A Prayer Centered Life

The phrase a prayer centered life kept coming up in my spirit this morning. I wasn’t sure what God was going to show me with this but knew this was going to be something for me. As I have mentioned in previous post, this year I am praying and asking God to reveal areas in my life that are keeping me from moving forward or moving to the next level in my relationship with God. I immediately became defensive thinking God I pray every day and multiple times a day, so how can I not have a prayer centered life. As I sat there quietly and meditated on this phrase, I began to see a picture of what this looks like. Once again God was right, and my life was not as prayer centered as I had thought.

Christians that have a prayer centered life are the Christians when we are sick or in need that we want to pray for us. You can feel the power in their prayer and their closeness to God shines through when they pray. They may appear quite and reserved but something happens when they pray. In times of crisis these Christians appear very calm and are not easily shaken. Their life is not perfect, and they go through the same trials that we all do, but they don’t appear to be anxious or worried in the least. They are happy and joyous people and there is a peacefulness that flows from them. Just being in their presence can ease your tensions without them ever saying a word. Their faith is strong because of their personal relationship with God. They know that all things work together for their good. They may not understand why things work out the way they do sometimes, but they know God is in control and that his thoughts are higher than ours. There is a peace about them because they don’t try to manipulate or change things they have given to God. They give it to God and forget it.

This person doesn’t just pray when they have a spare moment, but they have dedicated prayer time each day. Prayer and their time with God is a top priority every day to them. They look forward to their one on one time with God and are excited about what he might reveal to them each day. They meditate on his Word and open their minds to allow him full access. They talk to God like he is a true friend and they share all aspects of their life with him. They wait and allow God time to speak to them. They realize it is not a one-sided conversation and they listen for God to speak. It hit me in that moment this is the area that I am failing in. I don’t spend time listening and waiting for God to answer. I get in such a hurry that I am missing his responses to my prayers. I make it a one-sided conversation the majority of the time.

I am going to start today giving God time to answer me. I am going to share my prayer time with God and not make it a one-sided conversation.

Thank you for reading and have a great day in Jesus Christ!!
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When We Fail God

As Christians we all make mistakes or bad choices from time to time. The minute we sin the Holy Spirit convicts us immediately. We begin to feel guilt and sadness from this because we know we failed God. We ask God to forgive us and because of His grace and mercy, He does. I believe it is how we handle these failures that make or break our walk with God. Typically, we fall into 3 categories when it comes to sin in our Christian life.

  1. We Wallow
  2. We Quit
  3. We Persevere

Christians that wallow tend to try and justify their sin. They say, “It’s not really that bad, so and so does worse things than me.” They will also say things like “the bible doesn’t specifically say I can’t do this.” They are very defensive about this sin because they are not ready to give it up. They don’t want to pray or fast for deliverance from this sin, so they become stuck in their walk with Jesus. They want to lay there and wallow in it.

Christians who quit are looking for the easy way out. They don’t really commit to anything and typically dip out on things when it gets too hard. They tend to think being a Christian means everything in their life will be easy. They will come to a dead stop in their walk with Jesus just to keep from dealing with their sins. They focus on the parts of the Bible that they like and avoid the rest.

Christians who persevere are the ones who put God above everyone including themselves. Their walk with Jesus is so important to them that when they fail Him, they actually mourn over the sin that remains in them. They pray and fast for deliverance no matter how big or small it is, as they know sin is sin in the eyes of God. They have true remorse and repent wholeheartedly to God. They want to continue to move forward in their walk with God and they are not willing to let anything stop them. They don’t dwell on their sin, once God has forgiven them they move on. They pray for strength and meditate on his Word so when the next test comes along, they can pass it. They want to glorify God not bring him shame or disappointment.

If we are honest with ourselves, I think we are made up of all three from time to time. There may be things, habits, or thoughts that we wallow in because we are not ready to give them up. We feel that nudge from the Holy Spirit, but we ignore it because we enjoy it. We may have convinced ourselves for the moment that it is not wrong, and we are in denial. The problem is this sin you are wallowing in is keeping you from moving forward in God. Sometimes it is hard to be a Christian and maybe you want to take the easy way out, but you will only regret it. Sometimes we have to look at the ugliness inside of us and deal with it. It is not fun or enjoyable, but it is the only way to get rid of it. Nowhere in the Bible does it say our journey would be easy, it just says He would be with us and take care of us. To persevere in our walk with God should be our goal. This takes discipline, commitment, and dedication on a daily basis to achieve. I believe we go through cycles of perseverance and then we hit a road block that causes us to wallow or quit for a moment.

