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

LET'S GET GROWING


 Image result for Plants


2 Peter 3:18 "But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  To him be glory both now and forever.  Amen"



Dear Lord, in this new year of 2018 I want to grow more, learn more, study more.  I want to know you better than I ever have in all the years I've been your child.  I never want to stop growing.
Help me this year to study your word with a new anticipation of growth in my life, my attitudes, my love for You and my family.  I'm so glad you planted me in your garden.  Now help me to bloom in my corner of the world.  I love You.  Amen.

I trust that those who read this will join me in this prayer for 2018






 googleimages.com

Amen

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Seize the Day


Psalm 118:24 (NIV)
     “This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”

Psalm 39:4-5 (NLT)
     “LORD, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered— how fleeting my life is. 5 You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand. My entire lifetime is just a moment to you; at best, each of us is but a breath.”

Father these verses are complimentary to each other in that one speaks of the blessings of life and the other the brevity of life. They present a balance that we need to be mindful of each day of the year. We should not take a single day for granted nor lose sight of the opportunity, joy and possibilities each day presents. Every day is an adventure in living, in discovering and in developing our relationship with you and others.

Father we ask you to help us remember the blessings and brevity of each day and to live each one with eternities values in view. We pray with the Psalmist: “Teach us to number our days carefully so that we may develop wisdom in our hearts.” Psalm 90:12 (HCSB)

In Jesus name, Amen.

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a new years prayer

Dear Lord, in this coming year please grant me to have:
  • A few friends who understand me and remain my friends;
  • Work to do which has value, without which the world would be the poorer;
  • A mind unafraid to travel, even though the trail be not blazed;
  • An understanding heart;
  • A sense of humor;
  • Times for quiet, silent meditation;
  • A feeling of your presence in my life;
  • The patience to wait for the coming of these things;
  • And the wisdom to recognize when these things come.
Praying in faith in the name of Christ our Lord.

Amen
...adapted from an anonymous prayer.

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He is Our Peace

And in despair I bowed my head;
"There is no peace on earth," I said;
"For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!"

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
"God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good will to men."

Great and Wonderful God,

We awake this morning with a promise in our heart - that there is peace. Peace between you and us, peace that only came once Jesus came. Peace that removed the separation our sin created from you. 

As we consider how our sin and rebellion created a war between us and you, we rejoice in how Jesus brought peace between you and I once and for all! Because Father, you are not dead. You continue to work in the hearts of your people today, to push back the effects of the Fall and bring others close to you. What joy! What work to be done! May we be your hands and feet on this earth, bringing your peace.

We praise you and thank you for giving us your Son, who brought peace, showed us the way, and became our Great Rescuer. The Prince of Peace!

These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)

Amen





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Christmas

Jesus, we thank you that you did what the will of human could never do when you became one of us so that we can be children of God. Thank you for your love and grace that brought you to our world. Amen

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THE BIRTH OF JESUS










 We yearn our Father, for the simple beauty of Christmas ~~ for all the old familiar melodies and words that remind us of that great miracle, when He who made all things was one night to come as a Babe, to lie in the crook of a woman's arm.

Before such mystery we kneel, as we follow the shepherds and wise men to bring Thee the gift of our love ~ a love that we confess has not always been as warm or sincere or real as it should have been.  But now, on this Christmas Day, that love would find its Beloved, and from Thee receive the grace to make it pure again, warm and real.  We bring Thee our gratitude for every token of Thy love.  

~~Peter Marshall.
image ~ one of my Nativity collections



Amen


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Why I Say Merry Christmas




Luke 2:10& 13-14 (ESV)
       ”……the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.
13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”


Father, that sounds like Merry Christmas to me and with an angelic choir as an exclamation point. It may have been the first Christmas greeting in recorded history.  How wonderful that this greeting brought such dramatic change in the humble shepherds from awful fear to awe inspiring joy.  Such is the affect of the good news: “The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!”  Luke 2:11 (NLT)


Father, without the birth of Your Son there is no Christmas, there is no forgiveness, there is no peace, no joy or happy holidays. Father, Jesus is the center of Christmas, the focus of Christmas, the purpose of Christmas and the message Christmas which he explained in John 3:16 (HCSB) “For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.”

