Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 31

Lord, show us where we are childish and immature, that we might desire to grow to enjoy You more!

2 Timothy 2:22 ESV
"So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart."

Day 31 - Prayer for EACF to Mature
There is an ethos in our culture that celebrates immaturity - don't grow up, just play, because life is all about having fun. But maybe maturity and fun are not enemies. The more mature you are, the less you fret over trivialities. The more mature you are, the easier it becomes to say no to things that are distractions from things that are really important. The more mature you are, the more deeply you can drink of the beauty of what God blesses us with because we appreciate those blessings and the costs that make them possible. The more mature we are, the more of our sin we admit and the more we embrace Christ's grace. We confess to God and to one another and we learn to live by grace.

What would EACF look like if we all keep maturing? Righteousness. Faith. Love. Peace. Let's pray against the plague of immaturity and let's ask God to help us to grow up into Christ-likeness and godliness.

Let's keep praying!

- Pastor David

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 30

Lord, show us where we have grown cold, the areas of our lives where we need revival.

Revelation 2:2-5 ESV
‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false. I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name's sake, and you have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.'

Day 30 - Prayer for the Church in America
I've been thinking about this passage from Revelation, the words to the church in Ephesus, and how they might apply to Christians in the United States. Ephesus was a beloved church of Paul and Timothy, a blessed place and a blessing to many others. But while they remained strong in their ability to identify false teaching, to deal with false teaches, and to endure in ungodly times, their hearts had grown cold.

Whether we are thinking about the church in the USA at large, or just thinking about EACF and your own devotional life, let's pray for that fire to burn again, to grow stronger. Doing "the works you did at first" may simply mean praying and living by God's Word. Let's repent of our apathy. Let's repent of our me-ism and get back to Christocentric faith. Let's pray for revival!

Let's keep praying!

- Pastor David

Monday, January 29, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 29

Lord, help us to expand our vision for your Kingdom work, and to let our faith in Jesus grow bigger.

2 Thessalonians 3:1-3 ESV
"Finally, brothers, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored, as happened among you, and that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men. For not all have faith. But the Lord is faithful. He will establish you and guard you against the evil one."

Day 29 - Prayer for Persecuted Christians
Yesterday we had the privilege of cleaning up the fellowship hall after lunch at church. It is a privilege to have a safe, comfortable place and a large group of people where and with whom we can gather peacefully and worship God together without worries of security or interruption.

Today we pray for persecuted Christians around the world. Open Doors USA has some information to help us understand the need. Explore their website for even just 2-5 minutes and then pray whatever God brings you to pray.

Let's keep praying! There is a battle going on in this world. Let's support our brothers and sisters!

- Pastor David

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 28

Lord, help us to expand our vision for your Kingdom work, and to let our faith in Jesus grow bigger.

Ephesians 6:18-20 ESV
"...praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak."

Day 28 - Prayer for EACF Missionaries
Today during service we will be praying for one of our mission partners. We have another family in Asia that we support. We also support Shalom and Felise Alachaimy, as Shalom studies counseling to support field workers with Wycliffe Bible Translators.

We must also prayerfully support others in or connected to our ministry who are serving in various other fields, including Clement Lin (InterVarsity at Emory) and siblings of other members.

Too often we limit our prayers to our own personal concerns, but we need to be interceding for others, especially for those who are laboring for the Gospel and need strengthening, protection, health, healing, resources, and spiritual aid in opening doors and hearts. We get to partner and participate in God's work all over the world...from our own homes...on our knees.

Let's keep praying!

- Pastor David

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 27

Lord, help us to expand our vision for your Kingdom work, and to let our faith in Jesus grow bigger.

Romans 15:24 ESV
"I hope to see you in passing as I go to Spain, and to be helped on my journey there by you, once I have enjoyed your company for a while."

Day 27 - Prayer for Europe
The apostle Paul longed to journey through Europe sharing the Gospel. The church in Europe eventually flourished and experienced some of the strongest movements in church history. (Ever hear of the Reformation?) But now the church there is struggling. One of my seminary friends just moved to Scotland as a missionary! One of the countries that has a rich heritage of faith now has one of the lowest percentages of Christians.

