2018 Prayer Points

2017 prayer focus archived below, click here
2016 prayer focus archived below, click here
2015 prayer focus archived below, click here
2014 prayer focus archived below, click here
2013 prayer focus archived below, click here

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April – Spiritual Vitality – Pray, Share

Key Everyday Thought:

Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it (Proverbs 22:6).

Studies show that children between the ages of 4 and 14 are the most open to accepting Christ. If they do trust in Him at this stage, they are likely to remain committed for life. But there are so many destructive influences competing for their attention—at increasingly earlier ages. We can take comfort in knowing that God’s eternal Word still holds true. He reminds us that, even in these times, His love for children and His desire to see them learn His ways has not changed. His Spirit still pursues their hearts and His power and wisdom are still available to us to guide them into His best plans and purposes for their lives. He wants us to share His love with them, so that they learn early on that He desires to be their guide throughout their lifetimes. Let’s trust God together for both the eternal security of our children, and for His provision in our lives as parents, guardians and mentors to provide the acceptance, care, protection and godly counsel that they need.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That children throughout Canada will be viewed as the treasure they are
– That many will receive Christ at an early age and serve Him for life
– That they will be cared for and mentored by godly adults
– That they will be thoroughly exposed to God’s Word
– That God will grant parents and mentors patience and perseverance

PASSAGES TO PONDER

Mark 9:36-37

“Then he put a little child among them. Taking the child in his arms, he said to them, ‘Anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf welcomes me, and anyone who welcomes me welcomes not only me but also my Father who sent me.’”

Deuteronomy 11:16-21

“But be careful. Don’t let your heart be deceived so that you turn away from the Lord and serve and worship other gods. If you do, the Lord’s anger will burn against you. He will shut up the sky and hold back the rain, and the ground will fail to produce its harvests. Then you will quickly die in that good land the Lord is giving you.

“So commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these words of mine. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Teach them to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, so that as long as the sky remains above the earth, you and your children may flourish in the land the Lord swore to give your ancestors.”

Ephesians 6:4

“Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord.”

Exodus 20:12

“Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you.”

 

May – Missional Vitality – Read

Key Everyday Thought:

And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns (Philippians 1:6).

This month, our leaders will gather in Victoria, B.C., for our General Conference 2018, where we will launch centenary celebrations to honour God’s faithfulness to our Fellowship over the last 100 years. On an individual level, the Christian journey often begins full of joy and faith, and with plentiful stories of God’s miraculous intervention and provision. But often, over time, obstacles come which can bring disappointment, fatigue, or even bitterness and the temptation to abandon one’s faith in God’s plans and promises. Similarly, we can trace God’s mighty hand at work from the inception of our Fellowship right to the present time. Though difficulties in our society are on the increase, let’s pray this month that God will give us all continued vision and strength for His purposes in our lives, and for continued Spirit empowerment for the work He still wants to accomplish in the world through our Fellowship.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That we would maintain hearts of gratitude for all God has already done
– That we would recognize and overcome spiritual obstacles to growth
– That our leaders and congregations would be people of prayer
– That God will deliver us from evil and grant us His peace
– That our confidence in God’s power and promises would increase

PASSAGES TO PONDER

1 Chronicles 16:34
“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever.”

Luke 8:11-15
“This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is God’s word. The seeds that fell on the footpath represent those who hear the message, only to have the devil come and take it away from their hearts and prevent them from believing and being saved. The seeds on the rocky soil represent those who hear the message and receive it with joy. But since they don’t have deep roots, they believe for a while, then they fall away when they face temptation. The seeds that fell among the thorns represent those who hear the message, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the cares and riches and pleasures of this life. And so they never grow into maturity. And the seeds that fell on the good soil represent honest, good-hearted people who hear God’s word, cling to it, and patiently produce a huge harvest.”

Romans 12:12
“Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying.”

Ephesians 3:8-20
“Though I am the least deserving of all God’s people, he graciously gave me the privilege of telling the Gentiles about the endless treasures available to them in Christ. I was chosen to explain to everyone this mysterious plan that God, the Creator of all things, had kept secret from the beginning.
God’s purpose in all this was to use the church to display his wisdom in its rich variety to all the unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. This was his eternal plan, which he carried out through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Because of Christ and our faith in him, we can now come boldly and confidently into God’s presence. So please don’t lose heart because of my trials here. I am suffering for you, so you should feel honored.
When I think of all this, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.
Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.”

Revelation 3:10
“Because you have obeyed my command to persevere, I will protect you from the great time of testing that will come upon the whole world to test those who belong to this world.”

Acts 1:8
“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.”

 

June – Theological Vitality – Read

Key Everyday Thought:

Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings.” (John 8:31).

Many Canadians have never heard a clear explanation of the gospel. A wide range of faith options are available to those seeking greater spiritual meaning in their lives. Well-meaning Christians, in a desire to connect with others, can be tempted to compromise their understanding of Scripture in order to remain approachable and open to relationships with others. While the Bible encourages us to love and help others, it upholds Christ as being the sole source of salvation and the only key to a satisfying life. It has become even more important for Christ-followers to become grounded in God’s Word while cultivating a heart of love for God and for those with whom we have regular interactions. By building a strong foundation in our own spiritual lives, we are then able to be used by God’s Spirit to help bring others to faith in Christ.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That believers would continually study Christ’s teaching
– That we would remain faithful to what we have heard
– That we would explain our faith graciously
– That we would engage our culture with courage and not fear
– That God will grant us open doors to share the gospel

PASSAGES TO PONDER

John 14:6
“Jesus told him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.’”

1 Peter 3:15
“Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.”

2 Timothy 2:15
“Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.”

Colossians 4:2-6
“Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart. Pray for us, too, that God will give us many opportunities to speak about his mysterious plan concerning Christ. That is why I am here in chains. Pray that I will proclaim this message as clearly as I should. Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.”

1 Corinthians 9:19-22
“Even though I am a free man with no master, I have become a slave to all people to bring many to Christ. When I was with the Jews, I lived like a Jew to bring the Jews to Christ. When I was with those who follow the Jewish law, I too lived under that law. Even though I am not subject to the law, I did this so I could bring to Christ those who are under the law. When I am with the Gentiles who do not follow the Jewish law, I too live apart from that law so I can bring them to Christ. But I do not ignore the law of God; I obey the law of Christ. When I am with those who are weak, I share their weakness, for I want to bring the weak to Christ. Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some.”

 

July – Missional Vitality – Give, Share

Key Everyday Thought:

What joy for the nation whose God is the LORD, whose people he has chosen as his inheritance (Psalm 33:12).

The Bible reveals God as the Creator of the universe who loves the nations and all its people—so we know that He is passionate about Canada. God’s desire is that the nations acknowledge Him and experience eternal and purposeful life in Him through faith in Christ. As the leaders of a nation honour God in their lives and decisions, He uses them as a conduit for blessings which all their citizens ultimately enjoy. His desire is that each citizen in each nation be provided for in every way—to know that their lives are valuable and that they can experience a life of safety, provision, purpose and peace. While this is not always possible in a world corrupted by sin and the unseen forces of evil, it is what He has asked His children, with His help, to continuously work towards. Let’s place Canada’s future in God’s hands and trust Him to help our leaders to consider how their decisions will impact generations to come.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That Canada will experience God’s best plans for our nation
– That our nation’s leaders would govern with respect for God’s rule
– That Christian leaders will find favour with government officials
– That Canadian society will be influenced at all levels toward faith in Christ
– That Canadian families will turn to the Lord and experience God’s promises

PASSAGES TO PONDER

Proverbs 14:34
“Godliness makes a nation great, but sin is a disgrace to any people.”

Proverbs 11:14
“Without wise leadership, a nation falls; there is safety in having many advisers.”

Job 12:23-25
“He builds up nations, and he destroys them.
He expands nations, and he abandons them.
He strips kings of understanding
and leaves them wandering in a pathless wasteland.
They grope in the darkness without a light.
He makes them stagger like drunkards.”

Psalm 22:27
“The whole earth will acknowledge the LORD and return to him.
All the families of the nations will bow down before him.”

Proverbs 2:1-8
“My child, listen to what I say,
and treasure my commands.
Tune your ears to wisdom,
and concentrate on understanding.
Cry out for insight,
and ask for understanding.
Search for them as you would for silver;
seek them like hidden treasures.
Then you will understand what it means to fear the Lord,
and you will gain knowledge of God.
For the Lord grants wisdom!
From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.
He grants a treasure of common sense to the honest.
He is a shield to those who walk with integrity.
He guards the paths of the just
and protects those who are faithful to him.”

John 10:10
“The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.”

 

August – Spiritual Vitality – Pray

Key Everyday Thought:

But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength (Isaiah 40:31a).

Depending on where you live and your life circumstances, rest and relaxation can be difficult to set aside time for. Yet our minds and bodies were not designed for never-ending use—regular time out to slow down is needed for healthy and productive living. Without an appropriate rhythm for recharging our spirits and renewing our strength, our efficiency and sense of purpose and direction is likely to falter. We regularly need to be reminded that putting God first and spending intentional blocks of time focusing on His presence and His Word will keep us encouraged, help us maintain healthy spirits, and give us the courage we need to face difficult situations. A special time out annually for a vacation, retreat, or a change of environment, whether during the summer or at some other point of the year, can also give us a renewed appreciation for the work to which God has called us. If you are feeling burned out, turn to God and allow Him to restore you—no one who comes to Him will be turned away.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That as Christians we will rely on God and not on ourselves
– That we will continually be drawn to God’s presence and His Word
– That our faith and strength will be renewed by His Spirit
– That doors will open for the weary to find opportunities for rest
– That those who feel weak will turn to God and find the strength they need

PASSAGES TO PONDER

Psalm 127:1-2

“Unless the LORD builds a house,
the work of the builders is wasted.
Unless the LORD protects a city,
guarding it with sentries will do no good.
It is useless for you to work so hard
from early morning until late at night,
anxiously working for food to eat;
for God gives rest to his loved ones.”

Psalm 73:26-28

“My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak,
but God remains the strength of my heart;
he is mine forever.
Those who desert him will perish,
for you destroy those who abandon you.
But as for me, how good it is to be near God!
I have made the Sovereign LORD my shelter,
and I will tell everyone about the wonderful things you do.”