Indeed: “Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!” 2 Corinthians 9:15 (NIV) Father because of your gracious gift, we can say to one and all Merry Christmas!!!


Amen!


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Useful Words

Heavenly Father, through the love and grace and overcoming power of Your Holy Spirit, give me the wisdom to choose light at every turn for Your light will disperse the darkness. Thank You for Your Word to live by; I treasure it so! May I discover beauty in everyone and live peaceably. May I answer tenderly with patience and self-control. Holy Spirit, fill me afresh with your goodness so I may always speak good words, useful words. (Matthew 12:35) Speaking when it's time to speak and being silent when it's time to be silent. (Ecclesiastes 3:7) Let my words be wise and gracious. (Ecclesiastes 10:12) Let my lips if they speak, speak what is wise and proper. (Proverbs 10:32) Thank You, Lord, for wisdom to use few carefully chosen words and to pick my conversations equally well. Most of all, gracious God, thank You for Your promise that if I need wisdom, I can just ask You. Amen

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God With Us


"But when the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman."

God with us,

I've come to see you. I'm not as clean as I wish I was, but I'm hoping you'll receive me just as you did the rough, and sweaty shepherds who burst in on you on that holy night so long ago. They were afraid. I guess that spectacular light show in the sky got to them. I wish I felt more afraid than I do. I should, considering this is it: the Incarnation. But all of this is so simple; so ordinary. No, it's less than ordinary. This is abject poverty. Most babies aren't born where the livestock is. I keep asking myself, how can this be God? Yet, here you are. I know it's you, because here I am, on my knees, and my heart is aflame within me.

It isn't as pristine as the Christmas cards make it seem. It's cold, and drafty, and filthy, and it smells of animals and dung in here. No wise men are hovering over you with their gifts. The shepherds aren't even here. Just me, and your folks, and my hands are empty. But Lord, seeing you like this, so vulnerable, my heart is full.

Look at you in that feeding trough. I can't get over how tiny you are, but oh. You are perfect. The scriptures say when you grow up you won't be much to look at, but I don't think I've ever seen such a gorgeous child. I hope I always see you like this: beautiful, new, and surprising.

Oh my! Your mom is bringing you to me! Thank you, Mary. You really are full of grace. This is incredible! I feel so clumsy, Lord. Like I can hurt you if I'm not careful. But you feel so good in my arms. You're like a warm little ball of pure love. Can you feel me shaking? I'm undone. You're right here at my heart. I wish I could stop time right here, and hold you like this forever, loving on you, and kissing you like this.

You still smell like the blood from your mother's womb. Oh, Jesus. You'll have this same coppery scent again in about 33 years. But it'll be a much bloodier occasion than your birth. That time, you'll be dying, so that I can be born anew. Have mercy. I don't want to think about what I'm going to put you through. Not today. But I can't help it.

Oh, man. Forgive me, Jesus. I'm crying all over you. You're the baby, but I'm the one blubbering. I'm not trying to scare you on your birthday, but the shadow of the cross is on this barn, and there isn't a thing I can do to stop what's going to happen to you. So, I'll just continue to hold you tight, if you don't mind. If I can keep you close to me we may just get through the rest of your story together. Despite how small you are, I'm the one that needs you to save me. This is craziness, but this is the way you chose to do it. Who can understand such mysteries?

I'm amazed that you can fall asleep in my guilty arms. Maybe you're so quiet and peaceful because even now you know you'll make it all right. Oh, Lord. Who can understand such mysteries? It's mind blowing enough to think that you are here: God as a baby, born in the humility of a barn, resting in my arms, my ragged heartbeat sounding in your tiny ear. And you will not forget me.

Amazing grace.

Sleep in heavenly peace, Lord Jesus. And welcome. I'm glad you're here.

Amen

... this beautiful Christmas prayer comes from Beliefnet.


