Remembering God’s Blessings

Remember His marvelous works that He hath done, His wonders and the judgements of His mouth.”I Chronicles 16:12 

 

      My husband had a witty elderly aunt and in her last years her memory started fading. After asking the same question three or four times and patiently receiving the same answer, she would look at my husband with a little grin on her face and a sparkle in her eye and say, “The thing that works best about me is my forgetter!”

     Well, I suspect we all have remembering/forgetting problems at various
times in our lives, and we either laugh or groan when this happens.  We may joke about forgetting, but remembering is serious business with God. In the Old Testament, God was continually telling the Children of Israel to
“remember.”

Deuteronomy 6:1 says, 
“Beware,lest thou forget the Lord, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.” God had given them a great deliverance from the hand of Pharaoh through displaying His power and His might in the ten terrible plagues. Then He gave them passage through the Red Sea on dry ground, then He gave them fresh clear water out of the Rock, and then there was the amazing manna that appeared daily without fail for their food. You might think the Children of Israel would never forget these miraculous events, but sadly they did. Judges 8:34 says, “And the Children of Israel remembered not the Lord their God, who had delivered them…..”  Just as soon as Moses, their leader, was gone for only 40 days on Mt Sinai, they built a golden calf to worship.

     Amazing, you might say. How could they forget all that God had done for them so quickly? That answer is easy—–look at ourselves. Like the Children of Israel our selfishness and unconcern carry us along in this fast-paced, instant-information society. We move so quickly that we often do not take time to savor and enjoy and be thankful for the blessings we have received and are receiving, but are frantically grasping at what’s ahead, seeking something new— never satisfied.
But read again what David calls us to do in the above verse from I Chronicles.

     As children of God, it shouldn’t take much effort to recall how God has blessed us and brought us through different trials and been our Guide and
directed our path
and taught us many lessons. Let us carefully take these experiences and build them one upon another, and put them in a “Book of
Remembrance”. (my book is very thick). Then when we have a new trial or a new temptation, or need a new direction, we can draw from these 
past victories and say, “I Remember, what the Lord God did for me in the past, and I trust He will help me now.” This will give us courage, strength, confidence, wisdom, guidance and faith for the present situation. O Lord, may I daily
REMEMBER !

Theme: Remembering To Recall God’s Past Mercies Is The Better Way

Also read: A Thankful Heart

Read Also: Thankful To God



Advertisements
Posted in Encouragement, Guidance for Women, Thankfulness | 8 Comments

Sarah’s Handmaid, Hagar

 I must leave” said Hagar in desperation to herself.  Expecting a child by her master Abraham, Hagar had wrongfully shown an open attitude of contempt toward her mistress, Sarah.  Thus the mistress-servant relationship has been broken and Hagar was treated so harshly by Sarah she felt compelled to “flee from her presence.” Genesis 16:6  Even though Hagar was an Egyptian, while living in the household of Abraham and Sarah, she had been introduced to the One True God.  Now fearful and alone, sitting beside “the spring on the way to Shur, “(Genesis 16:7) an Angel of the Lord came and spoke to her saying “Where have you come from and where are you going?” (Genesis 16:8)  Replying that she was running away from her mistress, the Angel instructed her to go back and humbly submit to Sarah’s control and authority with respect. 

Hagar was then given many promises concerning Ishmael, the son of Abraham, who was to be born to her.  The Lord had heard her and gave attention to her affliction.  Filled with wonder and thanksgiving, she called the Lord who spoke to her,  El-Roi “The God Who Sees Me.” Genesis 16:13. The well was given the name Beer-lahai-roi, The Living One Who Sees Me.  How encouraged we should be to claim this wonderful attribute of God also, and be able to say with Hagar that the Lord is “The God Who Sees Me.”
So Hagar returned to Abraham and Sarah and was obedient to God’s command, being in submission to Sarah again as a maidservant.  This obedience must have continued for 17 years since nothing is recorded in the Bible about Hagar until Isaac, the son of Abraham and Sarah, is about 3 years old.  On the day of Isaac’s weaning, a great feast was made and it was during this feast that Hagar’s son, Ishmael, was mocking Isaac.  Because of this, Hagar and Ishmael were sent into the wilderness, but instead of finding the well as before, they became lost.  When their water was gone, and all looked hopeless to live, Hagar and Ishmael lifted up their voices and wept.  But since the Lord is “The God Who Sees Me” the Bible records in Genesis 21:17-20, that “God heard the lad crying; and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, ‘What is the matter with you, Hagar?’  Do not fear, for God has heard the voice of the lad where he is.  Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him by the hand, for I will make a great nation of him.  Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water—–and gave the lad a drink. God was with the lad, and he grew; and lived in the wilderness, and became an archer.”
 God spoke to Hagar, not once, but twice. As I read about Hagar, I saw how her humble obedience to God, became a great blessing to her. Obedience and humility, two great virtues that a woman of God should seek and strive to obtain.
 
The Better Way: Seeking God’s Will And Way First Before Our Own Desires Is Always The Better Way.
 
As a bonus—some interesting facts:
 
1. Genesis 24:62-67  The well, Beer-lahai-roi, is the place where Isaac first met Rebecca
2. Genesis 25:9  Isaac and Ishmael met together at Abraham’s death to bury him.
 
 
Posted in Encouragement, Guidance for mothers, Guidance for Women, Women of the Bible | 2 Comments

Pastor Appreciation

October is Pastor Appreciation Month.  Take time to read this……..

Romans 16:1-16 “I commend to you our sister Phoebe, a servant of the church at Cenchreae,……… Greet Priscilla and Aquila,my fellow workers in Christ Jesus, who risked their necks for my
life,……..Greet my beloved Epaenetus, who was the first convert to Christ in Asia. Greet Mary, who has worked hard for you. Greet Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen and my fellow prisoners…… Greet Ampliatus, my beloved in the Lord. Greet Urbanus, our fellow worker in Christ, and my beloved Stachys. Greet Apelles, who is approved in Christ. Greet those who belong to the family of Aristobulus. Greet my kinsman Herodion. Greet those in the Lord who belong to the family of
Narcissus. Greet those workers in the Lord, Tryphaena and Tryphosa.
Greet the beloved Persis, who has worked hard in the Lord. Greet
Rufus, chosen in the Lord; also his mother, who has been a mother to
me as well. Greet Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermes, Patrobas, Hermas, and
the brothers who are with them. Greet Philologus, Julia, Nereus and
his sister, and Olympas, and all the saints who are with them. …….All the churches of Christ greet you.”