Hebrews 12:12-13

“So take a new grip with your tired hands and strengthen your weak knees. Mark out a straight path for your feet so that those who are weak and lame will not fall but become strong.”

Philippians 4:13

“For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.”

Hebrews 4:16

“So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.”

 

September – Theological Vitality – Read, Share

Key Everyday Thought:

Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity (1 Timothy 4:12b).

College and university life can represent so many things to a young person—a chance to meet new friends, develop a social life, and be exposed to a lot of exciting information in preparation for a meaningful career. For others, it can represent a time of anxiety, feelings of isolation and uncertainty about the future, and for Christian students, the temptation to abandon trust in Jesus. God wants each one to know that He loves them, created them with a specific purpose in mind, cares about their situation now, and has plans for their future. Pray for each one to be awakened to their need for God and the salvation that is offered to them through Christ. Pray that they would reach out to Him when they face difficulties, and that they would experience the deliverance He offers. Pray that our campus outreaches and ministries would see continued growth and favour so that Canada’s two million post-secondary students will have a gospel witness wherever they are attending classes.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That Christian students will be strengthened in their faith
– That God’s Spirit will help them to resist temptation
– That they will be granted boldness to share the gospel
– That all students will learn to trust in God’s good plans for their lives
– That those seeking hope will find it in Christ
– That Christian witness and ministry will have a powerful impact

PASSAGES TO PONDER

1 Corinthians 10:13

“The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.”

Deuteronomy 31:6

“So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the LORD your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.”

Psalm 119:9

“How can a young person stay pure?
By obeying your word.”

Jeremiah 29:11
“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the LORD. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.’”

Philippians 4:6-7
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”

 

October – Spiritual Vitality – Give

Key Everyday Thought:

Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon (Isaiah 58:10).

God’s concern for the poor, the hungry, the marginalized and the oppressed emerges consistently and prominently throughout the Scriptures. He reveals both righteousness and justice as intimately connected dimensions of His character, and asks those who belong to Him to develop character that equally expresses these attributes as well. As we take steps of faith to honour God’s desire, He helps us, and the impact is multiplied. When we take notice and share our resources with those who are struggling to survive, not only is our generosity a gift of hope to someone who may be in despair, but God’s loving nature is revealed and a pathway to Christ’s presence and the truth of the gospel is opened. When we interrupt oppressive practices through advocacy or support for those most harmed, we open the way for the kingdom of God to advance here on earth, shaping earthly life to more closely resemble what God intended it to be. While not everyone who receives our help may hear or accept Jesus’ message, let’s pray that His glory is revealed in our efforts.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That we will grow in character reflecting both righteousness and justice
– That we will have increased sensitivity to available opportunities to give and serve
– That God will raise up more ministries serving into the needs of the poor and oppressed
– That existing ministries will be strengthened and equipped for greater effectiveness
– That those in despair will find hope in Christ as they experience practical help

PASSAGES TO PONDER

Matthew 25:35

“For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home.”

James 2:14-18

“What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone? Suppose you see a brother or sister who has no food or clothing, and you say, ‘Good-bye and have a good day; stay warm and eat well’—but then you don’t give that person any food or clothing. What good does that do?
So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.
Now someone may argue, ‘Some people have faith; others have good deeds.’ But I say, ‘How can you show me your faith if you don’t have good deeds? I will show you my faith by my good deeds.’”

Deuteronomy 15:7

“If anyone is poor among your fellow Israelites in any of the towns of the land the LORD your God is giving you, do not be hardhearted or tightfisted toward them.”

Galatians 6:2

“Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ.”

Isaiah 61:1-2

“The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is upon me,
for the LORD has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted
and to proclaim that captives will be released
and prisoners will be freed.
He has sent me to tell those who mourn
that the time of the LORD’s favor has come,
and with it, the day of God’s anger against their enemies.”

 

November – Missional Vitality – Pray

Key Everyday Thought:

God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs (Matthew 5:10).

When we put our faith in Christ, the Holy Spirit gives us new hearts and begins to change the way we think. Our sensitivity to wrong-doing increases, and we are no longer able to feel comfortable actively engaging in thoughts, speech or activities that we come to understand causes pain to the Holy Spirit or diminishes His active communication to us. Jesus warns us that we can expect rejection, and even hatred, for putting our faith in Him and living in alignment with His commands. In some countries, believers can anticipate punishment for turning away from accepted patterns and practices in the society where they live, especially those which explicitly reject Christ’s claim to be the Son of God. This month, let’s pray that God will strengthen Christians living in countries where we can still live out our faith freely, helping us to choose obedience in spite of opposition, intimidation, peer pressure or rejection. Let’s also pray for God to deliver those who are suffering severely for their faith, that God will help them to stand firm in Christ, forgiving and praying for those who hurt them.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That Christians worldwide will stand firm and faithful to God’s Word
– That those suffering for their faith will keep their eyes on Christ
– That God will deliver those who live in fear of death
– That God will change the hearts of persecutors to understand the gospel
– That Christ’s church will continue to grow and prosper

PASSAGES TO PONDER

2 Corinthians 12:10
“That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Romans 8:35
“Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death?”

Matthew 5:43-44
“You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. But I say, love your enemies!”

John 15:18-19
“If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you.”

Psalm 31:15

“My future is in your hands.
Rescue me from those who hunt me down relentlessly.”

Romans 8:17-22

“And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.
“Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later. For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are. Against its will, all creation was subjected to God’s curse. But with eager hope, the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God’s children in glorious freedom from death and decay. For we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.”

 

December – Theological Vitality – Share

Key Everyday Thought:

…the Lord himself will give you the sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (which means “God is with us”) (Isaiah 7:14).

We often take for granted that everyone around us has heard the real story behind Christmas celebrations. Earthly traditions—beautifully decorated Christmas trees, the excitement of buying presents for family and friends, spending time with some of our favourite people, and preparing and consuming tasty holiday food and drinks—can all crowd out our focus on the birth of Christ, the central purpose of the season. Many Canadians, in fact, have never heard the biblical account of God sending His Son in the human form of a baby, born of Mary, a virgin, to grow up and willingly offer His own life on a cross as a sacrifice for the sins of the entire world. In obedience to His Father, Jesus took on the guilt of our sins, accepting its punishment, death, so that each person who puts their faith in Him could be forgiven and declared to be in right standing with God. By putting our faith in Christ for forgiveness, we are each given the free gift of eternal life. Let’s constantly remember and share with others the real reason we celebrate the wonder of Christ’s birth.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That Christians would keep the true meaning of Christmas in focus
– That God will open up opportunities to share the Christmas story with others
– That God will reveal Himself to those who are searching for Him
– That strained relationships will be restored as family and friends celebrate together
– That Christ will increase our faith and courage to live for Him in the coming year

PASSAGES TO PONDER

Zechariah 9:9
“Rejoice, O people of Zion!
Shout in triumph, O people of Jerusalem!
Look, your king is coming to you.
He is righteous and victorious,
yet he is humble, riding on a donkey—
riding on a donkey’s colt.”

John 3:16-17
“For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.”

John 1:14
“So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.”

Romans 6:23
“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Luke 2:1-20
“At that time the Roman emperor, Augustus, decreed that a census should be taken throughout the Roman Empire. (This was the first census taken when Quirinius was governor of Syria.) All returned to their own ancestral towns to register for this census. And because Joseph was a descendant of King David, he had to go to Bethlehem in Judea, David’s ancient home. He traveled there from the village of Nazareth in Galilee. He took with him Mary, his fiancée, who was now obviously pregnant.
And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born. She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them.
That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them. ‘Don’t be afraid!’ he said. ‘I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.’”
“Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying,
‘Glory to God in highest heaven,
and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.’
When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, ‘Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.’”

“They hurried to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger. After seeing him, the shepherds told everyone what had happened and what the angel had said to them about this child. All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished, but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often. The shepherds went back to their flocks, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. It was just as the angel had told them.”

January 2018 – Spiritual Vitality – Read, Pray

Key Everyday Thought:

What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit His soul? (Mark 8:36).

Time is a precious gift. We each have 24 hours on any given day, but at any moment, the complete picture of the length of our lifetime is always unknown. God’s primary purpose for us is relationship with Him, but He can easily be crowded out of all the plans and activities tugging at our hearts for our time and attention. Only with His help, strength and direction can we use each hour and each day we’ve been given to the best of our ability, and for Christ’s honour. You are unique, and God’s plan for your life is like no one else’s. Each day this month, invite the Lord to quiet your heart and to absorb His Word, long enough for Him to align your activities and your life to His best plans for you.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That we will each have a deepened sense of the brevity of life
– That God will increase our love for Him
– That we will learn how to wait patiently on God’s timing
– That we will trust God with our difficult situations
– That we will trust God’s plan for our lives

PASSAGES TO PONDER
Psalm 90:12
“Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom.”

Deuteronomy 10:12
“And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you? He requires only that you fear the LORD your God, and live in a way that pleases him, and love him and serve him with all your heart and soul.”

Psalm 62:1
“…I wait quietly before God, for my victory comes from him.”

Jeremiah 6:16a
“This is what the LORD says: ‘Stop at the crossroads and look around. Ask for the old, godly way, and walk in it. Travel its path, and you will find rest for your souls…’”

February – Missional Vitality – Share

Key Everyday Thought:

No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us (1 John 4:12).

God is love. Broken relationships, tension and division regularly remind us that we live in a fallen world, far different from what our Creator had in mind when life first began. But as we turn to our Father through faith in Christ, and allow Him to make us more like Jesus, His heart for forgiveness, understanding and unity in community become more evident in our lives. In turn, our love for God, family, friends, strangers, and even enemies, helps a fallen world see evidence of God’s beauty and power in even the most unpleasant situations. This month, let’s ask the Lord to help us see each other as made in His image, and lean on Him to express His generous grace and love to each person He places in our lives. With His help, we can learn to love our neighbour as we love ourselves, and move closer to the unity we crave in our families, churches and communities.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That we will understand more what it means to be made in God’s image
– That God will help us to be patient with others as He is patient with us
– That we will look for opportunities to mend broken relationships
– That our churches will be places of refuge for lonely people
– That the world will see Christ at work in our hearts and lives

PASSAGES TO PONDER
Colossians 3:13-15
“Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.”

John 13:34-35
“So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”

Romans 12:9-19
“Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically. Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality.
Bless those who persecute you. Don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them. Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with each other. Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all!
Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.
Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, ‘I will take revenge; I will pay them back,’ says the LORD.”

