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Showing posts with label ask. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ask. Show all posts

Monday, September 14, 2020

All Things Are Good in God’s Plan

September 14, 2020 - LISTEN HERE

Romans 8:28

We know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose.

When bad things are happening, it’s difficult to grasp that ‘all things work together for good.’ Since the early part of 2020, we have seen entire industries collapse, millions have become unemployed, thousands of businesses burned and vandalized. We’ve seen our children become pawns in this sinister COVID plot and we’ve had our sense of security and life-rhythm turn upside down.

 When God promised to work all things together for good, He didn’t mean that all the things would be easy or good. Some situations and events are decidedly bad. But God uses all things – the good and the bad, weaving them into a good outcome for those who are called by His name. He sees the big picture; He has a master plan. We need to trust the outcome is in His hands, and in His time.

When I think about “staying the course” and trusting God’s outcome “no matter what” what the journey has in store, I often think of the story of Joseph found in the book of Genesis, beginning in Chapter 37.

Joseph experienced a lifetime of bad things. When he was just 17 years old, he was sold into slavery by his brothers. Later, he was thrown in prison under false accusations where he lived in captivity for more than 13 years, until God gifted him the ability to interpret dreams. His skill brought him to the Pharaoh. Impressed, he was given full responsibility to prepare Egypt to be in a state of abundance as the entire region experienced a 7-year severe famine.

When the truth of Joseph’s identity was finally revealed to his brothers, two years into the famine, Joseph said, 

“God sent me ahead of you to establish you as a remnant within the land and to keep you alive by a great deliverance. Therefore, it was not you who sent me here, but God. (Genesis 45:7-8)...You planned evil against me; God planned it for good to bring about the present result—the survival of many people. (Genesis 50:20)

Joseph trusted God with the Plan for his life. He never questioned the separation from his family, the years of slavery, his duties through the years of famine. He lived faithful to God and to God’s plan until he died at 110 years of age

The story of Joseph inspires is to know that when we are “called according to God’s purpose,” all things will work together for good. God’s plan will not fail, no matter what it looks like in our eyes and no matter how long it takes. When we look at today’s current events and trust God’s ability to see the full length of our life, we can be sure that He is working powerfully on our behalf to fulfill His Purpose. 

Today’s Prayer:
Dear Lord, Your Word inspires us every day. Stories from thousands of years ago are as pertinent today as they were long ago. Lord, remove our doubts. Help us to have the courage to trust the plan, Your plan, no matter what it looks like to our human eyes and no matter how long it takes. We may not get what we want, what we ask for, but Lord, we trust that You will grant our requests a “this or something better.” When we keep our eyes fixed on You, we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. In Jesus’s name, Amen.

 

Thursday, September 3, 2020

Lord Teach Me; I Will be Silent and Listen

 September 3, 2020 - LISTEN HERE

Job 6:24 


Teach me, and I will be silent. Help me understand what I did wrong. 

 

We found today’s verse in the middle of Job’s dismay – He was trying to understand why he lost everything, including all his worldly possessions and all seven of his children. Job cried out to God, asking God to understand where he had strayed, what he had done wrong, what sin needed repentance. Job pleaded with God to get him out of the horrible predicament he was in.

 

Job tells God that he will be silent and listen as only God could help him to understand the errors of his ways.

 

How often do we cry out to God, to show us the way, to give us answers, to help us to understand a given situation, to resolve a difficulty...?

 

Do we then choose to be silent – and to really listen for God’s reply?

 

God’s voice is subtle. It can be a windchime in the wind, in the chirp of a bird. His message can come through a word or a phrase in a very familiar song played at “just” the right time. His lessons can come through a single line in a movie or from a conversation overheard while standing in line.

 

If we are silent, stop our mental chatter...and then really listen – God can find a space where He can teach us...and we are willing to learn.

 

No matter how tough things became, Job never gave up. He always trusted that God knew what He was doing and believed that eventually, he would understand why God put him through so much adversity. In the end, his faith prevailed and God restored everything to Job, even greater than what he had originally lost.

 

We need to LEARN to look at life through the same lens: When we ASK, we need to be silent so we can hear God’s response.  

 

Today’s Prayer:

Dear Lord, thank You that we can find guidance in every book of the Bible, even the oldest books of the Old Testament. Your Word, Your teachings, Your training rings true from thousands of years in the past – and will be true for thousands of years forward into Eternity. Your Greatness abounds, Lord, and we pray for any and all understanding and clarity we need in our lives that is keeping us at distance from You. Oh Lord, hear our prayers. Silence our minds. Teach us how to be ever closer to You. In Jesus’s name. Amen.


Photo 161390938 © David Burke | Dreamstime.com

 

Friday, August 28, 2020

Give Jesus the Chance to Bless You: Ask - Seek - Knock

August 28, 2020 - Keep asking! - LISTEN HERE

Matthew 7:7-8

(I especially like the Amplified version of this verse:)  
"Ask and keep on asking and it will be given to you; seek and keep on seeking and you will find; knock and keep on knocking and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who keeps on asking receives, and he who keeps on seeking finds, and to him who keeps on knocking, it will be opened."

How do you feel about asking God….for everything? 
  • Are you apologetic or fearful when you ask? 
  • Do you only ask for small things? 
  • Do you ask for very few things? 
How are we supposed to ask? 