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Joy to the World


Oh God of All,

Everything on this earth is yours, and all declare your glory.

And heaven and nature sing.
And heaven and nature sing.

We come before you today with the desire for your joy to penetrate our heart.

Repeat the sounding joy.
Repeat the sounding joy.

We praise you that one day you will wipe every tear from our eyes, and sin will no more reign in our hearts.

Far as the curse is found.
Far as the curse is found.

We thank you for the day when the nations will all be ruled by you. Help us to look forward to this time when the wonders of your power and grace will be known through this earth.

And wonders of his love
And wonders of his love.

Let them praise the name of the LORD,
for his name alone is exalted;
his splendor is above the earth and the heavens. (Psalm 148:13)

Amen

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THE WISEMEN

Image result for the wise men following the star



 Matthew 2:9-12  "After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was.  When they saw the star, they were overjoyed.  On coming into the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him.  Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh.  And having been warned in a dream no to go back to Herod, they returned to their country another route."

Dear Lord, You were protecting you son in every way.  Wisemen journeyed long and hard to follow the star of promise to come and worship the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.  To bring him costly treasures from afar.  And they had ears to hear when they had the dream, and hearts to obey and travel home a different route.  What conversations they must have had as they traveled back to their country.  You came for the Lost...those of lowest estate, and Kings from a far country.  You came for me.  I bow in worship today to my Savior, my Lord, the King of Kings.  I love You.   Amen.





Amen

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Incarnation



John 1:1 (NLT)
  In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.

John 1:14 (NLT)
  So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.

Luke 2:11 (NLT)
 The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!

Dear Lord Jesus how great is your love for us! That you would become like us, as the Apostle Paul wrote: “…. Christ Jesus…. 6 Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, 7 but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death-- even death on a cross!”  Philippians 2:6 -8 (NIV)  

Thank you Lord Jesus for your humility through which you came to bear the sin of the world. Thank you that through your grace we have peace, through your mercy we have pardon and through your death we have eternal life. What an infinitely precious and priceless gift is ours through faith in you and your extraordinary loving sacrifice for us.

Thank you Lord Jesus that in this joyful, colorful and musical season of celebrating your birth we can truly sing, “Hallelujah What A Savior!!!”

Amen.


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Lord of justice and mercy, why do we worry about evil men? You are with all who trust in Your power and goodness. We wait for You, oh Lord. You are our Light and salvation. No matter how great the danger, our hope and confidence is in You. We are happy in the assurance that comes from Your Word even today. The wicked have no solid hope, but you will help us in the evil day. Our hope is everlasting and secure. You have ordained our every step and will take us into Your glorious presence. You love justice. You are a God of mercy to those who trust in You. We love You Lord. We know You will never abandon us. We look to You for the future of every good hope. Amen 

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Prayers on the Longest Night

As we prepare for Christmas it is always good to remember that this is a very difficult time for many among us. People are, for the first time, celebrating Christmas without their loved ones. So on this day when the night is the longest, I find myself thinking about this meditation (posted below), written in 2001 by Rev. Diane Hendricks. As you read it please think about and pray for those who are hurting so much this season.

Longest Night Meditation

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

Only it's not.

  • Not for everyone.
  • Not when there is an empty chair at the table.
  • Not when your body is ravaged with illness.
  • Not when the depression is too much to bear.
  • Not without her voice joining yours on the Christmas carols.
  • Not when you feel all alone even in a crowd.
  • Not when you are not sure you can even afford the rent or mortgage,
    let alone the presents.
  • Not when they are trying their best to the best of you.
  • Not when another Christmas party means he will come home drunk again.
It's the most wonderful time of the year?

No, it's not.

And trying to smile and say Merry Christmas is more than difficult.

It's pretty near impossible.

C.S. Lewis once wrote:

"No one ever told me that grief felt so much like fear. I am not afraid, but the sensation is like being afraid. The same fluttering in the stomach, the same restlessness, the yawning..."
It's the most wonderful time of the year.

Only it's not.
  • Not after he has died.
  • Not after the doctor gave you the news.
  • Not after they told you they would be downsizing.
  • Not after... you fill in the blank.
  • Not after September 11.
  • Not when there is so much violence and destruction in the world.
In truth, it has never been the most wonderful time of the year. Certainly not in the days surrounding that first Christmas so long ago. The story of the birth of Jesus is not to be told with a jolly voice and a merry ho-ho-ho.
It is the story of a teenage girl, pregnant with a child that is not her husband's.

It is the story of a child born in a dirty animal stall.
It is the story of a family of refugees who had to flee their homeland so that their child would not be killed.
It is the story of one sent into the world in peace who was condemned to death.
It is the story of a light sent to shine in the darkness, which the world snuffed out.
It is the story of God's never-ending, self-giving mercy which was rejected and condemned.
In the great work the Messiah, Handel quotes the prophet Isaiah, proclaiming that Jesus was "despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief." One great theologian reminds us that we cannot come to the manger without acknowledging that it lays in the shadow of the cross.

It is not the most wonderful time of the year.

Only it is! It is:
  • If we forget about the tinsel and the trees.
  • If we forget about the holly jolly tidings.
  • If we forget about the presents and the ornaments and the trappings.
And remember. Remember the story.
  • Mary was alone and afraid.
    But God was with her and exalted her among women.
  • Joseph was disgraced.
    But God revealed in Joseph's cause for disgrace God's plan to save the world.
  • The world was in darkness.
    But God sent the light of life to shine.
  • The lowly were imprisoned.
    But Jesus set them free.
  • The blind wandered aimlessly.
    But Christ gave them eyes to see.
  • The lame were rejected.
    But through the Holy One they were made to leap and dance.
  • The deaf were confined to the silence.
    But the song of life unstopped their ears.
  • The sorrowful grieved.
    But God wipes away our tears.
  • We were alone.
    But in Jesus Christ, Emmanuel, God is with us.
  • The people rejected God.
    But God embraces us.
  • The world crucified Christ.
    But God would not allow that to be the last word, and gave us the sure hope of the resurrection.
It is the most wonderful time of the year, not because you have to be cheery and happy and merry.

But because you don't.

You can have heavy spirits and shattered dreams. Broken hearts and deep wounds.

And still God comes to be with you.
  • To comfort you.
  • To redeem you.
  • To save you.
  • To restore you.
  • To empower you.
  • To strengthen you.
  • To grant you peace.
  • To be raised for you.
  • To hold you in the communion of saints with those whom you have loved and lost.
  • To store your tears in his bottle.
  • To offer you eternal life.
It is the most wonderful time of the year.
For Christ is born.
Love has come.
God is with us!
Thanks be to the Lord our God.


Amen
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Prayer for holy boldness

LORD, in the midst of this beautiful Christmas season, we pray for an anointing upon every believer with a ‘holy boldness’ to proclaim the TRUTH of Your gospel! What an opportunity we have to spread the truth of Christ to all those around us. Fill us with courage and strength and help us to speak  The Scriptures with Faith and bring Hope to a dying world.

“Fear not: for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy.” Luke 2:10

Amen

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Bringing Peace


Our Great and Good Father,

We come before today to praise you, to worship you, to acknowledge how you are all-sufficient. Through every time of heartache, challenge, pain, and hurt... you provide peace. You are the God of great comfort, calming our hearts and giving light in the midst of our dark and deepest gloom. You break away the chains that hold us, keeping us from you.

Calm our hearts, Father, as we resist the business of this season. Help us to rest and find peace in this time in-between now and when you come again. Maye this peace forever comfort and even protect our hearts from being overwhelmed. For you are not a God of chaos, you are the God of peace. You are not a God of discord, but the God of unity. You are not a God of turmoil, but a God of reconciliation.

Then they cried out of the LORD in their trouble,
and he brought them out of their distress.
He stilled the storm to a whisper;
the waves of the sea were hushed.
They were glad when it grew calm,
and he guided them to their desired haven. (Psalm 107: 28-30)

Father, thank you for coming to our aide. For calming the storms inside our hearts. We may not know and even understand how you are working during this time, so we ask you to help us trust in your providential care. 

