Category Archives: Prayer

David Platt’s T4G Message: The Role of Desperate Prayer in the Mystery of Divine Providence

The following are my notes of David Platt’s message at T4G 2014.

I feel so inadequate to preach a message on the wrath of God. I want to pray, but I have this sin sick desire to impress you all when I pray. I also know that many of us within seconds of praying we let our minds wonder. Do we realize that we are talking with God when pray and who he is?

“Prayer is a huge hole in the canvas of the reformed resurgence.” (John Piper)

We have seen a renewed interest in theology, ecclesiology, and missiology. All of these things are growing, but something is missing. It is prayer.

Back when they would gather for the Westminster assembly they would spend an hour praying and an hour preaching. Two hours preaching and two hours of praying. Yet we spend hours preaching in our church, but just a few minutes praying.

We are known for preaching and teaching, but not our praying and our fasting. Every movement of God has been marked by passionate panting before God. The missions movements, the puritans movements, and every revival of the church has been marked by prayer. Yet our movement of growing theology, ecclesiology, and missiology without prayer. Continue reading

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October Newsletter

“This is from the LORD”
— Genesis 24:50

This morning I read the story in Genesis 24 that explains how Isaac’s wife, Rebekah, was found. Abraham sent one of his servants to find a non-Canaanite woman for Isaac. Abraham’s servant began his mission by asking God to give him success and his prayer was immediately answered. When the servant was telling Rebekah’s brother, Laban, the story he said that before he could even finish praying Rebekah greeted him (Gen. 24:45). When Laban heard the way God answered his prayer, he said, “This is from the LORD; we have no choice in the matter…Take her and go.” (24:50)

When I read Laban’s response those words jumped out to me! Certainly, the ancient Jewish culture was different than ours today, but I can only imagine all the different thoughts and feelings Laban had about his sister leaving with some stranger’s servant to marry a man he has never met! Yet, regardless of how Laban may have been feeling we do know that when Laban heard how God answered prayer he could not deny this was from the LORD.

I think we can relate a lot with what is going on in this story. This past month we have experienced a vast array of emotions. We began the month with great excitement about finding our new home in Chicago. Then we experienced all the highs and lows of packing and moving. There have been plenty of sad days, as we have had to say our goodbyes to all our friends and family in D.C. There have also been plenty of joyful days as we have met new friends and reconnected with old ones in Chicago. Continue reading

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Filed under Chicago, Church Planting, Genesis, Monthly Newsletters, Prayer

The Holy Spirit and Church Planting, Pt. 2

This post is the second part of a two part series on the Holy Spirit and Church Planting. Click HERE to read the first post.

THE HOLY SPIRIT IN CHURCH PLANTING

There really are a number of useful methodological applications that we could make based off of what we saw from the book of Acts in the first post. For the purpose of this post it is best that we narrow our focus to one specific application. Consequently, the remainder of this post will focus on the relationship between making plans and following the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Continue reading

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Prayer Request # 1

“Call to me and I will answer you.” – Jeremiah 33:3

I have now lived in our new home in Chicago for two weeks and today I was able to meet several new people. I should have many good opportunities to see all of these people again and work on building relationships with them.

This was a very clear and specific answer to a prayer I prayed earlier today. I plan to share more of the story in the October newsletter, but for now will you join me in praying for opportunities to share the gospel with the following people:

* Daniel * Armando * Anthony * Terrell * Tom

Thank you for praying! Phill

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Filed under Chicago, Church Planting, Day-to-Day Prayer Requests, Evangelism, Prayer

September Newsletter

“Indeed these are the mere edges of His ways.”
— Job 26:14

Does God Answer Prayer? 

In last month’s newsletter we explained that our target move date was December because we were trying to figure things out with our housing. So we asked you to be praying this month that God would give us wisdom and that he would provide for these needs. Should we be surprised one month later as we look back and see that God has in fact answered these prayers? Don’t we serve a God who delights in answering the prayers of his people?

There are a dozen or more stories that we could share with you from this past month about specific ways God has answered prayer. Early in September we spent a week in the Chicago area meeting up with many different people and sharing our vision for planting a church in the city. All throughout this trip God was so faithful to answer our prayers. We had many encouraging meetings and added several new prayer and financial partners. We see that entire week as one big answer to prayer.  Continue reading

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August Newsletter

“He determined the allotted periods and boundaries of our dwelling place.”
— Acts 17:26

Summer Summary

When the school year ended in May, our 1-year commitment with Campus Outreach at George Washington University ended as well. Once that happened our focus immediately shifted to putting a big dent into the 39 credits Phill had left for his seminary degree.

So we came up with a plan that would enable Phill to earn 21 credits in just over 2 months! It involved us living in North Carolina for 2 weeks, taking a test at a gas station while we were droving out to awedding in Illinois, and spending a few days in Atlanta for a church planting conference. It was very challenging, but we did it! Now there is finally light at the end of the seminary tunnel!
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God Answers Prayer!

Throughout the last three years we have been regularly praying for the Holy Spirit to lead us as we make plans for future ministry. More specifically, we were praying God would lead us to do ministry in a place that was:

1) In a large global city

2) In a diverse neighborhood of that city

3) Close to major colleges or universities

We are well aware that there are great needs for churches all over the world in both rural and urban areas. However, we get most excited about the strategic opportunities for disciple-making that exist in cities. So we prayed that God would give us those opportunities and if he did not open those doors we would faithfully serve him in a rural or suburban setting. We want to be proven faithful wherever we are living. Continue reading

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Filed under Chicago, Church Planting, Prayer