Oct 18

Our Church’s Day of Prayer and Fasting

copyrighted Photo – purchased from istock

Today, Wednesday, October 18th is Seven Oak’s day of prayer and fasting.  We have done this several times over my 14 years with this congregation.  It was first started when we were involved in a new building project.back in 2005.  We did it every year for a number of years.  Then we stopped it for several years and decided to do it again this fall.

Why we are praying and fasting. 

Our congregation is going through a difficult, but opportunistic season.  We have had so many of our church family dealing with cancer.  We have had some deaths of our number.  Several of our families are currently undergoing chemo treatments and fighing cancer.  We are in the process of hiring a new youth minister.  Plus our education program needs a resurgence.  You add these concerns in with the status of our nation and the need to spread the gospel, and we felt compelled to have another day of prayer and fasting.  But we also have many reasons to be thankful.  We recently completed a $90,000 upgrade to our outside facilities which included a large pavilion and bus garage which was paid for completely.

How we pray and fast as a church. 

Our goal is to have 12 uninterrupted hours of prayer.  We make a sign-up sheet from 6 am – 6 p.m.  We put blocks for folks to sign-up for a 15 minute time slot.  We make sure every slot is filled and many have two or more names.  We make a comprehensive prayer guide for people to use as a tool in their prayer time.  This helps everyone to focus on some of the same ideas throughout the day.  I talk about the upcoming day in sermons leading up to the event.  This past Sunday, I explained the purpose and biblical guidelines for fasting.  Regarding fasting, we remind people that fasting is a personal choice each one makes.  It is not done to be seen of men or to draw attention to oneself (Mat. 6).  We encourage people to do the typical fast of going without food for the 12 hour period.  But we also say that each person can choose how they fast.  If they do not or cannot go without food we ask them to give up something throughout the day as a way of helping them focus on God and prayer.  We  break-the-fast with a congregational breakfast at 6:00.  We have the final 15 minute slot of praying together, then we eat a breakfast meal before our Bible study at 7.

Your congregation should consider doing a day of prayer and fasting.  If you have questions or anyway I can help just let me know.

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