Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For yours is the kingdom, and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.
Yes, Father, hallowed be your name. Magnify the glory of your eternal Son, Jesus Christ, in this place this morning. Use us, Lord, to advance the gospel to our neighbors and to the nations. We praise you that you have provided so lavishly for us – from food to eat, clothes to wear, friendships to enjoy. You provide us with material riches and, even more, every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places. Holy Spirit, remind us of all that we have in Christ Jesus. We praise you, Holy Spirit, that you are our seal and our guarantee of our heavenly inheritance. Shape our deepest loves and longings to match what you, our great God loves; propel us by the beauty and brilliance of Jesus.
This morning we pray for those of us who are hurting. We pray for those who are wrestling with the shame and guilt of sin. Cleanse us in Christ Jesus we pray. Work true confession and godly repentance into the depths of our being that we might drag our sin form the darkness into the light, where it will die. We pray for those who are crippled by sin committed against them. Use the gospel, Lord, to remind us who we are and whose we are – we belong to you God, our gracious King who lavishes love upon us.
We pray for those struggling with unmet godly desires. Give grace and contentment to those who desire good things like a godly spouse or children. Give us the wisdom how to truly desire good things, but not be defined by our unfulfilled longings. Take our real emotions and give us understanding how to embrace our emotions but not let our emotions alone determine how we feel in light of the truth, who is Jesus Christ. For those who of us desire to have joy in Christ, but our souls are dry and weary, move in us, we ask. For the fame of Jesus Christ, plant the seeds of joy deep down in the fertile soil of our hearts, then Holy Spirit, bring forth growth as you point us to the Living Water of Jesus Christ.
This morning, as your blood-bought children, we confess before you our own sinfulness. We have doubted your power to protect us. We have pursued immorality through worthless media. We have fantasized about relationships in ways dishonorable to Christ and disrespectful to your image bearers. We repent, O Lord. Forgive us, we pray. We idolize sports letting them determine our joy or lack of it. We idolize fashion dressing in certain ways to gain the approval or acknowledgement of others. We have arrogantly judged fellow church members. We have impatiently disciplined our children. We confess misusing food, either in gluttonous overeating looking for ultimate comfort in a created thing, or under-eating finding our identity in something or someone other than Jesus. We repent, O Lord. Forgive us, we pray. Forgive our lack of faith; have mercy on our weakness. Grant that through the tears of repentance we may see more clearly the brightness and glories of the saving cross. Help us rest in Christ, who died and rose again that we might be made new, clothed in indelible robes of righteousness.
Grant us gospel unity. So unite us to Christ Jesus that we are deeply bound to each other. Give us the humility and self-control to put our personal preferences below gospel priority. Holy Spirit, fill us afresh that we live in a manner worthy of the gospel. Let us not be controlled by the fear of others. Remind us of our secure position in Jesus so that we are confident in him and speak boldly of him. Give us wise winsome words that fearlessly proclaim the one true gospel, the reality of heaven, the horrors of hell, and the daily hope found in Jesus.
We pray for those who oppose us. Give us the grace to wish good for those who mock us and ridicule us and slander us. Save our opponents that we might go from enemies to brothers and sisters in Christ. We pray for those who persecute our brothers and sisters for declaring the supremacy of Jesus Christ. We pray for the advancement of the gospel among ISIS, Al Qaeda, the Taliban, Al-Shabaab, and Boko Haram. In scandalous grace, bring saving faith to the leaders and followers of these terrorist organizations. You saved us, and you can save them. Father, in your sovereign glory, turn these men and women from persecuting the church to planting gospel churches. We pray for the North Korean government leaders and tribal leaders in Somalia who savagely oppress those who speak of Christ. In your kindness, bring them to repentance, that they themselves would be willing to suffer for the gospel. Whatever you do Lord, in the name of Jesus, we plead that you would restrain the evil these groups & governments are able to accomplish.
We thank you that we labor alongside other faithful churches here in DC. Bless 4th Presbyterian and Redeemer Arlington and Del Ray Baptist. Advance the gospel through Waterfront Church and McLean Bible and All Nations DC. We also pray that you would continue to use DC127 and the Porch to bring the gospel to the marginalized. And we pray for our brother Nathan as he preached the word to us. Fill him with your Spirit. Give him a holy ambition and passionate zeal mixed with pastoral tenderness as he unfolds the banquet feast of your word that our hungry souls might be satisfied in Jesus Christ, who is the bread of life. Amen.
