day 1 - Let us pray
Thanksgiving is approaching. It’s just 3 weeks away. On Thanksgiving we celebrate with a feast and give thanks for all God has done and given us. This year, as Thanksgiving approaches, I would like to ask you to join with me in a season of prayer and fasting leading up to the day of feasting and thanksgiving.
Over the next 21 days I encourage you to set aside some time each day for prayer. Pray for your needs, concerns, and praises as well as the for Faith Lutheran Church. Pray for the people of Faith and pray for our ministry as a church. Pray also for people of Wesley Chapel, especially those who do not yet know Jesus as their savior.
You may also choose to fast on some of the days. While there are some examples of fasts that lasted a full day or even several days, the typical fast people observed in the Bible is one where they would eat their morning meal and then not consume food during the day until they broke their fast with their evening meal.
The purpose of the fast is to discipline and restrain your body from the things of the flesh while focusing on prayer and God’s Word. This is done as a means of humbling the flesh and curbing the desires of the flesh.
As you fast, if you choose to do so, let the feelings of hunger you experience remind you to pray. Spend the time you would normally spend eating by reading God’s Word and meditating on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Through His Word, the Lord will bless and nourish you.
“Then shall your light break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up speedily; your righteousness shall go before you; the glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard. Then you shall call, and the LORD will answer; you shall cry, and He will say, ‘Here I am’ ” (Is 58:8–9).
I come to you today like a child boldly coming to their Father for my provision, comfort, strength, and care. Hear my prayer and you have promised to do. I begin by confessing my sins and seeking your mercy through Jesus Christ.
(confess any sins on your heart)
Lord, you say that if we confess our sins, you will forgive us. I trust in your promises.
The Lord’s Prayer:
Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name,
Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us;
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever.
Heavenly Father, today I lift up myself and those involved with Faith Lutheran Church as we begin this season of prayer and fasting. Draw us to you each day in prayer. Help us to to be faithful in our prayers. Teach us to pray. Guide our prayers. May prayer become to our souls like breathing is for our bodies.
Remind us every day that you are our strength and our refuge, that we would call out to you in prayer every day of our lives. You are the giver of all good things. You sustain us and all creation. So, we come to the door and knock. We ask for your grace and your mercy. We seek your face.
Hear our prayers, oh Lord. Bless us.
(In your own words, pray for your prayer life and the prayer lives of the members of Faith)
The Psalms have long been considered the prayer book of the Bible and have been used as prayers by countless Christians over the centuries. So, we join them in this practice and pray a Psalm.
1 You, God, are my God,
earnestly I seek you;
I thirst for you,
my whole being longs for you,
in a dry and parched land
where there is no water.
2 I have seen you in the sanctuary
and beheld your power and your glory.
3 Because your love is better than life,
my lips will glorify you.
4 I will praise you as long as I live,
and in your name I will lift up my hands.
5 I will be fully satisfied as with the richest of foods;
with singing lips my mouth will praise you.
6 On my bed I remember you;
I think of you through the watches of the night.
7 Because you are my help,
I sing in the shadow of your wings.
8 I cling to you;
your right hand upholds me.
9 Those who want to kill me will be destroyed;
they will go down to the depths of the earth.
10 They will be given over to the sword
and become food for jackals.
11 But the king will rejoice in God;
all who swear by God will glory in him,
while the mouths of liars will be silenced.
If you would like to pray for other things, you can do so at this point.
Conclude your time of prayer with either Luther’s morning or evening prayer, depending on what time of day it is.
Luther’s Morning Prayer:
I thank you, my Heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, Your dear Son, that You have kept me this night from all harm and danger; and I pray that You would keep me this day also from sin and every evil, that all my doings and life may please You. For into Your hands I commend myself, my body and soul, and all things. Let Your holy angel be with me, that the evil foe may have no power over me. Amen.
Luther’s Evening Prayer:
I thank You, my heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, Your dear Son, that You have graciously kept me this day; and I pray You to forgive me all my sins where I have done wrong, and graciously keep me this night. For into Your hands I commend myself, my body and soul, and all things. Let Your holy angel be with me, that the wicked foe may have no power over me. Amen.
In Christ’s Service,