      Paul did not work alone.  Above we read a long list of men and women who came alongside Paul as his helpers, his friends and his brothers and sisters in Christ. He had many faithful workers, who played an important part in the advancement of the kingdom. This is the Body of Christ, the Church, I Corth 12:27, and is a blending of all the unique gifts and talents of each member.  Ephesians 4:1-6

     We are the Body of which Christ is the Head, the Great Shephard, and our pastors are the Under Shepherds.  Let us come alongside them with constant prayer and much encouragement.  Let us seek out needs and fill them without being asked.  Let us give of our time and our resources.   Let us “be there” for them, standing with them as they fulfill their calling from the Lord to labor in His Vineyard, so they can Shepherd the church, “joyfully spreading the fragrance of Christ.” (II Corth 2:15) to a lost and dying world.  And let us remember always that “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.”  Colossians 3:17

Read also: Dwell Together In Unity

Read also: The Whole Duty Of Man

Posted in Pastor Appreciation | 3 Comments

Joy In Purpose

Psalm 5:3  “My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord, in the morning will I direct my prayer unto Thee and will look up.”

 
     At night I am weary from the days work.  At night I cannot concentrate, for the activities of the day keep interfering and interrupting my thoughts.  At night I fall asleep before my prayer is completed. At night my desire lacks importunity.
    In the morning, my mind is fresh and rested.  In the morning, I come first to the Lord while my thoughts are clear and unencumbered by the days activity.  In the morning I am alert and eager to pray with persistence.  In the morning I do not fall asleep.
    This is my experience.  Rising early is not for everyone, but you’ll never know what a blessing it can be until you try it.  Many years ago, after the Lord saved me, and I was a young Christian, I had the desire to pray and study His Word, but usually once the days activities began I spent most of the day saying to myself, “I’ll read my Bible later.”  But “later” usually never came.  Finally, at the end of the day, I would fall wearily into bed with a brief prayer on my lips as I fell asleep.  I continued in this pattern until a great need arose.  This need caused me to have a heartfelt desire to seek God’s help and draw closer to the Lord by reading my Bible and praying. But as a busy wife and mother there was no “alone” time.  Thus the Holy Spirit caused me to purpose in my heart to arise early so I could spend some quiet time with the Lord.  At first the time was only 15 minutes.  At first I could barely hold my eyes open and I wondered if I was being sensible.  But I had purposed to spend some time alone with the Lord each day.
    Well, it wasn’t long at all before the blessing of such a time became apparent.  Soon the JOY of being alone with the Lord made me eager to arise early and made me want to spend more than just 15 minutes.  I asked the Lord to provide me with more time and He made everything convenient.  Oh, how I thank Him for giving me such a desire.  May He grant you the same desire also.
    Early morning, middle of the day or late at night, may we all purpose anew in our hearts to spend some time alone with the Lord each day.
 
Theme: The Better Way: Purpose and Discipline = Structure and Order= Rest and Strength
 
    
Posted in Encouragement | 7 Comments

Dwell Together In Unity

Psalm 133  “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!  It is like the precious oil upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard:  that went down upon the edge of his robe; It is like the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion; for there the Lord commanded the blessing, even life for evermore.”

 
     For years our family attended a family reunion, to gather together with a family that has met once a year for over 70 year.  These Bible verses always reminded me of this event.  These “brethren”—-these mothers and fathers, aunts and uncles, sisters and brothers, and cousins of all ages, meet in unity to hug, laugh, cry and fellowship, because everyone is related by blood, by adoption or by marriage.  Yes, it is “good” and it is “pleasant” to see each other, to see each other’s children and grandchildren and in some cases great-grandchildren.  God’s Word gives us two descriptive examples to compare this unity to.
     The first one is like the “precious oil” as it is poured on the top of the head and runs down the whole length of the body, even to our feet.  When family comes to together and shares their heritage, it becomes a rich blessing that covers us.  Family provides ties to the past, encouragement for the present, and examples for the future.
     The second comparison of unity is: It is like the dew on top of a mountain that flows down and provides a refreshing blessing.  When we meet in love and talk about Jesus Christ with those that know Him, or share Christ’s love with those that don’t; when we talk about loved ones who have gone on; when we talk about sweet memories of the past, it is a refreshing blessing.
       I have compared these Scripture verses to “kinfolk,” but just as importantly, these verses can also be true of our “spiritual family,” our brothers and sisters in Christ, our church family.  When we serve the Lord in a local church, these people become our family.  We share joys and sorrows, we pray together, and we study God’s Word and fellowship together.  All of these provide that same “precious oil” and “refreshing dew” of unity in the Lord Jesus Christ.  “How good and how pleasant it is.”
 
Theme: The Better Way: Unity is Good:  Unity in the Lord Jesus Christ is Better
 
See also: Forgiveness
 
 
     
Posted in Encouragement | 5 Comments

Brokenness, A Way Of Life

Proverbs 21:4 “….a proud heart….is sin.”

Proverbs 3:7 “Do not be wise in your own eyes.”
 
Rooted in pride is a high view of ourselves
and who we are.

 

In the past I completed a Bible Study on the book “Brokenness” by Nancy Leigh DeMoss.  Having realized that pride is the main hinderance to brokenness, I have written out a list of personal ways to fight pride that I would like to constantly put before my mind. At this time, I am going to open up and share them with you.  The following are not written in any special order, except for the first one:

 
Brokenness, A Way of Life

Ways to fight pride in my life.

 
1.  Regularly recite the Bible verse from Galatians 6:14 “God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
 
2.  When I am criticized or accused wrongly, don’t always try to defend myself.
 
3.  Consider other people’s opinions and views on things and don’t always think I’m right.
 
4.  Keep my mouth shut more.
 
5.  Let other people make their own mistakes and don’t think I should try to spare them.
 
6.   Continually strive to avoid any type of praise or compliments.  When they come, graciously receive them, but give God the glory.
 
7.   Be thankful— have a heart full of thanksgiving.
 
8.   Purpose in my heart that if a revival, generated by the Holy Spirit breaks out  that I would not quench the Spirit in myself.
 
