Swimming against the currents.
The Courage to Swim Against the Current – Jer. 38:1-13
“A man’s steps are directed by the Lord. How then can anyone
understand his own way?” Proverbs 20:24
- The Lord your God who goes before you will fight for you, just as you saw Him do for you in Egypt. And you saw in the wilderness how the Lord your God carried you as a man carries his son all along the way you traveled until you reached this place.
- The Lord holds his hand.
YIRAH: Which means FEAR
Additional scripture reference:
PARDES: Which means GARDEN
Additional scripture reference:
MIDBAR: Which means DESERT
Additional scripture reference: Isaiah 54:10
Additional scripture reference: Hosea 13:5
MEM: Which means CHAOS
Associated reading:John 6:19American Standard Version (ASV)
19 When therefore they had rowed about five and twenty or thirty furlongs, they behold Jesus walking on the sea, and drawing nigh unto the boat: and they were afraid.
This concludes this series ” seven Hebrew words every believer should know” I hope you learned and enjoyed this series which I decided to share as much as I did.
NEPHESH: Which means SOUL
Associated reading: Psalm 19:1American Standard Version (ASV)
The works and the Word of God.
For the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David.
19 The heavens declare the glory of God;
And the firmament showeth his handiwork.
My Prayer/ Commentary:
SHALOM: Which means PEACE
Associated reading: John 14:27American Standard Version (ASV)
RUACH: Which means BREATH
Associated Reading: Genesis 2:7American Standard Version (ASV)
TEFILLAH: Which means PRAYER
Associated reading: 2 Corinthians 13:5American Standard Version (ASV)
My commentary / prayer(TEFILLAH ):
EMUNAH: Which means FAITH
Associated reading: James 2:17American Standard Version (ASV)
17 Even so faith, if it have not works, is dead in itself.
My commentary : prayer:
HESED: Which means LOVE
Associated reading: Isaiah 54:10American Standard Version (ASV)
Give honor to those to whom honor is owed!” Roman 13:7.
Today I want to start off by giving God almighty all the glory and Honor. Every time we wake up we should be thankful and give glory to the one who has made it possible. Thank you Abba father.
Secondly in light of Veterans Day, I want to thank our beloved service men and women from past and present for their blood, tears, sweat and sacrifices they have made for this country. Thank you for your service from the depths of my heart and soul.
I dedicate this post to our service men and women all over.
My family and friends whom are veterans…. I thank you yet again for your service. What you did/do, not many have the strength, passion, valor or capability to do.
The reason that today you (reading this) and I enjoy the freedom to worship together publicly is because someone fought to gain, preserve, and protect that freedom for us.
The reason that today you and I enjoy the right to free speech is because someone fought to gain, preserve and protect that freedom for us.
The reason that today we have the right to vote because someone fought to gain, preserve and protect that freedom for us.
The reason that today we live in a democratic republic is because because someone fought to gain, preserve and protect that freedom for us.
Please remember Freedom is never free. Freedom is never Free. These selfless mean and women deserve our deep gratitude. So let’s thank God. Let’s pray for our veterans and active troops . Let’s thank Them.
Father God the honor and glory as always goes to you first and foremost. Lord we thank you for the many, many service men and women whom have fought , preserved and protect us. Lord I ask that you cover over each veteran under your wing of protection. May you bless our veterans for all that you have allowed them to do for us. In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit Amen.
- I am an ungrateful child of yours.
- I am a selfish child of yours.
- Always wanting more than what you provide.
- Always comparing what others have and wanting it.
- Forgive me dear lord.
- Twice on Sunday he said only one word. Patience.
I want to apologize first to my lord and savior for not writing and blogging about his word, love and mercy.
Second I want to apologize to the readers whom are lifted up when you read the words that the lord inspired me to write.
Since hurricane Harvey I have been campaigning on stop for relief efforts for all in need. Whether by providing information as to where to donate aid, time, monetary donations or goods. I have family whom recently moved to Texas, my heart was heavy, luckily my family do not live within the regions which were affected. Despite that blessing my call towards servitude never falters.
As Christian’s we are called to service. My calling is evermore present right now… the phone is ringing and Lord knows I’m answering any which way that I can.
Then hurricane Irma hit and destroyed Many islands which many of my relatives resides in as well as Florida where I have many relatives as well. Yet again my campaign continued to help any which way I could. Advertising relief efforts, advertising information…. any which way I am able to help I can.
Now Maria…..oh María…. you finished off what Irma started and now, because of you I haven’t had a good nights rest. I can’t complain I have it better off compared to my island folks, compared to my paisanos. My heart is heavy. Still haven’t heard from many relatives. Many are without power, without food, without water, without their shelters.
As I write this I fight back tears which I thought I no longer thought I had any left.
I fight back the worry of my family.
It had been a month and things are not looking well.
Pray for all the islands please.
Help anyway you can.
I have moments where I just start writing.
Words come to my mind and I just have to pen them to paper.
If I don’t I loose it.
So on the train the other day, thinking and while i was thinking these words just kept coming.
Lo and behold this poem came about.
Hope you enjoy this.