For the past year, our brother, Hector, was taking part in an internship at Restoration. We sat down with him to discuss what he did during this time and what he learned. Listen in to be encouraged at how your investment helps mature disciples that they might make disciples.
Almighty Father, eternal Son, life-giving Spirit, we marvel at your majesty. Triune God, unfathomable in all your perfections, beauty beyond comprehension, grace that overwhelms our soul, infinitude that boggles our mind, mercy that draws us near, love that’s inexhaustible. We worship you. We praise you. How great is our God: matchless, unparalleled, incomparable, unequaled, unrivaled, unending, from everlasting to everlasting all glory and power and dominion and honor be unto your great, holy name.
O Jesus Christ, meek and humble of heart, hear us, intercede for us. We come boldly in prayer not because of our merit, but because of the mercy shown to us in your death and resurrection. We will not be at all ashamed because the gospel is the power of salvation, reconciling us back to our Maker, our Father. Lord Jesus Christ, we pray that you would be honored in our bodies, whether by life or by death. Holy Spirit, give us the wisdom and desire and holy ambition to live with every fiber of our being longing to seek the good of others and the glory of Jesus.
We praise you this morning for the adoption of J. As the Ts adjust to a family of four, give them deep joy and marvelous patience. We praise you for their sacrificial, gospel-motivated love and ask for your blessing upon their home. Bring both J and J to faith in Jesus at a young age, and use their lives to magnify Jesus. Father, we praise you that J’s birth mother chose life. Surround her with others who would comfort her and care for her and most importantly minister the gospel to her.
We pray for J and T. As they get ready to leave for Korea, flood their hearts with peace that surpasses all understanding. We praise you for the logistical details that have fallen into place. We praise you that P’s birth mom chose life. Surround her with others who would comfort her and care for her and most importantly minister the gospel to her. As J and T meet their son, continue to lavish your grace upon them that they might love with the patience and sacrifice with which they have been love; and may P come to know this love as it’s lavished upon him and modeled for him.
Father, we thank for the many stories of other-oriented love among the brothers and sisters of our church. Make us a church that is marked with a reckless, radical, other-oriented, agape, gospel love that’s compelling to the world around us. Use us Lord, make our labors fruitful helping each other progress in our faith and have deep abiding joy in Christ Jesus. Spur us on that our love might abound more and more with knowledge and all discernment. Fill us with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ.
Use us to advance the gospel, we pray. Give us a deep confidence in Jesus that we might speak boldly about Jesus. For the glory of your name, Lord, use our corporate gatherings and community groups and our gospel-driven lives to bring the good news of Jesus to those who have never heard, or who have heard but don’t yet believe. Work mightily among the students at American University – bring many to faith in Christ through Cru, Chi Alpha, American Friends. Advance your gospel to more and more residents at Friendship Terrace. Use the Ms to see many come to faith in Jesus and join their church plant. Do this Lord, for the glory of Christ and the joy of your family.
Father, your word commands us to pray “for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.” And so we come praying for those who have been sovereignly elected and appointed to lead this country. Grant wisdom and a sense of justice to all leaders around the world who are charged with serving people made in your image. We pray for president Donald Trump. Bend his heart toward true justice and righteousness for all people. Give him a posture that rightly balances strong conviction and sincere kindness. Surround President Trump with men and women who give wise counsel that promotes the dignity and equality of all people – men and women, all races and ethnicities, all religious backgrounds, all sexual orientations, all ages – from the womb until natural death.
Lord, keep us from prideful gloating in the successes or failures public figures. Forgive us for wishing ill on others. Forgive us for slandering others with our words. Lord, keep us from despair when laws and regulations and everyday circumstances don’t turn out like we desire and hope. When we disagree with others, give us the grace to do it in a way that’s honorable and respectful, remembering that all people are created in your image. Let us, Lord, let us as Christians be a light of hope and happiness. We praise you that King Jesus is on the throne right now and forever more. We praise you that he is reigning and he is soon returning to restore all things back to perfection.
