Tates Creek Christian Church

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Archive for the category “40 Days of Prayer”

40 Days of Prayer – Day Forty

He is Faithful
“They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”
Lamentations 3:23 (NIV)

God has given Tates Creek Christian Church a vision for the future. As we have explored 40 days of prayer in pursuit of this dream, we have found Him to be a faithful promise keeper. Today’s devotional is dedicated to praising the Lord for this aspect of His character.

Praise Him using this wonderful old hymn:
“Great Is Thy Faithfulness”
(Text by Thomas 0. Chisholm. Music by William M. Runyan.)

Great is Thy faithfulness, 0 God my Father,
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not;
As Thou has been Thou forever wilt be.

Summer and winter, and spring-time and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above,
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thy own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!

Great is Thy faithfulness! Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided;
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

40 Days of Prayer – Day Thirty-Nine

Why Pray?
“ … The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.”
James 5:16 (NIV)

Can prayer really make a difference? Can my prayers actually change things? Is it possible for the Will of God to be thwarted because I don’t pray? These are legitimate questions. The answers you give them reflect the very foundation of your relationship with the Lord. On one hand, if God is Sovereign, He’s going to do everything the way He wants, so why pray? On the other hand, if He is waiting on my prayers to execute His Will, then I had better get serious about praying really quickly. How do His Sovereignty and my prayers go together?

God uses prayer to make the impossible, possible and the ordinary, extraordinary. Prayers make our efforts effective and help us to define God’s will more clearly. C. H. Spurgeon said, “Whenever God determines to do a great work, He first sets His people to pray.” Faithful praying releases the Holy Spirit to act and allows us to see God in His full glory.

Someone once said, “God does things when we pray that He does not do when we do not pray.” May today’s devotional be an inspiration for you to seek the Lord in prayer. Look up prayer in your Bible’s concordance. Then read and study those verses it gives you. It will help you become endeared to prayer and to realize just how vital prayer is.

Thank God for hearing all the prayers that have been lifted up on our church’s behalf. Thank Him for answering them. Pray that God’s people at Tates Creek will pray more than ever before and that everything we do as a church will be labored over in prayer.

40 Days of Prayer – Day Thirty-Eight

A Contribution or A Sacrifice?
“Therefore I urge you, brothers, in view of Gods mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what Gods will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will.”
Romans 12:1-2 (NIV)

Did you hear the story of the chicken and the pig who were walking together down the road? They came upon a beggar who was nearly starved to death. He had not eaten in days. The chicken and the pig decided to help him. The chicken said, “I have an idea. Let’s fix him some breakfast-some ham and eggs!” The pig thought about that a moment and then said, “I don’t like that idea very much because it only requires you to make a contribution, but, for me, it is a complete sacrifice!”

As the Apostle Paul writes our Scripture passage, he is making a turning point in his letter to the believers in Rome. He is finally giving an application to the truths that he has been telling about in previous chapters. He is stating how we should respond to the knowledge that God has procured our salvation and saved us from the wages of sin through Jesus Christ. He’s telling us to lay it all on the altar for God; surrender completely. Don’t simply make a contribution like the chicken, but sacrifice all like the pig.

Pray that Tates Creek is a body of believers willing to totally surrender to God.

40 Days of Prayer – Day Thirty-Seven

Watch Out For The Dream Stealers
“ … so I sent messengers to them with this reply: ‘I am carrying on a great project and cannot go down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and go down to you?’”
Nehemiah 6:3 (NIV)

Dr. Haller Nutt of Natchez, Mississippi, had a dream. He wanted to build one of the greatest plantation houses on all of the South. Being a doctor and cotton farmer gave him the wealth needed to accomplish this dream home. He made his sketches and searched the nation for the best architect to make his dream a reality. He found Samuel Sloan in Philadelphia to design it. It was going to be an octagon-shaped mansion with eight rooms on each of the six floors. All of that was going to be grouped around a middle piece, a six story rotunda that would be capped with a 16-sided Byzantine onion-shaped dome. It was going to be beautiful with nothing else like it in all the South. Dr. Nutt went all over the world to purchase the very best furnishings for this masterpiece.

As soon as construction had begun, tragedy struck. The Civil War erupted. All the workers left to fight. Dr. Haller Nutt lost everything during the course of the war.

During that time, he moved his family into the basement of this grand mansion so that they might be safe and have shelter. Dr. Nutt died in 1865 before the war was over. The family continued to live in the basement. In fact, they lived there for over a century, 111 years! Finally, some relatives donated it to the local historical society. To this day, it stands as a monument to an unfinished dream.

