If you were at one of our gatherings on Sunday you'll have heard me talk about three habits I'm encouraging all of us to make part of our lives in 2020. These are:
- Pray alone every day
- Pray with others every week
- Fast for breakthrough every month
We want to use our January week of prayer and fasting, which runs from Monday 13th to Sunday 19th January, to begin to make these habits something which becomes part of the natural rhythm of our lives. I'd encourage all of us during the week of prayer to:
- Every day during the week of prayer find a few minutes to follow Jesus command in Matthew 6:6 to 'go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father'. The door doesn't have to be a physical door (I know that for many of us praying in nature is a great place to connect with God) but the door represents us finding a place where we remove ourselves from the distractions of other people, our phones, the washing pile - you know the stuff. If you don't have another plan for how to pray in that time I'd suggest just being silent for a bit, then reading slowly and thoughtfully through a psalm and after that have a conversation with God about whatever is real for you right now or has been prompted by your reading.
- Once during the week find an hour to get alone with God and pray. We're producing an hour of guided prayer which you can play on a phone or computer to take you through an hour using the Lord's Prayer as an outline - I'll post a link to it once it is available. We'll also have printouts of this on Sunday for anyone who can't get access to the audio version. You might want to consider booking the prayer room in Bracknell to do this, but if that doesn't work for you please find another place where you can be comfortable and undistracted for an hour.
- Come to our Kingdom Come night of prayer in Bracknell or West Wight on Wednesday 15th which runs from 7.30-9.30pm. If you can't make it in person we'll be live streaming it so you can join in remotely. (As an aside we've also started live streaming the 9.30am meeting from Bracknell every Sunday so you can always catch a Sunday Kerith meeting wherever you are in the world!).
- Fast at some point during the week, and use the time you free up to pray. As you fast choose one area where you long to see breakthrough in 2020 and pray specifically into that area. It might be something in your own life, the life of somebody close to you or an issue where you'd love to see God break in. You can find some great guidelines on fasting here.
There's much more we'll be saying about prayer throughout 2020. For the next four Sundays we are going to look at a model of prayer based on the Lord's Prayer which I think is going to be incredibly helpful. On Sunday 19th we're going to give everyone a prayer guide for 2020 with ideas on how to pray and fast throughout the year. You might even want to join me on one of my 6.45am Facebook prayer casts where a bunch of us gather from Monday to Thursday to pray. For now can I encourage all of us to think about how to make these three habits part of our lives, and if we're not doing them already start to form those habits in the week of prayer.
I'm so excited for all that God is going to do in and through as we get closer to him. Thank you for coming on the journey with us.