Prayer for Today

God is faithful

October 1, 2015

Father God, I often pray the part of the Lord’s Prayer that says, “Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” without thinking about what I’m really saying. Today I am asking for Your will to be done in my life.

Father, You know what good, right and is perfect for me because every good and perfect gift comes from You. You know exactly what I need and when I need it. You know how to show Your strength, power and righteousness through my life. Today I commit to submitting to Your overarching authority over my life and I permit You to have Your perfect way in me.

Lord, when my flesh starts to scream because it is uncomfortable, comfort me by Your Holy Spirit. Father, I’ve been praying for (fill in whatever you’ve been praying for. Some examples: a closer walk with God, a healthier lifestyle, a mate, a change of heart, a financial blessing, your children, deliverance from past pains, etc.) ___________________________________________________ and I know the first step to moving forward in this is for Your will to be done in my life.

I will not listen to unwise council. I will keep my eyes steadfast and fix on You because You are the author, the perfecter and the finisher of my faith.

In Jesus name I pray.  Amen.

Scripture references:

Matthew 6:10                                                  Proverbs 15:21 – 23

Matthew 7:11                                                   I Peter 5:10

James 2:23                                                          Hebrews 12:2

Romans 12:1 – 2

II Corinthians 1:2 – 4

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Prayer for Today

 Created Chosen Called

Bible reading challenge:

Read all the scriptures referenced at the bottom of each pray.

September 16, 2015

God, the Father of heaven and earth, show me what I have in my life that I can give to You to help Your people. Lord, help me to see beyond the obvious, to look past what I see with my natural eye that may stop me from giving my best.

Father, I give you all my past hurts and shames that are holding me back. I give You my less than stellar esteem of myself and exchange it for esteeming myself in Christ Jesus. In Christ, there is no condemnation. In Christ, there is no shame. In Christ, my uniqueness is my strong suit for carrying out the tasks You prepared for me before the beginning of mankind.

Savior, help me to know and understand, through Godly wisdom, that I have been ordained by You for service. I have been given my gifts, talents and abilities to be utilized by You to help further the kingdom of God here on earth.

Give me the courage to use my gifts for You. Give me the courage to ignore what people may say and listen to only what You say so I may use my gifts as You have deemed appropriate. Give me Your strength and endurance so I can fulfill Your will for my life.

I believe You will answer my prayer. I thank You in advance for Your faithfulness to Your word over my life. In Jesus name I pray. Amen.

Scripture references:

Deuteronomy 31:6

Psalm 139:16

Proverb 19:21

Romans 8:1

Romans 12:1 – 21

I Corinthians 2:9

Ephesians 2:10

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Go With What You Know

Slingshot

 

I Samuel 17:38 – 39

Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armor on him and a bronze helmet on his head. David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them. “I cannot go in these,” he said to Saul, “because I am not used to them.” So he took them off.”

In the scripture above David was going out to kill Goliath. That was his plan from the beginning; to kill the person who was bringing reproach against the God of Israel. Yes, there were other people who heard Goliath’s threats and they planned to do nothing. Yes, there were people who were better prepared, with more experience and better equipped than David to battle Goliath but they didn’t have the heart, the passion or the resolve of David to protect the name of the Lord.

Everyone is always talking about how David went out to kill Goliath with a slingshot and five smooth stones but I think David went out with much more than human eyes can see. First, David went out to kill Goliath with history. He knew what God would do in order to protect him. God had given David the strength to fight and kill a bear and a lion, two foes that were mightier and fiercer than any man.

Second, David went out against Goliath with courage. To fight a bear and a lion in order to save some sheep means David had a level of courage locked in his DNA that not everyone has at their disposal. It’s like the Marines, policemen, firemen or another first responder; while everyone else is running away from terror or a disaster, they are running towards it. Not everyone has what it takes to do these types of jobs. David had what it took to lay his life on the line for some sheep; certainly, he had what it took to lay his life on the line to protect the name and character of his God.

Third, David went out to kill Goliath with equipment he was accustomed to using when he was in battle. Saul tried to give David his equipment but David declined because Saul’s equipment didn’t fit David; it was not designed for the type of fighting David was used to doing.

There are things that God has told, or will tell, you do to that looks like someone else is better qualified to do, but they don’t have what it takes. They don’t have the heart, the passion or the resolve to do what God needs to have done. That’s why He’s asked, or will ask, you to do it!

