Pray With Them, Not Just For Them

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1 Then Job replied to the Lord:  2  “I know that you can do anything,   and no one can stop you. — Job 42:1,2 NLT

Job 42:1-7

We are all familiar with Job’s story and all the things he had suffered at the hands of satan.  God had allowed this to happen even though God considered Job a righteous man.  Remember that God pointed Job out to satan and asked him “have you considered my servant Job?”  Reading through the book of Job brings up a lot of questions.  It also shows us that sometimes good friends can give us some bad advice.  God wasn’t happy about the advice Job’s three friends had given him.  It is good to get advice from Godly people, but sometimes God wants to speak to us directly and wants us to lean on Him and Him alone.  There are mysteries that only He can solve and situations that only He understands.  There are lessons that only God can teach us.  God considered Job a righteous man but that doesn’t mean that Job didn’t sin.  After all, there has only been one perfect man to ever walk this earth.  Perhaps Job sinned in that he was always the one that offered sacrifices after the lengthy parties that his sons threw at their homes. We are not told whether or not he taught this practice to his kids, only that he always did it for them.  Which begs the question. are we actively teaching our kids how to walk with integrity before God?  Are we praying with them or just praying for them?  When situations arise, are we doing all the praying and sacrificing or are we teaching them that the whole family prays, ask for God’s forgiveness and sacrifices together?

 

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous
Post 12-04-2018

Rejoice! Pray! Give Thanks! Repeat!

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18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thess. 5:18 ISV
 
 
If we rejoice all the time, pray continually and give thanks in all circumstances, that doesn’t leave us any time to be idle. Of course, we can’t literally do these things all the time, but we can develop habits that will allow us to spend more time actually doing these things.  We can take all of our thoughts captive and bring them into submission under Jesus Christ.
 

5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.– 2 Cor. 10:5 NIV

When we find our thoughts wandering into areas that lead us into temptation, doubt and worry, we need to immediately bring them back into submission. If we do this, then we will always have an attitude of gratitude.  We will always be in an attitude of prayer regardless of what we are doing physically.  We are not bound by our circumstances or feelings, but by our knowledge of Jesus Christ and who we are in Him.  When we feel those little nudges of the Holy Spirit, we will be ready to act on them and do what God is asking us to do minute by minute. We will also find that our days are full of peace and joy as we are being sanctified daily by the Holy Spirit.  We cannot do this in the flesh, God knows that.  But the God that called us to repentance is able and He is faithful to finish what He has started in our lives. We are saved by grace through faith and we must live our daily lives walking by faith.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

Post 07-20-2018

Rejoice! Pray! Praise! Repeat!

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11 Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.12 Greet one another with a holy kiss. 13 All God’s people here send their greetings. 14 May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. — 2 Cor. 13:11-14 NIV

Rejoice!  Isn’t it amazing that after all Paul has gone through and was still going through at this time, that he could say rejoice?  Through all the persecutions, beatings, attempts on his life and bearing the burden of wayward people in the churches he had established, Paul was still rejoicing and encouraging others to continue in faithfulness. One of our highest priorities as Christians should be to pray for and encourage others. Compared to what Paul went through and what our brothers and sisters in other countries are going through today, anything we have to suffer through is certainly “a light affliction”. Yet, some of us are so focused on our own problems that we walk around like Eeyore in Winnie the Pooh thinking “Woe is me.”.  All of us need more encouragement and more reminding of who we are in Christ Jesus. We need to “zoom out” on our lives and look at the whole panorama that God has given us. The more time we spend focused on Jesus and others, the less time we will have to focus on our own issues. When we take time to fellowship with the Holy Spirit, we find that our spirits are lifted and we can truly rejoice.

4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding,will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.– Phil. 4:4-7

 

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous
Post 06-25-2018

Danger! – Do Not Reject God’s Gift!

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31 It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God. ​– Hebrews 10:31 NLT

God sent His only Son to die a horrible death on a cross for our sins, He does not take lightly those who reject that Gift. In the Old Testament, the lawbreakers were put to death on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Those that have rejected Jesus will be put into the lake of fire forever. Their souls will suffer torment for all ages to come. Physical death can be painful for any human, but those that have not accepted Jesus have no hope for eternity. Their souls will endure punishment forever. “Every knee will bow and every tongue will confess”. We can choose to do it now and spend an eternity with God or wait and be banished from the presence of God forever.. Sin is a deadly disease and we know the cure. If your family, friend or acquaintance had a deadly disease and you had the cure, wouldn’t you share it with them? Take a moment to pray for those that are lost. God will prepare their heart for you to speak to them. Don’t be afraid of rejection, it isn’t you they are rejecting, it is Jesus and He can handle it.
 
Hebrews 4:12-13 NLT


“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 05-05-2017

Pray and Keep On Praying!

