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Old 09-07-22, 14:13   #1201
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

The Command “Follow Me”


John Bailey

The world is filled with a lot of brokenness. People are looking for answers and purpose in their lives. This generation has so many fears and doubts, trying to figure out who God is and what he wants from us.
One of the gospel writers in particular would’ve understood this well. Matthew probably grew up in a traditional Jewish home; he’d heard all the Old Testament stories and seen all the religion. Something had gone wrong, though; he’d become a tax collector for the Roman Empire, and they were put in the same category as harlots, traitors and sinners. In his gospel, Matthew gives a bit of his testimony. “As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax office. And he said to him, ‘Follow me.’ So he arose and followed him” (Matthew 9:9, ESV).
Matthew would’ve had all the money and religious know-how, and yet on the inside, he was so broken and empty. Then he had a revelation of Jesus. He would’ve lost his job in order to follow after Christ. He probably gave up his wealth and perhaps even lost relationships with his family. He would’ve faced persecution from the religious leaders of his day. According to church history, he became a missionary to North Africa and was ultimately martyred for the gospel.
I’m certain that if you could ask Matthew, “Would you do it all again? Would you follow Christ out of that tax booth, knowing how your life would change, what it would cost you?” he would answer, “Yes. A hundred times over.”
There’s something so defining about the authority, power and love of God when we really encounter it. I think God is calling us to rise up because the church and the world desperately needs to see God’s heart lived out for them. Just as Jesus wanted to heal in Matthew’s generation, God wants to move again in this generation. This is the expression of Christ’s compassion that Matthew witnessed and wrote about: “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest” (Matthew 9:37-38).
We exist for the purpose of bringing the Word and the power of the Holy Spirit to broken spaces. Just like with Matthew, Christ says to us, “Follow me.” If you obey, your life will never be the same.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 10-07-22, 14:35   #1202
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A Warning That Is Coming To Life | Don't Ignore This Verse Any Longer

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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 11-07-22, 22:36   #1203
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

A Song of Grief and Praise



In the introduction to Psalm 9, David wrote that this song was for the death of a son. That's pretty sad. We don’t know which son he was referencing. Maybe it was about the loss of his infant son with Bathsheba. Maybe it was Absalom’s murder. It could have even been for Jonathan after he was killed in battle. We don't know exactly what David was thinking of when he titled this song; but when we read it, we can clearly see that God had done something miraculous in his life.
Even though David said this song was about the death of a son, the first two lines read, “I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will recount all of your wonderful deeds. I will be glad and exult in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High” (Psalm 9:1-2, ESV). A few lines later, he adds, “But the Lord sits enthroned forever; he has established his throne for justice, and he judges the world with righteousness; he judges the peoples with uprightness” (Psalm 9:7-8).
When I was reading that, it didn't make any sense to me. How many people lose a child and are able to say, “God has seen me through the battle that I've been in. He's helped me process my grief. He's helped me understand how I can survive when my child has died. Praise the Lord. I offer thanks with my whole heart.”
How do we learn to sing that kind of song? The songs some of us are singing right now are more lament than anything else. If you need to sing a song of grief and sorrow right now, sing! Know that God hears you, and scripture promises, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God” (2 Corinthians 1:3-4).
I know that in the Lord’s timing and in his presence, I will walk through his healing process. Then I will be able to take my grief and sing it in a new way. Because we’ve all been hurt and lost loved ones, that gracious promise should give us great hope.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 13-07-22, 14:52   #1204
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

A Friend of Sinners



In the gospel of Luke, we read the story of a Pharisee named Simon who invited Jesus to his house to have a meal. I’m not sure why any Pharisee would invite Jesus for dinner, let alone bring in other strict religious men to eat with him. A likely reason for the invitation was that Simon and his friends wanted to determine whether Jesus was a prophet or, really, to discount him as one. The passage makes clear that Simon knew of Jesus’ reputation as a prophet (see Luke 7:39).
Scripture doesn’t tell us what this group discussed around that supper table, but we can assume it had to do with theology. The Pharisees specialized in the subject, and they had tried to trick Jesus on other occasions with fanciful questions. Christ knew what was in these men’s hearts, and it quickly became clear. The next thing we read is that a woman of the streets “who was a sinner” crashed the scene. Here I see Jesus showing us where our focus must be, not on false religion or false teachers but on sinners.
Jesus clearly stated “’Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little.’ Then he said to her, ‘Your sins are forgiven. …Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.’” (Luke 7:47-48, 50, NKJV). Jesus was revealing why he came here : to befriend and restore the fallen, the friendless, those overtaken by sin. He is saying to us today, “This is what my ministry is all about.”
Likewise, says the apostle Paul, this is what our focus must be. We are not to judge a fallen person but to seek to restore them and remove their reproach. In fact, he said the test of true spirituality is a readiness to restore a fallen person. “Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted” (Galatians 6:1). Paul then quickly added this instruction of Christ’s way: “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2). What is the law of Christ? It is love. “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another” (John 13:34).
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 15-07-22, 14:54   #1205
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Take the Lowest Seat!



In the gospels, Jesus was invited by a certain chief Pharisee to his house. Other Pharisees had been invited as well, men who were leading keepers of the law. When the host called his guests to be seated, there was a sudden scramble for the chief seats at the head table. Scripture tells us that Jesus “noted how they chose the best places” (Luke 14:7, NKJV). It was a brazen display of pride, a need to be seen and recognized.
When Christ himself sat down to eat, he gave that roomful of Israel’s top religious leaders this word of rebuke. “When you are invited by anyone to a wedding feast, do not sit down in the best place, lest one more honorable than you be invited by him; and he who invited you and him come and say to you, ‘Give place to this man,’ and then you begin with shame to take the lowest place. But when you are invited, go and sit down in the lowest place, so that when he who invited you comes he may say to you, ‘Friend, go up higher.’ Then you will have glory in the presence of those who sit at the table with you. For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted” (Luke 14:8-11).
As he considered his audience at that Pharisee’s house, he was describing a particular type of leader: those who “love greetings in the marketplaces, the best seats in the synagogues, and the best places at feasts…for a pretense make long prayers” (Luke 20:46-47). In short, Jesus tells us, there are men and women who do good works only to be seen by others. These people love the spotlight and are constantly blowing a trumpet for themselves.
This applies to ministers, but it is also a word for every child of God. We must take this particular word from the Lord very seriously.
Why exactly did Jesus put so much importance on “Take the lowest seat in the house”? If we obey this command, Christ can then invite us to “come up higher” into a place of righteous honor and enter into the fullness of God’s touch. It opens our hearts to the call to have a richer intimacy with Christ. Only then will we become a more convincing, sure and righteous oracle of the Lord.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 16-07-22, 16:40   #1206
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

The Brook of God’s Provision



Before the confrontation between Elijah and the false prophets took place on the top of Mount Carmel, the Lord gave Elijah specific instructions… He had just declared that there would be no rain for the next few years, and now he heard God telling him, “Go to this brook and camp out there. Birds are going to come and feed you” (see 1 Kings 17:1-4). How many of us would rather come up with a plan that sounds a bit more logical? Yet at these very moments we must remember that God’s ways are not our ways; his thoughts are higher than our thoughts.
After a while, Elijah probably got rather comfortable living by the brook. In his heart, he may have thought, This is wonderful! The rain has stopped, and God is preparing the nation to turn back to him. As for me, I have this refreshing water here every day. …God left me here in a safe place.
Elijah represents a type of person today who lies by a spiritual brook, opening the Bible every day, enjoying the cool water and supernatural provision of God anytime he wants. Meanwhile, despair is all around him; people are confused; others are losing their jobs. All the while, he simply concludes, I’m just going to ride out the storm here. If that was Elijah’s plan, it certainly backfired. God moved him on from that place back into the lives of suffering people.
We may camp around the promises of God for a season, but there always comes a point when God must provoke us to move on and respond to the cry of those around us. We are not to turn a blind eye to the pressing needs all around us, settling for a shallow Christianity with no power, no provision, no purpose and nothing to give. Instead, I am confident that investing in people will once again become the hallmark of the true Church of Jesus Christ.
Here is the truth that will become known again in our generation: “Is this not the fast that I have chosen: To loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, to let the oppressed go free, and that you break every yoke?” (Isaiah 58:6, NKJV). Those who know God and are willing to obey him will reach out to people who are losing heart.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 19-07-22, 14:30   #1207
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Pour Out Your Prayers



