Have you received clarity and direction from the Holy Spirit on how He would have you participate in the spiritual discipline of fasting during this 21 Days? For some guidance and ideas, read our post on “Why Fast?”
We want to encourage you to grab a journal or a notebook – something to write on as you walk through each prayer guide or devotional. Yes, it will add a few minutes to the time it takes to do the devotion, and it will also deepen your experience and shape your walk with God for years to come. This journal or notebook will be a keepsake to remind you of God’s faithfulness during this challenging season for all of us.
Engage the Word
Over these several days, we are exploring Jesus’ words where He taught His disciples (and us) how to pray, in what has become known as The Lord’s Prayer. Here, Jesus says to His disciples (and to us):
9 Pray then like this:
“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
10 Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread,
12 and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
Connect the Heart
Jesus said pray then like this:
“Your kingdom come…”
In his important book Prayer: The Great Adventure, Dr. David Jeremiah says that “when you pray ‘Your kingdom come,’ you are saying, “God, You are the King. You live in my heart. And I want Your kingdom principles and purposes to be lived out within me, as you reign within me. I know the manifest, visible kingdom isn’t here on this earth yet, but there can be a little touch of the kingdom within me as I walk with You and talk with You and live for You each day.” God has called us to live as if the King were already in residence on this earth, because He does reside in our hearts. (p. 103)
There is also a part of the “kingdom come” that is “not yet.” One day, Jesus will return and establish His Kingdom on earth for a period of a thousand years and as Revelation 21 says, He will make “all things new.” This is why Jesus taught His disciples to pray “O God, may your kingdom come. Let your kingdom come within me, let the King rule in my life. Let the kingdom come around me, let kingdom principles be manifest among God’s people. But most of all, Lord, hasten the day of Your coming, when everything is going to be made right.”
Reflect on the Truth
1. How is your heart – your words, your actions, your desires, your motivations – welcoming God’s kingdom to come in and through you?
2. What are some ways where you can say that you are allowing the King to rule in your life? Are there any areas of your life where you haven’t fully surrendered to the King and are not allowing kingdom principles to reign over your life? If so, confess those to Him now.
3. Turn your heart now to God and ask Him to rule and reign in and through you.
Depend on the Spirit
Ask the Holy Spirit to help you see the deeper longings, desires or motives in your heart that these thoughts are pointing to. (For example: you may write down, “O Father in heaven, I so desire that your kingdom principles would reign in my life. Guide me by your Holy Spirit to better align the priorities of my life with the priorities of your kingdom.”) The Lord can help us discern the path forward – through His word, His Spirit, His people.
For Prayer: As we conclude our devotional time, let each of us pray for the Ascent Church family to be a people who are living in the world, but not of the world – and letting God’s kingdom principles be manifest among God’s people as we impact our families, our neighborhoods, our community and our world.
Read our post “Why Fast?” to learn about the spiritual discipline of fasting and gain a better understanding of why Jesus asked us to fast. We fast not to get something we want from God, but for God to change our wants. We fast because Jesus fasted, He expected we would fast, and we see that the early church fasted.
Read yesterday’s post HERE.
Catch up on all our 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting posts on the blog HERE.