Imagine where we would be in Christ today if we just persevered and didn’t let things hold us up. I pray today for more perseverance in my walk with God. I pray for the strength to move forward and not to wallow or quit in any area of my life.

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!
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Making Plans With God

There are so many occasions that we make plans for in advance. For our children or grandchildren’s birthdays we begin to make plans weeks or months in advance. We try to make sure we have the perfect gift and the perfect party. We do everything humanly possible to make that day perfect for them. Maybe it’s not a birthday party you are planning but a wedding, baby shower, or vacation. Whatever you are planning you put time and thought into. You get excited and maybe even a little nervous with anticipation of the big day. What if we made plans with God in the same way? Would our lives be different? Would we find more Joy and Peace? Would our friends, family, and co-workers see us differently? Would our community, country, or the world benefit from this? Would Satan and our enemies fear us because of the God that is within us?

What if we planned a day in advance that we were going to spend in prayer? We updated our prayer journals and notated new prayer request. We wrote down things we just wanted to talk to God about. We selected the perfect place for this prayer and prepared it to be cozy and quiet, so we could hear God when he spoke to us. Maybe we prepared food in advance, so we would have our favorite snacks or maybe you plan to fast for the day. Leading up to this day you spend time in the Word preparing yourself for this day of prayer. You become excited and maybe nervous with anticipation at the breakthroughs you know are coming on this day.

What if we started planning for church on Monday instead of waiting until Saturday night to decide if we were even going to go? You started praying for your pastor and worship team on Monday to be blessed and filled with the Holy Spirit all week. You prayed for God to speak to them and lead them on Sunday to invite Him into our place of worship. What if you prayed for yourself and church family all week to be ready to receive the Holy Ghost on Sunday and dwell in his presence for a while? What if we prayed for sinners to be saved every day of the week and not just in our church but in churches around the world? I believe if we did this we would become so excited about going to church that we would be inviting everyone knew and didn’t know to church. We would want everyone to just come and see what God is going to do today.  We would be filled with anticipation for every service.

What if we planned outreaches in our community or bible studies with friends and family? What if we had brainstorming parties on how to get the Word out into our communities? What if we worked with other churches in our community to build God’s kingdom not just our church or denomination? The Word says in Luke to go out into the highways and hedges and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled. God’s house is made up of many church buildings and congregations not just yours.

I believe our lives would be different because we would be so focused on God and fulfilling his purpose. We would be busy working to glorify God that we wouldn’t have time to gossip about others. We would be praying for others and their situations instead of telling others about their problems. We would be so spiritually filled that when we prayed for someone we would actually believe God would answer that prayer and not just hope that he would. Our faith would be so strong that we wouldn’t worry about our finances, our jobs, or our families because we would know God has us in the palm of his hand and he will take care of us. I believe we would have His joy and peace abundantly in our lives. I believe our friends, family, and co-workers would see a change in us not only spiritually but physically. I believe we would smile more and have a glow about us because we were truly trusting God. I believe we would stand taller and be more confident in our decisions because we would know they were God driven. I believe we would be so filled with love and compassion for those in need in our communities that we would do whatever we could to help.

Unfortunately, Satan is always going to look for cracks that he can slither in through but when you are full of the Holy Spirit you will bind him in the name of Jesus and send him back to Hell where he belongs. Satan has already been defeated by our God and is still no match for our God today. Satan can only get to us if we allow it. We must recognize his attacks and declare it null and void in the name of Jesus immediately.

Let’s start making plans to spend time with God today. Let’s get excited again about who our God is and what he is capable of.

Thank you for reading and I hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!
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Spiritual Hands