9.    Reach out to others–avoid selfishness–be conscience of the needs of others.
 
10.  Quench a critical spirit.
 
11.  Pray for those we believe are in the wrong, asking God, if it is His will, to change the situation.
 
12.  Seek to love others supremely.
 
13.  Seek a refreshing daily from the Lord.
 
14.   Present Jesus Christ, then stand back. Don’t try to convince others.  Trust that the Holy Spirit will work in others lives.
 
15. Overlook and accept other peoples personalities and peculiarities that are different from my own.  We’re all different–that doesn’t make us either right or wrong, just different.
 
16. Expect and accept and realize that life is continually changing and move with it. There will always be ups and downs, busy and quiet, and sad and happy times.  This lowers stress and creates contentment.
 
17. Be a good listener.
 
18. Forgive, forgive, forgive, for I have been and am continually being forgiven.
 
19. Put before my mind the enormousness of the universe, realizing the awesomeness of God and His power and attributes. Don’t limit God.
 
20. Confess, confess, confess.  Repent, repent, repent.
 
21. Reflect often on God’s goodness and all His blessings.
 
22. Remember His faithfulness to me in
past experiences.
 
23. Be “thirsty” for Christ and His Word.
 
24. Realize that thinking “my way is the right way” is idolatry.
 
25. When critical thoughts enter my mind about others, –stop–don’t let the words come out of my mouth, and pray for them.
 
26. Don’t major on the minors–strive not to get out of sorts over small things that don’t really matter in the long term.
 
27.  Continually pray for the lost.
 
28.  Realize that I cannot bring glory to God if I’m worried about bringing praise to myself.
 
The Better Way: Do all we do for the glory of God.
 
Read also:  Spiritual Dryness
Help children memorize Scripture through song: http://www.thbmm.com/scripture-songs.html
 
Posted in Godly Living, Guidance for Women, Spiritual Dryness | 3 Comments

Through the Flood

Isaiah 43:2  “When you pass through the waters. I will be with you; and through the rivers, they will not overflow you.”

 

 
    Saturday, August 29, 2017, will be the 12th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.  I could not let it pass without relating to you how good and how gracious the Lord was to my husband and I during this very trying time. I also pray that our experience might be an encouragement to others who one year ago went through a flood.
     Twelve years ago we had been married for 37 years and had lived in our home in Slidell, La for 23 years.  I say this to make you realize how much “stuff” we had accumulated.  (Yes, some of it was junk, but much of it was things that meant something to us, mainly because it was ours.)  Well, the storm sent the flood and put 6 foot of water into our home and four trees on the roof.  No, it was not just water, it was muddy filthy water.  Ninety-nine percent of our possessions were ruined and the house had to be completely gutted.  It was quite a shock………..but we can’t dwell there long…………. for the abundant gracious love of our God, who brought us “through the water,” was overwhelming.  Our precious children here in Baton Rouge, La took us into their homes, giving up their own beds and bedrooms for our comfort.  Never once did we feel “homeless.” 
      Phone calls, cards and gifts came “flooding” in.  Not only did local family and church people help, but one month and one week later a 24 foot rental truck arrived and it was filled with furniture, clothes, and household  items—–everything needed to set up housekeeping again.  These had been collected by family and churches in North and South Carolina.  We never lacked for anything.    “But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 4:19.  It was amazing and we know God provided.
     Actually, our “loss” was minimal for it was only earthly possessions which “moth and rust doth corrupt”  Matthew 6:19.  Many many people had experiences similar to ours, but many people also lost the lives of their loved ones or their own lives.  God’s Word says in Romans 8:28, ” And we know that all things work together for good, to them that love God, to them that are the called according to His purpose.”   In God’s great and wonderful plan for our lives, He knew all about this and worked all things for our “good.”  How thankful I am.  How I praise and glorify Him. Now twelve years later, God is still taking care of us, as we have faced other serious trials.  Five times in the Bible God says,  “The just shall live by faith.”  Hebrews 10:38   Let us continue to live by those words believing and trusting God’s plans for our lives.  Then we shall have the “peace of God, which passeth all understanding, which shall keep our hearts and lives through Christ Jesus.”  Phil 4:7
 
Theme: The Better Way: Believing in God’s Plan is Good: Trusting God’s Plan Completely is Better
 
Posted in Encouragement | 3 Comments

Forgiveness

I John 4:19 “.…He first loved us.

 
Our Heavenly Father loved us first.  First, before we loved Him?  Yes, that is what the Bible says.  First, before our thoughts were toward Him.  First, when we were still in a state of rebellion.  First, when we were in all our unrighteousness.  First, when we rejected Him and lifted up our own self-righteousness.  First, when we loved the world and the things of the world.  First, when we went our own way doing that which was right in our own eyes.  What was there then about us for God to love us first?  The answer is obvious——nothing!  That’s right.  There never has been and never will be anything about us that is endearing and would cause God to love us; therefore, His love is based solely and completely on His Sovereignty.  After reading the list of questions above, our total depravity is evident; consequently, only when God first loves us can there be any hope for any of us.
As we meditate on this thought, let us who have so undeservedly received God’s great love consider how we extend this love to others.  Do we love unconditionally or only when we receive something in return?  Do we love only when someone else extends their love to us first?  Do we love without requiring  certain conditions or standards to be met?  How can we who have been loved first in our state of total depravity turn around and become selective in extending our love?  
This brings to mind the Biblical parable of “The Unmerciful Servant” found in Matthew 18:23-30:
“Therefore the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants. When he began to settle, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. And since he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. So the servant fell on his knees, imploring him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt. But when that same servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii, and seizing him, he began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay what you owe.’ So his fellow servant fell down and pleaded with him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you.’ He refused and went and put him in prison until he should pay the debt.”
The cruelty of the first servant to forgive the second servant after he had been so kindly treated is obvious and makes us want to cry out 
“how could he do that?”  And yet, have we as Christians, who have been so tenderly forgiven and cared for, often failed to show forth forgiveness and mercy when we are wronged?  Let each one of us carefully examine our hearts to see if we are harboring unforgiveness and holding grudges.  Forgiving means wiping the slate clean for when Christ “first loved us,” He also promised us complete forgiveness which He bought, not with “corruptible things as silver and gold,” but with His own “precious blood.”  I Peter 1:18-19
 
Theme: The Better Way: Forgiving Unconditionally Is God’s Way
 
Posted in Encouragement, Godly Living | 2 Comments

A Biblical Marriage

 Song of Solomon 8:7 “Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it.”
Mark 10:9 “What therefore God hath joined together, let no man separate.”