We ought to pray for Europe, that God would bring revival. And pray for God to fill grand church buildings once again with praise for Him.

- Pastor David

Friday, January 26, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 26

Lord, help us to expand our vision for your Kingdom work, and to let our faith in Jesus grow bigger.

Acts 2:8-11 ESV
"'And how is it that we hear, each of us in his own native language? Parthians and Medes and Elamites and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabians—we hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God.'"

Day 26 - Prayer for Africa
The Open Doors World Watch List (this link) lists the countries where being a Christian is most dangerous. Four of the top seven are in Africa: Somalia, Sudan, Eritrea, and Libya. In Acts 2 the Holy Spirit came down at Pentecost and enabled the apostles to speak the Gospel of Jesus to people of all different languages. It represented a reversal of the Tower of Babel and foreshadowed the bringing in of all nations into the church.

Despite the turmoil going on in many parts of the continent, God is at work. Take a moment and pray for nations around Africa and pray for God to strengthen and protect our brothers and sisters in the churches there.

And pray for God to strengthen your own heart and mind as you seek His perspective on all our troubles.

- Pastor David

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 25

Lord, help us to expand our vision for your Kingdom work, and to let our faith in Jesus grow bigger.

Ephesians 6:12 ESV
"For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places."

Day 25 - Prayer for the Middle East
If you follow this link, it takes you to the Open Doors USA World Watch List, showing the 50 countries where it is most dangerous to follow Jesus Christ. The second column shows the source of persecution. The map view shows the concentration of opposition.

Paul, in his letter to his beloved brothers and sisters in Ephesus, did not ignore the physical persecution faced by himself and others, but he did point to the deeper roots of this battle. As you pray for the Middle East today, pray for the Gospel to break through the blindness and misdirected zeal of those who do not know Jesus. Many lives are at stake.

Praying for those on the other side of the world puts into better perspective the battles we face at home. May God bless us all through praying for the Middle East today.

- Pastor David

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 24

Lord, help us to expand our vision for your Kingdom work, and to let our hearts grow bigger.

Romans 10:14-15 ESV
"How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, 'How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!'"

Day 24 - Prayer for the Rest of Asia
We have friends who are praying to shine as lights in other parts of Asia, and some of them face severe challenges in endeavoring to do so. Here are some countries you can pray for today, for God's Kingdom work to break through for the salvation of many: North Korea, Philippines, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, Laos, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Mongolia, Russia, Kyrgyzstan, and more. Have you ever prayed for people in these countries before? Well, now's your chance!

Let's ask God to help us remember daily that we are engaged in a greater work than just our little lives - God is inviting us to participate in His Kingdom work, and prayer is the way to start. Pray for yourself and EACF's part in His work.

- Pastor David

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 23

Lord, help us to expand our vision for your Kingdom work, and to let our hearts grow bigger.

Isaiah 19:23-35 ESV
"In that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria, and Assyria will come into Egypt, and Egypt into Assyria, and the Egyptians will worship with the Assyrians. In that day Israel will be the third with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing in the midst of the earth, whom the LORD of hosts has blessed, saying, 'Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel my inheritance.'"

Day 23 - Prayer for East Asia
The text from Isaiah 19 amazes me: Egypt and Assyria, two of Israel's most hated enemies, are called to receive the blessings of God. His grace knows no bounds and His hand reaches far! I think of Asian history between China and Taiwan, and including Korea and Japan, and I think of all the tension and bad blood and enmity despite the sharing of history and the similarities. Ultimately, the problem of mankind is sin, and the only adequate solution is Jesus. Pray for the growth of the church in East Asia, and for true Gospel teaching, and for a breakthrough in areas where the love of God is needed.

Let's ask God to help us remember daily that we are engaged in a greater work than just our little lives - God is inviting us to participate in His Kingdom work, and prayer is a great way to start. Pray for yourself and EACF's part in His work.