You have everything you need to do what God has asked, or will ask, you to do. You have the history, the internal resolve and the equipment you need to get it done!

Oh yes, there is one more thing about David that should be admired and imitated; he didn’t procrastinate! He went out to kill Goliath right away. He didn’t give himself or anyone else time to talk him out of it.

When God asked us to do something we need to move out quickly and go with what we know!

“So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.” James 4:17

 

 

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Out of the Box

Created Chosen Called

August 12, 2015

Genesis 1:26

“Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

When I purchase a rose for my garden, I have a plan. I know where I’m going to put the rose, the nutrient levels I need the soil to possess and how to feed, water and protect the rose until its root system stabilizes in its new environment. I have a plan that the rose doesn’t know anything about.

The rose is shipped to me in a plain brown cardboard box. There is nothing in the box with the rose except other bare root roses that I may have purchased at the same time. If I purchased a single rose, it is in the box by itself.

I can only image how the rose must feel when I plant it in its new place. It goes from being in a dark empty box without soil or water into an open air space with at least six hours of sunlight, soil, vitamins and food. What a shock to its fragile system!

I’m sure if my roses could complain they would. They have probably become use to living in the dark bareness of the box but, in order to live, the rose must have the sun, soil, water and food, things that the roses can’t get while in the box. So, they may have become accustom to living in the box, if they stay there, they will die.

Yes, God does the same thing to and for us. You and I ask God for growth; financial, spiritual or personal growth so we can do more, have more or become more for the Kingdom of God. He answers our prayers and responses to our request. He begins to move us from our dark and confining boxes to new places where we can grow. And what do we do? We complain!

We wanted to grow where we were, in the confines of the boxes we have put ourselves in! We don’t want to change, we don’t want other things to change, we don’t want to do anything different, and we just want to grow where we are. Sorry! It doesn’t work that way!

God did not create us to be confined to dark, lifeless boxes. He created us to live in His Son and in the sun. What does that mean? It means God created us to live our spiritual lives in the light, soil and be feed by the life of His son AND to live our natural lives in the abundance here on earth. God never designed us to live in lack or less than. Neither in this life nor the one to come.

In order for us to grow, God has to move us to a place where the totality of who we are can be used and displaced as we experience new things. God is taking out of our boxes because He wants us to live and not die in the dark empty lives so many of us are now living.

Yes, it’s time to come out of your box!

“He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness.” II Corinthians 9:10

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You Were Chosen

Picked out

 

Matthew 22:14

For many are invited, but few are chosen.”

When I chose a rose for my garden, I don’t pick it based on one characteristics of the rose; I pick it based on the totality of the rose. So not only do I pick a rose based on its color, I chose it on how the blooms are going to look. Will the blooms have lots and lots of petals or just a few?  I chose it based on the fragrance; is it lightly fragranced or is it heavily fragranced?  Does it smell like honey or does it smell like a traditional rose?

I also look at the type of leaves the rose is going to have. Will the leaves be bright green and shiny or will they be a matted green? I also look at the stem of the roses; will they be long-stemmed so I can use the rose in a single rose vase or will they be short stemmed so I can use them in an arrangement?

So you see, everything that the rose is goes into my decision-making process of whether or not I’m going to plant the rose in my garden. Yes, each facet of the rose is important, but one piece without the others doesn’t make the rose what it really is. It is the totality of the rose plant that makes the rose what I want in my garden.

God does the same thing with us. When God chooses us to do a particular assignment He chooses us based on the totality of who we are; our temperament, the things that we’ve gone through in order to bring us to the place where we are now, our looks, our background and upbringing. All these things make us who we are and are the reasons God chooses us for our assignments.

Unfortunately, all too often we look at ourselves through the eyes of the world system and only see what we think the world sees when it looks at us. The world system says over and over again, we have to be super model thin in order to be considered worthy of being called attractive. The world system says we have to be rich or famous in order to be counted amount those whom others should listen to. The world system says we have to be educated with the right type of degrees and from the right schools or we’ll be outsiders and not allowed to join them at the popular table. But, no matter what the world tells us, it does not stop God from doing what He’s going to do and it shouldn’t stop us from doing what God has assigned us to do.

