Day 21

Day 21

We are at the end of Awakening, 21 days of prayer and fasting. How are you feeling? Are you feeling closer, more connected to God? Has there been an awakening in your spiritual life?  

Do you feel like obeying God? Let me put it to you this way, “If you don’t feel like obeying God, then something is wrong with your feelings. So much of our Christian teaching focuses on obeying God regardless of how you feel, but the Bible is clear that for the majority of the time we should feel like obeying God. This is where awakening comes in. This is where fasting comes in. When you have an awakening with God, you begin to have a desire to obey Him and walk the path of righteousness. 

We are back where we started on day one with Romans 12:11. I hope as a result of the last 21 days you are fueled and ready. It is so important for your obedience to flow from “want to” and not “have to.” Though we are not led by our feelings, they are important. We are created in the image of God, and God created us with emotions and feelings. God wants your heart, your passion and your love to increase and overflow in obedience. Remember passionate Christianity is the norm, not the exception.

The principles you have practiced in these twenty-one days are very easy to sustain long term. Prayer, fasting, and personal devotion are all quite simple to incorporate into your everyday life. Over these last twenty-one days, you’ve created space for God to fill. The best way to continue in these same practices is to keep that space open indefinitely. Don’t allow it to fill up with other things! Protect that time and space with God and make it your priority each day. You can live your best life now, if you are living your best life spiritually! 

 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 20

Day 20

We all want our prayers answered. The number one reason why our prayers are not answered is, “We are not focused on the glory of God!” Think about the prayers in your life. Do you want to be happy in your marriage, or do you want God to be glorified in your marriage? Do you merely want your kids to be nice and not get in trouble, or do want God to be glorified in their lives? Do you simply want to get out of your financial mess and feel some relief, or do you want God to be glorified in your finances?

Our motivation for prayer should not just be centered on ourselves so we can have what we need. God thrives when He can prove Himself. He wants to be glorified in and through us, and He wants to be glorified in the earth. God will share that glory with no one. He deserves nothing less than all the glory, all the honor, and all the praise. Glorifying God has to be the motive of our prayers, not just our relief. 

Fasting empowers us. God does not expect us to go through the challenges of life without His power. Prayer and fasting brings us to the place where we can power up. As you worship Him, plan to go into the future with His power and be intentional about using all of the resources that He has for you. 

 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 19

Day 19

I have a very important question for you, “Do you know what God’s Word says about your situation?” Effective prayer is based on the Word of God.

Effective prayer is not based on our authority, but on the authority of God’s Word! We need to know the Word well enough to pray Word-based prayers. Prayer is not so much about getting what we want but aligning ourselves with what God wants. Matthew 6:33 clearly tells us what He wants. He wants us to seek Him first! Are you pleading for financial breakthrough? Then you need to be aligned with what God says about resources. Are you tithing? We have a part to play in the effectiveness of our prayers, and it has to do with alignment with God’s Word. 

Can you see how prayer is actually less about getting from God as it is about aligning ourselves with what God already wants to do. Many times, though, we can get so focused on our own comfort or our own preferences that we don’t even take the time to examine ourselves to see what God’s Word has to say about our situation. We have to align our prayers with the Word, and we may also need to align some aspects of our lives with His Word. 

Prayer and fasting is the preparation we go through to create the container that is ready for the new thing God wants to do in and through us. God’s new always changes us by expanding our faith, enlarging our purpose and bringing renewed vision. Pray that the Lord will expand your life to glorify Him, giving you boldness to step out and be used by Him.

 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 18

Day 18

Jesus told his disciples to pray in HIS name. Do you understand what that means? Jesus has given us His name to use! Just imagine if some billionaire gave you his credit cards and authorized you to use his bank account. You could use his name and his resources to get whatever you needed. Wow, that would be a blast! But here is the catch. You knew there had to be a catch right? Everything you did with his money needed to be in line with his tastes and values. To pray in Jesus’ name means to pray in alignment with His values.

God has given us total access to His incredible power and unlimited resources. When we pray in the name of Jesus, it has the same power as if Jesus were praying Himself. The difference between us and Jesus is that Jesus is always in complete alignment with His Father. That is why periodic seasons of fasting are so important. Fasting is the most effective way to really get in alignment with God. So, the first step to praying prayers that accomplish much is praying in alignment with God’s will.  

