Dear church family, here are the things I’m praying for our church in these days. I invite you to join me in praying for these things, along with anything else the Holy Spirit lays on your heart.
“As I urged you when I was going to Macedonia, remain at Ephesus so that you may charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine, nor to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies, which promote speculations rather than the stewardship from God that is by faith. The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. Certain persons, by swerving from these, have wandered away into vain discussion, desiring to be teachers of the law, without understanding either what they are saying or the things about which they make confident assertions. Now we know that the law is good, if one uses it lawfully, understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, in accordance with the gospel of the glory of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted.” 1 Timothy 1:3-11
- That we would believe the bible is the absolute truth of God for all people in all places at all times.
- That we would submit ourselves to the bible as our highest authority in our church, our homes, the workplace, and the public square.
- That we would allow the truths of God’s word to shape and form our living.
- That we would fear God rather than man. That we would surrender to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.
- That NEHBC would be protected from false doctrine and false prophets infecting our congregation.
- That Pastor Nathan, along with our other pastors and bible teachers would not be deceived by false doctrine.
“I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.” 2 Timothy 4:1-5
- That Pastor Nathan would live a life of personal holiness and intimacy with Christ.
- That Pastor Nathan would be disciplined to spend lots of time each week in prayer and study, receiving God’s messages for our congregation.
- That the Holy Spirit and the congregation would protect Pastor Nathan’s time in prayer and study each week.
- That our congregation would be filled with the Spirit and atuned to His leading during our sermons.
- That the Holy Spirit would anoint the Sunday morning sermons so they have their full effect upon our congregation and members.
“For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 1:5-11
- That Pastor Greg, Pastor Brandon, and Cindy Rogers would be filled with the Holy Spirit as they implement our discipleship ministry.
- That our LifeGroup leaders would be filled with the Spirit as our “leaders of tens”.
- That the Lord would bless our LifeGroups and all of our members would join one.
- That all of our members would desire to develop spiritually rather than be content with our current spiritual state.
- That we would grow in our sincere desire for personal holiness.
- That we would grow in our hunger for the truly spiritual things: prayer, bible study, local evangelism, the spread of the gospel among the nations, discipleship of young believers.
- That we would grow in our denial of self of the cause of Christ.
- That our more developed members would be willing to disciple less developed members, and that the less developed members would want disicipleship.
THE TRUE GOSPEL
“For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.” 1 Timothy 2:5-6
- That we would hold to God’s standard of salvation in our preaching and teaching — may we neither add to God’s standard of salvation nor take away from it.
- That in every worship service the gospel would be shared both for unbelievers and believers alike.
- That the gospel would be shared regularly in our LifeGroups.
- That the gospel would be discussed regularly in our homes.
“First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” 1 Timothy 2:1-3
- That Pastor James would be filled with the Holy Spirit as he implements our evangelism/missions ministries.
- In the passage above, there is a direct tie between prayer and evangelistic effectiveness.
- For any unsaved members to come to the realization they are unbelievers and to give their lives to Christ.
- That we would be unashamed of the gospel.
- That our hearts would be sincerely broken for those who do not yet believe and we would have urgency to get the gospel to them.
- Paving The Way — for us to reach “built out and debt free” so we are positioned for significant missions and church planting.
- Jericho Project — may more and more of our members help us reach every home in the immediate vicinity of our church.
- Farrington Mission – the women’s health center, the food pantry, the clothing closet, the basketball ministry, the volunteers who sort, serve, share.
- North Houston Church Planting — for God to reveal our church planter and church plant location.
- Backyard Bible Clubs — June 13-17; pray for the planning and prep
- Middle School Houston Missions Week — June 13-17; pray for the planning and prep for our middle schoolers to spend a week evangelizing in our city.
- Jericho Project week — June 20-24, 9am-3pm daily. Our members can spend a focused week making a significant dent in our JProject goal of 38,000 houses.
