November 2020 – a season of Soaking and Seeking

Recently as part of our journey going through the Book of Acts, 

Paul McMahon preached a message entitled ‘From Lockdown To Lift-off’ (this is available on the King’s Church web site or Facebook page). This was taken from Acts 1; as Jesus put His disciples into a lock down situation certain key things took place that are very important for us to grasp if we are going to be fully prepared for ‘lift-off’ in the Holy Spirit.

One of the keys is found in verse 14; here the church went into a season of corporate prayer, waiting on the Lord, a time of soaking and seeking as they worked with the Lord in unpackaging what the Promise for their future was all about and how they were to align with it.

At present we face the challenge that meeting together for some is already proving difficult; so as a Leadership team we are inviting the whole church to join us where you can, in homes, or together where appropriate to spend a minimum of 15 minutes a day ‘Soaking in the Spirit’ and 15 minutes a day ‘Seeking the Lord’; please feel free to go longer if you desire.

Inside this leaflet are some teaching helps on Soaking and Seeking and also a prayer plan that we can all involve with knowing that with ‘one mind and one heart and one purpose’ we are together embracing the opportunity of entering into a season of soaking and seeking confident that this is part of God’s plan for getting us His church ready for lift-off into greater realms of blessing. 

Have a very blessed season

Paul McMahon 

SOAKING IN THE SPIRIT

What is it?

In essence, ‘soaking’ is intentionally drawing near to God with the desire to spend uninterrupted time with Him, consequently discovering who He is and who we are in, and to, Him.  We can use different words to describe this time; soaking, meditation, drawing close, meeting in the secret place etc but at the heart – it’s spending quality time with God with no agenda other than to be with Him and find out more about Him and His love for us. As with most relationships, the more time we spend with someone, the more they “rub off” on us and the more we look, sound, act and speak like them! Christian meditation should always lead us to be like Christ and be in line with God’s Word, the bible. 

How do I enter and involve?

Plenty of our biblical predecessors, patriarchs and heroes of the faith were obedient to God’s instruction to meditate and enter this discipline of soaking. But how, in practical terms, do we ‘soak’ with God?  Generally, the western, modern church isn’t anywhere near as familiar or comfortable with this as the early church was. There are, in fact, quite a lot of techniques we can adopt to enter into a time of soaking and meditation with God.  Here are a few to help get us started: 

Preparation – find somewhere you’ll be undisturbed, come into each time with expectation and faith, come believing that God will meet you, come knowing you are so deeply loved and treasured by Him, putting on some calming instrumental music often helps, pray a brief prayer to ask Him to open your spiritual eyes and ears so you’ll see and hear what He has for you, I always ask Him to sanctify my imagination and thank Him that I am covered by His blood and am protected, take some slow, deep breaths and allow any stressful, anxious thoughts & the day’s to do list to exit your mind. Note – this is not a time where you bring prayer requests, do warfare or bring your agenda, you are making space for Him.

Exercises to try

1 – Close your eyes. picture yourself in a garden which God has created just for you.  Invite Jesus into the garden.  Watch as He enters.  Allow Him to show you around the garden.  Notice the sky and the weather. If sunny, take time to feel the sun on your skin.  What can you smell? What can you hear? Marvell at creation and the Creator. Take as long as you choose. There is no hurry in the secret place.  Then, sit with Jesus, He may chat, He may not. Enjoy Him.  Soak in His presence. Enjoy His adoration of you. This is a safe place where you are fully known and fully loved.  Be as vulnerable and honest with Him as you can.

Know He enjoys being with you.  Contemplate that wonder! Come regularly to this garden, see what Holy Spirit, Abba Father and Jesus have to reveal to you.

2 – Choose a short scripture i.e. “..the Lord your God goes with you.  He will never leave you nor forsake you.” Deut 31:6 NIV. Read it a few times, read it out loud, read it aloud placing the emphasis on different words eg THE Lord your God goes with you, the Lord YOUR God goes with you, the Lord your God GOES with etc.  Change the pronouns “..the Lord my God goes with me. He will never leave me nor forsake me.”  Now, “God, You go with me.  You will never leave me nor forsake me”.  Picture Him going with you through your day. Allow Him time to reveal more about Himself as One who is always with you.

3 – Look out your window – can you see any nature? – ask God to speak to you through what you see.

4 – Spend time thinking about different attributes of God eg His Love, His mercy, His generosity, His kindness, being aware of His presence, recognising He is in your room with you, soak in His love/mercy/generosity etc.

What is the purpose of this?

This is a spiritual discipline.  It takes practice. Like a muscle when exercised it will grow stronger and you’ll be able to do more, longer.  Your intimacy with God will deepen exponentially, your sense of peace will increase, your faith will grow, you’ll receive inner healing and freedom, your prophetic gift will develop, you’ll become more and more saturated in God and drip His glory where you go, your understanding of who God is and how involved in your life He is increases, confidence in your position as a child of God deepens, your perspective on your circumstances change, plus the bible tells us meditation and soaking causes us to be prosperous and successful! You’ll probably find it’s easier to “practice His presence” and remain connected to Heaven throughout the day too.

Available resources

Music:   Google/Youtube “Christian soaking music”

Kimberley & Alberto Rivera have some albums which are great for soaking times.

Angus has recorded an instrumental guitar album ‘Síocháin (Peace)’; available on CD or online

Graham Cooke (speaker, minister) has numerous resources on his website to help draw near to God

Book – ‘Celebration of Discipline’ (Richard Foster) has a fantastic chapter on meditation. You can pick this up second hand very cheaply.