We all understand the importance of our physical hands. We use them to dress ourselves, feed ourselves, and even to protect ourselves. We earn a living and show affection to our family with our physical hands. I began to think do we have spiritual hands and if so, are they as important as our physical hands? I believe the answer is yes.
Think for a moment of everything you do with your hands each day. Now imagine that you were doing each of those things for God and his purpose. You fed yourself for the strength to carry out His task for you today. You dressed yourself to not only be warm but ready to move when He told you to go. You protected yourself from Satan and the flesh by holding the Word of God and shaking it in Satan’s face. You went to work to not only provide for your family but to help others in need and pay your tithes. It came to me that the physical and spiritual hand are all in one. What makes the difference is how you use them.
Our spiritual hands lifted toward heaven show our total submission or surrender to God. Just as a child lifts their hands to be carried by their parent we lift our hands to be carried by Jesus in our time of need. Our spiritual hands also show joy and happiness with the clapping of hands or waving of the hands. We rejoice in the victories of Jesus Christ with our spiritual hands. We fold them quietly in honor of our Lord and Savior.
Our spiritual hands show love and compassion to others with a handshake or a pat on the back. Our spiritual hands work for the glory of God in our church, community, and all over the world. Our spiritual hands build things up for the kingdom of God, they don’t tear down or destroy what someone else has built. They join with others to build the kingdom as they know all Christians make up the body of Christ. Spiritual hands work solely for God and there is no me, myself, or I involved. They are not worried about a denomination, church name, or even what someone else is doing. Their only focus is on what they can do for God today. Spiritual hands do not create borders or boundaries to limit themselves but know that God is God to all and there are no limits are boundaries when it comes to God.
I believe as Christians we all have spiritual hands, but we limit what they can do out of fear, jealousy, and even hate. Today, let’s pray for God to give us the strength to use our spiritual hands to build his kingdom. Let’s ask God to remove any fear, jealousy, hate or any other feeling that is holding us back. Our purpose is to serve Him and to do that we may not need physical hands but we do need spiritual hands.
Thank you for reading and I hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!
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Nothing Is Impossible

As Christians we sometimes limit ourselves in the natural and spiritually based on the boundaries we set in our minds. The Bible says all things are possible through Christ, but do we really live this? Notice I didn’t say believe this but live this. The answer for most of us is no we do not live it. We believe all things are possible through Christ. We just believe it for other people. We believe it is true for our Pastors, Deacons, Missionaries, and other Christians but not for us personally.
We pray for guidance from God and say Lord lead me where you want me to go but out of fear we make excuses as to why we can’t go. We want to stay in our comfort zones and as long as God leads us inside of that we will follow. To grow us God is going to take us out of our comfort zones. He is going to put us in situations that are scary or uncomfortable, just to see if we will step up and follow him. Many of us fail this test because we have convinced ourselves we can’t. We are looking at it through our physical eyes and not our spiritual eyes. We believe it but are not living it.
We have let Satan, the world, and our flesh hold us back with doubt and fear. Jesus Christ has already overcome Satan, the world, and the flesh so why do we continue to let these things hold us back? We try to use human logic to rationalize what God is leading us to do. The Word says his thoughts are higher than our thoughts. Our minds cannot even comprehend what God can do. We read it in his Word every day how great, powerful, and mighty He is yet we still have doubt that is fueled by fear. The only way to break the bondage fear has over us is to step out in faith. Memorize and repeat God’s Word to yourself when you are scared and take that first step.
Today if God is leading you to do something or move in a direction that scares you, follow him. Pray for the courage and strength to not only believe all things are possible but to live it. I believe God is searching for Christians who are willing to live it. He is searching for Christians who will stand on his Word and say I am not afraid for my God is my protector. He is searching for Christians, who say Lord, I don’t know where you are taking me, but I am willing to go. He is searching for Christians that in their time of fear, doubt, or unbelief that will cry out to him prayer for help. God didn’t create us to be independent but to be dependent on him.
God has no boundaries and there is nothing in this world that can stop what God has put into motion. God will protect you, fight for you, raise you up, and place you on solid ground. He tells us not to fear for he is with us. He will never leave us nor forsake us. God says we are his and nothing can pluck us out of his hands. He says all things work together for our good.
Thank you for reading and I hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!
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Spiritual Hills

I believe our walk with Jesus is like a mountainous terrain. It is filled with valleys we must go through and hills we must climb to get out of the valleys. We always talk about the valleys and the lows that we feel but I want to focus on the hills today. The hills take endurance and commitment to climb. If you have ever hiked in the mountains you know the hills can be steep and intimidating when you are standing at the bottom of it. You begin to climb because you want to see what is at the top of this hill. You are trying to get to the overlook or look out at the top of the hill. At the overlook you can look out over the valleys below and you can look up and see the top of the mountain. You can see how far you have come and how far you still must go if you intend on reaching the top of the mountain. Some people get to the overlook and that is as far as they go. They are content at that level or they do not have the endurance to continue to climb. Others rest for a moment and replenish their bodies with water and a snack to continue the journey ahead. They enjoy the view, but this is not their final destination. They want to go higher and while they know the journey is going to be tough, they know the pay off will be worth it.

