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Prayer, Plain and Simple

Prayer, Plain and Simple

Jesus Archives

Who I Am in Jesus

posted by Mark and Jill

Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! (2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT) I love the notion of starting over – of God wiping the slate clean and re-designing my life […]

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A Prayer to Find God

posted by Mark and Jill

“Surely the Lord is in this place, and I wasn’t even aware of it! …What an awesome place this is! It is none other than the house of God, the very gateway to heaven!” ~Jacob (Genesis 28:16,17) Jacob’s plans had […]

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I Found My Happiness

posted by Mark and Jill

Make me walk along the path of your commands, for that is where my happiness is found. Psalm 119:35 My favorite part of the The Hobbit is when Gandalf urges the dwarves and Bilbo to stay on the path. He warns them that […]

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If Your Boundaries are in Rubbles, Say, Pray, and Do This

posted by Mark and Jill

“The God of heaven will help us succeed. We, his servants, will start rebuilding this wall. But you have no share, legal right, or historic claim in Jerusalem.”     ~Nehemiah 2:20 If the boundaries of your life are in […]

I Am Being Followed

posted by Mark and Jill

Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me     all the days of my life.  (Psalm 23:8) What follows us is determined by the leadership we follow. If we follow Jesus, our Good Shepherd, we can expect goodness and unfailing love […]

Chopra and Oprah and Jesus

posted by Mark and Jill

“By myself I can do nothing… I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.” ~Jesus (John 5:30) Contrast these words spoken by Jesus with new-age guru Deepak Chopra:  “Know that you are already a complete spiritual being. […]

God is My Life Coach

posted by Mark and Jill

 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:10 God’s masterpiece. This is who we are, and when he created us, […]

Boat-Sinking Blessings

posted by Mark and Jill

There was a man named Jabez who was more honorable than any of his brothers. His mother named him Jabez because his birth had been so painful. He was the one who prayed to the God of Israel, “Oh, that […]

Shepherds and City Folk

posted by Mark and Jill

The Lord is my Shepherd to feed, guide, and shield me, I shall not lack. Psalm 23:1 (Amplified) I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd risks and lays down His own life for the sheep. John 10:11 (Amplified) Bless Israel, […]

Love, Attention Deficit, and Dementia

posted by Mark and Jill

Love… is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it – it pays no attention to a suffered wrong.   1 Corinthians 13:5 (Amplified) Love pays attention to the right things. It […]

A Prayer That Gets Results

posted by Mark and Jill

“See what an incredible quality of love the Father has given, shown, bestowed on us.”  1 John 3:1 Amplified Love never fails, never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end…    1 Corinthians 13:8 Amplified Our love runs […]

50 Shades of GREAT

posted by Mark and Jill

I no longer call you slaves… John 15:15 Sex is God’s idea, and everything He created is good. We recognize the Bible as the authoritative manual for life, including sex. In this Manual, which is the Source of our existence, […]

Jumping into the Stream of God’s Love

posted by Mark and Jill

“We love each other because he loved us first.” 1 John 4:19 Stop whatever you are doing right now and jump into the stream of God’s love. It is a river of giving and receiving love that never ends. Love […]

How Can God Know Us? Search Me!

posted by Mark and Jill

Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.  Psalm 139:23-24.  Nothing hinders God’s love; but I […]

Restoring the Presence of God in our Marriage

posted by Mark and Jill

“It is time to bring back the Ark of our God, for we neglected it…” 1 Chron. 13:3 “The Ark of God remained there in Obed-edom’s house for three months, and the Lord blessed the household of Obed-edom and everything […]

Reconciliation Is God’s Business

posted by Mark and Jill

“For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation.”   2 Corinthians 5:19-20 NLT We are made in God’s image, and we are […]

Enrolling in the School of Communication

posted by Mark and Jill

May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. Psalm 19:14 “I…say only what the Father taught me.” ~Jesus. John 8:28 I am quite certain that it’s […]

