Pastors Steve & Sharon would like to invite you to join us for 21 Days of Prayer & Fasting
To sign up for the 21 Day Fast & our Devotional CLICK HERE
By Romey Ritter
You are the God who performs miracles; You display Your power among the people, Psalm 77:14.
The early church was birthed in power. Their normal-Christian experience was one of hundreds of people being saved daily; miracles, daily; the power and presence of God in their midst, daily. This was normal.
So was prayer and fasting.
Many of us can read through the New Testament in awe as we think about the early church and the impact it had. We can read about the rapid expansion of the church, their meeting places, the extraordinary miracles God did among them, and we can think, They were the super apostles. They were the super Christians…
The fact is they were no different from you and me. They were people in desperate need of a savior and in desperate need of His help everyday of their lives. But, they leant into God through prayer and fasting.
An easily overlooked yet very important mark of the early church was their devotion to seeking God through prayer and fasting. It was common for whole churches to gather, sometimes daily, to pray. They would pray overnight. They would meet in people’s homes, sometimes in the Jewish temples, at times they would meet just outside the walls of their city. And all the people fasted twice a week, no food till sundown—even the kids!!
This was no small devotion.
Their commitment to prayer and fasting was in essence a humbling of themselves in recognition of their desperate need of God, seeking Him so that His will would be done through their lives powerfully.
The New Testament stories can be our stories. Miracles can be our normal. God still wants to move through His people powerfully. He wants to show up in our lives to show us He is good and strong and generous. He wants to provide for us and be our ever-present help (Psalm 46:1).
God wants us to live lives that are full of His power because when we live full of His power our lives are made better, and so are the many people’s lives we come in contact with everyday.
There are no short cuts to accessing God’s power. No magic bullets. It’s simply when we get desperate for Him, humbling ourselves and devoting ourselves to prayer and fasting to seek Him.
We can have as much of God in our daily lives as we want. The question is, How desperate are we for His presence and His power?
I hope and pray that as this 21 day fast wraps up that this will be just the beginning…
He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted, Job 5:9.
By Clayton Ritter
Carrying God’s heart
Elijah prayed, “Lord… let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. 37 Answer me, Lord, answer me, so these people will know that you Lord, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.” (1 Kings 18:36-37)
Elijah was a prophet of God at a time when not many people were following God. In fact, most had given over to compromise and were worshipping idols like Baal. Have you ever faced a time when following Jesus wasn’t very popular, like you were swimming upstream in a world of compromise?
Elijah was different, not because he had special powers or because God loved him more than anyone else. Elijah was different because he had a personal relationship with God. And Elijah wanted the people to see Who the One True God was, and return to Him. He set up the ultimate showdown against 450 of the false prophets of Baal. He ordered sacrifices and told the people the True God would answer with fire.
You can read the story in 1 Kings 18.
The false prophets began to cry out over their sacrifice in the morning and nothing happened. The hours dragged on into the afternoon and the prophets were growing desperate and began dancing, striving, and even cutting themselves, but still nothing. All their religious display, their attention-seeking devotion yielded nothing. No fire. Their god was silent.
This is exactly what a life chasing after the wrong things will do. We lose our confidence, strive, look for attention in the wrong things, and even seek to impress others with our level of devotion.
Elijah was different.
He knew God would show up. More importantly, he knew why…
“…and that you are turning their hearts back again.”
Elijah knew God would answer with fire and consume his sacrifice because he held in his heart the heart of the Father for the people. And when he prayed God answered powerfully and the people repented.
When all the people saw this, they fell prostrate and cried, “The Lord—he is God! The Lord—he is God!” (1Kings 18:39)
Our 21 day fast is a sacrifice similar to Elijah’s in that as we fast we become keenly aware of God’s continual presence in our lives. He is real. He is all-powerful. And will answer us in miraculous ways.
As we near the end of our fast, let’s lean into God like never before. Let’s carry His heart for our families, our cities and the nations. Let’s pray that people’s hearts would turn back to Him, blind eyes will be opened, bodies healed, strongholds broken, and let’s see the nations cry, The Lord—he is God!
By Sandy Hopkins
Recently a beautiful lady and her two daughters were driving to Virginia Beach from another state to attend Devoted Conference. It was raining and the roads were particularly icy that first night. They got into a car accident but fortunately no one was injured.