You sending your Son is the greatest act of peace you've ever given, for he brought peace between us and You. He brought together what we separated, Father. Thank you for bringing peace.

Amen





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RAGS TO RICHES



"And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.  An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them and they were terrified.  But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born  to you; he is Christ the Lord....Suddenly a great company of the heavenly hosts appeared with the angel praising God and saying...."Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests". 
Luke 2:8-14

Shepherds were the lowest on the pay scale.  Living with their animals, smelling like them, wearing stained and dirty clothes far from the lights of the city.  Yet, on this most monumental night, it was the Hosts of Heaven in their royal garments, shining with the Glory of Heaven that appeared to these humble shepherds.  Truly Riches visited the Rags of humanity that night.  The message was for ALL PEOPLE...from the lowly shepherds, to kings on thrones, to YOU and ME.

One day when I said yes to the savior...he took my ragged dirty clothes, and gave me a robe of righteousness.  

Dear Lord, don't ever let us forget how lost we were, and how you looked down and left the glories of heaven to come to earth as a babe, so you could live out Your life, die on the Cross, and save a Lost World.  For all of those that would say yes, You turned our rags to riches.  I love You.  Amen.

Painting ~ googleimages.com





Amen

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A Beautiful Greeting



Father we understand that peace on earth is inextricably connected to your Son. The joyful announcement by the angel clearly presents this glorious truth.  

Luke 2:8-14 (NLT)
     8 That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. 9 Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, 10 but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. 11 The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!
12 And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.” 13 Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”

Thank you Father that through faith in your Son we have the peace of forgiveness, the peace of fellowship with you and each other and one day the peace of being in your eternal presence.

Father I pray for all of our families and friends: “…..may the Lord of peace himself give you his peace at all times and in every situation. The Lord be with you all.” 2 Thessalonians 3:16 (NLT)

In Jesus name, Amen.


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A Song of Praise to our God

O God, you are my God; I earnestly search for you. My soul thirsts for you;
Your unfailing love is better than life itself; how I praise you!
I will praise you as long as I live, lifting up my hands to you in prayer.
I rejoice in You, my Savior, for You have done great things for me.
You satisfy me more than the richest feast. I will praise you with songs of joy.
Because of Your tender mercy, O God, the light from Heaven shines on me. You have given light when I have been in darkness and the shadow of death, You guide me on the path of peace.
Thank You for the joy You have brought to us through the indescribable gift of Jesus.

Psalm 63:1-8; Luke 1

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The God of Hope



Father,

Hope. The sounds resonates in our hearts as we look back on 2017, which has often felt anything but hopeful. Yet in the first week of Advent, hope is our reminder. The words to focus on, as we consider your coming.

You are the God of all hope, who sent his Son to us, to offer the greatest hope this world could ever know. You are the God of this present hope, as we see the way you are continuing to redeem and heal this world. And you are the God of future hope, as we wait and long for the second coming for your Son, when he will return to take his rightful place as the King of this world.

Help us cling to this hope, Father. Help us to push back despair with the hope that is only offered in your son Jesus Christ. May your hope reign in our hearts as we wait and long for your Son's return.

Amen

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First Week of Advent

Almighty God,
Give us grace to cast away the works of darkness,
and put on the armor of light,
now in the time of this mortal life
in which your Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility;
that in the last day,
when he shall come again in his glorious majesty
to judge both the living and the dead,
we may rise to the life immortal;
Through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God,
now and for ever.
Amen
Book of Common Prayer


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ONE SIMPLE YES



Image result for mary the mother of jesus


Luke 1:38 "I am the Lord's servant" Mary answered,  "May it be to me as you have said."   Then the angel left her.

Your plan of redemption was advanced when one simple peasant girl said yes to You ~ a yes that would change the world.  There was no complicated ritual, nor advanced theological training involved.  Just the trusting words, "May it be to me as you have said."  Lord, may it be the same in my life.  Help me to cooperate with Your plan for the world by saying yes to You,  Holy Spirit.  Come upon me so that the life of Christ may be manifested through me to the needy world around me.  I love You.  Amen.


googleimages.com
Maranatha Worship Bible








Amen

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Light in the Darkness


Isaiah 9:2 (NIV)
     “The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.”