Advent Prayer, Day 26: Welcoming the Light

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Christmas Eve “While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child.” Luke 2:6 NRSV   Light of the world,   The people walking in darkness await you. We who are living in […]

Advent Prayer, Day 25: Come Lord Jesus

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney The fourth Wednesday of Advent “The time came for Elizabeth to have her child, and she gave birth to her son; and when her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had lavished on her his […]

Advent Prayer, Day 24: Offering Ourselves as Sacrifice

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Tuesday, the fourth week of Advent “Consequently, when Christ came into the world, he said, ‘Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired, but a body you have prepared for me; in burnt offerings and sin offerings […]

Advent Prayer, Day 23: Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Monday, the fourth week of Advent “As it is written in the prophet Isaiah, “See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way; the voice of one crying in the wilderness; […]

Advent Prayer, Day 22: Keeping Watch for the Lord

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney The fourth Sunday of Advent “And what I am saying to you I say to all: Stay awake! Mark 13:37 (NJB) This fourth Sunday of Advent finds us only days away from the celebration of Jesus’ […]

Advent Prayer, Day 20: Jesus is Family

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Friday, the third week of Advent “He was in the world, and the world came into being through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to what was his own, and his own […]

Advent Prayer, Day 18: Going the Distance

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Wednesday, the third week of Advent “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of the messenger who announces peace, who brings good news, who announces salvation, who says to Zion, your God reigns.” Isaiah 52:7 […]

Advent Prayer, Day 17: Offering Him Our Best Gifts

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Tuesday, the third week of Advent “A star shall come out of Jacob, and a scepter shall rise out of Israel.” Numbers 24:17 (2). “On entering the house they saw the child with Mary his mother; […]

Advent Prayer, Day 16: Sing Unto the Lord

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Monday, the third week of Advent “The Lord, your God, is in your midst, a mighty savior; He will rejoice over you with gladness, and renew you in his love, He will sing joyfully because of […]

Advent Prayer, Day 15: Rejoice!

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney The third Sunday of Advent “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near.” Philippians 4:4 (NRSV)   This Sunday is called “Gaudete” Sunday, […]

Advent Prayer, Day 14: Giving It All Away

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Saturday, the second week of Advent “A certain ruler asked him, ‘Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life? Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but […]

Advent Prayer, Day 13: Coming Out of Darkness

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Friday, the second week of Advent “Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. He came to Jesus by night and said to him, ‘Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher […]

Advent Prayer, Day 12: Being Compassionate

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Thursday, the second week of Advent “On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. […]

Advent Prayer, Day 11: Hard Truths

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Wednesday, the second week of Advent “When he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and […]

Advent Prayer, Day 9: Transform Our Lives

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Monday, the second week of Advent “Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus had also been baptized and was praying, the heaven was opened, and the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily […]

Advent Prayer, Day 8: Searching for Christ

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney The second Sunday of Advent “After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them, and asking questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his answers. When his […]

Advent Prayer, Day 7: Embracing Jesus

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Saturday, the first week of Advent “Now there was a man in Jerusalem named Simeon; this man was righteous and devout, looking forward to the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit rested on Him. It […]

Advent Prayer: Enduring Tribulation

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Friday, the first week of Advent “And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the […]

Advent Prayer: Jesus, Dwell In Us

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney Tuesday, the first week of Advent “This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about. His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together she was found to […]

Advent Prayer: Behold His Coming

posted by nsymmonds

By Claudia Mair Burney The First Sunday of Advent  “Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” Isaiah 7:14, KJV. The word “advent” means “coming.” But the season is not merely a time […]

If and only if… part 4

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Jesus makes bold and audacious promises about the power and effectiveness of prayer.  If we ask, we will receive. But in the process of making claims Jesus also connects specific conditions to these promises.  Here’s one final dangerous “if/then.”   […]