I want this to encourage those who need an answer to prayer, who need help in a time of trouble and who are ready and willing to move God’s heart according to his Word.
First, lay hold of this covenant promise in the book of Psalms. “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1, NKJV). The phrase ‘very present’ means always available and immediate. Faith must rest in the assurance that God’s Spirit is abiding in you at all hours of the day and night. Because he took up a habitation in you, he listens to your every prayerful thought and cry. We know that if he hears us, he will grant our petitions. The Holy Spirit will move heaven and earth for any child of God who takes time to pour out his heart to the Father with unrushed, unhurried time in his presence.
In Psalm 62:5-7, we are shown the prayer of David that touched God’s heart. David says, “Wait on God only. Expect help from no other source. He alone must be your source, your only hope and defense. Only he can supply you with the strength to keep going until your answer comes.”
When you become wholly dependent on the Lord alone — when you stop looking for man to help you and trust God for the supernatural — nothing will be able to shake you. Nothing can move you into fits or pits of despair. David declared, “I shall not be moved” (Psalm 62:6).
Now the heart of it all, the secret to prevailing prayer that every saint throughout history has learned, is the pouring out of the heart before the Lord. “Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us. Selah” (Psalm 62:8). God will hear and answer you when he sees you’re willing to shut off all media for a season, cry out your heart, pour it out before him and trust he will respond.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 21-07-22, 17:26   #1208
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Christ’s Love in Us



To be Christ-like is to acknowledge Jesus in others. In my travels, I meet many precious men and women whom I know are given wholly to the Lord. The moment I meet them, my heart leaps. Even though we’ve never met before, I have a witness from the Holy Spirit that they are full of Christ. In greeting them, I always say the one thing I would want others to say of me: “Brother, sister, I see Jesus in you.”
Christ-likeness has to do with how I treat those outside my family, loving others as he loves us. It also means loving our enemies, those who hate us, who spitefully use us, who aren’t capable of loving us. We’re to do this expecting nothing in return.
Loving this way is impossible in human terms. There aren’t any how-to books, any sets of principles or any amount of human intelligence to show us how to love our enemies as Christ loved us. Nevertheless, we are commanded to do it, and we are to do it with an ever-increasing purpose. So, how do we accomplish this? How do I love the Muslim man who spit in my face a block from our church? How do I love the people who run websites calling me a false prophet? How do I love homosexuals who parade down Fifth Avenue carrying signs declaring, “Jesus Was Gay”?
I don’t even know how to love other Christians in my own ability. How do I truly love those who actively come against me?
It has to be the work of the Holy Spirit. Jesus prayed to the Father, “I have declared to them your name, and will declare it, that the love with which you loved me may be in them, and I in them” (John 17:26, NKJV). Christ asks the Father to put his love in us. He promises that the Holy Spirit will show us how to live out that love.
The Holy Ghost will faithfully gather up all the ways Christ loved others and show it to you (see John 16:15). Indeed, the Spirit delights in showing us more of Jesus. It’s the reason he dwells in our bodily temples, to teach Christ to us. “The Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you” (John 14:25-26).
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 26-07-22, 18:48   #1209
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Praying for Our Enemies



Scripture solemnly commands us, “Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do” (Colossians 3:12-13, NKJV).
Bearing with someone and forgiving them are two different issues. Bearing with someone, or forbearing, means ceasing from all acts and thoughts of revenge. It says, in other words, “Don’t take matters into your own hands. Instead, endure the hurt. Lay the matter down and leave it alone.”
We are given a powerful example of this admonition in David’s life. He was in a vengeful rage toward a wicked man named Nabal because Nabal refused to help him when he needed help. David swore revenge, but he obeyed God’s counsel, “Do not avenge yourself… Let the Lord fight your battle.” That situation was resolved in a timely manner, and David praised God for his intervention (see 1 Samuel 25).
David had another opportunity for easy revenge when he found his pursuer, Saul, asleep in a cave where David himself was hiding. David’s men urged him, “This is God’s doing. He has delivered Saul into your hands. Kill him now! Avenge yourself.” However, David forbore, instead cutting off a piece of Saul’s garment so he could later prove he could have killed him. Such wise actions are God’s ways of putting our enemies to shame. In that case, Saul saw David’s proof and responded, “You are more righteous than I; for you have rewarded me with good, whereas I have rewarded you with evil” (1 Samuel 24:17).
Jesus never said the work of forgiving would be easy. When he commanded, “Love your enemies,” the Greek word for “love” does not mean “affection” but “moral understanding.” Simply put, forgiving someone isn’t a matter of stirring up human affection but making a moral decision to remove hatred from our hearts.
Forgiveness encompasses two other commandments that Christ gave his followers. “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you” (Matthew 5:44).
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 27-07-22, 16:43   #1210
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Seeds of Jealousy and Envy



We all have seeds of jealousy and envy in us. The question is who among us will acknowledge it? A Puritan preacher named Thomas Manton said of the human penchant for envy and jealousy, “We are born with this Adamic sin. We drink it in with our mother’s milk.” It is that deeply a part of us.
Such sinful seeds keep us from rejoicing in the blessings and accomplishments of others’ ministries or works. Their effect is to erect powerful walls between us and our brothers and sisters: “Wrath is cruel and anger a torrent, but who is able to stand before jealousy?” (Proverbs 27:4, NKJV). James adds to this, “If you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth” (James 3:14). In plain terms, this sin of jealousy and envy is a bitter poison. If we hold onto it, it will not only cost us spiritual authority but open us to demonic activity.
King Saul provides the clearest example of this in all of scripture. In 1 Samuel, we find David returning from a battle in which he slaughtered the Philistines. As he and King Saul rode into Jerusalem, the women of Israel came to celebrate David’s victories, dancing and singing, “Saul has slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands” (1 Samuel 18:7).
Saul was wounded by this joyous celebration, thinking to himself, “They have ascribed to David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed only thousands. Now what more can he have but the kingdom?” (1 Samuel 18:8). Immediately, Saul was consumed by a spirit of jealousy and envy. In the very next verse, we read of the deadly effect it had on him. “Saul eyed [envied] David from that day forward” (1 Samuel 18:9). Tragically, after this, “Saul became David’s enemy continually” (1 Samuel 18:29).
What happened the next day ought to fill us all with holy fear: “Now Saul was afraid of David, because the Lord was with him, but had departed from Saul” (1 Samuel 18:12). Saul had been absolutely deluded by his jealousy. He could not humble himself before the Lord in repentance. Had he recognized his own envy and plucked it from his heart, God would have heaped honors on his anointed servant. Christ explained this truth of God’s kingdom to his followers, saying, “For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted” (Luke 14:11). AMEN
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 02-08-22, 15:25   #1211
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

A Seat for You in Heaven



The parable of the prodigal provides a powerful illustration of the acceptance that comes when we’re given a heavenly position in Christ. You know the story. A young man took his inheritance from his father and squandered it on sinful living. Once the son had became completely bankrupt morally, emotionally and physically, he thought of his father. He was convinced he’d lost all favor with him.
Scripture tells us that this broken young man was full of grief over his sin and cried out, “I’m unworthy. I’ve sinned against heaven.” This represents those who come to repentance through godly sorrow.
The prodigal told himself, “I will arise and go to my father” (Luke 15:18). He was exercising his blessing of access. Are you getting the picture? This young man turned from his sin, left the world behind and accessed the open door his father had promised him. He was walking in repentance.
What happened to the Prodigal Son? “When he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him” (Luke 15:20). What a beautiful scene! The sinful son was forgiven, embraced and loved by his father with no wrath or condemnation whatsoever. When he received his father’s kiss, he knew he was accepted.
A great blessing becomes ours when we’re made to sit in heavenly places. What is this blessing? It’s the privilege of acceptance, as Paul wrote, “He made us accepted in the beloved [Christ]” (Ephesians 1:6, NKJV). The Greek word for “accepted” means highly favored. That’s different from the English usage, which can be interpreted to mean “received as adequate.” This signifies something that can be endured with an attitude of “I can live with it.”
That’s not the case with Paul’s use of the word. His use of “accepted” translates as, “God has highly favored us because of our place in Christ.” Because God accepted Christ’s sacrifice, he now sees only one corporate man: Christ and those who are bound to him by faith. Our flesh has died in God’s eyes. How? Jesus did away with our old nature at the Cross. Now when God looks at us, he sees only Christ. In turn, we need to learn to see ourselves as God does. That means not focusing solely on our sins and weaknesses but on the victory that Christ won for us.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 04-08-22, 01:28   #1212
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

In Psalm 86, we find a prayer that some Bible scholars say David often prayed, though he did not write it. The prayer has four parts, found in verses 11 and 12: "Teach me your way, O LORD, that I may walk in your truth; unite my heart to fear your name. I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart, and I will glorify your name forever." These verses communicate:
  1. A Teachable Heart -- We want to learn from the Master as a child of God. I encourage you to begin daily praying this portion of David's prayer: "Teach me your way, O LORD, that I may walk in your truth" (Psalm 86:11a). In so doing, you are acknowledging your desire for God to not only instruct your spiritual walk but also to lead you daily in all areas of your life as you walk in truth.
  2. A United Heart -- As a child of God, we need our hearts united with what matters to God. The word "fear" in Psalm 86:11b refers to our honor of God. We can praise Him by living out each moment of our lives for Him.
  3. A Thankful Heart -- As a child of God, we should be thankful for everything. The outcome of David's heart being united with God would be to give Him praise and thanks.
Heavenly Father, I praise you that you are the Master Teacher. I invite you to instruct us in Your way. May we be people who are teachable, united, and thankful. God, I ask that You bring healing and resolution to those battling afflictions. Lord, increase our awareness as believers that you have provided us the truth in Your Word. May we seek instruction from the Bible daily. May our love for You grow and may our hearts be united with You. Lord, thank you for this prayer of David, and may it be a reminder that biblical discipleship is a lifelong journey of learning and allowing the Holy Spirit to transform us into the likeness of Christ. In Jesus' name, Amen.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 04-08-22, 18:25   #1213
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Chosen to Bear Fruit



Jesus said, “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you” (John 15:16, NKJV). Many sincere Christians think bearing fruit means simply to bring souls to Christ. Bearing fruit, though, means something much larger even than soulwinning.
The fruit Jesus is talking about is Christ-likeness. Simply put, bearing fruit means reflecting the likeness of Jesus. The phrase “much fruit” means “the ever-increasing likeness of Christ.” Growing more and more into Jesus’ likeness is our core purpose in life. It has to be central to all our activities, our lifestyle, our relationships. Indeed, all our gifts, callings, work, ministry and witness must flow out of this core purpose.
If I am not Christlike at heart, if I’m not becoming noticeably more like him, I have missed God’s purpose in my life.
God’s purpose for me can’t be fulfilled by what I do for Christ. It can’t be measured by anything I achieve, even if I heal the sick or cast out demons. No, God’s purpose is fulfilled in me only by what I am becoming in him. Christlikeness isn’t about what I do for the Lord but rather how I’m being transformed into his likeness.
Go into a Christian bookstore and read the titles on the shelves. Most are self-help books on how to overcome loneliness, survive depression, find fulfillment. Why is this? It’s because we have it all wrong. We aren’t called to be successes and be free of all trouble. No, we are missing the one calling that’s meant to be central to our lives, to become fruitful in the likeness of Christ.
Jesus was totally given to the Father. He stated, “I don’t do or say anything except what my Father tells me.”
Does your desire to bear “much fruit” spring forth from wanting to become more like Christ? We fulfill our life’s purpose only as we begin to love others like Christ has loved us. “As the Father loved me, I also have loved you; abide in my love” (John 15:9). His command is clear and simple: “Give to others the unconditional love I have shown you.” We grow more Christlike as our love for others increases. Bearing fruit comes down to how we treat people.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 07-08-22, 23:57   #1214
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Start at the 30 minute mark.....and enjoy this service. You will be blessed.

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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 11-08-22, 01:34   #1215
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

MESSAGE:

"This is the time that was written about thousands of years ago. The stage is now being set for the culmination of all things.


The wicked will now become more wicked....
The righteous will become more holy.....
The earth will groan from the spilled blood of MY saints.
(Psalms 79:10; Revelation 6:9)



A time is coming where they all call out to ME, LORD, LORD!
For every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that I am the SON OF GOD....the SAVIOR for all those who call out to ME in faith! (Philippians 2:9-11)


The governments are now one, though they pretend not to be. They put on a facade to fool and mislead the people. This is the New World Order that has come, and many are shocked at its emergence. However, this was also prophesied in MY WORD.
(Daniel 7:23)



Just like in the days of Babylon, so shall it be again. Man trying to become GOD, and reach HIM through their own attempts, and ghastly deeds. With the help of My arch enemy, the devil, they are given the outlines of how to set up this New World, so that it will be WITHOUT GOD.


They think that they will succeed, and that they are all powerful. But I laugh (Psalms 2:4) at their feeble attempts to play GOD, for they will fumble, fall, and, unless they repent, will be thrown into UTTER DARKNESS where they will wail and gnash their teeth.(Matthew 8:12)


This New World will only last for a short while, for it I did not come to stop them, there would be nothing left.


Their main goal is two fold:
1) To kill, steal and destroy (John 10:10)
2) To take out those who call themselves by MY NAME


They to do not realize that they are only pawns in a much bigger picture. For nothing happens without MY knowing, and without MY permission. I only hold all the KEYS to LIFE (and death) , not the devil! (Revelation 1:18)


CANCER:
The evil that is taking over the world is like an advanced cancer that is spreading.


Only I can remove this growth.
Only I can heal the land.
Only I can surgically remove it.


But most do not see Me as the answer. They only see the elections of man to be the answer to the cancer that is now consuming the world.


They do not look to the root cause, but only to a temporary solution. Oh, that they would call out to ME for the answer....for I would provide the remedy!


OH FOOLISH MAN! When will you ever learn? My heart grieves at your blindness, for truly you cannot see! For there is only one answer.....one hope!


I am that hope...
Not man....
Not governments...
Not elections!


Most think that it is all about the ba llot box, and who gets vot ed into office. This is where their hopes lie.


WHOA, I tell you! This will be your downfall because you did not trust in GOD for your deliverance! You did not call out, but instead but your hopes in a fallen system that is corrupt and deceptive.


It will only go from bad to worse quickly, if your eyes to not open to the truth of the GRAVE SITUATION that you are in!


WAKE UP AMERICA!! You have believed in a lie, and have worshiped the seen for the unseen. It is only the CREATOR of life that has the POWER to rescue the sons of men.


Only those who believe (in faith), will be able to discern the times that have become so desperate. For many have been given over to a depraved mind, therefore the evil increases.


I call MY people to humble themselves and pray for deliverance, for only I can save!


If you continue to put your faith in man, then comes the same punishment as the unrighteous.


Call out to ME, and live! I will be your salvation. Do not trust in man’s institutions, because they have become corrupt and evil.


There is only ONE WAY out of the mess that America and the world is in.....


TO REPENT and SEEK THE LORD with all your heart, soul and mind.


I come soon and am ready to call MY own home to be with ME! The time is late, as MIDNIGHT approaches. Time is speeding up for the sake of MY elect!


Soon the end will become a glorious beginning for those who love truth and righteousness!


Seek the days that will bring rejoicing and peace....because the come soon!


See ME and let ME hide you in MY presence!


I call out to those who have ears to hear....


Your SAVIOR,
JESUS"


PSALMS 2:1-6:
"Why are the nations so angry?
Why do they waste their time with futile plans?

The kings of the earth prepare for battle;
the rulers plot together
against the Lord
and against his anointed one.


“Let us break their chains,” they cry,
“and free ourselves from slavery to God.”


But the one who rules in heaven laughs.
The Lord scoffs at them.


Then in anger he rebukes them,
terrifying them with his fierce fury.

For the Lord declares, “I have placed my chosen king on the throne
in Jerusalem, on my holy mountain.”
__________________
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 15-08-22, 19:13   #1216
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

A Table before My Enemies



We're in a season right now where, as bad things are happening in our country, there is an opportunity for the church to move.
Believers need to awaken from the common, nominal, social-club version of Christianity. Those who are oftentimes coming to church for the social life or the feel-good messages are realizing that they don’t have answers for the problems plaguing our culture now. The hyper-faith and prosperity messages that come on Sunday mornings aren't cutting it anymore. People are realizing, “Okay, you promised me everything's going to be a blessing, and this is the year of favor and prosperity. But I don’t see those in my life. In fact, I’m suffering right now.”
People are hungry for something deeper. It’s very likely that the hand of God is involved in this. There's great potential here for the church to be revived and come into a season of spiritual awakening. I’m not just talking about more souls won for Christ, although I do believe that will be the case; I’m talking about more depth in existing believers as well.
In the season right now, when people are looking for answers, I'm afraid the answers often end up being “Don't fear” or “You're going to be okay” or “God's with you.” What if, instead, the church began to go a little deeper? What if believers grew mature enough to ask in their suffering, “Who do I believe God is? Who does the Bible say God is? What does that mean for my season of suffering?”
There's a purpose for the valley of the shadow of death. There's a purpose for the table being set before me in the presence of my enemies. We didn't set that table; God set it. So there's a purpose for our enemies. There's a purpose for suffering.
This is when we discover the significance in Paul’s words, “More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us” (Romans 5:3-5, ESV). Once we understand this and live it out, then the church can rise up in strength as a light to the nations.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 18-08-22, 23:47   #1217
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

The Power of Forgiveness



Forgiveness is a way of life, meant to bring us into every blessing in Christ. “I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven…” (Matthew 5:44-45, NKJV).
Forgiveness isn’t a matter of picking or choosing whom we would forgive. We can’t say, “You’ve hurt me too much, so I’m not forgiving you.” Christ tells us, “For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same?” (Matthew 5:46).
It doesn’t matter whom our grudge might be against. If we hold onto it, it will lead to bitterness that poisons every aspect of our lives. Unforgiveness brings on spiritual famine, weakness and a loss of faith, afflicting not just us but everyone in our circle.
Over the past fifty years of my ministry, I have seen terrible devastation in the lives of those who withheld forgiveness. I have also seen the glorious power of a forgiving spirit. Forgiveness transforms lives. It fills our cup of spiritual blessing to the brim with abundant peace, joy and rest in the Holy Ghost. Jesus’ teaching on this subject is very specific. If you want to move in this wonderful realm of blessing, heed and embrace his words. “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses” (Matthew 6:14-15).
Make no mistake. God isn’t making a bargain with us here. He is not saying, “Because you’ve forgiven others, I will forgive you.” We can never earn God’s forgiveness. Only the shed blood of Christ merits forgiveness of sin.
Christ is saying here, “Full confession of sin requires that you forgive others. If you hold on to any unforgiveness, you haven’t confessed all your sins. True repentance means confessing and forsaking every grudge, crucifying every trace of bitterness toward others. Anything less isn’t repentance.”
This goes hand in hand with his Beatitude, “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy” (Matthew 5:7). Forgive others, so you can move into the blessings and joy of sonship. When you forgive, you’re revealing the Father’s nature to the world.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 19-08-22, 16:49   #1218
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Four Expectations of God



God is a promise-maker and promise-keeper, and he has spoken to my heart about four places where God’s people should trust him. These expectations are based on promises God has made to us.
  • Expect to be rewarded as you diligently seek the Lord. “[God] is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him” (Hebrews 11:6, NKJV).
You can ask in faith for a token from God to encourage and rekindle your confidence. God is always on time, and he knows you need a ray of hope and good news in your testing time. Expect him to keep his promise to reward you now when you are in greatest need. God cannot lie. He said he rewards those who diligently seek him. Seek him daily, and believe that this year will be your year of great spiritual blessing.
  • Expect to see evidence of a progressive miracle in your life. “With God all things are possible” (Mark 10:27).
I believe in both instantaneous and progressive miracles. Progressive miracles start in unseen, quiet ways and unfold little by little, one small mercy at a time. Expect to see God working in mysterious ways, unseen to the human eye.
  • Expect to enter into God’s promised place of rest. “There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. …Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest” (Hebrews 4:9,11).
In the last few years, we have seen an outpouring of incredible calamities, problems and trials. In the midst of this, the Lord desires that you believe him to bring you into his promised rest. God never intended that his children live in fear and despair. We need a reckless faith and trust in God in the face of fear, trouble and death itself.
  • Expect the Holy Spirit to be always in his temple. “Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit?” (1 Corinthians 6:19).
The Holy Spirit abides in the heart of the believer. He is omnipresent throughout the world. I face each day acknowledging that he is here in his temple to comfort, guide and reveal to me the glory of Jesus Christ. He desires that you expect him to make his presence manifest to you. He wants to bring you into unshakable faith, just as he did his disciples.
Believe these promises! Lay hold of these expectations, and you will see God do marvelous things.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 23-08-22, 14:14   #1219
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The Glory of Jesus Christ



Jesus prayed for his disciples, “That that they all may be one, as you, Father, are in me, and I in you; that they also may be one in us… And the glory which you gave me I have given them, that they may be one just as we are one: I in them, and you in me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that you have sent me, and have loved them as you have loved me” (John 17:21-23, NKJV).
Jesus said, in essence, “The glory that you gave me, Father, I have given to them.” What is this glory that was given to Christ, and how do our lives reveal that glory? It is not some aura or emotion; it is unimpeded access to the heavenly Father. What an amazing thought!
Jesus made it easy for us to access through the cross to the Father. “He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near. For through him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father” (Ephesians 2:17-18). By faith, we’ve come into a place of unimpeded access to God. We’re not like Esther in the Old Testament. She had to wait for a sign from the king before she could approach the throne. Only after he held out his scepter was Esther approved to come forward.
By contrast, you and I are already in the throne room. We have the right and privilege of speaking to the King at any time. Indeed, we’re invited to make any request of him. “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16).
Christ said, “I can do nothing on my own. I do only what the Father tells me and shows me” (see John 5:19). Today we have been given the same degree of access to the Father that Christ had. You may say, “Wait a minute. I have the same access to the Father that Jesus did?”
Make no mistake. Like Jesus, we’re to pray often and fervently, waiting on the Lord. In response, the Holy Spirit reveals to us the mind and will of the Father. AMEN
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 25-08-22, 19:40   #1220
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Lord, Your Servant Is Listening



