July 2020 Update

“For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord & please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” (Colossians 2:9-14)

We have not stopped praying for you:                                                           

As I read through my Bible, I underline in green passages that are prayers or specifically about praying. This week I was reading Colossians and read this very rich prayer that the apostle Paul prayed for the church at Colossae. I think it is an excellent prayer to pray for your local church and the FMCIC. It reveals that Paul understood how crucial prayer was for making disciples and so it says he (and his associates) did not stop praying for them and that we shouldn’t either. And these are the things they were asking God for:

  1. That we would be filled with knowledge of God’s will in wisdom and understanding by the Spirit…growing in the knowledge of God

Knowing God and His will is not just a “religious thing” to do, but it’s the smartest thing in the world to do. Ask God to help our next generation (and the older ones too) to understand and value this kind of knowledge through a first-hand relationship with God; we need to know Him to trust Him.

  1. So that we will live a life worthy of Lord, pleasing to Him and bearing fruit in every good work.

Ask that God would stir us to lean into living according to this revealed wisdom and understanding and not just keep it in our heads.

  1. Being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that we may have great endurance and patience. Pray for the power of the Spirit to enable us to live this way for the long haul and to strengthen those growing weary.
  2. Giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. Ask that God our Father will enable us to understand our redemption inheritance in His kingdom of light and love, so much so, that our hearts our overflowing with joy and thanksgiving continually.

Knowing that Paul and his friends made these kind of big-picture requests of God shows me that we can and should pray for these kinds of things too.

Prayer Points for our July, 2020 National Prayer Meeting:

  1. We are going to drill down into the four things that Paul prayed for the church, and take time to dwell on them one-by-one.
  2. Pastor Pierre’s son, Prudence, is still in a coma in the hospital, but the family is encouraged and there are signs that his recovery is moving in the right direction. Please continue to pray for Prudence and for Pastor Pierre and the family for strength, for peace and for comfort.
  3. For our FMCIC 2 task forces: a) exploring our relationship to the LGBT+ community, b) engaging women in leadership, as they begin to write their reports. Pray that God will give them wisdom and understanding that comes from the Holy Spirit and not humanity, so that we will better know the will of God in these areas of concern in our day.
  4. For Keitha Ogbogu of West Springs FM in Calgary and the newly appointed ‘anti-racism’, or ‘pro-equality’, or ‘we’re all made in the image of God so how do we live fully into that’ task force. (Actually, the Board of Administration did not give the task force a name, they left that to the task force to decide.)
  5. The Amazing Race – Virtual Family Camp, August 16- 21, 2020, hosted by Barrie FM Church, and all the other creative ways churches are seeking to share the gospel in these days of social distancing.
  6. For each local church as they figure out when and how to return to face-to-face services, and to discover any new and fruitful ways God would have us “do church” in the days ahead. For example, how to follow up with the new people viewing our online services, or how we connect relationally with each other in small groups using the internet, etc.
  7. That God would prepare the church for the challenges of living out our Christian lives in a world that is becoming increasingly indifferent and even hostile towards us that is bold, Spirit-empowered, joyful and winsome.