- Pastor David

Monday, January 22, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 22

Lord, help us, in the church and in our land.

1 Timothy 2:1-2 ESV
"First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way."

Day 22 - Prayer for the USA
The weekend's news included talk of a government shutdown and a President's indiscretions. This is the best version of human government we have in this world, built upon ideals of justice, equality, and freedom, but it is still corrupted by selfishness, pride, and fleshly pursuits. Pray for God's mercy upon our nation, our political and community leaders, and our citizenry. Pray for the President by name, that he will know God in Spirit and in truth. Pray for God's work through us, His church, in this land (we are His primary work force in the world that would bring justice, mercy, and love, not the government). And thank God for the freedom to do these things and for those who fought for this and who labor to keep allowing us to live quiet and peaceful lives, for His glory.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 21

We're halfway to 40 days! Keep praying!

Micah 6:8 ESV
"He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the LORD require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?"

Day 21 - Prayer for Atlanta
Today at church the community prayer is for race relations in Atlanta. There is so much more to pray for Atlanta. Amazon may be coming (HQ2!), but Atlanta, as a convention hub, is also known for human trafficking and drug trafficking. Atlanta has a ton of golf courses but very few homeless shelters. Atlanta has mansions OTP and ITP, and pockets of poverty scattered all throughout. So pick and angle of need (immigrants, education, poverty, etc.) and ask God what we're supposed to do about it. Pray for yourself and your engagement and for our church.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 20

Let's ask God to show us how to engage our communities!

1 Corinthians 7:17a ESV
"Only let each person lead the life that the Lord has assigned to him, and to which God has called him."

Day 20 - Prayer for Your Personal Mission
We prayed this week for our church's mission and vision, and for our community. Now, how do you see your place in all these things? God's given you unique gifts/talents, and He's led you to this place and time in your life. How are you called to use your gifts? Whom are you to serve? How can you be a blessing at church and to those around you? But most importantly, how is God calling you to know and enjoy Him? Pray for God to show you how He wants to build His Kingdom in and through your life. Ask God to help you to deal honestly with Him, and to die to self, pick up your cross, and follow.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Friday, January 19, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 19

Let's cover our community with prayer; it's so important that we pray for ourselves and for others!

2 Timothy 4:19 ESV
"Greet Prisca and Aquila, and the household of Onesiphorus."

Day 19- Prayer for Old Friends
Today we're going to gives thanks for old friends whom God used to bless us, or whom we need to ask God to bless. I love the way Paul sends greetings to friends at the end of his letters. At the end of 2 Timothy, he's sending his regards to Prisca (Priscilla) and Aquila, whom he met in Acts 18 in Corinth, and with whom he traveled to Ephesus and ministered. It's important to remember those who were part of our lives, even if you've lost touch. Pray for old friends, to give thanks and to ask God's blessings upon them. And through it all, give thanks to God for His faithfulness.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 18

Let's cover our community with prayer, especially this week outwardly toward the larger community.

1 John 2:10-11 ESV
"Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling. But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes."

Day 16- Prayer for Our Families
Today we're going to pray for our sphere of influence of the network of relationships that God gave us upon birth - our families. For some this includes your parents and siblings, for others this includes spouse, children, in-laws. In any case, though the words above from 1 John are usually applied to our faith families (do you love people in your church?), they ought also to be applied to our blood families. If you've had a difficult family life, pray for God's grace upon your family relationships. God gave these people to you and vice versa and He may have more in store for you. Pray especially for these relationships to have a spiritual dimension - too often we neglect to pray for and with our blood family members or to even ask how they're doing spiritually. So pray for God's love and presence to be felt in your relationships.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 17

Let's cover our community with prayer, especially this week outwardly toward the larger community.

Matthew 22:37-40 ESV
"And he said to him, 'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.'"