 
      My husband and I celebrated 49 years of marriage last November.  As I sit and reflect over the past 49 years, I am amazed and so filled with thanksgiving at God’s gracious orchestration of our lives: He brought us together and He has kept us together, and I give Him all the praise, honor and glory.
     How are strong lasting marriages full of love built?  God’s Word sets forth Biblical principles for a marriage.  First we will look at some of the instructions for a husband and then some of the instructions for a wife.
 
Husbands:
1. Adam’s great love for Eve shows forth in his expression,“This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh.” Genesis 2:23
2. Then God says, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” Genesis 2:24
3. Solomon expresses his love and encouragement when he says, “Live joyfully with the wife whom you love.” Ecclesiastes. 9:9
4. Paul exhorts the Ephesian husbands when he says, “For the husband is head of the wife, as Christ also is head of the church.  Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the church.” Ephesians 5:23,25
5. Paul again instructs the Ephesians, ” Husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies.” Ephesians 5:28
6. This time Paul is writing to the married men in Colosse, “Husbands love your wives and do not be embittered against them.” Colossians 3:19
7. Peter, one of the twelve apostles, who was also married, gives some serious instructions: “You husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman, and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”  I Peter 3:7
 
Wives: 
1. In Genesis, God made Eve “a helper suitable for” Adam.
 Genesis 2:20.
2. Also in Genesis 2:23, Adam said “She shall be called woman, because she was taken our of man.”.
3. The Psalmist says,  “Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine within your house.” Psalm 128:3
3. Solomon gives encouragement to wives, “A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband.” Proverbs 12:4
4. Again Solomon describes a wife to be desired, “A prudent wife is from the Lord.” Proverbs 19:14
5. Solomon tells us about an excellent wife, “The heart of her husband trusts in her.  She does him good and not evil all the days of her life.” Proverbs 31:11-12
6. Paul also has instructions for wives, “Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord.” Ephesians 5:23
6. Again, Paul writes, “The wife must see to it that she reverence her husband.”  Ephesians 5:33.
7. Paul writes to Titus with these words, wives are to “love their husbands.” Titus 2:4

8.  I Peter 3:4-6  Let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands; Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.”

As we read these instructions from God’s Word, it’s so encouraging to think about God’s wonderful plan for a marriage.

     First, He placed Jesus Christ as the Head of Man

     Second, He placed man as the head of the woman.

    Then he placed the man and woman as head of the children. “Children, be obedient to your parents in all things, for this is well-pleasing to the Lord.”  Colossians 3:20
   
      Along with these instructions, remember to always be ready to say “I’m sorry.” Psalm 38:18 “I will be sorry for my sin.”  And always be ready to “forgive.” “Just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.” (forgive) Colossians 3:13. Then lastly “Forget.”  Psalm 103:12 “As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.”  If God removes and forgives our sins, and He does, then who are we to remember them.  The peace that comes with all this is immeasurable .
 
Theme: The Better Way: Marriage is Good: A Biblical Marriage is Better
 
Read also: The Unnamed Woman
 
     
Posted in Encouragement, Guidance for Husbands, Guidance for Wives, Marriage | 4 Comments

Adopted By God

I John 3:1a  “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us that we should be called the sons of God.”

 
     Once a baby is born into this world, he/she is someone’s child, someone’s son or daughter.  Sometimes the parents are not able or do not want to care for the child and then the child can be adopted by people who have a desire to love and care for him/her.  Special papers are signed and by law that child now has the same rights and privileges as if he were born into that family.  No papers can ever be signed to “unadopt”  him. He will always be their son/daughter and their heir.  He was chosen in particular.  The adoptive parents had a choice as to whether they wanted him or not and so the adopted child should know for a fact that he was wanted very much and chosen from among many.
     God had only one Son, His only begotten Son, Jesus Christbut it is through His Son that we can become “sons of God” also.  Are you adopted?  No, I don’t mean in the physical sense, but have you been adopted into the Family of God?  Let’s consider for a few moments what the Word of God says about this great and high privilege.  Galatians 3:26 says “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Jesus Christ.”  First of all we become a child of God because we are redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus Christ.  Again Galatians 4:5 says, “To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.”  When God grants us faith to believe this, we immediately become a part of the Family of God.  The Bible says, “And I will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.” II Corinthians 6:18. “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.” John 1:12
     Isn’t that wonderful?  We now have the same rights and privileges as a son or daughter.  “And if children, then heirs: heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ.”  Romans 8:17.  What an inheritance we have been given: first, we are chosen among many, then redeemed from the curse of the law, then called a son of God, and then we are freely given a rich and lasting inheritance.  All this is ours with absolutely no merit on our part.
      Meditating on these thoughts is certainly a humbling experience—-to think that we become joint heirs with the One who shed His blood for us.  An honor certainly completely undeserved, but thankfully and humbly received.  “Behold what manner of love…..”
 
Theme: The Better Way: Being Someone’s Child is Good: Being Adopted By God is Better
 
Read Also:  Apple of God’s Eye
Posted in Encouragement, Thankfulness | 4 Comments

What Does the Lord Require of Thee?

Micah 6:8  “He has told thee O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?”

 
      This is one of my favorite Bible verses and over the years I have found much peace from reading it.  During the times when I have felt pressured to do this and do that or when I have felt burdened by the law, or when I have felt pushed to participate in some area of ministry service that I did not have time for or did not feel was right for me, and have felt an uncertainty about what is required of me, I go back to this verse to “see” just what it is that God wants me to do. 
God requires that I:
 
“Do Justly”—I need to walk in holiness in my manner of living and walk in honesty in all my dealings. 
                    
“Love Mercy”—-I must be long suffering and forgiving, over-looking the faults of others, out of a spirit of love, remembering always that I am forgiven not just daily but every second of every day.
 
“Walk humbly with thy God”—-I must walk in obedience to God’s commands, surrendering my will to God’s Will.
 