Hebrews 10:24-25
“Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.”

March – Theological Vitality – Read, Share

Key Everyday Thought:

Jesus is the resurrection and the life, and anyone who believes in Him will live, even after dying (John 11:25).

The message of the gospel is called good news because it applies to everyone, whatever their age, background or circumstances. Every Easter, our churches welcome many people who may only visit once or twice a year. Some may never have been to church at all. They may be living out a season of great joy and contentment in their life journey, or they may be experiencing tremendous turmoil. We have this message of hope to offer each one who comes—that there is life beyond what we are experiencing now, and that when we put our faith in Christ for the forgiveness of our sins, we can experience true freedom—peace with God, and life after death, for eternity. As we approach yet another Easter celebration, let’s ask God to deepen our own appreciation each day for the life-changing message we have already heard and accepted, and for the boldness to share it with others as we are given opportunities.

Ask and it will be granted…
– That Canadians’ hearts everywhere will be opened to the gospel
– That the gospel will be preached in the Spirit’s power throughout Canada
– That those seeking hope and truth will find it
– That those in bondage will find freedom in Christ
– That God will grant believers continued boldness to share their faith

PASSAGES TO PONDER

John 12:23-25

“Jesus replied, ‘The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life.’”

Isaiah 55:1-2

“Is anyone thirsty?
Come and drink—
even if you have no money!
Come, take your choice of wine or milk—
it’s all free!
Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength?
Why pay for food that does you no good?
Listen to me, and you will eat what is good.
You will enjoy the finest food.”

John 16:33

“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”

1 John 2:17

“And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.”

 


 

January 2017 (Spiritual Vitality)


For single-minded focus on Christ’s mission

  • That we will prioritize our time and energy around eternal purposes.
  • That we will recognize and respond to God’s invitations for intimate relationship through prayer.
  • That we will hear and understand our part in God’s plan for our families, communities, nation and the world.
  • For courage to be consistently obedient to God’s leading.
  • That we will grow in our love for and understanding of His Word.
  • That the transformational presence of God will be in all of our churches and families.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Matthew 22:34-40

Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Matthew 25:31-40

“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne.  All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ ”

Isaiah 30:19-22

People of Zion, who live in Jerusalem, you will weep no more. How gracious he will be when you cry for help! As soon as he hears, he will answer you. Although the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, your teachers will be hidden no more; with your own eyes you will see them. Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” Then you will desecrate your idols overlaid with silver and your images covered with gold; you will throw them away like a menstrual cloth and say to them, “Away with you!”

Isaiah 65:1-2,

“I revealed myself to those who did not ask for me;
    I was found by those who did not seek me.
To a nation that did not call on my name,
    I said, ‘Here am I, here am I.’
All day long I have held out my hands
    to an obstinate people,
who walk in ways not good,
    pursuing their own imaginations—

February 2017 (Missional Vitality)

For a strengthened sense of unity and community

  • That our relationships will honour the unity demonstrated by the Trinity—the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
  • That our families, neighbourhoods and churches will experience and reflect Christlike community marked by grace, mutual understanding, forgiveness and generosity.
  • That we will be intentional in seeking to integrate and unite all members of our various communities in fellowship and worship.
  • That we would recognize barriers to genuine unity and seek God’s power to overcome them.
  • That we would be the answer to Jesus’ passionate prayer to be in complete unity so the world would see Him for who He is.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

John 17:20-26

“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one—I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

“Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.

“Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”

Acts 4:32-37

All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need.

Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means “son of encouragement”), sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles’ feet.

John 15:13

Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.

Galatians 3:26-28

So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

Psalm 133:1-3

How good and pleasant it is
    when God’s people live together in unity!

It is like precious oil poured on the head,
    running down on the beard,
running down on Aaron’s beard,
    down on the collar of his robe.
It is as if the dew of Hermon
    were falling on Mount Zion.
For there the Lord bestows his blessing,
    even life forevermore.

March 2017 (Theological Vitality)

For many lives to be transformed by the gospel this Easter

  • That God will open up many opportunities for Christians to share the gospel and the significance of Good Friday and Easter Sunday, and that many hearts will receive the Lord for the first time.
  • That the true significance of Christ’s life, death and resurrection will be deepened in the hearts of those with lukewarm or wavering faith.
  • That God will prepare our faith communities to receive and engage all who are seeking a sense of belonging and hope for themselves and their loved ones.
  • That truth will be communicated with grace and love to those seeking practical and biblical wisdom for their personal circumstances.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Ephesians 1:18-20

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people,  and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms.

Ezekiel 34:11-16

For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I myself will search for my sheep and look after them. As a shepherd looks after his scattered flock when he is with them, so will I look after my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places where they were scattered on a day of clouds and darkness. I will bring them out from the nations and gather them from the countries, and I will bring them into their own land. I will pasture them on the mountains of Israel, in the ravines and in all the settlements in the land. I will tend them in a good pasture, and the mountain heights of Israel will be their grazing land. There they will lie down in good grazing land, and there they will feed in a rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. I myself will tend my sheep and have them lie down, declares the Sovereign Lord. I will search for the lost and bring back the strays. I will bind up the injured and strengthen the weak, but the sleek and the strong I will destroy. I will shepherd the flock with justice.

1 Peter 5:1-4

To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings who also will share in the glory to be revealed: Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.

Ecclesiastes 4:8-12

There was a man all alone;
    he had neither son nor brother.
There was no end to his toil,
    yet his eyes were not content with his wealth.
“For whom am I toiling,” he asked,
    “and why am I depriving myself of enjoyment?”
This too is meaningless—
    a miserable business!

Two are better than one,
    because they have a good return for their labor:
If either of them falls down,
    one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls
    and has no one to help them up.
Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
    But how can one keep warm alone?
Though one may be overpowered,
    two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

Galatians 6:1, 2

Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.

April 2017 (Spiritual Vitality)

For intergenerational understanding, appreciation and faith-building

  • That believers of all ages throughout our Fellowship will relate meaningfully with brothers and sisters in Christ across generations.
  • That the homes of church families will be places where children and youth who do not know Jesus can be welcomed and introduced to the message of the gospel.
  • That children and youth will grow in their biblical understanding of respect for authority and love for their neighbour.
  • That adult believers of all ages will be intentional about understanding, encouraging and mentoring younger believers and modeling biblical faith.
  • For wisdom and effectiveness among leaders and teachers working with children and youth.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Romans 15:7

Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.

1 Corinthians 1:10

I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought.

Ephesians 6:1-4

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise—“so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”

Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

1 Timothy 4:12

Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.

Colossians 3:20, 21

Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.

Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.

Deuteronomy 6:6-9

These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.  Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.

May 2017 (Theological Vitality)

For God’s protection and help for our families

  • That God will help families to strengthen their marriages and family relationships, and to rebuild connections that have been broken.
  • That God’s Word will be the most important reference point for wisdom and direction as opportunities and challenges arise.
  • That those in despair will find hope and comfort in Christ and His promises.
  • That parents and guardians will have godly wisdom in taking care of their responsibilities and making decisions.
  • That children will grow in discernment and in their desire to please God and be a blessing in their families.
  • That God will deliver and protect our families from harmful spiritual influences.

 PASSAGES TO PONDER:

1 Corinthians 13:4-8a

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. 

 

Colossians 3:12-14

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

Psalm 119:105, 106

Your word is a lamp for my feet,
    a light on my path.
I have taken an oath and confirmed it,
    that I will follow your righteous laws.

James 1:5

If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

Proverbs 1:8

Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction
    and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.

Psalm 103:17, 18

But from everlasting to everlasting
    the Lord’s love is with those who fear him,
    and his righteousness with their children’s children—
with those who keep his covenant
    and remember to obey his precepts.

June 2017 (Missional Vitality)

For authentic, passionate Pentecostal leadership and congregations

  • That our leaders and ministers will hunger for God’s presence and the Spirit’s work, gifts and expressions.
  • That they would walk in companionship with the Spirit and be open to all that Jesus promised the Spirit would provide.
  • For congregations to be increasingly filled with anticipation for the Spirit to reveal Himself and transform lives each time the family of God meets.
  • That God will increase our understanding of our need for continual dependence on Him, and we will begin to consciously “practise His presence.”
  • That believing prayer will become an increasingly significant part of our individual, congregational and community experience.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Luke 4:14-21

Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. He was teaching in their synagogues, and everyone praised him.

He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
    because he has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
    and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

Ephesians 5:15-20

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Acts 3:19

Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord

Acts 1:7-8

He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Psalm 139:1-18

You have searched me, Lord,
    and you know me.
You know when I sit and when I rise;
    you perceive my thoughts from afar.
You discern my going out and my lying down;
    you are familiar with all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue
    you, Lord, know it completely.
You hem me in behind and before,
    and you lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too lofty for me to attain.

Where can I go from your Spirit?
    Where can I flee from your presence?

If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
    if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
    if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
    your right hand will hold me fast.

If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me
    and the light become night around me,”
even the darkness will not be dark to you;
    the night will shine like the day,
    for darkness is as light to you.

For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
    when I was made in the secret place,
    when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
    all the days ordained for me were written in your book
    before one of them came to be.
How precious to me are your thoughts, God!
    How vast is the sum of them!
Were I to count them,
    they would outnumber the grains of sand—
    when I awake, I am still with you.

July 2017 (Missional Vitality)

For God’s glory to be revealed in our nation

  • In celebrating our 150th birthday as a nation, that we would be thankful and appreciative of God’s kindness and that many more of our citizens’ hearts will turn to Him in the months and years ahead.
  • That God will continue to bless Canada with provision, protection and direction.
  • For wisdom, understanding, integrity and strength for our government leaders and judges at all levels—federal, provincial, and municipal.
  • That God will strengthen the faith of Christ-followers throughout Canada, and grant them boldness to share the gospel in word and deed wherever He has placed them.
  • That evangelical individuals and organizations will find favour as they seek opportunities to be godly influences in cities and communities across Canada.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

1 Chronicles 16:34

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.

1 Timothy 2:1-3

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior…

Isaiah 52:7

How beautiful on the mountains
    are the feet of those who bring good news,
who proclaim peace,
    who bring good tidings,
    who proclaim salvation,
who say to Zion,
    “Your God reigns!”

Matthew 10:16

I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.

