Day 1 – Forty Days and Forty Nights

Hello, new friend! Though we’ve never met, I can just imagine you sitting across my kitchen table relaxing with a cup of tea or French-press Columbian coffee. (OK, yes, I am a coffee snob!) Anyway, I would love to hear your story and get to know your heart. I wish I could be there to laugh with you in your joys and cry with you when your heart aches. Most of all, it would be wonderful to pray with you when you suffer because in some ways, we all suffer. Until we get to heaven life will never be perfect! We long to see change in ourselves, in those we love, and in the world around us.

Sometimes it’s hard to believe that real transformation is possible. We try to fix ourselves, and we end up feeling helpless and defeated. At times our prayers seem to go unanswered. Though we might not want to admit it, sometimes it’s difficult to believe that we serve a God who listens and cares.

Well, although we can’t see each other right now, I hope you know that I’m in your corner. I may not know your name or understand your pain, but I know the One who does. If we invite Him to join us at the table, He will change the atmosphere of the room and even the atmosphere of our hearts! Our coffee hour can become an altar of worship as we turn to the Lord in our time of need.

As we seek God instead of focusing on our problems, He will begin to do that which He does best’transformation! However, before He can make our messy lives look a little more like heaven, He must prepare our hearts to receive the change He desires to bring. Will you join with me and set aside the next forty days to seek the Lord? Let’s ask Him to make us into new wineskins (see Mark 2:22) so that He can fill us with His new wine!

In the Bible, God often brought change in forty days, forty weeks, or forty years. It rained forty days and nights during the great flood. Noah waited another forty days before opening a window in the ark. Moses was on the mountain for forty days seeking God, and his face shone for forty days after he came down. The Israelites spent forty years in the wilderness, one year for each day they explored the promised land. Jesus fasted for forty days in the desert, was in the tomb for forty hours after His crucifixion, and was seen on the earth forty days after His resurrection. Even a baby spends forty weeks in the womb growing from an embryo into a fully formed human being!

In each of these scenarios the Lord used forty days, weeks, or years to bring new birth, vision, and transformation. Though there is no magic in any number, if we commit ourselves to seeking God earnestly for the next forty days, He will cleanse our hearts and bring transformation exactly where we need it. He can and He will make all things new!

Let’s ask the Lord to join us at the table . . .

Father, I am tired of living at a level that is so much lower than You created me to live. I’ve tried, but I just can’t seem to change myself or those around me! Sometimes there is little I can do to change my circumstances. Lord, please prepare my heart for the change You long to bring in me and through me! In Jesus’ name, amen.

  1. We have asked the Lord to prepare us for change. What are some things we can do to prepare our hearts for this change?
  2. Sometimes, we just need to know that we are not alone and that others have gone through what we are experiencing. How can we be an encouragement to someone else who is struggling today?
  3. Make a list of the areas where you would like to see transformation in your life. Will you commit to praying for these things every day for the next forty days?