“Wait eagerly” are the two words introduced for this year’s theme of 2020.
Hebrews 9:28 tells us: “[Jesus] will come again, not to deal with our sins, but to bring salvation to all who are eagerly waiting for him.”
This outlook and attitude of eagerly waiting for Jesus’ second coming is also our focus in our first week of prayer and fasting for 2020. This is also an important follow-up to our conversation with God from our last 7 Days of Prayer & Fasting: Devote Yourselves to Prayer. Our life of constant prayer and waiting actively on God are vital in witnessing His kingdom come.
In Acts 1:4, after Jesus presented himself alive to his disciples, He then commanded them not to leave Jerusalem but to wait for the Father’s promise. This was the promised Holy Spirit, “for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now” (vs 5).
How do you think the disciples felt about receiving this unthinkable promise in a matter of days? Within the mix of many different feelings, they were probably also quite eager for this day to finally come! In fact, this is what the disciples asked Jesus a little later, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?”
Jesus said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:6-8).
The disciples asked when, and Jesus responded with what. Specifically Jesus said “it is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority.” God’s timing is not for us to know nor should it ever be our focus. Our focus is on the “what” of God’s promise not the “when.” We simply trust God for His perfect timing and keep our minds focused on what He has told us and given us to do. The disciples were to wait in Jerusalem to receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon them to be witnesses from Jerusalem to the ends of the earth. That was the what they needed to wait and actively be ready for.
Have you been distracted by the “when” question? Reflect on what happens when this becomes your primary focus. How do you end up feeling? What happens to your faith?
What things have God told you to wait on Him for? Are any of these important to focus on during this week of prayer and fasting?
If you plan to fast this week, please be kind to your insides and prepare properly. Don’t gorge out on food because it’s your “last meal” for a while. Rather, take a couple of days to gradually reduce the amount of food you are eating at each meal. This way your stomach gradually shrinks and gets used to having less food. If you intend to fast right through the 7 days, whether it is one meal or all food, prepare your schedule in advance. Think about appointments that may involve food.