In Chapter 6 of Nehemiah, enemies tried to stop him from completing the dream that God had laid on his heart-that of rebuilding Jerusalem’s walls. But Nehemiah stayed focused. He completed his God-given dream in record time to the praise of His glory. He is a role model for us today.

Pray that God will enable us to complete the dream that He has given us in such a way as to bring Him glory and expand His kingdom. Pray that He will thwart any enemies who try to steal our dream and prevent it from happening. Ask the Lord how you can take ownership of this vision using the time, talents and treasures that He has
given you.

40 Days of Prayer – Day Thirty-Six

God’s Great Relocation Project
“Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, ‘We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it’.”
Numbers 13:30 (NIV)

God is in the moving business. He is always in the process of moving His people. Although we are often content where we are, God loves us enough not to leave us there. Sometimes we can get a little stubborn about changes that He has in mind for us.

A good illustration is found in the children of Israel as they were moving from Egypt to the Promised Land. God sent miracle after miracle to get them out. But then, they did not want to go on in and possess what He intended for them. In fact, they said in Numbers 14:3, “ … Wouldn’t it be better for us to go back to Egypt?” It seems God could take His people out of Egypt, but His people couldn’t leave Egypt behind.

The old song says, “I have decided to follow Jesus-No turning back, no turning back.” Paul says in Philippians 1:6, “Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” God has begun a spiritual project for His people of Tates Creek Christian Church. May we take heed of the lesson we learn from the children of Israel going to the Promised Land. May we be wise enough to realize that God began this great project, and He will continue this work until completion.

Pray that God will continue to lead the way and that our faith will remain strong as we continue with this vision He has given our church. Thank the Lord for loving you enough not to leave you where you are. Also thank Him for the privilege of being part of this church body of believers during this exciting time in our history.

40 Days of Prayer – Day Thirty-Five

Can Jesus Do A Mighty Work Here?
‘’He could not do any miracles there, except lay His hands on a few sick people and heal them.”
Mark 6:5 (NIV)

Here we have a sad picture. Jesus came to church, but could do no mighty work because of their lack of faith. It was not a good first year of ministry for Jesus as far as His reputation among the hometown people of Nazareth was concerned. He experienced a tremendous amount of rejection. Nazareth was where the Scriptures say, “And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.” (Luke 2:52) It started out well enough when He took the pulpit on a Sabbath and read from the prophet Isaiah, the 61st chapter. This event (recorded in Luke 4:16-30) tells how they “were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips.” (verse 22) But when He told them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” (verse 21), they became enraged. In fact, they ran Him completely out of town to a cliff where they wanted to kill Him by casting Him off the edge. “But He walked right through the crowd and went on His way.” (verse 30) Talk about rejection! Most preachers would have dusted their feet off and pronounced judgment, never to return. Jesus, however, is not like most preachers, thank God. He still had a burning desire to do a mighty work among them.

Jesus still has a burning desire to do a mighty work through His church and people today. Are you willing to live by faith and have a prayer relationship with Him? For He is ready, willing and able to perform powerful works through us. Our faith will either turn the switch on or off. Jesus will either do a mighty work here or He will go elsewhere to do His mighty work.

Pray that He will do a mighty work through Tates Creek Christian Church because we are of strong faith. Ask God to show you if there is a roadblock of unbelief in your life.

40 Days of Prayer – Day Thirty-Four

We Have Never Done It This Way Before!
‘’He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, ‘We have never seen anything like this!”
Mark 2:12 (NIV)

Ancient sailors recorded many times that in the midst of a coming storm the top of their ship’s mast would be circled with a mysterious circle of light. Many times, their hair would begin to stand straight out from their heads as this light appeared. They called it St. Elmo’s Fire. Any experienced sailor knew it was then time to take cover because the air was so electrically charged that a lightning strike was imminent.

The air must have been so charged in Capernaum at the time this Scripture passage took place. There was a crowd, and this crowd was curious about the ministry of Jesus. Scribes surely were scowling as they watched this new Rabbi closely, hoping that they could catch Him in an error. The room was charged with excitement. Everyone knew that something dramatic was about to take place. It was not St. Elmo’s Fire; it was the King of King’s fire. For when He is present, something miraculous is going to happen.

Sure enough, excitement mounted as four men began to tear up the roof in order to let a friend down in the presence of Jesus so that he could be healed. The Bible says they literally “took off the roof.” When our group of believers gather, it ought to be a “roof-raising experience.” And we, too, should be able to say, “We’ve never seen anything like this before!”