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1 Finally, dear brothers and sisters,[a] we ask you to pray for us. Pray that the Lord’s message will spread rapidly and be honored wherever it goes, just as when it came to you
— 2 Thess. 3:1 NLT

None of us have reached perfection and we won’t as long as we inhabit these tents of flesh. Therefore, we need the prayers of our Christian brothers and sisters just as they need us to pray for them. We need Spiritual and physical strength to carry on God’s Kingdom work here on earth. “The harvest is great, but the workers are few” so we need to pray and ask God to send laborers into the fields.(Matt 9:37,38 paraphrased). We need to ask God to guard our thoughts because the mind is the spiritual battlefield where our personal battles are won or lost. The Lord is faithful. He has promised that we will not be tempted above our ability to resist and that He will always provide a way out for us. We don’t always find the way out because the flesh gets great pleasure from wallowing in its old sinful ways. We need to pray for each other that we will continue to do the things that God has commanded us to do. When we practice doing the right things, we receive more understanding and patience which allows us to better show sinners the greatness of God’s love toward us and them.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 03-24-2017

Joyfully Spread the Word!

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We always pray for you, and we give thanks to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. — Col. 1:3 NLT

Just as Paul prayed for those to whom he had carried the Gospel, we must pray for those that we witness to as well. Jesus said to “go and make disciples” (Matt 28:18). Making disciples requires more than just teaching others the plan of salvation. Just as Paul would stay in a community and teach for several Sabbaths, we must be diligent to do the same with new converts. Then we must remember to always pray for them, asking God to fill them with His Spirit, wisdom, knowledge and insight. So that they will grow and produce more fruit for the Kingdom. We, as well as the new converts, need God’s strength and might to endure with patience. It is God’s plan that each of us share with others so that His Kingdom will grow. We must share His love with others and we must do it with a song of joy in our hearts and on our lips attracting others to Jesus.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 03-01-2017

Maturity Requires Daily Nourishment

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I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. — Philippians 1:9 NLT

The way we keep on growing spiritually is to keep meditating on God’s Word. We must spend time alone with God each and every day. Reading God’s Word, meditating on it, praying and practicing what we have learned is the way we grow and attract others to Christ. We can only attempt to live pure and blameless lives, but it would be totally impossible without the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. The time we spend in study will help us to live lives filled with the righteous character of God. This will bring praise and glory to God, which is our primary purpose for being here.


“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

 

Post 2-24-2017

Prayer, Praise, Thanksgiving

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27 And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will. — Romans 8:27 NLT

Living out the love of God in our lives effectively requires us to spend time in prayer. There are times when we know that we need to pray but we just don’t quite know how to approach God about it. Just start a simple prayer and we find that suddenly we are praying about someone or something that we had not planned. There are times when we may be so compassionate about something that we just run out of words to pray. Just remain quietly in the attitude of prayer and God’s Holy Spirit will search your heart and communicate the words to God. While all this is going on, remember that we have an advocate (Jesus) with the Father who is also praying for us. Our simple prayers become effective prayers because the Trinity is praying with us and for us, separately and in unity. This should cause us to pray believing that God will answer us in his own time.  Because we believe He will answer we should always include praise and thanksgiving in our prayers. We can never thank him enough or too often for sending His Son Jesus to redeem us from our sins

Luke 1:68-70 NLT


“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 12-22-2016

Knock! Knock!

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For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.  — Matthew 7:8 NLT

We hear a lot of opinions on how we should pray. Some say you should only ask once and God will answer when and if He wants to. Some say you should only ask for certain things. What does God say about it? In the original text of the Bible, the Greek verbs were verbs that indicated this was a continuing action. Jesus concurs with this in the parable of the woman who kept bothering the unjust judge until he gave her what she wanted. In James, we are told that “all good gifts come down from the Father above”. Furthermore, God has said that He is our provider and that means more than spiritual salvation. When Jesus healed people, He used the term “made whole”. That means physical as well as spiritual. The simple truth is that we can ask God for any and every thing that doesn’t violate His Word and we can keep on asking Him. Think about what He said to Paul. Paul had asked Jesus 3 times for healing and God said “my grace is sufficient”. That was God’s answer to Paul’s prayer. Unless God has answered your prayer (and that doesn’t always mean that He gives us what we want, but He does give us what we need) keep on asking. Look again at verse 8 above: “For everyone who asks receives……”

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 11-12-2016

React or Respond?

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44 But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! — Matthew 5:44
 

As Christians, how do we respond when we are deliberately mistreated? Are we to be negative or positive in our responses? We should always strive to be positive and let God show His love through us. Jesus forgave His persecutors and we are to do the same. Was that forgiveness a show of weakness or was it unbelievable strength? Who was the actual winner at the Cross? If we respond in the same manner as Jesus, it is really a show of our strength and our faith in Jesus Christ. In the times of the early church, being struck on the right cheek with the back of the right hand was something that a superior did to someone of less stature as an insult. Jesus said that we should not react to attacks on our own person or dignity. He has promised that He will defend us and that revenge is His.  We are promised that we will be offended and when we are offended, it is our duty to respond in love and with acts of kindness.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous