Getting out this update has been a challenge. Everyday it seems like I get hit with a new curve ball or two. I am sure you are feeling the same way, right? You and I experiencing a major learning season.
Please pray for us as a staff and leadership team at Calvary. Just like you, we are trying to figure out when we can meet in person again. Regarding church meetings, we are working hard to get clarity on what we can and can’t do, and concerning what we should and shouldn’t do. Our leadership team at Calvary is processing and sharing in the context of prayer.
In this midst of this crisis, sometimes our governmental leaders have given us unclear or conflicting communications. Miscommunication is to be expected, because this situation is so complex. During this past week, the directive from Gov. Abbott got a little clearer: “Houses of worship should conduct as many activities as possible remotely….” Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo already had instructed churches to conduct “religious and worship services by video and teleconference.” And, as you know, the County Judge gave a new directive this past week regarding wearing masks in public until the end of May.
Whether or not you agree or disagree with our leaders, here is the bottom line. Pray for our local, state, and federal leaders. According to 1 Timothy 2:1-4, please pray FOR your leaders, not against them.
- Pray for the Lord to give leaders wisdom, godly counsel, and discernment.
- Ask the Lord to raise up godly counselors and insight for leaders.
- Pray for the Lord to protect leaders from the schemes of the enemy and from evil counsel.
- Pray for the protection and grace of the Lord to be hedge about our leaders.
- Pray for physical strength and heart (emotional) strength for leaders, and that they will have the grace of the Lord to overcome fear and discouragement (Joshua 1:9).
As always, if you have questions or comments about any of the issues in this blog, please communicate with me. You can reach me via email or cell (281-686-5291). For regular updates, please check the Calvary website and blog.
Prayers for this season
I wanted to share with you some of the ways in which I am praying in this season. Maybe these prayers will help give vocabulary to your prayers.
- Thanksgiving (Psalm 100:1-5; 105:1-11).
- Let’s think of what we are grateful for and celebrate.
- Let’s give God glory.
- When we give thanks to the Lord, it honors him and prepares the way for him to do more in our lives (Psalm 50:23).
- Worship (Matthew 6:9).
- Let’s worship the Lord and bless his holy name.
- The Lord’s Prayer begins with worship (Matthew 6:9). Perspective is everything. We soar into the throne room and come into presence of God through worship. Through worship of Creator God, who is our Father, we displace all other gods.
- Welcome (Matthew 6:10).
- Your kingdom come; your will be done on earth as it is in heaven (Matthew 6:10).
- Welcome the Lord, his kingdom, and his will into your life, your family, your neighborhood, your community, your city, your state, your nation, and your world. (See also Psalm 24:7-10.)
- Pray for our leaders: President Trump and our other local, state, and national leaders (1 Timothy 2:1-4; 2 Thessalonians 3:1-5).
- I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone– 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Savior, 4 who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth (1 Timothy 2:1-4 (NIV).
- May the Lord raise up the President and other leaders to resist forces of darkness and to bless the work of the kingdom of God.
- We rebuke every evil counsel around our leaders, and we pray for wisdom.
- Pray that any voices that our leaders are currently receiving as counsel and that are not from God would be silenced and exposed–especially as it relates to COVID-19.
- Especially as we get ready to release people to work, pray for wisdom, understanding, discernment for Harris County Judge Hidalgo, Gov. Abbott, Pres. Trump, and other leaders.
- Pray for the agenda and purposes of the Lord in the midst of COVID-19 (Romans 8:28-29; Hebrews 12:26-29; Psalm 46:10-11).
- This word in Psalm 46 is to the nations, not just to individuals: “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” 11 The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress” Psalm 46:10-11).
- The Lord wants to draw believers to himself, to a place of intimacy.
- We need to take advantage of this time, not just to fill our lives with TV, YouTube videos, video games, etc., but to draw closer to the Lord, to get intentional about spiritual practices, etc.
- The Lord wants to help the church to learn how to lean into him, to depend upon him, and to hear his voice.
- The Lord wants to mobilize believers to learn to be on mission with him in their spheres of influence.
- The Lord wants to position the church for his agenda after this isolation and intimacy of COVID-19.