Cath & Angus are releasing a 30 day journey of meditation & soaking book with Cds in January 2021

SEEKING THE LORD

One of the great privileges we have as children of God is the invitation to partner with Him in the out-working of His purposes here in our world. Jesus helped us by defining it like this; pray 

‘Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven’.

Seeking the Lord or waiting on the Lord as it is sometimes called is about entering in to that ‘Secret Place with Him whereby we take time to both ‘listen for His voice’ and then call into being what we understand to be His will. It’s not a prayer list but a partnership meeting – the highest ministry role any human can fulfil.

The two most important aspects of seeking the Lord are learning how to ‘Pray in the Spirit’ and to ‘Pray the Word’ – these are like the twin-engines on a plane – both are required to keep the craft in the air and going in the right direction.

PRAYING IN THE SPIRIT

This is when our praying from our spirit is energised and motivated by the Holy Spirit within us. It can emerge as praying with our ‘minds’ that is in our native language and our human understanding or from our spirit which is usually associated with praying in tongues! This is a wonderful gift from the Spirit and needs to be used and developed greatly as we seek the Lord. You can’t overdose on tongues – use the gift liberally, it was given to grow you!

PRAYING THE WORD

This is where we discover God’s perfect and agreeable will by discovering with the Spirit’s help what the Word of God already says about whatever issue we are praying about. Praying ‘Word shaped prayers’ is the key to getting ourselves the breakthrough particular where there are ‘spiritual blockages’. Immerse yourself in His Word and let it help equip your meaningful ‘partnership’ praying.

PRACTICALITIES

First – commit to this time of soaking and seeking with a definite yes and amen! Tell the Lord, as a part of this church – I’m involving!

Don’t beat yourself up if it doesn’t always seem to go well, remember it’s about a partnership not performance!

Fasting is a biblical principle that helps us focus on God. You may be led to do 

this during this season; either food, t.v., computers etc. don’t forget if you’re on medication don’t miss food without a doctor’s permission. 

Ideally have a regular place – your ‘Secret Place’ with the Lord. Get comfortable, try to remove all distractions, always begin with praise and thanksgiving and always end with praise and thanksgiving. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you to avoid meaningless and repetitive phrases. And never forget – He’s your Father you’re His child and he invited you to the partnership meeting. You’re wanted and needed!

Don’t forget –

keep on praying

keep on watching

keep on thanking.

WEEKLY PRAYER THEMES

These are the prayer themes along with some key scriptures, to help create ‘Word-shaped Praying’ that we want us, as a church, to bring before the Lord as shown on the days below knowing that together we are seeking to fulfil the biblical mandate to be:

ONE BODY IN ONE SPIRIT CALLED IN ONE HOPE OF OUR CALLING

MONDAYS  –  KNOWING GOD

John 17:3 – Ephesians 1:5-23 – Philippians 3:8-11 – Ephesians 3:14-21

TUESDAYS – FAMILY AND COMMUNITY

Acts 2:38-39 – Deuteronomy 28:1-14 – 2 Corinthians 4:3-6

WEDNESDAYS – KING’S CHURCH

Matthew 16:17-19 – Ephesians 5:27 – Ephesians 2:19-22

THURSDAYS – THE PEOPLE OF GOD AND THEIR WITNESS

Acts 1:8  – 1 Peter 2:4-10 – Acts 8:4-8 – Acts 28:7-10

FRIDAYS – GOVERNMENT AND AUTHORITIES

Romans 13:1-8 – 1 Peter 2:13-17 – Proverbs 14:34

SATURDAYS – PERSONAL NEEDS

Matthew 6:33 – Philippians 4:19 – Psalm 103: 1-5

SUNDAYS –   THANKSGIVING

Psalm 107: 1-3 – Psalm 100:1-5 – Ephesians 5:15-20

These scriptures form only a very small portion of the truths that God has to reveal to us; therefore, go on your own ‘Word-search’ and find for yourself the life changing insights God has for you in His Word.

DECLARATIONS AND FAITH CONFESSIONS

These are here to help us particularly when we are in that ‘Secret Place’ with the Lord to affirm in His Presence what we believe, expect and to strengthen our confidence that He is hearing and answering our faith-filled prayers.

I have adapted some well known passages of scripture and personalised them so that as you read you place yourself within the scripture as a believer. 

I will not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, I present my requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard my heart and my mind in Christ Jesus.  Phil4:6-7. NIV                                                           

All things for which I pray and ask, I believe I have received them, therefore they are mine. Mark 11:24 NKJ (adapted)

If I ask anything in His Name, He will do it.  John 14:14 NKJ (adapted)

My God shall supply all my needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Phil 4:19 NKJ (adapted)

And I know that in all things God works for my good because I love Him,  and I have been called according to His purpose.Rom 8:28. NIV (adapted)                                                                                                                                 

Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all I ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within me. Eph 3:20 NIV (adapted)

As I ask I will receive, as I seek I will find, as I knock doors will open for me. Matt 7:7 NKJ (adapted)                                                                      

And he who searches my heart knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for me as one of God’s people, in accordance with the will of God      Romans 8:27 NIV (adapted)

The King’s Centre will be open for Private Prayer in November on Monday, Wednesday and Friday 8am – 4pm and 7pm – 9pm.