiwan Kids Alive
SCOTTE AND BETH ANNE STAAB South Asia, Eastern Europe, and Middle East ABWE
DON AND MARTHA REGIER Tokyo, Japan Evangelical Alliance Mission
ABRAHAM THOMAS India Baptist Children’s Home and Agape Royal Ministries
JIM AND KAREN GETZ Michigan State University Navigators
Europe: south amERICA: ALLAN AND DIANE FREY Lima, Peru Baptist Mid-Missions
JIM AND CAROLYN FASOLD Spain Greater European Mission ROGER AND SUSAN PETERSON Paris, France Biblical Ministries Worldwide STEVE AND CHERYL WINGET Eastern Europe ABWE
RON WHITE Japan Tri-City Baptist Missions TY AND PAULA STAKES Malaysia HCJB Global Asia Pacific BILL AND CHRISTINA WIDUP Vanuatu Up and Up Ministries
Use this space to write how you have grown throughout this week or prayer. Write any answers to prayer that you have seen as well as any requests that you are continuing to pray for.