According to this passage, three things are needed to have a “roof-raising” experience with Jesus:
• We must have a Savior who can save.
• We must have a preacher who can preach.
• We must have a flock who has faith.

Pray that Tates Creek Christian Church will be filled with people of faith like these four roof removers, for they did everything possible to bring their friend to Jesus. Ask the Lord to make you like one of these four.

40 Days of Prayer – Day Thirty-Three

From Defeat to Victory
“I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses.”
Joshua 1:3 (NIV)

Abraham Lincoln is widely recognized as one of the greatest presidents in the history of our country. He stood tall and strong in a very critical and decisive time in our history. We certainly would regard him as a successful man. But this man also experienced many failures throughout his life.

When Abraham Lincoln went off to the Black Hawk War, he was a captain. Through no fault of his own, he returned a private. That brought an end to his military career. His little country village shop “winked out” as he used to say. So he failed as a businessman.

As a lawyer to Springfield, Illinois, he was too impractical, too unpolished, and too temperamental to be successful.

Turning to politics, he was defeated in his campaign for the legislature. He was defeated in his first attempt to be nominated for Congress and in his application to be Commissioner of the General Land Office. He was defeated in the Senatorial election of 1854 and in his aspirations for the Vice-Presidency in 1856.

Finally, he was elected President of the United States and fulfilled his destiny and the destiny of a nation. Although maybe not as dramatic, Lincoln’s experience is the experience of many of God’s people. The enemy of our soul comes to us after repeated defeats and whispers in our ears, “You’re a failure!” He tells us we will never win, we are trapped forever where we are, and will never fulfill our God-given destiny.

The first chapter of Joshua tells the story of God’s people who escaped the cycle of defeat and moved into the new day of victory.

Pray Galatians 6:9, “Let us not become weary doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Ask the Lord to encourage you in your walk with Him. In your prayer time, claim victory over evil for our church and for yourself.

40 Days of Prayer – Day Thirty-Two

The Corporate Anointing
‘’How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron’s beard, down upon the collar of his robes. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the Lord bestows His blessing, even life forevermore.”
Psalm 133 (NIV)

This Psalm was written on the occasion of David’s coronation as King over all of Israel. And what a struggle it was between the times he was anointed king by Samuel until the day of his coronation when he ruled over a united twelve tribes. It was David who united these warring tribes. David understood that harmony could only be achieved when they practiced the unity of their faith. These days of unity for Israel under David and later his son Solomon were without question the most glorious days of their history. Never has Israel possessed all of the land that God gave her except in these days. Even in our current time, Israel is but a shadow of what she was, despite her being in a united state. In fact, Israel will know no greater glory until Jesus rules in regal splendor from His throne in Jerusalem.

There is a message in these verses for the church. For as the people of God united under one king in the Old Testament, so the people of God must unite today under the King of Kings. As they experience great glory in this unification in the Old, so we will experience a greater glory in the New. As they experienced a tremendous victory over their enemies because of unification, so we will enjoy freedom from the enemy’s control in the New.

Unity is not uniformity. You can tie two cats’ tails together and have unity, but not peace! Seek ways to be harmonious.

Pray that Tates Creek believers will experience and demonstrate true unity of purpose. Pray that we will be one so that the world will be won. Ask God how you can help our church be unified.

40 Days of Prayer – Day Thirty-One

Power For The Future
“Moses answered the people, ‘Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still’.”
Exodus 14:13a, 14 (NIV)

God’s power does not operate until we move beyond the realm of our possibilities. As long as we can do it in our own strength, there is no need for God to display His power. We must move beyond our abilities if a watching world will ever see the power of God. This feat is seen clearly in our text as the recently freed Hebrew slaves found themselves surrounded by impossibilities. Before them was a sea that could not be crossed. Beside them was a barren wasteland. Behind them was an enemy that desired to capture them and take them back to where they had been. In this difficult situation they had three options:
1. They could go back.
2. They could stand still.
3. They could go forward.

For the children of God, there is only one real option: Go forward! As we move forward under God’s direction and by His power, we must be careful. Around us are many roads that can only lead to defeat and death. Doctrinal deviation, isolation, cowardly compromise, and division are to be avoided.

Before us, there is a future. There is a land that flows with milk and honey. This future is as bright and powerful as the promises of God that we find in scripture.

Pray that Tates Creek Christian Church will not be afraid to move forward with God. Ask God to give you a promise out of His word to claim for our church. Pray about an area of your life that needs to move forward.

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