March 2021 Fasting & Prayers — Day 3

March 2021 Fasting & Prayers — Day 3

Open and Close

Scripture For Meditation: Deuteronomy 28:1-24

We’ve been meditating and praying on the Theme: Open Heavens, as we’ve waited on the Lord in fasting for this month’s sessions.

But the thing is, if there are open heavens, it means also that there are possibilities of there being closed heavens as well.

If the heavens are closed over you, no amount of prayer or fasting, binding and loosening or prophesying will make any difference in your life or situation.

So, our main task and objective today, is to deal with the state of the heavens over our lives.

What Causes The Heavens to Be Closed?

Before we look at this, let’s first see what the bible says about “closed heavens”:

Heavens Like Brass and Earth Like Iron

Have you ever been in that place? Have you ever experienced a season in your life, when it appeared as though the heavens were like brass and the earth like iron? Have you ever gotten to the point where it seems like that last verse is playing out in a particular situation or your life in general?

A type of reenactment of that frustrating Jobsian moment like when job well in dire straits declared: “No matter where I turn or look, I can’t seem to find Him; if only I could get Him to hear my case”! Only this was not about some character in the bible, it is about you and the struggles you have been going through!

Shuttered Heavens

Even though the scripture that we just read was about God detailing through Moses to the children of Israel, the curses that would be the consequences of them breaking covenant and walking in disobedience to Him, there are times in our lives when that last verse seems to be our default state of affairs — Nothing seems to be coming down from heaven and nothing is coming up from the earth in spite of all our efforts!

It is like the heavens are shut up against us and the earth has refused to release the harvest from our labours and efforts. We have cried out to God in prayers and supplication; we have begged, grovelled and “faithed” our way through, but what we have believed God for has not materialised.

Then Mercy Spoke…

In 2 Chronicles 7:13-14, Solomon had a visitation from God at the dedication ceremony of the temple he had just built.

It is interesting to note that the promise that God made to Solomon made a reference to shut up heavens and its consequences. He then went on to proffer a solution to the problem —

13“When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people, 14if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land”.

PRAYER FOCUS

There are so many people going through a hard time right now. So many countries are buckling under the strain of recession and economic downturn. A lot of business are on the brink of collapse; marriages are failing and depression and suicide rates are rising. Unrighteousness and sinful living has become the order of the day.

So many dear saints are going through personal crises and are frustrated waiting for God to show up and bring deliverance. Can God see, does He hear, Does He still even care?

Dear friend, If the promise of reprieve from shut up heavens and restoration of God’s favour was made to Solomon in respect of an earthly building – the temple, can you imagine how much more glorious and powerful our heritage as New Testament Christians who are joint-heirs with Christ is; and for whom the precious blood of Jesus is speaking atonement on our behalf?

God said to Solomon — If His people humbled themselves and pray and seek His face and turn from their wicked ways, He will heal and forgive and restore.

That is our prayer today; our hearts cry to God.

If per chance, the sins of the land have stood between our welfare and God’s blessings, if the heavens have been shut up over our business, our ministry, church, home, marriage, children, family line, city or geographical area because of corporate or personal transgressions, we have a reprieve in God’s promise; we have an advocate in Christ Jesus!

Let’s humble ourselves before God today. Let’s stand in the gap for our families, the corporate body or group that we identify with. Let’s turn our face towards heaven; let’s repent and cry out to God to forgive our corporate and individual sins.

Let’s cry out to Him in faith —

Lord have mercy, Lord, hear us; Lord heal our land. Lord remember your promises and the blood that Your Son Jesus Christ shed for us on the cross. Lord please relent in your anger. Lord, Heal my life.

Pray this prayer in faith and hold on to the promises of God. We are believing together that there will be a turnaround in our situations — God will hear from heaven and answer us speedily; we are going from a life of delayed and unanswered prayers to a life of victory and favour with God and man in Jesus, Name. Amen.

Shalom,

Pastor Wale Ola

March 2021 Fasting & Prayers — Day 2

March 2021 Fasting & Prayers — Day 2

The Gate of Heaven

Scripture For Meditation: Genesis 28:10-16 (NET)

“10Meanwhile Jacob left Beer Sheba and set out for Haran. 11He reached a certain place where he decided to camp because the sun had gone down. He took one of the stones and placed it near his head.

Then he fell asleep in that place 12and had a dream.

He saw a stairway erected on the earth with its top reaching to the heavens. The angels of God were going up and coming down it 13and the LORD stood at its top.

He said, “I am the LORD, the God of your grandfather Abraham and the God of your father Isaac. I will give you and your descendants the ground you are lying on. 14Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west, east, north, and south. All the families of the earth will pronounce blessings on one another using your name and that of your descendants.

15I am with you! I will protect you wherever you go and will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I promised you!”