I was recently having a discussion with a colleague on how do you teach a child to pray?
How do you answer those “religious questions” with the children?
My first response was well, you need to read up on it first, study it so that you are not giving the kids wrong answers. Its the same thing I tell my husband. I have studied and restudied the Bible, with that being stated that does not mean that I know every finite detail of the Bible, I am comfortable enough to be able to answer specific questions. When I myself am unsure or uncomfortable I read the Bible, research the topic and ask questions.
So for my friend I found Bible Versus to use as an example as to do a short prayer using God’s own words.
For Instance Psalms 17:8:
Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me under the shadow of Your wings. Amen.
I replaced the word me from the scripture with the person or persons I am praying for. Reinforcing the prayers using Gods own words, which are Holy Texts.
- Keep our children as the apple of your eye; hide our children under the shadow of Your wings. Amen
- Keep our parents as the apple of your eye; hide our parents under the shadow of Your wings. Amen
- Keep our siblings as the apple of your eye; hide our siblings under the shadow of Your wings. Amen
- Keep our nieces/ nephews/ God children as the apple of your eye; hide our nieces/ nephews/ God children under the shadow of Your wings. Amen
- Keep our families as the apple of your eye; hide our families under the shadow of Your wings. Amen
- Keep our Pastors as the apple of your eye; hide our pastors under the shadow of Your wings. Amen
- Keep our church as the apple of your eye; hide our church under the shadow of Your wings. Amen
- Keep our friends as the apple of your eye; hide our friends under the shadow of Your wings. Amen
- Keep our islands 🇵🇷🇬🇩🇹🇹 as the apple of your eye; hide our islands 🇵🇷🇬🇩🇹🇹 under the shadow of Your wings. Amen
- Keep our country 🇺🇸 as the apple of your eye; hide our country 🇺🇸 under the shadow of Your wings. Amen
Here are other known scripture prayers and similar examples:
- Jeremiah 17:14
Heal me, O LORD, and I will be healed; save me and I will be saved, for you are the one I praise.
ex: Here you can replace the Heal me to: Heal Ms. Smith, O Lord, and Ms. SMith will be healed; save Ms. smith and she will be saved, for you are the one I praise. Add to it. I pray that you provide guidance, love, understanding for Ms. SMith’s family during this difficult time. etc.
- “But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.” – 2 Thessalonians 3:3
ex:Dear Lord who is faithful, please provide the strenght for Jane doe in her time and need so that you can give her the protection from the Evil one.
- “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” – Psalm 46:1
ex: God whom is our refuge and strenght, I ask that you be the refuge and strength for my friend xxx, who is in need of ever present help in her troubles.”
Here are other versus which can be used as prayers adding in the person or persons your are praying for:
- “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your mind in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
- Psalm 29:11 – The Lord gives strength to his people, the Lord blesses his people with peace.
- Psalm 119:165 – Great peace have those who love your law, and nothing can make them stumble.
- Isaiah 26:3 – You will keep in perfect peace those who minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.
- Matthew 11:28-30 – “Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
- Romans 15:13 – May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
- Isiah 57: 19 creating praise on their lips. Peace, peace, to those far and near,” says the LORD. “And I will heal them.”
- Mark 5:34 New International Version (NIV) 34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”
- Mark 6:56 New International Version (NIV) 56 And wherever he went—into villages, towns or countryside—they placed the sick in the marketplaces. They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed.
- Luke 8:48New International Version (NIV) 48 Then he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.”
- Isaiah 58:8New International Version (NIV) Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness[a] will go before you,
and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.
The Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9–13)
This prayer is the true classic. Most of us have said this prayer and could likely recite it right now. But there’s much more to this model that Jesus gave us than rote recitation. This is a prayer with real power: God’s kingdom coming, God’s will being done, all that we need for the day. It’s truly power packed. So, take a closer look at what it teaches:
“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 debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.”
Jonah’s Prayer for Salvation (Jonah 2:2–9)
We may never be swallowed by a great fish, but we can still experience the shame and regret that Jonah felt after he ran from God. The prophet’s plea to the Father provides a poignant scaffolding for our own prayers of repentance. And remember that God heard and answered this humble, honest prayer:
“In my distress I called to the Lord,
and he answered me.
From deep in the realm of the dead I called for help,
and you listened to my cry.
You hurled me into the depths,
into the very heart of the seas,
and the currents swirled about me;
all your waves and breakers
swept over me.
I said, ‘I have been banished
from your sight;
yet I will look again
toward your holy temple.’
The engulfing waters threatened me,
the deep surrounded me;
seaweed was wrapped around my head.
To the roots of the mountains I sank down;
the earth beneath barred me in forever.
But you, Lord my God,
brought my life up from the pit.
“When my life was ebbing away,
I remembered you, Lord,
and my prayer rose to you,
to your holy temple.
“Those who cling to worthless idols
turn away from God’s love for them.
But I, with shouts of grateful praise,
will sacrifice to you.
What I have vowed I will make good.
I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord.’”
