We pray for businesses!

We pray for businesses!

Lord, we pray for businesses throughout California. We pray that you would raise up business owners that have your heart.  We know that you have sent many into the marketplace to be a light in the business world and we lift them up to you.  

Please bless every business owner with insight and strategy that will be used to be a blessing to the inhabitants in this state. Give fresh ideas and vision that will create jobs for those who need them and a thriving economy for the state of California.

Help each person who would like to become a business owner with the necessary tools and drive to be able to accomplish that goal. We also declare open doors for them in Jesus name.

We pray for business and industry leaders to come to you. Send believers into every office, field and meeting.  Send believers into every business in California to be a witness to you and cause people to come to Christ.

Thank you that you care for everything that affects our lives, you care about our livelihood and you use it all for your glory. Help us to always be on assignment for you and represent you well. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Let the glory of God dwell in our government

Let the glory of God dwell in our government

Lord, we pray for our government. We pray that You would set in each position the people that You want in those offices.  We pray that our government would be infiltrated with believers full of faith and without compromise.  We pray that you would send people into politics who have your heart and who will walk in integrity.  

We thank you for the people who are already in the halls of our government offices representing you and making decisions that reflect the cares and concerns of the constituents.  

We pray for our local leadership in Bakersfield that they would govern effectively and truly care for the people of Bakersfield. We pray for the officials on the statewide level that California would be known as a place that you are glorified and where righteousness rules.

We pray for our government on a national level, we pray that you would raise up the leader that you want in office. We do not lean to our own understanding nor do we rely on what the world says, we look to you.  We know that there have been many decisions made over the last decades that have led us as a nation away from you and we repent. Let righteousness rule in the land Father and we pray that you would be exalted above all else. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Forgiving offenses

Forgiving offenses

Colossians 3:13-15 says, "13 forbearing one another, and forgiving each other, if any man have a complaint against any; even as [a]the Lord forgave you, so also do ye: 14 and above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfectness. 15 And let the peace of Christ [b]rule in your hearts, to the which also ye were called in one body; and be ye thankful."

Offenses come whether you are a believer or not.  It is literally impossible to be alive and human on this earth without offending someone and being offended.  Any true relationship will at some point experience conflict and it is so healthy for us to know how to handle conflict in a biblical fashion. 

Jesus told the disciples to forgive seventy times seven times. He told them to forgive their enemies and pray for those that despitefully used them.  Jesus’ remedy for offense is forgiveness. Hurts come from so many places around us but it is up to us to choose forgiveness on a daily basis. 

The truth of God is that He forgives us, He pursues relationship with us no matter how much we have wronged Him. How much more should we forgive one another? Relationships are not always easy but God has called us to walk alongside one another in this life. We are called to be in relationship with God and one another. It is to God's glory that the world see our love for one another and the world.  Jesus demonstrated this for us and prayerfully, we can be the Christlike example for the world to see. 

The Lord is near!

The Lord is near!

Psalm 145:18 says, "The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth."

The LORD is near to all who call upon Him. There are so many times when the Lord does not seem near. So often we look around us and see the turmoil of the world, the hurt and the confusion of others all around us and it can be easy to wonder where the Lord is. Where is He? Why didnt He intervene? If God is there why doesnt He do something about the madness of the world?

Truly, the Lord is near. He is near to the brokenhearted, and to the light hearted. He is near when things are falling apart and when things are going well. The truth of the Lord is that He is good and He is kind. We call upon Him in truth when we acknowledge who He is. God gravitates to our worship, He comes and his presence becomes even more evident to us as we engage him in His truth.

Lord we thank you that you hear us and see us.  We thank you that you are not blind to what happens in our lives and that you do indeed care.  Thank you for showing us the truth of who you are and allowing us to feel your closeness to us.  You are near to us and you care for us.  Help us to walk in that truth. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Praying with shameless audacity

Praying with shameless audacity

Luke 11:5-8 “Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; 6a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’ 7And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ 8I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacitye he will surely get up and give you as much as you need.”