Within minutes of the accident, one of the daughters called her dad who was still at home, and as he began to pray for his family God went into action.
My husband and I helped them out of the rain and safely to their hotel. At the hotel, they discovered their room just happened to be next door to one of their very good friends from another state. In what would seem a very random circumstance was in fact God setting up exactly what they needed while in Virginia Beach, the comfort and care of a very close friend right next door in the hotel.
As I watched this story unfold, I was once again reminded how real God is. God is so big, so strong, so amazing, and yet still so interested in even the smallest details of our lives. No request is too big, nor any detail too small for our amazing God. The details matter to God because we matter to Him!
Prayer! God has made it so easy. We just talk to Him. Out loud. In our head. In our car. Whenever. Wherever. And what do we pray? We tell Him how much we love Him. We ask for His help. We tell Him about the things we think no one else understands. We ask Him to intervene in situations. We ask Him for wisdom to raise our kids. For courage, healing, financial help…
Nothing is too big or too small for our amazing God. The catch is, we have to pray.
We are a church that prays. The church is not a building. The church is you and me. Let’s go to God and make known our needs, requests and petitions and lean into His miracle working arms like never before. Just imagine what He can do with a group of people that dare to believe He will answer our prayers!
Psalm 34:5-6 MSG
“Look at him; give him your warmest smile. Never hide your feelings from him. When I was desperate, I called out, and God got me out of a tight spot.”
By Dave Hummel
When I pray for my son at night, it makes me think about the prayers my dad prayed for me when I was young. I’m sure there were many times those prayers got me through situations that in the natural would have gone very badly, had I not a praying dad. Now my Dad is facing some very challenging health issues, now it’s my turn to fast and pray for him.
The prayers of a father for a son and a son for a father have a special bond. As all parents have learned, you don’t know how deep you can love until you have a child. Someone once put it this way, “It’s like having your heart live outside your body.”
Was this the way God the Father felt when His son Jesus walked the earth? Imagine how hard it was to know Jesus would have to endure the cross? I think about the incredible sacrifice this was, and it was made for you and me so that we could have a relationship with God and be saved.
God the Father spoke his love for his son when Jesus was being baptized in Matthew 3:16-17.
And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”
These words weren’t just for the crowd that had gathered. God, as a Father, was speaking to Jesus His Son. God wanted Jesus to know how much He loved Him and how pleased He was at Jesus’ obedience. These were words from a father to a son.
Let’s take today and pray for our children and our parents…
Let’s lean into God like never before and believe that his hand will protect, guide and prosper all of them.
By Josh Coxwell
Each year my wife and I put a theme to our year. Rather than just letting the years pass by, we intentionally speak to the year and state what it will look like, giving the year purpose.
This year we want God to stretch us and show us more of what He has for us. More than hoping for a good year, hoping for growth and change, we are praying and asking God to move in 2015 in a big way. We are believing for answers to big prayers.
Theming the year and praying is powerful, but sometimes our prayers are not enough. I know at times we all can feel like our prayers fall on deaf ears. We might think, “God, I proclaimed this year was going to be amazing but nothing is turning out the way we had hoped.” We might feel like we are doing all the right things but not getting the results we had hoped for. Sometimes we feel like we’re alone in our praying.
We are never alone, God hears it all, it’s just that sometimes prayer isn’t enough. We have to be willing to humble ourselves through fasting to see breakthrough.
Daniel said, “I turned to the Lord God and pleaded with him in prayer and petition, and in fasting,” Daniel 9:3.
Daniel knew through prayer and fasting he could keep his thoughts more focused on God. We can too. Fasting helps us become more aware our surroundings, our own vulnerabilities, and we become more sensitive to God.
During this time of fasting as the usual distractions fade, allow God to speak to you about you. It’s during these times we suddenly realize how wrong we were to think our prayers were not being answered, or that God wasn’t listening. God was there all the time, listening and speaking all the time. The problem was we weren’t listening.
This year our church’s theme is “A church that prays, leaning into God like never before”. As we fast and pray together, we will see incredible breakthrough. Don’t just sacrifice the convenient, give up something of value and watch as God opens our eyes to a much bigger world.