David’s Prayer for Deliverance (Psalm 3)
This one was a tough choice because the Psalms are stuffed full of cries and petitions. If you ever want a primer for prayer, you can’t go wrong with this wisdom book. But we chose Psalm 3 because it provides a concise portrait of crying out to God in the midst of great stress. David’s words are no less relevant to our modern workplace and lifestyle as they were to his battles:
Lord, how many are my foes!
How many rise up against me!
Many are saying of me,
“God will not deliver him.”
But you, Lord, are a shield around me,
my glory, the One who lifts my head high.
I call out to the Lord,
and he answers me from his holy mountain.
I lie down and sleep;
I wake again, because the Lord sustains me.
I will not fear though tens of thousands
assail me on every side.
Deliver me, my God!
Strike all my enemies on the jaw;
break the teeth of the wicked.
From the Lord comes deliverance.
May your blessing be on your people.
Hannah’s Prayer of Praise (1 Samuel 2:1–10)
When Hannah received the child she begged God for, her first instinct is to praise the One who provided. She wants to thank Him for His greatness and His deliverance. Too often we pray before receiving, but then forget to pray after God answers. Let this prayer guide you in thanks:
“My heart exults in the Lord;
my horn is exalted in the Lord.
My mouth derides my enemies,
because I rejoice in your salvation.
“There is none holy like the Lord:
for there is none besides you;
there is no rock like our God.
Talk no more so very proudly,
let not arrogance come from your mouth;
for the Lord is a God of knowledge,
and by him actions are weighed.
The bows of the mighty are broken,
but the feeble bind on strength.
Those who were full have hired themselves out for bread,
but those who were hungry have ceased to hunger.
The barren has borne seven,
but she who has many children is forlorn.
The Lord kills and brings to life;
he brings down to Sheol and raises up.
The Lord makes poor and makes rich;
he brings low and he exalts.
He raises up the poor from the dust;
he lifts the needy from the ash heap
to make them sit with princes
and inherit a seat of honor.
For the pillars of the earth are the Lord’s,
and on them he has set the world.
“He will guard the feet of his faithful ones,
but the wicked shall be cut off in darkness,
for not by might shall a man prevail.
The adversaries of the Lord shall be broken to pieces;
against them he will thunder in heaven.
The Lord will judge the ends of the earth;
he will give strength to his king
and exalt the horn of his anointed.”
Here are some things to consider when Praying:
1. Address God’s rightful place as the Father
2. Worship and praise God for who He is and all that He has done
3. Acknowledge that it is God’s will and plans are in control and not our own
4. Ask God for the things that we need
5. Confess our sins and repent
6. Request protection and help in overcoming sin and satan’s attacks on us
I will end with the serenity Prayer:
God grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
And wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
As it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
If I surrender to His Will;
So that I may be reasonably happy in this life
And supremely happy with Him
Forever and ever in the next.
Harvey Weinstein has been much of the talks lately. Many are coming out whom have been directly affected by Harvey, and many more are coming out whom have been affected by others. You and I have all seen the way they have been coming out. #MeToo.
The Me Too movement as you know came about as a response and to bring awareness to the situation at hand since the Harvey Weinstein controversy. Since the first post about this situation “more than 53,000 people had left comments and thousands of women had declared “Me Too,” sharing their stories of rape, sexual assault and harassment across social media, including some for the first time.”
If you’ve been sexually harassed or assaulted write ‘me too’ as a reply to this tweet. pic.twitter.com/k2oeCiUf9n
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) October 15, 2017
I too included a “me too” post for the very first time. I have never shared my story, but I have undergone sexual assault and harassment. It took a lot for me to even write those two words because it meant admitting to myself that I am a victim of assault. I never reported my assailants, nor would I at this point. One of them is deceased, the other was really young when he did so. I was young myself and did not know how to talk about or process what I endured. My post also shows my family a truth about my past which I never wanted to discuss, never have discussed with them, nor do I have any intentions to further discuss with them nor my spouse.
Some may have seen it, some may have not. Those two little words I wrote in solidarity for being victimized, but any further elaboration up to that point was not going to be given. Many though chose not to admit their assaults or harassment in this movement. Many are still unable to handle such memories or just want to bury their past deep down to the bottoms of the oceans. I do not blame them.
Reminder that if a woman didn’t post #MeToo, it doesn’t mean she wasn’t sexually assaulted or harassed. Survivors don’t owe you their story.
— Alexis Benveniste (@apbenven) October 16, 2017
I commend the women whom have been able to share their stories in public. They are stronger than I am for sharing their stories along side their Me Too.
As I write this I can vividly see the faces of the two whom have harassed/assaulted me in my past. I can vividly see where I was, what I wore, What was said and what happened after the fact. I cringe at the memory. I feel repulsed by myself.
I couldn’t add more than those two words.
My family follow me on social media.
I didn’t want to disclose more than I did.
Saying me too, I said more than I ever did since my first encounter.
As mentioned earlier one of the assailants I was told passed away. Died too young. Died in a hit and run accident in Florida. It was horrendous to hear. I never wished either of the two any wrong. I forgave them both. Though I am scarred by the memories…I forgive them each time I think of it. The one who passed away shouldn’t have died the way he did. He was on his way to get milk for his infant. I cried at the news. Like I said I did forgive him. In person at that. (though I did leave him with a black eye and a few scratches to the face at our encounter).