Father what greater metaphor could be given to people living in the despair of darkness and the shadow of death than the glory of your Son, who alone gives joy, hope and light to the world.

Jesus said: “I have come as a light to shine in this dark world, so that all who put their trust in me will no longer remain in the dark.” John 12:46 (NLT)

No wonder the announcement to the Shepherds by the Angel was such joyous and glorious news: "10 But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14 "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests." Luke 2:8-14 (NIV)

Father, we join the Apostle Peter in saying: “…..declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” 1 Peter 2:9b (NIV)
Thank you Father for this glorious good news long ago prophesied by Isaiah: “….. Your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has dawned. Isaiah 60:1 (GW)
Amen.   


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Lead Me in Your Truth

Psalm 25:4-7 ESV
Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long.
Remember your mercy, O Lord, and your steadfast love,
for they have been from of old.
Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
according to your steadfast love remember me,
for the sake of your goodness, O Lord!

Soften my heart, Father, as I hear from your Word. Open the eyes of my heart that I can see wonderful things from your Word and know your will.
Engrave it on my heart.
Come, Holy Spirit, as I seek to understand the Truth of your Word. Sanctify me by Your truth.
Help me, Lord, to encounter You, and with renewed conviction and assurance, introduce myself as one of Yours. Help me to apply and walk in the truth of your Word. Amen

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A Simple Prayer for the Pain of Christmas

This season of Christmas surfaces all sorts of emotions. Sometimes we find ourselves grieving a loss or struggling with all sorts of images from Christmas Past.

In these times God can seem so distant and prayers so hard to say. I find that simple prayers can help to communicate our heart. Here is something we can pray.

I am hurting Lord. I am sad and I am struggling.

I offer my pain to you. I lift up my struggles and my sadness.

I confess that you are my friend, that you care about me and you are with me.

I ask you to help me. To comfort me. To bring joy into my life.

I believe in you Lord and trust you to bring me through this season.

I pray in the name of Jesus Christ.

Amen


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A Beautiful Gift

Prayer is our lifeline.

Our refuge.

Our strong tower.

Prayer is our intimate connection with Christ.

It’s where we pour out. Where He pours in.

It’s where love is born in our hearts for our Savior.

Prayer. Earnest prayer.

Where miracles happen. Where healing takes place. Where spirits are tendered and souls are released.

Where hearts are mended and eyes are opened.

Prayer.....the beautiful gift of God for those who love Him.

“The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” (James 5:16) ESV


Amen

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The Lord's Strength


Most gracious and loving Father,

We come before you this morning with praise in our hearts for who you are. For your power, your compassion, your glory, and your strength. Your strength covers our weakness, O Lord, This strength encourages us, inspires us, and makes us fully dependent on you.

Yet Father we still struggle in our sin. We confess to you that our hearts are divided. We make idols out of things and worship what we should not. Our hearts have been hardened by our sin, and from our hearts comes an out powering of sinful ways. We claim your strength over our sin, Father. We claim our weakness in the face of your strength. And we are grateful we can look to you for guidance as we stray, and thankful you see only your Son when you look at us.

From the Valley of Vision Prayers:

Help us to be 
watchful over our ways,
jealous over our tempers,
diligent over our hearts.
When we droop,
revive us, 
When we loiter, 
quicken us, 
When we go astray,
 restore us. 
Possess us with more of that faith 
which is the principle of all vital godliness.

Amen

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Christ the King

Almighty and everlasting God,
whose will it is to restore all things in your well-beloved Son,
the King of kings and Lord of lords:
Mercifully grant that the peoples of the earth,
divided and enslaved by sin,
may be freed and brought together under his most gracious rule;
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God,
now and for ever.
Amen
Book of Common Prayer

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AN OVERFLOW OF WORSHIP

 

Colossians  4:5-6  "Be wise in the way you act towards outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.  Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone."