     If we take these instructions from God’s Holy Word and apply them, then we will certainly be filling ourselves with the Word of God daily and praying daily.  When we do, then our “cup” will begin to get full and very soon it will naturally overflow.  We will want to give out what we have been given by God.  It will not be a forced service, or a “have to” duty, because our service and our witnessing for the Lord will flow naturally, aided by the spiritual gifts God has given each one of us.  Our lives will be a reflection of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Let us ask the Lord to give each of us the grace to follow His instructions.
 
The Better Way: Serving the Lord is Good: Being a Reflection of the Lord Jesus Christ is Better
 
Read also: Self-Discipline
Posted in Encouragement, Guidance for Women | 4 Comments

God’s Protective Hand

Hebrews 13:2 “Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.”

Today I have a very interesting story to relate to you.  It is one in which the events seemed most natural to me, but upon reflecting later, my family and I were amazed at the intervention of what we know to be an angel sent by the loving protective Hand of God.
Ten years prior to this event, our family had moved to south central Mississippi from New Orleans, La, built a home and established what we hoped to be a permanent residence.  But ten years later, the job market became so bleak that my husband returned to the commercial construction field in New Orleans.  For three months he lived in an apartment part-time returning home every weekend.  I was saved at that time but as a “babe in Christ”(I Corinthians 3:1) I had not yet learned to take everything to the Lord first.  Still as you will see in this story, God’s Protective Hand was there to care for me. 
One week, I drove down to New Orleans with 2 of our 4 children.  My husband had given me specific instructions on how to find the apartment complex, but I ended up in the wrong area.  Carefully following what I thought were his instructions, I drove around and around to no avail.  Becoming more and more anxious. I finally decided to stop and ask someone and found a small grocery store.  “No,” no one was familiar with the name of the apartment complex. (I realized later there were dozens of them all over the area.)  The second place I asked gave me the same response.  I felt frustrated and helpless.  (Remember 33 years ago we did not have cell phones.)
By this time, I had been driving around for 45 minutes, with a fussy baby unwilling to be comforted by the helpful effort of her five year old brother.  I knew now it was useless to search anymore.  Gathering my then frayed nerves together, I organized a plan in my mind.  First, I needed to find a telephone; next I would call information and get the phone number of the apartment complex; (at this time, my husband did not have a telephone hooked up in his apartment) then I would call the apartment complex office, tell them where I was and ask them how to get to their place.  In my upset state the procedure seemed long and complicated, but I could come up with no other solution.
Searching for a pay telephone, I finally came across a large driveway area, next to a building.  There, hanging on the wall was a pay phone that was being used by a lady.  I pulled up close because of the children.  When the lady got off the phone, I hopefully asked her if she knew where the apartment was, explaining that I was lost.  She replied kindly but negatively and as she walked on down the driveway I proceeded to pick up the telephone.  Still looking in the direction of the lady, I saw a man appear from behind the surrounding shrubbery, walking down the sidewalk.  In one hand he was carrying a canned soft drink, but the other hand was up waving back and forth, as if to draw attention, while he said, “Anybody need some help?  Anybody need some help?”  In my anxious state of mind, I concluded that it was obvious to this man that the situation looked like someone was in need of help.  Of course, that was not the case because there was no physical  evidence of a problem.  I was eager to respond to his offer of help when to my relief I saw the lady speaking to him and pointing in my direction.  He came up the  driveway and asked me if I needed some help.  I said “yes” and told him I was lost and gave him the name of the apartment complex I was searching for.   “Yes” he knew where the place was.  I might add that the place was quite a distance from where we were and yet, and with his finger he drew out the directions on the hood of the car in a simple easily understandable manner.  With great relief I comprehended what he said and thanked him for his help and went straight to my destination where my husband was anxiously waiting in the parking lot.
At the time, this event seemed a natural occurrence—I needed some help and someone offered to help.  But as I began to relate the story with tears of relief, my husband said in amazement, “No one walks down the street asking if anyone needs help. That must have been an angel, sent from the Lord!”  Shocked, I realized how right he was. Oh,  how I praise the Lord for His wonderful protective care.
 
As a footnote:  I hesitated to print this incident, since there is a trend in our society that leans toward worshiping angels.  In no way, do I want to give any praise other than to my Heavenly Father and His dear Son, Jesus Christ, my Lord. In speaking of angels, God’s Word says:
  “Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?” Hebrews 1:14
 
The Better Way: Realizing God Never Leaves Us Alone Brings Great Comfort And Security
 
  
 
Posted in Assurance, Encouragement, Thankfulness | 10 Comments

When You Pray

Matthew 26:39b  “Nevertheless not as I will, but as Thou wilt.”

 
     As we think about prayer, I want to share with you a way I organize my prayer requests.  For many many years I kept a prayer list on a long narrow strip of paper in the center of my Bible (at the beginning of Psalms) to help me stay focused on the people I wanted to pray for and the specific things I wanted to pray about.  It became tattered and torn but was like an old friend.  (Yes, I still have it.)
     In 2007, our church started doing Prayer Requests by email and since there were so many requests that I couldn’t remember them all I started a “Prayer Notebook,” .  On the left-hand side of the page I made 2 columns: one is for the date the request was made and the other is for the letter ” A” for “answered”— if or when I ever knew the  specific answer.  How encouraging it is to see many “A’s” and a lined crossed through the request !  Other requests remain on the pages even after 6 years. But I praise the Lord that I can bring them all without hesitation, without uncertainty and without fear of rejection.  Each prayer will be heard, each prayer will be answered.   No request will be disregarded and perhaps now or in a little while or sometime in the future I will see the answer and rejoice.   But wait……I can rejoice right now, because when the answer does come, it will not be my will but God’s Will, and it will be the perfectly right answer, and I could want nothing else.
     Following Jesus Christ’s example in His prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane, I will say “nevertheless not as I will, but as Thou wilt.” 
 
     Remember: Pray when you feel like it, because it would be a shame to miss that opportunity.  Pray when you don’t feel like it, because that’s when you really need it!
 
Theme: The Better Way: Praying is Good, Praying for God’s Will is Better
 
Posted in Prayer | Leave a comment

A Father’s Day Letter From His Daughter

In honor of Father’s Day, I am publishing a letter our daughter sent her father several years ago. May you be encouraged.