Sometimes we are victimized not by strangers but people we know and associate with. Sometimes its a relatives. I thank God in my case neither are relatives. They were people I have known though. People I didn’t think would do such a thing.
What I ask is that Mothers of boys, lets teach our sons to respect women. Lets raise our boys not to harass or assault anyone. Teach our children boundaries. Teach our children respect overall. Teach our children “personal space”. Teach our children how would you feel if you were in those shoes? Teach our children what If it were me your mom or sibling that this had happened to. We need to make things personal in order to assess our feelings accordingly. We need to hold ourselves accountable for our own actions.
Mothers of daughters, teach your daughters to speak up. Teach your daughters to defend themselves. I may not have been able to speak up or do something the first time. The second time I did fight back. I did not turn the other check like the bible says, and I have asked for forgiveness in that. I did defend myself. I did not report to any authorities of anything nor did I file complain. I probably should have.
Remember to please not judge those victimized. No one ever asks to be raped, harassed or assaulted. It’s not something that one says Hi, I’m here, Pick me, Choose me, attack me?
It is hard.
Here are affiliated articles on the #metoo movement.:
- the atlantic
- An activist, a little girl and the heartbreaking origin of ‘Me too’
- Incredible Image Shows How the #MeToo Movement Spread Around the Globe
- Why the #MeToo Moment Is Liberating, Dispiriting, and Uncomfortable All at Once
- Two moguls down. And the #MeToo movement is just getting started
- The ‘Me Too’ Campaign Was Created By A Black Woman 10 Years Ago
- For Some Sexual Assault Survivors, Harvey Weinstein News Can Be Triggering
The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.
As with all that I do, let us end in a prayer.
Father God I thank you for another day to speak about a topic which is not spoken about often enough. Lord you are my stronghold, in the good times and in my times of trouble. Lord you are the stronghold to the many women whom have been victimized during the years. I once again come before you and seek forgiveness for my transgressions on the issues I mentioned above and I forgive those whom have caused harm to my person. God you know the situation that occurred, you know how it has affected me and why I choose not to disclose more than I did. Lord I still want to forgive my transgressors and once again ask for forgiveness for my transgressions. Lord I ask you provide strength and guidance to the many victims whom have yet found an outlet or confide in someone to discuss their circumstances and experience. May they find refuge in you so that they too can forgive and move forward. I know it is hard my Lord, but with you all things are possible. Amen.
What makes a good prayer?
Some can recite our father without batting an eye. Many of us were taught the our father since we were in pre-school.
Some pray long, extensive loud.
Others have short prayers, straight to the point some would say.
I was taught the Acts prayer growing up.
We praise and worship our lord.
We confess our sins.
We give thanks for what we have.
We bring our requests for ourselves or others.
My sons have prayers vary.
Sometimes they say “thank you Jesus for this day, god bless xyz, amen.
Sometimes they are more detailed in their prayers.
Before meals they are very specific:
“Thank you Jesus for this food amen”.
Here is what Whites devotional plan has to say: [The devotional plan is called ‘Teach Us To Pray’ by Rob White. Check it out here: ]
Some could be thinking, ‘Hey, that’s good, it’s a short prayer so I can do that easily.’ Not so fast! Do we really think that Jesus taught us to pray with something that can be rattled through in a few seconds? The problem is that this prayer is well known to most of us, and is said or sung in many places with no further thought. It is often used like a kind of mantra. So it becomes fairly meaningless.
Here’s what Jesus was doing. The rabbis in Jesus’ day taught people ‘index praying’. You know what an index is—it appears, usually at the beginning of a book, giving chapter numbers and titles. Imagine using a large book for any study or work you’re doing and finding there’s no index. How would you find your way around? On the other hand, what if there were just an index and no substance to the book? The point of the index is to act as a pointer to the substance.
That’s exactly what index praying was all about. The rabbis would provide the points for prayer, like an index, and the people would fill in the substance—their own prayers. This is the method Jesus was teaching in this prayer. Can you now see the Lords Prayer is like that? And what an index of titles!
1. Worshiping the Father
2. God’s kingdom
3. God’s will/guidance
4. Our daily needs
6. Spiritual warfare
I challenge you to find one subject, broadly speaking, that’s not covered in this prayer. No wonder Jesus taught it! Hopefully you can begin to see why it’s such a great prayer to pray and how it can help you in your prayer life.
Why is praying in this way so helpful? Because we’re obviously praying according to God’s will— and that’s something with which I often struggled as I read the verse that says, ‘This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.’ (1 John 5: 14–15). How could I be sure that what I was praying was according to his will? Surely I must have been praying according to his will if I was praying the prayer he gave.
“After saying all these things, Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son so he can give glory back to you. For you have given him authority over everyone. He gives eternal life to each one you have given him. And this is the way to have eternal life—to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, the one you sent to earth. I brought glory to you here on earth by completing the work you gave me to do. Now, Father, bring me into the glory we shared before the world began.”