"Out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks".  O Lord, may my heart overflow with worship.  May my conversation be a feast of life.  May Christ be the bread and Your Spirit the wine, may praise be the fruit and grace the salt, may love be the table and wisdom the candle.  May I always be prepared to feed anyone who hungers for the hope that I have in Christ.  I love you.  Amen.


 Maranatha Worship Bible
googleimages.com

Amen

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Post-Thanksgiving Day


1 Chronicles 23:30 (NLT)
    “….each morning and evening they stood before the LORD to sing songs of thanks and praise to him.”
Father I pray as the sun rises and sets, that each day, will be bracketed with thanksgiving. The words from the song: “Bless the Lord Oh My Soul” expresses the desire my heart:

The sun comes up
It's a new day dawning
It's time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass
And whatever lies before me
Let me be singing
When the evening comes
Bless the Lord oh my soul
Oh my soul
Worship His Holy name
Sing like never before
Oh my soul
I'll worship Your Holy name
As the Psalmist says so well:

“It is good to give thanks to the LORD, to sing praises to the Most High. 2 It is good to proclaim your unfailing love in the morning, your faithfulness in the evening,” Psalm 92:1-2 (NLT) 
Thank you Father for this post-Thanksgiving day and that we can continue to give you thanks and praise every day. “I will praise you every day; yes, I will praise you forever.” Psalm 145:2 (NLT)
Celebrating today in Jesus name. Amen.


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Truth

Truth in our culture these days seems to be becoming more and more relative to most. I am thankful that God has revealed to us His truth in His Word, through His Son Jesus Christ, and His Holy Spirit who guides us into all truth.

Lord God Almighty, You are the God of all truth. Thank You for the Lord Jesus Christ and Your powerful Word. Thank You for revealing that You are truth and You are love. Thank You for showing me what it means to live out the truth and love others. Help me be faithful to study Your Word and know the truth. Keep me alert to wisely patrol the ideas, sermons and teachings I am encountering to be sure they agree with Your Word and glorify Jesus Christ. Lord, give me a heart that deeply cares and keep me connected to a strong community of believers with a solid affection for Your Word. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Krista Williams 
 

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A Thanksgiving Day Prayer

Lord, so often times, as any other day
When we sit down to our meal and pray

We hurry along and make fast the blessing
Thanks, amen. Now please pass the dressing

We're slaves to the old factory overload
We must rush our prayer before the food gets cold

But Lord, I'd like to take a few minute more
To really give thanks to what I'm thankful for

For my family, my health, a nice soft bed
My friends, my freedom, a roof over my head

I'm thankful right now to be surrounded by those
Whose lives touch me more than they'll ever possibly know

Thankful Lord, that You've blessed me beyond measure
Thankful that in my heart lives life's greatest treasure

That You, dear Jesus, reside in that place
And I'm ever so grateful for Your unending grace

So please, heavenly Father, bless this food You've provided
And bless each and every person invited

Amen
...prayer taken from Christian Google prayers

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God is on our side

Most gracious and loving Father,

We come before you today thankful you are the God of peace, the  God of love, the God who fights for us. You are on our side, oh, Lord! What a joy! What a surety! Thank you for being good, kind, generous, just, powerful, and faithful. You are sovereign over all and always present with your people.

As many prepare for the Thanksgiving this week, we acknowledge that there is often much pain and hardship during the holiday season. It can be so easy for us to forget who you are and your love as the things of this world overwhelm us. Father, we pray over the challenges of difficult family dynamics, over loneliness and despair. Please cover these with your peace, that passes all understanding. 

Help us to love these family members who hurt us, and to be kind to ourselves as we are hurt by them. 

O God, be not far from me;
    O my God, make haste to help me!
13 May my accusers be put to shame and consumed;
    with scorn and disgrace may they be covered
    who seek my hurt.
14 But I will hope continually
    and will praise you yet more and more.
15 My mouth will tell of your righteous acts,
    of your deeds of salvation all the day,
    for their number is past my knowledge.
16 With the mighty deeds of the Lord God I will come;
    I will remind them of your righteousness, yours alone.
 (Psalm 71: 1-3)


Amen

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It's Your Choice





Mark 8:34 "If people want to follow me, they must give up things they want.  They must be willing even to give up their lives to follow me."