We can come to God in such outrageous boldness because Jesus was outrageously righteous! When we pray, we can come to God in the authority of Jesus’ name, and we can be confident that we will find grace, mercy and perfectly timed help. Be bold in your prayers today!

Solace ChurchComment
Day 17
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Day 17

Making prayer a priority is important. Make sure you don’t turn it into work. If your motive is to seek God, to enjoy God, to pursue God, then pray away. Don’t let prayer turn into legalism. Legalism is when you think you have to pray each day without fail at the same time, for a certain amount of time, and according to a certain format. And if you don’t do it—God will be unhappy with you. Remember the primary purpose of prayer is relationship building as you draw near to God as you talk and listen to Him. 

Prayer can easily become about our performance rather than about knowing God. When that happens, prayer turns into a legalistic obligation, and the joy goes right out of it. Such a performance mentality actually sets you up for an inconsistent prayer life, because every time you fail to meet your standards, you will fall under condemnation, and instead of looking forward to your next prayer time, it will seem like a joyless burden. Instead of coming to God boldly and confidently, you will begin apologizing for missing your prayer time for a day or two or for cutting it short by a few minutes. It is important to keep our prayer times fresh. It is time to have an awakening in our prayer life. 

Try changing up your prayer routine today. Listen to a worship song. Pray through a Psalm like Psalm 62 or 63. Take a prayer walk.

Solace ChurchComment
Day 16

Day 16

Sometimes I can get easily distracted. How about you? It is so easy to get distracted by all the things going on in our lives. We can get wrapped up in all of the things that we have to do that we constantly find ourselves living in the fast lane of life. I suppose it is okay to be in the fast lane, as long as you are making regular rest stops to get alone with God. Even Jesus had to create space for His Father to fill. 

Both Moses and John the Baptist created space for the Father to fill. They were in the desert when they heard God’s voice. I’m not saying you have to get a machete and hack your way out in the wilderness or travel to some desert somewhere, but whether it’s in your car, your bedroom or whatever, get alone with God so you can hear the voice of your heavenly Father. 

Hearing from God doesn’t need to take a long time, but neither can it be rushed. You don’t have to pray and cry out to God for two hours a day every single day of the week to hear His voice. Reading your Bible doesn’t mean it has to be four chapters a day. We make this more complicated than it has to be. What you do need is a time that is set aside, a time for nothing but you and God, and you need to guard that time. Pick a place that works for you where you can really get along with God and detach from the usual distractions. Keep your time with God fresh and new but also simple and sustainable. Find out what works for you and create space for God.

Solace ChurchComment
Day 15

Day 15

I find it very interesting: When God wanted to fill believers with the Holy Spirit, the most amazing filling of all, He didn’t ask them to think it all through and figure out how that was going to happen. He also didn’t force it upon them. He revealed what was in store for them and asked them to be ready, but then He asked them to create a space where it could happen. 

Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:3-4, 6, 17-18 how we can create space. In these verses He doesn’t say, “if.” He says “when” you do these things. He assumed that, as His children, we would want to create spaces in our lives for Him to fill with His rewards. When you give, pray, or fast, you are creating space for God to do amazing things in your life.

Spiritually speaking, this week can be really powerful as you find yourself in a prayer and fasting zone, and your mind has made the leap to focusing more on God. 

Make a choice to finish strong, and ask God to help you keep your momentum (or even strengthen it) as your year goes on.

 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 14
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Day 14

Prayer and fasting is about creating space for God, clearing a runway in our lives for God to land. When you want something new and exciting to happen in your life, then you have to create some space. An expectant mom goes to great lengths to create the perfect nursery space for her new little one. 

Think about that new thing that you want God to do in your life. Think about that problem that is blocking your path that you need God to remove. As much as God wants to do something amazing in your life, He is a filler, not a forcer. 

Too often we spend so much time and energy trying to figure out and anticipate every scenario. We want God to do this; we want God to do that. But all the while God is saying, “Just create a little space for Me, and I’ll come in and fill it.” By seeking God and by following Him fully, you are creating space for God to move. As you fast and as you pray, you are making room for God to do what only He can do. He is a filler, not a forcer.

Maybe you have tried to participate in this time but have found yourself stumbling along the way. I want to encourage you to keep going. Be encouraged by this: when we draw near to God, He draws near to us. 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 13

Day 13

A great way to begin each day is by focusing on who God is! Today focus on the goodness, the greatness, and glory of God. Focusing daily on these three attributes of God gives us a complete picture or filter of grace. The Lord’s Prayer is a great prayer to help us think about the goodness, the greatness and glory of God. 

