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    21 Days' Prayer and Fasting - GROW

    Tomorrow we begin a period of 21 days when we ask all those who regard All Nations Church as home to join in praying and fasting together, in some way.  Most will stick to a discipline of "Daniel fast" - what it means exactly will be up to households and individuals to choose but the normal summary is "no meats or sweets."

    Apart from being healthy after a season of feasting, over Christmas, this is a time to grow in maturity in our faith.  

    How do we grow in faith?  By taking a bit more time to pray.  By shutting down some of the "noise" of appetites and distractions so there is more time to pray and more focus in those times.  By reading more of the Bible.  By reading a chapter of the Bible each day, together as a household or group of friends.  By sharing our reflections and thoughts about what we have read.  By praying together as a household or group of friends.

    All these things are ways of exercising our spiritual muscles.  Sometimes exercises (or "spiritual disciplines") feel uncomfortable.  It can be hard to keep focus.  But that is why we use words like "exercise" and "discipline" - without pushing to the limit and maybe a little further than before we do not strengthen those muscles!

    Our theme for the year is GROW - going deeper - reaching further.  We want to grow in maturity as disciples and in faith, so that we can reach more people in more places with the influence of the kingdom of God.

    So our theme for these 21 days is to GROW in our knowledge of God - because it is only as we know Him better that we can really develop as disciples.

    Each day we have a chapter of the Bible that reveals something of His nature and character - who He is and what He is like.  As we read let's adopt a simple format or approach:
    1. Pray and read - preferably together with others in the household or with friends.
    2. Pray and share - there will be a daily blog post here to help focus on the themes in the passages but it really helps to share what God is highlighting to each of us as we read.
    3. Pray and act - there is always something we can do in response to reading the scriptures and hearing God's voice.  In fact, if we do not put it into practise we are worse off than if we had never heard (see Matthew 7:24-27)!

    Let's go deeper - together - so we can reach further - together!

    Chris Horton, 05/01/2019