Day 16- Prayer for Our Homes/Neighborhoods
Today we're going to pray for our sphere of influence where we live. Whether in an apartment or home, with roommates, family, or alone, let's pray for our influence upon those around us. We are salt and light wherever God has placed us. Do your neighbors experience the love and light of God through you? Ask God for a heart for sharing Christ's love with your neighbors, and then interceded for your neighbors, praying for them by name (or description, if you don't yet know their names) and asking God to bless them. Ask God to show them His love, and ask God to give you opportunities to show His love to them.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 16

Let's cover our community with prayer, especially this week outwardly toward the larger community.

1 Peter 2:12 ESV
"Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation."

Day 16- Prayer for Our Workplace/School
Today we're going to pray for our sphere of influence where we spend a lot of our time, at work or school or among peers. We are "in the world" though "not of the world" and as we spend time with people, they will witness Christ's work on us. I had a co-worker in a university office one time ask me why I never lost my temper. People notice stuff about you. Do you have a positive, Christ-honoring presence in your workplace or school? Pray because this is part of how God uses us to make disciples, by being salt and light in the world. Pray for 2-3 people near you this week, even asking them how you can pray for them. Pray for them for a few weeks. Ask God to show them His love. You are being salt and light!

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Monday, January 15, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 15

Let's cover our community with prayer, inwardly with EACF and outwardly toward the larger community.

Luke 19:41 ESV
"And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it"

Day 15 - Prayer for EACF's Mission and Vision
Today we're going to start praying for our spheres of influence, starting with a general prayer over our larger community. Jesus wept twice in the Gospels; once because of Lazarus's death and the people mourning him, and once because of Jerusalem's separation from God. Have you ever thought about the lostness of our entire community? Most surveys show that maybe 20-40% of our Atlanta suburban community may actually be saved. That means out of 100 people around you, 60-80 of them do not know Jesus as their Savior. You see the signs of it. Pray to have God's heart for our community, and pray for EACF to have a heart that grieves over the lostness of our community. Pray that we would see things as Jesus sees them, with a heavy heart.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 14

Let's cover our community with prayer. I want to keep these posts short so more time can be spent praying.

Matthew 28:18-20 ESV
"And Jesus came and said to them, 'All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.'"

Day 14 - Prayer for EACF's Mission and Vision
Every church's mission statement should sound somewhat similar: every Christian is called to receive Christ's gift of life and to share Christ's gift of life through making disciples. If you're coming to church to just get blessings, then you're missing the point. It's not about just receiving life and love but it's also about sharing. To start this week of prayer, then, let's pray to let the mission of each of our lives and our corporate life together to be about honoring God, serving the Lord, and glorifying Christ through Kingdom building disciple-making. You may need to confess your idols, your selfishness, your self-directedness, or your disobedience. So, take time to pray for all of us to be about God's mission.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 13

Let's cover our community with prayer. I want to keep these posts short so more time can be spent praying.

2 Timothy 1:5-7 ESV
"I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you as well."

Day 13 - Prayer for Our Community: ACCC
Today we will pray for our partner church, ACCC. Some of our members have parents in the Chinese language congregation. All of us have benefited from their faithfulness, as our ministry of EACF is housed in the house that they built by God's grace. And it is a testament to God's goodness that the ACCC congregation demonstrated faith and stewardship that blesses us still. So pray for Pastor Steve Huang, for the leaders and staff, for the members and visitors, for their outreach in the community, including to Chinese restaurant workers. Pray for their growth in spiritual maturity. And praise God for their faithfulness, too.

Starting tomorrow we will be praying through next week for the mission and vision of EACF.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Friday, January 12, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 12

Let's cover our community with prayer.

Proverbs 31:30 ESV
"Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised."

Day 12 - Prayer for Our Community: Women
We prayed for the men in our group yesterday and today we lift up our sisters in Christ. In an era where we celebrate the accomplishments of women on one hand, we also grieve at the continued mistreatment of women near and far. We pray for God's protection and for the breaking of sin's hold on our world. We pray for the women of EACF, for a security that comes from the dual status as a co-image bearer of God and as a unique creation within humanity. We pray for a life-giving awareness of the love of God through Jesus Christ within each of our sisters, and a faith-strengthening assurance that comes from fearing and knowing the LORD.

