Anyone who is having troubles should pray. ... When a believing person prays, great things happen. -James 5:13,16 NCV

The World's Fleeting Favors

As I reflect on Palm Sunday, it reminds me of how fleeting the favor of the world is. It can laud you one day and turn around and crucify you a few days down the road. We should not depend too much on it.

Father,

Help us to turn away from the glittering attractions of the world. Help us to remember that the things of You are the only things that really last. Help us to remember that even Your Son, who did all things perfectly, could not please everyone. Help us not to draw our personal worth from that source.

In Jesus' Name,
Amen

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Holy Week

Jesus, as we enter this week give us a sense of the suffering and anguish you went through for us. Let us never forget the price that was paid to reconcile us to the Father. Amen

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PALM SUNDAY




No pomp, high-flying banners or red carpet for You, my King.  Your retinue were peasants; Your banners were palm branches;  Your welcoming carpet was coats strewn on a dusty road.  So You entered Jerusalem; God on a donkey.  Here is humility that will imprint itself on my heart forever.  Here is the character of God.  Lord, remove every trace of arrogance from my soul.  Make me like You.  I love You.  Amen.

Mark 11:7-8 "When they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks over it, he sat on it.  Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread palm branches they had cut in the fields. Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted,

"Hosanna!
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!
Blessed is the kingdom of our father David!
Hosanna in the highest!"



Prayer from Maranatha Worship Bible
Amen

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Rejoice Greatly



Zechariah 9:9 (NIV)
   9 Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion! Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.


Father your ancient promise became a glorious event on the streets of Jerusalem when Jesus rode in triumph and humility on a donkey. It was an unprecedented opportunity, unequalled in Jewish history, with unimagined consequences. Before them was their long awaited King and Savior. It was a time to rejoice, to dance, to celebrate with overflowing joy. And yet tragically it turned into the sorrow of the ages. The King rejected, the Savior denied, the day of salvation thwarted. How could such a day of triumph turn into such soul numbing grief?

But Father we know that through the failure and rejection of the human race you still achieve your sovereign purpose of salvation for all who will believe. Thus we have the greatest event in history, the resurrection of your Son Jesus the Messiah. In those fateful days all of the events were used in your divine will to fulfill your plan motivated by your great and eternal love.

Yes Father, we will rejoice because our King has come and he is coming again!

Amen

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Prayer for Migraines

I have been battling headaches and migraines for two months now. Please pray with me.

For everyone who is suffering from headaches and migraines I pray.

Lord, release them from stress and muscle tightness.

Touch and heal the source of their pain and discomfort.

Give them wisdom and help from concerning medical professionals.

Bring encouragers and comforters to alleviate their pain.

In all things be glorified in those who suffer from headaches and migraines.

Amen
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What is prayer?



My blogging buddy Mike wrote a good (and short) piece on prayer [here] on his blog yesterday.
Here is something that I wrote in response to his post.
"I frankly struggle in this area Mike. Especially in the areas of petition and intercession. I agree with what you write but wonder if prayer is simply a word we use to describe our relationship with God? Perhaps praying without ceasing is a way to describe our walk with God? I am not saying that we should not intercede or offer petitions but wonder if those are just small facets of what it means to pray?"
I wonder how you might describe the concept of prayer. Maybe you can share a few sentences in the comments?


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Persistent Sin

I think all Christians struggle with persistent sins. The sins we seem to fall into over and over again, that never seem to go away. I know that I do. I would like to pray for help with those sins.

Father,

I thank You that you sent Your Son, Jesus Christ, to forgive our sins. Help us to remember that. Help us to trust You for forgiveness for our persistent sins. But help us to trust You to eliminate those sins from our lives. Help us not to become so discouraged that we simply accept them. Help us rather to trust in You for the power to keep on fighting them until they are finally gone.

In Jesus' name,
Amen

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REWARD ME




REasons to REad God's REvelation


So God can REward Me.

Psalm 119:1,2   "Blessed are the undefiled in the way;  who walk in the law of the Lord!  Blessed are those who keep His testimonies, who seek Him with the whole heart."