Take time to pray, press in, to see what God is doing and listen to what He is saying. Believe for a bigger year and for God to expand your thinking!
By Gaye Techanchuck
“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Isaiah 58:6.
I can remember when I was a little girl my mother would not eat at certain times, but she always had the family meals ready. I often asked her if she was feeling okay? She would reply things are great.
As years went by I learned my mother was fasting. What was interesting was to see the times she would fast, big changes in the family, when something big was happening at church, and when she needed wisdom. I noticed she was always up early in the mornings praying during those times.
A very significant fast was when I was very sick. Doctors could not diagnose my illness, but Mom knew what to do: fast and pray. When the doctors gave us no hope of any recovery, my mother spent many days fasting and praying. I know I am here today because my mom sought the face of God through prayer and fasting. She taught me if you want to get God’s perspective, sometimes you have to deny yourself and really seek God.
My mothers fasting broke the yoke of sickness over me.
When I need to step up my prayer life, it is fasting that makes all the difference. Prayer and fasting are like the power twins to seeking God.
By Adam Scharfe
Mountains and Burning Bushes
1 Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. 2 There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. 3 So Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.” 4 When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!” And Moses said, “Here I am.” Exodus 3:1-4.
I love being high in the mountains. Early in the morning the air is crisp and cold. Rays of light glow through the misty canopy of colorful leaves. The air is thick with the subtle smell of pine, oak, birch, sometimes maple. This kind of sensory overload calls to something deep within me.
A little over twelve months ago, my family and I emigrated from an Australian city nestled on one side of the Great Dividing Range. It’s a mountain range similar to the Appalachian Mountains. We now live on the eastern side of North Carolina and there are a number of differences between where I came from and where I live now. The main one, there is not a single mountain in sight, not for miles. It’s flat for as far as the eye can see. Oh, how I miss the mountains.
Back in Australia the mountains were my favorite place for so many reasons, but the most important was recreation, soul re-creation! I can recall so many defining God moments in those mountains. Times of re-fining, re-freshing and re-creating my passion and love for Jesus and the desire for Gods House to become all God wants it to be. I loved to meet with God right there in the mountains, my mountains away from it all.
Last Fall I made a trip west to the Appalachian Mountains. As I stood high in the mountains again, I was encountering God afresh. I was reminded of Exodus 3, the story of Moses living in the wilderness, wading through the seemingly mundane, seemingly detached from destiny, when an unusual event led Moses to climb a mountain. There he experienced a re-fining, re-freshing and re-creating God encounter—the burning bush.
Remember when everything around you seems flat or even mundane, find your “mountain place.” Pray and lean into God like never before. Pray just like Moses and say, “Here I am.” Allow God to Re-fine, Re-fresh and Re-create in you:
- your passion for Jesus
- your purpose and destiny in God
- your Love for Gods house
THE MOUNTAIN IS CALLING… will you respond?
By Chris Elliott
“For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live. For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.” Romans 8:13-14.
This is a great encouragement to Lean into God like never before!
In The Message version this scripture reads, “God’s Spirit beckons. There are places to go!” This is the Holy Spirit calling us forward to a new life, led and guided by Him.
The phrase used in this verse, “If you live according to the flesh you will die” has a very interesting meaning. It can be interpreted as the natural death of a man, but there is a figurative interpretation too, it compares our fleshly decisions to trees that dry up and seeds that rot when planted. Lifelessness!
It is very easy for us to fall prey to the desires of our flesh, but through prayer and fasting we become more aware of this tendency, because through prayer and fasting, our ability to hear God’s voice and quickly respond increases. And so much so, that the old voices of insecurity, bad habits and fear lose their voice over our lives as we tune into the voice of God. The hope, love and newness of life we discover in this process of being led by the Holy Spirit is a priceless treasure.
Prayer and fasting is amazing.
By Bobby Harrell
Colssians 3:2 – Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things.
Have you ever been distracted? You were supposed to be doing one thing, but your mind kept wandering. I have been there. Distraction is something that mankind has been dealing with since the beginning of time. I can recall times of prayer where one minute I was connecting with God so strongly and the next minute I was thinking about what I was going to eat for lunch. It happens in times of fasting also. I have had the opportunity to do a few Daniel fasts in my life and it seems like during those times, no matter how hard I fight it, the one thing that keeps popping into my head is chocolate chip cookies, with peanut butter… and maybe a glass of milk. Even as you read this, you may find yourself thinking of all the things you aren’t eating right now.