As it is with men, society's definition of womanhood is different from God's. Let's lift one another up to cherish each other as God has created us in our uniqueness and togetherness.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 11

Let's cover our community with prayer.

Titus 2:2, 6 ESV
"Older men are to be sober-minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness. ...Likewise, urge the younger men to be self-controlled."

Day 11 - Prayer for Our Community: Men
I do not think there is a number that delineates which are men and which are boys - most people will say it's all about maturity. Let's pray for the men of EACF to be spiritually, emotionally, relationally mature men. The qualities listed above are a great place to start praying for the men in our group. Imagine if these traits described each male member of our group, how strong would our group of men be? What a blessing that would be to the women and children in our group. Pray for our men to mature. If they are single, to be self-controlled and not prodigals. If they are married, pray for us to be loving and caring for their wives as Christ loves the church. If fathers pray that we would be self-controlled and God-directed in discipling our children in grace.

We need to be praying for the men in our congregation. We need spiritually mature men of all ages in our community. Amen?

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 10

Let's cover our community with prayer.

Proverbs 8:10-11 ESV
"Take my instruction instead of silver,
and knowledge rather than choice gold,
 for wisdom is better than jewels,
and all that you may desire cannot compare with her."

Day 10 - Prayer for Our Community: College/Graduate Students
It's been said that we should never stop learning; indeed, if we are not growing then we are dying. Let us all be students of God's ways and God's Word. But today we will pray especially for our college and graduate students. Institutions of higher learning are sometimes arenas for much folly and straying from the Lord. Let's pray for those who have come out of our youth ministry or others that we know, locally or away, undergrad or graduate or beyond, who are battling to develop their minds with a heart of faith. Pray for those who are teaching or doing research and involved in stewarding younger minds with the many opportunities before them.

Also pray for our member Clement Lin, InterVarsity staff worker at Emory University, and his ministry to the students there.

Pray for yourself, too, to be a student who is humble and hungry for more of what God has for us to know about Him. Amen?

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 9

Let's cover our community with prayer (especially local college football fans). Take 5, 10, or 30 minutes or more to pray, starting with this topic and then on to whatever else God brings to your mind. Pray for yourself, your family, people at church, and your community. Pray continually!

John 6:8–9 ESV
"One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, said to him, 'There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are they for so many?'"

Day 9 - Prayer for Our Community: Youth
Yesterday we prayed for the children in our faith family; today we will pray for the youth. The verses above from John's record of Jesus' miraculous feeding of the five thousand reveals it was a boy who had the five loaves and two fish that Jesus turned into a feast. That the boy was there showed the openness of the Gospel and of Jesus to youth. That the boy was used by Jesus and included in John's Gospel shows how we ought to value the presence of youth and who they are.

And practically speaking, the youth need our prayers. They are bombarded by so many temptations, targeted by marketers (e.g., cigarette companies using Joe Camel to sell tobacco products to whom?), preyed upon by traffickers and dealers, pressured by peers, and neglected by parents. The statistics say that if kids don't come to Christ before they turn 18YO, they likelihood of their salvation drops. I don't put anyone out of God's reach, but let's pray for our youth in our church, our families, and our communities today.

Also, say a special prayer today for Job, our Youth Director, and the volunteers in our youth ministry at church.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Monday, January 8, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 8

Let's kickstart our week with prayer! Take 5, 10, or 30 minutes or more to pray, starting with this topic and then on to whatever else God brings to your mind. Pray for yourself, your family, people at church, and your community. Pray continually!

Matthew 19:13–15 ESV
"Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked the people, but Jesus said, 'Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.' And he laid his hands on them and went away."

