Day 19 – Humility

But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.” – James 4:6

If you’re like most of us, you’re perpetually in need of God’s mercy & grace. You make mistakes, bad decisions, or get involved in some sin that requires God to forgive you & have mercy on you. The good news is that God is quick to extend mercy, but there’s a condition.

Scripture tells us that God resists the proud. That term resist would be best defined as, “the range in battle against”. Pride puts you in a position of being in war with your Creator. Quite the contrary, we’re told that God gives more grace to the humble.

Humility makes you a candidate for the mercy of God to be manifest in your life. Pride is the only thing that will separate you from the mercy of God, because pride will cause you to believe you aren’t in need of asking for it. As you continue in this time of prayer & fasting, remember that humility is key. Keep your heart humble in front of God & be a candidate for an outpouring of His mercy.

Prayer Focus: Ask for & receive God’s mercy fresh & new today.

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Day 18 – Seek God First

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. – Matthew 6:33

Oftentimes in prayer & fasting, our priority becomes getting our own requests, petitions, and needs attended to. Although God is interested in our requests & needs, if all of our prayer is focused on our comforts and our needs, then our relationship with God becomes less as God & man and becomes more of an entitled son making demands of his father.

For prayer to be at it’s most effectual, the priority can’t be simply getting your needs met. The focus of prayer is relationship with God, connecting with His plans, and praying out His purposes. When you seek HIM first (not what He can do for you, but purely relationship with Him), the rest gets handled. The motive makes all the difference.

“Put first things first and we get second things thrown in: put second things first and we lose both first and second things.” – C.S. Lewis

Prayer Focus: Today, take time to get quiet before God & find out what He wants you to pray. Pray in connection with His purposes.

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Day 17 – Unwavering Faith

by  Stovall Weems, awake21.org

But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. – James 1:6

What do you expect when you pray?

When we pray with earnest expectation, we are exercising our faith. The earnest prayer of a righteous people produces powerful results (James 5:16), and the most earnest prayers come from us when we recognize our need for God.

There can be a natural tendency to shrink back when praying for the seemingly impossible, but we must remember that nothing is impossible with God (Luke 1:37). If we know the promises that God has given us, and understand His character and the principles by which He works, we can pray with confidence and trust Him for the answers.

What has caused you to waver in your expectation with God? James reminds us that faith and wavering are actually contradictory – James said “nothing wavering”. Know that God never wavers in His love for you. You can trust Him completely.

“When we depend upon organizations, we get what organizations can do; when we depend upon education, we get what education can do; when we depend upon man, we get what man can do; but when we depend upon prayer, we get what God can do.” – A.C. Dixon

Prayer Focus: What are you trusting God for in this season? How can you line up your expectations with the Word of God when you pray? Find promises in His Word that answer your need and write them down today.

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Day 16 – Relationships are Two-Way Street

‘Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.’ – Jeremiah 33:3

We have a promise in Scripture that teaches us that when we call out to God, he will answer us. Sometimes, in our fervency of prayer, we forget that relationships are always a two-way street. If you think about it in purely natural terms, you generally don’t gravitate toward friends who dominate the conversation & won’t let you get a word in edgewise.

The same thing applies in our relationship with God. We sometimes forget that our relationship with God was never intended to be a monologue, but rather a constant state of communion & relationship. We ask God to forgive our sin (and we know by Scripture He will), but we don’t pause to let Him communicate His forgiveness back to us. We tell God we’re confused about the direction we’re supposed to take, but then we don’t stop & get His direction.

Much like a natural relationship will be skewed if you fail to make it a two-way street, your relationship with God will be lacking if you don’t pause & let Him speak back to you. Call to Him & He will answer.

Prayer Focus: As you spend time in prayer, pause & let God answer. Take time to not just make requests, but to hear Him.

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Day 15 – First

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. – Matthew 6:33

What you seek first will organize the rest of your life. When you seek relief from some certain pain, then that pain organizes the rest of the rest of your life. When you seek after money, money organizes the rest of your life. If you’re seeking after success, that ambition will organize the rest of your life. What you seek first really matters. It will shape every facet of your life – how you make your decisions, how you spend your money, how you allocate your time, etc.

This time of fasting & prayer has helped us to seek after God in the first of our year. This commitment to seek God first must continue throughout our entire lives. God won’t take second place in our lives, much less third, fourth, or fifth.

As we draw into the last week of our fast, let’s continue to not make this fast purely a food thing. Let’s keep first things first & make this a heart thing. We prioritize letting God have the first & best of our lives.

Prayer Focus: Are there any areas in your life that you have given the first place in your life? Take time to let God help you to restore Him to first place in your life.

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Week Three of Your Fast

Week three typically feels like a breakthrough week! By now your body should be detoxified & your metabolism somewhat well adjusted, so week three will almost feel like coasting.

Typically, at this point you will be experiencing less hunger pangs & headaches. Your body will begin to put more energy into the restorative process & you’ll likely find you’re sleeping better too.

As the natural concerns begin to subside some in week three, it will free your heart & mind to focus more on God and have week three be the strongest part of your fast spiritually speaking.

Keep with it!

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Day 14 – Bold Prayer

“Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” – Hebrews 4:16

Oftentimes as believers, we have a very timid approach to our prayer.  Maybe that’s because it sounds humble. Or, maybe it’s because we believe God to be angry. Even though this timidity seems spiritual or holy, the instruction in Scripture is to come boldly before God’s throne. This attitude of timidity is a stark contrast to Scripture teaching us that, upon Christ’s death on the cross, the veil in the temple separated, removing the barrier between God & man.

As believers, our communion with God has been restored, and as such, we are able to boldy & confidently approach God. You don’t need to be timid or shy when you begin to pray & seek God. God not only knows your requests before you ask, but He desires the relationship with you where you bring those requests to Him confidently in prayer.

As we continue this time of prayer & fasting, pray confidently & boldly, knowing that God is for you & desires that relationship with you.

Prayer Focus:  Are there specific requests or breakthroughs you need in your life? Take time to boldly bring those requests before God.

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