On one side stands the crowd,
Jeering, Bating, Demanding.
On the other stands a peasant,
Swollen lips, Lumpy eye, Lofty promise.
One promises acceptance, the other a cross.
One offers flesh and flash, the other offers faith.
The crowd challenges, "Follow us and fit in,"
Jesus promises, "Follow me and stand out."
They promise to please, God promises to save.
God looks at you and ask, "Which will be your choice?"

Grace for the Moment ~ Max Lucado  (Nov. 18)

Dear Lord sometimes this seems like a hard choice.....but the closer I follow You, and the more I camp in Your WORD, the more I surrender my life completely to You, I want no other choice.  You own me, you paid the ultimate price for my salvation...what less can I do... I will follow You.  I love You, Amen.






Amen

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Name Them One by One


Deuteronomy 16:10 (NLT)

     Then celebrate the Festival of Harvest to honor the LORD your God. Bring him a voluntary offering in proportion to the blessings you have received from him.

Father it is always good for us to celebrate your generosity in response to the blessings we have received from you. For this reason Thanksgiving Day is such a special time of the year. A time to remember, a time to rejoice and a time renew our commitment to you and to share with others all you have done for us.

Father may we call to mind the admonition and encouragement of the Scripture: “Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.” Philippians 4:6 (NLT)

Thank you Father for all you have done. Thank you for your thoughtfulness, kindness, patience, goodness, forgiveness, spiritual and material blessings.  In reality, Father, more than we could ever express, your blessings are beyond number. As the Psalmist so apply said: “17 How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! 18 I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!” Psalm 139:17-18 (NLT)

Thank you Father, in Jesus name, for all you have done! Amen.


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Hope in Trials

Thank You, Lord, for the hope we have in You. We can endure the trials of today because we know the truth of tomorrow. You are the Giver and Sustainer of life. All sorrow will one day be erased. All tears will one day be replaced. There will be joy and laughter and singing. And it's all because of You. Help me to remember this truth when the weight of today feels like too much. Help me to become a person of prayer and person of praise, because of everything You have already done. In Jesus' name, Amen

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A Prayer for remaining Grateful when Life is Messy

Give thanks in all circumstances;
for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thess. 5:18 (ESV)

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isa. 41:10 (ESV)

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Rom. 8:28 (NIV)



Dear heavenly Father, there are some days when it’s good (and important) to remember that you call us to offer thanks in, not for, all circumstances. The gospel isn’t about magic thinking or make-believe-living, spiritual anesthesia or circumstantial amnesia. In fact, the gospel is the only place in the universe where we don’t have to pretend about anything. That’s one of the many reasons we love you, and ARE grateful to be your children.

Father, strengthen, help, and uphold us with your righteous right hand, in stories that are recipes for dismay.

For those of us for whom Thanksgiving Day will highlight the brokenness of our family system — grant us grace and freedom to love well in the chaos.

For those of us bearing the weight of health concerns for ourselves, or those we love — grant us grace, peace, and the assurance of your nearness.

For those of us weighed down by some combination of the 6 o’clock news, financial pressures, vocational issues, and relational heartache — grant us grace, and a vision of the occupied throne of heaven.

For those of us who hear the condemning whispers of Satan louder than the consoling voice of Jesus — grant us grace, and fresh assurance that nothing can separate us from your love — that Jesus plus nothing is our righteousness, period.

Father, in these, and other scenarios of difficult circumstances, reassure us that you are very much at work — for your glory and our good. For you have called us — you have subpoenaed us to an eternal life of intimacy with yourself.

You want us, you have us, and you love us. Hallelujah, now and forever we are yours. So very Amen we pray, in Jesus’ merciful and mighty name.

... a prayer from Scotty Smith at The Gospel Coalition.

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