If God has given you an assignment, and He has given us all an assignment, what the world system says about you doesn’t amount to a hill of beans. When God gave each of us our assignments, He has already measured the totality of who we are and He knows we can successfully complete the assignment.

The world system only knows the labels it has placed on us. God knows who He created us to be.

 

“But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.” I Corinthians 1:27

 

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The Same but Different

cropped-julians-pix-6691.jpg

James 1:13 – 15

When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed.  Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.”

I have a dozen roses in my front yard. I basically care for each of them the same way; I feed and water them at the same time, clip them when they need it and make sure the soil nutrient levels are correct. I care for them equally.

My Double Delight rose, which is pictured above, is right at my front door because it’s beautiful and has a strong honey sweet aroma. When you walk up to my door and Double Delight is in bloom, the last thing you smell before you come into my house is the sweet fragrance of the rose. YUMMY!

The problem with the Double Delight is it is susceptible to black spots and yellow leaves. It is so susceptible to the disease that I have to pay special attention to the rose all summer because if I allow the disease a little room it will destroy every leaf on the Double Delight and defoliate the rose completely.

Right next to the Double Delight I have the John F. Kennedy rose; which is beautiful too but in a very different way than the Double Delight. The John F. Kennedy rose is not susceptible to black spots or yellow leaves but, Japanese Beatles LOVE the John F. Kennedy but they don’t really care for the Double Delight. So, even though the two roses are sitting right next to each other in the garden, they have too different challenges that I have to content with in order to keep them alive and healthy.

It is the same way for us in the Body of Christ. We have been engrafted into the Body of Christ by His redemptive blood and His finished work on the cross. We have been made spiritual siblings and yet, we are all tempted and drawn away from God by our own temptations.

What tempts you to turn away from your relationship with Christ may not bother me at all and what tempts me may not cause you to think about it twice. You see, just like my roses, we are individuals with different challenges, needs and desires. Coming to Christ doesn’t make us clones, it makes us saved. We are still the people we were before our salvation.

Our struggles are the same, our issues are the same, our aptitudes are the same, and the things we are susceptible to are the same. The difference is how we handle the struggles and the issues. The difference is how we handle the temptations. We are all the same; we all have struggles, issues and temptations but we are all different in how we handle them. None of us have any room to throw stones at someone else.

This is why we can’t judge someone else’s walk in Christ. We can’t judge how God is using them, or not, when or how. We don’t know all the particulars in that person life. Only God knows that and He is the one that directs the steps of us all.

One reason I love gardening is because flowers don’t have the ability to look over at another flower and try to compare themselves, whether for better or for worse. They don’t have the ability to see what I’m doing to one plant that I may not be doing to or for them. There is no envy or jealousy between plants like there often is between people.

While we are all the same in Christ because God is not a respecter of person, we are all very different and He treats us different according to His call on our lives.

 

“But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor.” Galatians 6:4

 

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Coming Out of Someone Else’s Normal, Into My Destiny – II

failure success decision

 

Romans 8:29 – 30

For those whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that He might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom He predestined He also called, and those whom He called He also justified, and those whom He justified he also glorified.”

No one wants to get to the end of their live and consider themselves a failure. In fact, most people don’t want to fail at anything they endeavor to do. But, do we feel the same way about fulfilling our God-given purpose? Are we willing to fail at what God has predestined us to do in order to fit into someone else’s box? Are we willing to forego our calling so we can be liked? Are we willing to neglect our predestination in order to get along with others? Are we willing to fail God so others can feel good about us?

In every family everyone has a role. Some of us are the “go to” person. You know, the one everyone calls when things are falling apart. The one everyone expects to have all the answers and take care of everything even when it’s not their responsibility. Then you have the “baby” of the family. Not that they are a baby or the youngest in the family, they just act like a helpless, hapless baby. They expect to be taken care of by everyone else because that’s their role. And of course, you have the irresponsible one. We all have them in our families, they are the ones that no one can count on for anything, and usually, they are the lazy one that does nothing but expects a share of, or a free ride to, everything that goes on in the family.

But what if your family role was not the role God has appointed for you? Are you willing to give up the role your family expects you to play in order to fulfill your God given appointment?

