The First 15

Tuesday January 5, 2021

by First Methodist Mansfield

Opening Prayer

As I enter into this time of prayer and reflection, I pause to be still; to breathe slowly; to recenter my scattered senses upon the presence of God.
Lord, as we enter into a brand new year, help me to be still and find you in these peaceful moments. Amen.

Scripture Reading

Acts 4:23-31

23 On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Sovereign Lord,” they said, “you made the heavens and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. 25 You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David:

 ‘Why do the nations rage

    and the peoples plot in vain?

26 The kings of the earth rise up

    and the rulers band together

against the Lord

    and against his anointed one.’

27 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. 28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. 29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”
31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.


2021 is a year for bold faith. For such a time as this, as so many are struggling with depression, addiction, low-self worth, fear, despair, etc., we need to rely on the power of God to proclaim and live out the gospel of Jesus Christ with boldness. I want to see God shake the cities where we live because of our bold prayers and faith. Notice how the people gathering with Peter and John to pray ask God to consider the threats they face? They don’t ask God to take the threats away.

In spite of all the threats you face in your life, in spite of all that threatens the church, what does speaking God’s word with boldness look like for you? Who comes to mind that needs to hear God’s word? Begin praying that the Holy Spirit would do a work in you that helps others enter into the family of God. The harvest is plenty but the workers are few.  

Closing Prayer

When you are finished with your time of reflection, close out this time with this prayer. 

Holy Spirit, powerful Consoler, sacred Bond of the Father and the Son, Hope of the afflicted, descend into my heart and establish in it your loving dominion. Enkindle in my tepid soul the fire of your Love so that I may be wholly subject to you. We believe that when you dwell in us, you also prepare a dwelling for the Father and the Son. Deign, therefore, to come to me, Consoler of abandoned souls, and Protector of the needy. Help the afflicted, strengthen the weak, and support the wavering. Come and purify me. Let no evil desire take possession of me. You love the humble and resist the proud. Come to me, glory of the living, and hope of the dying. Lead me by your grace that I may always be pleasing to you. Amen.—St. Augustine 

The First 15

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