Today we begin the 30 day countdown to Easter Sunday and the launch of Renovation Church! It's also the beginning of our time of fasting and prayer. A process of sacrifice and exchange—fasting is an action that was so important to Jesus that he personally experienced it so that we would have an example to follow (Matt. 4:1-11; Matthew 6:16-18, and most of Acts). Just as the early church, we’re taking the next 30 days to fast and pray for important decisions to be made and for the new people who will come to know Christ. How can we, together, fast and pray for the next 30 days?
Exchange food for prayer. It’s probably the most popular—an additional hour committed to prayer can be a powerful way to discipline our prayer life and spend quality (and quantity) time at the feet of Jesus. Fasting from a basic necessity such as food allows hunger to serve as a reminder of our dependency on God. We'll utilize the reminder to pray continually without ceasing.
Exchange sleep for prayer. Rise earlier or stay up later. Spend that extra half-hour, hour (or more) with God. In the busyness of life it is often hard to find a time of quiet. To pause and give God the prayer and time he longs to have with us. Waking up early while the home is still quiet and everyone is asleep is a great way to spend focused time of prayer with God. It will leave us refreshed and more ready to take on the day the Lord has prepared.
Exchange television for prayer. According to the A.C. Nielsen Co., the average American watches more than 4 hours of TV each day. That’s 28 hours a week, or 2 months of nonstop TV-watching per year. In a 65-year life, that person will have spent 9 years glued to the tube. What if we gave up an hour of TV a day to seek after the heart of God? In the time we would’ve spent watching “The Voice,” God could change the world around us!
Exchange Facebook/social media for prayer. Facebook and social media are used to connect the world in ways we would have never been imagined 10 years ago—helping people navigate long distance relationships and even becoming a platform for movements. However, Facebook says the average American now spends 40 minutes a day checking their news feed. That could, instead, be time spent pulling out the Bible app—reading and praying.
Whatever we fast from, our prayer is that God would reach the Hampstead community in a miraculous way. This time will be an expression of worship and a joy to participate in. It will change us. We'll get to watch God do amazing things!
So, beginning today, lets join with friends all over the country in this special time of fasting and prayer. We can't wait to see what God does!
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