ROOTED IN LOVE

In today’s daily encouragement we refer to one of the great prayers of the great Apostle Paul, from Ephesians chapter 3.

He prays for the church out of his pastor’s heart, that they would know the love of God and become lost in the depth and height and width and breadth of that wonderful all-consuming love.

How often do we use this prayer to pray for ourselves? Or for others? There are amazing keys in praying this prayer. The fullness of God can only come as we are filled with His love, with for us, and then through us. There is no fullness outside of love, because God is love.

Be encouraged and blessed today.

Wes

Daily Encouragement for Day 19 of the fasting Season

MOVING INTO SUKKOT

As we move on our journey from Rosh Hashanah through Yom Kippur to Sukkot in Heaven’s calendar for earth, we are come to Israel being reminded to recall the faithfulness of God in bringing them safely through the wilderness, as He led them in the pillar of fire and cloud.

The faithfulness of God is all over our lives. He has led us this far.

The people dwelling in temporary shelters for this Feast, also points us to the fact that as Christians we are in a temporary dwelling place here on earth. Heaven is our true home. Heaven is our eternal and lasting home. We have no lasting house here. We have one in the heavens which is being built for us by Jesus Himself, Who has gone ahead of us.

Tune in to today’s encouragement for day 6 of our fasting period.

AUTUMN FASTING AND PRAYER

Today we begin our Autumn Fasting and Prayer in Golden Valley Church.

It’s not a coincidence that we are beginning our season on the Jewish and Biblical “Day of Atonement” [Yom Kippur].

Yom Kippur in the Old Testament was the day when the High Priest entered into the Holiest Place to make atonement for the whole nation. Today it is still the holiest day of all in the Jewish calendar.

We also believe these days to be highly significant as they are part of Heaven’s calendar for the earth. Although as Christians we believe that Jesus Christ fulfilled the Day of Atonement in the sense that He was both the sacrifice and the High Priest, and that He opened up the heavenly Holy of Holies for us to enter boldly through His blood, it is still highly profitable to make specific and special time to draw near to Him on this day.

Yom Kippur ends 10 days of soul searching, repentance, forgiveness, and cultivating the fear of the Lord. Of course, in one sense we should do this all the time, however, it’s expedient and powerful for us align with heaven’s dates and seasons.

Let’s approach the Throne of Grace – the Mercy Seat – with boldness and confidence, and yet with deep humility, repentance, and awe. I believe God will meet us as we do, in this fast time.

Wes Boxall

FORTY DAYS OF PRAYER

40 DAYS OF PRAYER BEGINS TODAY IN GVC! 
Psa 27:8 ‘When You said, “Seek My face,” My heart said to You, “Your face, LORD, I will seek.”‘

Let’s come to God with our hearts, and above all find fresh breakthroughs in our intimacy with Him. May the sweet oil of His Presence be smeared over you today from beginning to end.

Psa 27:8 MESSAGE ‘When my heart whispered, “Seek God,” my whole being replied, “I’m seeking him!”‘

PRAYING FROM A CULTURE OF HONOUR AND PROPHETIC VISION

God created us with two eyes, not one; two legs, not one. Two eyes provide depth of field and two legs forward movement. Scripture likens the church to the human body on several occasions. The Father has placed crucial picture lessons of life in its design. As God’s people it is important, I believe, to grasp this reality as it applies to how we view and ‘do’ life.

A pastoral eye will often see very differently to a prophetic eye – yet both are vital motivational giftings from God. (It is interesting to recognise that these two are placed at opposite ends of gifts spectrum in Rom. 12). Often a pastoral eye will have a focus on individual care, pain, and needs, and “grace” will be its standard. Whereas a prophetic eye may have its focus on wider issues; for example how the word of God is playing out in nations and cities. For these, “truth” will be their standard. A “two-eyed” approach will bring both together. Jesus uses “both His eyes” – grace AND truth came through Jesus Christ (Jn.1:17).

Things become dangerous when there is all truth and no grace, or all grace and no truth. Both take us off track. God will never abandon either.

I think it’s important that as we particularly mention issues which have political ramifications, in this church, that we still hold to this “two eyed perspective”. For example, prophetically it is vital we have a healthy biblical understanding of God’s commitment to and backing of Israel as His people. Yes, they are for the most part in spiritual blindness and need the Saviour, but still remain a unique nation under God’s covenant and purposes, amongst all the other nations. Scripture is clear. God doesn’t change. In GVC we take a strong stance on these truths and seek to fulfil heaven’s call to be watchman who won’t give God rest until Jerusalem is “a praise in the earth”. Or we may feel it important to keep calling for an alignment of the US with its scriptural role, as the Great Eagle which stretches its protective wings around the “woman” (Israel) while she is in a ‘wilderness state’ (Rev. 12:14).

