Welcome to the October 2020 Prayer Vigil!
How wonderful that the Lord has taught us how to connect with Him through the simple yet profound practice of prayer. Choosing to spend time in prayer with the Lord, our Creator, Father, Savior, is among the most valuable and precious ways to get to know our God. May we treasure the following time with Him in quiet meditation and deep communion.
At the start of our time with Him in prayer, we need to unload before Him the worldly burdens that cover us.
The burden of our worldly cares - Ask the Lord to quiet your thoughts and not follow in the ways of Martha (Luke 10: 40, 41).
“And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.” (Luke 12:29-30)
The burden of our self-centeredness and self-will - Ask the Lord to give us a humble and receptive heart so that we do not try to master our thoughts, rather, we give up our own will, allowing the Holy Spirit to guide us through our prayers.
“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.” (Romans 8:26)
”But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit.” (Jude 1:20)
The burden of an unthankful heart – If we come to the Lord perfunctorily and not out of pure joy, thankfulness and love, we are blind to the Lord’s love for us. Our God is a God of Love! If we are blind to the love of the Lord, how then can we possibly draw close to Him, receive His grace, hear his calling or be one with him? “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-17). Therefore, ask the Lord to restore our hearts to Him with thankfulness and love, through worship and adoration. “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” (Col. 2:6, 7).
“Praise the Lord, all you nations; extol Him, all you peoples. For great is His love towards us, and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever. Praise the Lord.” (Psalm 117)
The burden of unconfessed sin – Our God is pure and holy; and sin, more than anything else, separates us from our Lord. “But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.” (Isaiah 59:2). “This is the message we have heard from Him and declare to you: God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with Him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” (1 John 1:5-8). Prayer is a time of fellowship with the Lord. Ask the Lord to convict us of our sins. Humble ourselves and allow Him to lead us through confession and repentance, so that we can find His mercy working through us to restore our relationship with Him.
“He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them find mercy.” (Proverbs 28:13)
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)
“Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.” (Psalm 51:10-12)
Pray now in quietness; let’s clear our minds, empty ourselves of distracting thoughts, seek Him in silence, and wait for the Lord to speak to us.
Then, read…John 14:20 and John 15:5.
As the Holy Spirit fills us, re-connect with the Lord deeply, and remain in His love as He refreshes you and renews you.
Let the Holy Spirit transform us through His Love…
“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in His love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:9-13)
Therefore, in obeying His commands, we are in His love, and through His joy in us, then our JOY may be complete. We choose to obey His command to love each other just as the Lord loves us.
Pray then that His love, which completes us in JOY, will transform and move our hearts fully to love each other just as Christ did by laying down His life for us.
What is our personal Act of Love? How have we obeyed the Lord in love?
“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.” (Matthew 25:35-36).
Whether it is through worship, ministry or missionary work, through giving or service, may we follow in the Lord’s example, may we act out of love and joy. Let’s pray now for all the work, ministries, missionary efforts that our church members and leadership are engaged in. May our prayers now be lifted up as an expression of love.
Pray for :
- Holiness in each of our lives, through the Holy Spirit, that we may be witnesses to the world around us for the gospel of Jesus Christ - to our neighbour next door, our colleagues at work, our family members here in Hong Kong or abroad, through our worship and sermons on YouTube, our Small Community Groups and Life Groups, fellowship gatherings, even though they have to be conducted online via Zoom.
- The participants in the Alpha Course which is being held each Monday from 7:30pm to 9:30pm via Zoom. Pray for changed lives through the presentations and discussions, and for more seekers to join; For the Youth Alpha Course which is being organized by Carlos and Hannah.
- Pastor Will and the deacons, John, Frederick, Kenneth and Samuel, as they diligently lead the church and minister to its members; Pray for the Lord to grant them wisdom, strength, patience and unity in the Spirit; Pray for their families also.
- Ministry leaders and workers, especially Carlos, Hannah and Hanson for our youths and young adults; Analie, Jackline and Anny for the children; For Heather who will be leaving the children’s ministry as she will return to Canada; For our worship and media teams as they work week after week to make worship possible at IBC; For Fiona and Betty who coordinate the ladies’ fellowship; For mothers in prayer; For our men’s ministry.
- Our families, children and young people in the start of a new school year amid COVID-19 and the changing environment.
- Lena Lam, giving thanks to the Lord for the remarkable result of her brain surgery; For Beatrice as the Lord continues to sustain her; For the Lord’s care and healing for Y.M. Chen, Veronica Tso, Harold Lau, Samantha, Uncle Ip, and James Paul in India.
- The missionaries who serve at IBC and abroad; For Kaushic and Dang and their children in the Philippines; For IBC’s mission partners – Hong Kong Kun Sun Association, The Care and Share Homely Shelter, Kolkata Christian Fellowship in India, and others.
- The Lord’s protection for those who love Him during this COVID-19 pandemic so that the gospel will continue to be preached throughout the world.
Let us go and live and bear witness to the Love of the Lord, and in complete unity, let us rejoice in being called disciples of Christ. (Colossians 3:17): “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.”
[This prayer guide was prepared based on a 2007 prayer guide by May Wong]