Category Archives: Fasting

Prayers for Businessmen (5/14/2019)

My rusty 1975 Chevrolet pickup soon needed brakes so I asked Wayne, a mechanic friend, to fix them. He did me a favor by fixing them on his lunch hour. Afterward, I drove the truck around the block, pressing on the brakes at each corner. Everything seemed okay.

I then moved out onto busy 1st Avenue South, heading toward my apartment. I hit the accelerator, the 350-engine roared to life as the truck quickly picked up speed. The upcoming light changed to red. I stepped on the brakes. The pedal went to the floor. No brakes! I pulled on the emergency brake. Nothing happened!

My hand hit the horn. I swerved out into the oncoming traffic lane to avoid slamming into the stopped cars ahead of me. The oncoming cars swerved out of my way while honking their horns and shaking their fists at me. I somehow missed everyone and turned into a parking lot with an uphill grade. The truck coasted to a stop. I shifted out of gear.

I sat there with my heart beating like a base drum inside a cave. The Holy Spirit then whispered to my heart: “Just like your truck was out of control, the American economy is also out of control.”

The Holy Spirit certainly had my attention at that moment, but was the American economy really out of control at that time in the spring of 1992?

The year 1992 was not a bad economic year. Dow Jones averages bottomed out at 3,137, inflation was a paltry three percent, unemployment stood at 6.8 percent, and gasoline cost $1.13 a gallon. The year ended up marking the beginning of an economic boom in America, which continued through the year 2000 with the Dow Jones rising to 11,750, inflation bottoming out at 2.1 percent, unemployment dropping to 4.5 percent, and gas inching up to $1.17 per gallon.

Even after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the American economy continued in a boom cycle. Houses, commodities, and stock markets skyrocketed.

But yet, the Holy Spirit spoke to me in the present tense back in 1992. What’s with that?

Our Lord is a now God. He sees the future, just like He sees the present. It is always now to Him. Thus, when He speaks prophetic words to us, we must consider His present tense words may be for the future, and not for the present. This is why we need discernment when we judge prophetic words.

Oh yes… What happened to my brakes, right?

Wayne forgot to put the cover back on the brake reservoir. The first few times I stepped on the brakes, the brake fluid sprayed onto my engine, emptying the reservoir. There was no fluid when I hit the brakes at the red light.

Wayne felt bad, but I told him an angel held a hand over his eyes so he would not notice the cover missing from the brake reservoir. He laughed until he realized I was serious about the angel’s handiwork.

(An excerpt from The Hunt for Larry Who by Larry Nevenhoven, © 2014, Amazon eBook)

It’s my belief this prophetic word will soon occur. Let’s prepare ourselves now.

My prayer for today:

Lord, I pray You give businessmen the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of You and Your ways. I also pray that the eyes of their understanding are enlightened so they may know what You’re really saying with all prophetic words.” (Based on Ephesians 1:17-18).

Join us on Tuesdays to fast and pray for American men in the marketplace.

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Prayers for Godly Leaders to Arise in America (5/9/2019)

 

Quite a few years ago, Carol and I attended Metro Christian Fellowship in Kansas City, at which the senior pastor was Mike Bickle. Today, Bickle oversees the International House of Prayer (IHOPKC).

Mike Bickle is a dynamic teacher, but what I remember most about him was what he did on the Sundays when he didn’t bring a message to the congregation of 3,500 people. He helped park cars in the parking lot. Rain, snow, sunshine or whatever, he was out there directing traffic.

Bickle’s teachings have blessed me, but none of them have changed my life as much as seeing him standing out there in that parking lot.

My prayer today:

Lord, raise up servant leaders in America who are willing to humble themselves and wash other believers’ feet just like You did as an example for Your disciples. (Based on John 13:3-17)

Join with me on Thursdays to fast and pray for the Body of Christ in America.

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Prayers for Businessmen (5/7/2019)

“The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, these entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also” (2 Timothy 2:2).

Alfred, an owner of a company with one hundred employees, read the above verse and decided to act on it. He told his employees, “I attended a seminar that changed my life, and I’d like to try to share with you what God is teaching me. So once a week I’m going to shut down our plant for an hour, and I’m going to share what God’s Word says I should be doing for you. The meetings are voluntary, but everyone is welcome. From this point on, I want you to hold me responsible to be the kind of Christian employer that God expects me to be.”

The next Monday, when the plant stopped for the meeting, every one of Alfred’s employees was there. He began to share what he should be doing as a Christian businessman. Sometimes he would say, “I can’t implement this immediately or it would ruin our company, but eventually I am going to do this to the best of my ability.”