Day 8 - Prayer for Our Community: Children
Last week we prayed for the character of our community. This week we will pray each day for a different group within our church community. Today, please pray for the children. Yesterday's Family Worship was a reminder of how precious children were and are to Jesus. The church in Acts, like the Old Testament covenant community, had children in their gatherings. The Bible constantly reminds us to celebrate and steward our children well. Pray for our younger brothers and sisters in Christ to grow in faith and in the security that comes from knowing Jesus and grasping the Gospel. Pray for parents to grow in our capacity and responsibility to nurture our children in faith. Pray for our entire church to value and enjoy the children. Pray special prayers for those with special needs.

Say a special prayer today for Selma, our Children's Director (w/ ACCC), and for Evelyn (staff), as well as for other volunteers who help strengthen our ministry to children.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 7

Sunday is the Lord's Day! It's an entire day to rest from regular activities and reflect on God's goodness and presence in our lives, and to worship Him throughout the day. Take 5, 10, or 30 minutes or more to pray for this topic. Pray continually!

2 Corinthians 3:18 ESV
"And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit."

Day 7 - God's Glory
Today, we will pray for God's glory. What does this mean? Well, it's Sunday, a day for worship. We pray to see and experience God in His glory, majesty, power, and goodness. We honor God for showing us His glory through His plan of salvation of us through Jesus Christ. So we pray to behold the glory of the Lord more and more, for therein we are moved by His goodness to worship. And then we worship with our lives that we might give Him glory through our thoughts, words, deeds, and relationships. So we pray that our lives would be living sacrifices for God's glory.

Are you ready for this? Nothing in this world compares with the glory of the Lord! Hear the invitation (reading Matthew 7 or Acts 9, the sermon passage for today, reinforces this), and respond to God's goodness and love for us.

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 6

Take 5, 10, or 30 minutes or more to pray for this topic. Lift up prayers periodically throughout the day. Include it in a line in your prayer before meals. Pray continually!

Acts 2:42 ESV
"And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers."

Day 6 - Fellowship
Today, we will pray for Biblical, Christ-emulating fellowship for our church family to experience. The verse above talks about how the early church was devoted to four things, and we can figure out some of what being devoted to the Word, worship, and prayer looks like, but what about being devoted to fellowship? Maybe it starts with a heart that is less self-concerned and more other-concerned. After all, Jesus has us covered, so we can think more about loving others than getting love. Praying for a heart that looks to serve others like Christ-served us? Sounds good. And then we build relationships that go deeper, that spur spiritual growth, that breeds accountability in grace, that multiplies love.

Now, what would a church filled with godly fellowship look like? My prayer for you is that you would experience this, that we all would, with our EACF family!

Let's keep praying! I'm praying for you!

- Pastor David

Friday, January 5, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 5

Take 5, 10, or 30 minutes or more to pray for this topic. Lift up prayers periodically throughout the day. Include it in a line in your prayer before meals. Pray continually!

2 Corinthians 12:9 ESV
"But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me."

Day 5 - Growth in Grace
Today, we will pray for growth in grace. We prayed for conviction of sin, and this is something we must continue to pray daily! But with that, in Christ we are also convicted of grace. The conviction of grace goes along with the conviction of sin - it is herein we come to understand the necessity of Christ's sacrifice on the cross and the gravity of our sin. The more we grasp this, the more we grasp our need of grace, and the more we appreciate God's grace. The more we recognize and acknowledge our weaknesses, the more we recognize God's grace. The more we remember our need, the more we worship and give thanks to God. And when we do not take grace for granted, we respond to grace by living in, through, and for Christ.

Now, what would a church filled with God's grace look like? How would a fuller recognition of God's grace affect your day, answer your worries, and keep you focused? How does growing in grace change your identity, your character, and your relationships? Let's pray today to grow in God's great grace for us.

Pray for this for yourself and for everyone in EACF!

I'm praying for you!
- Pastor David

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 4

Revelation 2:2-5 ESV
"I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance.... But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent."

Take 5, 10, or 30 minutes or more to pray for this topic. Lift up prayers periodically throughout the day. Include it in a line in your prayer before meals. Pray continually!