Dear Lord, the desire of my heart is to walk in Your ways and keep your testimonies.  Your Words are more valuable that silver and gold, a better REWARD than money can by.   They bring more pleasure than the sweetness of honey.  They satisfy my soul.  Father, I give you my whole heart.  Search me and see if there is any thing in my life that displeased you.  Help me to walk every day in You ways.  I love You, and I love your Word.   Amen.


This is the last of this series in Reasons to Read God's Word.Amen

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Pray for Your Enemies


Luke 6:27-28 & 36 (NLT)
   “But to you who are willing to listen, I say, love your enemies! Do good to those who hate you. 28 Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you…..36 You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.

Father this is something I really need help with. It is certainly beyond my own human ability or inclination to treat the enemies of humanity in this way. I shudder at the thought of showing any mercy toward those who violently victimize the innocent to the extermination of all who would oppose their evil genocidal intentions.

Father I need to remember that you are not only a God of loving compassion but also Holy Judgment as Paul so clearly wrote in Romans 12:19-21 (NLT) Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back,” says the LORD. 20 Instead, “If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals of shame on their heads.” 2 1Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good.”

Father for those who oppose You and all that is righteous “There is only the terrible expectation of God’s judgment and the raging fire that will consume his enemies. Hebrews 10:27 (NLT) Indeed Father as the Scripture boldly says: “It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Hebrews 10:31 (NLT)

So Father I pray for the conversion of the enemies that are so fierce in their hostility to you and the world You created and love. May they somehow perceive the evil of their ways, the mercy of God that is available for all and turn from their sinful hatred to Christ alone who is the only Savior and yes died even for them. Father your grace is unlimited and your judgement unrelenting and eternal. I pray they will choose grace.

And I ask this Father in the Name of Jesus who changed Saul of Tarsus from an agent of hate to an instrument of grace.

Amen

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A Prayer to Let Go and Move On

Lord, I commit my failures as well as my successes into your hands, and I bring
for your healing the people and the situations, the wrongs and the hurts of the past.

Give me courage, strength and generosity to let go and move on,
leaving the past behind me, and living the present to the full.

Lead me always to be positive as I entrust the past to your mercy,
the present to your love, and the future to your providence.

Amen
... a prayer of St Augustine     

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Desire For Sensitivity

Sometimes I feel like I blunder through life, insensitive to the needs and struggles of the people around me. I also can be insensitive to their need to know and follow Christ. It is easy to shrug this off by saying I am shy or I just do not know what to say. Or to feel like I am being nosy or pushy if I say anything. But I have to admit this is a real weakness of mine.

Father,

I pray for myself and all your children, that we might be sensitive to those around us. That you will give us the wisdom to know what to say or what not to say. That you will help us to be bold enough to help, without being obnoxious enough to drive people away. Help us to be those who care about others and do not just rush about on our own business, oblivious to those around us who are hurting.

In Jesus' Name,
Amen

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Lent: Week Four

Abba Father, let your name be glorified in us, in our work and play, in what we say and do, in our relationships with our brothers and sisters.

Your kingdom is a kingdom of love, forgiveness, and reconciliation, a kingdom of healing and wholeness. Let that kingdom come to our relationships as it is in heaven. Your will is that your children be one. Let that will be done in us as in heaven.

Give us each day what we need. Give us sustenance, grace, and faith.

Forgive us our sins, against you and against others. Help us to forgive those who sin against us, as many times as is necessary.

Don't let us give in to the temptation to build ourselves up at the expense of others, to prove that we are right and others are wrong, to hold grudges. Deliver us from evil.

Help us to remember that it is your kingdom, your power, and your glory forever and ever.

Amen.
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REFOCUS ME




REasons to REad God's REvelation

Today we will look at REfocus.

Psalm 119:37 "Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to your word."

