40 days of prayer DEVOTIONALS

Day 1, February 19

Jim Gerlach


5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.  John 15:5-7

 

I remember growing up we had a grapevine that ran along the side of our A-frame house. There was one vine that nourished about 30 feet of branches that grew bushels of plump, green grapes. As a kid, each year I watched in amazement at what all those branches could produce from that one vine.

 

It is astounding what God can produce in our lives when we are grafted – organically connected – to Jesus. If we abide and remain in Jesus and if Jesus words remain in us, we will see answers to prayer that none of us can imagine. That is the promise of God’s Word.

 

And that is the wonderful possibility of 40 Days of Prayer. For the next forty days, from now until Easter, we are going to abide in Christ, keep His words in our heart, and pray for breakthroughs according to His will. I hope you will join me this Sunday as I teach week two of the message series. Plan to be in Bible Fellowship either before or after worship each week. We’ll also have these daily devotionals available through email or printed and placed in the Welcome Center. At the beginning of the devotional booklet you can find the 40 scripture memory verses we’ll put in our hearts during our weeks together. Finally, I hope you’ll go by our HomeView Center for some resources about ways your family can pray together.

 

Let’s get started!

 

  • What do you think? What does this passage mean to you?  How does it apply to your life?
  • What will you do? How will you put this verse into practice?
  • How will you pray? Take a minute to write a prayer of response to God.

 

 

 

 

Day 2, February 20

David Wooten


I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.  You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.  John 15:15-16 NIV

 

There is something quite different between a master and a friend. I think the majority of us would prefer to have a friend. A master does not feel obligated to tell a servant all the details of why the servant must do what he does. But a friendship involves sharing intimate details.

 

Jesus calls those who trust in Him friends. He has revealed certain things about Himself and the Father to us so that we might go and bear fruit for Him. Today Jesus reveals these things to us through the Bible, His Holy Word. The Holy Spirit works in our hearts as we read. Spend time reading what God has written to you. These were given to you from a friend. Then spend time praying, and see what happens in your prayer life.

 

  • What do you think? What does this passage mean to you?  How does it apply to your life?
  •  What will you do? How will you put this verse into practice?
  •  How will you pray? Take a minute to write a prayer of response to God.

 

 

 

 

Day 3, February 21

Roy Soto


6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7

When the Creator is your Father, your Lord, your Counselor and your Comforter you do not have to let yourself be dominated by fear, or insecurity. It is written: "Do not worry about anything ...” instead of spending time, energy and worrying too much, let's invest it in what the Scripture advises us to do: “instead, pray about everything."

Examples of prayers that God answered…

  • Moses cries out to God, and the sea is divided.
  • Joshua prays, and Achkan is discovered.
  • Ana prays, and Samuel is born.
  • Asa prays, and wins a victory.
  • Daniel prays, and the seventy weeks are revealed.
  • Mordecai orders Esther to fast and pray, and Haman dies on the gallows that he himself had sent for Mordecai.
  • Nehemiah prays, and the king's heart softens in a minute.
  • Elijah prays, and the rain descends to the earth.
  • Elisha prays, and the Jordan is divided.
  • Elisha prays, and a child is resurrected.
  • The church prays ardently, and Peter is set free by an angel.
  • Paul and Silas pray and sing, and the doors of the prison are opened to them and the chains of all the prisoners fall.

There are thousands of examples that show the success of the prayer. And the result of this is:Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”

 

  • What do you think? What does this passage mean to you?  How does it apply to your life?
  • What will you do? How will you put this verse into practice?
  • How will you pray? Take a minute to write a prayer of response to God.

 

 

 

Day 4, February 22

Ron Kurtz


Keep Asking!   

In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.  John 16:23-24

 

During your growing up years do you remember hearing the following statements from your parents at various times? For example, “If you keeping asking me…”, “why do you keep asking me about…”, and “Don’t ask me again!” Of course we have used those same statements with our kids and grandkids especially standing in the check-out line at the grocery store because there is an abundance of candy and snacks. 

 

Well, since those statements are so ingrained in us we may feel that if we ask and keep asking God that His response will one day be, “Don’t ask me again!” But the Good News of the Gospel is all about His grace, mercy and lovingkindness. John 16:23-24 is not about “hounding” God till He gives in but is about our intimate relationship with our Heavenly Father. As we keep asking, the Father reveals His will through our asking and the great blessing is not only what we receive but that we receive the fullness of His joy. 