“Jesus said, “This is how you should pray: “Father, may your name be kept holy. May your Kingdom come soon. Give us each day the food we need, and forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation. ””
“And we are confident that he hears us whenever we ask for anything that pleases him. And since we know he hears us when we make our requests, we also know that he will give us what we ask for.”
God thank you lord for showing us the way to connect with you and pray. Father we lift your name high for you are worthy of all the praise. Thank you lord for your love and mercy. Thank you for your words and teachings. Thank you for your guidance. Lord if I have offended anyone or sinned I come before you now for forgiveness. Lord I ask that those who wonder about prayers, whether if they are debating about if they praying enough, or praying the right way, lord I hope and pray that this series guides them. Lord our prayers are our way to connect with you. Our prayers are our way to check in with you. Our prayers are about praising you and giving thanks for everything you continue to do in our lives. Father God our prayers are also to intercede for ourselves and each other dear lord. Lord I know each need is different and every time we pray it’s because a different need is being addressed. No two prayers will ever be alike for no two days will ever be alike. Thank you again lord for all you do. Amen.
“No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
A few weeks ago my husband and I were asked to take over the children’s ministry. I must say it was rather a big surprise for us both to be considered yet felt a lot of joy to be able to do more work for God.
The past few weeks I have spent less time on my blogging and devotional materials because I have spent more time preparing for my lessons.
I am sorry for no updated messages or words of encouragement. I will try my best to incorporate some of my lessons here as well as put up as many devotionals as I can.
When we were introduced to the kids as their new teacher, the lesson for that specific day was prayer. Why do pray? Who do we pray for ? How do we pray? What do we pray about? And why is prayer important?
We saw how the kids engaged in this subject, asked questions, New the answers to some. It was a good preparation to what is to come.
We asked the teacher what were the kids doing as far as their lesson because we didn’t want to start something new if they had already began something else.
She said they just briefly scratched the surface of chapter 1 of Nehemiah.
A light bulb went off, we just finished the Nehemiah lesson in our adult Bible study. My husband is learning more about the Bible. This is perfect. We said we will continue Nehemiah. For two reasons. 1- we didn’t want to take the kids off course on something they just started. 2- the lessons of some of the things we learned were still fresh so we will be able to teach them efficiently.
Nehemiah is a man who prays often.
In 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Paul reminds us all to pray without ceasing. No matter what we do, no matter where we are we are to never stop praying. Prayers are our open channel of communication with God. Prayers are very intimate. We pray for our loved ones, our friends, our leadership, our pastors, our work, the sick, the elderly, our struggles, our desires, we pray for forgiveness for our sins, we Thank the lord for our blessings and we keep it as real as possible. Prayer is our heart pouring out it’s wants, love, gratitude, desires, thanks and praise to the Lord. I don’t think there is anyone we ever get this intimate with. He knows it all, no one, absolutely no one knows us better than he does.
A few weeks before we started this journey to teach, I have been reading about prayer. Between our lessons, my devotional and additional help. Prayer has been in my mind.
I wanted to share this devotional I found in my bible app. It’s a three part devotional.
The devotional plan is called ‘Teach Us To Pray’ by Rob White. Check it out here:
So here is day 1 of White’s plan:
Prayer can be showy. You’ve probably been in prayer gatherings where someone prays a long prayer using flowery language. Prayer is not entertainment; it’s a time of fellowship with God.
I know you can pray anywhere but there is something about having a place where we pray regularly. As I grew in my new-found zeal for prayer I began to find myself really looking forward to my prayer times sensing I was really meeting with the Father. The room in which I prayed became synonymous with those times and I would go to the room expectant that I was going to meet with God. The result was that I approached my personal prayer times with faith.
Praying for a long time, using many words or repetition doesn’t mean we are more likely to get God’s attention. I really don’t know why we feel that God will hear us more clearly like that. This Scripture makes it clear that it’s not about words, length or repetition, because God knows anyway. It’s about quality—the right heart attitude, concentrating on what we’re doing, trying to live a life that doesn’t contradict our prayer life—not quantity.
Let me explain 3D praying to you. The three Ds stand for Desire, Discipline and Delight. First, and you cannot bypass this starting point, there needs to be Desire. Desire to be a person of prayer. Without that desire, nothing will ever change. You can’t force the desire, but you can ask God to plant that in you by his Spirit.
Second, it requires Discipline. Actually, you could double the D and make it daily discipline. This is the hard part, as you’ve probably already discovered. But I want to assure you that as you face the discipline it gets a lot easier; you’ll find the third D eases it considerably.
The third D is Delight. Yes, truly prayer has become a delight for me: spending time with the Father, opening up my life with its ups and downs, hearing what he has to say to me. What’s not to like! That means that I can look forward to praying; making my way towards the place where I usually pray I’m actually expectant that I’ll meet God during that time. What a change! It’s delightful.