16Then Jacob woke up and thought, “Surely the LORD is in this place, but I did not realize it!”

17He was afraid and said, “What an awesome place this is! This is nothing else than the house of God! This is the gate of heaven!”

Hallelujah!

JACOB ON THE RUN

This is the story of Jacob, who fearing for his life, was on the run from his brother Esau, after he had deceived and robbed Esau of his inheritance.

Jacob had run away from home, and had gotten to a place where he was tired and spent, decided to lay down his head and sleep. As he did, The bible says:

“He took one of the stones and placed it near his head. Then he fell asleep in that place 12and had a dream.” Gen 28:11-12

Jacob had a revelation of God – He saw a connection between heaven and earth.

Jacob’s Revelation:

• He saw a ladder or stairway erected on the earth with the top reaching to heaven.

• He saw the Angels of God going up and coming down the ladder

• He saw the Lord standing at the top of the ladder

• God spoke to him and made him a promise:

“He said, “I am the LORD, the God of your grandfather Abraham and the God of your father Isaac. I will give you and your descendants the ground you are lying on. 14Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west, east, north, and south. All the families of the earth will pronounce blessings on one another using your name and that of your descendants. 15I am with you! I will protect you wherever you go and will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I promised you!” Gen 28:13-15

PRAYER FOCUS:

First, we are going to use Jacob’s vision to start our prayers; then we’ll use his declarations. After this, we’ll use some of the promises that God made to him, to petition God for our own breakthrough.

Jacob’s First Declaration:

16Then Jacob woke up and thought, “Surely the LORD is in this place, but I did not realize it!” 17He was afraid and said, “What an awesome place this is! This is nothing else than the house of God! This is the gate of heaven!”

God is in this place but I did not realise it.

But your own declaration today will be different; it will be:

God is in this place; and that I know very well!

Hallelujah!

Jacob made a second declaration:

What an awesome place this is.

It is time for you to change your confession about where you are, how things have been with you — maybe you have been crying and saying you are in a bad place. Your confession changes this very moment in the mighty Name of Jesus!

Declare it now by faith – What an awesome place this is.

Jacob’s 3rd Declaration:

This is nothing else but the House of God

The House of God Is the Place of His glory. The Place where He makes His tangible presence to be manifest.

Pray that God will make your location; your home, Business, workplace, school, the place of His residence.

Pray that the glory of His presence will be evident in your life and in your situation.

Jacob’s 4th Declaration:

This is the Gate of Heaven!

A gate denotes access or an entry point. Begin to pray and declare that there will be a gateway in your life, to heaven’s riches that God has prepared and made available to you in Christ Jesus as the bible affirms in Ephesians 1:3.

In the place where the sun had set; in the same place where all he had for a pillow to rest his weary head was a stone, God showed up and changed Jacob’s story!

Pray that God will change your story too.

Pray that God will Open the heavens over you and your household in every area of your lives.

Pray that God will cause the former rain and the latter rain to fall upon your land to give you a good harvest for your labour and bring you increase in Jesus’s Name.

Shalom,

Pastor Wale Ola

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March 2021 Fasting and Prayers — Day 1

March 2021 Fasting and Prayers — Day 1

Open Heavens

Scripture for Meditation: Acts 10:1-3

“1There was a certain man in Cæsarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band,

2A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway.

3He saw in a vision evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God coming in to him, and saying unto him, Cornelius.

4And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God.”

Assurance of Faith

We will be talking about open heavens over the next three days as we wait on the Lord in fasting and prayers.

In this first instalment, I will like us to consider some things that we can hold on to, as we stand in prayers to believe God for our breakthrough.

What do we have to do to experience open heavens in our lives?

From the scriptures that we will be meditating on in these series, we will see some helpful patterns emerge. One thing is very certain:

Child of God, you can live under open heavens. It is God’s desire and plan for your life to be lived under, and experience continually open heavens. We are seated with Christ in heavenly places, and we know that Christ is seated in the very presence and at the right hand of the Father.

WHAT TO DO

  • God’s Sovereignty — Many times, God opens the heavens to give man a revelation of His divine presence as a sovereign act without man’s input.
  • Prayers — Our prayers position us to experience open heavens.

In our theme scripture today, Cornelius “provoked” open heavens, as the bible said concerning him:

“Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God.”

This is also confirmed by the following two scriptures:

Luke 3:21— “Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened…”

James 5:17-18 —“17Elijah was a human being like us, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain and there was no rain on the land for three years and six months! 18Then he prayed again, and the sky gave rain and the land sprouted with a harvest.”

Have you remained steadfast and importunate in your prayers?

  • Giving — In the passage of scripture that we read earlier (Acts 10:3b), Cornelius’s prayers and his generous giving pushed through the heavens to come before God. Your giving (material and financial) can cause the heavens to be open unto you.

