6 DAY DEVOTION GUIDE FOR FASTING & PRAYER WEEK

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1 6 DAY DEVOTION GUIDE FOR FASTING & PRAYER WEEK There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. Ephesians 4:4-6 Paul wrote those beautiful words as a challenge to the church in Ephesus to be united as ONE. He knew the power of a church fully committed to Christ, fully committed to each other and fully committed to the mission could turn the world right side up. There is tremendous strength when everyone abandons their desires and bands together as ONE to accomplish more than they ever could alone. So, over the next few days, we are praying and fasting as we seek an answer to our prayers: 1) God, what do You want me to do to expand your Kingdom and make a difference with my life? and 2) God, what do You want us to do to as Your church to expand Your Kingdom and make a difference with this ministry? As we seek those answers we are going to read through the book of Ephesians one chapter a day and see the beauty of a church unified as ONE. Each day, you can choose to do as much or as little as you want of the daily study. To get the most out of it I would encourage you to complete all five elements. I know you will be encouraged by the study and God will reveal himself to you in a very real way. Page 1 of 7

2 MONDAY The Apostle Paul had much invested in the church in Ephesus. For three years Paul lived and worked there, providing a strong foundation for the church. Paul wrote this letter for churches across the region. He wasn t confronting a crisis, rather, he used this occasion to provide Christ-followers with a basic overview of the Christian life and challenge them to live with a combination of faith and power. Or more accurately, power released by faith. Read: Ephesians 1 1. What are some spiritual blessings that we have through Jesus? 2. What is special about the fact that God deliberately chooses us as his people? 3. Why does having faith make a difference in our lives? 4. What about your salvation causes you to actively trust God? In what areas of your life? 5. Describe God s relationship to his church, as Paul states it in chapter 1? Thank you, God, for choosing us. May we be spurred on by your love to do great works, yet never substitute those works for your amazing grace. May we always hear your voice. Keep us amazed and mesmerized by what you have done for us. Amen. What situations will I face more effectively today if I remember that I am chosen and valued by God? Page 2 of 7

3 TUESDAY Having laid the foundation of our life in Christ and living through his resurrection power, Paul dug into the theme of salvation, recapping the merciful means that God uses to bring us into his family. But, in Ephesus, there was an uneasy truce between the Jews and the Gentiles. The Gospel created a new unexpected tension. Paul constantly taught that, in Christ, people from very different backgrounds could be one. Read: Ephesians 2 1. What specific changes have occurred because of Christ s presence in your life? 2. Explain the relationship to the gift of salvation. 3. How can you show the great riches of God s grace? 4. Christ s death and resurrection changed the way we approach God - from his creatures to his children. Describe the difference. 5.What are the benefits that you have discovered in belonging to God s family? Father, as we set about the task of being your people, we pray that you ll help us. May we glorify your name. May we be open-minded. May we be sincere. May we be willing to grow and change. We thank you for the honor of being part of your family. Amen. What are my privileges and responsibilities in belonging to God s family? Page 3 of 7

4 WEDNESDAY It s amazing how Paul spoke so confidently of the oneness of believers in Jesus. One of the primary reasons for his assurance was his own training in the Old Testament scriptures. He realized that the gospel message, with its inclusion of the Gentiles, has always been hiding in plain sight. But it took Jesus to finally reveal it to the world. Read: Ephesians 3 1. Why did Paul describe God s plan to offer all people salvation as a secret? 2. Why do you think Paul described himself as the least important of all God s people? 3. What are some examples in your everyday world of things that you use or benefit from, even though you do not understand them? 4. In what ways can we know Christ s love, even thought we don t understand it? 5. How can we be sure God s power, rather than our own strength, is working through us? Father, we look at your plan and see that it s all based on your love, not on our performance. Help me to understand that. Teach me to be captivated by your love. Allow us to be overwhelmed by your grace. Remind us to live grateful lives and to be amazed at such mercy that forgives us time and time again. Amen. How can I be more like Christ in the way I show love to the people around me? Page 4 of 7

5 THURSDAY Paul used written messages to continue his work as an apostle while he was in prison. While in prison, Paul was still allowed visitors and used these messengers to maximize his ministry throughout the Roman world. As he does in most of his letters, Paul devoted the first half of his letter to doctrinal teaching and the second half to application. He s basically saying that if you agree with what I just told you, the following actions will be required. Read: Ephesians 4 1. How would you describe the life God calls you to live? 2. List some ways we can accept one another and bear with one another in love. 3. The purpose of your gifts is to grow to maturity in Christ. In what ways do the gifts you have identified help you do that? 4. In what ways should we be using our gifts to reach others for Christ? 5. What is the difference between the old self and the new self? Father, how holy and great is your promise. You ve been so good to me and have given so many gifts to me. Renew my vision: help me to see heaven. Help me to be busy about the right business: the business of serving you. Please transform me into your likeness and do not let me be conformed to the world s likeness. Teach me to speak with your voice and love with your love. How can I use my gifts today for God s glory? Page 5 of 7

6 FRIDAY The analogy of walking is a good one for the Christian life. Paul encouraged the Ephesians to walk worthy of Christ, honoring him in what they did and did not do. Paul expands on that analogy, showing how God s children are to walk in love, light and wisdom. Read: Ephesians 5 1. Compare and contrast a life that is full of darkness and a life that is full of light. 2. What are some signs of a life lived apart from God? 3. What makes it hard to yield to someone else s wants and needs instead of your own? 4. Paul compares loving the church to a husband loving his wife. How should we love the church in light of that analogy? 5. What does it mean to yield to someone else? God, you ve given us such a great promise, the promise of salvation. Forgive us, Father, when we sometimes put more hope in the things of this earth than in the incredible promises of your heaven. Keep the evil one away from me. Let my home be a testimony of your love for me. When people look inside, let them see how you have loved the world. Amen. In what ways can I bend more this week to mend a relationship? Page 6 of 7

7 SATURDAY In closing, Paul reminded his readers that a very real battle was waging against a very real enemy. He wanted to equip them for a life of adventure in God s service. Reciting a list of spiritual resources, he spelled out the armor God has issued to all believers in Christ. Read: Ephesians 6 1. What is the purpose of a soldier s armor? 2. List some of the devil s tricks that this passage might be referring to? 3. In what ways does right living protect us? 4. List some ways a life of prayer will benefit us in spiritual warfare? 5. In what ways is the Word of God like a sword? What would it take for you to feel comfortable going into battle with this sword? We give you praise. We honor and glorify your name. You truly are the Kings of kings and the Lord of lords. We thank you and worship you and will follow you forever and ever. Amen. What has God revealed to you during your week of prayer and fasting? Page 7 of 7

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