Associated scriptures from the Plan:
“When you pray, don’t be like the hypocrites who love to pray publicly on street corners and in the synagogues where everyone can see them. I tell you the truth, that is all the reward they will ever get. But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private. Then your Father, who sees everything, will reward you. “When you pray, don’t babble on and on as the Gentiles do. They think their prayers are answered merely by repeating their words again and again. Don’t be like them, for your Father knows exactly what you need even before you ask him!”
“Loving God means keeping his commandments, and his commandments are not burdensome.”
“Once Jesus was in a certain place praying. As he finished, one of his disciples came to him and said, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.””
Mr. White mentions his 3ds of prayer, Desire, Discipline and Delight.
We have to desire this with all our might. We need to be disciplined in our prayers so that we are not rambling away. We need to take delight in praying to God. We need to want it, have that passion and fire for prayer, we need to be disciplined in our time with God but in what we speak to God about. We need to enjoy our time with God. It’s the most precious time of our time with him.
Father God I thank you for the wonderful blessings you have bestowed in my life. I know I am undeserving of these blessings, but you have blessed me none the less. You have shown me love, kindness, mercy and forgives. Lord I know many like myself have this passion and desire to spend more time with you in prayer. The person reading this might need your help in their desires. I am asking to intercede for them so they can desire praying with you. Discipline is an important factor in praying dear lord, we need to take our prayers with you seriously for this is very intimate as well. I am asking to intercede for those whom need more discipline in their prayers with you, may your words guide them with the discipline they need to pray with you. Lord I take delight in praying to you. I take delight in our time. This comes with both desire and discipline in ones prayer. May everyone found the delight passion and joy that prayer gives. Amen.
Too Many To Count from Daily Bible Inspirations. By Darla Noble
In John 21:24-25, the disciple John tells us that there isn’t enough room in the world to hold the books that could have been written describing all of the miracles Jesus did on earth. The same is true when it comes to recording all the blessings He has given us.
If I were to list all the blessings God has given me, well, I couldn’t. There are simply too many to count. And quite honestly, I’m sure that I’ve forgotten some of them. But just because I won’t take the time or space to list them here, doesn’t mean I cannot and should not spend time each day recounting the day’s blessings and thanking God for each of them.
Recounting the blessings of each day with a thankful heart—this is my challenge to you. Today and every day, take time to let God know just how grateful you are for His many gifts. And share that joy with others, so that they, too, can enjoy the blessings God has for them.
Pray: Thank you, LORD, for all You do for me. There are no numbers high enough to count Your many blessings in my life. You are to be praised! In the Name of Jesus, I pray, Amen.
◦ What great things has the Lord done for you? If you can name them.
◦ Make a list of what you considered to be your greatest blessings.
◦ Who will you share this good news with?
Adding my two cents:
The author of this devotional I read was indeed right, if I were to list every blessing God has given me I can’t. Some I may have forgotten, some I may have not even realized was a blessing.
John is right, there isn’t enough books to write every detail of every blessing Jesus has given or miracle he has performed.
I gave general themes of my blessings, not specific details of events. Imagine if each apostle, each disciple were able to jot down every single blessing and miracle Jesus performed, my guess they would still be writing today.
Let’s see what I am able to jot down.
What has the lord blessed me with?
My job…. these are all in the grander scale of things, which I am eternally grateful for.
He has blessed me with knowledge.
Blessed me with my love of reading and further seeking knowledge, this has helped ground, mold and bring me even closer to God.
He has blessed me with love, not just from my family but from friends.
He has blessed me with opportunities to make a difference and help others.
He has blessed me in always ensuring I get to my destinations safe and sound.
He has blessed me with his protection and his guidance.
He has blessed me a lot more than I can recall.
Every breath that I take in itself is a blessing.
Every step I am allowed to take without assistance is a blessing.
Every word I utter initself is a blessing.
Every thought I can formulate is a blessing.
Think of those less fortunate than you.
I have clean clothes.
I can bathe/shower.
I have food.
I can cook a hot meal for my family.
I can purchase food to prepare my meal.
I can purchase clothes when in need.
I have a bed.
I have a comforter.
I have a quilt.
These basic necessities that I have, others don’t. That I a blessing. I may not always sit down and think about those blessings, but they are indeed.
The fact that I make enough money to have my bare necessities and every now and then treat myself, my family, my church is a blessing.
Many are not able.
I was blessed with a generous heart.
I was blessed with a compassionate heart.
I am blessed….just for being able to write, rationalize and share my experiences with the lord. Whether it is my own preachings to myself, or like this piece where I reflect after sharing a devotional I read.
This list of blessings are just a fraction of the blessings I have received.
I haven’t even included:
All which truly worthy of mentioning.
John is right.
There are not enough books.
Not enough paper
Not enough time to list each and everyone.
I will end with an additional prayer.
Father God I thank you for every blessing you have blessed me with. Each blessing has made my relationship with you stronger. Each blessing has allowed me to grow closer with you. Each blessing has been a life learning lesson. Each blessing came from you, and you alone. Some blessings are meant to be shared, so others can be blessed by them. Some blessings are meant for me to savor and learn from them. I thank you again and everyone of them. I look forward to the blessings which have yet to come. I ask you father to bless whomever may be reading this. Someone reading this may have a need that is beyond their own ability to achieve their need, I am interceding for you, reading this in need, that not only will God provide, not only will God bless you, but you will testify of his greatness in your life. I do not know who you are who needs this, but I feel it, I feel it from the depths of my soul, you will read this, and you will know this prayer is specifically for you. In the name of the father, son and Holy Spirit Amen.