August 2017 (Spiritual Vitality)

For Sabbath rest for the minds, bodies and spirits of both the strong and the weary

  • That believers everywhere will be consistent and intentional about building rest, reflection and unhurried time with God into our daily routines.
  • That we will become more intentional about protecting a time of weekly rest and worship.
  • That we will value our bodies as the temple of the Holy Spirit and allow the Lord to help us be good stewards of what He has given us, both spiritually and in practical ways, such as healthy eating and regular exercise.
  • That we will take the time to reflect on God’s work in our lives and in the world around us, and to listen to what He has in mind to do next.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Isaiah 30:15a

This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says:

“In repentance and rest is your salvation,
    in quietness and trust is your strength…”

Exodus 20:8-11

“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.”

Isaiah 58:13-14

“If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath
    and from doing as you please on my holy day,
if you call the Sabbath a delight
    and the Lord’s holy day honorable,
and if you honor it by not going your own way
    and not doing as you please or speaking idle words,
then you will find your joy in the Lord,
    and I will cause you to ride in triumph on the heights of the land
    and to feast on the inheritance of your father Jacob.”
For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.

Isaiah 43:19

See, I am doing a new thing!
    Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
    and streams in the wasteland.

September 2017 (Theological Vitality)

For effective youth and campus evangelization and discipleship

  • That Christians will consistently share and live out biblical principles with youth and young adults who can observe their faithful obedience closely.
  • That youth and young adults will be drawn by God’s Spirit to seek Him with all their hearts, and that they will find Him.
  • That young adults who have strayed away from their childhood faith will find opportunities to reconnect with God and His people on campus.
  • That loving communities of Christian faith will find favour and opportunities for greater outreach on every campus in Canada.
  • That meaningful discipleship will grow and flourish wherever God places Christian representatives to serve.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

2 Timothy 4:1-5

In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.

2 Timothy 2:14-15

Keep reminding God’s people of these things. Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen. Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

Jeremiah 29:11-13

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

Proverbs 27:17

 As iron sharpens iron,
    so one person sharpens another.

October 2017 (Spiritual Vitality)

For an unwavering focus on righteousness and justice

  • That we would increase in our understanding as a Pentecostal family of what it means to be one in mission together, demonstrating God’s love for humanity.
  • That we would embrace a high view of Scripture and live with moral and relational integrity while seeking transformation in our communities, our nation and our world.
  • That men, women and children throughout our Fellowship will have continued sharpened sensitivity and a meaningful response to both the spiritual and practical needs of those less fortunate, oppressed, and vulnerable in Canada and around the world.
  • That God will open up opportunities for the church to influence the public context through life and speech, affirming what is right and confronting what is wrong.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Acts 4:8-12, 29-31

Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them: “Rulers and elders of the people! If we are being called to account today for an act of kindness shown to a man who was lame and are being asked how he was healed, then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. Jesus is

“‘the stone you builders rejected,
    which has become the cornerstone.’

Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”

Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”

After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.

1 Peter 2:9-12

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul. Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.

Romans 12:3-8

For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.

Micah 6:6-8

With what shall I come before the Lord
    and bow down before the exalted God?
Shall I come before him with burnt offerings,
    with calves a year old?
Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams,
    with ten thousand rivers of olive oil?
Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression,
    the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?
He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
    And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
    and to walk humbly with your God.

James 1:26, 27

Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless. Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

November 2017 (Missional Vitality)

For God’s help, strength and deliverance for persecuted Christians

  • That God will strengthen, deliver and protect Christians being oppressed or attacked for their faith.
  • That the gospel will continue to spread in spite of opposition, and that even the hearts of persecutors will be changed.
  • For the restoration of homes and resources for those who have suffered loss as a result of discrimination or violence.
  • For refugees around the world to be integrated successfully into their countries of refuge, and especially for those being resettled to Canada through PAOC’s sponsorship agreement with the Canadian government.
  • That Christians everywhere will be empowered by the Holy Spirit to be strong in the face of opposition and will share and live out their faith without fear.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

John 15:19

If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.

Matthew 5:44

But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.

2 Corinthians 4:8-10

We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.

Romans 12:17-21

Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary:

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
    if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Deuteronomy 10:19

“And you are to love those who are foreigners, for you yourselves were foreigners in Egypt.”

John 16:33

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

 

December 2017 (Theological Vitality)

For the true meaning of Christmas to be celebrated and declared

 

  • That God’s Spirit will lead Christians to learn more about the season of advent and to embrace its full meaning.
  • That we will be responsive to opportunities to share the truth about Christ and the meaning of advent with our neighbours, friends and families.
  • That our churches will be effective in sharing the message of Christ’s birth, life, death and resurrection, so that many hearts and lives will be changed this Christmas.
  • That we will recognize thoughtful ways to express God’s love to those without hope during this season and always.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Matthew 1:18-25

This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.

But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”

All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).

When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

Luke 2:1-20

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.)  And everyone went to their own town to register.

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.  An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
    and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

Isaiah 9:6

For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given,
    and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
    Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 61:1

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
    because the Lord has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
    to proclaim freedom for the captives
    and release from darkness for the prisoners…

1 John 3:18

Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.


January 2016 (Spiritual Vitality)


For greater personal intimacy with the Lord

  • That we will each recognize and respond to God’s invitations to draw closer.
  • For a greater sense of humility, continual brokenness and purity of heart.
  • For increased confidence in God’s promises.
  • For faithfulness in the calling and responsibilities that God has for each of us.
  • That we will model Spirit-empowered lives and ministries.
  • That the transformational presence of God will be in all of our churches and families.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Luke 3:21-22

When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as he was praying, heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.”

Matthew 17:1-8

After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light. Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus.
Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you wish, I will put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.”
While he was still speaking, a bright cloud covered them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!”
When the disciples heard this, they fell facedown to the ground, terrified. But Jesus came and touched them. “Get up,” he said. “Don’t be afraid.” When they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus.

Matthew 22:34-40

Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Ezekiel 36:24-27

“‘For I will take you out of the nations; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back into your own land. I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.’

Revelation 2:1-7

“To the angel of the church in Ephesus write:
These are the words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven golden lampstands. I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary.
Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place.  But you have this in your favor: You hate the practices of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.
Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.

February 2016 (Missional Vitality)

For greater connectedness and unity with each other

  • That our relationships will honour the unity demonstrated by the Trinity—the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
  • That our families, neighbourhoods and churches will experience and reflect Christlike community marked by grace, mutual understanding, forgiveness and generosity.
  • That those serving in ministries throughout our Fellowship will value all relationships more highly than the actual tasks being carried out.
  • That we would be the answer to Jesus’ passionate prayer to be in complete unity so the world would see Him for who He is.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

John 17:20-26

“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one—I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

“Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.

“Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”

Acts 4:32-37

All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need.

Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means “son of encouragement”), sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles’ feet.

John 15:13

Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.

Galatians 3:26-28

So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

Psalm 133:1-3

How good and pleasant it is
    when God’s people live together in unity!

It is like precious oil poured on the head,
    running down on the beard,
running down on Aaron’s beard,
    down on the collar of his robe.
It is as if the dew of Hermon
    were falling on Mount Zion.
For there the Lord bestows his blessing,
    even life forevermore.

March 2016 (Theological Vitality)

For many lives to be transformed by the gospel this Easter

  • That God will open up many opportunities for Christians to share the gospel and the significance of Good Friday and Easter Sunday, and that many hearts will receive the Lord for the first time.
  • That the true significance of Christ’s life, death and resurrection will be deepened in the hearts of those with lukewarm or wavering faith.
  • That God will prepare our faith communities to receive and engage all who are seeking a sense of belonging and hope for themselves and their loved ones.
  • That truth will be communicated with grace and love to those seeking practical and biblical wisdom for their personal circumstances.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Ephesians 1:18-20

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people,  and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms.

Ezekiel 34:11-16

For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I myself will search for my sheep and look after them. As a shepherd looks after his scattered flock when he is with them, so will I look after my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places where they were scattered on a day of clouds and darkness. I will bring them out from the nations and gather them from the countries, and I will bring them into their own land. I will pasture them on the mountains of Israel, in the ravines and in all the settlements in the land. I will tend them in a good pasture, and the mountain heights of Israel will be their grazing land. There they will lie down in good grazing land, and there they will feed in a rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. I myself will tend my sheep and have them lie down, declares the Sovereign Lord. I will search for the lost and bring back the strays. I will bind up the injured and strengthen the weak, but the sleek and the strong I will destroy. I will shepherd the flock with justice.

1 Peter 5:1-4

To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings who also will share in the glory to be revealed: Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.

Ecclesiastes 4:8-12

There was a man all alone;
    he had neither son nor brother.
There was no end to his toil,
    yet his eyes were not content with his wealth.
“For whom am I toiling,” he asked,
    “and why am I depriving myself of enjoyment?”
This too is meaningless—
    a miserable business!

Two are better than one,
    because they have a good return for their labor:
If either of them falls down,
    one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls
    and has no one to help them up.
Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
    But how can one keep warm alone?
Though one may be overpowered,
    two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

Galatians 6:1, 2

Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.

April 2016 (Spiritual Vitality)

For intergenerational understanding, appreciation and faith-building

  • That believers of all ages throughout our Fellowship will relate meaningfully with brothers and sisters in Christ across generations.
  • That the homes of church families will be places where children and youth who do not know Jesus can be welcomed and introduced to the message of the gospel.
  • That children and youth will grow in their biblical understanding of respect for authority and love for their neighbour.
  • That adult believers of all ages will be intentional about understanding, encouraging and mentoring younger believers and modeling biblical faith.
  • For wisdom and effectiveness among leaders and teachers working with children and youth.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Romans 15:7

Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.

1 Corinthians 1:10

I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought.

Ephesians 6:1-4

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise—“so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”

Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

1 Timothy 4:12

Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.

Colossians 3:20, 21

Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.

Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.

Deuteronomy 6:6-9

These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.  Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.

May 2016 (Missional Vitality)

For authentic, passionate Pentecostal leadership and congregations

  • That our leaders and ministers will hunger for God’s presence and the Spirit’s work, gifts and expressions.
  • That they would walk in companionship with the Spirit and be open to all that Jesus promised the Spirit would provide.
  • For congregations to be increasingly filled with anticipation for the Spirit to reveal Himself and transform lives each time the family of God meets.
  • That God will increase our understanding of our need for continual dependence on Him, and we will begin to consciously “practise His presence.”

 PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Luke 4:14-21

Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. He was teaching in their synagogues, and everyone praised him.

He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
    because he has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
    and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
    to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

 Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

Ephesians 5:15-20

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.  Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Acts 3:19

Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.

Acts 1:7-8

He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Psalm 139:1-18

You have searched me, Lord,
    and you know me.
You know when I sit and when I rise;
    you perceive my thoughts from afar.
You discern my going out and my lying down;
    you are familiar with all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue
    you, Lord, know it completely.
You hem me in behind and before,
    and you lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too lofty for me to attain.

Where can I go from your Spirit?
    Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
    if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
    if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
    your right hand will hold me fast.
If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me
    and the light become night around me,”
even the darkness will not be dark to you;
    the night will shine like the day,
    for darkness is as light to you.

For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
    when I was made in the secret place,
    when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
    all the days ordained for me were written in your book
    before one of them came to be.
How precious to me are your thoughts, God!
    How vast is the sum of them!
Were I to count them,
    they would outnumber the grains of sand—
    when I awake, I am still with you.

June 2016 (Theological Vitality)

For God’s protection and help for our families

  • That God will help families to strengthen their marriages and family relationships, and to rebuild connections that have been broken.
  • That God’s Word will be the most important reference point for wisdom and direction as opportunities and challenges arise.
  • That parents and guardians will have godly wisdom in taking care of their responsibilities and making decisions.
  • That children will grow in discernment and in their desire to please God and be a blessing in their families.
  • That God will deliver and protect our families from harmful spiritual influences.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

1 Corinthians 13:4-8a

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails. 

Colossians 3:12-14

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

Psalm 119:105, 106

Your word is a lamp for my feet,
    a light on my path.
I have taken an oath and confirmed it,
    that I will follow your righteous laws.

James 1:5

If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

Proverbs 1:8

Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction
    and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.

Psalm 103:17, 18

But from everlasting to everlasting
    the Lord’s love is with those who fear him,
    and his righteousness with their children’s children—
with those who keep his covenant
    and remember to obey his precepts.

July 2016 (Missional Vitality)

For God’s glory to be revealed in our nation

  • That we would be thankful and appreciative of God’s kindness to our nation—and that He will continue to bless Canada with provision, protection and direction.
  • For wisdom, understanding, integrity and strength for our government leaders and judges at all levels—federal, provincial, and municipal.
  • That God will strengthen the faith of Christ-followers throughout Canada, and grant them boldness to share the gospel in word and deed wherever He has placed them.
  • That evangelical individuals and organizations will find favour as they seek opportunities to be godly influences in cities and communities across Canada.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

1 Chronicles 16:34

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.

1 Timothy 2:1-3

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior…

Isaiah 52:7

How beautiful on the mountains
    are the feet of those who bring good news,
who proclaim peace,
    who bring good tidings,
    who proclaim salvation,
who say to Zion,
    “Your God reigns!”

Matthew 10:16

I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.

August 2016 (Spiritual Vitality)

For Sabbath rest for the minds, bodies and spirits of both the strong and the weary

  • That believers everywhere will be consistent and intentional about building rest, reflection and unhurried time with God into our daily routines.
  • That we will become more intentional about protecting a time of weekly rest and worship.
  • That we will value our bodies as the temple of the Holy Spirit and allow the Lord to help us be good stewards of what He has given us, both spiritually and in practical ways, such as healthy eating and regular exercise.
  • That we will take the time to reflect on God’s work in our lives and in the world around us, and to listen to what He has in mind to do next.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Isaiah 30:15a

This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says:

“In repentance and rest is your salvation,
    in quietness and trust is your strength…”

Exodus 20:8-11

“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.”

Isaiah 58:13-14

“If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath
    and from doing as you please on my holy day,
if you call the Sabbath a delight
    and the Lord’s holy day honorable,
and if you honor it by not going your own way
    and not doing as you please or speaking idle words,
then you will find your joy in the Lord,
    and I will cause you to ride in triumph on the heights of the land
    and to feast on the inheritance of your father Jacob.”
For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.

Isaiah 43:19

See, I am doing a new thing!
    Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
    and streams in the wasteland.

September 2016 (Theological Vitality)

For effective youth and campus evangelization and discipleship

  • That Christians will systematically share and live out biblical principles with youth and young adults who can observe their faithful obedience closely.
  • That youth and young adults will be drawn by God’s Spirit to seek Him with all their hearts, and that they will find Him.
  • That young adults who have strayed away from their childhood faith will find opportunities to reconnect with God and His people on campus.
  • That loving communities of faith and meaningful discipleship will grow and flourish wherever God places Christian representatives to serve.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

2 Timothy 4:1-5

In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.

2 Timothy 2:14-15

Keep reminding God’s people of these things. Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen. Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

Jeremiah 29:11-13

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

Proverbs 27:17

 As iron sharpens iron,
    so one person sharpens another.

October 2016 (Spiritual Vitality)

For an unwavering focus on righteousness and justice

  • That we would increase in our understanding as a Pentecostal family of what it means to be one in mission together, demonstrating God’s love for humanity.
  • That we would embrace a high view of Scripture and live with moral and relational integrity while seeking transformation in our communities, our nation and our world.
  • That men, women and children throughout our Fellowship will have continued sharpened sensitivity and a meaningful response to both the spiritual and practical needs of those less fortunate in Canada and around the world.
  • That God will open up opportunities for the church to influence the public context through life and speech, affirming what is right and confronting what is wrong.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Acts 4:8-12, 29-31

Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them: “Rulers and elders of the people! If we are being called to account today for an act of kindness shown to a man who was lame and are being asked how he was healed, then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. Jesus is

“‘the stone you builders rejected,
    which has become the cornerstone.’

Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”

Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”

After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.

1 Peter 2:9-12

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul. Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.

Romans 12:3-8

For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.

Micah 6:6-8

With what shall I come before the Lord
    and bow down before the exalted God?
Shall I come before him with burnt offerings,
    with calves a year old?
Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams,
    with ten thousand rivers of olive oil?
Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression,
    the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?
He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
    And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
    and to walk humbly with your God.

James 1:26, 27

Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless. Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

November 2016 (Missional Vitality)

For God’s help, strength and deliverance for persecuted Christians

  • That God will strengthen, deliver and protect Christians being oppressed or attacked for their faith.
  • That the gospel will continue to spread in spite of opposition, and that even the hearts of persecutors will be changed.
  • For the restoration of homes and resources for those who have suffered loss as a result of discrimination or violence.
  • That Christians everywhere will be empowered by the Holy Spirit to be strong in the face of opposition and will share and live out their faith without fear.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

John 15:19

If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.

Matthew 5:44

But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.

2 Corinthians 4:8-10

We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.

Romans 12:17-21

Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary:

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
    if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

John 16:33

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

December 2016 (Theological Vitality)

For the true meaning of Christmas to be celebrated and declared

  • That God’s Spirit will lead Christians to learn more about the season of advent and to embrace its full meaning.
  • That we will be responsive to opportunities to share the truth about Christ and the meaning of advent with our neighbours, friends and families.
  • That our churches will be effective in sharing the message of Christ’s birth, life, death and resurrection, so that many hearts and lives will be changed this Christmas.
  • That we will recognize thoughtful ways to express God’s love to those without hope during this season and always.

PASSAGES TO PONDER:

Matthew 1:18-25

This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.

But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”

All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).

When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

Luke 2:1-20

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.)  And everyone went to their own town to register.

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.  An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
    and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

Isaiah 9:6

For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given,
    and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
    Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 61:1

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
    because the Lord has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
    to proclaim freedom for the captives
    and release from darkness for the prisoners…

1 John 3:18

Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.

JANUARY 2015 (Spiritual Vitality)


Because faith and love dispel fear…

  • Pray that this year we will each enter into a deeper love relationship with Christ that is vibrant, authentic and transformative.
  • Pray that we will be strengthened by the power of God’s Word, and have our minds and lives renewed by its truths.
  • Pray that we will regularly invest the time that is needed to connect with God through Bible reading, prayer, listening and meditation.
  • Pray that the Holy Spirit will quicken our love for God so much that we naturally have the need and desire to share this special relationship with others.

From God’s Word:

  • John 6:35 “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.”
  • Psalm 130:5 “I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I put my hope.”
  • Matthew 4:4 “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”
  • John 7:38 “Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”

FEBRUARY 2015 (Missional Vitality) 

Because Christ’s love changes lives… 

  • Pray for our hearts to be softened towards one another, so that we can give and receive forgiveness readily within our families, churches and communities.
  • Pray that God will help us to seek ways to bring reconciliation where there is estrangement, restoration where there is brokenness, and comfort where there is mourning.
  • Pray that God will present opportunities for the message of Christ’s love and forgiveness to be shared in all of our relationships in word and deed.

From God’s Word:

  • John 13:34-35 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
  • 2 Corinthians 5:16-20 “So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer.  Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.”
  • Matthew 5:14-16 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” 

1 John 3:18, 23 “Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth … And this is [God’s] command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us.”

MARCH 2015 (Theological Vitality)

Because the Word of God stands forever…

  • Pray that Christians will make it a life-long pursuit to develop a complete understanding of all of the Scriptures and how they apply to life in Christ individually, corporately, and in modern-day times.
  • Pray that we will each take the time to read God’s Word every day and that our understanding of God’s mind and heart will be opened.
  • Pray that pastors and church leaders everywhere will be diligent and faithful in imparting God’s truths to their congregations in word and deed.
  • As we celebrate Palm Sunday this month, pray that we will grow in our Scriptural understanding of the significance of Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem, and his subsequent suffering, crucifixion and resurrection.

From God’s Word:

  • Romans 15:4 “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.”
  • Psalm 25:4-5 “Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.”
  • 2 Timothy 2:15 “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.”

APRIL (Spiritual Vitality)

Because spiritual strength brings perseverance…

  • Pray that our understanding of the truth of Christ’s life, death and resurrection will be deepened.
  • Pray that the Holy Spirit will help us to regularly bring all of our circumstances to the Lord in prayer.
  • Pray that we would have the courage to continue standing in faith, trusting God with all that we have committed to Him in prayer.
  • Pray that we will be strengthened spiritually so that God can use us to bring hope this Easter and beyond to many who have not been reconciled to Him—men, women and especially children.

From God’s Word:

  • Philippians 3:10 “I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of His resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.”
  • Philippians 4:6 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”
  • Isaiah 26:3 “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.”
  • 2 Corinthians 2:14 “But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere.”

