Read: Daniel 9:3 |
re • set – the act of setting again or back to the original position.
My smartphone began having problems a few days after installing some apps. The system time was off by hours causing me to miss some pre-set Alarms. Whenever I checked email, the system complained that an important sounding process had stopped. Confused and frustrated, I eventually went to the store to get it repaired. The technician recommended a factory reset. This process would restore my phone to the initial settings of the maker. The technician instructed me to re-install the apps while being careful to leave off the suspicious app(s).
In our lives, when we “App” (apply) the world’s standard of living, talking, relating and walking to our lives, we can develop problems like my cell phone. After a while, if not careful, our internal clock is reset and we begin to miss Godly appointments (link). We no longer hear the alarms that we are wandering too far from God. We stop responding to God’s voice and avoid reading His Word because the non-approved “App’s” interfere and distract us. At such a time, we are advised to reset to our Maker’s and Savior’s settings by repenting and seeking God. The “RESET” will “restore” us from our “stuck” condition.
Brian Carter, my Senior Pastor at Concord Missionary Baptist Church in Dallas (link) started our Church on a thematic 21-day fast entitled “RESET” on the first Sunday of January in 2014. “RESET” is a 21-day journey of prayer, fasting and Bible study. Allow me to share the precepts and principles, in case they are useful to you or your church.
During the launch, Pastor Carter noted that, “Sometimes, in our lives, we get locked up or stuck. Stuck in bad habits; stuck in our dreams; stuck in unhealthy relationships; and even stuck in our relationship with God. I know what it is like to be stuck”. He outlined three spiritual aides: prayer, fasting and studying to guide us as we pray and seek God’s guidance to move us from “stuck” to “restored”.
RESET by Prayer
Prayer is crucial in our lives as believers and essential to a healthy growing relationship with God. Create time to have a personal prayer time. Additionally, make the time to pray with your family, friends or church members corporately. Suggested prayer session topics to RESET by:
• Believing God for answered prayer to our specific needs
• Declaring our dependence on God in every area of our lives
• Asking for forgiveness for our sins and the sins of our land
• Praying for the completion of the Great Commission
• Inviting the Presence of God in our church and our lives
• Crying out to God for revival in our generation
RESET by Fasting
Fasting is a spiritual discipline in which a believer denies themselves something for spiritual purposes.
While fasting typically refers to food, it can apply to other things as well. A believer can fast from FaceBook, TV, Xbox or any number of things that occupy a good portion of our time. The commitment to fast allows us to reset and refocus on God by removing things we normally enjoy and replacing them with prayer and Bible study.
My church practices the Daniel fast, which is a vegetarian fast [link]. However, Pastor Carter emphasizes that we can make our fast personal and common sense based our health condition and other factors. See link for details [link].
RESET by Studying
God’s Word gives us the instruction and inspiration we need for our lives. Thus, Bible study is crucial to resetting our lives. To know God better, study His Word and allow Him to reveal Himself.
Corporately, Pastor Carter selected we all study the “Sermon on the Mount” found in the book of Matthew, chapters 5 – 7. Each day, we read an assigned passage and applied the SOAP bible study method (link).
Praying, Fasting and Studying is what the great saints of faith did such as Moses, Elijah, Daniel and Paul (Exodus 34:28; 1 Kings 19:8; Daniel 9:3; Daniel 10:2-3; 2 Corinthians 11:27; Matthew 4:2). Each of them fasted to draw closer to God. Joins us in Praying, Fasting and Studying to “ RESET” our spirits to our Maker’s settings and draw closer to God.
A. Pray and ask God to help you discover the area’s in your life He wants you to RESET
B. Share these areas with a Prayer Partner and commit to a plan
A. Using the area’s God identified, begin to develop them
B. Seek God’s input on the type of Fast to use to heighten your prayer and seeking, during this time of RESET
C. Try using the S.O.A.P. method of Bible Study (link) during your Bible Study Time to explore God’s Word
A. Stay committed to your prayer, Bible Study and Fasting during the period designated in your Church or individually
B. During the Fasting period, pray when tempted to break the fast and seek God more.