We recently did a study of Nehemiah at our church’s Bible study at the end of the last year. In a recent post I mentioned how the pastoral leadership has made some changes which include my husband and I being selected to oversee the children’s ministry. We were honored, scared, over joyed, overwhelmed, felt unqualified and still accepted the offer knowing that the Joy of our Lord, and doing his will is our strength.
When I spoke to the retiring teacher who will assist us during the transitional week what lesson she is doing with the kids, she said Nehemiah. Though she said she only covered one chapter with the kids, that I could do whatever lesson I wanted once we take over, I chose not to interfere with the kids current lesson and to begin anew one after.
God thank you for the strength, knowledge and for preparing our way for this moment.
So I am redoing the Nehemiah study with the young ones (ages 3-9). So now my mind starts going, how can I make this lesson fun, engaging, memorable? My husband and I begin to bounce ideas back and forth. He claims to be my assistant, I laughed because what he doesn’t realize just yet is that this lesson is perfect for him to get his feet wet since he just learned Nehemiah. God doesn’t do anything by chance.
We agreed to do a team building unit.
Since the book of Nehemiah shows how the people of Jerusalem, the levites, the tribe of Benjamin and their priests worked together around the clock to build these walls in 52 days. The entire unit is a team building unit because of the wonderful example within the scriptures that also emphasizes how everyone made it happen. As part of our team building unit our class will build the wall of Jerusalem out of Legos. The goal is that they will work together to plan, to build and then to display to the congregation what they built and what they have learned. How they applied the scriptures they will learn into their task at hand. We will also ask them how they can apply this lesson into their daily lives, since we are to apply the principals we learn from the Bible into our daily lives.
I find strength and comfort in knowing that we will be doing God’s work. I find strength and comfort in knowing that we will be assisting in the walks of these children. I find strength and comfort in knowing that God has paved the way for this moment, for us to make a difference in these lives. I find strength and comfort that when I am uncertain, God will provide, when I am scared, god will relieve me from the fear, when I feel week, god will give me strength. I find comfort in knowing that this will give God Joy.
Father God I want to thank you for this opportunity. I want to thank you for entrusting me and my husband on this journey. Lord we want to ask you that give us the knowledge,and confidence needed to teach your word and be of a blessing to these children. God we have the tools you have provided us, we know need to delve deeper into your word to be prepared for the questions they may ask. Thank you lord again for this opportunity … we want to make you proud. Amen
But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. 2 Corinthians 4:7
“Do you want to see what’s inside?” my friend asked. I had just complimented her on the old-fashioned rag doll her daughter held in her small arms. Instantly curious, I replied that yes, I very much wanted to see what was inside. She turned the doll face down and pulled open a discreet zipper sewn into its back. From within the cloth body, Emily gently removed a treasure: the rag doll she’d held and loved throughout the years of her own childhood more than two decades prior. The “outer” doll was merely a shell without this inner core to give it strength and form.
Paul describes the truth of Jesus’s life, death, and resurrection as a treasure, carried about in the frail humanity of God’s people. That treasure enables those who trust in Him to bear up under unthinkable adversity and continue in their service. When they do, His light—His life—shines brightly through the “cracks” of their humanness. Paul encourages us all not to “lose heart” (2 Corinthians 4:16) because God strengthens us to do His work.
Like the “inner” doll, the gospel-treasure within us lends both purpose and fortitude to our lives. When God’s strength shines through us, it invites others to ask, “What’s inside?” We can then unzip our hearts and reveal the life-giving promise of salvation in Christ.
Thank You, Lord, for saving me. Please shine Your light brightly through my broken life so others will be invited to know You too.
The gospel of truth shines through the brokenness of God’s people.
You can make a difference.
Second Corinthians 4 describes how God’s Love mends broken people. We see evidence of this life-change in the story of Zacchaeus, a man who made large profits by overtaxing his people. When Jesus called him out of his sin, Zacchaeus instantly vowed: “if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times that amount” (Luke19:1-10). His actions demonstrated his changed life.
How do God’s actions demonstrate God’s work in your life?
Recently God’s work has made a transformative change not just in my life, not just in my home but in our Church as well. Since the New Year, the past 3 sermons led by our pastor have been in the notion of different.
Lesson 1- was about Peter and the fishermen. How they were out in the sea trying to fish and were unable to catch any fish, Jesus approached them and asked them to take them the boat back out and throw the nets back into the water. Sure enough they caught fish in abundance. Then followed Jesus to become fisher of men. They were transformed after being with Jesus and were now different men tban what they were before .
Lesson 2- we discussed Noah, how Noah was used by God to be different. Noah followed god’s instructions and left everything he knew in order to follow Jesus. Noah also followed god’s commands in building the ark. Everyone thought he was crazy, but nonetheless when the floods began Noah, his family and two of every animal were with him in the ark, protected by God. He had to be different to be saved.
