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of prayer JUNE 2018


Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. PHILIPPIANS 4:4-6


D AY 1

Intimacy

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Intimacy is the main purpose of prayer. It’s in time alone in relationship with God our Father that He entrusts to us the secrets of His heart.

For Reflection A Deeper Experience of God God is always at work in your life and all around you. F.B. Meyer reflected that the greatest tragedy in life is not unanswered prayer, but un-offered prayer. It is a tragedy to think that amongst God’s people, there are so many longing for a deeper experience of God, yet do not know how to enter this kind of intimate love relationship with Him. The Holy Spirit and the Word of God are available to us to both help and instruct us to know when and where God is working and how to adjust our lives to join Him where He is. But first we need to give God our absorbed attention. We need to be still. We need to lower the volume

of the surrounding ‘static’ in our lives. Prayer brings us into the closeness and intimacy we long for. The quieter the mind, the more powerful, the worthier, the deeper, the more telling and more intimate the prayer is.

“Be still and know I am God” PSALM 46:10A

Why pray? God likes to be asked! God certainly does not need our wisdom or our knowledge, nor even the information contained in our prayers [your Father knows what you need before you ask him’]. But by inviting us into the partnership of creation, God also invites us into relationship. God is love, said the apostle John. God does not merely have love or feel love. God is love and cannot ‘not’ love. As such,


God yearns for relationship with the creatures made in His image.

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today

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Relationship is the key. Consider again the act of repentance. Confessing our sins before God communicates something God already knows. Yet somehow the act of confession binds the relationship and allows a closeness that could not otherwise exist. We make ourselves vulnerable and dependent, bringing God

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‘Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God,’ [Philippians 4:6] Paul instructs. The King James Version speaks of ‘making known’ our requests. How can we make known a request to a God who already knows?


D AY 2

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Igniting Our Passion It is the continual process of being renewed into a fuller, more complete knowledge of God and his glorious qualities that provides the fuel for the Holy Spirit to ignite a fire of passion within each heart. Prayer is the key to being ignited by God. Prayer is what we do. It is our initiative to meet God, whether we are asking for favours, singing in worship or celebration, or crying out in distress. Regardless of what shape or size it comes in, prayer is our effort to engage with God. Fire on the other hand, is what God does. It is God’s initiative to meet us. Fire comes when the self-revealing God chooses to give us a glimpse of his character, His activity, His purposes, or His presence. We experience fire when He takes the spiritual veil that separates heaven and earth in His hands and tears it from top to bottom, enabling us to look directly inside giving us the privilege to see Him

firsthand. Fire is therefore the manifest presence of God. Because prayer is what we do, and fire is what God does, prayer on fire then is what happens when what we do and what God does intersect. It is when our initiative toward God and His initiative toward us meet. Prayer on fire happens when the Holy Spirit gets His hands on our prayers and turns them into an extraordinary, rather than ordinary experience, to showcase His supernatural presence.

For Reflection Come Thirsty, Drink Deeply and Pour Freely “O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you, my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water. I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory.” PSALM 63:1-2


When can I go and meet with my God? PSALM 42:2

++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today

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My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.

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A longing is not a superficial want that might be satisfied with a simple act of kindness. Nor is a longing even a genuine need for which we can demand satisfaction. A longing is a deep ache of the heart. It is a cavity of the spirit crying to be filled. It spans the gap between emotion and genuine need. A longing cannot be reasoned with, negated nor dismissed. If not attended to it will overtake us. One way or another, whether legitimately or with a substitute, a longing will be filled. It must be. Are we filled with ‘longing’ towards God? We are made in His image, and He intentionally planted longings deep within our hearts that only He can fill [John 4:13-14]. He made us to need, to want, to find our satisfaction in Him and Him alone. Each of us was made for Him.


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Compassion “When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.� M AT T H E W 9 : 3 6

When you look around your world what do you see? How do you respond? What do you feel? When Jesus looked at the crowds He saw the struggle, the vulnerability, the need that everyone carried. He was moved with compassion. As we know, everywhere that Jesus travelled He met the needs of those He met. We carry the same hope and power that Jesus did. When you see your world are you moved with compassion? How will you respond?

Prayer Dear Jesus, please open my eyes to see the world the way You do. Please fill me with compassion for my world. Empower me by Your Spirit to be a blessing in my family, school, and workplace. Please give me opportunities to declare and demonstrate Your love to the people in my life. In the name of Jesus, Amen.

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today


D AY 4

Send Me

The call of God to “go” has never been retracted. Even today, He is looking for those that will put up their hand and declare, “Here I am. Send me!” When we go, we do not go alone or in our own power. The Holy Spirit is always with us and God equips us with all that we need for the journey ahead. That journey is not necessarily to a distant place. God is calling us to go to our neighbours, our family, our co-workers. The only qualification is obedience. God is simply looking for those that will obediently go. He will do the rest!

Prayer Dear Lord, thank you for giving me all that I need to accomplish what is set before me. Please fill me with faith and courage to boldly go into my world and be Your hands and feet. Thank you for including me in Your plan to reach the world. Here I am. Send me. In the name of Jesus, Amen.

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today

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ISAIAH 6:8

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“Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!””


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Rejoice “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” PHILIPPIANS 4:4-7

It is easy to get overwhelmed by the darkness and need in the world and in our own lives. At times, it is difficult to find the “silver lining” in our circumstances. It is in these times that we should not give in to despair, but rather begin rejoicing in the blessings of God. There is no situation that is so dark that God’s light cannot penetrate it. If we begin with praise and thanksgiving our prayers can be filled with hope instead of despair. We do not have to be worried or anxious. God is not unaware of our circumstances. It is through praise and thankfulness that we can unlock the answers that we are seeking. God will guard our hearts and minds and

give us peace. Is there a circumstance you are facing that seems overwhelming? Maybe a close friend or family member has shared a struggle they are dealing with. Why don’t you stop and pray? Begin by rejoicing in your relationship with Jesus and give Him thanks for the blessings that are in your life. Remember the joy of your salvation. When we approach God in this way our heart will start to align with His and we will be able hear His voice more clearly. Then, we will be able to pray with authority to see His action in our lives and our world.


Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today

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D AY 6

Workers Wanted “Then he said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.’”

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M AT T H E W 9 : 3 7 - 3 8

In the days of Jesus things were not much different to today. Everywhere Jesus went there were people in need. Some needed physical healing, others needed forgiveness, and some just wanted to be accepted. Jesus had compassion on them and met their needs. As we know, wherever He went miracles happened and those that encountered Him were met with love. Jesus did not come to meet the needs of a few. His whole purpose was to meet humanity’s need for a Saviour. This is where we enter the story. Jesus is no longer here in His physical form, but He has commissioned us to continue the work that He began. We are now the workers ready to bring in the harvest. Where is He calling you to be His hands and feet today? Is it in your workplace? Is it in your family? Is it to the homeless man you pass each day on your way to the office? If

we look around there are people all around us that are desperate to encounter our Saviour. Will you reach out to them or turn away? We are His representatives on earth called to work the fields for harvest.

Prayer Jesus, would you give me eyes to see the needs of my world? May I not become overwhelmed by the greatness of unmet needs around me but empower me to prayerfully and intentionally reach out where you lead me. I ask that You use me to make a difference in my world, even if it is only to one person. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today


D AY 7

Break Through

Call Upon Me, Pray To Me And I Will Listen “For I know the plans I have for you” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you.” JEREMIAH 29:11-14

When you pray, believing in faith and God doesn’t show up when you think He should, don’t get discouraged. Did

God really hear me? Was I praying right? These words in Jeremiah are not only for the Hebrews sent into exile by Nebuchadnezzar [primarily the leaders, royalty, priests and soldiers 2 Kings 24:14,16 & Jeremiah 29:1-2], but words that bring comfort, confidence and hope to us today. God knows the future and wants us to trust Him for the journey ahead. When we feel like abandoned captives, if we call upon Him, come and pray to Him, He will not only hear us but promises us a hope and a future, assuring us that He will see us through.

“Is any one of you in trouble? Pray.” JAMES 5:13

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For Reflection

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It’s not about Jesus rescuing us from a world and all within it on the brink of overcoming us, but rather as the Scripture promises – that in Him we would overcome the world. [John 16:33, 1 John 5:4-5] With faith we continue to press into our Lord, for nothing outside of us is bigger than that which is inside of us!


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When God purposes to do something, He guarantees that it will come to pass. He is the One who will accomplish what He purposes to do. If you depend upon anything other than God, you will be asking for failure in kingdom terms. God often allows us to learn from Him in the sunshine and calm seas that which we will need to lean on in the darkness and storms. Despite experiencing oppression, we thank God for the Hope we have in Christ. No matter the severity of the storm we face, we join with Apostle Paul in saying, “… We are persecuted, but we never have to stand it alone: we may be knocked down, but we are never knocked out! Every day we experience something of the death of the Lord Jesus, so that we may also know the power of the life of Jesus…”

“Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low, the crooked places shall be made straight the rough ground shall become level; The glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all shall see it together” ISAIAH 40:4-5

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today


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How Then Should I Live? “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” MICAH 6:8

Micah say there are three things that God requires of us: ++ To act justly - to behave according to what we believe in - the vertical dimension. ++ To love mercy - to forgive those who have wrongly hurt us - the horizontal dimension. ++ To walk humbly with your God - to be humble, gracious and nonjudgemental in our spirit - the inward dimension When we, as Christians, act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with our God then the world will be drawn to Christ.

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In the musical, My Fair Lady, Elisa Doolittle rightly says…. words, words, words…I’m sick of words if you love me…show me. People are looking for right actions behind the nice words. The psalmist says, taste and see that the Lord is good. People encounter the Christian first and then decide whether they want to encounter the Christ they talked about.

How then should we live that makes them want to thirst for Christ?

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We live in a society where words are cheap. There are spin doctors helping us to get the message across irrespective of the truth. Their aim is to get a following at all costs. People are naturally suspicious of what they hear and what they read. We now even have fake news! So, what can we really believe in if all that we hear in our community may or not be true?


Mahatma Gandhi, “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.�

Prayer

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Lord, give me the grace to not just know the truth but to begin to live it out. Amen.

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today


D AY 9

Break Through Each of us are called by God to participate in ushering in His kingdom – showing people the way to Jesus. To do this we must have hearts that are aligned and display His kingdom ways.

“This, then, is how you should pray: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name, Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” “ M AT T H E W 6 : 9 - 1 0

When Jesus came to earth, He came to penetrate the very kingdom of darkness with light. He came to apply healing to sickness, replace sadness with joy, and fill meaninglessness with purpose. He came to change things for the better for a world that had no hope outside of God. Jesus coming

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Praying ‘Your Kingdom Come, Your Will Be Done’

made the way for us to reconnect with the Kingdom of God on earth, so that we might bring the Kingdom of God into our world, our families, our workplace and our communities. As partners in God’s work on earth, we were taught to pray God’s will be done while at the same time committing ourselves to whatever that may require of us. ‘Your Kingdom come, your will be done.’ God wants you to bring His Kingdom into the territory He has entrusted you with so that His will can be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Your domain is your workplace, family, and community. As you pray heaven down you will more fully see and experience all the features of this gift of light that has been given not only to you, but to all people.