It is hard for us to imagine going over someone’s house at midnight for any reason much less to get food for your guests.  In most cases, we cannot even imagine calling after a certain hour.  We are concerned with being polite and appropriate.  Even if there was a real need, it would have to be beyond drastic for most of us to truly consider bothering someone late at night.

This is exactly what Jesus is saying that we should do in prayer.  Pray the things that seem like we should pray or ask for.  Not only that but Jesus takes it even further and say to ask and keep asking. God is not bothered by our requests.  He is not ever too busy or sleeping, He wants us to come to Him.  

Our prayers never bother Him, He is our Father and He waits for us to knock at His door ready to answer us. God will honor our shameless audacity, the nerve of us to call upon Him in prayer.  He loves our attention and waits to lavish His love upon us.  

He has already told us to come boldly before the throne of grace. He opens the doors of heaven for us to come in and He accepts us in.

We must persist in prayer. In Isaiah 62, God tells us not to give him any rest until He responds to us.  He invites us into a lifestyle of persistent prayer with the full intention to meet us and grant our petition.

So let us pray without ceasing and see the Kingdom of God established on the earth as it is in heaven.

Always a Father

Always a Father

My favorite way to refer to God is as Father. Jesus was the perfect example of how God our Father loves us and how we should relate back to Him. The God of all creation has adopted us and calls us His own.  What an astounding concept if you really stop to think about it.  I appreciate Him as savior and worship Him as Lord and King.  There are so many names in the Bible that describe who He is and even what He does.  All of His names are great and true. However, as father, He embodies all of these things.  Because of who we are to Him, his children, we can rightfully take on the attributes of our Father God.

My natural father is a great dad, he has always done the best he could for my brother and I and we so appreciate that. My father instilled so many principles that he lives by into us and we have taken them as our own.  When you see us and the values we hold you see our father.  That is what I want to be said about me regarding my heavenly Father.  Jesus said it, “ When you see me, you see the Father”, he said “ The Father and I are one” and He said that “ I only say what I hear my Father say”.  

Let it be said of us as children of God that we look just like our Father, that we love like Him, talk and act like Him.  Let us awake to the reality of who we are as children of God and joint heirs with Jesus Christ.  

Thank you Lord that you are the best Father, that you do not leave us as orphans but you adopt us into your family.  Please give us the grace to always reflect your nature, so that the world see you when they look at us. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

An invitation for expectation

An invitation for expectation

As we praying leading up to Awake California, we pray expecting a move of God in California.  We pray knowing that God has ordained this day, this event.  We pray in expectation of what God is going to do and what He is beginning.

Awake California is not just about August 27th, the day of the event.  Awake California is about believers joining together to fast and pray.  Believers crossing denominational lines and political differences to come together in one mind and on one accord to seek the Lord.

What a blessing to partner with the Lord with what He has already set forth.  A move of God is coming to California and to the United States of America.  There is a rumble, and an undercurrent of revival that is happening.  We get small glimpses of it just as David says, “Taste and see that the Lord is good”. He is stirring first in the hearts of His people.  This movement may seem like a low rumble but it is growing and will become a roar that will change the climate of our environments.

So come to Awake California with great expectancy.  Come with hearts ready to contend in prayer.  Come ready to worship and see God move.  Lastly, come to be sent.  Come ready for the commissioning of the Lord. God is bringing us together for a purpose.  He is bringing us together as a church so that we as individuals that are a part of the “Church” would then go into the world and BE the “Church”.  

We are excited about what God is doing and what He will fulfill the day of the event and we cannot wait to see you there.

That we may hear His whispers

That we may hear His whispers

I Kings 19:11-13 “The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.”

