Uniting in prayer for awakening
Over a ten-day period at the end of September, a total of 56 RI area pastors, along with 499 gathered intercessors, met nightly at dusk in open air meetings seeking a new spiritual awakening in the Rhode Island area. As you pray today, our whole country will have (or soon will), entered a new and challenging phase of divisive wrangling. This will underscore once again our desperate need to seek God.
This month, we will unite our own personal prayers with those offered weeks ago, following the same format in earnest fulfillment of 2 Chron. 7:14 – “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.”
The praise of God
As they did then, begin with the praise of the triune God. Thinking of their unique attributes and works, make a list of thoughts and verses related to unique praises due to God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, and then offer these up as your own personal word of praise.
Confession of our sins
Now, as you bring your life to God in humility, you will need to ponder prayerfully this next season of prayer as you confess to God specific areas of failure – yours as well as those of His church. These may be in such specific areas of conduct as:
Recalling God’s promises to forgive
- Impure and unbiblical inner thoughts and attitudes
- Examples of sinful speech and ungodly communication
- Our failures in having right and reconciled relationships
- Areas of rebellion which we knew were forbidden or wrong
- Sinful omission and neglect of our Biblical responsibilities
Be honest about your sin, but don’t wallow in it. Instead, claiming several of your favorite verses about God’s forgiveness, give him grateful praise for cleansing your record.
A plea for God’s cleansing
As you review what He put on your heart to confess, take time to ask for His transformation of these areas of your life, rededicating your life to God (Romans 6:13).
Inviting the reviving work of the Holy Spirit
Such a change is possible through the powerful reviving work of the Holy Spirit. Remind God of His promised ministries by the Spirit, and ask Him to do just what He was given to do, in your life and that of the whole church. For example, ask Him to:
A prayer for the advance of the gospel in RI
- Make sin more real to us because he said, “He will convict the world of sin…”
- Make Jesus more important within us, since Jesus said, “He shall glorify me…”
- Make His fruit more abundant in us, since “The fruit of the Spirit is…”
- Make our witness more spontaneous and winsome to others, because He said, “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you….”
- Make His power to overcome sin more effective for us because He said, “walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.’
Such works of God are the very marks of revival – the kind of sweeping, region-wide awakening of the church and drawing of the lost to God that has, to this date, never occurred in RI. As this happens, His gospel will be advanced. Ask God that….
Seeking God’s blessing on our churches
- More and more people will be drawn by God to become restless, curious, or dissatisfied and begin to seek Him
- The ministries of all of our congregations will become more authentic, relevant, and life-transforming.
- Growing, faithful churches will flourish and multiply in our area with things like more small groups, multi-site worship, or newly planted churches.
- That bold and winsome witness will be given by Christian students on our campuses
Thinking of your own and other specific gospel churches in your area, ask God to bless them with unity, peace, faithfulness, godly leaders, joyful and sacrificial fellowship, and abundant fruit in character and ministry.
Pray for our towns, state and their leaders
This is our Biblical duty and serves God’s purposes, “who desires all men to be saved.”