New Book by Dr. Michael Fabarez

Have you ever either asked that question or wondered, how should I be praying for my Pastor? Certainly pastors have myriads of things that the body could be praying for. However, no prayer that you take before the throne room of grace has as far reaching and blessing potential than when you pray for the pastor’s time in the word and delivery of that word. Here is something from Pastor Fabarez that outlines specific ways to pray for the study, delivery and response to the word of God.

Interceding for the Sermon
“…pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word…” Col. 4:3


Pray for the Crafting of the Sermon

1. Pray that the message your pastor is preparing to preach would be an evident part of his own life.
2. Pray for the protection of your pastor’s sermon preparation time.
3. Pray that your pastor will be given grace and illumination to rightly divide God’s word.
4. Pray that the words your pastor chooses to frame the outline would be effective and powerful tools for the Holy Spirit to employ.
5. Pray that your pastor would have insight into the needs of the congregation as he prepares the sermon.

Pray for the Delivery of the Sermon

1. Pray that people will attend the preaching event.
2. Pray that the congregation will arrive in the right frame of mind.
3. Pray to God would guard against preaching distractions.
4. Pray for clarity and power in the pastor’s vocabulary.
5. Pray to God would give understanding to all who hear this week’s sermon.
6. Ask God for the most effective and fruitful sermon your pastor has ever preached.

Pray for the Response to the Sermon

1. Pray that all, including yourself, will put the sermon into practice.
2. Pray that the sermon will not be compartmentalized.
3. Pray that the application of the sermon would be contagious.
4. Pray that the sermon itself will be repeatedly delivered.

Praying for Sunday, You, Your Pastor, and the Next Sermon, Dr. Mike Fabarez

Gripped by Grace,
Alvin

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valley

I love this song. The choir encouraged us with this song during last Sunday’s service and my heart was being stirred by the Spirit. Rod and Tavi led this song at Junior High Bible Study last night and my heart was bursting.

I’ve been reflecting on these lyrics all week long.  This song communicates what our church is all about.  We are here to fill Southern California with the glory of King Jesus by spreading God’s Word and making Spirit-filled disciples.  I think this should be the theme song of Bethel Grace. I love this song!

Reflect carefully on these lyrics:

Your glorious cause, O God, engages our hearts
May Jesus Christ be known wherever we are
We ask not for ourselves but for Your renown
The cross has saved us so we pray,
Your kingdom come

Let Your kingdom come
Let Your will be done
So that everyone might know Your Name
Let Your song be heard everywhere on earth
Till Your sovereign work on earth is done
Let Your kingdom come

Give us Your strength, O God, and courage to speak
Perform Your wondrous deeds
Through those who are weak
Lord use us as You want, whatever the test
By grace we’ll preach Your gospel
Till our dying breath

Awesome.  Wonderful lyrics.  Is your heart engaged?  That song was inspired by this prayer in the Puritan book on prayer, The Valley of Vision.  Let’s pray this prayer lots:

Sovereign God,
Thy cause, not my own, engages my heart,
and I appeal to thee with greatest freedom
to set up thy kingdom in every place where Satan reigns;
Glorify thyself and I shall rejoice,
for to bring honor to thy name is my sole desire.
I adore thee that thou art God,
and long that other should know it, feel it,
and rejoice in it.

Follow this link to download a free mp3 of the song.  On that page, the Bob Kauflin of Sovereign Grace music explains how the Puritans’ passion to advance the gospel inspired the song.  Get the song while you can.  Get it into iTunes and listen to it lots.  Pray it lots. 

I can’t wait for this Sunday in Mark. We will hear Jesus’ first sermon: “The time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the Gospel.”

~Jeff

Prayer and God’s Plan

July 25, 2009

How does prayer fit into God’s plan? Doesn’t God know the future? Isn’t every last detail in His plan? So why pray? John Piper answers this question well – in a simple, readable way that won’t make your head explode! Read it here.

~Donovan

HT: Justin Taylor

Persecution in India

October 24, 2008

Christians in India need our prayers! For information on the persecution, see the “Urgent Prayer Request” link in the right column of the Good News India home page.

D.A. Carson is one of my favorite Bible teachers – I’ve been greatly blessed by both his sermons and his commentaries and other books. I was excited when Memoirs of an Ordinary Pastor: The Life and Reflections of Tom Carson was published at the beginning of this year… I’d heard or read Carson refer to his father several times, and each time the picture painted was a beautiful one of faithfulness, of true godliness. I just finished the book – I read it in less than a week, so wrapped up in it that I only put it down when I had to. It was a huge blessing to read! (and moved me to tears several times) I’ll share a few highlights from the book in later posts, but for now, here’s one reference Carson made to his father in another book, A Call to Spiritual Reformation: Priorities from Paul and His Prayers , pp25-26:

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This is my first post to the Christocentric Blog. I am a blessed man to be part of the Bethel Grace community. While spending some time in the office I looked at some information for conferences in the area and was directed to an interesting ministry. The conference is put on by a church community from Kansas City. I looked through the website for the conference and then the church. This ministry isn’t in agreement with many of the doctrines as Bethel Grace, but I had to keep looking at their ministry. For one reason alone, this church in Kansas City was founded on prayer. I know you are thinking every church is founded on prayer. But this church is quite different. Literally, a group of people met to have a prayer vigil. That prayer meeting hasn’t stopped according to their website. Since September 19, 1999, prayer has not stopped being offered up. What started as a small meeting has turned into a church, and into an international ministry trying to stir the fire in young adults. 

I found myself admiring this ministry.  I’m not advocating for it, nor am I in a place where I think this is the way for every Christian to function. But there is something admirable about Christians dedicated to prayer. The idea of having prayer offered up 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, is appealing. It is a realistic literal way of seeing 1 Thessalonians 5:17 in action. I like the idea of seeing Christians characterized by prayer. It is obedience in action, but more importantly it is dependence on a Holy God to act. That is beautiful. While it may not be a physical possibility to have Bethel Grace having its doors open 24 hours a day for ever believer to have a shift, I do hope that those that are members are characterized by prayer. So as the new guy on staff at Bethel Grace I hope that we are characterized by prayer and all the more as we see the Day of the Lord approaching. 

Drew Lepis

I don’t pray enough…

January 16, 2008

Someone very dear to me was going through a rough time recently. I could tell, and they knew I could… Before I could say much they looked me in the eye and very tiredly said, “I can’t share with you, Donovan”. That ripped a whole in my innards a mile wide… It confirmed something was wrong, and it also told me that I would not be able to help in ways I’d want to if I could…

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