None of the cards in the stores ever seem to say the right things  So I thought I’d write one myself. There are many thing I realize I never say “Thank you” for. Sometimes we just assume parents know we are thankful for these thing. But just in case you don’t know, I thought I’d tell you.

Thank you for being a good provider.  You’ve always had a home for us with plenty to eat and good clothes to wear.

 

Thank you for teaching me how to work.  There were many mornings I didn’t want to go pick peas or pull weeds in the in the garden or feed the chickens. But I’m thankful now that I was taught to do these things.

 Thank you for teaching me about the Lord and having family devotions.  I still remember kneeling at the couch and praying when I was 5 years old.  
Thank you for being a faithful husband to your wife.  Many men aren’t and families are divided.
Thank you for saying “no” to things I wanted to do when I wish you would have said “yes.” At the time I thought you were just too rough on me, but you’ll never know how much I’m thankful for those “no’s” now.

 

Thank you for all the times you said, “You be a good girl.”  Some words ring in your ears at just the right moment. 

 I’m thankful for all the principles and values you taught me.  It was not just by speaking them but living them before me that has made me who I am today.
And most of all, I’m thankful you are my father.
Love always, Beth
Image | Posted on by | 5 Comments

A Letter To A Father From His Son

For This I Am Proud of You 

 
The Lord Jesus said we are to love the Lord our God with all of our heart, soul, strength, and mind.
This I have seen with my childhood family on our knees around an old footrest.
This I have seen as I rode to work with you in your pickup truck many summer mornings
This I have been blessed to see in numerous Bible studies since Katrina.
You have held dear this greatest of commandments in too many ways to mention here.
Daddy, I am proud of you for this.
 
The Lord Jesus said we are to love others.
This I have seen in your friendliness and honest desires to connect with all people.
This I have seen in your sincere strivings to “put yourself in the other person’s shoes.”
This I have been blessed to see my entire life in your empathy for the elderly.
Your have held dear this second greatest commandment in so many other ways.
Daddy, I am proud of you for this.
 
A Psalm asks, “Who can find a faithful man?”
This I have seen my whole life in your commitment to God, Country and Family.
This I have been blessed to see in your persistent actions as well as heard in your consistent words.
This I have seen in you as a dependable and reliable construction worker (has to be a rare find),
     your constant & unfailing dedication to family and your steady & unswerving desire to do right.
For this your faithfulness, reliability, and trustworthiness, I am proud of you.
Daddy, you are that faithful man.
 
A Proverb encourages a man to walk in integrity.
This I have seen in the method you taught us to accurately weigh a bushel of purple hull peas.
This I have seen (and I believe the example very fitting) in your careful and meticulous craftsmanship.
This I have seen more clearly than most because integrity in little things is not usually seen by the world.
For this your integrity, sincerity and uprightness of heart, I am proud of you.
Daddy, I am sure the Lord will say, “Well done.”
 
The Lord requires much of those who are given much.
I have received so much in the example of a true father, that my only option is to beg for mercy.
Because of unpleasant experiences, many people cannot associate God’s love with a father’s love.
I have never had this problem.
This fantastic mixture of consistent firmness and immense compassion, I have seen in you.
For this, I am proud of you.
 
With all love and respect, Carlos Jr to my dad, Carlos Sr


Posted in Encouragement, Guidance for Fathers, Raising Children | 1 Comment

Bible Encouragement For Fathers

Proverbs 23:24 “The father of the righteous shall greatly rejoice: and he that begetteth a wise child shall have joy of him.”
 

 

What does God’s Word have to say to father’s?  The following verses give some clear concise instruction:


To Teach

Deuteronomy 6:7

You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.

Deuteronomy 4:9

 

“Only give heed to yourself and keep your soul diligently, so that you do not forget the things which your eyes have seen and they do not depart from your heart all the days of your life; but make them known to your sons and your grandsons.

Isaiah 38:19

A father tells his sons about Your faithfulness.

 

To Train

Proverbs 22:6

 

Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it.

 

Proverbs 22:15

Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; The rod of discipline will remove it far from him.

To Provide

2 Corinthians 12:14

 

Children are not responsible to save up for their parents, but parents for their children.

2 Thessalonians 3:10

 

If anyone is not willing to work, then he is not to eat, either.

1 Timothy 5:8

 

But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

To Nurture and Love

 

Ephesians 6:4

 

Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

Colossians 3:21

 

Fathers, do not exasperate your children, so that they will not lose heart.

To Discipline and Control

 

1 Timothy 3:4

 

He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity.

 

 

Proverbs 29:17

 Correct your son, and he will give you comfort; He will also delight your soul.

Examples of Godly Fathers:

Job prays for his children Job 1:5

When the days of feasting had completed their cycle, Job would send and consecrate them, rising up early in the morning and offering burnt offerings according to the number of them all; for Job said, “Perhaps my sons have sinned and cursed God in their hearts.” Thus Job did continually.

Joshua’s commitment, Joshua 24:15

 

“As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”

Abraham’s faithfulness, Genesis 18:19

 

For I have chosen him, so that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice. 

David’s charge to Solomon, 1 Kings 2:1-3

 

As David’s time to die drew near, he charged Solomon his son, saying,  “I am going the way of all the earth. Be strong, therefore, and show yourself a man.  Keep the charge of the Lord your God, to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, His commandments, His ordinances, and His testimonies,according to what is written in the Law of Moses.”

Zacharias Godly example, Luke 1:6

 

They were both righteous in the sight of God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and requirements of the Lord.

 
If your heart’s desire is to be a good father, to follow God’s plan and will for raising your children, then don’t be discouraged over your failures.  Children know when you are sincere; they know if you love them or not; they know if your motives are selfish or not, and they overlook and rise above it all.
 
Remember: I Corinthians 16:13-14
“Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love.”
 
