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Prayer, Plain and Simple

Prayer, Plain and Simple

A Prayer for Goal-Setting

posted by Mark and Jill

Our goal is to please him. (2 Corinthians 5:9)

The Apostle Paul’s goal in life was to live each moment to please God. We are urged to follow his example. What pleases God? Here are a few Scriptures that help us know the objectives of this goal:

Finally, dear brothers and sisters, we urge you in the name of the Lord Jesus to live in a way that pleases God, as we have taught you.  1 Thes. 4:1

Here Paul goes on to talk about three aspects of living to please God:

1. Pleasing God through living a life committed to sexual purity. (This is for our ultimate, absolute blessing!)

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2. Paul urges us to love one another and continually grow in our ability to walk in love. (This takes practice!)

3. Then Paul recommends a quiet, peaceful life – one in which we mind our own business. (This isn’t easy, but God doesn’t give us impossible directives!)

These three objectives will help us create lives that please God. But there’s more…

For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we eat or drink, but of living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. If you serve Christ with this attitude, you will please God, and others will approve of you, too. Romans 14:17,18

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1. Here, our mentor Paul instructs us to live a life of goodness. I suppose it depends on your definition of what “good” means. Paul used a Greek word that denotes integrity. So our goal can be just that. Living a life of integrity in all our dealings.

2. We are encouraged to live peaceful lives. To keep the peace in our relationships as much as possible, to think peaceful thoughts, and to promote peace within our souls and in every relationship.

3. Joy is a hallmark of the Kingdom, and should be reflected in our lives daily. (Smile!)

“And it is impossible to please God without faith. ” Hebrews 11:6 

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Having faith and trust in God is one way to please Him. In fact without it we are guaranteed to not please Him. How do you feel when someone you love doesn’t trust you? It’s heart-breaking. Let’s put our complete trust in the God who will never let us down. And let’s pray to make that our goal.

Father,

I am reinstating my life-long and number one bucket-list goal: to bring you pleasure by the way I live my life, by the thoughts I dwell on, by the words I utter, and by the relationships I foster. I can’t do it without the transforming power of your Holy Spirit, so please refine my soul. Make me more and more like you.

In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

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A Prayer to See From God’s POV

posted by Mark and Jill

So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever. (2 Corinthians 4:18)

I have seen you in your sanctuary and gazed upon your power and glory. (Psalm 63:2)

It’s so easy to look at the problem and not the solution. It’s terribly easy to hyperfocus on the trial, whether real or imaginary. What’s not so easy is to rely on our faith and reject what our senses tell us instead of viewing our issues through God’s point of view – through His great love, mighty power, and promises that never fail. Let’s pray to get our eyesight fixed. Fixed on Him…

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Father,

I choose to fix my eyes on You, my Great Deliverer. Forgive me for fixating on the problems that intimidate me. Your perspective is Real; I see only through the tiniest knothole. So, I chose to turn my gaze from the problem that troubles my soul to the Solution. I choose to look into your Word, find the promise that sustains me, and meditate on it until Your Truth becomes a part of my very being. Transform my mind, my heart, my soul, and fix my gaze on You. Then I will walk by faith and not by sight. 

In Jesus’ Name Amen

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Learning To Love Yourself

posted by Mark and Jill

To acquire wisdom is to love yourself.
Proverbs 19:8

Loving and forgiving others is a skill that few of us fully perfect. Loving and forgiving oneself is no less of a challenge. Reading in Proverbs today, this Scripture stood out as though I have never run across it before. (I love that about the Word of God – it is alive and active. I can chase it down and never catch it, drink it down and never drain it to the dregs.)  It contains a profound secret: a secret to loving yourself.  Simply put, it is this: learning – growing in our understanding, listening to, reading, and searching for wisdom, polishing our skills and honing our efforts. As we make these investments in our own minds and souls, we are giving ourselves a gracious gift.

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Father,

Thank you for the truth of your Word.

Help me, please, to love myself as you have instructed me.

Give me grace to hunger for wisdom,

to look for it in everyday life,

to find the nugget of wisdom in every conversation,

to simply be curious,

to ask the right questions,

to desire the health and growth of my soul,

and to do the hard, tedious work of acquiring skill. 

Amen. 

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A Prayer to Remember The Fallen

posted by Mark and Jill

There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” John 15:13

“The Lord cares deeply
when his loved ones die.” Psalm 116:15

“…That from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion — that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain — that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.” ~Abraham Lincoln, Gettysberg 

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My brother is a veteran of the Vietnam War. He came back with a burden for his fallen comrads that hasn’t left him for a day these past fifty years. Let’s pray for the families and friends of those who gave the “last measure of their devotion.”

Father,

We ask that your love and strength would comfort those who mourn today over those who gave their lives for this nation. We pray that their memory would flood their loved ones with joy. We thank you for these men and women who were willing to lay down their lives for their country. May their courage embolden us to live for Truth and to make this world a better place for those who come after us. We ask for Your grace to be upon all veterans today who remember with sorrow their fallen comrads. Please give them hope through your love. 

Amen

Previous Posts

A Prayer for Goal-Setting
Our goal is to please him. (2 Corinthians 5:9) The Apostle Paul's goal in life was to live each moment to please God. We are urged to follow his example. What pleases God? Here are a few Scriptures that help us know the objectives of this ...

posted 2:00:24pm May. 30, 2015 | read full post »

A Prayer to See From God's POV
So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever. (2 Corinthians 4:18) I have seen you in your ...

posted 2:05:26pm May. 29, 2015 | read full post »

Learning To Love Yourself
To acquire wisdom is to love yourself. Proverbs 19:8 Loving and forgiving others is a skill that few of us fully perfect. Loving and forgiving oneself is no less of a challenge. Reading in Proverbs today, this Scripture stood out as though I ...

posted 2:49:01pm May. 27, 2015 | read full post »

A Prayer to Remember The Fallen
There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends." John 15:13 "The Lord cares deeply when his loved ones die." Psalm 116:15 "...That from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they ...

posted 12:12:34pm May. 25, 2015 | read full post »

A Prayer for Victims of PTSD
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you. (Psalm 32:8) The Lord is well aware of our need for compassionate eye contact. Looking into the eyes of a fearless person has power to ...

posted 12:44:13pm May. 21, 2015 | read full post »

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