Are you generous in your giving?

This principle can also be seen highlighted in Malachi 3:10 — “Bring the entire tithe into the storehouse so that there may be food in my temple. Test me in this matter,“ says the LORD who rules over all, “to see if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until there is no room for it all.”

Are you faithful in your tithes and offerings?

  • Righteous Living and Obedience — As we read in our two scripture passages from Day 1 (In Dt 28:1-23 and 2 Chr 7:13-14), we saw that God warned Israel that the heavens will be shut up against them if they lived in rebellion and sinned against Him; and conversely, He promised Solomon that with repentant heart and righteous living, His people’s prayers will guarantee open heavens over their lives.

Are you living a life of obedience and righteousness?

  • Walking in God’s Purpose — One of the ways for us to enjoy open heavens over our lives is to make a commitment to aligning with and walking in God’s purpose for our lives. When we do this, God backs up His word in our lives with the whole of heaven’s resources made available to fulfil His vision and call for our lives.

Are you walking in alignment with God’s purpose for your life?

  • Faith — This is the building block that underpins every other thing that we have talked about.

It is the assurance of faith that we have in Christ Jesus, that guarantees us access to the throne room of God.

As the bible says in Ephesians 3:12b — “…in whom we have boldness and confident access to God because of Christ’s faithfulness”.

As God did when Elijah confronted the prophets of Baal, and later when he declared to Ahab about God opening up the heavens to send down rain, God honoured Elijah because he honoured and declared God’s words in faith. God responded to Elijah’s faith by opening up the heavens to magnify His Name.

Child of God, God wants to do the same in your life as well.

Will you let Him?

Selah,

Pastor Wale Ola

PRAYER FOCUS

Meditate on the points highlighted above, and use them as a checklist to prepare yourself as we round up our prayers for this month’s fast. Is there anything you need to do or redress in order to position yourself for what we are praying to God for?

Begin to petition God based on His word and pray that you will begin to walk in the tangible manifestation of open heavens over your life—your household, family, ministry, business, finances, church etc.

Declare and confess over your life, that from today, you will begin to operate and live under open heavens. That God will open the heavens unto you and over you.

Declare that every area of your life will begin to manifest the blessings and evidence of open heavens in the Name of Jesus.

Prayer & Fasting Online Corporate Prayers

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End of Year Fasting and Prayers (Day 3 of 21)

End of Year Fasting and Prayers (Day 3 of 21)

Strength In Waiting

Scriptures For Meditation — Isaiah 40:1-31; Phil 4:13; Eph 3:14-16

As we continue on the third day of our end of year fasting, the focus of our prayers today is to first ask for the breath of the Holy Spirit to minister a refreshing to us.

For many people, the year 2020 has been a year that’s taken a lot out of them for different reasons. All the plans that many started the year with; the hopes and aspirations for the year, the expectations for business, career, ministry, family, and different areas of their lives — all now seem to have been consigned into the pit of disappointment.

As a result of this, many people are discouraged and have become battle weary from what seems to be another wasted year of waiting and relentless fighting for the changes they had believed and hoped for.

But friend, know that our God is not limited by the dictates of time and seasons. He is the Author and Keeper of time — Your times are in His hands. His promises concerning your life are still on course to be fulfilled.

I pray for you that God as He gives you the grace to continue to stand strong, will refresh your spirit and strengthen your hands to keep holding on and your heart to keep believing in the word that He had spoken to you.

As David said in Psa 42:5 —

Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him For the help of His countenance.

Shalom!
Pastor Wale Ola

PRAYER FOCUS

Pray to God for a supernatural refreshing of the Holy Spirit.

Pray for the strength to wait on Him over this period of fasting.

Pray for a fresh anointing to come upon you to revive your spirit.

Pray that your ears will be open to receive with charity, the instructions and directions that God will speak to you concerning your life and the coming year.

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OCTOBER 2020 FASTING AND PRAYERS — DAY 3

OCTOBER 2020 FASTING AND PRAYERS — DAY 3

FIGHT WITH PURPOSE

Scripture For Meditation — 1Cor 9:24-27; Prov 20:18; Pro 24:3-6

The Lord is returning us once again to one of the scriptures that we read on Day 1 of our fasting and prayers – 1 Cor 9:24—27

A few years ago, I was going through a time of fasting and prayers “engaging the enemy in spiritual warfare”. It was one of those times of prayer when you feel so connected and anointed and feel that you can take on the world. In the midst of my smugness and bravado, God spoke a word to me, that promptly punctured my bubble —

Weapons don’t win wars, strategies do!

Yesterday, we talked about how with all the superior armament of the American and Allied forces, they were being outwitted by an enemy that was significantly less equipped, but very strategic in their approach to warfare. To win the war, the allied forces had to review their strategies and come up with the appropriate plans to outwit the enemy.

