Monday, March 2, 2009

Lent Prayer Challenge

So, as you may have heard yesterday at ECV, I feel that God is leading our community into a season of prayer during Lent (from now until Easter). Specifically, I shared yesterday three specific challenges to folks in our community for this season:

1) Let's each pray individually about one specific thing that we would really like to see God do in our personal lives (a personal character development growth edge, an answer to a critical discernment question, a practical life need).

2) Let's all pray for ECV, specifically praying into the 8 dreams I mentioned Sunday (Seeing the power of God at work; more and more people following Jesus; a stronger, healthier New Haven; following Jesus more and more deeply; making an international impact; a culture-making ECV community; bridge-building & reconciliation; a church & city full of strong families). I'll send out emails each week about a dream, some goals that we have felt led to set, and some prayer requests. 6 weeks, 8 dreams; fuzzy math will have to prevail.

3) Let's each pray for around six people in our lives in New Haven whom we would like to come to know who God is, what He has for their lives, etc. Let's pray for God to bless them, for God's best for them. Let's pray with expectation that, as we pray, God really will show Himself in their lives and be ready to take risks to follow up with them and invite them deeper. Maybe even take the risk to share with them, "Hey, I'm doing this thing for Lent where I'm praying for some folks in my life. Anyway, I'm praying for you; is there anything I could be praying for you for?" Maybe God will do something; then what? Could be exciting...

I'd really encourage you to join us for this prayer challenge whether you've been following Jesus for years or are still trying to figure out who (or whether) God is and what He's all about. Feel free to use this as something of a faith "experiment," to see what God might do. Take a risk and see if God is for real; maybe He is, and that really would be something, wouldn't it?

Anyway, we'll be talking about this on Sundays for the next six weeks, hearing stories of what God is doing as we pray. Homegroups, too, will be checking in on this, providing smaller contexts for sharing our prayer request, praying for one another and all that good stuff. If you haven't yet, check out a homegroup; even just commit to trying it out for these next 6 weeks.

I hope this season of prayer will help us continue to invest more and more deeply in the pattern of invitation and risk in faith that God's been drawing us into over the last couple months. As we've risked, God has shown up; let's keep pressing in.

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