The Better Way: Following God’s Instructions for Raising Children Is The Better Way
 
Teach your children Bible verses through song:
 

Read also: Training Children

Read AlsoA Biblical Marriage 

 

 

 



Posted in Building Our Homes, Godly Living, Raising Children | 1 Comment

Encouraging Prayers and Poems

 
Study Prayer
Lord and Savior, True and Kind,
Be the Master of my mind.
Bless and guide and strengthen still,
All the powers of thought and will.
While I ply the scholars task.
Jesus Christ be near, I ask.
Help my memory, clear my brain,
Knowledge still to seek and gain.
copied
 
Calling God’s People To Worship
Up slight man,
Flee for a little while thy occupations
Hide thyself for a time from thy disturbing thoughts.
Pass away now thy toilsome cares and
Put aside thy burdensome business.
Yield room for some little time with God,
And rest a little while in Him.
In the inner chamber,
Shut out all thoughts save those of God, and
Such as can aid thee in worshipping Him.
Speak now to God and say,
“I seek Thy face, Thy face, Lord, do I seek.
by Anselm of Canterbury
 
 
He Maketh No Mistake
My Father’s ways may twist and turn,
My heart may throb and ache,
But in my heart I’m glad I know, 
He maketh no mistake.
 
My cherished plans may go astray,
My hopes may fade away,
But still I’ll trust my Lord to lead,
For He doth know His way.
 
Though night be dark and it may seem
That day will never break.
I’ll pin my faith, my all in Him,
He maketh no mistake.
 
There’s so much now I cannot see.
My eyesight’s far too dim,
But come what may, I’ll simply trust,
And leave it all with Him.
 
For by and by the mist will lift,
And plain it all He’ll make.
Through all the way though dark to me,
He maketh no mistake. 
Unknown Author

May the Mind of Christ My Savior

May the mind of Christ, my Savior,Live in me from day to day,By His love and power controlling All I do and say.May the Word of God dwell richly In my heart from hour to hour, So that all may see I triumph Only through His power.May the peace of God my Father Rule my life in everything, That I may be calm to comfort Sick and sorrowing.May the love of Jesus fill me As the waters fill the sea; Him exalting, self abasing, This is victory.May I run the race before me, Strong and brave to face the foe, Looking only unto Jesus As I onward go.May His beauty rest upon me, As I seek the lost to win, And may they forget the channel, Seeing only Him. (copied)

 
 
 
Lord, you’re the priority and when it comes to me, 
all I ask is that You fulfill Your promise on my behalf 
to sustain my life for Your glory, 
forgive my sin for your glory and
 to protect me from the evil one for Your glory.
  So whatever it is you do about this illness,
 or whatever it is you do about this dilemma,
 whatever it is You do about the suffering and the pain, 
Lord, may it honor You and
 may it manifest the fulfillment of Your promises.
Amen
 
Prayer by Pastor/Teacher John MacArthur
  
 
We come to you as our most gracious and loving Father. 
 We do hallow Your name and seek your glory.
We remember the words of our Lord Jesus,”anything you ask in my name, that will I do, in order that the Father may be glorified in the Son.”  It’s really about You and then about us, in so far as what happens to us glorifies You.  May we pray as worshippers, always for your glory.  We thank You for the access, this open door and may we live in this constant communion which you’ve made available to us.  Be glorified, O God, through our lives.  Hear and answer our prayer.  We pray in your Son’s name.  Amen
 

 

Prayer by John MacArthur
 
 

 

 

 
Prayer For Our Country

 

‘Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and to seek your direction and guidance. 

We know Your Word says, ‘Woe to those who call evil good,’ but that is exactly what we have done. 

We have lost our spiritua
l equilibrium and reversed our values.

We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery.

We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare.

We have killed our unborn and called it choice.

We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable. 

We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self esteem. 

We have abused power and called it politics.

We have coveted our neighbor’s possessions and called it ambition. 

We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression.

We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment. 

Search us, Oh God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from every sin and Set us free. Amen!’

Billy Graham

 

 

Prayer In Nehemiah

Ne 9: 5-8

 

Arise, bless the Lord your God forever and ever!

O, may Your glorious name be blessed,

And exalted above all blessing and praise!

You alone are the Lord.

You have made the heavens,

The heaven of heavens with all their host,

The seas and all that is in them.

You gave life to all of them,

And the heavenly host bows down before You.

You are the Lord God….. for You are righteous.

 

 

 

The Bible

 

Here is
the spring where waters flow,

To quench our heat of sin:

Here is the tree where truth doth grow,

to lead our lives therein:

Here is the judge that stints the strife,

When men’s devices fail:

Here is the bread that feeds the life

That death cannot assail.

The tidings of salvation dear,

Comes to our ears from hence:

The fortress of our faith is here,

And shield of our defense.

Then be not like the swine that hath

A pearl at his desire, 

And takes more pleasure from the trough

And wallowing in the mire.

Read not his book in any case,

But with a single eye:

Read not but first desire God’s grace,

To understand thereby.

Pray still in faith with this respect,

To bear good fruit therein,

That knowledge may bring this effect,

To mortify your sin.

Then happy you shall be in all your life,

What so to you befalls:

Yes, double happy you shall be,

When God by death you calls.

(From the first Bible printed in Scotland–1576)

 


Hymn
of Praise

by

F.W. Faber

My
God, how wonderful Thou art,

Thy
majesty how bright!
How
beautiful Thy mercy-seat
In
depths of burning light!

O
Everlasting Lord!

How
dread are Thine eternal years,
By
prostrate spirits, day and night
Incessantly
adored.

The
sight of Thee must be,

How
wonderful, how beautiful
Thine
endless wisdom, boundless power
And
awful purity.

With
deepest, tenderest fears,

And
how I fear Thee, living God,
And
worship Thee with trembling heart
And
penitential tears!

Almighty
as Thou art,

Yet
I may love Thee too, O Lord,
For
Thou has stooped to ask of me,
The
love of my poor heart.
 
No
earthly father loves like Thee;
No
mother e’re so mild,
Bears
and forbears as Thou hast done,
With
me, Thy sinful child.

 

Whatever My God Ordains Is Right


 

In
His love I am abiding

Whatever
my God ordains is right
I
will be still in all He does
And
follow where He is guiding
He
is my God, though dark my road
He
holds me that I shall not fall
And
so to Him I leave it all

Whatever
my God ordains is right

He
never will deceive me
He
leads me by the proper path
I
know He will not leave me
I
take content, what He has sent
His
hand can turn my griefs away
And
patiently I wait His day

Whatever
my God ordains is right

Here
shall my stand be taken
Though
sorrow, or need, or death be mine
Yet
I am not forsaken
My
Father’s care circles me there
He
holds me that I shall not fall
And
so to Him I leave it all

Whatever
my God ordains is right

Though
now this cup in drinking
My
God is true, each morn anew
Bitter
it seems to my faint heart
I
take it all unshrinking
And
pain and sorrow shall depart
Sweet
comfort yet shall fill my heart

 

Credits:

Original
words by Samuel Rodigast (1676), translated by Catherine Winkworth
(1863), music and alternate words by Mark Altrogge 

 

 

 

Have you not known, have you not heard
That firm remains on high
The everlasting throne of Him
Who made the earth and sky?

