Communicating with God

Father

ourfather2The following is regarding your personal prayer, praying for others and intercessory prayer, is something else.

Matthew 6:8 “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him. 9 In this manner, therefore, pray:

Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
10 Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.
13 And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

In Matthew 6 Jesus gave us a form of prayer.  You can say it as is, or you can modify and add two it. But do note very little of this prayer deals with what we need, and none of it deals with what we want.

Jesus continues to tell us that God knows what we need and what we want, and if only we will put our eyes on the Father, everything else will be taken care of

Matthew 6: 25 “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?

28 “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; 29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

This prayer is broken up into 5 parts

Part 1

Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.

Acknowledging that God is God, that he is superior, above us in all things, and in this way we humble ourselves before Him.  As the bible says God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. So first in prayer is putting ourselves in a position of humility. But more than that..this Almighty God is no stranger to us, He is no task master. He is our Father. He cares for us. He loves us, and we come to him not as supplicants or slaves, but as children

Part 2
10 Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.

Placing yourself into obedience to God. Allowing HIS will to be preeminent in our lives.  THY WILL BE DONE….and again the words were said by Jesus as he faced death, “not my will but thine be done”. Obedience to the will of God, in all things

Part 3
11 Give us this day our daily bread.

Our needs, simple short and complete. Give us what we need Lord, and leaving what that is to him.

Part 4
12 And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.

Cleanse us from our sins, forgive us our error, make us right and holy with you God. And as you forgive us, we will forgive, that is forego the right to punish, others

Part 5
13 And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.

Help us in our walk, help keep us holy, and upright as we walk each day, knowing that while we may stumble on a daily basis, like the Mannah that sustain your people, your mercies are new every morning

And finally the reason why we pray, because He is in control, He can provide and to His Glory He will provide
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

So take heart people of God, and do not worry.  God has you in his hands and He will provide.

Waiting on the Lord

Waiting

waitingPsalms 130:5-6 “I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, and in his word I hope; my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning.”
Psalms 27:13-14 I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living! Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD
Isaiah 40:31 but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.

Patience may be a virtue, but sometimes it seems impossible.  But you must let the Lord have His time, because He is preparing something wonderful for you.  Like a great feast it can’t be hurried, or it simply will not be nearly as good.

Thanksgiving, is a week and a day away, and it is a perfect example in the reward of patience.

It starts the day before as side dishes are prepared and the smells of pies and stuffing fill the house, but not yet.

Then the next morning , bright and early the turkey is prepared, and stuffed, and covered with wonderful smelling spices, and then for the next six hours you are tormented by the smells most wonderful, but not yet.

Then people start coming over bringing dishes that look absolutely wonderful and smell great and they are set on the side board, all wonderful and inviting, but not yet.

Then the turkey comes out of the oven in all its golden glory and adds to the symphony of smells enticing in all its ways, but it has to sit for at least a half hour. So, not yet.

And then the moment comes when everything is ready and laid out on the table, glistening gravy, sumptuous turkey, mashed potatoes and stuffing, but first we have to remember why we are here! We have to give our thanks, so not yet

And then it is time to feast.  a feast made some much sweeter because of the waiting and anticipation.

Imagine if you tried to eat the turkey raw, and the potatoes in their skin….it wouldn’t be nearly as nice. So let God have his time to prepare what He is bringing you.

Besides there are his blessings and grace that will hold you in the mean time.  They are the chips and dip and cold cuts of the day. Just don’t fill up on those, because the feast is coming

When the devil pushes you down-push back

push back

Humble Resistance

runJames 4: 

But He gives more grace. Therefore He says:

“God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble.”

Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. 

This fight we are fighting in our life is a curious thing. This enemy we have is only allowed to inflict us, if we allow him to.  He requires our complete acquiescence.  He knows this, and is very clever. He won’t come at you straight on, he will come at you sideways, whispering temptations and doubts in your ear, preying on your fears, your weakness and most importantly. your pride.  He has to convince you to let him in and fiddle about.   And make no mistake he is very good at his job, and on our own we easily fall victim to his machinations.

But we are not alone.   Not by a long shot. We have, if we remember, our Big Brother Jesus standing behind us, and he has already  beaten satan and our enemy wants no part of Him.  The enemy wants to lure us away from Him, from our faith and our reliance on Jesus. To pull us out to the dry places where he can push you down.

But if that old devil wants to push you down, push him back.

Submit your life to God, if you’ve been pulled away by worry, fear, desires or pride; repent! Get yourself right with Jesus, submitted to His will, then and only then can you turn around and bare your teeth at the enemy and he will flee. Don’t let the enemy snare you with his whispers and if he does, remember this scripture.

Romans 8: 31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can beagainst us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who ishe who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

Be Content Where Ever You Are.

Be Content

 

romans-8_25Philippians 4

10 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at last your care for me has flourished again; though you surely did care, but you lacked opportunity.11 Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: 12 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. 13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Matthew 3

31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

The message today is a simple one, where ever you are in your life, God is with you, and unless you stumbled out into the wilderness alone, He has you there for a reason. His reason.  And if you did go blundering out on your own, he is bringing you back.  So be content.