MAY (Missional Vitality) 

Because we need the power of the Holy Spirit…

  • Pray that the meaning of Pentecost—the outpouring of the Holy Spirit after Jesus’ resurrection and ascension—will become real for many Christians this month.
  • Pray that many will experience the baptism of the Holy Spirit for the first time and that many will experience a time of spiritual refreshing from the Lord.
  • Pray that believers will have the courage to go wherever God calls them to spread the gospel and to serve as tangible expressions of His love.
  • Pray that Christian ministries everywhere will be effective in bringing many people to faith in Christ.
  • Pray that our churches, pastors, Mission Canada and global workers will continue to find favour wherever they serve.

From God’s Word:

  • Luke 24:49 “I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”
  • Acts 3:19 “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord…”
  • Acts 1:8 “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
  • 2 Thessalonians 1:11 “With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith.”

JUNE (Theological Vitality)

Because the Word of God brings life… 

  • Pray that believers will have an increasing hunger and thirst for God’s Word and truth, and that their faith, understanding and wisdom would increase.
  • Pray that sound biblical teaching and resources will be available for all who seek them.
  • Pray that believers everywhere will have access to effective discipleship, so they will be able to persevere in their faith through testing, trials and temptations.
  • Pray that people professing faith in Christ will be strengthened in their ability to discern between true and false teaching.

From God’s Word:

  • Matthew 7:24-25 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.”
  • Ephesians 6:13 “Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.”
  • 1 John 4:1 “Dear friends,1 do not believe every spirit,2 but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.3 

JULY (Missional Vitality) 

Because God so loved the world…

  • Pray that God will continue to bless Canada and turn the hearts of men, women and children towards faith in His Son, Jesus Christ.
  • Pray that Mission Canada and global workers will continue to find open doors and that God will grant them great effectiveness in their spheres of influence.
  • Pray that they will continue to increase in number and impact wherever they are placed.
  • Pray that God will make our humanitarian efforts effective in helping people in desperate physical and spiritual need.

From God’s Word:

  • John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
  • Colossians 4:3 “And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains.”
  • James 2:15-16 “Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,’ but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?”

AUGUST (Spiritual Vitality)

Because the Presence of God brings rest and peace… 

  • Pray that this summer believers will make rest and spending time with God a priority.
  • Pray that we will be strengthened and renewed so that we can continue to do our work effectively, whatever God has called us to do.
  • Pray that we will make pleasing the Holy Spirit a priority and that the fruit of the Holy Spirit will be evident in our lives.
  • Pray that God’s presence in our lives and our faith in Christ will be infectious wherever we live, work, or go.

From God’s Word:

  • Isaiah 30:15a “This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says: “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength…”
  • Isaiah 40:31 “…but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”
  • Galatians 5:16,22 “So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature … the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”

SEPTEMBER (Theological Vitality) 

Because the fear of the Lord is the beginning of true wisdom…

  • Pray for the effectiveness of university campus ministries all across Canada.
  • Pray for the hearts and minds of university and college students across Canada to be transformed by God’s Word and by the Holy Spirit.
  • Pray for young people who commit to Christ to be discipled well and to have access to sound biblical doctrine and teaching.
  • Pray for students in our Bible colleges, that they will develop a strong foundation for their faith and ministries in the years to come.

From God’s Word: 

  • Acts 14:21-22 “They preached the gospel in that city and won a large number of disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch, strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith.”
  • Romans 12:2 “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
  • Proverbs 27:17 “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”

OCTOBER (Spiritual Vitality) 

Because God’s heart breaks for the poor and marginalized… 

  • Pray that our hearts will continue to be sensitized to the pain of those in need.
  • Pray that God will help us to remain committed to generous living that makes a difference.
  • Pray that God will intervene in nations where famine, disease and poverty are persistent challenges.
  • Pray that we would have the boldness to confront injustice and inequality in our world. 

From God’s Word:

  • 1 John 3:17 “If any one of you has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in you?”
  • Proverbs 19:17 “Those who are kind to the poor lend to the LORD, and he will reward them for what they have done.”
  • 1 Samuel 2:8a “He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap; he seats them with princes and has them inherit a throne of honor.”
  • Micah 6:8 “He has shown all you people what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” 

NOVEMBER (Missional Vitality) 

Because persecution against Christians has increased worldwide…

  • Pray that God will strengthen, deliver and protect Christians being oppressed or attacked for their faith.
  • Pray that the gospel will continue to spread in spite of opposition, and that even the hearts of persecutors will be changed.
  • Pray for the restoration of homes and resources for those who have suffered loss as a result of discrimination or attack.
  • Pray that Christians everywhere will be empowered by the Holy Spirit to be strong in the face of opposition and to share and live out their faith without fear. 

From God’s Word: 

  • John 15:19 “If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.”
  • Matthew 5:44 “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…”
  • 2 Corinthians 4:8-10 “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.” 

    DECEMBER (Theological Vitality)

    Because the true meaning of Christ’s birth needs to be proclaimed… 

    • Pray that our acknowledgement and understanding of the season of advent will increase wherever Christians are.
    • Pray that we will be sensitive to opportunities to share the truth about Christ and the meaning of advent with our neighbours, friends and families.
    • Pray that our churches will be effective in sharing the message of Christ’s birth, life, death and resurrection, so that many hearts and lives will be changed this Christmas.
    • Pray that we will recognize thoughtful ways to express God’s love to those without hope during this season and always.

    From God’s Word:

    • Isaiah 9:6 “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
    • Isaiah 61:1 “The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners…”

EDF calendar

January 2014


A PRAYER FOR … Renewal

Father,

Thank You for Your invitation to an eternal relationship with You through faith in Your Son, Jesus. Help me to continually deepen that relationship through the consistent and thorough study of Your Word.

Help me to become more grounded in it so that my faith is renewed this year, and so that I am strengthened by Your Spirit to face all that comes my way.

Help me to make spending time with You this year my highest priority, and help me to hear Your voice more clearly from day to day.

Thank You for Your promise that as I hunger and thirst for Your righteousness, I will be filled, and that as I study and obey Your commands, I will find true freedom. Thank You for all the ways in which You will reveal Yourself to me this year, and for all the good things You have in store.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen.

THEME VERSES (NIV)

Matthew 5:6

“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”

Matthew 4:4

“Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”

Psalm 119:41-42

“May your unfailing love come to me, O LORD, your salvation according to your promise;
then I will answer the one who taunts me, for I trust in your word.”
  

February 2014

A PRAYER FOR … Sharing God’s Love

Father,

Thank You for the amazing, unconditional love You have demonstrated to us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still powerless and outside of Your will. May the love You have for us be continually poured out in our hearts by Your Holy Spirit, so that we can then pour it outward into our families and communities.

Help me and my church family to grow in understanding of how to live out loving relationships, so that our example will draw others who have yet to know Christ. Restore broken families, Lord, and bring comfort to all those who are mourning.

Show us how to bring hope to the hurting and how to make a tangible difference in their circumstances. Thank You for Your compassion, care and faithfulness in our lives, and that You are working all things together for good for those who love You and are called according to Your purpose.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen.

THEME VERSES (NIV)

John 13:34-35

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” 

1 Corinthians 13:4-7

“Love is patient, love is kind … it is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

March 2014

A PRAYER FOR … Preparing for Easter

Father,

Thank You for loving the world so much that You gave Your only Son, that whoever believes in Him will not be condemned, but will have eternal life. Increase our understanding of what Christ has done for us, so that our lives become an even greater reflection of the hope to which You have called us.

May You reveal Yourself to many people for the first time this Easter, so they understand that Jesus’ life, death and resurrection applies to each of us personally—that every person matters to You, and that every person can receive Christ by faith.

Help me and my church family to be willing to lay down our lives for others, just as Christ did for us, so that many people can come to know Christ. Help us to make You and Your kingdom our first priority, so that You can use our lives as You desire.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen. 

THEME VERSES (NIV)

Ephesians 1:18-19

“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you …and his incomparably great power for us who believe…”

1 John 3:16

“This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers.”

April 2014

A PRAYER FOR … The Next Generation

Father,

Thank You for the tremendous blessing that all children represent in our lives. You have entrusted us with the responsibility of passing on our faith and Your Word to them, and we trust You to help us do this faithfully.

We pray especially for those between the ages of 4 and 14, who are most receptive to the gospel, that they will have many opportunities to hear it clearly explained. Lead them to respond by believing in Christ, confessing Him as Lord and Saviour.

Help them to believe and love Your Word as absolute truth, and to share their faith with boldness. Grant them the wisdom, courage and strength to resist temptations and anything that can draw their hearts and lives away from You, and to commit to Your plans for them completely.

Thank You for all You will accomplish through our children as they learn to live for You.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen. 

THEME VERSES (NIV)

Psalm 78:6-7

“… so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children. Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget his deeds but would keep his commands.”

Ephesians 5:15-16

“Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.”

May 2014

A PRAYER FOR … Valuing Relationships

Father,

We face so many pressures, distractions and barriers in our day. But all things are possible when we put our trust in You. Please open the way for more families throughout Canada to seek, find and build biblical family values into their lives and homes, so they can be stronger and give more of themselves and their time for each other’s benefit and well-being.

Help believers everywhere to find common ground with their neighbours, so that there will be many opportunities to share the love and hope Christ offers. May you ignite a spirit of selfless service and generosity in our hearts so that our zeal is for the advancement of your kingdom.

We thank You that because our times are in Your hands, You are more than able to help us to live out our faith in tangible ways in our homes, schools, workplaces, communities, and wherever else you place us.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen. 

THEME VERSES (NIV)

Ephesians 5:31-33

“‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’… However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” 

Ephesians 6:1-4

“Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right …Fathers,do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.”

June 2014

A PRAYER FOR … Experiencing Pentecost

Father,

We desire our lives to be marked by the presence and the power of the Holy Spirit. Come and revitalize our faith, so that we are empowered for witness to those who have yet to know Christ.

Help believers everywhere to learn more about the promise of the Father and to intentionally seek and receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Increase our understanding of the power of Pentecost for effective witness so that it becomes real in our faith communities across Canada and internationally.

Help us to see our nation as a mission field, and guide us in sharing our faith daily. Give us opportunities to speak Your Word boldly and to be Your hands and feet wherever we go.

