40 Days of Prayer 2019

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in 40 dop

Day 12: January 12, 2019

As our week draws to a close and you prepare your heart for corporate worship tomorrow, we remember the last section we studied in Psalm 27:4. As David moved from his decision to his desire, he gives us insight into his delight. He longed to gaze upon the beauty – or the delightfulness – of the Lord and to seek Him – or inquire of Him – in His temple. This was not something he kept to himself. Instead, he invites you and me to “taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in Him” (Psalm 34:8).

The greatest delight is in gazing at the beauty of the Lord – His goodness and kindness – while also seeking His will and following His counsel. Unfortunately, many people think that the law of the Lord is too harsh or restrictive. They fail to realize that God’s kindness is intended to lead us to repentance (Romans 2:4). They want to love God on their terms and forget that it was our Lord who said, “If you love me, keep my commands” (John 14:15). We would do well to remember to “fix our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart” (Hebrews 12:2-3).

Jesus came to restore the broken relationship and to re-establish intimacy with us. Will you take time to gaze on Him and inquire about His counsel? In the space below, write out attributes of Christ, perhaps a favorite verse, or a time when you’ve trusted Him in difficulty and experienced His faithfulness. May this help you fix your eyes on the beauty of the Lord!

Prayer Guide
Tomorrow is the Lord’s Day, and we gather to worship corporately. But we also want to pray corporately.

Therefore, you are invited and encouraged to attend the 9:00 a.m. prayer service tomorrow to experience praying with other believers in a special corporate setting.

Prior to coming to our church gathering tomorrow, take time to pray for the service, for those serving in various ways, and for the people who are attending. 

Church-Wide Prayer Focus
Pray that every guest tomorrow will be greeted warmly and that all Harvesters will reach out to new people naturally. 

Pray for these Harvesters:

Colt Gerrard

Walt & Janet Gillespie

Hanna Anita Erika Giusino

Missionaries: Don & Sai Hill (Thailand)

Posted by Michael Grande
in 40 dop

Day 11: January 11, 2019

In the second study this week, we turned our attention to David’s desire to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of his life in intimate communion with God. Despite all the trouble around him, David’s desire was the Lord. He then described what that means: gazing on the beauty of the Lord and seeking Him in His temple. Whether you looked up the Hebrew words, or compared to other versions of the Bible, you discovered that to “seek Him in His temple” means more than simply looking for Him. To seek Him means to inquire of Him or to meditate on Him. And it is with that thought that you are invited to consider the words of Charles Spurgeon on this very topic:

Your eyes will behold the king in his beauty. – Isaiah 33:17

The more you know about Christ, the less will you be satisfied with superficial view of Him; and the more deeply you study His transactions in the eternal covenant, His engagements on your behalf as the eternal Security, and the fullness of His grace that shines in all His offices, the more truly will you see the King in His beauty. Learn to look at Him this way. Long increasingly to see Jesus. Meditation and contemplation are often like windows of gold and gates of silver through which we behold the Redeemer. Meditation puts the telescope to the eye and enables us to see Jesus in better fashion than we could have seen Him if we had lived in the days of His earthly sojourn. Our conversation ought to be more in heaven, and we should be more taken up with the person, the work, the beauty of our incarnate Lord. More meditation, and the beauty of our incarnate Lord. More meditation, and the beauty of the King would flash upon us with more splendor. Beloved, it is very probable that we will have such a sight of our glorious King as we never had before when we come to die. Many saints in dying have looked up from amidst the stormy waters and have seen Jesus walking on the waves of the sea and heard Him say, “It is I – do not be afraid.” Yes, when the building begins to shake, and the mortar falls away, we will see Christ through the studs, and between the rafters the sunlight of heaven will come streaming in. But if we want to see the King face to face in all His beauty, we must go to heaven for the sight or the King must come here in person. If only He would come on the wings of the wind! He is our Husband, and we are widowed by His absence; He is our fair and faithful Brother, and we are lonely without Him. Thick veils and clouds hang between our souls and their true life: When will the day break and the shadows run away? Let the long-expected day begin! (Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Evening, Wheaton: Crossway, 2003, November 16 Evening entry)

Prayer Guide
What keeps you preoccupied and distracted? Write these things down.

In what ways do you see Jesus as the beauty of the Lord? Write them down.

As you pray today, praise Jesus for those things you regard as beautiful about Him. Confess those things that distract you and ask Him to help you focus on those beautiful things…that you may experience what David prayed and dwell in the house of the Lord, today and all your days. 

Church-Wide Prayer Focuss
Pray that our pastors and leaders will be grace-oriented. 

Pray for these Harvesters:

Dave & Carol Garrott

Ruth Garrott

Ann & David Gatewood, Sarah Willis

Missionary: David Hancock (Peru)

Posted by Michael Grande
in 40 dop

Day 10: January 10, 2019

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Rest is exactly what King David needed. A lowly shepherd boy who eventually became king of Judah, and later all of flourishing Israel. Surrounded by armies. Under attack by the wicked. He was certainly weary and burdened. Yet, although in the midst of great danger and threats, David decided one thing: his desire was for intimacy with God. He penned the words in Psalm 27:4 about that one thing.

However, the relationship did not start there. This goes all the way back to the beginning, when God made man in His image. Yes, the creation of Adam and Eve is evidence of the capacity for relationships. But do not miss the relationship with God. Notice that immediately after Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, they covered themselves in their shame. And that was not all. When they heard the Lord, they hid themselves, and the Lord called to Adam, “Where are you?” (Genesis 3:9). Sometimes we overlook the significance of that question, but it bears noting. Certainly, the omniscient and omnipresent Creator knew Adam’s location. So why ask this question? Because the relationship had been broken. Intimacy was lost.

Fortunately, the story and the relationship did not end there. What followed was a tapestry woven through time and history in which God would make a covenant – an intimate relationship based on a promise – first with Abraham and then later through Jesus Christ. He rewards those who earnestly seek Him (Hebrews 11:6).

One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek (Psalm 27:4). David made a decision, and he decided to seek intimacy with God. As the rest of Psalm 27 unfolds, more of his intimate prayer to God is seen. He certainly would have agreed with the prophet Jeremiah, who wrote to those exiled in Babylon, “Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:12-13).

As I write this, I am convicted to pray more. I encourage you to consider David’s example and make the decision to seek God, to ask Him for intimate fellowship, in prayer today.

Prayer Guide
In the space below, write down areas in your life in which you are prone to neglect seeking God (work, hobbies, trial, activities, etc.).

Take some time to pray that God would remind you of His presence in those things. As you go about your day, take a moment to pray before engaging in them. 

Church-Wide Prayer Focus
Pray that every Harvester will receive God’s grace and give God’s grace to others. 

Pray for these Harvesters:

Zelalem Feleke & Emnet Demissie, Christian & Betselot

Daniel & Sarah Flippo, Brooke, Courtney, & Amy

Missionaries: Chris and Debbie Johnson, Brianna (Europe)

Posted by Michael Grande