This does not mean you should have a lack of ambition or goals. It simply means you should not stew in bitterness and dissatisfaction because of where you happen to be at the moment.  God has the long view in mind and He will get you where you want to go. Most likely if you are following Him, he put those desires in your heart to begin with.  Because He knows what you want and what you need and He has chosen the best for you with those in mind.

When I was a kid, we took a trip from San Jose to Anaheim California, about eight hours.  It was the longest trip in the world, looking out the window, seeing hundreds of cows, dry land, farms and countless other monotonous images. The trip was made more intense by what was waiting at the end….Disneyland.  I could hardly stand it, soon farms gave way to freeways , and concrete vistas and yet we were still more than an hour away. I was beside myself because i didn’t not understand what I understand now. If I wanted to enjoy Disneyland, then the cows and the farms and the miles and the hours were part of that process.

Well we may be in a very uninteresting and even difficult part of our lives right now, but remember, the reward is coming, and if you can’t enjoy the moments along the way, at least be content in them knowing that in the end, its all worth it.

Be still and know that I am God

futureAs we go through life we go through trials and tests that move us to doubt, that move us to fear that move us to wonder what God has in mind, we don’t always see the purpose of what we are going through, but God does. Who better than God can decide what is best for us?  If you are in one of those trials I would encourage you, as God is encouraging me, to be still, and know that he is God.

I used to pray for my will, but then I realized God has the advantage of knowing what is down the road for us, that we don’t. The dry spells we pass through  while following Him are really for our benefit, in a way we cannot see.  Because we are not omniscient, we do know what awaits us.  All we can know is that God is with us, and he will never leave us, nor forsake us.  So trust in God. Be still and know He is God.

Psalm 46

God is our refuge and strength,
A very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear,
Even though the earth be removed,
And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
Though its waters roar and be troubled,
Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah

There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God,
The holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved;
God shall help her, just at the break of dawn.
The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved;
He uttered His voice, the earth melted.

The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah

Come, behold the works of the Lord,
Who has made desolations in the earth.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariot in the fire.

10 Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!

11 The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah

Learning to be the light

burning candle

Luke 11

33 “No one, when he has lit a lamp, puts it in a secret place or under a basket, but on a lamp stand, that those who come in may see the light.

Romans 10

13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

14 How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?

In today’s world, the last thing anyone wants to do is to stand up for the truth. To preach the word of God and face the desecration of foolish. But it is Christ in you, that is your hope of glory and theirs.  Because there is no other way they are going to hear about Christ except if a Christian tells them. Because it is not the written word on the page that can bring them salvation, it is the living word in you, made alive by the indwelling holy spirit, that you speak, which sparks the light of faith in the lost.

Romans 10

17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Now we have churches and preachers and pastors who are out there doing the job and in a church surrounded by thousands of candles, yours adds little to the light. But more an more the people we need to reach are in the outer darkness where one candle can break the power of a cloying darkness.

We don’t have to stand on a rock and be a street preacher, but everyone who knows us should know that Jesus is our Lord, and our life and words should reflect that. Never let world shame you into keep quiet, your flame may be the only thing that can light their candle.

Romans 1: 

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes

Shine your light, regardless of those who want to hide it. And your Father in heaven will be pleased

Never Give Up – Jesus is in your corner


boxing2Hebrews 13: 5-6

For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So we may boldly say:

“The Lord is my helper;
I will not fear.
What can man do to me?”

Wisdom is where you find it, and this quote from the movie “Rocky Balboa” has always registered with me:

Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place, and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward; how much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done

As a Christian we are in a fight. Some times we are on top, and sometimes we are on bottom, but we must never give up, we must never give in, because Jesus is in our corner and He has a plan, and as long as we have a plan and a desire to be “more than conquerors” we will battle out of our situation and find victory.

God never promised that we would have a trouble free life, but he did promise to help us in our troubles. To take care of us. so hold on to those promises.

In spiritual issues

Romans 8: 

31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?36 As it is written:

“For Your sake we are killed all day long;
We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”

37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come,39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

And world issues like money and food.

Matthew 6

31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

When you are in the depths of your trial and you want to cover and whimper, that is when you have to come out punching even harder…. and move forward.  Praising God, thanking Him for His victory and walking like you have already won!

Turn your eyes upon Jesus

Daily BreadDaily Bread  11-2-2016

Matthew 11:

28 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

 

Life is tough. Moments it can seem to overwhelm you until you feel you are sinking. At these times, you must turn your eyes upon Jesus.   He has your whole life in your hand and as long as you follow Him, His will be in your life.  Sometimes that means wandering in a seemingly never ending wilderness, but even there his provision is at hand. He will get you through it and deliver you to His promised land.

Never give up on God, for He will never give up on you.

Isaiah 40:26

26 Lift up your eyes on high,
And see who has created these things,
Who brings out their host by number;
He calls them all by name,
By the greatness of His might
And the strength of His power;
Not one is missing.

Turn your eyes upon Jesus and all the troubles in the world….will fade

Today’s Bible Reading