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For Reflection


“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear His voice saying ‘This is the way, walk in it’”

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ISAIAH 30:21

It is our role to follow in Jesus steps by doing the work of the Kingdom both by our deeds and our prayers. We are Christ’s body on earth, to borrow Paul’s metaphor. As we are in Christ, those we minister to, Christ ministers to; those we forgive, Christ forgives. When we extend mercy to the broken hearted, we reach out with the hands of Christ Himself. Those we pray for, Christ prays for. Christ’s Spirit is praying within us even when we lack both the wisdom and the words for prayer. Even our most immature, exhausted, confused, seemingly distant prayers have an in-built correction mechanism.

“In the same way the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with Gods will.” ROMANS 8:26-27

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today


D AY 1 0

One Body, Many Parts

1 CORINTHIANS 12:12-14

We live in a very diverse

country. So many of the people we see on a daily basis look and sound different to us. This does not make them better or inferior to us, they are just different. God has called us to go to the nations. That means that every tribe and tongue is important to Him. Sometimes, it can be challenging to love someone who looks, acts, and believes differently to us. Despite our differences, we are all made in God’s image. We are loved by God and important enough that He sent His Son to die for us all. Are you willing to step outside of your comfort zone to reach out to someone who is completely different to you? Who has God put in your sphere of influence that needs to know His love?

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As Christians, we make up the body of Christ. We each have a unique and significant role to play. This is one Biblical example of what community looks like. In community, we all belong and we all need each other to function in a healthy, whole way. Community works best when we are willing to contribute our unique attributes to the greater whole. It does not stop there however. We also must be willing to receive the unique attributes of another. In this way, we are all enriched and strengthened through the interaction with one another. Proverbs 27:17 says it this way, “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”

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“Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptised by one Spirit so as to form one body— whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.”


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Prayer Jesus, may you give me a heart of compassion for the nations that live and work next to me. May my eyes see beyond the colour of their skin that I may see them as You do. May our differences not divide us but instead enrich us. Give me a heart of unity and inclusiveness that all may know Your love. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today


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Holy Spirit

JOHN 14:15-17

We don’t have to have all the answers or be a student

of theology to be effective in evangelism. We simply must be willing and obedient. God does the rest. He has given us all we need to declare and demonstrate His love in the world. He has given us His Spirit to do just that!

Prayer Lord, please forgive me for the times I’ve allowed fear and insecurity to prevent me from sharing your gospel with someone. By Your Spirit, would You fill me with courage and love to reach out to my family, friends, and colleagues. I trust You because You are always faithful and will not leave me on my own. Fill me afresh with Your Spirit that I may boldly declare and demonstrate Your kingdom in my world. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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Have you ever felt afraid or unqualified to share the gospel with someone? It is not uncommon to be apprehensive. But as 2 Timothy 1:7 tells us, “For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and selfdiscipline.” We do not have to be afraid for the Holy Spirit is with us and in us to empower us for every situation. When we share the gospel, whether through our words or an act of service, we do not operate in our own power or abilities. God has given us His Spirit to equip us with what we need to be salt and light in the world. The best part is that the outcome is not our responsibility either. The Holy Spirit is the One who draws us each to God through loving kindness.

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“If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever-- the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.”


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Greater Things “Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.”

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JOHN 14:12

This is a very challenging verse. Can we actually do what Jesus did and even greater things? One way to read this verse is that we will do more than Jesus did in quantity rather than in the miraculous. Jesus did incredible things, but He was limited in time. He was only on the earth a very short amount of years. His time of public ministry was only three years. All that He accomplished and was recorded in the Bible happened in that short span of time. He did not have the convenience of cars, the internet, or television, but the impact of His life and message continues today. We are not limited by time the way Jesus was. We carry His power and authority within us by the Holy Spirit. If we live a normal lifespan we have about 80 years to minister in our world. We may not see every person healed that we pray for

and most of us may not raise the dead, but we can reach out to many more people than Jesus was able to in His time. One person can preach to millions around the world thanks to the internet. We have access to so much technology that enables us to spread the gospel exponentially that was not available in Jesus’ life. Most of us will simply live longer than He did, thus giving us more opportunity to serve. We can do greater things because of the blessings and resources that God has provided us. We simply need to “go”. Are you willing to use the resources at your disposal to declare and demonstrate His love?

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today


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Who Is My Neighbour?

LUKE 10:25-37

Daily Journal Ask the Lord to show you who your “neighbour” is and how He wants you to show love to him or her. ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today

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as he travelled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’ “Which of these three do you think was a neighbour to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?” The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.” Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.””

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“On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?” He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’ and, ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’” “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.” But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbour?” In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan,


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Be Prepared “But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.”

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1 PETER 3:15

When the opportunity presents itself, are you ready to give an answer to the hope that you carry in Jesus? You never know who you will encounter on any given day. God calls us to be prepared. Preparation infers that there is an anticipation of a coming event or opportunity. Just like an athlete going to the gym and training before a season begins we should be preparing ourselves for the divine encounters that God will put before us.

each day. Then, the answer we give is a testimony of what God has done for us. As we share we can almost “gossip” the Gospel as we tell others what God has done. Preparation can also look like prayer. Pray before you start your day. Pray before a meeting or test. Beginning each part of your day in prayer goes a long way to prepare you for whatever you face.

You don’t have to be a theologian or professional apologist to be prepared. Your personal testimony is a powerful thing. Our preparation could be seen as our day to day experiences of God’s faithfulness and blessing in our lives. We need to recognize God’s presence and work in and through us

++ One new thing I have learned today

Daily Journal

++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today


D AY 1 5

Our Value

There are some very dark corners of our world. You only need to watch the evening news to see the evidence that we live in a fallen world. Children, women, and the vulnerable are being exploited and used in horrific ways. Many of these people are forgotten by society and left to endure hopeless lives. They are not forgotten by God. He sees them and knows them each by name. They are priceless in His sight. Today, as you pray would you remember those that don’t have a voice? Pray for those being trafficked or forced into slavery. Pray for the disadvantaged who have no resource or opportunity to change their situation.

