FAC Southwest campus logo

Prayer Guide | September 22-October 20

What is Fasting | How Long to Fast | What to Expect | Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Intro

Jeff MarshallIn the story of Moses and the Israelites, God had a plan and He chose Moses to carry it out. God has a plan for FAC and He is calling all of us to carry it out! Moses didn’t know what to do or how to move without God’s help. He prayed to God before he carried out any plans because he didn’t want to make a wrong move. As a faith community, we only want to move the way God wants us to — and He’s moving us to Southwest Calgary. We want to stay in step with God and the only way to do that is to pray first. That’s exactly what we’ve been doing and we hope we’ll all continue to learn together as a community of faith to see prayer as a first response rather than a last resort. When we do, God will lead and guide us as a church.

Understanding the necessity of prayer is important and we want it to become a part of our lives. Prayer needs to become something we look forward to doing. When we discover the beauty of daily conversation with Him, we’ll experience the presence of God that will change and direct our lives forever.

We want to encourage everyone to join us for 4 weeks of prayer for the Southwest Campus of First Alliance Church leading up to its launch on Sunday, October 20, 2019 at Glenmore Christian Academy. The following Bible verses and simple questions will guide us in our quiet times of prayer.

Jeff Marshall, Southwest Campus Pastor


FAC Southwest Prayer and Fasting Guide

4-Week Prayer Guide

Regardless of if or how long you choose to fast, we encourage everyone to join us for 4 weeks prayer leading up to the launch of the FAC Southwest Campus, September 22-October 20, 2019.

 

What is Fasting | How Long to Fast | What to Expect | Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Intro

Week 1: Workers

When God placed the dream of expanding FAC through a multi-campus model, the board and staff joined in prayer to seek God’s direction. God was calling us to expand what we were doing at FAC Deerfoot into other areas of the city … Areas that were under-reached or expanding in numbers.  Southwest Calgary became a clear target from early in this process. It was also clear that God didn’t want this to be a project of a select group but an endeavor with responsibility given to the whole church. We all have a part to play in reaching the lost, hurting, and weary in the southwest of the city and inviting them into the family of God. This will require lots of workers with a variety of gift mixes to accomplish.

When He saw the crowds, He had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few.  Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into His harvest field.” (Matthew 9:36-38 NIV)

  • What is this passage telling me about God?
  • What is this passage telling me about myself?
  • What is God trying to say to me right now?
  • What is God asking me to do as part of His move into southwest Calgary?
  • Pray that God would fill the volunteer needs at the Southwest Campus
  • Prayer for those with a heart to reach out, to join the Southwest Campus team to share the good news of Jesus with our new friends and neighbours.
  • Pray for those who love children to volunteer to love and care for the children of new families who will attend FAC Southwest.

 

 

What is Fasting | How Long to Fast | What to Expect | Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Intro

Week 2: Provision

God never puts a dream on our hearts without promising that He will provide for us too. We’ve seen His hand upon the plans for FAC Southwest. We’re seeing people step up to serve at this campus. This has been exciting but there’s still need for more volunteers in areas like DiscoveryLand, Grade 5&6, and our new Set-Up & Tear-Down Teams. We’ve ordered many pieces of equipment yet there is more to come. We know God will provide  all we need to reach out to build His church in southwest Calgary.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving present your requests to God.“ (Philippians 4:6 NIV)

  • What’s this passage telling me about God?
  • What’s this passage telling me about myself? What is God trying to say to me right now?
  • What can we expect from God as we launch FAC Southwest?
  • Pray that God will provide all we need to launch the Southwest Campus.
  • Pray the enemy would not rob, kill, or destroy the plans God has for FAC Southwest.

 

 

What is Fasting | How Long to Fast | What to Expect | Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Intro

Week 3: Outreach

God is giving us plenty of opportunity to reach out to people and share Jesus with them wherever we live. We know that as we enter the neighbourhoods of southwest Calgary, there are many people who have need and many who don’t know Jesus. God is calling us to target an area of 6 existing communities with almost 68,000 people. This area is already growing  with the addition of  5 new communities in the coming years, doubling the population to over 135,000 people. What a great  opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus in southwest Calgary!

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be My witnesses, telling people about Me everywhere — in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8 NLT)

  • What’s this passage telling me about God?
  • What’s this passage telling me about myself? What is God trying to say to me right now?
  • What does this Scripture tell us about reaching out to southwest Calgary?
  • Pray for the people of southwest Calgary who need God.
  • Pray that God would meet these people and provide for their needs.
  • Pray that God would use us as a church to meet those needs and introduce people to Jesus.

