The best way I know to start the year off is to stir myself up through prayer. The picture the Apostle Paul gave to Timothy is to “fan the flame from within.” That flame is the “charisma” you received when you were baptized with the Holy Spirit. God has blessed us with such a wonderful advantage by giving us a supernatural means to pray out His plan for our lives, the ability to speak in other tongues. Paul defined it as praying in the Spirit.
I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you when I laid my hands on you. For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and sound mind. So never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord. And don’t be ashamed of me, either, even though I’m in prison for him. With the strength God gives you, be ready to suffer with me for the sake of the Good News. For God saved us and called us to live a holy life. He did this, not because we deserved it, but because that was his plan from before the beginning of time-to show us his grace through Christ Jesus.—2 Timothy 1:6-9 NLT
When you pray in the spirit you will fan the flame within and you will notice a profound effect of praying in the Spirit in your life. God’s power is released into your weaknesses, God’s love takes control of your actions, and it has a calming effect on the mind when under pressure. This is my personal strategy anytime I need to overcome weakness, challenges to my love walk, or overwhelming circumstance that try to paralyze me—I pray in the spirit!
But on another note, it gives me a boldness to share my faith with others, and have a word in due season for someone who is need of God’s love. This is the end game—your life intersecting with those who need the Gospel. Praying in the spirit will make you a witness for Jesus. It puts you in a position where the Spirit of God is leading and directing your life. He will lead you across the paths of those who are searching because the Holy Spirit has come to convince sinners of their need for the Savior!
Finally, God saved and called us to live a life of purpose. To live holy is to live out God’s purpose for your life and it’s not based on a set of disciplines it’s based on knowing your identity in Christ. When you realize that you are a new creation and the slate has been wiped clean and that God has made you holy and blameless by the blood of Jesus, you begin to live life with a higher purpose and gratitude in your heart. Here again God has given us this wonderful advantage through the baptism of the Spirit to pray out our future. If you will start the year off by praying in the spirit, you can expect a great year ahead! Take time to pray! Join us at IFC for our 21 days of prayer and fasting, click on the link for details—21 DAYS