Dear Lord, it seems like refocusing is a daily necessity.   I want to come to that place in my walk and faith that I can stay focused on what matters most.  What matters to You.  What you want for my life.  Help me to be focused in Your WORD, so like the verse above, you will preserve my life.  Everything we need for life and practice is found in your Word, dear Lord.  Keep me focused and when I stray, prick my heart and cause me to stop and refocus on YOU.  I love You.  Amen.


REasons to REad God's REvelation ~ So God can . . . .

REscue Me
REexamine Me
REpair Me
REfuel Me
REplenish Me
REinvigorate Me
REfocus Me












Amen

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The Honor and Horror of a Kiss


Psalm 2:12 (ESV)
   ”Kiss the Son…..”


Father we recognize the Biblical symbolic representation of a kiss as showing homage, affection and friendship toward someone we highly value. In relation to a King it was a way of demonstrating respect. So we are not surprised that Jesus was honored in this way and was certainly worthy of such adoration.
 
However Father, we are stunned that such a noble jester was used to identify Jesus by his betrayer Judas.
He was listed among the 12, he sat in seat of honor at the Last Supper, he held a trusted position as their treasurer, and he was personally involved in the ministry of Jesus. Yet, under this guise of devotion he became the Devil’s tool in a multifaceted conspiracy against Jesus.
 
Luke 22:47-48 (ESV) 
   47  …… there came a crowd, and the man called Judas, one of the twelve, was leading them. He drew near to Jesus to kiss him, 48  but Jesus said to him, “Judas, would you betray the Son of Man with a kiss?”
 
Father, I do not believe Jesus was surprised by the depravity of human nature nor of the deception that lurked within the heart of Judas. But he had to be saddened that a man of such privilege as a chosen disciple and apostle would succumb to the depth of such selfish ambition. Deception is evil in it’s every expression.
 
But none of this would hinder or prevent Jesus from sacrificing his life for the souls of men including those who conspired against him with such hostility and hatred.
 
Thank you Lord Jesus for love that knows no measure and mercy that knows no bounds. And I pray with the Apostle Paul for all of us: “…may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. 19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully.” Ephesians 3:18-19 (NLT)

Amen

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He's Holding My Hand

Dear Lord,
I'm late again. Late posting here. I wanted to thank You for being in control of my week. It's been a week of surprises starting with a sudden job interview. I don't know where this adventure will take me (or us) but if You are with me, I'll be okay. I have to admit, I was a little over whelmed with everything I've had to put in order this week, but it's come together in spite of my misgivings. The most amazing thing is how You have been admonishing me to trust You. Hold Your hand. Rest. Fear not. Be anxious for nothing. I've been a little anxious, a little fearful, but I'm holding on, Lord, and so are You. Thank You also for those You've put in my path to encourage me in this new endeavor. You always know just what I need.
 Amen

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Waken us from our Apathy

O Christ, our Morning Star,
Splendour of Light Eternal,
shining with the glory of the rainbow,
come and waken us
from the greyness of our apathy,
and renew in us your gift of hope.
Amen.

... Bede the Venerable

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Request for Humility

We live in an age of self promotion. Because of that, humility has become a rare commodity. Now humility is not putting ourselves down, but realizing that everything we are and have comes from God, and that we need to look at it realistically.

Father,

Help us to remember who we are. Help us to realize that everything we are and have is based on Your creation and Your salvation. Help us live, not to glorify ourselves, but You. And help us not to deny the real strengths you give us, but to recognize them as from You, to be used in your service,

In Jesus' Name,
Amen

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REINVIGORATE ME




Week six in REasons to REad God's REvelation

Today is REinvigorate Me.  Psalm 119:28  "My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to your word."

Dear Lord, how many times my soul is filled with sorrow at the condition of our world and the hatred and violence that is ever common on the news.  In our world, in our country and our neighborhoods.  Some times it hard to see the sunshine behind the clouds, but in this wonderful verse you have promised our strength comes not from our circumstances but from YOUR WORD.  You tell us over and over again, you are with us, and will never leave us.  We know the end of the story and there will come a time when we will reign with You in Your Kingdom.  But until then, Lord help me saturate myself with the Word of God.  Then and only then will I truly be reinvigorated.   I love You.  Amen.