When we call God our Father, it reminds us that we are His children. He loves, cares for, and provides for His children. He is a great dad. But that’s not enough, is it? You can know that you are loved and that God is good, but you can still be going through hard times. So we not only need to focus on God’s goodness, but we also need to set our minds on how great God is. Our great God is in heaven. When we think about our God in heaven, it reminds us that he reigns and rules and is in control. He has all the power that we need to make it through tough times. Lastly we need to give God glory. When you “hallow” God’s name (or make it holy), it is a helpful reminder that life is not all about us.

When you get up in the morning, your number one priority should be to get in the right mindset for your day. First things first – simply focus on who God is! Focus on His goodness, greatness, glory, and ask Him to help you see everything else through that filter. Remember, it’s not about what you do., it’s about who God is.  

 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 12

Day 12

Today we are focusing on God’s love. The way we can grow in our love for God and others is by focusing on His love for us. God’s love is endless and it comes freely without any condition; He loves us no matter what we have or haven’t done. When you focus on God’s love, His joy and peace will follow. 

Your feelings will follow what you focus on. That’s why it’s so important to focus on the goodness of God through His Word. When you focus on your faults, you’ll end up feeling condemned. Make sure you don’t fall into the performance trap. If you perform well, then it can lead to pride. On the other hand, if you don’t perform well, the fruit is condemnation. Either way the fruit of having a performance-based relationship is a lose-lose situation. If we try to come to God based on our performance, guess what? It will never be good enough. None of us could ever be that good; only Jesus was able to do that. That’s why we have to focus on God’s love for us. 

Make sure you regularly meditate on verses that help you focus on God’s love. Today be intentional about focusing on God’s love for you and ask Him to give you a fresh revelation of how much He loves you. 

 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 11
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Day 11

Grace is the foundation for a relationship with God. If we get grace wrong, then we pursue God in wrong ways. We don’t pray, fast, or read our Bibles to get God to love us more. It’s not possible for God to love us more than he loves us right now, and His love for us never changes. His love is not based on what we do, but it is based on what Jesus has done! Grace is undeserved favor.  

Some people think that telling people about God’s grace encourages people to sin. I contend that it will do just the opposite. Understanding the fullness of the goodness of God actually causes us to sin less. 

The way we love God more is by focusing on His love for us. We will live more holy on accident by focusing on the goodness of God than we will by focusing on all the “thou shalt's and “thou shalt not's.” I pray for a grace awakening in your life that you will realize how loved and accepted and forgiven you are by God. You can’t earn God’s love and grace; you have to accept it, receive it, believe it, and trust in it.  

Have you been looking at God through the lens of legalism and religion? Pray that the Holy Spirit will help you see God through the eyes of grace and truth given to us in Jesus Christ.

 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 10

Day 10 

It is easy to talk about what you are passionate about, right? We love talking about sports and other hobbies. God created us to be passionate about what we love; therefore, we should always be passionate for Him!

There is one undeniable truth about true fans: they are passionate. Just watch any professional or college football game or any World Cup soccer match. As the cameras pan the crowd, you will see passion. The fans have pompoms. They are wearing team colors. They are screaming. They may even be singing. They are just straight up into it. You know what it’s like in the stadium – loud! The place rocks with passion, because real fans are passionate about their team. 

Whatever you are passionate about, you will also be emotional about. Awakening is about igniting a deeper passion for God in your heart. Put on a worship song! Lift your hands, open your hands, open your mouth. Ask God to ignite passion in you, to help you feel Him and express your feelings.

 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 9

Day 9

When we experience staleness in our relationship with God for whatever reason, surrendering again is the first step to rekindling the fire within! We need to start each day with complete surrender. Surrender is more of an ongoing process rather than just a one-time decision. Full surrender to God means no more going back and forth with one foot in the world and the other foot in God’s kingdom. Following Jesus is all or nothing.

The surrendered life is the best life. It’s really the only way to live as a believer. But to get there, you’ve got to go all out. This means total surrender. No more halfway stuff; you can’t be a part-time Christian. God wants you to be a full time follower of Jesus.

When you fully surrender to God, you are filled with His Spirit and are awakened to His presence in your life. God will energize you and give you a hunger for His Word.