Do you know it is possible to walk before the Lord with a perfect heart? If you are hungering for Jesus, you may already be desiring and earnestly trying to obey this command of the Lord. I want to encourage you that it is possible, or God would not have given us such a call. Having a perfect heart has been part of the life of faith from the time God told Abraham, “I am Almighty God; walk before me and be blameless” (Genesis 17:1, NKJV).
To come to grips with the idea of perfection, we first must understand that perfection does not mean a sinless, flawless existence. No, perfection in the Lord’s eyes means something entirely different. It means maturity and completeness.
The Hebrew and Greek meanings of “perfection” include “uprightness, having neither spot nor blemish, being totally obedient.” It means to finish what has been started, to make a complete performance. John Wesley called this concept of perfection “constant obedience.” A perfect heart is a responsive heart, one that answers the Lord’s whisperings and warnings quickly and totally. Such a heart says at all times, “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening. Show me the path, and I will walk in it.”
The perfect heart cries out with David, “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my anxieties; and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139:23-24).
The perfect heart wants the Holy Spirit to come and search out the innermost man, to shine into all hidden parts, to expose and dig out all that is unlike Christ. Those who hide a secret sin, however, do not want to be searched or convicted.
The Lord’s heart-searching are not vindictive but redemptive. His purpose is not to catch us in sin or condemn us but rather to prepare us to come into his holy presence as clean, pure vessels. “Who may stand in his holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart…He shall receive blessing from the Lord” (Psalm 24:3-5). The perfect heart yearns for more than security or a covering for sin. It seeks to be in God’s presence always and dwell in communion. This means talking with the Lord, sharing sweet fellowship with him, seeking his face and knowing his presence.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 26-08-22, 22:34   #1221
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Surrendering Our Plans to God



“Then Jesus lifted up his eyes, and seeing a great multitude coming toward him, he said to Philip, ‘Where shall we buy bread, that these may eat?’ But this he said to test him, for he himself knew what he would do” (John 6:5-6, NKJV). Jesus took Philip aside and said, “Philip, there are thousands of people here. They are all hungry. Where are we going to buy enough bread to feed them? What do you think we should do?”
How incredibly loving of Christ! Jesus knew all along what he was going to do, yet the Lord was trying to teach Philip something, and the lesson he was imparting to him applies to each of us today. Think about it. How many in Christ’s body sit up half the night trying to figure out their problems? We think, “Maybe this will work. No, no… Maybe that will solve it. No…”
Philip and the apostles didn’t have just a bread problem. They had a bakery problem…and a money problem…and a distribution problem…and a transportation problem…and a time problem. Add it all up, and they had problems they couldn’t even imagine. Their situation was absolutely impossible.
Jesus knew all along exactly what he going to do. He had a plan, and the same is true of your troubles and difficulties today. There is a problem, but Jesus knows your whole situation. He comes to you, asking, “What are we going to do about this?”
The correct answer from Philip would have been, “Jesus, you are God. Nothing is impossible with you. I’m giving this problem over to you. It’s no longer mine but yours.”
God’s holy Word assures us, “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10). Rest in that promise, and then cry out in full faith, “Lord, you are the miracle worker, and I’m going to surrender all my doubts and fears to you. I entrust this entire situation and my whole life into your care. I know you won’t allow me to faint. In fact, you already know what you’re going to do about my problem. I trust in your power.”
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 28-08-22, 14:34   #1222
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

God’s School of Pop Quizzes



In many ways, the disciples who were with Jesus seemed to experience crazy situations without warning. In one case, they went out in a boat and a huge storm hit them. “They went and woke him [Jesus], saying, ‘Save us, Lord; we are perishing.’ And he said to them, ‘Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?’ Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. And the men marveled, saying, ‘What sort of man is this, that even winds and sea obey him?’” (Matthew 8:25-27, ESV). It almost seems as if this came up suddenly like a test for them.
How many of us experienced pop quizzes in school? I hated pop quizzes when I was growing up. I was one of those guys who would study for the midterm and the final. Pop quizzes, though, meant that I constantly needed to keep up and know what was happening.
Think about it. Those quizzes weren’t revelations about the teacher or the material; they were revelations about us. If we were keeping up with what we were being taught in class and knew the material, those quizzes showed it. If we weren’t, they showed that too.
Christianity doesn't work on a midterm and final test basis. It works on pop quizzes that abruptly show up and reveal where we are in our relationship with God. Wild stuff happens, and many Christians today aren’t ready for it any more than the disciples were prepared for that storm. Here comes the revelation. Jesus told his disciples that their poor reaction wasn’t a fear issue; it was a faith issue.
The wind and the waves, the things causing your fear, aren’t the problem. When you have big waves and little faith, you're going to have a fear problem. If you have big waves and big faith, you’ll rest in knowing God's got this. That's where God wants to meet us and help us. So when you’re in a turbulent moment, embrace the pop quiz life. Ask God to increase the faith in your heart. That's what God is asking us to do. Trust him, and grow in your trust of him.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 29-08-22, 18:05   #1223
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

The Big Picture of God’s Work



A very popular verse for many Christians is “We know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28, ESV). The word in there that I really noticed is ‘together’ because if we think that all things in our lives will work out for our own good, we're going to get discouraged and disappointed.
However, the verse says, “All things works together…” That word ‘together’ is powerful because troubling events happen, and things don’t look good, but those trials come together with what God's doing. He’s covering our situation, redeeming and transforming it. When you look at the big picture and take in everything in our lives and other people’s lives, God always makes suffering work out for good.
Listen to this story from a young pastor. He wrote, “The past 12 years have been an extended season of trials and sorrow for me and my family. I never imagined that my college years would include caring for my ailing mother and sitting at her bedside as God took her home. I never imagined my wife and I would celebrate our first anniversary in the hospital at the bedside of our son who was born prematurely with Down Syndrome and a complex heart disease.
“I never imagined caring for a son who would go through over 20 surgeries, including five open-heart procedures. I never imagined I could feel so much sorrow and pain as a father watching my precious son struggle to be around people, struggle to communicate, eat, play, sleep, process the world around him. I never imagined that life as a husband and father would so constantly bring me to the end of my strength. I never imagined that the Lord would bring so many tears into my life."
Then he went on to say, “Yet I also never imagined that life could be this beautiful, full of joy, blessed and grace-lavished. My refuge and salvation are sure (see Psalms 18:2). For mine is the Father of mercies and the God of all comfort (see 2 Corinthians 1:3). God is truly faithful.”
I want to encourage you to have more of a hunger for the Word of God (The Bible) in the midst of your suffering. Know that God’s plans are all working for his glory and our good, even if we can’t see him moving right now.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 02-09-22, 13:52   #1224
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Our Guard against Neglect



When I asked the Holy Spirit to show me how to guard against neglect, he led me to consider Peter’s drifting and his eventual renewal. This man denied Christ, even cursing and telling his accuser, “I don’t know him.”
What had happened? What had brought Peter to that point? It was pride, the result of self-righteous boasting. This disciple had said to himself and others, “I could never grow cold in my love for Jesus. I’ve reached a place in my faith where I don’t have to be warned. Others may drift, but I will die for my Lord.”
However, Peter forsook his calling after the crucifixion and returned to his old career, telling the others, “I’m going fishing.” What he really was saying was “I can’t handle this. I’d thought that I couldn’t fail, but nobody has ever failed God worse than I did. I just can’t face the struggle anymore.”
By that point, Peter had repented of his denial of Jesus. He had returned to the other disciples and prayed with them, but he was still a frayed man inside.
As Jesus waited for the disciples to return to shore, an issue remained unsettled in Peter’s life. It wasn’t enough that Peter was secure in his salvation. It wasn’t enough that he would fast and pray as any devoted believer would do. No, the issue that Christ wanted to address in Peter’s life was neglect in another form.
As they sat around the fire on shore, eating and fellowshipping, Jesus asked Peter three times, “Do you love me?” Each time Peter answered, “Yes, Lord, you know I do,” and Christ responded in turn, “Feed my sheep.” Note that Jesus didn’t remind him to watch and pray or to be diligent in reading God’s Word. Christ presumed those things had already been well taught. No, the instruction he gave Peter was “Feed my sheep.”
I believe that in that simple phrase, Jesus was instructing Peter on how to guard against neglect. He was saying, in essence, “I want you to forget about your failure and that you drifted from me. You’ve come back to me now, and I’ve forgiven and restored you. So it’s time to get your focus off of your doubts, failures and problems. The way to do that is by not neglecting my people and to minister to their needs. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.”
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 04-09-22, 02:31   #1225
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Submitting Ourselves to God