Amen

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Mocking Jesus



“The leading priests, the teachers of religious law, and the elders also mocked Jesus...” Matthew 27:41 (NLT),   

Some of the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into their headquarters and called out the entire regiment ….Then they knelt before him in mockery ……. 31 When they were finally tired of mocking him..…”  Matthew 27:27-31 (NLT)

“….the revolutionaries who were crucified with him ridiculed him in the same way.” Matthew 27:44 (NLT)

“The people passing by shouted abuse, shaking their heads in mockery.” Matthew 27:39 (NLT)

Father I am both astonished and marvel at the love, mercy and patience of Jesus during the humiliation he endured by those who mocked him. He was not just another man considered to be a criminal, a false Messiah, a false prophet, a blasphemer who claimed to be God. He was God incarnate, your beloved Son, the Lord of glory and Savior of the world.

Such indignity and insult to the Creator of the universe and King of Kings is beyond imagination. And yet as Isaiah prophesied: “….He was led like a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers, he did not open his mouth. Isaiah 53:7 (NLT)
 
The Apostle Peter reminds us of the grace of Jesus under the fire of suffering when he wrote: “He did not retaliate when he was insulted, nor threaten revenge when he suffered.”   1 Peter 2:23 (NLT)

Father words fail me in adoration and worship of such loving grace, but I will say with the song writer:

Hallelujah What a Savior!!!


Amen

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Hope

Dear Lord,
It's been a rough few weeks. We've had some really discouraging days, and in the midst of it all I came to realize that I really hate marriage conferences, especially when my husband and I are struggling. They didn't tell us anything new, and after most of the sessions I was doing all I could to fight back the tears. I came home discouraged. We still weren't getting along and it felt as though nothing could ever make it better. Deep inside I was terribly angry and I've come to realize that I often nurse those bitter thoughts by justifying them rather than giving them to you, Jesus. I don't immediately cry out for help. Instead I often dig in my heels and hold onto my pride as tightly as I think my husband hangs onto his, and that only takes us farther down a road that neither of us wants to travel. Tonight, I thank you, Lord, for walking the road with us, for turning us back in the right direction, and giving us hope.
I pray that you would use us as an encouragement to not only our friends, but our children as well. Please forgive my anger and unforgiveness. Thank you for loving me when I am unlovable and undeserving, for filling me with Your spirit, and making me able to love others even when I find them (temporarily) unlovable.
Amen

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3 dollars worth...


Lord, may our prayer never be this. May we want all of you, God. May we want to be transformed by your Holy Spirit. Explode our souls! Give us ecstasy! Lord, we pray for new birth in You. 

~~~~~~~~~~~

I would like to buy $3 worth of God, please.
Not enough to explode my soul or disturb my sleep,
but just enough to equal a cup of warm milk
or a snooze in the sunshine.

I want ecstasy, not transformation.
I want warmth of the womb, not a new birth.
I want a pound of the Eternal in a paper sack.
I would like to buy $3 worth of God, please.
— Wilbur ReesT

Amen

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Undiagnosed Illnesses

One of the great frustrations in life is to suffer from an illness that doctors cannot seem to diagnose. I have experienced this in my own life, my wife's, and those of various of my friends.

Father,

I pray for those who suffer with chronic illness, particularly those who struggle to identify what it is. I pray that you will give them your peace. I pray that you will give the doctors wisdom in knowing how to treat them and lead them to doctors who can help. I pray more than this, that You will be their Healer and bring about that healing in any way You see fit. And if it is Your will that they should continue to suffer, I pray You will give them Your strength and Your peace to deal with the situation.

In Jesus' Name,
Amen

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Lent: Week Three

Father, make us a people of repentance, forgiveness, and reconciliation. May we be known in our families, communities, and workplaces as people of compassion toward others. Work in us in such a way that the world becomes thirsty for the living water they see flowing out of us. Amen

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