About this time in your prayer and fasting, you may be experiencing some fatigue. Let yourself have extra rest if you need it.  Finally, more than ever, this is the time you have to be vigilant about your spiritual focus. Great days are ahead, and you will be glad you pushed through this day and didn’t give up!

 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 8

Day 8

You can know God and never completely surrender your life to Him. Your sins can be forgiven, and you can be on your way to heaven, but you can still be in control.  
You can add God to your life, but it can still be your life. You can still be in the driver’s seat. 

Prayer and fasting is about getting out of the driver’s seat and getting in the passenger seat. To truly surrender means giving God your whole life and discovering the reality, joy, peace, freedom, feelings and experiences that come with truly knowing God. We often believe this is a one-time decision, but it is a practice we must regularly engage in to keep our spiritual passion. 

God is asking you a question, “Will you let me drive? Will you give me complete control? If you want all of me, then I need all of you.” Today will you allow Jesus to have His way in your life? 

Is there something that you need to surrender to God today? What have you been holding on to that you need to give back to God? During your prayer time today give God the things that you have been holding onto and watch how He moves mountains in your life. 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 7
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I love an ice-cold Coke. Pop the top, and it has lots of fizz! Have you ever drank a canned Coke after the top has been off for a while, and it has gone flat? There is no fizz! Just Gross. We expect the fizz when we open up a carbonated drink, don’t we? We expect the fizz every time!  

Passionate Christianity should be the norm for every believer—not the exception!
We would never settle for a flat Coke that has lost its fizz. Likewise, we should never settle for a stale, mundane, dull, boring relationship with God. Are you vaguely unsettled with the idea that somehow a daily relationship with God…the God of the universe…can end up flat? 

Begin again today with a John 10:10 passionate, expectation of abundance! Don’t settle! Guarding the passion in your heart is the most foundational discipline of your life. Refuse to accept a faith experience that is so far below what God intended for you.

As you complete the first week of your 21 day praying and fasting, make sure you are writing down the things that God is speaking to you. Continue to pray fervently for the main concerns in your life. Trust God to bring an answer as you write your thoughts and inspirations through this time. 

 

Awakening: 21 Days Of Prayer And Fasting Devotional by Stovall Weems

Solace ChurchComment
Day 6
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The hardest decisions to make are usually not between what is good and bad. Usually the most difficult decisions are between what is good, better and best. It is so important to be able to clearly hear the voice of God when facing important decisions. Jesus regularly disconnected from the world to hear the voice of God. This awakening season is all about disconnecting from the world so that we can hear the voice of God. 

All sorts of things will try to crowd God out of your life. Jesus faced pressure from the crowds, and he had to choose between doing good and doing God’s will. The crowds constantly tugged on Jesus to heal them or to do another miracle. What might have happened if Jesus had listened to the voice of the crowds? He would have settled for a very good cause, healing, but missed his primary purpose to preach the kingdom of God to lost humanity. Jesus knew that with so much need everywhere, He had to hear the voice of His Father, or He would have mistakenly chosen what’s good instead of what’s God. That is exactly what will happen in our lives if we’re not tuned in to God and hearing His voice over the voice of the crowd. 

The voice of the crowd cannot answer the question, “Why are you here?” When you hear the voice of God, you begin to understand His purpose for you and what you are all about. It is then that you can prioritize your life around that purpose; this is a freeing place to be, and it uncomplicates your life. Once you begin to realize God’s purpose for your life, you start to understand something foundational about yourself; you’re not here on earth simply to exist but—guess what?—you were sent. Your whole life will change when you understand that you were sent here by God.

I don’t know your specific assignment in regards to your career, relationships, or other matters. I do know that we are all called to be witnesses for Jesus. I want to challenge you to look at the normal activities of your everyday life and see them as opportunities to be a witness for Jesus. During your praying and fasting, look for ways to serve and encourage others at work, at home, in your neighborhood or at church.

 

Awakening: 21 Days Of Prayer And Fasting Devotional by Stovall Weems

Solace ChurchComment
Day 5
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One of the reasons I think prayer and fasting are so powerful when combined is that together they activate a chain reaction where we see God’s kingdom take shape on earth. This sequence is what I call agreement…alignment…assignment. When we come into agreement with God, we are aligned with God’s perfect will on earth as it already is in heaven. When we are aligned with heaven, we find that God can use us in ways we never thought possible; then we begin to walk in our assignment –the purpose that God created us to fulfill. 