We look at Christ and we marvel. His kindness leads us to repentance. His grace melts our stony hearts. We confess our sin and idolatry. Instead of trusting in the death of Jesus Christ, we have tried to work of our guilt. You give us everything we need, yet we often remain unsatisfied. Forgive us, O Lord. We have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We have disciplined our children out of personal anger and impatience. Forgive us, O Lord. We have not forgiven others as we have been forgiven. We have been deaf to your call to serve, as Christ served us. We have grieved your Holy Spirit. We have doubted your love for us, despite all you’ve done. Forgive us, O Lord. Wash us clean. Create in us a new heart, and renew a right sprit within us. We praise you for the rest and reconciliation that’s ours in Christ, in whose name we pray. Amen.
*This is the second of two posts about Hector’s internship program. If you missed part one, click here!*
I have been praying and thinking deeply about what I will be doing now that I have completed the internship. It has been a joy to witness how God has transformed my heart to serve Him for His glory.
Kathryn and I have decided to remain as members of the Restoration Church family where God has surrounded us with a wonderful community, full of brothers and sisters who have loved us and cared for us deeply through thick and thin. We feel God has us here for a reason, and we will be here until God calls us somewhere else. So, we will continue to humbly host and serve our Community Group on a weekly basis.
I also plan to serve God through the ministry of Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) here in NW DC. FCA is a ministry that partners with local churches and uses the platform of sports as a way to influence middle school, high school, and college athletes and coaches by exposing them to Christ. I have been very encouraged by Nathan’s involvement as a chaplain for American University’s wrestling team. And lately, God has been growing a sense of urgency in my heart for the need to reach middle school, high school, and college students and coaches for Christ.
By God’s grace, I applied and was accepted as a Part Time Area Representative for FCA. My desire is to work with schools and college campuses in the NW DC area (such as American University, Georgetown University, Woodrow Wilson, St. Alban’s) and also schools in the Mount Pleasant and Columbia Heights areas.
A few weeks ago, I was in Kansas at FCA’s headquarters for training on support raising and learned that FCA started international ministries in 2013. Since then, it has developed helpful resources in Spanish, which I believe would be helpful to support the Molero’s efforts as they begin to plant the Spanish-speaking church.
So, I would like to invite you to join me in my prayers for God to continue using our church and us to make disciples who will delight in the supremacy of Christ in NW DC and beyond!
Hello Restoration Church family!
For those of you who I haven’t had a chance to meet yet, my name is Hector Feliciano, and I have been member of Restoration Church for about 4 years. I am married to Kathryn Feliciano, and we are humbled to host/lead a Community Group on Thursday nights.
I am writing to you to thank you for your support during my internship at Restoration Church over the course of this past year. The internship has officially come to an end, and by God’s grace, I passed! 🙂
I would like to give you an overview of the internship. So, if you have seen The Karate Kid movies, imagine me as the young student painting fences, waxing cars, sanding decks, and catching flies with chopsticks. There was nothing fancy happening in this internship. But, it sure helped me cultivate an increasing passion to know and enjoy the triune God we worship together. As a result of this internship, I was able to:
- Develop a better working understanding of the Gospel and its primacy in the life of the local church
- Develop a better understanding for what “success” might look like in ministerial life
- Develop a philosophy of ministry that would guide my life and/or the life of a local church
- Develop a plan for potentially planting a healthy, local church in the future
But, what was I actually doing for a whole year as a church intern? I would put it this way: I was a regular church member on steroids. Here’s a breakdown of what I did:
- I read and wrote a lot (seriously, there were a LOT of reading and writing assignments—wonderful books though, and I’m happy to share any of them with you!!)
- I met with one of the pastors each week
- I attended all the members’ meetings, elders’ meetings, and membership introduction classes as well as the men’s retreat and the elder’s retreat
- I memorized and reflected on Scripture
- I visited other local church services and surveyed pastors from other churches about ways in which they practice certain disciplines within the church life
The internship was simply an extension of our church’s mission of making disciples who delight in the supremacy of Christ. I am humbled by the opportunity, and I am grateful for the ways in which I was trained and equipped to serve and lead with more boldness, passion, courage, humility, and love for Christ crucified and resurrected.
A Restoration Church family is headed overseas to finalize the adoption of their son. Listen to learn more about why they are doing this and how you can serve them as they do. As you listen, you’ll be encouraged to love God more for your own adoption into His family.
What is the Bible all about? Why should we study it? How should we study it? Listen to these T2 classes as we discuss “Making Sense of the Bible.”
What is the Bible all about? Why should we study it? How should we study it? Listen to these T2 classes as we discuss “Making Sense of the Bible.”