It was a great joy to gather as ONE people at the beginning of the New Year, to offer our worship to the King of kings and Lord of lords, from our ‘ASCENDED’ position in the heavenly realms. At the end of 2023, during our period of ‘Advent Ascent’, two of our members were given words of proclamation and prayer. We used these to open our online gathering on Sunday 7th January, at the beginning of this New Year 2024:
A Prayer for Ascended Worship
Lord Jesus, you are seated at the right hand of the Father,
All authority in heaven and earth are yours.
You have ascended to the highest place and been given the name which is above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow and every tongue confess you are the LORD to the glory of the Father.
Lord Christ, God has made us alive with you, and in you, has seated us in heavenly places.
Son of God, you have destroyed the works of the devil. You have triumphed over the [demonic powers, rulers and authorities], exposing and disarming them.
You are worthy of all the worship and praises of all creation and to receive glory and honour and power.
Holy, holy, holy is the LORD God Almighty, who was and is and is to come!
Maranatha – come Lord Jesus.
A Prayer of the Heart
Mirror our hearts to yours O Lord. May we hear your heartbeat and may it remind our hearts muscles how to beat –
the beat of peace, the beat of goodness, the beat of love, the beat of gentleness, the beat of joy, the beat of compassion, the beat of patience, the beat of hope, the beat of surrender, the beat of heaven, the beat of holiness, the beat of grace, the beat of kindness and the beat of oneness – In Jesus name. Amen.
The following is a summary of key points shared during our gathering:
- Our position in Christ is “far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come.” (Eph 1.21). In this ‘ascended’ place, therefore, as we allow ourselves to be overwhelmed by the majesty of God, we can pray that all fears and hindrances to faith fall away from us.
- The Lord’s invitation to us is for a greater fullness and closeness in Him. As we spend time in the Lord’s presence, we become more aware of the power of the depth of God’s love for us. In turn, this increases our capacity to ‘ascend’. The language of our ‘ascended’ worship comes from our intimacy with the Lord. We cannot discover the full depth of God’s love alone. He expresses the warmth of His love in our relationship with others. Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians to know the breadth, length, height and depth of Christ’s love is in the context of being a part of God’s family (Eph 3.14-19). Love has to be shared.
- We are being invited by the Lord to consider the question: “What was in the heart of Jesus when He prayed that we be one?”
- The Lord is exposing the web of deception woven by the enemy. As the exposure takes place, the enemy is frantically increasing activity. This has the capacity to activate areas of fear and insecurity, together with an awareness of turbulence. We are to be still and to wait as the Lord deals with the tangled web.
- As we live in service of the Lord, He is accomplishing a deeper work in and through us, which is usually hidden. The image was given of the construction of an underground tube line, for which highly powerful and precise equipment is used; this is like the work of Holy Spirit in our lives. The meeting point of these two dimensions of our lives – the visible and the hidden – is at the cross of Christ. God’s will is that our lives are conformed to the image of His Son. Our fulfilment is discovered as we join in Paul’s urgent prayer: “I want to know Christ – yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.” (Php 3.10-11). We cannot be united in Christ’s life without being united in His death. This is also the doorway to Joy!
- ‘Gratitude’ – as we praise God for the things not yet visible, we exercise the power of faith to see those things accomplished. Through God’s Spirit, we are called to see and affirm what is not yet manifest. “So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” (2Cor 4.18). We are not bound by what is transient – we can release our fears, insecurities and all other hindrances into the eternal reality of our resurrection freedom in Christ. This is effected in our praise. We need the Lord’s perspective of time: “With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.” (2Pet 3.8).
- “This is the year!” The Lord makes all things new.
Words shared during the gathering:
I will give you a newness of heart. Drink from my cup, drink a new flavour. This flavour will bring a new spirit, a new and greater depth of holiness. I call you to come ever closer to me. Let me fill your hearts to overflowing. Allow all my love to enter and enlarge your hearts. I want you even closer.
“I call you friends because I have made known to you all I want to tell you from My Father.” (Cf. John 15:15). Today, let’s talk about yourselves and how you can draw closer to Me. Find those little moments in the day when you can pause what you are doing and turn to Me to recognise My presence with you, guiding and supporting you through all your days with Me and praise Me for it.
The Unity Prayer
My Adorable Jesus,
May our feet journey together.
May our hands gather in unity.
May our hearts beat in unison.
May our souls be in harmony.
May our thoughts be as one.
May our ears listen to the silence together.
May our glances profoundly penetrate each other.
May our lips pray together to gain mercy from the Eternal Father.