Throughout the Bible prayer and fasting has been associated with seeking after God and his favor. In the Old Testament, the nation of Israel fasted and prayed on many occasions. On one of those occasions, the prophet Ezra proclaimed a time of prayer and fasting for the safe journey of those Israelites returning from Babylonian captivity. The journey back to Jerusalem was a dangerous, filled with threats from all of their enemies.
The Vaughn Forest Church family is also on a journey that has numerous threats from our enemy, Satan. He wants to destroy us, to discourage, and to distract us from God’s blessing and favor, as individuals, as families, and as a church. If Satan is allowed to destroy us then he will also destroy our community and our nation.
God, on the other hand, has great plans for us. God wants to bless us in every area of our lives and to use us to make His name famous. He wants to use us to love our neighbors and to reach the world with a message of God’s love and forgiveness. For us to be all that God wants us to be, we like Ezra and the children of Israel need God’s protection.
As we pray and fast this week, let’s pray for God’s protection in our individual lives. Let’s pray for protection for our spouses, our children, and our extended families. Let’s pray for God’s protection for our church, our families, our leaders, and our pastor search team. Let’s pray also for God’s protection on our community and our nation. Let’s pray with the knowledge and strong assurance that “He who lives within us is stronger than he who is in the world” and is abundantly able to do more than we ask or think. Let’s pray with the confidence that we know he hears our prayers and knows our needs.
We can overcome all that is in the world because of God’s protection provided through His son Jesus. I John 5:4 says “Who is it that overcomes the world except for the one who believes that Jesus is the son of God.”
In His Service,
Norm Bell, Pastor of Local and Global Impact