One of the programs Alfred wanted to implement was a benevolence program to help employees with special financial needs, such as medical bills, family crises, or special education expenses by providing company- sponsored grants.

To do this would first require reeducating the employees so that those who didn’t receive this benefit would not resent those who did. It also would require establishing an employee committee to oversee the fund and evaluate the candidates. But Alfred was determined to get it started.

About a year after the meetings began, Alfred asked me [Larry Burkette] to speak to his employees. At one point in my talk I asked, “How many in this room have personally accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior?” Out of more than 100 employees, about 25 hands went up.

A year later I went back. This time I asked, “During the last year, how many of you have personally accepted Jesus Christ as a result of the influence of your boss?” Hands went up throughout the room. In one year, more than 60 people had come to the Lord through Alfred’s influence, and he didn’t even know it. Evangelizing his employees hadn’t been his goal. His goal had simply been to become more Christlike in his business.

The apostle Paul tells us we reap in the measure that we sow. Alfred learned that truth when he ran into some business and financial difficulties.

During an economic downturn, business got so bad he needed a large infusion of money in order to continue operating. The high interest rates at that time made borrowing out of the question. Word of the company’s financial problems spread to Alfred’s employees, several of whom got the idea of banding together to lend Alfred the money (almost $300,000) themselves. They raised the needed funds from among the other employees and provided Alfred with an interest-free loan.

Alfred was simply reaping what he had sown. When he began following God’s principles, he didn’t know that more than half of his employees would accept Christ as their Savior through his witness or that his employees would decide to lend him $300,000 interest free. He had simply sown biblical principles such as “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you,” and he reaped the benefits of those principles.

Employees, especially unsaved employees, have the tendency to believe what they see rather than what they hear. If what we do doesn’t match up with what we say, they will usually discount our words.

(The above powerful excerpt is from Business by the Book by Larry Burkett, © 2010, Thomas Nelson or you can read a free PDF of it here.)

My prayer today:

Lord, help Christian men who work in the marketplace to be doers of Your Word and not just hearers only, so that we do not deceive ourselves into thinking we are following in Your footsteps. (Based on James 1:22)

Join us on Tuesdays to fast and pray for American men in the marketplace.

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Prayers for America (5/2/2019)

Today is the National Day of Prayer. This year’s theme is “Love one Another.”

I had a nighttime vision a few years back where I was taken to a prison cell in North Korea. There in a small cell was a naked young Christian lady. She had been beaten, repeatedly raped by prison guards, and was starving. The prison cell was freezing cold and she had no blankets or cot to sleep on. She sat huddling herself on the cold cement floor, weeping  her heart out.

The vision was so real that I could feel the cold and the same fear she felt. As I looked on, I wondered why I was there. What could I do?

Then, the Holy Spirit spoke to me: “Will you trade places with her?”

The first thought to hit my head — If I trade places with her, no one will ever hear of me again. My wife won’t know what happened to me nor my children nor my grandchildren nor anyone. All of my hopes and plans will end in this cell. My life will be over forever.

Yet, I knew the Holy Spirit was waiting for an answer. I couldn’t postpone it forever.

Finally, I said, “Yes, Lord, I’ll trade places with her.”

The vision instantly ended.

But my first thoughts still haunt me. You see, I cared more about my personal welfare than about hers. That was not love.

Paul the apostle spoke about his love for the Jews, the ones who were his main enemies:

For my people, my Jewish brothers and sisters, I would be willing to be forever cursed—cut off from Christ!—if that would save them. (Romans 9:3)

You see, Paul was willing to spend a lifetime in Hell if it would save his Jewish brothers and sisters. That’s the same love Jesus showed us on the cross. It’s called agape love.

My prayer today:

Lord, pour out Your Spirit on us American believers so that we no longer seek our own welfare but the welfare of our neighbors and countrymen even if it means our deaths.

Join with me on Thursdays to fast and pray for the Body of Christ in America.

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Prayers for Businessmen (4/30/2019)

What’s our number one goal as Christian businessmen in the marketplace?

To be the next Bill Gates? Or Steve Jobs? Or Jeff Bezos? Or John D. Rockefeller? Or Henry Ford? Or whomever?

No, absolutely not!

Our number one goal is to wholeheartedly follow Jesus. Anything less than this and we should consider ourselves unsuccessful.

You see, when we stand before Him at the Judgment Seat of Christ, Jesus won’t look at our bank accounts or our business successes in the marketplace, He will only look at one thing: did we deny ourselves, pick up our cross daily and follow Him.

