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Prayer for God’s Mission and Lent-Part 5
Small Faith in a Big God
We are moving along in our season of Lent. This past Sunday was the third Sunday of Lent. I am sorry about being late with this edition, but I was on vacation for these past two weeks. So now, I need to get back into doing the readings and discern what God is doing and get back into participating in Lent. Thanks for joining in me on this journey, praying for God’s mission and taking the time for Him to form you more into His image. It has been a great journey for me and I’m looking forward to what He has in store for all of us.
So far we have seen God’s mission starting to unfold. We have been challenged with the idea of having dual citizenship. And we have been taking the time to discern what it is that God is calling us to do for his mission. At the same time, we realize that we are sinners in need of repenting. One way I have fasted is to not listen to the radio when I’ve been in the car. Those times have become a time of prayer and discerning for me. I hope and pray that you have found ways this lenten season to pray and listen to God’s voice. You will be blessed if you do.
With no fruit, the tree must be cut down
This Weeks Readings
Let’s take the time to look at the readings from this past Sunday and get going on praying for God’s mission.
Isaiah 55.1-9: This passage starts out asking us to seek God. If you are thirsty, you can come to Him. If you need food, God will provide. I love these simple analogies that are used as ways we can think about how we seek Him and what we seek Him for. It is because His ways are higher than our ways and that His thoughts are not our thoughts. Friends, we need to remember this. God’s ways are really the best ways. And they are not our ways. They are better. What better reason to seek His will for our lives! And to trust Him when things don’t make sense. When things are not going the way you want, we can turn to God in prayer and tell Him how we feel. Something to remember when needed, yes?
Psalm 63.1-8: David starts this Psalm with writing about seeking God. He seeks God because God’s love is better than life. What a thought! Because of this, David clings to God because he knows that God will hold him up. Do you believe this? Do you believe that God’s love is better than life? I don’t know about you, but this gives me more reason to seek Him. More reasons to want Him to lead me. Verse 6 is great, because it reminds us that even during the night we need to remember him. Recently, while on vacation, God woke me up after a dream that felt very real and I had to pray. My challenge to you is pray whenever God wakes you up. One of my editors told me that he’s tried to go back to sleep when the Lord wakes him up at night. Doesn’t work.
1 Corinthians 10.1-13: Paul starts out with giving us a warning from Israel's history of wandering in the wilderness. All of them received the same blessings, but most of them died before entering the promised land. Paul says that we shouldn’t test Christ the same way they did. We have the blessings, but that we need to act like we actually HAVE the blessings (not that we earn our salvation, but that our salvation CHANGES us). The best part of these verses deals with temptations. We are going to be tempted, but not in a way that isn’t common. Not only that, but God will give us a way out. This is certainly something to pray about and look for. Friend, what are the temptations in your life and what is the way out that God is giving you? Are you looking for them? Are you praying for them? Will you take take advantage of those ways when God shows them to you?
Luke 13.1-9: Jesus calls us to repent in these verses. He does so by talking about people who have suffered and reminds us that they haven’t sinned any more than anyone else. We need to remember that we will perish unless we repent. Jesus then tells the parable of the fig tree that doesn’t bear fruit. The owner wants to cut it down, but it is given grace for one more year. I think what Jesus is saying is that we need to repent and bear fruit. Our faith needs to produce good works, or we will be cut down. Friends, what is God calling YOU to DO? How are you loving others and sharing about Jesus with others? Lent can be a time to:
I think of following is similar to seeking
Theme of the Week
There are two things that jump out at me from these readings: repenting and seeking God. And these two things need to go together. First of all, we need to spend time in prayer, asking God to show us how we need to repent. This repenting could be to stop a sin or to engage in his mission. So, while you are fasting, take time to ask God how he wants you to repent. Ask Him for His plan to deal with temptations that come your way.
Then, pray that others will repent. Recently I watched a movie that takes places during War World II. The verse about having the faith of a mustard seed can move mountains was brought up. The main character, a boy, tried to move a real mountain, but the mountain that was really moved was the attitude of his brother towards a Japanese man in town. It got me thinking more about moving mountains, that sometimes the mountain is people’s hearts back towards God. My faith is in the fact that God wants to win people back to him.
Graces gives us another chance
Summary Prayer List
This week, I think I will wrap up this blog with a list that you can be praying for early and often. Or one that you can pray, pray, and pray about.
Seek God for how you need to repent. This could be an action that you need to stop and an action that you need to start.
Way out of Temptation: God has a way out for you, ask him what it is AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT.
Ask God what warnings He might have in scripture for you to keep in mind.