Pray for the abused and downtrodden. We can be their voice. Do not underestimate your prayers! They are powerful and effective (James 5:16).

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today

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M AT T H E W 1 0 : 2 8 - 3 1

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“Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So, don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”


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Impact It’s about turning the tide – starting where you live. The tide turns when God’s people pray!

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For Reflection Living With A Desire For Deep And Lasting Impact “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know” JEREMIAH 33:3

We were created to long for relevance and significance. Intuitively we each desire to make a deep and lasting impact. Yet the enemy loves to twist and corrupt our desire to make an impact, often returning it as accusing ammunition against us; ‘You just want to be seen’, ‘All you want is to build your own reputation’, ‘See there is your ego again’. These fiery darts sting because there is a measure of truth in them. We all have lived with the struggle of pride in varying

degrees at various times in our lives related to what we do or have achieved. We have all tried to help the Lord out by going on ahead of Him, like He needs our assistance to achieve His purposes! [Proverbs 19:21] Yet fortunately, the Lord knows that the desire to have an impact is part of the essence of how we were created and who we are. We long to share things with others that change them or bring them joy, provision and blessing. The real question is ‘Are we willing to risk everything, so others can experience something eternally significant and transformational?’ We only have deep significance and lasting impact as we walk in obedience to God’s will for us. Can our prayers really make a difference? We can understand the point


of praying as a means of simply trying to establish relationship with God. But why should we spend hours in prayer, interceding, if God has plans and knows what we want and need and what’s best for us? Will spending hours in prayer cause Him to change his mind?

++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today

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Daily Journal

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The New Testament presses home that our prayers make a difference to God and to the world: Ask and it will be given to you [Matthew 7:7], the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well [James 5:15], the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective [James 5:16], for the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer [1 Peter 3:12], and ‘you do not have, because you do not ask God. [James 4:2]


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I Am Afraid But…

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“He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves.” The harvest is ready and urgently needs to be brought in before it spoils. There is a sense of urgency about it because there are not enough workers to bring in the ready harvest. The solution is to ask the Lord of the harvest to send more workers. It should be exciting to collect the harvest - it’s the fruit of all the early labour. Yet throughout history it has always been true that “the harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few”. Why? I think the reason could be, Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. It’s the nature of the wolves to tear and to kill the lambs. In New Zealand we sometimes hear of senseless and horrific killing of lambs - slaughtered and left out in the field. The wolves don’t kill to eat but

just to kill. The wolves can hear the lambs and smell them a long way off and will hunt for them. Jesus did not lie - He said that the harvest is ready and plentiful but it’s in an environment of certain danger and imminent death. Now, Jesus is the Good Shepherd. A shepherd guards and protects his sheep. Jesus knows it’s a dangerous harvest missionHe tells us that. There are three things in play: ++ The plentiful harvest and the lack of workers ++ The dangerous mission and likelihood of death ++ The Good Shepherd Don’t allow the danger of the mission to cloud out the plentiful harvest and the Good Shepherd. Remember, Jesus knows the danger and


that is why He said to go with all His authority and He will be there with us. (Matthew 28:18-20)

Lord, give me the grace to not just know the truth but to begin to live it out. Amen.

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You have heard of wolves in sheep clothing in the church, but we can easily be lambs in wolves clothing on our frontline. Yes, I’m afraid but He is the Good Shepherd and He has given me authority and He is always with me.


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I Am Not Ashamed Of The Gospel

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“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.” ROMANS 1:16

It’s a very human thing to be ashamed of the gospel where we can have eternal life without having to do anything at all except to believe in Jesus who died on the cross for our sins. This is against our human thinkinga stumbling block to the Jews to believe in a crucified Saviour and foolishness to the Greeks who can’t see any wisdom in a dead man saving others when he can’t save himself. There is an inward shame that we must battle with about the gospel and an outward ridicule that we will face as we share the gospel. Here, even the great apostle Paul feels the inward shame. His solution was to speak to his soul man, emphatically telling himself, “I am not ashamed of the gospel…”

He was tempted to feel ashamed, so he tells himself that there is no need to feel like that and gave two solid reasons: ++ The Gospel is the power of God - no matter how you feel about it ++ The Gospel is how God brings salvation to everyone who believes The heart is controlled by the mind - our emotion is best handled by our beliefs. Paul exhorts us “not to conform with the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewal of our mind (Romans 12:2). Paul dealt with the inward unrest with the truth. When we are at peace we can share freely, clearly and emphatically. It gives us the


space to be person-focussed and to hear from God rather than pour out our prepared text on an unloved person. Be at peace first before you can bring peace.

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Lord, give me the grace to not just know the truth but to begin to live it out. Amen.


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Power Prayers From God The power of praying God’s word can bring life to our circumstances.

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For Reflection Praying God’s Words After Him The Bible is full of so much richness. There are people’s prayers to God, there are God’s words to us. There are godly examples of how to live and love. There are important warnings about what not to do. One area that we can draw on as we read scripture is the powerful prayers that Jesus prays, and the prayers of the disciples and Paul in the New Testament. Jesus made it clear that His words weren’t just air passing through a set of vocal chords. The words He spoke, he spoke because He heard the Father saying them. They are promises, declarations, questions and prayers that come straight from the heart of the Father,

and as Jesus says in John’s Gospel, they are breathed

“It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.” JOHN 6:63

Jesus knows that His words have power to bring life to people. Later, James realises that there is power in our words, to bring life or death. But we know from this verse in John that Jesus is letting us know that His words are full of Spirit-power, and they bring about the flourishing of all who receive them. It’s interesting that this verse sits right in the middle of some of the hardest things Jesus has to say during His ministry. He’s literally just said people need to eat His flesh and drink His blood, because He is the true food and drink from heaven.