May we be living examples of the power of Pentecost. May Your church grow and be strengthened in unity, purpose and power, and may Your wonders and miracles be seen worldwide.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen. 

THEME VERSES (NIV)

Acts 3:19

“Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.”

Acts 1:7-8

‘It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set … But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.’”

July 2014

A PRAYER FOR … Rest and Reflection

Father,

Thank You for being a constant presence in our lives—the only One who can give us lasting peace and renew our strength in a fast-paced, chaotic world. Remind believers everywhere of the importance of rest and reflection, and teach us how to be consistent and intentional about building rest, reflection and unhurried time with You into our daily routines.

Help us to recognize and resist unnecessary time pressures and distractions that can negatively impact our relationship with You and others. Increase our understanding and appreciation of the purpose of a Sabbath day, and help us to protect a time of weekly rest and worship.

Teach us how to value our bodies as the temple of the Holy Spirit—resting, eating healthy and exercising regularly—so that we can be good stewards of what You have given us and well prepared to live out Your plans and purposes for us.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen 

THEME VERSES (NIV)

Jeremiah 31:25

“I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint.”

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

“Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.”

August 2014

A PRAYER FOR … Leadership

Father,

We thank You for our leaders, and ask that You will grant them godly wisdom, strength and encouragement wherever they may be, and that You will use them for Your glory and purposes.

Increase their awareness of their need for Your presence and favour in everything they do. Help us as believers, both individually and corporately, to do our part to encourage and support those You have placed in government leadership.

And show us ways to support and encourage pastoral and ministry leaders in fulfilling the call You have placed on their lives. Help those You have called to ministry not to grow weary in doing good, but to persevere until You bring the promised rewards.

Provide our global and Mission Canada workers with all they need to be able to lead effectively and fruitfully wherever You have placed them. Thank You for upholding our leaders and for directing their paths.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen 

THEME VERSES (NIV)

1 Timothy 2:1-2a

“I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people—for kings and all those in authority ….” 

1 Thessalonians 5:12-13

“Now we ask you, brothers and sisters, to acknowledge those who work hard among you, who care for you in the Lord and who admonish you. Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other.” 

September 2014

INTENTIONAL DISCIPLESHIP

Father,

Thank You for the journey of faith that You’ve called us to. Help believers everywhere to heed Your call to be disciples who make disciples, intentionally helping each other to grow steadfast in our faith at all ages and stages of life, so that detours and pitfalls can be avoided along the way.

Help more youth and young adult believers entering university and college life to have opportunities for intentional discipleship, and to be a godly influence on those they meet on campus.

May You strengthen post-secondary students, protecting them from spiritual attack and temptation, and enabling them to share the Word boldly. Encourage and strengthen those called to lead campus ministries.

Grant our children, youth and young adults many opportunities to be influenced by godly parents and adults who will intentionally invest in their spiritual development through their lives and the example they set.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen 

THEME VERSES (NIV)

Acts 14:21-22

“They preached the gospel in that city and won a large number of disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch, strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith. ‘We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God,’ they said.”

Proverbs 27:17

“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”

October 2014

A PRAYER FOR … Those Less Fortunate

Father,

You have blessed us with an abundance of resources and relative freedom in our part of the world. Forgive us for relative apathy and insensitivity towards those who are much more vulnerable.

Increase our awareness of where needs exist and help us do all we can to care for the hungry, widows, orphans, the sick and the poor. Grant us greater courage to meet the needs of those we encounter who are most in need, and help believers everywhere to do everything possible to bring justice and relief to all who are oppressed and defenseless.

We ask for Your intervention in regions facing severe droughts and famines, and ask that You will make a way for sufficient food and water to reach those who need it most. Increase our gratitude for Your provision, protection and deliverance in our lives, and our desire to use it all for Your glory.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen 

THEME VERSES (NIV)

Luke 4:18-19

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free,to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” 

Psalm 9:18

“But the needy will not always be forgotten, nor the hope of the afflicted ever perish.”

November 2014

A PRAYER FOR … Persecuted Christians

Father,

Thank You for Your promise that You will be with us until the very end of this age. We pray for Your presence to comfort and encourage Christians around the world who are being persecuted for their faith, and that in spite of the darkness around them, the gospel will continue to spread and take root.

May You soften and change the hearts of those who are oppressing Your people, just as You did with the apostle Paul. We ask for a tremendous harvest of souls in every place where the gospel is being shared or lived out.

We pray for the eyes of people around persecuted believers to be opened, so that they will also begin to believe the gospel. Thank You that we can depend on You to help us and deliver us in times of trouble. Help us to keep looking to You to receive the help we need.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen 

THEME VERSES (NIV)

Romans 8:35-37

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? … No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”

Luke 21:17-18

“All men will hate you because of me. But not a hair of your head will perish. By standing firm you will gain life.”

December 2014

A PRAYER FOR … Sharing Christ                                                                                                                                                

Father,

Thank You for the gift of Your Son, Jesus, and for the understanding You have given believers of the wonder of Christ’s birth, life, death and resurrection. In the midst of all the traditions, celebrations and activities, we ask that You increase the desire of many more men, women and children to understand more about the true message and meaning of Christmas.

May You grant believers everywhere boldness, creativity and many opportunities to share Christ during this season, and may many receive Christ into their hearts and lives for the first time this Christmas. Open our eyes and grant us the courage to respond to practical needs around us in the name of Christ.

We ask that many hurting people will find comfort and true rest in Your presence, and encouragement from Your Word. Thank You for inviting us to partner with You in reaching others for Your glory.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen 

THEME VERSES (NIV)

2 Corinthians 5:19b-20

“And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.” 

1 John 3:17-18

“If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? … Let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.” 


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January 2013

PRAYER FOCUS 
For believers everywhere to become disciplined followers of Christ 

  • Pray that this year you will have a greater daily hunger and thirst for God and His Word.
  • Pray that believers will grow in their understanding of God’s Word and in their desire to be fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ.
  • Pray that barriers to sharing the gospel in Canada will be torn down and that believers will be bold in sharing their faith. 
  • Pray that the Holy Spirit will draw all those seeking truth and hope into a personal relationship with Christ.
  • Pray that believers’ lives will be marked by choices that will reflect Christ-like character and bring glory to God.

January Theme Scriptures

Matthew 5:6

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.

Matthew 4:4

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.

Psalm 119:41-48

41 May your unfailing love come to me, LORD, your salvation, according to your promise;
42 then I can answer anyone who taunts me, for I trust in your word.
43 Never take your word of truth from my mouth, for I have put my hope in your laws.
44 I will always obey your law, for ever and ever.
45 I will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts.
46 I will speak of your statutes before kings and will not be put to shame,
47 for I delight in your commands because I love them.
48 I reach out for your commands, which I love, that I may meditate on your decrees.

John 14:6 

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

 

February 2013

PRAYER FOCUS 

For Christ’s love to overflow in our hearts, homes, churches and communities 

  • Pray for God’s love to be continually poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit.
  • Pray that believers everywhere will grow in understanding of how to live out loving relationships.
  • Pray that our love for God and for one another will grow and be evident to those around us who are yet to know Christ.
  • Pray that husbands, wives and children will be forgiving and loving towards one another as Christ has been to us.
  • Pray that God will move us to bring hope in tangible ways to broken families and comfort to those mourning the loss of a loved one.

February Theme Scriptures

Romans 5:5-8

And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us

1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

John 13:34-35

34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

Colossians 3:12-17

12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace.And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

2 Corinthians 1:3-5

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ,so also our comfort abounds through Christ.

 

March 2013

PRAYER FOCUS 

For the magnitude of Christ’s sacrifice to be understood and reflected more in our lives 

  • Pray for the true meaning and significance of the life, death and resurrection of Christ to be revealed to many for the first time this Easter.
  • Pray that believers will grow in understanding of the power and the impact of the cross and the hope to which we are called.
  • Pray that as Christ sacrificed His life for us, we would be willing to lay down our lives for others.
  • Pray for believers everywhere to make seeking God and His kingdom their first priority, trusting that everything else will be added according to their need.
  • Pray for our lives to be continually transformed and used for God’s glory.

March Theme Scriptures

Acts 17:29-32

29 “Therefore since we are God’s offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone—an image made by human design and skill. 30 In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. 31 For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead.”32 When they heard about the resurrection of the dead, some of them sneered, but others said, “We want to hear you again on this subject.”

Ephesians 1:18-20

18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms,

1 John 3:16

16 This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.

Matthew 6:33-34

33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Ephesians 2:8-10

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

April 2013

PRAYER FOCUS

For The Next Generation to be reached for Christ and His purposes

  • Pray that young people, especially those between the ages of 4 and 14, will have many opportunities to hear the gospel clearly explained, and will believe in Christ and confess Him as their Lord and Saviour.
  • Pray that they will grow in their relationship with God and in His grace and knowledge.
  • Pray that the next generation would hold God’s Word as absolute truth and have great love for it.
  • Pray that they will have the wisdom, courage and strength to resist temptations and anything that can draw their hearts and lives away from God.
  • Pray that the next generation will be committed to living out God’s plans and purposes and will share their faith with boldness.

April Theme Scriptures

Romans 10:9-11

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. 11 As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.”

2 Peter 3:17-18

17 Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. 18 But grow in the graceand knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.

Psalm 19:7-11

The law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul. The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes. The fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever. The decrees of the Lord are firm, and all of them are righteous. 10 They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey, than honey from the honeycomb. 11 By them your servant is warned; in keeping them there is great reward.

Psalm 78:6-7

so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children. Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget his deeds but would keep his commands.

Ephesians 5:15-17

15 Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.

May 2013

PRAYER FOCUS

For our lives to be marked by the presence and the power of the Holy Spirit

  • Pray that the Holy Spirit will revitalize the faith of believers everywhere.
  • Pray that more believers will intentionally seek and receive the promise of the Father.
  • Pray that believers will speak the Word of God boldly and be empowered to be His witnesses, His hands and His feet wherever they are.
  • Pray that the understanding of the power of Pentecost for empowered and effective witness will become real in our faith communities across Canada and internationally.
  • Pray that the church of Jesus Christ will grow and be strengthened in unity, purpose and power, and that God’s wonders and miracles would be seen worldwide. 

May Theme Scriptures

Acts 3:19

19 Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.

