16 This is what the Lord says--
he who made a way through the sea,
a path through the mighty waters,
17 who drew out the chariots and horses,
the army and reinforcements together,
and they lay there, never to rise again,
extinguished, snuffed out like a wick:
18 “Forget the former things;
do not dwell on the past.
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.
--- Isaiah 43:16-19
“Forget the former things”. Don’t live in the past. We often tell each other to leave the past behind when the bygone days are full of heartache and gloom. But here in Isaiah 43, God tells Israel that it is time to leave behind the great glories of their past. God calls to their mind the time he parted the Red Sea for them, and then says: “Forget about that”. And then: “See, I am doing a new thing”.
It is with that spirit that I want us to enter 40 Days of Prayer. I have been the minister here at Morrison Hill Christian Church for many years. I have lots of memories, almost all of them good. You probably do too.
But I think it’s time to “forget the former things” so that God can do something new. After all, some of the things we used to do, things we have always done (and the way we’ve done them) may have outlived their usefulness. To paraphrase David Platt in his book Radical, if we all just landed here as missionaries and laid out from scratch our best plan to reach this community for Christ, we probably wouldn’t come up with MHCC just as it is. (Don’t feel bad, though. This becomes true of most churches over time).
So I want us to pray about how God might reshape us and remake us into the most effective church we can be - by HIS definition alone.
To that end, we offer this prayer guide. It will contain content for each of the 40 days from Wednesday, February 21 through Easter Sunday, April 1. Some days contain prayers by MHCC people. Other days simply offer some suggestions.
We ask that you spend some of your prayer time each day praying about the specific aspect of MHCC called for in this guide. That way, we'll be united in our prayer concern for a small part of each day. And if you lead a class or group, please take a moment and pray together about the topic for that day.
We’ll have this guide ready a week at a time. You can get a paper copy for the week each Sunday at church (which is the only way to get the whole week in advance).
And we will send it each week to our email list as well. (Sign up for the email list on the front page of morrisonhill.com).
Let’s pray together!
- Dennis Mullen