In the days of the early church, some of the Greeks started complaining about how the Jewish believers weren’t helping Greek widows the same as their own. The apostles gathered and made arrangements for how the church would care for the widows. They clearly stated, though, “But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.’” (Acts 6:1-4, ESV). They knew an important truth that we need to grasp.
If I don't spend time with God, how will God use me? You don't have to have elaborate notes or studies; you just have to be with God. There is no instant anointing.
If we want to see God move today, we need to say to him, “We want to build your church, your way, through your means. Your power is for your glory. It's your church.” Why don't we take our hands off our churches? We should have the courage to say, “Jesus, they belong to you. You build the church. Just show me what the tools are I should use and what goal I should have.”
Father God, we give you our churches today. We give you our ministries and work. We humble ourselves as we read in your word, which says, ‘humble yourselves under the presence of God, and he will exalt you.’ He will lift you. Forgive us for building our church instead of yours. Forgive us for building a church with different models and goals than what you laid out in your Word. Forgive us for ignoring your Word. Forgive us for following the spirit of this world rather than the Spirit of Christ. Forgive us for using fleshly methods instead of those that are tried and true through the centuries.
God, we want to be Christians who give you honor and glory by the way we live. It's getting darker around us, but your light is still shining brightest of all. In this darkness, God, bring out a remnant of people who really know and love you. Use us, whether it's for a month or a year. We don't know when you're coming; but God, from now to the finish line, let abundant grace be upon us all. We pray it in Jesus name. Amen.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 07-09-22, 22:10   #1226
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The Reason for Temptation



Temptation is an invitation or an enticement to commit an immoral act. Right now, Satan is raging over the earth as a roaring lion trying to devour Christians through powerful enticements toward immorality. No one is immune. In fact, the closer you get to God, the more Satan will desire to sift you.
Sinners cannot be tempted. Rain cannot touch a body already under water. Sinners are already drowned in perdition; and as children of Satan, they do as he dictates. They do not have to be tempted or enticed because they are already immoral. As slaves, they are not free to choose. They simply go from dead to twice dead “to being plucked up by the roots.” Sinners can be teased by the devil but not tempted. Satan teases his own children into deeper and darker pits of immorality, but they are already dead in their trespasses and cannot fight the battles of the living. That’s why our Lord tells us to rejoice when we come against diverse temptations. We are experiencing something unique only to maturing Christians.
For believers, temptation is “training under combat conditions.” God limits it to the point of being “bearable.” He wants combat-seasoned warriors who can testify, “I was under fire. I’ve been in the battle. The enemy was all around me, shooting at me, trying to kill me, but God showed me how to take it and not be afraid. I have experience, so the next time I’ll not fear.”
Temptation is not a sign of weakness or a leaning toward the world. Rather, it is a graduation, a sign that God trusts us. The Spirit led Jesus into the arena of temptation in the wilderness. Actually, God was saying to Jesus, “Son, I have given you the Spirit without measure. I have confirmed you before the world. Now I am going to permit Satan to throw every device he has at you that you may go forth preaching that Satan is defeated, that he cannot snatch anyone I give to you out of our hand.”
That is why Christians are tempted today. Temptation is allowed in the saintliest of lives to teach us the limitation of Satan, to expose his weakness and to reveal Satan as a scarecrow.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 09-09-22, 00:17   #1227
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How to Win Over Temptation



Power to not yield to temptation does not come from stuffing our minds with scripture verses, making vows, spending hours in prayer, fasting or even giving ourselves over to a great spiritual cause. These things are all commendable and normal for Christian growth, but that is not where our victory lies.
The simple secret of bearing up under any temptation is to break the fear of Satan’s power. Fear is the only power over man Satan has. God does not give us the spirit of fear, but man is afraid of the devil, frightened of demons. We are afraid of failure, afraid our appetites and habits can’t be altered, that they will erupt and control our lives.
Man is afraid that he can’t quit his sin. He credits Satan with power he doesn’t have. Man cries out, “I’m hooked and can’t stop. I’m spellbound and in the devil’s power. The devil makes me do it!”
Fear is a torment. As long as you are afraid of the devil, you can never break the power of temptation. Satan thrives on fear, and Christians who are afraid of the devil have little or no power to resist. It’s all based on the lie that Satan has power to break down Christians under pressure. Not so! Jesus came to destroy all the power of the devil over blood-washed children of God. I have often wondered why God allows spiritual people to be so tempted. Scripture says, “God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it” (1 Corinthians 10:13, NKJV). Why doesn’t God remove all temptations instead?
The answer is simple. Once you learn how powerless Satan is, that he can’t make you do anything, that God has all power to keep you from falling—from then on, you can “bear up” under anything Satan throws at you. You can go through it without fearing you will fall.
We are not delivered from temptation but from the fear of the devil to make us yield to it. We will keep on being tempted until we come to the place of “rest” in our faith. That rest is the unshakeable confidence that God has defeated Satan, that Satan has no right or claim on us and that we will come forth as gold tried in the fire.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 12-09-22, 19:06   #1228
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Living with Holy Dissatisfaction



Hopelessness is borne out of an incorrect view of God, and that’s where Satan comes to kill and destroy our view of God being good and for us. God is powerful, available and present to us at all times; he is with us in the storm when the storms don’t cease.
As we become a spiritual man or woman of God, the person who draws near to Jesus in complete trust, we’re going to face a battle. There are going to be satanic distractions to pull us away from intimacy with Jesus. Our ‘drug’ of choice or our comfort of choice can be a plethora of things. It's usually ‘self’ things like “I want to build my career” or “I want to build my reputation” or “I want comfort.”
Living for yourself feels good temporarily, but it's actually miserable in the long run. That's where some forms of depression come from; it’s where most kinds of addictions spring from. This is the source of almost anything that robs us of the joy of our family life with Jesus.
There's an arrow from the Holy Spirit that penetrates all those walls of self-interest and building up of self. It breaks through everything and says, “That's not what your heart was built for. You weren't built for yourself; you were built for others; you were built for God. You were built for his kingdom.” No one will be truly happy until they come to that place of realizing, “I’m not meant to live for myself.”
Even people who are already in a relationship with Jesus Christ will find within themselves a God-given longing, even a jealousy, that says, “God, I'm not satisfied with making money. I'm not satisfied with a good career. I'm not satisfied exclusively with being in good health. I want more.” What we’re craving is that deeper relationship with Jesus. This is a desire we should experience because, as Paul wrote, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20, ESV).
We are called to embrace the reality that we are created to seek God’s glory in whatever we do. This restless urge in us should drive us to search out ways to honor and worship God. AMEN
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 15-09-22, 01:00   #1229
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Better than Pentecost