Hebrews 4:16 says to "come boldly to the throne.” 

When you were a kid and you wanted something from your dad, did you start by saying how unworthy you were to even ask? Did you creep up to his chair, grovel on the floor, beg for a toy....and then hope that he heard you?

 

Unless you had a very abusive father, it’s highly doubtful this was your approach. 


The Lord also says - "Except ye become as little children...” 
— how many times a day does your 5-year-old ask you for something? 

We have the living God, ask Him; He is open. He is accessible, He is alive. You can have a personal relationship with Him.  Be yourself before God. Present your problems and your desires to Him every day. Dream big. The God who made the entire Universe with his outstretched arm can surely meet your needs according to His riches in glory. 

Ask, Seek, Knock…. and give Jesus the chance to bless, give, do. 

Today’s Prayer: 
Dear Lord, thank You that we can ask…and that You hear our prayers. You know what is heavy on our hearts. You know what makes us happy, what makes us worry, what makes us sad. You have even numbered the hairs on your head. You have told us that we ‘have not because we ask not’. 

Today, we come to you with a humble heart and yet, with the exuberance of a 5-yo child. We ask for our heart’s desires. We ask for financial security…for health and healing….for a loving relationship…for restoration of our country to the place where we can say, “in God We Trust.” We place our desires at your feet and ask for all these things….this or something better. In Jesus’s name. Amen. 

Photo credit: Photo 116238999 © Yuryz | Dreamstime.com

Monday, August 3, 2020

Have Hope, Be Patient, Pray Persistently

August 3, 2020 - LISTEN HERE

Romans 12:12 "Rejoice in hope; be patient in trouble; be persistent in prayer."

What is Biblical HOPE?
In the English language, “hope” implies doubt; “hope so" implies something may - or may not happen. Biblical hope is different. It has as its foundation faith in God. 
 
Biblical hope comes from Hebrews 11:1 - "Faith is the assurance that what we hope for will come about; the proof of what is not seen." Biblical hope carries no doubt. Biblical hope is a sure foundation upon which we base our lives, believing that God always keeps His promises.  
 
What is PATIENCE?
Patience is one of the fruits of the Spirit. God rewards our patience by increasing our faith and trust that He has heard us and responds in Right Time. Exercising patience is hard, but it’s in our weakest moments that God reveals His strength. Here are a few quotes to inspire you when you are struggling with a situation that requires patience:
  • Patience is not the ability to wait but the ability to keep a good attitude while waiting.
  • You can’t rush something you want to last forever.
  • You may not see it, but you have to trust it’s on its way.
  • Be careful about rushing God’s timing. You don't know what He is protecting you from.
What is PERSISTENCE? 
The dictionary definition of persistence is this: Refusing to give up or let go
 

Now, re-read the verse this way: "Rejoice without doubt; know that God hears you and it’s in His time; be patient in trouble; pray continually and refuse to give up.”

 
Today's Prayer
Dear Lord, Your Word gives clear direction to cover all situations in our lives. Help us to always rejoice in the hope of knowing You are in control. Allow us to clearly hear Your Plan for our life. Fill us with patience as a gift from You, that we are anxious for nothing but in ALL things trust that You want only the best for us. For these assurances, we give thanks as we remain persistent in prayer. We trust You know best, as You restructure our lives in these challenging times. Thy will be done. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

When I Pray, God Answers - with Kate Shimerani

July 28, 2020 - LISTEN HERE - With special Guest, Kate Shimerani

 

Psalms 86:7 

“I will call to You whenever I'm in trouble, and You will answer me.”

 

Unless we have a daily on-going dialogue with God, it seems we seek Him most in times of trouble.

 

There is an expression: When a door closes, a window will open. While that phrase isn’t found in the bible – it has been attributed to Alexander Grahm Bell and Helen Keller, among others, it certainly is a hopeful phrase to use in your daily prayers.

 

Don’t we often say, “Lord, why has that door closed? Why have there been so many delays? Lord, where is the open window?”

 

There are literally dozens of verses that say “Ask and it is given” – and so our role in this relationship is to ask. God hears our prayers....even though sometimes the response is wait...or not right now... or sometimes, the answer is even no – which I why I always remember to ask, “Lord, I ask for this or something better.”

 

The essential part is getting to the place of belief that you're prayers will be answered.  


But what is a belief? By definition, a belief is a closely held thought. When you really want something to come into your life...or want something to change in your life, you need to visualize already having it, visualize that you have already received it. 


When you pray, have the feeling that your request has arrived. Feel what it will feel like when God has delivered the deepest desires of your heart. If you can have a calmness, a surety in your spirit that your prayers have already been answered, the energetic attraction will speed the arrival of what God has in store for you.

 

If your prayers have not yet been answered, the next step is faith: Faith is taking your hands off the steering wheel... to let God be in charge of the timeline.  

 

Today’s Prayer:

Dear Lord, we asked for Your favor, Lord, and today, with gratitude. It’s a new phase in our day-to-day life...something is shifting. Help us to let go of the past; people change when times change.

 

You provide just enough light on the road for us to stay the course; We know You see the ENTIRE road of our life, from beginning to end. Thank you, Lord, for walking with each of us, guiding us to a place of peace, fulfillment, and prosperity.