Prayer and Fasting to Start the Year

Upcoming dates:

  • January 6: Day of Prayer and Fasting
  • January 12 – 6pm: Worship Gathering
  • January 12: 1st day of the 40 Day Prayer Challenge
  • January 26 – 10am: Worship Gathering
  • February 7-8 – Underground Open – Tampa, FL
  • February 21-23 – LFC Retreat – Fargo, GA

“The Son can do nothing by himself.  He can do only what he sees his Father doing.” (John 5:19) 

In the stories of Jesus, we often find him praying spontaneously.  On the other hand, we find him very intentionally setting aside time for prayer, often early in the morning and sometimes all night.  He habitually spent time with the Father but at times of starting new things or transitioning, he seemed to add to that habit.  He would strategically take extra time to prayer and sometimes to fast.   It’s safe to say that Jesus knew what his was mission was about and was skilled at executing it, but that didn’t stop him from dedicating time to prayer.

What was he doing in those times of prayer.  If you pay attention to what happens after he prayed, it’s clear he was seeking direction.  He seemed to take time  in the presence of his Father to reflect on what was happening, who was with him, and where he was.  From his own words, he was seeking to see what the Father was doing and that was part of discerning next steps.  Some of those steps were significant redirections.  He left crowds, (John 6:15), withdrew (Mark 1:38), or engaged (John 11) based on what he saw the Father doing.  

The beginning of a new year is a good time for us reflect on what has been happening in the presence of the Father.  It is a natural time to look back over the previous season, to seek the Lord, and to ask him to direct our next steps, to reveal how, where, and to whom He is calling us.

So I want to invite you to join me in imitating Jesus at the start of the year with a day of prayer and fasting on January 6.  (That’s a first day back to work for many.)

And I want to invite you to take part in the 40 Day Prayer Challenge beginning with Day 1 on January 12.  We’ll use Mark Batterson’s Draw the Circle Book again, and with that start date, we should wrap up the prayer challenge just in time for our February retreat.  A lot of us already have a copy of the book, but if you’d like a new book you can order one from Amazon or just let me know – we have a few spare copies to give away.

In our time together, we have found that prayer and fasting are helpful under any conditions – but the experience is richer when done in community.  So if you want to join us, let me know and we’ll connect you to a texting group that on the prayer and fasting journey through text.

Our Next worship gatherings – Sunday, Jan 12, 6-8pm (place tbd) and Sun Jan 26, 10-12am at the Wehmeiers.

Underground Open in Ybor City –  Friday-Saturday Feb 7-8.  A group of us are going to learn about micro churches and missional living from Tampa Underground.  Cost is $79 for registration.  If you decide to go, let us know.  Some of us are getting together on lodging.  It’d be cool to have you with us or close by.

LFC Retreat is February 21-23 at the ECO Lodge in Fargo, GA.  This year we’ll focus on the sacraments and the connections between the sacramental life and missional living.  The retreat is already paid for except for food – and we all pitch in for that.  We’ll just need to know ahead of time that you plan to be there, and we’ll coordinate.

About Pastor Jesse

I am someone loved by Jesus - a disciple, husband, father, pastor, and engineer. God has a mission and invites us into it. I want to do my part to encourage and equip people for life on that mission!
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