How Shall We Begin 2021?

David Staff   -  

On Our Knees…Together

Israel Gaither, the former national commander for the Salvation Army, directed this as an approach to instilling workers with a sense of mission:

  • Begin the day with prayer.
  • Organizations involve humans, and humans sometimes falter.
  • Leaders should pick up those who have fallen but also have the option to fire them.
  • Serving leadership is active leadership, not a mantra.
  • Guard against mission creep.  Be courageous to say no to secondary things.

When asked about the first tip, “Can it be that simple? Can everyone stay out of trouble with a morning prayer?” Gaither responded, “I serve in a world weakened by sin. That’s the context in which I serve, and I have to ask God to protect me — my mind, my thinking, and my behavior. Is that the path to help an organization do what is right?  Yeah, I think that’s the way to do it.”

Recently, one of our godly Missional Leadership Board members urged the group, “We must pray.  The days ahead are too important.  We must develop a passion to seek God and pray.”


Have you given any thought to how you are going to start the first year of the next decade (i.e., 2021).  The past year, 2020, was a remarkably tough finish to the 2nd decade of the 21st century.  If nothing else, we ALL should be humbled by our fragility.  Our lives are a wisp of smoke, so utterly dependent on the sustaining grace of God.  With this in mind, how are you and I going to begin 2021?

The Spirit is directing us – Christ Community Church – to make January 2021 a month of prayer. 

Specifically, we must do the following. 

  1. REPENT over our independent prayerlessness, and SEEK GOD in a fresh, urgent hungry way.
  2. Ask the Holy Spirit TO STRENGTHEN anew the UNITY of our CHURCH BODY
  3. Call on the Lord Jesus TO EMPOWER AND DIRECT our pastoral leadership TRANSITION
  4. Beg the Lord for RENEWED IMPACT and FRUITFULNESS in our mission in Story County and around the world

With your help, cooperation, and participation, Christ Community Church as a team will devote January 3 through 31 as a special season of prayer.  There will be specially called prayer meetings (in-person or zoom participation), daily dose encouragements to pray, and a special call to Connect Groups to be on their knees together.

Look for details coming your way through our CCC communication channels.


Let’s not assume this will be easy.  Our spiritual enemy will offer us a thousand lesser alternatives and excuses not to get low before the Lord.

“The moment you wake up each morning,” C.S. Lewis once observed, “all your wishes and hopes for the day rush at you like wild animals. And the first job each morning consists in shoving it all back; in listening to that other Voice, taking that other point of view, letting that other, larger, stronger, quieter life come flowing in.”

Each morning is a particularly important time.  John Bunyan, author of Pilgrim’s Progress, noted “He who runs from God in the morning will scarcely find Him the rest of the day.”   Certainly, the converse is true as well.  He who runs to God in the morning will have Him as one’s companion for the rest of the day.

Even as we move through our important worship celebrations of our Lord’s incarnation and birth, it is important we look around the 2020 corner and say to God, ourselves, and one another, “Let’s begin the new year…and decade…in prayer.” 

“Pray,” Martin Luther, “as if everything depends on God, then work as if everything depends on you.”