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The power of vision.

​What is the power of vision? Is it the vision John and I shared Sunday? No. There power of vision is not the vision. The actual power of vision is the Holy Spirit (Eph 3:20-21) working in and through us. We shared the vision statement Sunday. Then explained it in three things we believe we must focus on in every ministry at Calvary. 

Teaching the word. 
Reaching the stranded. 
Unleashing the church. 

Yet at the center of the circle are the two things we have found over and over again in our journey through the Book of Acts: prayer that connects us as the church to the Holy Spirit, thus accomplishing the vision of God. 

What does this mean for us

1. We need to have a daily, personal ability to pray and live in the fullness of the Spirit. 

2. We need to have a daily understanding that we pray not just personally, but also corporately. 

3. When we pray together, God loves it. So, on Wednesdays at 12 noon at the church campus we pray for an hour. Some come for 15 minutes. Others can stay the whole hour. Some can't come to our campus but have set their alarms to pray at 12 noon in some way. 

As we pray, God is present. 
Keep praying because .... 
The power of pray is not the vision itself; It's God Himself. 

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Vision. What now?

Yesterday was a great day of celebration of not only what God has done, but of what He will do. You could cut the excitement with a knife. Thank you for your prayers and willingness to be a part of what God is doing at Calvary Ruidoso.

Here are the notes I used yesterday for the first part of the message where we focused on the vision in a simple way. Jesus wants us to live out the vision. Talk up life giving stuff, Live it. Pray it. And you may want to make a list of things in your life where you need to work on being life giving. My list is below. 

A church with vision unifies around that vision. In the days and weeks ahead we will be further exploring what it means to be a life giving people for God. 

Passivity is the enemy of passion. On this, let's have passion. Let's be aggressive. Share the life giving Savior and Lord with everyone. 

Love you all. 

Pastor Alan 
John 10:10

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Life giving churches choose the right side and pursue God there.

"The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.
I came that they may have life and have it abundantly."
John 10:10

Life giving churches fight against the enemy in his territory.

"And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock,I will build
my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it."  
Matt 16:18

Life giving churches remember God can do more than they think.

"Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think,
according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church
and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen." 
Eph 3:20-21

Three examples of what it means to be a life giving … Person. Pastor. Church.

A life giving life …

Constantly pursues the life Giver - John 10:10
Refuses to camp in negativity - John 10:10
Speaks life - Prov 18:21
Walks by faith not by sight - Gal 2:20
Understands the plight of the stranded - Rom 3:23-24
Experiences each day of life as a mission trip - Matt 28:19-20

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Fasting and Prayer Guide

Prayer and Fasting Guide
January 1-21, 2019

Seek Jesus

1 - Read Psalm 139. Thank God for who He is in this passage. Thank Him for who you are (v. 14). Ask Him to search you deeply, confess sin to Him, and ask Him to lead you forward (v. 23-24)

2 - 1 John 1:9. Today, spend time confessing where sin is present in your life. Get serious about it. Agree with God about your sins. Receive true forgiveness from God (Rom 8:1). Turn from sin.

3 - John 10:10. Pray against the enemy's purpose. Ask the Father that you would be a life giving follow of Jesus Christ. Ask Him to enable you to reject the negative. Be encouraging today.

4 - Luke 9:62. Following Jesus looks forward and forgets what is behind us (Phil 3:13-14). As you see a new year ahead, leave what's not needed behind. Pray for faith to move forward.

5 - John 13:34-35. Ask the Lord to give you a fresh, Holy Spirit empowered ability to love. Pray, seeking to recognizing our witness is linked to our loving each other. Make a commitment to love.

6 - Acts 1:6-11. We are to be on mission with God (v. 8). Yet at times we are just standing around when we should be moving forward (v. 11). Ask the Lord to get you moving forward on purpose.

7 - Matt 6:14-15. Today, focus on forgiving everyone unforgiven in your life. If hard, good. Just do it. It doesn't mean you approve what caused the pain. It means you choose love and mercy for Jesus sake.

Serve Jesus

8 - Read 1 Cor. 12:1-7. Pray for the Holy Spirit to reveal to your mind and heart, where and how you fit into the body of Christ. Pray for revelation truth of having an assignment and equipping of God.

9 - Read Romans 12:1-3. "I pray for the revelation of your special and good purpose that You Lord have called me to live out. Show me the doors I'm to hold open for You."

10 - Read Eph. 4:11. Pray "Lord show me the work of the ministry You have equipped me do. Direct my ever action to the doors I'm to hold open. I thank you for the leadership You have provided for my preparation to open Your doors."