We businessmen should look at ourselves in the mirror and make up our minds now. Will we will go 100% for Jesus and His ways? Or are we going to sell ourselves out to the world system and its ways? Halfway and lukewarm doesn’t work with Jesus. It’s either all-in or all-out!

Do you remember Demas?

Demas has deserted me because he loves the things of this life and has gone to Thessalonica… (2 Timothy 4:10)

Maybe Demas was a businessman. Maybe he enjoyed attending businessmen’s breakfasts and giving his testimony about how the Lord had prospered him. But there came a point in time, when he had to choose to be all-in or all-out. His decision is forever written down for all to see.

One day, the books for our lives will be opened for everyone to see the real us. Nothing will be hidden. We will then have to live for all of eternity with what’s written after our names, just like Demas.

My prayer today:

Lord, bring every businessman to a decision point right now about denying ourselves, picking up our cross daily and following You. Then, pour out Your grace on us so we can answer, “Yes,” and then follow You all the days of our lives.

Join us on Tuesdays to fast and pray for American men in the workplace.

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Prayers for Businessmen (4/23/2019)

My emphasis today is on praying specifically for men in the various business arenas. This does not mean I am discounting the importance of women in the workplace because I’m not. But I believe it’s time for American men to quit sitting on the sidelines, to stand up, walk onto the field and be true sons of the living God.

For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. (Romans 8:19)

Our Lord has placed His emphasis on men before.

The last time being the Businessmen’s Prayer Revival of 1857. In this move of the Holy Spirit, businessmen came together over a lunch hour to pray and encourage other men. The outcome of this revival was that 6% of the population of America gave their lives to Christ and believers rededicated their lives to Jesus Christ.

All of this was done outside the confines of traditional religion at the time and without clergy leading the groups. It was a laymen-led move of the Holy Spirit.

My prayer today:

Lord, I ask Your Spirit to open the hearts of American men in the workplace to yearn for fellowship with You and other men so the Kingdom of God’s fruits of righteousness, peace and joy come forth in our nation. (Based on 2 Thessalonians 2:10 and Romans 14:17)

Join us on Tuesdays to fast and pray for American men in the workplace.

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Prayers for Leaving All and Following Jesus (4/18/2019)

When I got saved on May 20, 1985, I almost immediately made up my mind that I wanted to abandon everything and follow Jesus. My reasoning was simple. You see, I had spent thirty-nine years of my life as an unbeliever, much of that as an agnostic, and I didn’t want to meet Jesus at the Judgement Seat of Christ empty-handed, with only excuses in hand for my lukewarm lifestyle.

I also knew me. I knew if I didn’t go 100% for Him, I’d back off into a barely-get-by mode. So, my choice was really one or the other. I chose to sell out for Him as best I could.

My heroes became William Carey, David Brainerd, C. T. Studd, Hudson Taylor, Praying John Hyde, George Mueller, William Booth, Leonard Ravenhill and others. I read every book that I could find on them because I wanted to be like them.

Do you remember the Burundi and Rwanda civil war during the 1990s? Hundreds of thousands of women and children were slaughtered. I asked the Lord to send me there almost daily for weeks because this is what my heroes would have done. Eventually, a prophetic friend of mine stopped by to let me know the Lord wasn’t sending me there. (Just so you know, I told no one about my prayers of wanting to go to Rwanda. No one!)

Instead, it turned out the Lord had different plans for me, long term ones with deserts to cross and mountains to climb. Then I met a wonderful Christian woman and got married in 1996. Wedded bliss, right?

In twenty-three years of marriage, we have moved thirty-five times to nine different states and more than twenty different cities. We felt all of these moves were instigated by the Holy Spirit to follow Jesus.

Well, this morning I was praying for our four children and six grandchildren and it hit me: “I don’t really know our children and grandchildren.”

Oh, I’ve talked to them on the phone and have visited them a few times over the last twenty-three years, but we’ve hardly ever been there for any Christmases, Easters, birthdays, baseball games, school concerts, to babysit them, change diapers and so forth. They’ve grown up and we’ve grown old without them. These years can’t be replaced. They’re gone!

And what were we always doing? Moving and trying to survive.

You can probably imagine how sad and emotional I felt this morning. As I sat there looking at what we’ve missed the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart: “Just know that I have not let one person down who has left all and followed me. Not one!”

I broke down and cried, realizing the Lord has never let us down. I had foolishly looked back at what we had missed, rather than praising Him for what He has done and will do for us.

Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s,30 who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions—and in the age to come, eternal life. (Mark 10:29-30)

My prayer today:

Lord, raise up a generation of believers – young and old – who are willing to turn their backs on everything and follow you, no matter what it costs them.

Join with me on Thursdays to fast and pray for the Body of Christ in America.

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