- The Lord wants to detach us from putting our faith in the wrong things so that we attach our faith to him.
- The Lord wants to teach us how to pray and how to do spiritual warfare.
- What are some of the other agendas of the Lord for this hour?
- Pray that any evil agenda, whether it be economic, spiritual, or political, that is trying to attach itself to the COVID-19 pandemic or the aftermath of coronavirus, would be exposed, defeated, and torn down in the name of Jesus (John 10:10; 2 Corinthians 10:3-6).
- We are not ignorant of the enemy schemes.
- One scheme that is appearing regards changing laws or passing laws in the aftermath of COVID-19.
- The enemy wants to pass laws that take away our liberties, religious freedoms to gather, etc.
- Pray for and welcome only laws of righteousness and justice to come forth from the nations and the United Nations.
- Pray that the laws that come after coronavirus will not be manipulated by satan.
- We come against evil strategies in the name of Jesus.
- There are “experts” and other prognosticators, declaring that everything has changed, that we won’t gather in crowds, that we won’t be able to shake hands or hug others.
- We welcome what the Lord says, and not what others say (Hebrews 10:24-25).
- Cry out for healing in the land (2 Chronicles 7:14; Ezekiel 22:30).
- If we repent, he will forgive us and heal our land.
- We stand in the gap between the way things are and the way God wants them to be, and we cry out for mercy.
- Ask the Lord to let the power to walk in the miraculous be activated and increased in all of us (Luke 9:1-2; Acts 1:8; 19:8-20).
- Pray for a bold, courageous church to emerge (Isaiah 60:1-3; 43:1-22).
- Jesus taught us the reality of evil and the evil one (Matthew 6:13). Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil, disease, and the kingdom of darkness (1 John 3:8; Matthew 9:23-25; Luke 4:18-19; Colossians 1:13; 2:13-15). As you join Jesus on his mission, the Lord will use you to bring deliverance, to dispel darkness, to destroy the works of evil, and to advance the kingdom of God in power and light. Pray and say “no” to what the enemy wants to do, and say “yes” to what the Lord wants to do.
- According to 2 Corinthians 10:3-6, we have divinely powerful weapons for the pulling down of strongholds.
- According to Psalm 144:1-15, the Lord trains our hands for war. And, worship is one of those weapons of our warfare.
- Come against powers and evil forces– those who want to take advantage of this situation to their benefit, to destroy economies, to bring forth darkness, or to bring forth devastation—pray that those forces will be confused and snared in their own trap, in the name of Jesus.
- Come against spirits of fear, intimidation, and harassment (2 Timothy 1:7).
- For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline (2 Timothy 1:7 NIV).
- When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross. 15 And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross (Colossians 2:13-15 NIV).
- Pray for protection, grace, and strength for those who work in the medical industry: doctors, nurses, practitioners, technicians, janitors, cooks, office staff, etc.
- Pray for protection, grace, and strength for the people in our supply chains: workers in grocery stores, truck drivers, farmers, businesses, and others on the front lines.
- Pray for a spirit of generosity to come on God’s people (2 Corinthians 9:6-15).
- We pray for spirit of giving over the church and over our nation.
- We pray that there will be a release of funds, gifts, and financial blessings released from the people of God and the kingdom of God in the name of Jesus.
- Pray that we would obey the revelation and practical actions which God gives us (John 14:15).
- We need to practically rise to the challenge.
- We need to correctly read the signs of God and practically respond.
- We want to express the care and compassion of the Lord to others, especially to in need among us or around us.
- Ask the Lord to let the power to walk in the miraculous be activated in all of us (Luke 9:1-2; Acts 1:8; 19:8-20).
Thanks for being on this journey with us. Thanks for all you are doing through prayer. Thanks for what you are doing through leveraging technology for the kingdom of God. Thanks for all the ways you are expressing care and compassion to so many people. Thanks for being generous. Thanks for continuing to sow into the kingdom of God locally and globally through Calvary. Thanks for your support. Thanks for your prayers. Thanks for your love.
We will get through this together and by the grace of the Lord. With the help of God, we will not simply survive; we will thrive.
Senior Pastor, Calvary Community Church