Learning from Expert Prayer Coaches – Children

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Children are not instinctively religious. Once when a preacher’s sermon dragged on beyond supposed 12:00 noon scheduled close one little girl leaned over to her mother and whispered, “Mommy, if we give him the money now, will he let us go?”  […]

If and only if… part 3

posted by Mark Herringshaw

There’s a third Biblical condition to answered prayer. Jesus lays down amazing promises about the power of asking things from God. He promises to answer. You can check out Thursday’s post if you’d like to see a few of those […]

If and only if… part 2

posted by Mark Herringshaw

There’s a second Biblical condition to answered prayer. Jesus makes some amazing promises about the power of intercession, then attaches some contingencies. You can check out Thursday’s post if you’d like to explore this more. Bottom line: God has put […]

When the Goin’ Gets Tough… Pray Like Jesus

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Weariness can kill the practice of prayer. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve decided to get up early in the morning or stay up a bit later at night to spend time talking with God. All the best […]

Enough is enough, but not enough is never enough…

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Enough is enough, but not enough is never enough.  On paper my income should be sufficient.  I get a steady paycheck every month.  We don’t spend what we have recklessly either. My wife Jill shops at garage sales. We’ve paid […]

Promises, Promises…

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Jesus’ “Lord’s Prayer” serves as a kind of jazz chart for intercession.  He lays down the melody line, the rhythm, the key and the basic chord progression. Then he invites us to improvise with variations of individual expression.    This […]

Telling the Voices in My Head Where to Go!

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I’m not a schizophrenic, at least I haven’t been diagnosed. But I do hear voices in my head.   I don’t think I’m alone. I bet you do as well. I hear my own voice of course, what some people […]

Deliver Us from Evil

posted by Mark Herringshaw

“Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from the evil one…”   According to Jesus the world, as we know it is not the world God intends.  The prayer tenet “your will be done on earth as it is […]

Praying in the Middle of Misunderstanding

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Sometimes words don’t work. Sometimes the harder we try to make ourselves understood and to understand in return, the more clumsy and confused we become in our relationships.   I had one of those experiences today. I needed clear communication […]

Forgiveness – the Caveat

posted by Mark Herringshaw

“Forgive us our trespasses…” Then Jesus in his great prayer adds one line of fine print to this too-good-not-to-be-true offer: “…As we forgive those who trespass against us.”      Hmmm. Strings attached?   Evidently, if we ask for release from […]

No Fear Here

posted by Mark Herringshaw

There’s a particular taste to fear, somewhere between bitter and fire-hot. Scientists could probably explain this, something about the adrenaline rush that hits the blood stream the moment of terror. Whatever the rational explanation, the fact remains: fear makes us […]

Carrying Everything to God in Prayer

posted by nsymmonds

Oh, what peace we often forfeit,Oh, what needless pain we bear,All because we do not carryEverything to God in prayer! “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” By Joseph Scriven I was reminded of this hymn this morning when one […]

Stunt Double for Jesus

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Maybe it’s the stereotype white shoes and plastered hair that rubs me wrong, but I admit, I sometimes have negative reactions to television faith healers. This is hard to admit, because these guys are on my team. Honestly, I believe […]

Dumping the Debt

posted by Mark Herringshaw

“Forgive us our trespasses…”   Newton was half right. To every action there is at least one equal and opposite reaction. I say, at least because usually one reaction grows into two and those into 200! Simple events have a […]

Jesus Tames Chaos

posted by Mark Herringshaw

My garage has a mind of its own. I’m not particularly sentimental, but it seems to like to collect things I otherwise don’t know what to do with. Chaos wants to reigns there and plots to put things out of […]

Raising He…aven on Earth

posted by Mark Herringshaw

“Your Kingdom come, your will be done on earth as in heaven”   Minnesota is not heaven, I assure you, especially in February. Even now, in August’s green, lush, heavy and humid dog days, it’s a far distance from paradise. […]