Day 4 - Praying for Conviction of Sin
Today, we will pray for conviction of sin. With what sins do you struggle? Pride? Lust? Selfishness? What about coldness? Laziness? Idolatry? We may have some outward signs of being Christian while being cold in our hearts, harboring bitterness toward people or God, or allowing other things (some of them good) to rival our first love for Jesus. Pray for conviction of sin. Pray for God's help to come back to your first love. Remember as well that love is not just an emotion but also a choice. Pray for both to align and that your heart will be joined to the truth of how much God loves you!

Oh, brothers and sisters, let us pray today to be captured again by God's love for us that we would see everything else in line after loving God.

Pray for this for yourself and for everyone in EACF!

I'm praying for you!
- Pastor David

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 3

Acts 4:31 ESV
"And when they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness."

Take 5, 10, or 30 minutes or more to pray for this topic. Lift up prayers periodically throughout the day. Include it in a line in your prayer before meals. Pray continually!

Day 3 - Praying for the Spirit's Fullness
Today, we will pray to be a Spirit-filled people. Every Christian has the Holy Spirit dwelling inside of him or her as a sign and seal of God's saving work in us and adoption of us in Jesus' name (Ephesians 1). But there are times when the Holy Spirit comes to strengthen us, like He did for Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane.

We are called to live by the Spirit that we can have our minds on the things of the Spirit (Romans 8:5) as opposed to having our minds on things of the flesh. Are you walking in the Spirit of God throughout your day? Do you feel the refreshing presence of the Spirit at your work or when you're driving around in your car? And do you occasionally feel the extra encouragement of the Spirit when you're down, when you're facing temptation, or when you're sharing God's love with others? Is God's Spirit helping you crucify sin and grow in Christ-likeness?

Oh, brothers and sisters, let us pray today to be filled with the Spirit individually and as a church! Let's ask God to give us extra strength during these forty days as we seek God's will for us.

Pray for this for yourself and for everyone in EACF!

I'm praying for you!
- Pastor David

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 2

Acts 2:42 ESV
"And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers."

Each day I will post a prayer topic. Take 5, 10, or 30 minutes or more to pray for this topic. Lift up prayers periodically throughout the day. Include it in a line in your prayer before meals. Pray continually!

Day 2 - People of the Word
Today, we will simply pray to become people of the Word.

If someone asked you to describe your best friend, you would think of things that person had done and words that person had said to help describe your best friend. God's Word reveals who He is by teaching us what He has done and the words He has given to us. To know God we must know His Word. To know God's will and His promises for us, we must know God's Word. To know who we are, we must know God's Word.

Pray to become a person of God's Word. Pray for your friends to be people of His Word. Pray for help reading and memorizing Scripture. Pray that this would become a discipline for you and others.

2 Timothy 3:16–17 ESV
"All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work."

I'm praying for you!
- Pastor David

Monday, January 1, 2018

Forty Days of Prayer Day 1

2 Chronicles 7:14 ESV
"If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land."

Welcome to 2018 and our Forty Days of Prayer to kick off the new year! Each day I will post a prayer topic. Take 5, 10, or 30 minutes or more to pray for this topic. Lift up prayers periodically throughout the day. Include it in a line in your prayer before meals. Pray continually!

Day 1 - Heart for Prayer
Today, we will simply begin by praying for a heart for prayer.

A pastor friend of mine tells people to pray until you're really praying. It may take a few minutes when you start to get your mind cleared to where you're able to focus on your prayer. It's like setting aside distractions to have a focused conversation with a friend or family member. Pray for a heart to have that conversation with God everyday. Pray to have a heart that longs to pray like your life depended upon it. Pray to have a heart that enjoys praying the way you enjoy talking with your best friend or the one who knows you inside-out and who loves you most deeply. Pray to have a heart to have that conversation with the one who sent His one and only Son for you. Pray not to ignore God. Pray for a heart of prayer.

Pray for this heart for yourself and for everyone in EACF!

I'm praying for you!
- Pastor David

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