Lesson 3 – being different. On the third lesson we did a recap of the previous two lessons. Then discussed Saul, whom on the road to Damascus persecuting the followers of Jesus after the resurrection, saul had an encounter with Jesus, Jesus blinded him, then gave him back his vision, Saul whom we now call Paul, was transformed so much so, he now led the building of the church and ministering of Jesus. No longer was he the Saul whom persecuted the Christians. He was now one of the followers leading the movement of the risen living God. He too was now different. Our lessons all in all were about the changes that happen in our lives which makes us grow and yet makes us doffeeenr than the person we were the day before.
In the midst of these lessons The Pastor has approached a few members to take up a big responsibility. In my home I have been praying for unity and for God to show me how I could be of better use for him. The pastor approached us and asked us to take the lead in the youth and children’s ministry respectively. We all accepted. God was making moves which touched all of us deeply, and now we get to sit back and fully embrace his blessing to be of a blessing to others.
I know this devotion was about the gifts and treasures we have inside due to Christ….. but it got me thinking with the insight question it came with…How do God’s actions demonstrate God’s work in your life?All in all his works allows us to be able to use our gifts and treasures. We can all use our talents, our knowledge respectfully to continue to do God’s will.
Father God I humbly thank you for the difficult task at hand. Yet I know we will all be transformed and different from this experience. I know we will all get to bear fruits as well as discover the fruits and treasures others have. I ask and pray for continued guidance so we can teach and plan according to your will. Amen.
I tell my kids all the time when we are unable to physically make it to church. As song as we are here, worshipping alongside the live stream broadcast or doing our own bible study lesson with each other the presence of the lord is evermore present as if we were at church congregating with our fellow church members. It can be just as a blessing. The important is that we focus on God, learning about God, praying to God and worshipping God.
Always remember whenever you are, as long as there are two or three or more in worship God is there. Don’t be shy, don’t be embarrassed about your location, don’t fuss about circumstances you cannot control. Put all trust in God’s hands.
The other day during this article blast we had post post the cyclone bomb, line many in the northeast battling frozen or busted pipes, my household experienced the same thing. Our main water heater pipe froze.
My day in Meme…. I joked that day, because we cannot freak out when things don’t start out the way you hoped. I literally created memes to discuss my day. Yet my children and I gathered to still watch the livestream of our church’s sermon. Part of the days message said…. you have to do something different.
. I joked about the situation as it was happening and even after because stressing, freaking out was not an option.
We put trust in God that it wasn’t going to be that bad and it will be fixed… and just like that God is good. My pipes were frozen, but at least it did not burst. Now we not only have heat and hot water again, but the sermon was a play by play of the actions we took in our faith in God in our given situation.
Knowing it could be worse, but having faith it will not get there.:.. as we listened to the sermon I thanked the lord…. because it could’ve been worse. On another note… we had cake too. I made sure my kids stood warm while the problem was addressed…. and nothing solves problems better than ones faith in God and home made Cake…. 🙂
But honestly like Olaf the kids and I joked about needing warm hugs lol
Todita all is well.
Our house is fine.
The point of the story, we gathered our faith and trust in God. Not only was he ever present, but the sermon of the day spoke to us directly. God fixed our situation by guiding my husband and in no time our pipe was unfrozen and things were back to normal.
Father God I thank you for the events that took place. Not only were we able to confide in you for strength and refuge dear lord knowing you would provide. We trusted that you would provide, but you also confirmed our actions with that days sermon. We thank you for guiding us, inspiring us and making sure we had everything we needed. Though I joked about the cake dear lord, it was comforting to know that you put that thought to make the cake and we listened. It helped keep us warm while we awaited things to get fixed. I thank you again dear lord Amen.
David C. McCasland
At the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth. Philippians 2:10
Cleopatra, Galileo, Shakespeare, Elvis, Pelé. They are all so well known that they need only one name to be recognized. They have remained prominent in history because of who they were and what they did. But there is another name that stands far above these or any other name!
Before the Son of God was born into this world, the angel told Mary and Joseph to name Him Jesus because “he will save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21), and “he . . . will be called the Son of the Most High” (Luke 1:32). Jesus didn’t come as a celebrity but as a servant who humbled Himself and died on the cross so that anyone who receives Him can be forgiven and freed from the power of sin.
The apostle Paul wrote, “God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:9–11).
In our times of greatest joy and our deepest need, the name we cling to is Jesus. He will never leave us, and His love will not fail.
Jesus, You are the name above all names, our Savior and Lord. We lift our praise to You as we celebrate Your presence and power in our lives today.
I am adding a special prayer to the end of this article:
Father God I thank you for everything you do in my life. I thank you for the blood of Jesus that washed away my sins and saved me from damnation. God I thank you for the love and protection you offer my family and loved ones. The world may know the names of Cleopatra, Galileo, Shakespeare, Elvis, Pelé for their achievements and advancements in their fields of expertise, but your name will be righteous and superior above all names. Thank you father.- Amen