John the Baptist never made it to Pentecost. He saw none of the cloven tongues of fire, nor did he hear the mighty rushing wind. He did not see Jerusalem shaken and multitudes converted, but John still said his joy was fulfilled! He had heard something better than the rushing wind, better than good reports, better than the sounds of a joyful bride. He had heard the Savior’s voice.
“He who has the bride is the bridegroom; but the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice. Therefore this joy of mine is fulfilled” (John 3:29, NKJV).
John tasted the greatest joy a follower of Jesus can know. He said, “I stood still, and I heard him talk to me. His voice made my heart leap. He talked to me personally. I listened to my Lord, and that’s my joy: just hearing his voice.” John could say, “Oh yes, I loved him. I worshipped at his feet and told him how unworthy I was. My joy is not in what I said to him; my joy is in what he spoke to me! I rejoice in the sound of that voice.”
Some people teach that the Lord no longer speaks to men except through the revealed Word. They cannot believe men can be directed and blessed by hearing the Spirit’s voice today. Scripture declares, “God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by his Son, whom he has appointed heir of all things, through whom also he made the worlds” (Hebrews 1:1-2), and “Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says, ‘Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts” (Hebrews 3:7-8).
Jesus said, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me” (John 10:27). Nowadays we are afraid of all the abuses, afraid we will be led to revelations contrary to the Word of God. All the abuses are not God’s fault. Every fake vision, false prophecy or false leading is a direct result of man’s own pride and self-will. Men abuse every gift of God. Nevertheless, God still speaks directly to the hearts of those willing to hear.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 16-09-22, 15:54   #1230
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Hearing His Voice Today



Millions have been converted because one man waited to hear the voice of God. Peter allowed the Savior's voice to come to him. "Peter went up upon the housetop to pray…and a voice came to him” (Acts 10:9, 13, NKJV).
The entire Gentile race was welcomed into the kingdom, along with the house of Cornelius, because a man obeyed a voice. We are living in the same New Testament times as Paul and Peter, and we too must allow his voice to come to us. Instead of waiting for his voice to come to us, though, we run to counselors and Christian psychologists, read books and listen to tapes. We seek a clear word of direction for our lives and want pastors to tell us what is right and wrong. We desire a leader to follow, a diagram for the future.
Few know how to go to the Lord and hear his voice. The writers of scripture warn us, though, saying, “See that you do not refuse him who speaks. For if they did not escape who refused him who spoke on earth, much more shall we not escape if we turn away from him who speaks from heaven, whose voice then shook the earth; but now he has promised, saying, ‘Yet once more I shake not only the earth, but also heaven.’” (Hebrews 12:25-26).
God has promised, “Once again my voice will be heard. Those who hear will shake the earth, and heaven and earth will be moved. By the hearing of my voice, whatsoever is loosed on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”
To the last church, the Laodicean church, the Lord cries, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with me” (Revelation 3:20).
Our Savior is telling us, “I’m asking to be heard. Open up. Let me into your secret closet. Let me talk with you, and you talk with me. Let's commune. That's how I will keep you from the hour of temptation that is coming on all the world.”
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 17-09-22, 23:47   #1231
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Standing Out in a Pagan Culture



It’s not your job to qualify yourself for heaven. Jesus delivered us from the power of darkness at the cross(If we believe). He has invited us to an inheritance of the saints and the light.
All the same, it can be difficult to walk with God in the culture that surrounds us. Imagine what the world was like 2,000 years before Christ; that was where Abraham lived. He had no Bible to read; he had no church to attend. Nevertheless, he was called the father of faith, and the Apostle Paul wrote, “Therefore he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you, does he do it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?— just as Abraham ‘believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.’ Therefore know that only those who are of faith are sons of Abraham” (Galatians 3:5-7, ESV).
We are in a culture where Christians are no longer the majority anymore. If you think we live in a Christian nation, I’m sorry to break it to you but that day has passed. Our culture is actively going against the God of heaven.
Here’s the thing; God did not just save you to be a good person in the world. He called you to be a man and woman of faith. He’s called you to a revelation of who he is. When the Lord of heaven and earth touches our lives, that changes us from a ‘good Christian’ into someone who has an impact on the world around us. God wants to awaken our souls!
No doubt this was in Paul’s heart for believers when he wrote, “And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy” (Colossians 1:9-11, ESV).
We are the offspring of Abraham because Abraham is the father of faith. We have been saved by grace which is God’s unmerited favor. Our uncertain future belongs to God whom we can trust. God has qualified us by his righteousness, and that should transform our hearts, minds and lives.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 19-09-22, 22:15   #1232
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

The Megaphone to a Suffering World



I've never met somebody who is content their whole life. The ‘happy pagan,’ people who claim to be entirely satisfied without God or religion, tend to think, “Things are working well in my life, so I’m happy.” The problem is that this is a superficial happiness because it’s based entirely on circumstances. This kind of happiness will never last long and can’t endure any kind of suffering.
As for believers, we will always get this holy dissatisfaction, if we’re actively seeking the Lord. I believe that this is a gift from the Holy Spirit. My grandfather, who was a pastor and minister, called this the ‘Holy Ghost miserables.’ He would actually pray for his family members and his children, if they got to the place of being so content in life that they felt like they didn’t need God, that they would get miserable because that tends to be when we look for God. Now some people say, “Well then, isn't God just a crutch? Isn't he just for people who are weak and hurting?”
Everybody's weak and hurting. Refusing to face that fact is the epitome of arrogance. Everyone is weak in some area. Everyone has gone through pain at some point in their life. Everyone has endured sorrow over a loss.
There are people listening right now who are facing the most difficult season of their life, and they may be asking, “Oh, God, why? Why am I going through this? Am I cursed? Why aren't I being blessed like others?” Well, maybe there's a blessing in disguise in that pain. C. S. Lewis wrote, “Pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”
God calls to us through our pains, saying, “Come deeper into your knowledge of me. Draw closer to me. Learn to depend on me entirely.” In times of pain and difficulty, I find myself becoming hungry for more of Jesus. One of the things I'm also learning through faithfully seeking God in the midst of suffering is how to continue wanting God when things are going well too. I still want to know him more when everything seems to be falling in place. That’s where we truly find joy unspeakable.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 24-09-22, 14:16   #1233
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Comforts Behind, Servanthood Ahead



Immediately after the miraculous feeding of the 5,000, the Bible tells us that Jesus sent his disciples across the sea to Bethsaida. That evening a storm hit, and the disciples began to struggle against the fierce wind and waves. They were no doubt weary. Ahead of them are multitudes of people in need. Behind them are twelve baskets of leftover bread.
I see it almost as a test. Behind the disciples was a place of comfort where there was provision for each of them. Up ahead was poverty, sickness and human need. To press forward meant that they would have to stay in their wet clothes and walk with Jesus toward those in need.
How easy it would have been at that point for the disciples to say, “What a rough trial we’ve been through! Thank God it’s over now, and we all made it through the storm. Let’s just row back across the sea.” How easily they could have drafted their excuses and gone back to eat their bread. After all, they now had the incredible story to tell of how Jesus had brought them through their trial. They could have chosen to reverse their boat and concern themselves with their own safety and nourishment.
That’s not what the disciples did. Although they may still have had seaweed in their hair, they chose to move toward what Christ was doing. They entered into where the people were living, into people’s pain, sickness, struggles and religious confusion. They moved toward the people to meet them in their need.
Shouldn’t our seeking of God lead you and me toward human need? Shouldn’t it cause us to get out of the boat of our own trials and tribulations in order to invest in other needy people, despite our own needs? We are all called to walk where Jesus walks. Scripture says, “If you extend your soul to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted soul, then your light shall dawn in the darkness, and your darkness shall be as the noonday” (Isaiah 58:10, NKJV).
As we choose to reach out to human need, God promises that we will have light in our eyes even in the darkest hour.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 28-09-22, 14:24   #1234
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

