Day 3 – Longing - 24-7 Prayer International

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    Thy Kingdom Come
    Thy Kingdom Come: Episode 3

    Day 3 – Longing

    Today is Saturday the 28th of May, and this week we are joining with millions of Christians around the world who are participating in the global prayer movement, Thy Kingdom Come.

    In particular, we are including insights from the Most Revd Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury.

    Pause

    As I enter prayer now, I pause to be still; to breathe slowly, to re-centre my scattered senses upon the presence of God.

    Pause and pray

    Prayer of Approach

    Creator God, who formed humanity from dust, breathe in me again. Revive me and sanctify me by the power of Your Spirit. Set my heart on fire with the good news of Your gospel.

    Rejoice and Reflect

    I choose to rejoice in God’s power and glory today, joining with the ancient praise of all God’s people in the words of Psalm 63…

    O God, you are my God;
        I earnestly search for you.
    My soul thirsts for you;
        my whole body longs for you
    in this parched and weary land
        where there is no water.
    I have seen you in your sanctuary
        and gazed upon your power and glory.
    Your unfailing love is better than life itself.

    Psalm 63:1-3a (NLT)
    Pause and pray

    I am continuing to reflect on the Apostle Peter’s first letter, which was written to persecuted believers living across the region of Asia Minor. Peter reassures them that the suffering they are facing will produce faith, and they will receive salvation.

    Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of the Messiah and the glories that would follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things.

    1 Peter 1:10-12 (NIVUK)

    ‘Every single person seeks meaning for their life. All of us go through life searching for something. Perhaps we long to be loved, or accepted, or seen for who we really are. Maybe we yearn to understand who we are ourselves, and why we’re here on this Earth. We desire to be closer to our God and creator, even if we aren’t aware of it. We have this desire for meaning because this is how God has made us. And it is only his meaning which fulfils our searching. “You have made us O Lord for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in you,” as St Augustine famously put it.’*

    Ask

    Peter writes that the prophets searched intently for Jesus’ coming, and that the angels long to fully understand our salvation.

    What am I searching for in this season of my life? What am I longing for?

    Pause and pray

    Thinking about the five friends who don’t yet know Jesus that I have been praying for this week, what are they searching and longing for?

    Jesus, please give me the names of five people who don’t know You; friends and Loving Father, I ask You to light their path. Help them to find You, even if they’re not fully aware that, ultimately, You are the One that they are looking for.

    Pause and pray

    Yield

    As I return to the passage, I open my ears to hear Your word, and my heart to yield to Your will once again.

    Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of the Messiah and the glories that would follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things.

    1 Peter 1:10-12 (NIVUK)

    For centuries, God’s people had searched high and low for the Messiah, even though they weren’t sure what they were looking for. And when Jesus arrived, they still weren’t sure. Philip, one of Jesus’ followers, even asked him one day, ‘Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.’ Jesus replied, ‘Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me?’ (John 14:8, 10a NIVUK). Everything that I am searching and longing for in God, I find in Jesus Christ.

    Pause and pray

    Yielding Prayer

    I use Augustine’s prayer as my own prayer of yielding today…

    You have made me, O Lord, for yourself, and my heart is restless until it finds its rest in you.

    Yielding Promise

    And now, as I prepare to take this time of prayer into the coming day, the Lord who loves me says in Philippians that:

    I will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything I can understand. His peace will guard my heart and mind as I live in Christ Jesus.

    Philippians 4:7 (NLT) (Adapted into the first person)

    Closing Prayer

    Father, help me to live this day to the full, 
     being true to You, in every way.
    Jesus, help me to give myself away to others, 
     being kind to everyone I meet. 
    Spirit, help me to love the lost,
    proclaiming Christ in all I do and say. 
    Amen.

    *Archbishop Justin Welby, Thy Kingdom Come: Novena, Reflections on 1 Peter, (London: Church House Publishing 2022), Day 2, p.8

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