 

 

What is Fasting | How Long to Fast | What to Expect | Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Intro

Week 4: Renewal

We’ve been praying and asking God for renewal at FAC for the last year. We want to continue praying for this as we launch FAC Southwest. Let’s pray that the Holy Spirit would blow through the southwest of Calgary and our church filling everyone with awe and transforming us to be God’s holy people, wholeheartedly devoted to God.

“Don’t copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” (Romans 12:2 NLT)

  • What’s this passage telling me about God?
  • What’s this passage telling me about myself? What is God trying to say to me right now?
  • How does this scripture relate to the Southwest Campus?
  • Pray for the people of southwest Calgary who need God.
  • Pray against the schemes of the enemy to rob, kill, and destroy the Southwest Campus launch team.
  • Pray that God would transform all of us … including the Southwest Campus team … through the power of the Holy Spirit.

 

 

What is Fasting | How Long to Fast | What to Expect | Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Intro

What is Fasting?

Fasting in its simplest definition is understood as “voluntary abstinence from food or drink, especially as a religious duty.” As followers of Jesus, the purpose of all spiritual disciplines, including fasting, is to help us to become more like Jesus. We follow in His footsteps. Fasting helps us – personally and corporately – become aware of how God desires to work in us and through us.

We should never be motivated by the idea that our fasting will move God to do what we want; we cannot manipulate God. The purpose of our fasting is to draw us closer to God and to seek His will for our lives.

“One of the greatest spiritual benefits of fasting is becoming more attentive to God – becoming more aware of our own inadequacies and His adequacy, our own contingencies and His self-sufficiency –  and listening to what He wants us to be and do.” E.L. Towns

In the book of Esther, the Jews were on the verge of destruction because of Haman, one of the king’s advisors. Haman was filled with anger against a Jew named Mordecai because he didn’t bow or worship him. Haman looked for a way to destroy all of Mordecai’s people, the Jews, throughout the whole kingdom of Xerxes.

Mordecai knew he was in trouble so he sought help from Queen Esther, who was his niece. Now, for Queen Esther to approach the king for help without being summoned first was very dangerous – she would literally be risking her life. So Esther called a fast.

“Go, gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my attendants will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish.” (Esther 4:15-16 NIV)

Those 3 days of prayer and fasting changed history forever.

This is her moment. Esther goes to see the king, knowing she is quite possibly walking to her death. However, because Esther approached the king on behalf of her people, they would became a nation not of defeat but of favour and rescue.

When God’s people fast with proper motive – seeking His will – and with a humble and repentant spirit, amazing things happen.

This is our moment. We’re going to pray and fast as a church community. We’re going to seek God’s will for our lives, our church, our communities, our country, and our world.

 

What is Fasting | How Long to Fast | What to Expect | Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Intro

Deciding How Long to Fast

For this FAC Southwest campus prayer focus, decide if and how long you’re able to fast. You may fast for as long as you like; however, use wisdom and pray for guidance. Ask the Holy Spirit to lead and guide you when making this decision.

Beginners are advised to start slowly. Keep yourself hydrated at all times. Drink plenty of water and juices. Remember to replace your time of eating with prayer and reflecting on the Word. We’ve provided 5 days of guided prayer and Scripture for everyone to lean into together as a community, regardless of how long you choose to fast. If you’re unable to fast, still join us in praying!

Important Words of Caution

  • Please consult your family physician before attempting to fast if you have a physical condition that’s affected by your food intake, have any type of chronic illness, and/or are taking any kind of prescription medications. If you’re unsure whether you should participate for any reason, please consult your family physician.
  • Infants and small children should not fast. Older children who can understand fasting can participate by choosing a food they usually have each day and giving that up during the fast. The important thing is to explain that we’re giving up something for the purpose of focusing on God.

 

 

What is Fasting | How Long to Fast | What to Expect | Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Intro

What to Expect

When we fast our body detoxifies, eliminating toxins from our system. This can cause mild discomfort such as headaches and irritability during withdrawal from caffeine and sugars. Naturally, we’ll have hunger pains. It’s important to limit physical activity and exercise moderately; to take time to rest.

We’re following Jesus’ example when we fast. Spend time listening to praise and worship. Pray as often as you can throughout the day. Get away from the normal distractions as much as possible and keep your heart and mind set on seeking God’s will for us.

As we enter this time of heightened spiritual devotion, it’s important to be aware that Satan will do everything he can to pull us away from our prayer and Bible reading time. When we feel the enemy trying to discourage or distract us, we need to immediately go to God in prayer and ask Him to strengthen us in the face of difficulties and temptations.

How to End a Fast

Don’t overeat when the time comes to end the fast. Because our digestive systems have most likely reduced enzyme production, overeating or ingesting certain foods too quickly may cause nausea, stomach aches, or diarrhea. Introducing regular foods slowly will help break a fast safely, without disrupting the digestive system.


You may also be interested in …