What the Cross Teaches Us



Jesus is not in the drafting business; his army is all volunteer. You can be a believer without carrying a cross, but you cannot be a disciple.
I see many believers have opted for the good life with its prosperity, material gain, popularity and success. I’m sure that many of them will make it to heaven. They will have saved their skins, but they will not have learned Christ. Having rejected the suffering and sorrow of true discipleship, they will not have the capacity to know and enjoy him in eternity. This is opposed to all the saints who have entered into the fellowship of the suffering.
You will have to carry your cross until you learn to deny the one thing that constantly hinders God's work in our lives: self. Jesus said, “If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me” (Matthew 16:24, NKJV). We are misinterpreting this message if we emphasize the rejection of unlawful things. Jesus was not calling upon us to learn self-discipline before we take up our cross. It is far more severe than that.
Millions of professing Christians boast of their self-denial. They don't drink, smoke, curse or fornicate; they are examples of tremendous self-discipline. Not in a hundred years would they admit, though, that it was accomplished by anything other than their own willpower. In some ways, we are all like that. We experience spurts of holiness, accompanied by feelings of purity. Good works usually produce good feelings, but God will not allow us to think our good works and clean habits can save us. That is why we need a cross.
Don't take up your cross until you are ready to reject any thought of becoming a holy disciple as a result of your own effort. Before you take up your cross, be ready to face a moment of truth. Be ready to experience a crisis by which you will learn to deny your self-will, self-righteousness, self-sufficiency and self-authority.
You can rise up and follow Christ as a true disciple only when you can freely admit you can do nothing in your own strength. You cannot overcome sin through your own willpower. You cannot work things out by your own intellect. Your love for Jesus can put you on your knees, but your cross will put you on your face.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 29-09-22, 17:08   #1235
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

God Has Emergency Plans



No matter how unsettled the world becomes, God's people can relax and keep their joy flowing because our Lord has promised special protection when it is most needed.
Didn't God have an emergency plan for the children of Israel during the worldwide famine? He sent Joseph ahead to Egypt, promoted him to prime minister and filled the warehouses with enough grain to last out the famine. He then transported his people within walking distance of those storehouses and fed them to the full through the raging famine.
Didn't God have emergency plans for Elijah? While his nation reeled under the impact of an economic collapse and food was scarce because of severe famine as well as a wicked king who had a ransom on his head, God put his emergency plan for Elijah into effect. The Lord hid his prophet by a quiet brook and fed him by having ravens deliver his food. The survival plan also included a widow’s oil and flour that never ran out.
What about Noah? What a detailed survival plan God had for him and his family! An ark kept him and his family floating safely above all the death and destruction of a worldwide flood.
God actually sent angels to personally pull Lot and his daughters out of the doomed city of Sodom. God's hands were tied until Lot was safely out of the suburbs. It was more than a loss of his job, the collapse of an economy or the downfall of a government. It was total annihilation of his society, but Lot was delivered safely.
Paul proved God's emergency contingencies over and over. This apostle was shipwrecked, chased by thieves, imprisoned, accused of treason and plotted against by assassins. In every crisis, God had a contingency plan for deliverance. Only when God determined his race was over did the Lord call in his last contingency plan. He called this apostle to his resurrection.
We too have an emergency plan for survival, designed specifically for each believer. Let there be no question about it; God will see us through every crisis!
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 30-09-22, 19:45   #1236
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

The Blink Generation



Many Christians read the Bible regularly, believing it is God’s revealed Word for their lives. Over and over in the pages of scripture, they read about generations who heard the voice of God. They read of God speaking to his people with this phrase repeated time after time: “And God said…” However, many of these same Christians live as though God doesn’t speak to his people today.
An entire generation of believers has come to make decisions completely on their own without praying or consulting God’s Word. Many simply decide what they want to do, then they ask God to validate it. They move ahead forcefully, their only prayer being, “Lord, if this is not your will, then stop me.”
We are now living in a time referred to as the “blink generation.” People are making major decisions in the blink of an eye. A best-selling book has been written on this concept, titled Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking. The theory is “Trust your instincts. Blink-of-the-eye decisions prove to be the best.”
Think about all the hurried-up “blink language” we hear every day. “This is an offer of the century. You can make a bundle overnight, but you have only a short window of opportunity. Get on it now!” The driving spirit behind it all is “Don’t make a slow and thoughtful decision. Don’t get council from others who may tell you ‘no.’ Just do it!”
Such thinking has begun to infect the church, affecting the decisions made not just by “blink Christians” but by “blink ministers.” Scores of bewildered parishioners have written to us telling the same story. “Our pastor came back from a church-growth conference and immediately announced, ‘As of today, everything changes.’ He decided we would become one of the popular trend churches overnight. He didn’t even ask us to pray about it… We’re all confused.”
Just a few years ago, the watchword among Christians was “Did you pray about this matter? Are your brothers and sisters surrounding you in prayer? Have you received godly counsel?” Has this been your practice? In the past year, how many important decisions have you made where you honestly took the matter to God? The reason God wants full control of our lives is to save us from disasters, which is exactly where most of our “blink decisions” end up.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 03-10-22, 14:35   #1237
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

The Cure for Hopelessness



A lack of belief in who God says he is often results in a very unproductive life for believers. For example, God says that he's good, but we often still question, “Is he really good?” That question can lead to a lot of despair when we contemplate the future or the struggles in our lives.
We see this in the parable of the master who gave one servant five talents, another servant two talents and the third servant one talent. Two of those servants had hope; they believed that what their master had given them had purpose in their life and was ultimately for their benefit. As a result, they worked to see what they had doubled. When the master returned, he reviewed what they’d done and said to each one, “Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master” (Matthew 25:23, ESV). This is the only time where the Bible actually calls a man a ‘good and faithful servant.’
We come then to the third servant. “He also who had received the one talent came forward, saying, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man…so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here, you have what is yours.’” (Matthew 25:24-25). He buried the talent but also his gifts, abilities and potential. In a sense, he buried his life. It all stemmed from his mentality when he said, “I knew you were a hard man. I knew I could never please you. I knew I couldn't do enough for you.”
That's when people get started asking God things like “Are you really there? Do you really care? Do you love me?” The reverse of those questions, if somebody's dealing with hopelessness, would be to study God. As just one example, God is omnipresent. He's everywhere all time, but what does that really mean? Well, God is faithful; he’s paying attention to each moment in our lives, and he’s interested in personally engaging in each of those moments.
Having that knowledge of who God actually is gives me confidence. If there are troubles in my life, I can know that he’s still present with me. That means that my difficulties probably have purpose. I can move forward in hope because God is present, just and good.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 04-10-22, 20:20   #1238
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Default Re: POWER of PRAYER- No Matter Which Faith You Follow=GOD is With You

Freedom from Sin's Slavery



Faith is something you do based on what you know. Knowledge means nothing unless it is acted upon. Consider this example. The children of Israel received the good word that God had given them Canaan for a homeland. That information would have meant nothing at all to them, though, if they had remained in Egypt as slaves. The Bible says, “By faith [Moses] forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured as seeing Him who is invisible. …By faith [Israel] passed through the Red Sea as by dry land…” (Hebrews 11:27, 29, NKJV).
The Israelites did not march to the border of Canaan, fire one volley of arrows and expect all the enemy armies to drop dead. The land was theirs, but they had to possess it one step at a time.
Christ settled the issue of slavery to sin by declaring you emancipated from its dominion, but you have to believe it to the point that you do something about it. It is not enough to say, "Yes, I believe Christ forgives sin. I believe he is Lord. I know he can break the power of sin in my life." You are mentally consenting to what you heard, but faith is more than that. Faith is stepping out on that promise of freedom and acting upon it.
Scripture says, “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith” (1 John 5:3-4 NKJV).
“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking who he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. To him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever” (1 Peter 5:8-11 NKJV).
Believers overcome the evil power of this world through faith. True faith is the only thing that can help you stand up with confidence against the powers of temptation. Self-control is possible only when, by faith, the truth about our freedom in Christ is accepted.
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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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