Have you ever heard the whisper of the Lord? The small voice inside of you that says, do this, or reminds you of something right at the time when you needed to recall that information. Have you ever left the house and forgot something and thought, “oh well, I’m not going back.  I won’t need it” and then later actually did need it.  What do we often say in those times?  I know I say, “something told me to just take the time to go back and get it.”  That “something” is more often than not, God.  

Hearing God’s voice is not a mystic experience reserved for only an elite group of Christians. Yes, occasionally it can be a dramatic experience but God speaks to us every single day in so many ways we overlook if we are not clued in.  Most times His voice is so gentle we think it's our own thought.  Many times God speaks in a still small voice, a knowing, an intuition.  

Certainly everything we think is not the voice of God but if we begin to pay attention, and tune into the frequency of Heaven it will not be long before with practice we can discern more and more what is God and what is us.  

God is so gracious to speak to us.  The creator of the universe wants to converse with us.  How mind blowing is that? So often we look for Him in large and grandiose ways, in the fire and in the earthquake and so forth.  God is whispering to our hearts it's up to us to be still and listen. 

 

 

Love is what it takes

Love is what it takes

There are so many reasons for separation in our society.  Politics, religion, race, socioeconomic status, and so much more. All these things divide us and cause rifts among people. At the core of every person, we are truly all the same.  We were created by God to be in communion with Him and one another.  All people of every nation, tongue and creed have the same basic wants and needs.  We all want love, we want to know and be known, we want to protect our families’, homes and the things we hold dear.  From Bogata, Columbia to Tallinn, Estonia, we may interpret and exemplify our ideals in different ways which is often dictated by cultural norms but even still at the core, we are the same.

Somehow, however, this basic connection on a human level are not enough to unify us. They aren't enough to prevent wars or the evils we see on a daily basis. Everyone from their own paradigm is justified for their decisions regarding people they consider different from them.

Jesus came and showed us how to deal with all of these things.  Jesus brought groups of people together who would never ordinarily be together and made them brothers and sisters.  God desires this for the world but specifically for His church.

Psalm 133:1 reads, “. . . Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity.” and in John 13:35 Jesus tells his disciples, “ By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another”  Jesus solves all of our differences with one word, love.  Jesus told His disciples that loving God and loving one another is the fulfillment of the law, that if you do these things that you don't even have to worry about “the law”, that by default we would already fulfill it just through loving.

Let us as believers lead the world in love.  Let us be an example of a love that unifies in a world that tries so desperately to divide.  Let us seek to know one another and grow in grace in areas of our differences. Let us reflect the love of Jesus who left the comfort of Heaven and came to earth to love us.  Love is not always convenient or comfortable but love never fails. 

As we pray for California, may our prayers come from a heart of love for God and people.  He desires for His church to be one in spirit and to dwell together in unity.

When you fast...

When you fast...

Matthew 6:16-18 reads, 16 When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 17 But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

When Jesus was saying this, he was instructing the disciples regarding prayer in fasting.  In the verses just before these we find what we refer to as, “The Lord’s Prayer”.  Jesus was teaching his disciples some basic tenets and practices that we would be following.  

When Jesus talks about fasting he says, “When you pray…”. He did not say if you fast but when.  The assumption is always that as Christians, we will fast.  Prayer and fasting go hand in hand.  The amount of time spent fasting and the frequency may vary from person to person but the basic principle remains.  Fasting is a discipline practiced by Christians. Fasting is an opportunity to willingly deny oneself something in the physical and use that sacrifice to spend time focused on the Lord in a way that is much more intentional.  

If you have never fasted before, the idea of giving up food for any period of time can be daunting.  However, fasting simply says to the Lord that you are willing to be uncomfortable and take steps to focus on Him.  If you are interested in fasting, pray, ask the Lord what to do and He will help you. Fasting should be a part of every Christian’s life.  Take this opportunity to pray and fast for yourself, your family, your state and your country.  God will honor your sacrifice and help you to continue to grow in Him. He will do this when you fast.