- Muslim ministry — we have tried hard for two years to find an open door; all doors seem closed. Is God saying “not at this time?”
- Estonia — pray for Tom and Jennifer as they prepare to move to Fort Worth, Texas.
- London — pray for Andrew and Sarah who lead Southside Baptist Church; pray for Del and Charmaine who are planning to move to London to join the team.
- Mozambique — pray for Jason and Amanda as they prepare to return to the States for 6 months starting in July.
- North Africa — pray for our brothers and sisters in the underground church of the UPG where we work.
- Middle East — pray for Nick and the possibility of a medical clinic opening.
- Toronto Mission Trip–June 25-July 2; pray for our teenagers as they take the gospel to UPGs from Central and SE Asia.
“But as for you, teach what accords with sound doctrine. Older men are to be sober-minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness. Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled. Likewise, urge the younger men to be self-controlled. Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity and sound speech that cannot be condemned, so that an opponent may be put to shame, having nothing evil to say about us.” Titus 2:1-8
- That we would deeply value being an intergenerational church. Not just a church of all generations, but a church in which there is a cross-pollination of all generations.
- That our more mature adults would invest in our younger adults. That our younger adults would receive the mentoring of our older adults.
- That LGs of different seasons of life would intentionally plan fellowships and serving together.
- That Pastor Nathan and Jorge would have wisdom in planning music for our church that is a middle road for all generations to sing together.
- That we would deeply value being a church diverse in cultures and ethnicities. Not just a diverse church, but a church in which we enjoy and appreciate our cultural differences.
- That our leadership would become more ethnically diverse.
- That Pastor Nathan and Jorge would have wisdom in planning music for our church that is a middle road for all ethnicities to sing together.
Matthew 16:15-19; 18:15-20; Acts 2:41-42, 47; 5:11-14; 13:1-3; 16:5; Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:2; 3:16; 5:4-5; 7:17; 12; Ephesians 1:22-23; 2:19-22; 3:8-11, 21; 5:22-23; Philippians 1:1; Colossians 1:18; Hebrews 11:39-40; Revelation 2-3; 21:2-3.
- That the Holy Spirit would draw to NEHBC everyone He intends to be a living stone in this temple He is building for Jesus Christ.
- That those who come to NEHBC would begin to understand more deeply the importance of church membership–for the protection of the church and our own lives.
- That our “pending members”, those in our membership process, would clearly hear the leading of the Spirit re: NEHBC.
- That our members would be renewed together in our serious commitment to pursue and serve Christ and His vision for us.
- That our pastors would shepherd with sincerity and faithfulness.
- That our members would follow the leadership of our shepherds.
- That our members would be faithful in Sunday morning worship, a LifeGroup, serving our church’s needs, and living on mission.
- That the Lord would expose and drive out “wolves in sheep’s clothing”.
- That the Lord would protect our unity.
- That on the rare occasions church discipline reaches its advanced stages, that our leaders would listen carefully to the leading of the Spirit.
Acts 6:3-6; 14:23, 27; 15:1-30; 20:28; 1 Corinthians 9:13-14; 1 Timothy 3:1-15; 4:14; 1 Peter 5:1-4.
- For the Holy Spirit to bless Christ’s design for local church structure: Christ ruled, congregation approved, pastor led, member served.
- For Pastor Nathan as he leads our congregation.
- For our trustees who are closely involved with Pastor Nathan and regularly review our finances, membership happenings, vision implementation, and the big things Pastor Nathan is thinking: Jim Hamilton, Danny Wolfe, and Scott Harper.
- For our Leadership Team who shepherd our “hundreds”: Pastors Brandon, James, and Greg; for our Directors: Cindy Rogers, Bill Campbell, and Jorge Pinto.
- For our many LG leaders who shepherd our “tens”.
- For our deacons who assist our pastors with extraordinary spiritual situations in members’ personal lives: Gene Shine, Elmer Banes, Randy Bentley, Brett Thompson