That’s confusing, and even the disciples struggled to get their heads around that. It’s at this point that Jesus reminds them that He is always speaking life and drawing them to intimacy with Him.

receive a small impartation of His life that illuminates our mind and tenderises our heart.”

When we choose to pray and meditate on the words of God, particularly those we have recorded from Jesus in the New Testament, there is power and life there. And that life brings about change. Look at all that happened in the lives of the disciples: they were uneducated fishermen, tax collectors, normal people. And then they received the words of Jesus, and the power of the Spirit, and they took the good news of Jesus to the ends of the earth. The world was changed by their lives.

++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today

++ One new thing I have learned today

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Why not spend some time looking and finding the words of Jesus in the gospels and Revelation, and pray them. Pray them for yourself, pray them for your families, our church, and our world. As Mike Bickle says, every time we pray these words, “we

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Watch What He Is Doing “Thus the saying ‘One sows, and another reaps’ is true. I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labour.””

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JOHN 4:37-38

A preacher told the story of a man who routinely started his Monday by sitting in Central Wellington train station. A porter noticed him and wondered why he would appear every Monday morning, rain or shine, calm or windy. The man would just sit and watch each train as it came in, stopped, dropped off passengers and then left the station. Then he would get up, looking refreshed and walk away. One day the porter summoned enough courage and asked him: “Why do you do this?” The man explained that he worked as a minister of a small church nearby and looked forward each week to coming to the busy station on his day off. He found it was hard work in his parish because he needed

to be constantly pushing if all the work was to get done and not fall behind. “I am just so exhausted by the end of my week. I look forward to just watching the trains moving without being pushed”. He added, “The sight of them moving on their own, without being pushed, nourishes and energises me!” Most witnessing work is like this - ploughing up the hard ground, a lot of hard work with often very few results. But watch for a moment what God is doing in your frontline, then join Him. It’s like the leaves in our garden - sometimes all the leaves are still except for the one or two that are moving. They seem to be catching a breeze. The Holy Spirit is just like the wind blowing where it pleases (John 3:8).


Prayer Lord, give me the grace to not just know the truth but to begin to live it out. Amen.

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It feels like you are surfing the wind of God’s Spirit. It’s wonderful to be the last person in the chain of leading someone to the Lord but remember others have done the hard work. Sometimes God wants to encourage us by allowing us to be the last person in the chain.

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Watch who the Holy Spirit is touching by circumstances that are happening in their lives or hear what God is telling you. If you watch and hear you can see it. Just like the leaves, some are moving in the wind. Work with those who the wind is blowing on and see the difference. You will be nourished and energised by it.


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Are You A Sheep Or A Goat? “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison and did not help you?’ “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’”

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M AT T H E W 2 5 : 4 4 - 4 5

Jesus began by talking about people from all nations gathering before the throne where He is there separating them like a shepherd separates sheep from the goats.

++ Gave me drink when I was thirsty

He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.

++ Cared for me when I was sick

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The Sheep on the right are blessed and inherit the kingdom prepared for them (v34) and the goats are sent to eternal fire (v41). We think belief is all important when it comes to Judgement Day. Here, Jesus focussed on behaviour as the key difference between sheep and goats. The sheep are those who did these things for Jesus: ++ Gave me food when I was hungry

++ Invited me in when I was a stranger ++ Gave me clothes when I needed clothes

It’s so easy to be blind to the crying needs of those around us. We see them every day – they are second nature to us. Jesus identified Himself with the least, the marginalised and the despised. They are the ones that are hungry, thirsty, lonely, naked, sick and imprisoned. In our busy daily life with so many thoughts in our mind - rushing from one thing to another, may God open our eyes to see Jesus in one person among the


“unattractive” multitudes we would rather walk past. Mother Theresa, “Never worry about numbers. Help one person at a time and always start with the person nearest you.”

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Lord, give me the grace to not just know the truth but to begin to live it out. Amen.


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Coming Back To God The power of repentance prayers can turn around our understanding of our circumstance.

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For Reflection Taking Our Prayers To God It seems like a weird concept but taking our words to God is important. Parents know the power when a child comes and speaks about a matter on their heart. The younger the child, or the bigger the problem, the more the parent knew about it before the conversation. But when the child chooses to come and bring the problem or concern to Mum or Dad, there’s value and power in it. We’ve all made decisions in our life that are not God’s best plan for us. Sometimes it’s out of our brokenness, sometimes it is straight out of a rebellious heart. Regardless of how we step out of that place of God’s best for us, it’s all sin. And it

requires us to return to God and confess, to present our words to Him, the one who already knows that we’ve stepped away from Him. Israel in the Old Testament is such a powerful and poignant picture of this. They are given such a powerful revelation of God – a marriage proposal, in fact. And yet, they chose in their hearts to chase after others, to step away from their Creator, Saviour and Deliverer. God knew, and yet, the words of Hosea the Prophet show the value in taking responsibility to return to God and own our problem. And to not only own it but do our part in cleaning up our mess.


“Return, O Israel, to the LORD your God, for you have stumbled because of your iniquity. Take with you words and return to the LORD; say to him, ‘Take away all iniquity; accept what is good, and we will pay with bulls the vows of our lips.’”

Why not spend a little time returning to the Lord, taking with you a confession of your iniquity? Recognise, like Hosea suggests, the good things that are there, which is evidence of God’s faithfulness. Clean up

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We are best placed to pray and see breakthrough for ourselves, our families and loved ones, our church and our community when we have given God the chance to deal with our brokenness. It takes intentionality for us to present our confessions to God. We need to ‘take our words’ with us when we return to the Lord. Our words of confession – both of our brokenness and God’s goodness – position our hearts to know God’s goodness and presence for the task at hand.