Acts 1:4-8

On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with[a] water, but in a few days you will be baptized with[b] the Holy Spirit.” Then they gathered around him and asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Acts 4:23-31

23 On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Sovereign Lord,” they said, “you made the heavens and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. 25 You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David:

“‘Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? 26 The kings of the earth rise up and the rulers band together against the Lord and against his anointed one.[a][b]

27 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. 28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. 29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” 31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.

Acts 2:42-47

42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles.44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

June 2013

PRAYER FOCUS

For strengthened relationships in families and communities

  • Pray that God will open the way for more Canadian families to seek, find and build biblical family values into their lives and homes.
  • Pray that family members will desire to give more of themselves and their time for each other’s benefit and wellbeing.
  • Pray that God will help believers everywhere to find common ground with their neighbours, so that there will be many opportunities to share the hope they have in Christ.
  • Pray for God to ignite a spirit of selfless service and generosity of time and resources so that our lives will be more focused on kingdom purposes. 

June Theme Scriptures

Ephesians 5:22-33

22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. 25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing[a] her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himselfas a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”[b] 32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

Ephesians 6:1-4

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”[aFathers,[b] do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

Colossians 3:18-24

18 Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. 19 Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them. 20 Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord. 21 Fathers,[a] do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged. 22 Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything; and do it, not only when their eye is on you and to curry their favor, but with sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord. 23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

1 Corinthians 9:22-23

22 To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. 23 I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.

1 Peter 4:7-11 

The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray. Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 11 If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.

July 2013

PRAYER FOCUS

For believers to be reminded of the importance of rest and reflection

  • Pray that believers everywhere will be consistent and intentional about building rest, reflection and unhurried time with God into our daily routines.
  • Pray that we will be able to recognize and resist unnecessary time pressures and distractions that can negatively impact our relationship with God and others.
  • Pray that we will grow in our understanding and appreciation of the purpose of a Sabbath day and that we will become more intentional about protecting a time of weekly rest and worship.
  • Pray that we will value our bodies as the temple of the Holy Spirit and allow the Lord to help us be good stewards of what He has given us, both spiritually and in practical ways, such as healthy eating and regular exercise.
  • Pray that we will take the time to reflect on God’s work in our lives and in the world around us, and to listen to what He has in mind to do next. 

July Theme Scriptures

Isaiah 30:15

15 This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says: “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength, but you would have none of it.

Exodus 20:8-11

“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work,10 but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. 11 For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lordblessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.

Isaiah 58:13-14

13 “If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath and from doing as you please on my holy day, if you call the Sabbath a delight and the Lord’s holy day honorable, and if you honor it by not going your own way and not doing as you please or speaking idle words,14 then you will find your joy in the Lord, and I will cause you to ride in triumph on the heights of the land and to feast on the inheritance of your father Jacob.” For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

19 Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.

Isaiah 43:19

See, I am doing a new thing!  Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.

August 2013

PRAYER FOCUS

For godly wisdom, strength and encouragement for all those in leadership

  • Pray that God will guide the decisions and lives of all those appointed to leadership positions, wherever they may be, that they would be used for His glory and purposes.
  • Pray that the church will do its part to encourage and support those God has placed in government leadership.
  • Pray that we will learn how to continually support and encourage pastoral and ministry leaders in fulfilling the calling God has placed on their lives.
  • Pray that none of those called to lead and minister will grow weary in doing good, but will persevere until God brings the promised rewards.
  • Pray for our PAOC international and Mission Canada workers, that they will be equipped to lead effectively and fruitfully wherever God has placed them. 

August Theme Scriptures

1 Timothy 2:1-4

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.

Proverbs 21:1

In the Lord’s hand the king’s heart is a stream of water that he channels toward all who please him

Hebrews 13:17

Have confidence in your leaders and submit to their authority, because they keep watch over you as those who must give an account. Do this so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no benefit to you.

1 Thessalonians 5:12-13

12 Now we ask you, brothers and sisters, to acknowledge those who work hard among you, who care for you in the Lord and who admonish you. 13 Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other.

Galatians 6:9-10 

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. 10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

September 2013

PRAYER FOCUS

For students on university and college campuses to encounter Christ and live for Him 

  • Pray that more youth and young adult believers entering university and college life will have opportunities for intentional discipleship to help them stay strong in their faith.
  • Pray that post-secondary students will be strengthened in their relationship with God and each other, and protected from spiritual attack and temptation.
  • Pray for God to protect university campuses everywhere from danger.
  • Pray that God will soften the hearts of those on campuses who are still in darkness, so that they will be open to the message of the gospel.
  • Pray that Christian students will be well equipped to share the Word of God and the reasons for their faith, answering questions or opposing arguments with wisdom.
  • Pray for God to strengthen, encourage and bless the work of campus ministry leaders dedicated to reaching and discipling post-secondary students, both in Canada and around the globe. 

September Theme Scriptures

Acts 14:21-22

21 They preached the gospel in that city and won a large number of disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch, 22 strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith. “We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God,” they said.

Proverbs 27:17

As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.

John 4:35-38

35 Don’t you have a saying, ‘It’s still four months until harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest. 36 Even now the one who reaps draws a wage and harvests a crop for eternal life, so that the sower and the reaper may be glad together. 37 Thus the saying ‘One sows and another reaps’ is true. 38 I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor.”

2 Timothy 2:14-17

14 Keep reminding God’s people of these things. Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen. 15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. 16 Avoid godless chatter, because those who indulge in it will become more and more ungodly.17 Their teaching will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus…

2 Corinthians 9:6 

Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.

October 2013

PRAYER FOCUS 

For increased sensitivity and response to hunger and injustice in our world

  • Pray that believers will have an increased sense of God’s desire to care for the hungry and the vulnerable—widows, orphans, the sick and the poor.
  • Pray that we would have greater courage to meet the needs of those we encounter who are most in need, as God enables us.
  • Pray that more believers will be willing to do their part to bring about justice and relief for all who are oppressed and defenseless.
  • Pray that God will intervene in regions facing debilitating droughts and famines, and make a way for sufficient food and water to reach those who need it most.
  • Pray for hearts of increased gratitude to God for His provision, protection and deliverance in our lives.

October Theme Scriptures

Isaiah 58:6-12

“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter—when you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness[a] will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard. Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I. “If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, 10 and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. 11 The Lord will guide you always;     he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail. 12 Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins and will raise up the age-old foundations; you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets with Dwellings.

Luke 4:18-19

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free,19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”[a]

Psalm 146:5-10

Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord their God. He is the Maker of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them— he remains faithful forever.He upholds the cause of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The Lord sets prisoners free,the Lord gives sight to the blind, the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down, the Lord loves the righteous. The Lord watches over the foreigner and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but he frustrates the ways of the wicked. 10 The Lord reigns forever, your God, O Zion, for all generations. Praise the Lord.

Psalm 9:7-18

The Lord reigns forever; he has established his throne for judgment. He rules the world in righteousness and judges the peoples with equity.The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.10 Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.11 Sing the praises of the Lord, enthroned in Zion; proclaim among the nations what he has done.12 For he who avenges blood remembers; he does not ignore the cries of the afflicted.13 Lord, see how my enemies persecute me! Have mercy and lift me up from the gates of death,14 that I may declare your praises in the gates of Daughter Zion, and there rejoice in your salvation.15 The nations have fallen into the pit they have dug; their feet are caught in the net they have hidden.16 The Lord is known by his acts of justice; the wicked are ensnared by the work of their hands.[a]17 The wicked go down to the realm of the dead, all the nations that forget God.18 But God will never forget the needy; the hope of the afflicted will never perish.

Psalm 10:14

But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted; you consider their grief and take it in hand. The victims commit themselves to you; you are the helper of the fatherless.

Psalm 50:23

Those who sacrifice thank offerings honor me, and to the blameless[a] I will show my salvation.

November 2013

PRAYER FOCUS

For those needing hope and the sense of Christ’s presence in times of trouble

  • Pray for God’s presence to comfort and encourage persecuted Christians around the world.
  • Pray that the gospel will continue to spread and take root in the communities and nations where the persecuted live, including in the hearts of those who are oppressing them.
  • Pray for a tremendous harvest of souls in every place where the gospel is being shared or lived out.
  • Pray for those mourning the loss or separation of loved ones through military service.
  • Pray for God’s comfort for surviving veterans and all who have experienced the painful memories of war and conflict. 

November Theme Scriptures

Romans 8:35-39

35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”[a]37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[b] neither the present nor the future,nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Luke 21:10-19

10 Then he said to them: “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. 11 There will be great earthquakes, famines and pestilences in various places, and fearful events and great signs from heaven.12 “But before all this, they will seize you and persecute you. They will hand you over to synagogues and put you in prison, and you will be brought before kings and governors, and all on account of my name. 13 And so you will bear testimony to me. 14 But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. 15 For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict. 16 You will be betrayed even by parents, brothers and sisters, relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death. 17 Everyone will hate you because of me.18 But not a hair of your head will perish. 19 Stand firm, and you will win life.

John 6:44

No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day.

Psalm 34:18

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Isaiah 40:27-31 

Why do you complain, Jacob?  Why do you say, Israel, “My way is hidden from the Lord; my cause is disregarded by my God”? 28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. 29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. 30 Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; 31 but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

December 2013

PRAYER FOCUS

For many hearts to be opened to the true message and meaning of Christmas 

  • Pray for God to give men, women and children without Christ a desire to understand the true meaning behind Christmas, its traditions, and the reason for celebration.
  • Pray for believers to have boldness, creativity and many opportunities to share the true meaning of Christmas with those they encounter.
  • Pray that many will receive Christ into their hearts and lives for the first time this Christmas.
  • Pray for abundant opportunities and resources for believers to help meet the practical needs of those around them in the name of Christ.
  • Pray that this Christmas many hurting people will find comfort and true rest in the presence of Christ and will receive encouragement from His Word. 

December Theme Scriptures

Luke 24:45

Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures.

2 Corinthians 5:15-21

15 And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin[b] for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

Isaiah 52:7

How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings,
who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns”

1 John 3:17-18

17 If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them,how can the love of God be in that person? 18 Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.

Psalm 91:1-2

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.[aI will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”

All Scripture verses have been taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW LIVING TRANSLATION (NLT): Scriptures taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW LIVING TRANSLATION, Copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Prior to 2018. All scriptures are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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