2017 Week of Prayer & Fasting
So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. - Hebrews 4:16 (NIV)
New Year's Prayer Devotional by The Bethel Christian Pastoral Team
Day 1 - January 8th | "Fasting and Prayer" by Pastor Dan Lund
As we here at Bethel Christian start our week of fasting and prayer for our church I feel it’s important to first focus on what it’s all about. The one thing that the disciples asked Jesus to teach them about wasn’t carpentry, although it was his family trade, or even fishing, although he could fill the nets when others weren’t catching a thing. What they wanted to know about was his prayer life. They had seen the power of his prayer life as people were healed from sickness and disease and set free from demonic affliction, oppression and possession. They were keen enough to know that because he got up early in the mornings and sought the Lord and made those times of solitude in the Father’s presence, it was the reason He moved in power. His public prayer life was a manifestation and overflow of his private prayer life. And Jesus would challenge us to do the same. Jesus said, “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you” Matthew 6:5-6. There’s nothing wrong with praying out loud or with exuberance and we’ll never confuse God, but if it’s for show and the only time you pray is to be heard then it’s in vain. Whether you pray loud, quietly or silently, your public prayer should always be an overflow of your private prayer life. Jesus also taught that some prayers will only be answered when they are connected to fasting, Matthew 17:21. So, my Resolution Challenge for us all this week is to make a private place of prayer in our home where we can spend daily time in His presence. And secondly, pray about how you’ll fast in some way this week by refraining from certain foods or media or recreation, and take that additional time to pray more. I believe that as we all join in this time of fasting and prayer – victories will happen in Jesus Name!