7 for 7: Week 1

This week’s breath prayer: Awaken my desire for You.

Read

What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ.  Philippians 3:8

Meditate

We have desired many things as a Body, including new vision and purpose, deeper worship times, building improvements and more people to join us. However, if we don’t know and experience the value in knowing Jesus, these things will not bring life. New Hope’s future of being effective in our community depends upon how well we, as individuals, know Jesus… above all else.

Pray

Jesus, awaken our desire for You alone. Let us taste and see Your goodness, drink of the cup of Your suffering and realize that satisfaction comes from both. May we sit at Your table, which You have prepared, and drink first with You. And may we crave only that which You set before us… and nothing more. You are all we need.

Respond

Try saying this as you toss out trash this week, “I consider everything garbage that I may gain Christ.”

Try saying this as you go to sleep each night, “Lord, awaken me with hunger for you.”

Listen

“First” as performed by Lauren Daigle: http://bit.ly/1GIogsc

“Need You More” as performed by Kim Walker-Smith: http://bit.ly/2cxRKlr

Read

As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. Where can I go and meet with God?   Psalm 42:1-2

Meditate

We all long for intimacy. In this passage, the psalmist expresses a desperate desire for intimacy with the Living Lord. Adam and Eve experienced true intimacy with God in the Garden. God Himself longs for intimacy with us, His children! I hear Him call to me to come to Him. God alone is perfectly suited to meet my deepest needs. He promises that while I am seeking Him, He will be found.

Pray

Lord Jesus, as I sit here in Your presence, I hear Your Spirit calling to me and drawing me closer to You in a more intimate relationship than I have ever experienced. I thank You that You always long to have a deeper relationship with me. I thank You that as I reach out to You, You are near to me.

Respond

Throughout the day imagine the Lord seated next to you or walking beside you. Speak the breath prayer, “Awaken my desire for You,” each time you think of Him. Hear Him speaking to you,

“I alone can meet the deepest needs of your heart.”

Listen

“You Are My All In All” as performed by Nicole Nordeman: http://bit.ly/1ev8eI8

“Holy Spirit” as performed by Francesca Battistelli: http://bit.ly/2cbdE2c

“My Soul Longs for You” as performed by Jesus Culture: http://bit.ly/2crXq35

Read

You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek You; I thirst for You, my whole being longs for You, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.  Psalm 63:1

Meditate

David wrote this psalm while in the wilderness, running for his life and surrounded by 400 disgruntled debtors. He was literally experiencing thirst. Imagine cracked lips, thick tongue, weathered face. His ability to convert real life longings to truer spiritual longings points the way for us to tap into our spiritual longings. He allowed physical thirst and desperation to escort him to his deepest longing: a thirst for God Himself.

Pray

Lord, You said blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness. I confess I’m not sure I truly know this kind of deep soul longing. Would You bless me with a hunger and thirst for You like David experienced? Would You awaken me to this longing for You? Let hunger and thirst be made manifest in me.

Respond

Consider a weekly fast. This could be as simple as giving up a favorite beverage at a meal to skipping a meal or more. You decide. Do it at the same time each week. Every time you crave the thing you are fasting, convert it to a prayer, “Lord, give me the gift of hungering and thirsting for You.”

Listen

“Soul On Fire” as performed by Third Day: http://bit.ly/2cINuoc

“Everything and Nothing Less” as performed by Jesus Culture: http://bit.ly/2cbeXyl

Read

Whom have I in heaven but You? And earth has nothing I desire besides You.  Psalm 73:25

Meditate

The psalmist is about to give up spiritually because he is envious of the prosperity of the wicked. When he stops to consider things from God’s perspective, his response is that there is nothing on earth he desires except to be near Him. Likewise, when we begin to see life from His eternal perspective, we reach the same conclusion and decide that we have no one else like our God! Then He becomes the one we desire.

Pray

Father, I confess that You are the one I desire! Forgive me when I focus on people and things of this earth. I choose to see what You see. May the things of this earth grow faintly dim in the light of Your glory and grace. Nothing compares to You!

Respond

Consider ways you may be envious of other people and their success. Be careful to guard your heart. Set your mind on things above. Receive His love and know that He is drawing you near to Him.

Listen

“God is the Strength of My Heart” as performed by Don Moen: http://bit.ly/2cxnV7U

“Christ In Me” as performed by Jeremy Camp: http://bit.ly/1SIbfrM

“Psalm 73” as performed by Sons of Korah: http://bit.ly/2cnSwC5

 

Read

Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.”  John 6:35

Meditate

The Lord knows that my soul’s need for Him is even greater than my body’s need for food and drink. I need this spiritual food and water daily, just as I need physical food and water daily. The Lord draws near to me whenever I meditate upon every word from Him, relying upon His Spirit to meet my deepest needs.

Pray

Lord, You are the Bread of Life. I recognize my daily need of You. I thank You that You meet my deepest needs of spiritual food and drink. Increase my desire for You and reveal anything that may be keeping me from receiving everything You have for me.

Respond

Repeat the breath prayer, “Awaken my desire for You” throughout the day. As you breathe in, imagine feeding on the Word of God and drinking of the Spirit of God, which supplies all your deepest needs.

Listen

“Word of God Speak” as performed by Mercy Me: http://bit.ly/2brsiCn

“Speak O Lord” as performed by Kristyn Getty: http://bit.ly/2c9hBiZ

 

Read

As surely as the sun rises, He will appear; He will come to us like the winter rains, like the spring rains that water the earth.  Hosea 6:3

Meditate

This verse shows us a key to revival in our lives: the intentional, persistent pursuit of God. Revival is God’s arrival in a fresh outpouring rain of His Spirit on the arid landscape of our hearts. God’s response to our pressing on to acknowledge Him is as certain as sunrise tomorrow morning. The question is: do we desire Him enough to persistently pursue Him?

Pray

Father, I realize that I need a fresh arrival of Your presence in my life. I ask that by Your Spirit You will increase my desire to know You. Grant me strength to press on in pursuit of You. Thank You for the promise that You will appear to me as surely as the sun rises.

Respond

Do a search on YouTube.com for the song “Day by Day” from the musical Godspell. Close your eyes as you listen to the lyrics. Personalize them as a prayer for revival in your life.

Listen

“Let It Be Jesus” as performed by Christy Nockels: http://bit.ly/1OIOiBQ

 

Read

Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in Him.  Psalm 34:8

Meditate

In this, we see that God wants us to see Him daily and seek Him deeply. He is the definition of goodness and wants us to realize that. Just as we wake up in the morning and taste that first cup of coffee, He wants us to look around and recognize who He is and all He is doing. When we do that and fully experience His true goodness, we will seek Him in the good and the bad, just as He intended.

Pray

Let my eyes be opened to see Your goodness, Your kindness, Your faithfulness, O God. Let my mouth be so filled with the sweetness of Your grace that I cannot contain Your love. Let me see how Your presence surrounds me so that, in my turmoil, my instinct is to run fast into Your arms.

Respond

Take the first 30 minutes of today as you get dressed, make coffee, wake the kids up, head to work, to reflect on His goodness – how He has been faithful in your life. Throughout the day, when you become frustrated or struggle, reflect upon His goodness, say a short prayer of thanks for His goodness and ask Him to be your peace.

Listen

“Who Can Compare” as performed by Mary Kat Ehrenzellar: http://bit.ly/2cFC2Zn

“Hear My Cry O God” as performed by Esther Mui: http://bit.ly/2crZBDt