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Desperate Dependence on God: 2 Chronicles 20:1-30

Northwest Bible Church in Dallas has one of the more unique church mission statements I’ve ever heard: “inviting people into the unexpected joy of desperate dependence on Jesus.” There’s a lot to like about this mission- such as the focus on evangelism and joy, but what really arrested my attention was the phrase “desperate dependence on Jesus.”
The statement forces us to wrestle with the questions: “are we desperate?” and “are we truly dependent upon Jesus?” We may recoil initially at the accusation of being called desperate or dependent. Desperate: in a position of weakness and need, urgently in need of help. Dependence- actually comes from an old French word meaning to hang from. In this sense, dependence is like being in a situation where you are hanging over a pit and the one thing saving you is a rope. Being dependent means that we are insufficient and are relying on something or someone else to live. At Northwest Bible, they proclaim that one thing to be Jesus.
Could we say the same thing? Would you consider yourself to be desperately dependent on Jesus? Most of us would like to immediately and emphatically answer “yes,” but I think further reflection is in order. How do we know we are desperately dependent on Jesus? You could boil it down to just one litmus test- are we demonstrating desperate reliance on the LORD in prayer? Is prayer our first or last option? Is any praise involved in our prayers? Is there unexpected joy in our prayers?
Pastorally speaking, I have to say that I’m concerned about our church. Before I came here there was a committed core of leaders praying weekly for this Christ Community and the new pastor. When I arrived six years ago, we shifted to praying every other week. In the midst of the challenges of COVID, we went online, moved to meeting every month, and then eventually not at all. We used to have a committed core of people praying before the service, asking God to do something supernatural when we gather. The LORD is calling us back to desperate dependence on Him, and to prayer. The question is, “will we listen and respond?”
We are concluding our unanswered prayer series this weekend. From personal experience, I believe it has been necessary and helpful for guidance on how to process the seeming silence of God in response to our prayers. We’ve looked at several unanswered prayers from some places you’d least expect it: Jesus, King David, and the Apostle Paul. We’re going to conclude by looking at an incredible prayer by Jehosophat, King of Judah, and an amazing response by the LORD. There is so much to learn and apply here and I can’t wait to share it with you.
I invite you to join with us this weekend as we embrace our desperate dependence on God together by studying 2 Chronicles 20:1-30.
Our Saturday afternoon service is at 3:30, and our Sunday morning service is at 10:15, where you can join us online or in person. We also have Sunday School classes at 9 for all ages.
Have a great weekend and I look forward to pursuing Christ, Community, and the Great Commission Together with you soon!
-Pastor Nathan Rice

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