Yet at the same time, a pastoral eye, may be one that wants to flag up the suffering of individuals, maybe Palestinians, (or indeed Syrians) such as the specific friends we have in Bethlehem. Or it may be one that sees fears and concerns amongst poorer sections of the US who wonder how threatened they will become under a change of Administration, and has deep compassion on them.

Whilst individually we may be stronger in “one eye or the other”, the church overall must have a balance of two strong eyes. The one cannot, and must not, despise the other. Truth must be spoken in love and love must be safeguarded by truth.

We are in a period of enormous political upheavals and changes. This week the transitions continue. On a personal level we may like or we may dislike those changes. That is fine. We don’t have to all agree on the political details. We can’t! We have been given different “eyes” (gifts) by God. But either way it is a time for increased prayer. And the kind of prayer that both releases the prophetic purposes of God in the earth, AND the kind of prayer that honours those in need and suffering.

A CULTURE OF HONOUR will bless both the incoming President Trump, and the outgoing President Obama. We are entitled to our preferences. But we are not entitled to judge another man’s heart. That prerogative belongs to God. I’m allowed to assess a person by their “fruit” but not to judge or rubbish them. I NEVER know what I would do in their shoes. There have been times we – I – have judged one or both of these men. It is God Who raises up one and puts down another. He sees the thoughts and intents of their – and our – hearts. Let’s repent of being judges. Let’s break off criticism and accusation (Is. 58:9). Honour will give thanks for the good that has been achieved, for the good intentions and desires, for every reflection, however weak, of love and kindness.

If you tend towards being ‘pastoral’ – mercy-gifted – pray from that place, but also recognise and honour those who see more strongly from a ‘prophetic’ viewpoint. If you tend towards being ‘prophetic’ – and tend to see world events in the light of what God is strategically doing behind the scenes – pray and decree from that place. But also recognise and honour those who are “mercy-driven” and make room for their ‘side of the face’ too.

One last thing. At the beginning I mentioned not only two eyes, but also two legs. All of this works out not only in how we see life and the world around us, but also how we move forward. I remember many years ago Gerald Coates pointing out that “being unbalanced” is a vital part of motion. That is, every time I take a step I am momentarily putting all my weight on one leg, one side, and I am actually “unbalanced”. Then I take a step with the other foot and again I put all my weight on the other side, and again am “unbalanced”. If you take a snapshot at these moments I will appear to putting all my weight on one area. However, these steps are points of movement. I pray both legs in the church will be working well. I pray we will know when to emphasise one thing and when to emphasise what might appear to be opposite. I pray we will walk out our destiny in the nations, and bring ever-increasing glory to the Glorious One, Who has washed us from our sin in His own blood, and Who alone has the authority to open up the pre-written scrolls of world history! Surely, He is coming back soon!

Wes Boxall

PRAYER FOR THE LOST SONS

This week it is the annual European Evangelical Alliance ‘Week of Prayer’ and this year’s theme is “The Return of the Lost Sons.”

prayThe EEA have produced a fantastic prayer guide for use in calling on God for the ‘prodigals’ and for examining our own hearts in their relationship to God the Father.

The prayer guide, based entirely on Jesus’s story about the father and his two sons, challenges our tendency towards control rather than releasing and embracing love. It exhorts the church to become more like the Father in its acceptance of the broken and hurting, and those who feel like they don’t fit in.

Truly, this is the foundation of all that God is wanting to do in the days ahead. May we depart from our readiness to judge, condemn, and control people who are different from ourselves, and may we better reflect the Father, Who loves, Who gives, and Who is far more patient with human weakness than most of His people are.

We encourage you to join in prayer with them, and with us.

The prayer guide is available here.

 

SENTRIES WHO GUARD JERUSALEM

Please guys, pray for Israel and for Benjamin Netanyahu! There’s something very urgent in the Spirit right now. If the church is going to partner with God in HIS purposes, then she MUST stand guard over the nation He has chosen and loved.

Netanyahu’s speech to US Congress yesterday was strategic and historic. Right now the nations are being given choices to make with regard to God’s people Israel which will affect both their long-term and short-term future. Prayer right now is essential.

“On your walls, Jerusalem, I have placed sentries; They must never be silent day or night. They must remind the LORD of his promises And never let him forget them.They must give him no rest until he restores Jerusalem And makes it a city the whole world praises”. Isaiah 62:6,7 GNB