Lord, please give us the grace to deny ourselves through fasting.  We willingly turn our focus toward you and pray that you would invade our lives.  In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

Influencing our society

Influencing our society

Awake California is a call to prayer and fasting, a call for the people of God in California to pray for the seven spheres of influence in our society: government, education, media, entertainment, family, church, and business.

These are the areas that affect a society. Thus, these are the things we feel led to pray for.  We as believers are called to influence our world wherever we find ourselves, whether it be on the job, in our neighborhoods, in our families, in PTA meetings, or at the park.  We are meant to carry to light of Christ and shine in the darkness of this world. 

2 Corinthians 5:17-20 reads, “17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ,the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.”

It is the duty of every Christian to reconcile mankind to the Father.  This work was not left only to pastors and people who “work for the church” but to each of us, no matter our line of work or station in life.  In each sphere of influence, believers are planted in order to make a difference.

Can you imagine what our government would be like if every believer took their God-given assignment seriously and revolutionized Capitol Hill? What would businesses be like if business owners were not driven by profit only but were Holy Spirit driven people, bringing the good news of the kingdom through their brand? What about schools from preschool to phD level? How different our educational institutions would look if every teacher, student, administrator and so forth that professed the name of Christ would truly realize the mission they are on in those halls.  The same for each sphere.

Our world, country, state will be transformed when the body of believers in each sphere of influence truly begins to have an impact.  The light shines brightly in the darkness and we are called to be salt and light.  Creation is waiting for the manifestation of the sons of God.  Lord please give us the grace and boldness to revolutionize whatever sphere we hold influence. In Jesus’ name. Amen!

Awake O Sleeper

Awake O Sleeper

"Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you." Ephesians 5:14 (ESV)

There are many places in scripture where God gives a directive to His people. Sometimes these directives are a simple one word and sometimes there are layers.  In this season God is calling His body, the church to Awake.  It would seem like this would be such an easy thing for us to do, just wake up.  What could be so difficult about that?  

I would argue that we must first acknowledge that we are sleeping and we must love God more than we love the comfort that sleep brings.  It can be so easy to be lulled to sleep by mundane works, words and service. To become less and less enamored with the person of Jesus and more focused on maintaining an orderly Sunday service. Have you ever been doing something at home, maybe watching tv and suddenly realize that somewhere along the way you had drifted off to sleep? The worst part about it is that most times we do not realize we are sleeping until we are awaken and then we have to take inventory and look around to figure out just how long we were sleeping.  

God is saying wake up! Awake! Awake church, awake (insert your name), awake California. How long have we been on the couch sleeping? Do we even know? Do we know at what point we drifted? The best part is that the promise of God awaits us on the other side of our slumber. God beckons, He is shaking us because He wants to shine on us.  

The word of God is living and active, and the kingdom of God is at hand.  God’s glory is meant to shine in and through us, through our lives.  As we wipe the sleep out of our eyes, the God of the universe shines on us. His promises are sure.  The world needs to see Christ shining and its up to us, the people of God to know Him and make Him known.  How else will the world receive Him but by those He sends? That is us, you and me.  He is calling for us to walk in the light of His glory.  The grace and the love of God compels us to wake up.  There is a world who needs us to display who He is, God is waiting and so is the earth.  Awake, O sleeper.  

Thank you Lord for your grace to come to us, to not allow us to remain in a death sleep.  Thank you for the privilege to partner with you in bringing your glory to the world.  Thank you for caring enough about us to come to us and continually offer the opportunity for Christ to shine on us.  We say yes Lord, we wake up.  Wedo not know exactly where we dosed off but we return to you and want to be the people you have created us to be in the earth.  We obey your command and we pray on behalf of California and declare that California is waking up and that Christ will shine on and through California.  In Jesus’ name. Amen. 

Coming soon...

Over the next few months, we'll be releasing posts that contain testimonies, tools and inspiration about prayer and the seven spheres of influence. Check back soon!