God has given you a specific and unique assignment. You are a masterpiece designed by God to make a difference in this world. There is a very specific purpose for which you were created. God is the only One who can truly inform you of that purpose, and in order to fulfill it, you will need His power.

Here’s the deal: when it comes to pursuing our God-given assignment, if you and I are not in tune with God’s voice, we will only hear the voice of the crowd and get weighed down by the pressures of life. Like a radio station we can’t quite hear clearly, all the voices will cause static and make it difficult for us to tune into the Voice we need to hear. 

As you pray and fast, let your time help you focus on God.  Ask God to make His voice known and to speak truth into your purpose.

 

Awakening: 21 Days Of Prayer And Fasting Devotional by Stovall Weems

Solace ChurchComment
Day 4
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Do you think of yourself as a temple? The Bible says that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. We’ve got to get “the gunk” out of God’s temple so we can hear his voice clearly and prepare ourselves for new things He wants to do in and through us. Even if you are going to church, reading your Bible, and worshiping there are times when you need to give your soul a good cleaning to make it fresh again. 

As we live our lives, over time we can get all “gunked up.” While our spirit is eternally made new through Christ, our soul, which is the intersection of our mind, will and emotions, can become weighed down, heavy, negative, and sluggish. 

The constant demand on our mind, the distractions, and the noise can weigh us down and put us in a spiritual fog. Life has a way of stacking on the pressure and pain, which causes our emotions to get out of whack. As we get tired and weighed down, our conscience can become desensitized, not really bothered by things that once convicted us. God’s voice is slowly muffled, and we begin to lose our passion for Him. The fire within dims, and we shift into autopilot, operating from a position of obligation or routine in our relationship with God, instead of one of affection and fervor.

To receive the new things God wants to bring into our lives, we have to periodically hit the reset button.  Along with your prayer and fasting, make sure you slow your pace and remove distractions. Try to add some times of silence and solitude along the way. 

 

Awakening: 21 Days Of Prayer And Fasting Devotional by Stovall Weems

 

Solace ChurchComment
Day 3
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Why do we fast? You can do it for the right reasons or the wrong reasons. I want to make it clear that under the New Covenant, fasting is not to get God to change His mind about something. Fasting is also not something we do to obtain favor or forgiveness. After you receive Jesus Christ as your Savior, your past, present and future sins have already been forgiven! You don’t need to fast to obtain favor or receive mercy, because through Jesus you live in a continual state of God’s mercy. Instead, fasting is a way of celebrating the goodness of God and that because of Jesus, we have already received God’s mercy, forgiveness and favor. 

Under the Old Covenant, the entire mindset was to “do in order to become.” But under the New Covenant, the operating principle is “you already are, therefore act like it” - rejoice and celebrate that Christ has set you free.  

You don’t have to fast for mercy, instead, celebrate the mercy given to you as a free gift through your relationship with Christ. Under the New Covenant you don’t fast to obtain the Lord’s favor because you perpetually live in the favor of the Lord. Do you see the difference?  

Fasting is not about mourning or sadness, but it is about celebrating the goodness of God. Make sure that as you fast you reflect on the goodness, favor and forgiveness of God. 

 

Awakening: 21 Days Of Prayer And Fasting Devotional by Stovall Weems

Solace ChurchComment
Day 2
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It is time to get a new outlook on fasting. When practiced the right way, fasting is something that everyone should enjoy. That’s right…enjoy! Fasting is for every follower of Jesus. Too many people fast with a strict mind-set that focuses on abstaining. The fasting I am talking about is different.

Fasting is one of the most powerful spiritual weapons believers can use. Maybe you’ve never done it before. There is a serious misconception that fasting is for serious, super Christians or only for times of crisis. Some even think fasting is only an Old Testament thing. Nothing could be further from the truth.  

Jesus said in Matthew 6:16, “When you fast.” He did not say if you fast!
There is a closeness to God that experienced through fasting. Disconnecting from the distractions of the world through fasting, and connecting into the power and presence of God through prayer, brings a supernatural freshness and newness to our souls. 

What will you be fasting over the next 20 days? Your fast doesn’t necessarily have to be food. You could fast from social media or anything that would help you be more intentional in your focus on God and His Word. 
 

 

Awakening: 21 Days Of Prayer And Fasting Devotional by Stovall Weems

Solace ChurchComment