When Paul instructs us to set our minds on things above and not on earthly things, it’s an instruction is to control our thoughts. In other words our thought life is so important, because it leads our actions. During these 21 days of prayer and fasting, be encouraged to capture your thoughts and lead your actions each day. Don’t allow distraction to set in, and take you away from the task at hand. The enemy knows that prayer is powerful, and if he could just distract us from task at hand we would forfeit that power.
So, let us set our minds… Continue to pray for that person you are believing to bring to church, that they would give their life to Christ. Continue to pray for the needs in your family. Continue to pray for our church and our cities. Lets lean into God like never before and watch Him do what only He can do.
By Chuck Chalfant
The Persistent Widow
Luke 18:1 – 8
“Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. “
As a pretty laid back person, this parable gets me every time. I pray. I put my request in God’s hands and then I wait to see what happens. Isn’t it up to God to choose what to do from there?
But this parable and others show me there’s a persistence in prayer. Daniel prayed for three weeks and was finally visited by an angel with his answer. I’m not saying an angel will bring your answer directly to you, but be persistent like Daniel and the widow to get results.
Jesus had taught the disciples to pray a few chapters earlier in Luke, now He was showing them that they also needed to “always pray and not give up.” So pray specifically, in faith and without giving up. You can’t wear God out.
By Lainie Williams
Praying for the unsaved…
My brothers and sisters, I pray constantly to God for the salvation of my people; it is the deep desire of my heart. (Romans 10:1 VOICE)
My daily prayer is that the Lord will use me as His vessel. I have a heart for others and I do not want to miss any opportunity to reach those who do not know Him. Whether it is showing God’s love by an act of kindness, inviting them to church, or building trust in a friendship, I am willing to play my part. There is nothing like an answered prayer of having a family member, co-worker, neighbor, or even a perfect stranger come to church with you for the very first time. Every time they come to church they will experience God’s presence in worship, hear the Gospel, and have an opportunity to make a decision for Christ. There have been times I prayed for and invited someone numerous times to church only to see them come with another person. My prayer was still answered! I planted a seed in faith and in prayer while someone else brought them in. That’s the power of a “bringing” church.
There may be some people you have been praying for months or even years and have not seen anything come to pass, YET!!! But do not be discouraged, God is in control. He hears your prayers and is at work ‘behind the scenes’.
God does not just sweep life away; instead, He devises ways to bring us back when we have been separated from Him. (2 Samuel 14:14b NLT)
Pray the Lord will devise a way to bring them back to Him. This is not hard for God because Jesus already conquered sin and death. I have friends and family that are not local and are not part of my everyday life. My prayers are for the Lord to reveal Himself strongly to them, for other Christians to cross their paths and play their part in sharing the Gospel. Who will you pray for during our fast? What seed can you plant in their heart to move them closer to a relationship with Jesus?
By Joe Riddle
“Like Never Before…”
Some of history’s most spellbinding occurrences are the direct result of the global church leaning into the power of God accessed through prayer. Generations have been transformed through amazing periods of revival, nations have been brought forth, the church has flourished in despotic nations where little else has been able to survive, physical walls have fallen in cities like Berlin, injustices have been overcome. The list goes on and on…
We are a church that prays. We are a church that has decided that this will be a year in which we lean into God like never before. Those words “like never before” should ignite a fire within us. The reality is God is moving like never before. As we pray, we position ourselves to be a part of His work. Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 2:9,
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has planned for those who love Him…”
God has things planned for Wave Church, things unlike anything we have seen in the past sixteen years. That is exciting! As we set aside this 21-day period to seek God in prayer, let’s have the faith to see God move in our church and in our personal lives like never before. Don’t allow what has or has not happened in your past to limit how our miracle-working God can operate in your present or future.
Stir up your faith today. Ask God for the miraculous. Pray the kinds of prayers that shake nations, confound doctors, and turn even the hardest of hearts to the love of Jesus. Where we are headed in 2015 is not simply more of the same. Where we are going in our marriages, in our families, in our businesses, in our health, in our dreams, in our church is unlike anywhere we have been before.
