I find myself the bearer of some bad news today.
Researchers have discredited the idea that 21 days is enough time to create a new habit. Instead, it takes an average of 66 days to form new habits. More than two months instead of three weeks. Is anyone else recalling some failed habit-changing attempts, or is that just me?
But what would happen if we spent time in intentional prayer and fasting for those same 21 days? Thousands of people from the Foursquare community around the world coming to Jesus daily in multiple languages and varying contexts to spend time daily communing with our Father. That’s what we envision happening this January for our annual 21 Days of Prayer + Fasting. Our Foursquare family praying through the name of Jesus, together.
Three weeks may not change a habit, but I do believe it can change the world. Why? Because “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever” (Heb. 13:8, NKJV). And when we pray, as Jesus promised, we know that we touch our Father’s heart (see John 15:7,16).
And that is good news.
Three weeks—it’s just 0.1 percent of our life expectancy. What happens when we dedicate that 0.1 percent of our life to prayer and fasting? We partner with God for the sake of this troubled world in a unique way that is both beautiful and mysterious.
Jesus hasn’t changed. What He taught us remains. Jesus’ promises abide. His faithfulness is unwavering as He accomplishes all the Father entrusted to Him. The Spirit remains in us and with us. Nothing anyone or anything does can change the trajectory of God’s love (see Rom. 8:31-39).
These assurances offer much-needed comfort as we have lived through so much bad news in these past few years. We all see the upheaval in the world and its impact on the people we shepherd. We desperately need a respite, a refresh. But, with so many things going on in our lives and in the world that we can’t control, what can we do about it?
One thing we can do is to choose to spend three weeks of our lives together in prayer and fasting. Three weeks—it’s just 0.1 percent of our life expectancy. And what happens when we dedicate that 0.1 percent of our life to prayer and fasting? We partner with God for the sake of this troubled world in a unique way that is both beautiful and mysterious. So, let’s do this together because Jesus, by His Spirit, says, “Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving” (Col. 4:2, NKJV).
He also commands us to continue making “every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace” (Eph. 4:3, NIV). What is better than to pursue this goal as a global Foursquare community, praying together for God’s Shalom to be made manifest? What better time to do so than through the hope-filled season of a new year!
So, I invite you to not only partake in this time personally, but also to lead your congregation through our 21 Days of Prayer + Fasting, which will begin on Jan. 9, 2023. January also marks the month that Foursquare began in Los Angeles 100 years ago. I cannot think of anything that would honor those who have gone before us more than to begin 2023 devoting ourselves to prayer and fasting as a global Foursquare community.
Throughout our 21 days, we will celebrate that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. Whatever the world is facing, whatever you are personally facing, whatever your church is facing as a community—we hope you will intentionally set aside these 21 days to remember who Jesus is: our Savior, our Baptizer, our Healer and our Soon-Coming King.
This is a unique time each year that we join together with pastors and leaders around the world, as well as our congregations. Make plans to celebrate the good news.
How to join 21 Days of Prayer + Fasting 2023
- Sign up for daily emails, Jan. 9-29.
- Download the Church Resource Kit. It includes the full 21 Days of Prayer + Fasting PDF for you to reproduce for your congregation. Back by popular demand: the Family Moments edition for kids.
- Check out FoursquarePrayer.org for updates and resources for your church.