11 - Read Matt. 28:18-20. Pray "Lord show me who and how I am to disciple. Thank you Father for the calling and equipping to hold open every door You show me for Your children to know You and serve You."

12 - Read Hebrews 13:20-21. Pray, "Father renew my mind daily that I will open the doors You direct and close those You desire closed."

13 - Read Eph. 3:20-21. "I pray Father for me to constantly be aware You are the power and wisdom behind every door I open or close. It will never be of my own volition that I serve."

14 - Read Proverbs 3:5-7. "Lord I pray these words every day that only You direct my paths and I will not trust my understanding. You oh Lord are the wisdom I crave to live by."

Share Jesus

15 - Read 1 Peter 1. Ask yourself if the hope of heaven and eternity with God is the driving factor in your life? Also, pray for God's holiness to be reflected in you. Does this world mold and shape your view about God or does God shape your view of the world?

16 - Read 1 Peter 2. What is your witness? In other words, how has God changed you? Are you walking in the footsteps of Jesus? How does your life impact the world around you?

17 - Read 1 Peter 3. one of the marks of being a true believer is our ability to love; not only those who love us, but to love the unlovable and even those who hate us. Jesus said, "Love your enemies and do good to those who persecute you. How's this working for you?

18 - Read 1 Peter 4-5. Do you know that God cares very deeply for you? You are His child. He seeks to guide and comfort you. Do you believe He cares?

19 - Read 2 Peter 1. We know that we are saved by grace and not by works. We have put our trust in the work of God through His Son on the cross. But, do we play a role in the salvation we already have? Just as any child must eventually feed himself, so we must feed off God's word, applying its truths to our hearts. "Add to your faith virtue.

20 - Read 2 Peter 2. What are the marks of a false teacher?

21 - Read 2 Peter 3 . The day of the Lord is coming. What will He say to you when you stand before Him?



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21 Days of Prayer and Fasting

Prayer and fasting.

When we say "prayer" it's all good. When we add "fasting" it gets weird right? OK. This is not that. We are asking you to pray about praying and fasting for 21 days from January 1-21.

Why fast?

Biblical fasting with prayer and the word, seeking to know God deeper, is our main purpose to consider fasting.

How to fast?

Here's a few things to consider

1. You can do partial fasts.

This would for example mean, you can fast from kinds of food. You can fast for certain times of the day. For example, you may say, "I will not eat while the sun is up." You may skip a meal or two. Or you may just say for 21 days I will not eat carbs or sweets. You may do the Daniel fast which is eating only vegetables. You may fast for only 5 days a week concerning food. Then have a different plan for the weekend.

2. When you fast drink much water and juices.

3. When you fast, spend more time in prayer, silence, and scripture reading.

4. Make a prayer list during these 21 days.

5. Your fast may be digital.

No TV. No phone. No social media. You may feel led to fast from something that does not involve food at all. That is an option, especially if you have dietary concerns. If it draws you closer to God, it works.

6. Remember, we are on the "guilt free" road.

You can start any time on the 1st and quit any time on the 21st. You may want to just fast for 2-3 days a week. If this is your first time fasting, you may want to spread it out. Fasting can be intimidating. Remember, we are not about legalism. We are about life and freedom.

7. Plan your fast.

If you don't plan it, fasting will be hard. You have to be able to say to yourself, "I'm fasting; I'm not eating this or that. I'm spending time in prayer instead." You will have to plan to not eat certain foods or it will be tough.

For example, I (Alan) will not be eating carbs or sweets for 21 days. I will be making a schedule of daily shakes and will probably eat salads for 21 days. (It's hard to write that :-) and I may allow for some kind of meat on the weekends. I'm not fully sure yet. But I will be writing it down and will be able to show you.

Also, don't see your fast as a way to diet or find better habits. What you are doing is simply creating a block of time to draw closer to God in order to discern his will and find direction in your life (and for the church). Read Romans 12:1-2.

For example, I (John) will be removing TV from my life for these three weeks. But I will be replacing it with reading and writing. The key to a successful time fast is to replace the wasted time with productive spiritual growth.

Here is a good comprehensive understanding of fasting and prayer from the late Dr. Bill Bright, from Cru. Take a look.

We will share more in the weeks coming.

We will set up some prayer options for you. There will be a devotional passage and prayer for each day. This will be in print and through digital media.

What if God wants to bring revival and awakening out of our time or seeking Him for 21 days?

We love you church. You're the best. If you have any questions about prayer and fasting, just ask us.

Pastors John and Alan



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