In a spiritual sense I believe we go through valleys and hills throughout our walk with Jesus Christ. I believe the hills are hard and we must have endurance and commitment to get to the overlook in our spiritual life. I believe the overlook allows us to look back over what we have been through and allows us to see the mountain top. As Christians we can continue to grow in our faith, replenish or renew ourselves at the overlook to continue on the journey ahead. I don’t believe we ever reach the mountain top in this life, I believe we continue to grow in Christ as long as we live and therefore we continue to climb. At the overlook we can see the people that are ahead of us and the people that are behind us. The people ahead of us should be our encouragement to continue as we should be the encouragement for the people behind us to continue. I believe at each overlook there are people who have decided they are content where they are, and they don’t continue to climb. I believe there are people there that want to climb higher but are afraid or know they don’t have the endurance to continue. Then there are those who know this is only a pit stop for them. They are determined to get to the next overlook because they know the view at the next overlook is even greater.
These spiritual hills to each overlook are hard. You get tired and weak and you may have to stop and rest along the way. You get dry spiritually during these climbs. You are climbing by faith and not sight at times because the next overlook is not in sight, but you know it is coming. Your muscles begin to shake or cramp up and you may not feel that you have the endurance to continue but prayer becomes your endurance. The Bible says God is our refuge and our strength. A very present help in trouble. All we have to do is cry out to him. Satan and the flesh are the resistance you feel as you climb. They become like weights around your ankles trying to pull you back or keep you from moving forward, but God can remove these weights. When we feel we can’t continue we need to dig into his Word let God encourage you and cheer you on to the next overlook. I believe God rejoices every time we advance to the next level. I believe like any proud parent he says, “that’s my child, look at him or her go.” I believe when we make it to that overlook that He replenishes us by pouring the Holy Spirit out on us. I believe he refuels us with his Word. He lets us rest in him while he restores us. He prepares us for the next hill if we are willing to climb it for him.

I encourage you today to continue to climb each hill to the next overview in your walk with Jesus Christ. It is going to be tough at times and you may feel that you are not going to make it but remember he will never leave you or forsake you. He is right there with you and all you have to do is cry out to him for the endurance to continue. Let’s keep climbing and moving forward in God. The reward is going to be so great that it is worth the pain you are feeling now.

Thank you for reading and I hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!
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The Forgotten

As human beings we can forget things or even people from time to time. Sometimes we can’t recall someone’s name or maybe we don’t remember meeting them at all. We have totally forgotten them. I went to a nursing home today as a guest of the ministry that is being done there. I watched as the room filled up with people in wheelchairs with various levels of disabilities. They all smiled and greeted us and knew they were there to hear the Word of God. They were happy and excited to be there. As I looked around this room I began to wonder how many of them have been forgotten by family or friends or how many no longer have any living relatives to visit them. My heart began to break for them thinking this is where life has brought them. I began to wonder what their lives were like when they were younger. What were their dreams, accomplishments or goals in their life? What all had they seen or been through in their lives?
I watched quietly as the old hymns started to play and they began to sing and clap their hands. A couple of them raised their hands in worship and some cried from being touched by the Holy Spirit. I realized in that moment that they may have been forgotten by the world, but they knew Jesus had not forgotten them and they were worshipping him. They knew he loved them and some of them told us how God had blessed them throughout their lives. They listened to every word of the message that was given to them as they were hungry for the Word of God. They were so thankful and appreciative for everything that was done for them.
I left there feeling very humbled. I thought about all the times I didn’t give my praise and worship 100% because I was tired or had other things going on in my mind. Some of these people were physically incapable of lifting their hands toward heaven but they did it to the best of their ability. They weren’t complaining or grumbling about their ailments or problems they were just rejoicing in his presence. I wondered to myself if I were in their shoes would I be strong enough in my faith to still worship and praise God the way they did today.
Isaiah 46:4 Even to your old age, I am He, And even to gray hairs I will carry you! This verse came to mind as I began to write this morning. I realized that God didn’t just start carrying them when they were old, but he has carried them from when they were young until their hair turned gray. They know Him, and they have a deep-rooted relationship with Him. Throughout their lives I am sure God has seen them through good and bad-times but her never forgot them. To this day they know the one to whom they belong, and they still serve him to this day. You see, we went there today to be a blessing to them and instead they were a blessing and inspiration to us.
Thank you for reading this and I hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!
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Your To Do List And God

