Prayer Bulletin – February 10 – 16

If you have prayer concerns that you wish to have considered, please send them to Rev. Calvin Brown <cbbrown@bell.net>.

Prayer Discipline This Week:
It is sometimes edifying to reflect on different translations of the same text in order to gain nuances that one translator picks up and another misses out on. I suggest that each day this week you meditate on the text from a different translation and perhaps use Strong’s Concordance or a word study from the Greek text on one of the days. James 5:16 teaches us the conditions of prayer that are helpful in making our prayers answered by God. First he says that we need to make confession to clear up any barrier between God and us, and then, as we pray in wholeness, God will hear our prayers offered in earnest. Therefore confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed.

NIV – The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.
KJV – The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
NASB – The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.
THE MESSAGE – The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with.
JERUSALEM BIBLE – The heartfelt prayer of a good man works very powerfully.
NEW LIVING TRANSLATION – The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.
NRSV – The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective.
GREEK – πολυ ισχυει δεησις δικαιου ενεργουμενη

Prayer Focus This Week:
Sometimes, the prayer requests will be the same as last week’s. This is not vain repetition but the earnest outpouring of our plea to raise the ongoing issue before God. It is a persevering in prayer that is a reminder that we believe God is faithful and we are waiting on his timing with expectant and focused hearts.

  • Continue to pray that God will provide a bookkeeper for PSALT.
  • Pray for strength not to grow weary and faint but to rise up on eagle’s wings of faith.
  • Pray for an efficient and encouraging AGM gathering for PSALT on Thursday Feb.22.
  • Pray for the two Spring Conferences to be held at Vaughan Community Church on April 20 – 21. See https://psalt.info/thriving-in-babylon/ for details and to register. Pray God will move in the hearts of all those who should attend and prevent stumbling blocks to their attendance.
  • Pray that PSALTY people will be earnest and wise in sharing their concern for the renewal of our congregations and the denomination.

Resources – Acts 20:17-38 (NIV)
From Miletus, Paul sent to Ephesus for the elders of the church. When they arrived, he said to them: “You know how I lived the whole time I was with you, from the first day I came into the province of Asia. I served the Lord with great humility and with tears and in the midst of severe testing by the plots of my Jewish opponents. You know that I have not hesitated to preach anything that would be helpful to you but have taught you publicly and from house to house. I have declared to both Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus. And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace. Now I know that none of you among whom I have gone about preaching the kingdom will ever see me again. Therefore, I declare to you today that I am innocent of the blood of any of you. For I have not hesitated to proclaim to you the whole will of God. Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood. I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock. Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them. So be on your guard! Remember that for three years I never stopped warning each of you night and day with tears. Now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified. I have not coveted anyone’s silver or gold or clothing. You yourselves know that these hands of mine have supplied my own needs and the needs of my companions. In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ” When Paul had finished speaking, he knelt down with all of them and prayed. They all wept as they embraced him and kissed him. What grieved them most was his statement that they would never see his face again. Then they accompanied him to the ship.

Prayer Bulletin – February 4 – 10

While prayer may be a place of challenge and pain (confession and repentance), it is even more a place of peace and contentment (adoration and intercession). Prayer is being in the presence of God. If our greatest sense of God is that He is for us, then we have confidence that our prayer is not useless but in fact is the embrace of God assuring us that what we share in prayer will produce good spiritual fruit.

Prayer Discipline This Week:
Each day begin your prayer time with a Breath Prayer. It is prayed slowly and repeatedly until the truth of God’s word moves from your head to your heart. “My soul finds rest in God alone.”

Prayer Focus This Week:

  • Pray for solidarity and joy for all who are involved with the PSALT initiative.
  • Pray that we will be generous, understanding, and caring for those caught up in confused sexuality.
  • Continue to pray that God will provide a bookkeeper for PSALT.
  • Pray for an efficient and encouraging AGM gathering for PSALT on March 1.
  • Pray for the PSALT Courts of the Church Team to be clear-minded and energized in reaching out with Gospel truth to the Assembly and other courts of the church.
  • Pray for those planning the two Spring Conferences to be held at Vaughan Community Church on April 20 and 21.

Resources – Psalm 20:1-9
May the Lord answer you when you are in distress; may the name of the God of Jacob protect you. May he send you help from the sanctuary and grant you support from Zion. May he remember all your sacrifices and accept your burnt offerings. May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed. May we shout for joy over your victory and lift up our banners in the name of our God. May the Lord grant all your requests. Now this I know: The Lord gives victory to his anointed. He answers him from his heavenly sanctuary with the victorious power of his right hand. Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. They are brought to their knees and fall, but we rise up and stand firm. Lord, give victory to the king! Answer us when we call! (NIV)

Prayer Bulletin – January 28 – February 3

Prayer Discipline This Week:
There are many ways to pray but the most important is “to humble yourself under the mighty hand of God so that he may lift you up.” as the prophet tells us. This week I suggest you attempt to pray using the ancient prayer practice of lectio divina. As Richard Foster explains it – it is a way of allowing the mind to “descend” into the heart so that both heart and mind might be drawn into the love and goodness of God. Steps are as follows:

  1. Read a Scripture passage with a listening ear.
  2. Reflect on what we are “hearing”.
  3. Pray in response to this hearing.
  4. Contemplate on what we will carry forward into our lives.

These are the steps: listening, reflecting, praying, and obeying.
I have suggested a Scripture “resource” below you may choose to use but you may choose another passage if you like.

Prayer Focus This Week:

  • Pray for good health to be restored to those in leadership and their families as well as others the Holy Spirit brings to mind.
  • Pray that we will be generous in reaching out to refugees who are in such dire straits.
  • Continue to pray that God will provide a Bookkeeper for PSALT.
  • Pray for an efficient and encouraging AGM gathering for PSALT. Please note the date of the AGM has been changed to March 1 and not Thursday Feb.22 as previously noted.
  • Pray for the PSALT Communications Team who takes care of our Face book page and other media.
  • Pray for discernment and wisdom for Presbyteries responding to the Assembly Clerks’ suggestion that we remove any reference to “excommunication” from the Book of Forms and church discipline. This is a serious change of biblical caring for the church and needs greater thought and study. Pray that the church will not rush into a thoughtless decision that would leave church leaders without means to deal with serious matters of discipline.
  • Pray for the two Spring Conferences to be held at Vaughan Community Church on April 20 and 21. See https://www.renewal-fellowship.ca/1553 for details and to register. Pray that God will move in the hearts of all those who should attend and prevent stumbling blocks to their attendance.

Resources – The Parable of the Weeds – Matthew 13:24-30
Jesus told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared. The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?’  ‘An enemy did this,’ he replied. The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’  ‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’ ”

 

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