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HOSEA 14:1-2

your mess with God and realise that your words are powerful: they have spoken vows that are costly, and they can restore you to right-standing with God, the faithful and loving one.


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Faith In Our Relationship With God

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Scripture speaks repeatedly about having faith that God is faithful and He hears our prayers.

For Reflection Have You Given Up On Your Prayers For Change, Healing Or Restoration? Time and again, when the Bible tells us to pray, there is a reminder that when we pray in God’s will, in accordance with His plans and purposes for us, aware of His character and kingdom values, then He can be trusted to hear it, and address it. 1 John 5 tells that we should have confidence in these prayers, because they can help us deal with significant sin issues in our lives. Most Christians don’t have too much problem believing that God, at some level, hears our personal prayers of repentance. But what about those big

prayers? What about those ones where we feel almost like we’re not qualified to pray them? When we spend time praying about our city’s leaders, or other government and legislation concerns? What about when we’re praying for family members to experience and know God’s love? What about when we pray about chronic illness, or addictions, or myriad other problems that seem to be part-and-parcel of life today? I take great encouragement from Daniel. His whole book in the Bible just resonates with our modern world. Daniel is a refugee, in fact more like a prisoner of war. He’s taken by a foreign leader, forced to serve in his government, all the while seeing his own people and nation punished, subjugated


and exploited. His family is most likely dead, his homeland in ruins, and even his small group of friends under threat of death. Daniel himself is constantly faced with pain, punishment and death.

“Then he said to me, ‘Fear not, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your

‘I have come because of your words.’ ‘Your words have been heard.’ Heaven is responding to Daniel’s prayer of faith, based on the faithfulness of God, not Daniel’s position or importance. It took a long time for the answer to come in: 21 days in this instance, and the answer to the prayers in its fulness came long after Daniel’s life. Yet, God responded because of Daniel’s words. What are your words? What have you prayed that you are still waiting on? Is God’s faithfulness the foundation of those prayers?

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Daniel’s answer comes in an unexpected way. An angel shows up, and after a lot of trembling and telling Daniel to stand up:

DANIEL 10:12

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Amidst this, though, Daniel plans on the faithfulness of God. His entire plan for life, his deepest hopes for his family and his country, everything that he wants to happen, but can’t even imagine, banks on the faithfulness of God. So, he prays. He prays relentlessly, seemingly without answer or result. But you get the impression that Daniel realises that, despite his position and influence with King Nebuchadnezzar, it hangs by a wire, and could all collapse. Prayer and a reliance on the faithfulness of God is all he has to keep him going. How would you respond in this situation?

heart to understand and humbled yourself before your God, your words have been heard, and I have come because of your words.’”


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Joyful Prayer

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Prayer is a discipline as well as a passion of the Christian life – but it is all designed to reflect the joy of God.

For Reflection Fasting And Praying Is About Making Space For God’s Love In Our Hearts Fasting isn’t the most fun. My fasting prayers are usually, “God, could you make the growling stop so that it doesn’t bother the people around me?” It takes me a while to push through the discomfort to remember that I’m doing this to get closer to God. God, who is the source and reality of love, joy, peace, and so much more, calls us to dedicate ourselves to Him, and this includes our physical bodies. Fasting is a way that, throughout Church history, Christians have grown in their intimacy with God. Jesus did it – for 40 days! I’m not suggesting that

you do a 40 day fast straight out of the gate, but His example should encourage us that there’s power and purpose for us to fast. For Israel in the time of Jesus, they had only one scriptural fast, on the Day of Atonement. However, the Pharisees, and even John the Baptist’s disciples, and possibly more people, all observed a complex arrangement of fasts. Some were fasting twice a week in Jesus’ day. God didn’t command it, but out of their desire to know Him, they had taken it upon themselves to fast. However, it was problematic for at least two reasons. First, the fasts were often in response to major defeats, disappointments or brokenness in Israel’s history. They fasted in remembrance of past events, in the hope


that they would experience God’s mercy and redemption in the areas of loss. With the arrival of Jesus, who declares that the Kingdom of Heaven is breaking into people’s circumstances and bringing with it all that love, joy, healing, redemption, and so on. It’s not the season to fast from a place of mourning and loss anymore. The King is in town, so why should they be so down?

And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.”

Second, there were external pressures to fast and pray. People get upset at Jesus and his followers in the gospels because they aren’t fasting. Jesus makes the above point about celebrating. He also says prior to this that the point of fasting isn’t about what others see you doing:

In God’s new economy of love and joy, of freedom and life, fasting and praying like this is not about loss, but about gain. When we deny ourself, we create space for God’s sufficiency and supply. We create space in our lives for His love. It’s meant to be a joyful affair, that teaches our heart to rejoice in God in all times, because that’s the part that God is concerned about. When your heart is toward Him, the rest will follow.

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Jesus knows that fasting and prayer are not about external presentations. If you’re doing it to look ‘good’ or ‘spiritual’ in other people’s eyes, then you’re missing the point, and the best you’ll get from it is those people’s esteem. Which, for all the hunger and selfdenial, hardly seems worth it.

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“And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret.

M AT T H E W 6 : 1 6 - 1 8


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Crying Out For Justice God doesn’t just desire justice, He is the ultimate source of justice.

