When we think about every facet of our lives and the current season we’re experiencing on a global level, many of us have the mindset of “I can’t wait ‘til it all returns to normal!”
But, I wonder… is the Lord wanting to help all of us rearrange our mindset?
The truth is, we’re likely not going back to normal as we once knew it. All of us are now heading toward a new normal. Which begs the questions: How do we process that? How do we prepare for that as Christians? How are we to think about our new normal?
Well, we definitely continue to stand on what we know is a sure foundation. We believe in God! We believe in His Word (the Bible). We believe, regardless of anything happening in our world, that Jesus is Lord and is coming again. And yet, we live in the midst of some very uncertain, unusual times. So then, how do we prepare for the new normal? We prepare in PRAYER!
Preparing in Prayer for YOUR New Normal
Whether we like it or not, we are all in the season of preparing for the new normal. And we won’t make it through this season without prayer. I don’t mean that to sound bleak, I mean that to portray the overwhelming necessity of prayer as we navigate the coming times!
For both your own life and family and also for the global body of Christ at large, there are practical ways to prepare in prayer! One way is to recognize that what’s happening all around us is a spiritual battle and to follow the “battle plan” God gave us in Ephesians 6:10-18.
“Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in heavenly places. Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil.
Then, after the battle you will be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.”
Did you notice the first words of each of those bolded statements? They’re all verbs. As in, something you do.
We find more of this instruction in Psalm 55:17: Morning, noon, and night I cry out in my distress and the Lord hears my voice.
>> The new normal is a call to action. Our action step is simple: PRAY at all times, being led by the Holy Spirit. I’m not talking about written prayers or memorized prayers or religious prayers. I’m talking about Spirit-led, Spirit-initiated, Spirit-dominated prayers. This looks like partnering with the Holy Spirit to discern what HEAVEN wants us to pray about.
To help you better understand the basics of prayer and “pray by the rules,” I’ve written a practical, comprehensive, easy-to-follow Bible study called “Getting a Grip on the Basics of Prayer.” We’ve got to know HOW to pray if we're going to pray in preparation for our new normal!
Preparing in Prayer for OTHERS TO KNOW CHRIST
In talking about the “new normal” it’s easy to look ahead to the future and wonder: “God, what are you up to? What is Your will? Why is planet earth going so crazy right now and when is Jesus coming back for us?”
Let’s dig into God’s Word more than ever to gain knowledge and understanding about the times we are living in and where God’s priorities are!
We find this answer in James 5:7: “Therefore, be patient until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, waiting patiently for it until it receives the early and the latter rain. You also be patient! Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.”
>> We know Jesus is coming...but what’s he waiting on? He’s waiting on the precious fruit of the earth.
>> What is the precious fruit of the earth? The fruit of the earth is as many people as will come to Christ.
God is so patient. He is not slow concerning His coming. He is patient towards us, waiting and willing that all will come to repentance. That’s what He’s waiting on! God wants the precious fruit of the earth; He wants people to be saved and come to Christ, a revival, a harvest of souls before Jesus returns!!
That harvest of souls, that revival is waiting on something. Can you guess what it is? It’s waiting on the rain. The harvest before the Lord’s coming, the fruit of the earth, is waiting on the rain.
I’m sure you’re now asking, “What is the rain?”
Deuteronomy 32:2 tells us: “Let my teaching fall on you like rain; let my speech settle like dew. Let my words fall like rain on tender grass, like gentle showers on young plants.”
Hosea 6:3 says “Let us pursue the knowledge of the Lord. He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn or the coming of rains in early spring.”
Rain is the teaching of God’s word. Rain is the proclamation of God’s Word — of the gospel! It’s knowledge and revelation from the Bible!
So how do we get the rain? We find that answer in Zechariah 10:1. “Ask the Lord for rain in the spring, for he makes the storm clouds. And he will send showers of rain so every field becomes a lush pasture.” What do we have to do to get the rain? WE ASK FOR IT IN PRAYER.
Let’s look further at the rain cycle as described in the Bible to better understand the connection...
In Isaiah 55:9-10, Jesus says, “For as the heavens are higher than the Earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts. The rain and snow come down from the heavens and stay on the ground to water the earth.
They cause the grain to grow, producing seed for the farmer and bread for the hungry. It is the same with my Word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it.”
This is where YOU come in. This is our new normal...we are to PRAY like never before!
Let’s pray for God to fill us, to fill the body of Christ on earth — every preacher, every pastor, every evangelist, every apostle, every prophet, every Christian — fill us with your words so that we get so heavy that we can’t help but “rain down” upon our sphere of influence by sharing the Word! (Here's a link to a blog I shared recently with 3 Bible Prayers to Pray that would be a great place to get started!) When the rain (God’s Word) goes forth...it produces fruit...the precious fruit of the earth that the Lord is waiting on.
We play an active part in praying for our new normal — and we are responsible for praying for others to come to know Christ. This is our new reality, and we all get to decide if we’re up for it! Are you in?
For even more revelation on the importance of prayer, check out my newest book, “Getting a Grip on the Basics of Prayer.” It’s a practical, comprehensive, easy-to-follow Bible study that will stir you up in how important it is for believers everywhere to pray effective prayers!