 

Psalm 37:4 says,Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.”

 

  • What do you think? What does this passage mean to you?  How does it apply to your life?
  • What will you do? How will you put this verse into practice?
  • How will you pray? Take a minute to write a prayer of response to God and listen because He knows your heart.

 

 

 

Day 5, February 23

Jacob Stephenson


Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.   Psalm 37:4

 

It can often be frustrating when we ask God for things and seem to get no response. It can lead to doubt and we wonder if God actually cares or hears our prayers. But this verse clearly has a cause and effect. When we find our delight in the Lord alone, then God blesses us with our desires. 

 

Just as a parent won't give a child everything they ask for, God doesn't give His children everything we ask for. Many times the desires of our heart come from a selfish place. Depending on the condition of the heart, our desires could be honoring ourselves instead of God. However, when we delight ourselves in the Lord and His goodness, our desires begin to shift to the proper place. Pray today that God would work on your heart to find delight in Him. Pray that He would remind you of His mercy and love. Ask God to shift your desires and passions toward Him and away from the self.

 

  • What do you think? What does this passage mean to you?  How does it apply to your life?
  • What will you do? How will you put this verse into practice?
  • How will you pray? Take a minute to write a prayer of response to God.

 

 

 

Day 6, February 24

Susan Wiese


Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also, and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.  John 14:12

 

The promise in this verse is not made to the apostles alone, but to all who believe.  This is a promise we will do Jesus' work. It's not promise we will do greater works, but Jesus' works. It's a promise to all believers. There is no exclusion here.

 

This promise is not just for pastors, missionaries, evangelists, or highly spiritual people. We think this verse means we will perform His miracles, but He is saying that I will work in you, helping you lead people to faith in Christ.

 

We are so united to Jesus we will carry on His works that will bear witness about Jesus. We will point people to Jesus, through Jesus, through the Father.

 

We are the aroma of Christ, the light of the world, pointing people to Jesus.

  • What do you think? What does this passage mean to you?  How does it apply to your life?
  • What will you do? How will you put this verse into practice?
  • How will you pray? Take a minute to write a prayer of response to God.

 

 

 

Day 7, February 25

Maureen Evans


And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.  John 14:13-14

 

One of the greatest privileges believers get to participate in is prayer. The fact that God Almighty hears our petitions, concerns, cries, and yearnings is amazing. It is also something that would not have been possible had Christ not come and willingly sacrificed Himself on the cross. His victory over the grave is one we get to share in everyday of our lives once we accept Him as Savior.

 

In John 14 Christ is giving His disciples a glimpse of the future. Not only does He tell them a little about heaven, He explains what will happen after the cross, at His departure and the Holy Spirit’s arrival. Christ now becomes our advocate before the Father. He paves the way for communication to God. So when we pray, we pray to Christ.

 

The purpose of prayer is not to give God your laundry list of fleshly desires. The purpose of prayer is to glorify God. When we pray, we pray with a heart that desires what God desires, for our lives, as well as for the world.

 

What does your communication look like today?

 

  • What do you think? What does this passage mean to you?  How does it apply to your life?
  • What will you do? How will you put this verse into practice?
  • How will you pray? Take a minute to write a prayer of response to God.

 

 

 

Day 8, February 26

Jim Gerlach


38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.   Romans 8:38-39

 

There are so many situations and forces at work that separate us from God. But the greatest one is within us. The Bible teaches that we’ve all sinned and our sin separates us from God. Isaiah 59:2 says; “Your sins are the roadblock between you and your God.” (NLT) They build a wall—a impassable barrier—between us and a holy God. There is no way around it and there is not way through it. Sin promises freedom but in the end it always restrains, excludes and separates.

 

But God’s love busts through every barrier including our sin. Christ’s death and resurrection has destroyed the wall of separation between us and God (Eph. 2:14). So now nothing can separate us from God’s love. When we pray we can come boldly before the throne of God knowing that nothing stands in the way of our direct connection to Him – no power, no person and nothing in our past.  

 

  • What do you think? What does this passage mean to you?  How does it apply to your life?
  • What will you do? How will you put this verse into practice?
  • How will you pray? Take a minute to write a prayer of response to God.