The core of the text that we will be focusing on today is verse 26, and the salient point of our mediation today is very simple.

Before the statement that he made in verse 26, Paul had been talking about the need to be intentional and focussed in the pursuit of purpose — Aiming to run in order to get the prize; training with discipline in order to compete well.

And in verse 26, Paul declares:

So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. (NLT)

The New International Version puts it slightly differently —

Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air.

There are too many of us Christians praying what I like to call “Machine Gun Prayers”; swinging and spraying and hoping something hits. The Lord is calling on us today, to be strategic in our prayers, to be purposeful in our warfare.

In Pro 20:18 the bible tells us that—

Plans succeed through good counsel; don’t go to war without wise advice.

And again in Prov 24:3-6 the Bible says:

Pro 24:3 A house is built by wisdom and becomes strong through good sense.

Pro 24:4 Through knowledge its rooms are filled with all sorts of precious riches and valuables.

Pro 24:5 The wise are mightier than the strong, and those with knowledge grow stronger and stronger.

Pro 24:6 So don’t go to war without wise guidance; victory depends on having many advisers.

Prayer Focus

Let’s take a break from our “warfare” today, and seek the face and counsel of the Lord, first to understand what our real warfare is, and then to understand what appropriate weapons He has put at our disposal to fight the war.

Let’s pray to understand the wiles or strategies that the enemy has been using to hinder us or is deploying against us in this season that we are in.

Let’s ask God to show us the strategies that we must apply to gain the victory over the enemy in order to fulfil the divine purpose for our lives!

Let’s pray for the wisdom and guidance of the Holy Spirit to confront the enemy and appropriate the victory that God secured for us through the finished works of Christ on Calvary’s Cross. Hallelujah!

Let’s thank God for the victory that is inevitably ours, and go forth in faith and confidence as we regain lost ground and take new territories in the power of the Holy Spirit in Jesus’s Name.

Amen.

Pastor Wale Ola

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OCTOBER 2020 Fasting and Prayers — Day 2

OCTOBER 2020 Fasting and Prayers — Day 2

NO RETREAT, NO SURRENDER

Scriptures For Meditation: Heb 10:35-39; Isa 40:27-31

A few years ago at the peak of the Gulf War, I remember listening to a US Army General give an interview after his forces had suffered some casualties in the hands of the insurgents.

The interviewer had wondered why the allied forces in spite of their superior numerical, tactical and weaponry advantages, were still finding it difficult to contain the enemy forces.

The answer that he gave the interviewer in response to the question had stuck in my mind ever since that day.

He said:

“The most dangerous enemy that you can face is an enemy that has no escape plans or an exit strategy.”

He explained that one of the core elements of warfare strategy and planning is to ensure the safe return of the forces from any course of action that is pursued. So the overall consideration of viability of a plan would not just be based on what you are able to achieve, but was oftentimes, also assessed with an eye on the potential loss of lives necessary to achieve that objective —You want to be able to lead your men into battle but also, to bring them safely back home.

He went on to make the point that there is an inherent weakness in every battle plan, when you also have to keep an eye on the exit strategy; and when you encounter an enemy on the battle ground who has come on a one-way suicide mission and has no distractions about thinking of escaping, you really are up against it!

He would take risks that you wouldn’t consider, go places that you won’t go and do things that many “right thinking” people would not even countenance.

What’s Your Exit Strategy?

As this came to my mind again today, I realise that perhaps one of the reasons that many believers face an uphill battle against the enemy is because some of us are fighting with an eye on an exit strategy!

In our relationships, careers, marriages, ministry engagements, and different areas of our lives, we may have unwittingly programmed failure into our endeavours because we have made room for an “if this doesn’t work I’ll try that” or maybe “if this doesn’t work , I’m out of here” attitude in our planning. We have a built-in exit strategy ready to go!

When Esther faced the king on behalf of her nation, she went in without an exit strategy. When Jesus was confronted with the cross, He had no exit strategy. When Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego faced the fiery furnace, they had no exit strategy.

My dear friend, it is time for you to let the enemy know that you have no exit strategy in pursuit of God’s call on your life and your God-given vision. There will be no retreat, there will be no surrender!

May God bless, refresh and strengthen you as wait on Him in Jesus’s Name.

Shalom!

Pastor Wale Ola

Prayer Focus

Following on from yesterday, God is calling us to a place of enduring commitment to the advancement of His purposes.

Make a declaration of your faith in God by recommitting yourself to the fulfilment of His plans concerning your life.

Confess and repent of any doubts or slackening of your faith or commitment to the assignment that God has given you or generally in your walk with Him.

Let’s pray for grace to hold on firmly to the promises of God concerning our lives.

Let’s pray for the release of a fresh anointing for breakthrough in the season that we are in.

Prayer & Fasting Corporate Prayers

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