By Sue Fitzgerald
In today’s fast paced world we often make things more complicated than they are. I think this is true with prayer. We worry whether we are praying the right way, using the right words, at the right time. Often we pray only when we are hurting, worrying, or in a crisis. But prayer is really as simple as just talking to God. No big words are required; no special lingo. Prayer is just a heart-to-heart conversation with God whether things are going great, just so-so or when it seems like life couldn’t get any worse. The bible says, “Pray without ceasing… In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18 (KJV).
God showed me in a powerful way early in my Christian walk that prayers don’t need to be complicated, long or fancy to be heard. At 2 am one morning when I was still a Naval Officer, I was awoken by a call from Bob, my right hand man at work, saying that he would not be in the next morning. His mom was visiting and became deathly ill. She had to be medevac’d via helicopter to a major hospital in Seattle. She was in surgery as we spoke and was not expected to survive. When I got off the phone, I simply prayed, “God, please let Mrs. Smith live, I don’t think she knows You” and I went back to sleep.
The next day, Bob called me and said, “Something weird happened. When my mom came out of surgery, the first thing she asked was where you were. I told her you were at work. She told me to thank you for the prayer.” I had only met this woman once briefly the previous day and she wasn’t even there when I said that prayer. But God heard my simple twelve word prayer at 2 am, healed her and the Holy Spirit let her know that I’d been praying for her. Isn’t God amazing!
So as you pray during this 21-day fast, remember God isn’t looking for complicated, long or fancy prayers. Just thank Him for who He is and tell Him what’s on your heart. Pray for Ps Steve and Sharon and the vision of Wave Church, all our campuses to grow and thrive, and for people to be saved and planted in the House like never before. Pray that Wave TV will have exponential impact and people’s lives will be radically transformed. This fast can be so powerful as we all engage as part of “A Church That Prays!”
By Robert Cameron
As a younger man, I never was one of those people who fasted. I would laugh at my dad who was always fasting and praying. However, as I get older I have certainly changed as I see the power of fasting and prayer.
I have found that fasting is not so much about giving up but more about leaning in. It’s not that God needs our fasting; we do, as it sharpens us and feeds the inner man (the soul). Years ago a man in my church told be “You have two men inside of you the ‘Old man’ and the ‘New man’ the one you feed the most will grow the most”
When we fast and pray, we feed that new man (spiritual man) and that makes us keener in the things of God. A couple of years ago, I fasted for two relatives of mine to be free from drugs and I am happy to say that today, they are drug free.
As we think about this year in the life of Wave Church, I think of the people who are going to come to church for the first time and that is motivating me to fast and pray that the Holy Spirit will bring them to a place where they will accept Jesus as their Savior.
In Acts.13.2 The disciples are fasting and praying for direction for their leadership and the Holy Spirit spoke and gave it.
Why don’t you take time during this fasting season in our church to believe God for direction for you, your family, friends and your future?
By Josh Kicker
“…three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before.” -Daniel 6:10
One of the greatest sustaining factors in our walk with Christ is the consistency of our prayer life. Faced with great opposition and in the midst of being thrown into the Lion’s Den, Daniel knelt and prayed, “just as he had done before.”
I love that phrase: “just as he had done before.” If we examine our lives and asked ourselves when faced with opposition, what is our predominant response? Is it to panic? Freak out? Or consistently seek God?
My hope during this time of prayer and fasting is that I can continue to cultivate a heart response toward God that says, “no matter what I face, my life will reflect consistency with You.”
Prayer and fasting doesn’t change God’s mind so much as it changes my mind. Fasting from food and “things” that distract me from the kingdom of God can soften my heart and still my soul to hear His voice.
Let’s have minds and hearts that are leaning into God like never before. We all play an integral part of being a church that prays. Together we can accomplish so much in prayer; from individual deepening of our relationship to collectively seeing the church advance through the power of a unified vision.