“Jesus Guns Down Sin”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

We don’t like the word “sin” anymore. Call them “mistakes,” or “Karma,” or “disabilities,” or “disorders” – anything but “sin.” Well, a rose by any other name smells as sweet, and a portable toilet by any other name smells as […]

“Jesus’ Weapon against Deception”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

  How do I battle the lying tongue of my enemy? The devil is called “the father of lies,” and he deserves the title. Here’s how Jesus dealt with this threat and I can model his strategy.   “Be quiet!” […]

The Wonder Words of Jesus

posted by Mark Herringshaw

  “Be quiet!”   “Be clean!”   “Be still!”   “Be free!”   “Be unafraid!”   “Be opened!”   “Be careful!”   “Be yours!”   “Be alert!”   Words of Jesus from The Gospel of Mark   Explore more in […]

“Papa God”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

We call it “the Lord’s Prayer.”  Actually, it is our prayer, taught to us by Jesus: a beautiful template to guide our conversation with our Creator.    Jesus begins with the two most radical words in human history: “Our Father.”  […]

Jesus Copycat

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I learn best by modeling. I’m too old and too soon gone from the planet to learn all I need to know by trial and error. I’ll mimic my Master, and live by his experience. I’ll copy Jesus.   When […]

Winning the War of Words

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Today I’m walking uphill against the wind. I’m exhausted physically, my mind is skipping circuits, and I have the motivation of the banana slugs I used to collect as a child in the mountains above Santa Cruz. If I look […]

Muttering to God

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Every day in great Cathedrals, in automobiles, restaurants and school libraries millions upon millions of people around the world recite “The Lord’s Prayer.”  I said it myself this morning. It is perhaps the simplest, most direct, most encompassing prayer ever […]

When Jesus Didn’t Pray

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Jesus prayed, but not always…   Jesus stayed constantly connected with God, his Father. This proved the source of his life and power. But Jesus didn’t always pray when facing challenges. Sometimes he just spoke words directly, and let the […]

For God’s Sake, Say Something!

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I grew up with an image of Jesus as a meek and mild saint.  But when I explore the gospels I see another side of him: Jesus the warrior.  This may not be popular notion, but it is undeniable.  Jesus […]

Previous Posts

Who I Am in Jesus
Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! (2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT) I love the notion of starting over – of God wiping the slate clean and re-designing my life after I've messed it up. Being IN CHRIST or "belonging to Christ" means that I l

posted 12:28:19pm Mar. 26, 2015 | read full post »

A Prayer to Find God
“Surely the Lord is in this place, and I wasn’t even aware of it! ...What an awesome place this is! It is none other than the house of God, the very gateway to heaven!” ~Jacob (Genesis 28:16,17) Jacob's plans had gone awry. He got what he wanted:  he stole his brother's birthright as well as

posted 1:36:43pm Mar. 25, 2015 | read full post »

A Procrastinator's Prayer of Repentance
Now, a person who is put in charge as a manager must be faithful. 1 Corinthians 4:2 “The master was full of praise. ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!'" Ma

posted 11:31:00am Mar. 24, 2015 | read full post »

I Found My Happiness
Make me walk along the path of your commands, for that is where my happiness is found. Psalm 119:35 My favorite part of the The Hobbit is when Gandalf urges the dwarves and Bilbo to stay on the path. He warns them that the there will come a time when circumstances will wrangle you to abandon th

posted 10:47:58am Mar. 20, 2015 | read full post »

If Your Boundaries are in Rubbles, Say, Pray, and Do This
“The God of heaven will help us succeed. We, his servants, will start rebuilding this wall. But you have no share, legal right, or historic claim in Jerusalem.”     ~Nehemiah 2:20 If the boundaries of your life are in shambles, pray the prayer Nehemiah prayed. He was sent to Jerusalem from e

posted 11:17:38am Mar. 19, 2015 | read full post »

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