Time can be a Christians worst enemy. We all feel there is not enough time in the day to get everything done. Our time each day is consumed with work, family, friends, taking care of our homes and the list goes on. We all have a physical or mental “To Do List” that never gets completed. Each day we continue to add new items that need to be done, but where does God fit into our daily “To Do List”? The truth is God tends to be the first thing cut from our list if he ever made it on our list. We say things like God will understand because he knows how busy I am. I haven’t found anywhere in the Bible where God said just get to me when you can.
We wonder why we stay so stressed, overwhelmed, irritable, edgy, negative, and all the other adjectives we use to describe our emotional or mental state when we have removed God from our daily life. God is the God of peace and He brings peace to our lives. All the emotions listed come when we are not spending quality time with God. God puts everything into perspective in our lives. God will help us eliminate the unnecessary things from our lives and remind of us what is important. The more time you spend with God the stronger your faith is, so you worry less about the difficulties that come up in your life. You know that God will do what his Word says, and he will take care of you. We may go through storms, but we know God will not let us be defeated. His Word says all things work together for our good.
Philippians 4: 6-7 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God: and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Jesus Christ.
As I read this verse I was thinking if we pray about everything, give thanks for everything, and make our request known to God all these require time with God. When we do these things the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Jesus Christ. In Proverbs he tells us to guard or keep your heart will all diligence for out of it springs the issues of life. In Colossians He tells us to set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. When you are not spending time with God your heart and mind can begin to entertain the things of the world and these things pull you further away from God. To keep our hearts and minds on him we must spend time with him.
It saddens me to think that our Creator, and the Creator of time gets the least amount of our time. The one who sent His only son, Jesus Christ, to die for each and every one of us is the first thing removed or replaced on our “To Do List.” How are we supposed to show the lost the importance of Jesus Christ when we don’t even give Him the time of day ourselves? How are we supposed to witness or help lead someone to Jesus Christ when we don’t spend enough time in the Bible to be able to answer any of their questions. Let’s make a choice today to spend more time with God each day.

Thank you for reading and hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!

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Fearlessly Full Of Faith

Sometimes as Christians we may feel defeated. We may feel that everything and everyone is against us, but nothing could be further from the truth. We forget sometimes who we serve. Our God is the Mighty One, His name is above all names, He is the alpha and omega, He is all knowing and powerful. He is our Savior and He will not be defeated. His Word says we cannot be plucked out of His hand and that He will fight for us. At times we may get knocked down, battered, and bruised. We may feel discouraged and alone but when we get to a place that we can’t go any further, God will step in and rescue you. All we have to do is cry out to him. Isaiah 58:9 says Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; You shall cry, and He will say, Here I am. Just reading that gets me excited to know that I am that important to him. Just to know that when I am hurting or scared that all I need to do is cry out to him and he will say, “Here I am.” Do you realize how powerful that is? The problem is sometimes instead of crying out to God for help, we want to dwell in self-doubt and self-pity. We not only accept defeat we become content with defeat.

If we are moving in sync with God and we are following him and staying tucked in next to him. His Word says no weapon formed against us shall prosper. But to do this we have to be “fearlessly full of faith.” See, most of time we have “fear filled faith” and God doesn’t want that. We don’t show faith until we are desperate, then we call on God as a last resort. God wants us to be fearlessly full of faith. He wants us to call on him first and know that he is going to take care of the issue before we even ask. His Word says He hears us and knows our needs before we even finish speaking. However, to be fearlessly full of faith you must have deep roots in God. If you are not spending time in the Word and with God growing your relationship with Him, you will never be fearlessly full of faith. Isaiah 43:1 says Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine. We forget sometimes to whom we belong and the power that comes with that. I saw a post that said the phrase Do Not Fear is in the bible 365 times. Do you think that it is a coincidence that this phrase is in the bible 365 times and that there are 365 days in a year? No, he wants us to know daily that we should not fear because he is with us.

Hebrews chapter 11 says But without faith it is impossible to please him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. As Christians we know who God is and we believe God is who He says He is. I believe where we lack in faith is believing He can and will take care of all of our problems. We say with our mouths that we have this type faith, but our actions don’t support that. If we truly were fearlessly full of faith, we would take all our needs and issues to him and leave them because we would know he is going to take care of them. We wouldn’t fret and worry over every problem in our life, if we had this type of faith. God doesn’t just work on your spiritual issues, but he can and will work on your financial issues, your employment issues, or your family issues. God loves all of you and he wants you to depend on him in all aspects of your life. If you are not letting God lead you in every aspect of your day to day life, then you are not fearlessly full of faith.

I am striving to become fearlessly full of faith. I want to be so strong in God that my faith is untouchable. This doesn’t mean I wouldn’t be attacked or persecuted, but I wouldn’t let it defeat me. I would be able to give it to God immediately and continue his work without missing a beat. When pain and suffering attacked me or my family, my faith would not be wounded. When I am confused or don’t understand why things are happening my faith would be steadfast. No matter what the World or Satan threw at me I would remain dedicated to my faith and to glorifying God.
Thank you for reading and I hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!
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