Sometimes, we are called out of our current situation and into our destiny like David, but other times, we’ve got to walk into our destiny in spite of what others may think or say.  We’ve got to know that if God called us to our destiny, He’s made the way for us to fulfill our call and, our gifts will make room for us.

Are you struggling with knowing you’re more than others give you credit for?  Or, are you fighting within yourself to move past your fears and reach for the unknown because you know that God has ordained greater for you?

If you answered to either of these questions is “yes” then you have a bigger question to answer; Are you willing to be a failure in God’s plan for you, rather than being the success He’s already ordained you to be?

The biblical meaning of success is summed up in Acts 20:24 “However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.”

Not succeeding at our God-given task means hundreds, possibility thousands or event millions of lives will not affected by the eternity plan that is in you.

To fail or to succeed, the decision is yours.

 

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Prayer for Today

Failure success future

April 27, 2015

Father, when we realize how far we’ve allowed ourselves to fall into the pit falls of the world system, we feel hurt and disappointed with ourselves. Not only have we fallen into the financial pitfall of the world system but also the mental, emotion, physical and spiritual pitfalls. Thank You Lord for allowing us to go into the pits, but not allowing us to stay there!

Father, just like You were with Joseph when he went into the pit, You have been with us. You were with Joseph every step of the way during his time in Potiphar’s home, while he was in prison and when he served in the court of Pharaoh; and You have been with, are still with and will continue to be with us.

Father, You didn’t leave Joseph in the pit falls of his life and You won’t leave us in our pitfalls. You brought Joseph out of his pits more powerful than when he went in to the pits and You will do the same thing for us if we have the character of Joseph.

Father You blessed Joseph because he operated in his gifts, no matter the circumstances he was facing. He was always honorable to his masters/bosses no matter how they treated him. Joseph always He handled the business affairs that were given to him with knowledge and truth and he always gave You, Lord God, the glory.

Father, while I am climbing out of the pit falls of the world system, help me to have the character of Joseph in all aspects of my life. It is in Jesus name I pray and say Amen.

Scripture references:

Genesis 37:23 – 24

Genesis 39:1 – 6

Genesis 39:11 – 12

Genesis 39:20 – 23

Genesis 40:8

Genesis 41:15 – 16

 

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Prayer for Today

February 19, 2015

Good morning Father God! Thank You for this day and the many blessings You have determined to bestow upon me today.

Please help me to have the right perspective on things. Life is short but eternity is forever. I want to work on and walk in the things that are going to follow me into eternity. I don’t want the work I do here on earth to have no heavenly gain.

Father I want to start each day with my priorities in place and a tentative plan for where I will invest my time and energy. I want my life’s focus to be about what matters to You.

Lord don’t let me be complacent or use denial and lies as excuses for not doing what You’ve purposed for me. Please clearly give me your priorities for this season of my life. Guide and direct my steps so that I may fulfill Your plan and purpose for my life. In Jesus name. Amen.

Scripture references:

Proverbs 14:8

Proverbs 23:23

John 16:13

I Corinthians 9:24

 

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Not Mine! All His! Part I

“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. So do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord or of me his prisoner. Rather, join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God. He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.” II Timothy 1:6 -10 (NIV)

In common vernacular, Paul was telling Timothy, who was timid person, “You’ve got to come out of that timidity and do what God has called you to do. Don’t allow your gifts to smolder and slowly burn out. No! Fan them into a flame so people can see them burn. You can’t hide what God has given you. Get out of your comfort zone! God didn’t save you, empower you and give you His grace so you can hide! No! You’ve got to get into the battle!

When we give God our minds, bodies and spirits we are saying we no long lay claim to ourselves. Everything about us, strengths, weaknesses, insecurities, pride, gifts, talents and even our fears are not ours anymore; they belong to God.

Nothing we call ours is ours any more. Our spouses, children, homes, jobs, all our belongings belong to God. Everything God has given us is at His disposal to teach, correct or bless us. In other words, we don’t have the authority to tell God “no” any more. Everything God says goes!

Stop fighting God! Staying in your comfort zone is not an option any more. We have to let the light of our gifts shine knowing they are going to attract good and bad attention. We’re going to have fight against our internal enemies and our external foes in order to fulfill our destinies.

It’s time for us to stop sitting on the sidelines watching others fight their fight of faith. It’s time for everyone to get into the battle! Are you ready?Sword Sharper than Two Edge Sword