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For Reflection God Desires Justice And Will One Day Bring Justice To The Entire World. But It Will Be His Justice, Not Ours God cares. He cares about everything. We know from the start of John’s gospel that He holds the entirety of the created universe together by the force of His will. He created this world for us to live in, and showed us how to do that, first through the scriptures and people of Israel, and ultimately through Jesus and the agency of the Spirit in the church. How much, then, should we trust that God wants to bring about His kingdom values, including justice? There is the clear and present problem that He has indeed given authority to humanity, which

we quickly gave up to the enemy. But since Jesus, the kingdom of God has been taking back power and authority in the world, and with it the presence of God’s justice. In the way that it always seems to go in the Christian life, as represented in the scripture, there is a colabouring between God and us as His people. He is more than powerful enough to do everything on His own, and indeed, sometimes He does. But one of the mysteries of God is that He chooses to partner with us to see Kingdom results come about. It doesn’t seem to be the most efficient way to do things, but I think that maybe sometimes He is more interested in the process and the relationship than the results! In Luke’s gospel, Jesus tells


a story of an unjust judge who makes a just decision because the lady who is presenting her case just won’t stop petitioning him. Jesus then likens God to this unjust judge!

God wants to pour out His justice on the world, a justice that is restorative and redemptive and reconciling. But Jesus says He’ll give to those believers who cry out day and night. Justice will come when we passionately partner with God, putting aside our agenda for justice and restitution, and allow our energy to go into petitioning God to do it. The energy we waste now on our own offended sensibilities and injured egos, which

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LUKE 18:6-8

When we cry out for God’s justice, we give up our own requirement for justice, and our own finite and blinkered view of what the problems are, and we can let God bring a holistic response to the problems. Why not spend some time today asking for God’s justice in an area of concern you have. Your opinion might be informed or ignorant, it might be from personal experience or from a sense of social justice, but God’s solution is by far the best. Turn that energy toward crying out to a just and good Father who desires justice.

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“And the Lord said, ‘Hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?’”

might even be legitimate, Jesus encourages us to turn that toward crying out to God to bring His justice. His justice sees all the concerns, problems, causes and injuries, yet desires that all should come to a place of restoration.


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Witnesses Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in Heaven. For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.

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M AT T H E W 1 8 : 1 9

In Old Testament society the word of witnesses could execute judgement that could put people out of the community, and even put people to death. (Deuteronomy 17:7) In the verse above Jesus takes that Jewish cultural understanding of a more judicial role and the power of witnesses to a new level of not only confidence in praying to Him and being heard but that His Presence will be there with us. This revealed that Jesus was God. One of the common names for God among the rabbis was “the Place’ i.e. the Omnipresent one. When we gather to pray as two or three witnesses to the presence of Jesus, Our Go-To-Place – He is with us. We can be confident of His Presence because we

are witnesses to His work in our lives, in our families, in our communities and in our world. He is omnipresent and when we gather together in twos and threes Jesus honours His promise to be with us. When witnesses are called to court and testify to what they have seen and heard, decisions are taken, and judgments are made. They are crucial to the court process and can turn judgements around, give new information, enable the finding of guilt and innocence. When we gather to pray we witness to the testimony of Jesus, to His presence and His work on the cross for us, His innocence that took on the guilt of the world. He loves us and has promised


Jesus, thank you for your presence. Grow our confidence in that presence that takes us seriously and listens to what we pray. Give us faith to pray from our heart’s desires, trusting in your presence with us and your response to us. Prompt our awareness to pray in our lifegroups, bookgroup, coffee dates and daily encounters, bringing your presence into all of life. Amen.

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to listen and answer our prayers if we agree and ask together. This is not just for personal benefit but for the Kingdom of God. He has called us to take part in His work of revealing Him to our families and wider society and the nations and He promises to take action. It may not always be the action we expect but something happens! Jesus embodied Love declared, and Love demonstrated by His presence and His action.


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When You Pray “When You Pray….” Matt 6 ….

“Father…… (Luke 11:2)

Jesus does not seem to consider prayer an optional extra. It’s integral to our walk with Him, as fundamental as breathing. Physical breathing comes naturally to us. As soon as we are born we are checked for breathing. If we don’t breathe properly all kinds of ailments can afflict us. We breathe slowly to keep calm, we breathe fast after exertion or when we are afraid. Asthma complicates breathing, panic attacks can make you feel like you can’t breathe, our whole body is affected by breathing.

Just as there are ways to breathe healthily i.e. keep breathing too fast and one hyperventilates or breathe in toxic fumes and your body will react! So, there are principles to praying.

Jesus tells us when we pray do not be like the hypocrites (Matthew 6:5) When you pray go into your room (Matthew 6:6) When you pray do not babble (Matthew 6:7) When you pray forgive anyone you have something against (Mark 11:25) When you pray say

We need to be authentic and not doing it for show. What are our motives when we pray? We are asked to find a room and pray. Now in New Testament times people did not have private rooms and often a chamber was used as it had a door. Today we pray anytime, anywhere or anyplace. Our concept of God is wider, and we have an intimacy with Him that can seem outrageous to others. A private space is still crucial to developing intimacy with Jesus. A place to develop our spiritual life and relationship with Him. We are asked not to babble. We don’t need to address multiple deities or bargain


with God. We don’t need lots of words for God to hear us When we pray - forgive. Our prayers will be hindered and our lives also if we don’t take notice of this. We can be honest with God and ask Him to help us. It can take time.

Jesus, help us to pray. As you prayed and showed us that intimacy with God is possible, as you lived Love Declared and Love Demonstrated in your relationship with the Father; teach us also to pray so that it is as natural as breathing. Amen.

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When you pray say, “Father” – How amazing is this. Jesus predicates effective prayer on a relationship of intimacy, not a business partnership model. We get to call him Papa, Daddy, Abba.