Are you afraid His pow’r shall fail
When comes your evil day?
And can an all-creating arm
Grow weary or decay?

Supreme in wisdom as in pow’r
The Rock of ages stands,
Though Him you cannot see, nor trace
The working of His hands.

Mere human pow’r shall fast decay,
And youthful vigor cease;
But they who wait upon the Lord
In strength shall still increase.
–Isaac Watts, 1707

 

At
the Judgement Seat of Christ

 

When
I stand at the judgement seat of Christ,

 

And
He shows me His plan for me;

The
plan of my life as it might have been,

Had
He had His way, and I see

How
I blocked Him here and checked Him there,

And
would not yield my will,

Shall
I see grief in my Savior’s eyes;

Grief
though He loves me still?

Oh,
He’d have me rich, and I stand there poor,

Stripped
of all but His grace,

While
my memory runs like a hunted thing,

Down
the paths I can’t retrace.

Then
my desolate heart will well-nigh break,

With
tears that I cannot shed.

I’ll
cover my face with my empty hands

and
bow my uncrowned head.

No.
Lord of the years that are left to me,

I
yield them to Thy hand.

Take
me, make me, mold me,

To
the pattern Thou hast planned.

 

Alexander

Maclaren, 1826-1910

 
 
 
Prayer
 
“Lord help me live from day to day

In such a self-forgetful way
That even when I kneel to pray
My prayer shall be for – Others.

Help me in all the work I do
To ever be sincere and true
And know that all I do for you
Must needs be done for – Others.

Let “Self” be crucified and slain
And buried deep; and all in vain
May efforts be to rise again
Unless to live for – Others.

And when my work on earth is done
And my new work in heaven’s begun
May I forget the crown I’ve won
While thinking still of – Others.

Others, Lord, yes others
Let this my motto be
Help me to live for others
That I may live like Thee.”

 

Flame Of God
Give me love that leads the way,
The faith that nothing can dismay,
The hope no disappointments tire,
The passion that will burn like fire.
Let me not sink to be a clod;
Make me thou fuel, Flame of God.
by Amy Carmichael
 
Teach your children Bible verses through song:
 
 
 

 

Posted in Assurance, Bible Study, Encouragement, Prayer | 1 Comment

Stop and Pray

Ephesians 6:18 “With all prayer and petition, pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.” ESV

Much has been written on prayer and the Bible has a lot to say about prayer, and still many of us find ourselves feeling very inadequate when it comes to praying.  Recently a suggestion crossed my path that has been very helpful for me personally and I wanted to share it with you.  Pastor John MacArthur of Grace To You, www.gty.org, says that in addition to our regular prayer time, he also encourages everyone to pray as we read our Bibles.
As we consider this idea, first let’s stop a minute and think about those things we want to include in our prayers.
1. Adoration and Worship of Almighty God.
2. Thanksgiving and Praise for blessings.
3. Repentance and Confession of our sins
4. Supplications and Requests for others and ourselves.
The Bible gives us much encouragement even before we begin to pray with the words from Psalms 81:10b “Open thy mouth wide and I will fill it.” Yes, we can ask largely, ask many, ask much.  
Returning to Pastor MacArthur’s suggestion: Perhaps we’re reading in Psalms–“The heavens declare the glory of God” –stop and pray a prayer of adoration and worship.  Then we may be reading Mary’s song of praise in Luke 1:46-47, “My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoice in God my Savior,” and we can stop and give thanks and praise the Lord for our blessings.
Or we may be reading in Kings about the sins of the Children of Israel, II Kings 17:7, “And so it was that the Children of Israel sinned against the Lord their God…”–we can stop and pray a prayer of confession of our sins, the sins of our church and the sins of our nation.  Reading on in God’s Word we find Jesus healing a woman and saying to her, “Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole,” Luke 5:34 and we can stop and pray for the many people we know who are sick and suffering and those that need to know the Lord as their Savior.  Next, as we read about Ruth and Esther we can stop and pray for ourselves, asking God to conform our own lives to His will and His way.
These are just a few simple examples of praying as we read the Bible, but hopefully they are an encouragement to press on in prayer as we follow Christ’s command through Paul in I Thessalonians 5:16-18, Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 
       Remember: Pray when you feel like it, because it would be a shame to miss that opportunity.  Pray when you don’t feel like it, because that’s when you really need it!
 
The Better Way: Praying Some Is Good, Living A Life In The Spirit Of Prayer Is Better.
 
See also:  When You Pray
 
Posted in Encouragement, Prayer | 2 Comments

And When You Pray

Psalm 81:10b “Open thy mouth wide and I will fill it.”  

 
     Considering the vastness and wonder of space, as we did in the last blog has been such a blessing to me in my prayer life.  When I start praying and my list seems so long, I call to mind the universe (the heavens) and the millions and billions of stars and planets that God created.  Like a tiny ant taking a few grains of wheat out of a huge silo, I realize that certainly my one hundred or so requests are nothing to Him.  How encouraged I am to lay before God all my heart.  
    Reread the above scripture verse again: “Open thy mouth wide.”
    I want to:
 
    Not just ask a few, but ask largely, ask many;
    Not just ask timidly, but ask boldly;
    Not just ask doubtfully, but ask with assurance
    Not just ask fearfully, but confidently in faith
 
Why? Because our God hears all and answers all. His promises are sure.
     Reread the above Scripture verse: “and I  will  fill  it.
 
     Remember: Pray when you feel like it, because it would be a shame to miss that opportunity.  Pray when you don’t feel like it, because that’s when you really need it!
 
Theme: The Better Way: Praying is Good, Praying with Boldness is Better
 
See also: When You Pray
See also:  Stop and Pray
Posted in Prayer | 1 Comment