By James Shupert
Whenever God does something new, He involves people — often unlikely people, frequently surprised and alarmed people. He asks them to trust him in a new way, to put aside their natural reactions, to listen humbly for a fresh word and to act on it without knowing exactly how it’s going to work out. Reading the Bible without knowing in advance what God is going to say takes humility. Like Joseph, husband to Mary, we may have to put our initial reactions on hold and be prepared to hear new words, to think new thoughts, and to live them out. We all come with our own questions, our own sorrows and frustrations, our own desires. God will deal with them in his own way, but He will do so as part of his own much larger and deeper purposes. Who knows what might happen, this year, if even a few of us were prepared to listen to God’s word in scripture in a new way, to share the humility of Joseph, and to find ourselves caught up in God’s rescue operation?
Speak to us, Father, in a new way as we read your word. Help us to hear your voice and follow where you lead.
By Reggie Etheridge
Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where He prayed. Mark 1:35
I love to get away, head into the woods where it’s quiet, and have alone time with Jesus. He always fills my soul with freshness during these times.
During Jesus’ three years of earthly ministry He spent a lot of time with people. As He ministered to the people, He also showed us the secret to growing close to the Father was to withdraw and have quiet time through prayer.
Jesus needed the serenity that being alone with God brings. He also needed the clear communication that comes from quiet and focused prayer. We need this too. We only get this when we withdraw from the busyness of life and go to our quiet place.
During this year, discipline yourself to get alone with God and lean into Him like never before! Listen to the Father’s voice as He guides you into all He has purposed and planned for your life. Also, during these times pray for our church, our leaders, our community, and the world!
Heavenly Father, I am so grateful for the quiet moments that You and I are able to spend together. Help me keep my priorities in order today, and I pray that I may be a blessing to someone’s life. Continue to use Wave Church to touch my community and those around me. In Jesus name, amen.
By Bill Mozingo
When my wife Darrah brought me to Wave Church 10 years ago, our lives were completely changed and we were faced with a very important question: Now What?
We didn’t know how to “be” Christian and we had a lot of questions. Matthew 6:33 became the verse that would keep us pursuing the right answers. We didn’t always know what to do or why we needed to do it, but we could always “seek first the Kingdom of Heaven” and simply trust God with the rest. We learned to seek God in our worship, in our giving, in our serving, and in our prayer. Although we didn’t really know how to pray, we did know it was about connecting with our God in Heaven.
Prayer can be clumsy and awkward. One-sided conversations tend to be that way. When we pray, we often run out of things to say and it becomes one long monologue of our needs, our desires, our frustrations, our short-comings, our failures, God’s lack of timing, etc. Prayer, however, isn’t meant to be a monologue. It’s always meant to be a dialogue between the Creator and his finest creation. The problem is: we don’t stop praying long enough to allow God to answer.
Prayer should involve moments of talking and moments of listening. It’s in the stillness of His presence that we can listen for God’s response, which quickly turns prayer from an awkward rant to a meaningful conversation. I learned through prayer, and only through prayer, that God is more interested in relationship and not rhetoric. He wants to talk and isn’t worried about technique. Heartfelt prayer, without any fear of doing it wrong, turns our conversation into communion, and it’s in communion that we draw closer to God. This is God desires from us, that we draw close.
If we can slow ourselves down and seek Him, like Matthew 6:33 says, then the things that concern us about prayer (how we should pray, or what words to use) become less important, and we learn what matters most is simply getting in His presence. Our focus shifts from ourselves to Him, this changes our whole perspective on prayer. The goal: we become more like Him.
“A church that prays: Leaning into God like never before…”
By Brook Chalfant
I saw the Lord. He was sitting on a lofty throne, and the train of his robe filled the Temple. … [Mighty seraphim] were calling out to each other, “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of Heaven’s Armies! The whole earth is filled with his glory!” Isaiah 6:1 & 3
Take a step back for a minute, and consider the magnitude, holiness, and love of our God. Scripture says that Isaiah was so overwhelmed by the holiness of God that all he could see was the weight of his sin and the gravity of his unclean heart. “I’m as good as dead,” he told himself. Yet, in this moment of coming face to face with the presence of God, Isaiah also encountered His amazing grace. An angel of the LORD touched his lips and declared, “Look. Gone is your guilt, your sins wiped out completely.” Then, a laser-focused Isaiah raised his hand … humbled, strengthened, and ready … and said, “Here I am. Send me.”