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Faith “And what more could I say to convince you? For there is not enough time to tell you of the faith of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets. Through faith’s power they conquered kingdoms and established true justice. Their faith fastened onto their promises and pulled them into reality! It was faith that shut the mouth of lions, put out the power of raging fire, and caused many to escape certain death by the sword. In their weakness their faith imparted power to make them strong! Faith sparked courage within them and they became mighty warriors in battle, pulling armies from another realm into battle array. “ Chapter 11 in the book of Hebrews is a history lesson of the heroes of the faith, and the fruit that came because of their faith. The author tells us that Faith brings our hopes into reality! It becomes the foundation that we need to acquire the things we long for! Throughout the recorded history of the nation of Israel, it was the testimony of Faith that previous generations were commended for. Not of wealth, nor might in battle, nor victories over sworn enemies – but Faith! The

author submits to us that it is Faith which empowers us to see that the universe was created and beautifully coordinated by the power of God’s words. The chapter covers some truly righteous people – Enoch was “lifted from this life and he was taken up into heaven! He never had to experience death; he just disappeared from this world because God promoted him” because he was commended as one who pleased God. Yet, when we travel down into verses 32


to 34 we hear reference to men of whose company I am more comfortable in, and with whom I can more easily identify. We can read about some of these people in the book of Judges.

Samson (Judges 13 – 16) was a man of extraordinary

In Jephthah (Judges 11) we hear the story of a man who was born the son of a prostitute – rejected by his family and chased

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Barak (Judges 4) was another warrior, called to battle with the promise of victory by Deborah (a prophet and leader of Israel) under the command of the Lord God, but he would not go unless she went with him. He trusted more in her relationship with God, than his own. Despite the conditions he placed upon his action, God used him to bring about victory for the Israelites.

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Gideon (Judges 6 – 8), was a man who was full of fear, and who repeatedly required supernatural confirmation of the calling of God upon his life. Yet he ultimately trusted in the words of the Lord and went on to truly attain the title of “mighty warrior” that was prophesied over him in the midst of his fear in the winepress.

strength – a veritable one man army, but had very poor taste in women. He had trouble guarding his heart and allowed himself to fall in love with someone, Delilah, who did not reciprocate the depth of his love – who was willing to sell him out to his enemies for money. He must have known that Delilah was going to betray him, as he had misled her about the source of his strength on three occasions, yet he finally gave in and told her “all his heart”. He was promptly betrayed, his head shaved, and his strength left him. He was taken into captivity by his enemies, blinded, and put to humiliating labour for their entertainment. Yet Samson called upon God to remember him and to restore his strength one more time, and in a final act, he pushed over the two supporting pillars of the temple – killing in this one act, more than he had killed in his life.


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away from his home and his community by his halfbrothers without a share of the family inheritance. He gathered a gang of “scoundrels” around him and became renowned as a mighty warrior. During a time of war, he was called into a position of leadership by the elders of the community that had cast him out and invited to be their commander. He responds to them in a bold declaration of faith, that if they take him back to fight against the invaders and the Lord delivers them to him, that he would become their head. We see that the Spirit of the Lord comes upon Jephthah, with boldness he advances against the Ammonites, with devastating victories. We see through the stories of these four men, each flawed or troubled in their own way, the power of a bold faith in achieving victories. Each of them is listed in Hebrews as a hero of the faith – despite their fear, their doubt, their vices and their backgrounds. I love how the author of Hebrews says, “their faith fastened onto their promises and pulled them into reality”.

In their weakness their faith imparted power to make them strong. This is the promise that we have in Jesus, that it is in our weakness that His strength is revealed. What is an area of anxiety or fear that the Holy Spirit is leading you to lay down in faith before the Lord? How is the Holy Spirit challenging you to step out in faith in response to an invitation? Are you going through a time in your life where you are calling on God to remember you? Is the Holy Spirit leading you into repentance in a certain area? Is there a promise yet revealed in your life that you are relying on God to pull into reality?

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today


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Keep Praying Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 THESSALONIANS 5:16-18

God is not a heavenly genie serving our every whim or desire, but He loves us and wants to work in our lives. He wants us to bring our requests to Him. When we pray consistently with a heart of gratitude He will answer us.

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today

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In the case of a specific request, continuing to bring it before God may be difficult and even discouraging at times when it seems there is

no change, but it never falls on deaf ears. God hears our prayers and He is acting, though we may not initially see His action or the results. Keep praying! Don’t give up. After all, the widow who persisted with the judge got what she asked for because she did not take no for an answer (Luke 18:1-8).

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Sometimes, our prayers are not answered immediately. Sometimes, it takes time and consistency to see the prayer answered. It may even be years before the answer comes. We’ve all heard testimonies of a mother praying for a son or daughter for many years before they become a Christian. What a joy it must be to see those years of faithful prayer finally answered! Other times, it seems God acts almost instantly. In either case, we need to cultivate a lifestyle of prayer. That does not mean that we should quit our jobs and stay in the prayer room 24/7. But we should be in constant communication (prayer) with God.


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Make Us Bold Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

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1 THESSALONIANS 5:16-18

Prayer Pray for boldness. Today, as in Bible times, the gospel is met with hostility. It is a countercultural message that offends the very people it benefits. We receive God’s help to avoid shrinking from hostility when we ask for boldness in the face of opposition. Note how the first believers instinctively knew to ask for boldness, and how that prayer was answered. “And when they heard it, they lifted their voices together to God and said, ‘…. And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness…’”

“And when they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled

with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness” ACTS 4:24-31

Throughout these last 30 days we’ve been praying for our world, our church, and ourselves. How will you put into action the things that God has done in you? Take a few moments to sit with God. Who has He laid on your heart? What will you do differently? Let the Lord fill you afresh with His Spirit and then go boldly in your world declaring and demonstrating His love!

Daily Journal ++ One new thing I have learned today ++ One thing the Holy Spirit has challenged me on today


riverlifebaptistchurch riverlifebaptistchurch

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church@riverlifechurch.org.au 3378 3595 W riverlifechurch.org.au

Jennifer Street, 17 Mile Rocks Qld 4073

30 Days of Prayer (June 2018)  
30 Days of Prayer (June 2018)  
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