As you pray today, let the magnitude and holiness of God cover you. Let His grace heal and release you. And let His perfect love empower you. God is stirring your heart because He’s called you to a life of powerful purpose. It’s time to step out … in your prayers, in your relationships and work, in renewing your mind and activating your faith … and to know that God sees you, hears you, and will use you for His glory.
A good prayer to pray today:
God, more than anything, I want to put up my hand and say, “Here I am. Send me,” whether that means sending me more deeply into the trenches of prayer, more brightly as a light to my family and neighbors, or more faithfully in service to others. I know that first, I need to acknowledge your greatness and receive your beautiful grace. I know that you alone are my portion and strength. Thank you that you have chosen me. And because of you, I have purpose and hope that will change my world. Amen
By Derek Holser
In his essay The Efficacy of Prayer, C.S. Lewis writes, “Prayer is request. The essence of request, as distinct from command, is that it may or may not be granted.”
I love this quote because it reminds me that prayer is much bigger than my personal wish list. It’s not just me asking God for stuff, like a 6-year-old writing to Santa. If I keep this perspective, I learn to trust Him more. He knows what’s best. It reminds me that ultimately, as Philippians 4:6 tells us, “Do not be anxious about anything, but…present your requests to God.”
Clearly God wants to hear our requests. And He wants to bless us. But, He also wants us to have the courage to not worry, even if the answer isn’t what we wanted.
The ultimate example of prayer is found in the Garden of Gethsemane, when Jesus prayed to be set free from the crucifixion. Yet, after lots of heartache, Jesus finally said the greatest words ever uttered, “Not my will, but Yours,” to God. In that moment, Jesus expressed what prayer is all about. It’s about being real with our Heavenly Father, for Jesus held nothing back. But it’s also about giving Him the final say.
When we fast and pray, we reduce the temptation to focus on ourselves. We begin to overcome the flesh and go deeper in the Spirit and surrender our desires to His will. This is the beauty of a church-wide year of prayer and fasting. When we collectively join together and Lean Into God Like Never Before, I believe He will answer our prayers and He will reveal Himself in ways we never thought possible. Join us, this year. Fast. Pray. Lean Into God, and together we will see His power in 2015!
Congratulations! You are now beginning a 21-day period of fasting and prayer. During these next 3 weeks, we will believe together for miracles, for breakthrough in our spiritual lives, and to lean into God like never before. For some, this may be and tried and true practice and part of your ongoing relationship with God. For others, this may be the first step towards a deeper relationship with our Creator and Savior, Jesus. Wherever you find yourself on this journey, know that although this will be difficult, the rewards are a sharpened spirituality for you and a stronger church as a whole as each one of us plays our part. Also, know that you are not alone, but are joining together with thousands who will do this together. Here are some things to keep in mind over the next 21 days.
What is a fast?
A Biblical fast means to go without food for a period of time to humble ourselves so that we can be free to seek God. (2 Chronicles 7:14) We put aside earthly appetites to develop the right spiritual appetites.
What does this look like for me?
Although a true Biblical fast is going without food, the principle of abstaining from something in order to pray and seek God is an honorable practice. We encourage you to find a plan you can do for the full 21 days. Whatever you choose to do, make sure to consult a medical professional before making any drastic dietary changes. Here are some other suggested options for you:
- Only eat 1 meal a day for 21 days
- Skip a meal once a day for 21 days
- Abstain from a certain food that you really like
- Abstain from all social media
- Do 5 days without any food and give up coffee for the remaining 16 days
These are just a few suggestions but make sure you spend time every day on your own in prayer. Fasting without prayer is just a diet.
What should I pray about?
We want to lean into God like never before and we are a church that prays. Pray for the breakthrough you are believing for, pray for the salvation of those in your world who don’t yet know Jesus, pray for our pastors and leaders, pray for our government and elected officials, pray in the Spirit, pray in the morning, pray at night, thank God for what He has done and who He is, pray when you’re hungry, pray that God’s Kingdom would be established on the earth. Pray, pray pray! Pray for the “Big 5” of Wave Church:
- Wave Church
- Wave Conferences (Devoted and Wave Conference)
- Wave TV
- Wave Publishing
- Wave Leadership College
These will be our main focus for so let’s cover them all in prayer. Check back each day to this page for the latest blog from our team. Happy fasting!