You Never Bother God

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Devotion: Philippians 4:6

“I don’t want to bother God.”  You’ve heard that statement made. In fact; my actions have conveyed this attitude many times. There’s a tendency in Christendom; to not bother God with the “small stuff.”  We’ve all heard the statement; “It’s all small stuff.”  Is it?

                Nothing is too great or too small for God.

Ever prayed to find something?  keys?  a piece of jewelry? your car?

(For those who follow this blog regularly; I know I’ve told this story before; but I believe someone needs to hear it again.)

While living in Garden City, S.C. my friend Kay and I took my children to the beach.  Ready to go play in the water; she removed her pinky “Jesus” ring, laying it on our quilt.  We played in the water for about thirty to forty minutes.  Upon returning to our quilt; the ring was gone!

Kay made the statement; “Well I guess He doesn’t want anything to do with me.”  I asked; What?  Who?  “Jesus,” she replied. Silently I prayed.  “Oh God, did you hear that?”  Well, of course He did. He hears every word we say and knows every thought we think.  We searched and searched, all to no avail.

Desperately I began to pray; “Lord, please help us find Kay’s Jesus ring.  Send someone with a metal detecter.  It was late in the afternoon and the dinner hour was quickly approaching.   Folding up our quilt and walking toward our cars; I looked back one more time; straining to see someone with a metal detector.  “Wait,” I cried.  Strolling down the beach, there wasn’t just one, not two, but three people coming with metal detectors.

These people had no idea they were an answer to prayer. It took less than five minutes for this precious little ring to be found.  It had fallen off the quilt and covered by the wind blown sand.  I said, “See, God wants everything to do with you.”

                       You never bother God.

Prayer in Motion:

Lord Jesus, thank You for the knowledge that I never bother You. You are never too busy to hear my prayers.  You care about the things that concern me.  Thank You for being a God who is Omnicient, Omnipresent and Omnipotent.  I trust You Lord.  In Jesus Name.  Amen

 

 

 

 

 

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Get Mad, Sad or Glad

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Devotion: 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Oh no, I yelled from the bathroom.  I was priming eighteen year old Hunter Green walls with Kills.  It was hard to move freely off and on the ladder in such a small space.  I had just poured fresh paint into the tray and set it on the closed toilet seat. Stepping off the ladder; I turned and knocked over the whole tray of paint. White Kills covered the whole seat and dripped down the sides of the toilet, onto the floor.  What a mess!

I ran to get old towels and a large bowl of hot soapy water.  I wanted to cry but chose to laugh; as I began to wipe up all the paint, quickly spreading all over the floor.  There was no use in crying over spilled paint.

                             Things to be thankful for.

  •     The paint was water soluble.  The week before I had                    accidentally purchased oil based Kills for the bedroom.  That        would have been a major faux pas.  The water soluble                  version was removable with the hot soapy water.
  •     God is training me in righteousness.  By the power of the            God’s Holy Spirit; we can choose our response to either get        mad, sad or glad.
  •     God wants me to be thankful in all things, because it’s His            will in Christ Jesus.  (even spilled paint)

God isn’t asking us to give thanks for all things but to give thanks in all things.  Spilling paint is only an inconvenience.  It was NO BIG DEAL.  My sole purpose in sharing this story; is to get us to think about the many times we’ve wasted good energy, on being mad or sad.

We should never allow a little accident ruin “the day the Lord has made.  Let us rejoice and be glad in it.”

Prayer in Motion:

Lord Jesus, You are so patient with me.  Thank You for allowing these little accidents, to renew a right spirit within me.  I know in me is no good things; accept for my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  Thank You for never giving up on training me in righteousness.  In Jesus Name.  Amen

 

 

 

Study for Approval

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Devotion: 2 Timothy 2:15

God has given us His Word as our guideline for life.  He wants you to know His heart on all of life’s issues.  He says: “If you seek Him, you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart.”  It is through prayer and Bible study that we receive direction from our Creator and Redeemer.

When reading God’s Word; have you ever come across a difficult passage that seemed impossible to understand?  Here are some helps given to me years ago, by my friend Jo Ellen Potts.  Before reading a passage:

  •     Pray first.  Confess your sins.  Ask God to explain the                 mystery.   Ask Him to show you the deeper things.
  •     Read it, read it, read it. Familiarity breeds content.
  •     Get out a piece of paper and answer these 3 questions.              1.     Summarize the passage.  What does it say?                        2.     Spiritualize:  What does the passage mean?                        3.     Personalize:  How do I apply this to my life?

As you search for the meaning and truth of a passage use this code word or acronym.  It will help you remember the passage you have studied.  Here’s the word.  S.P.A.C.E.

S.   Is there a sin to confess?                                                         P.   Is their a promise to claim?                                                       A.   Is there an action to take? or avoid?                                       C.   Is there a command to obey?                                                   E.   Is there an example to follow?

After you’ve answered the above yes or no questions; then ask yourself the deeper questions of how, what, when and where and why?

Why should I confess my sin?   He is faithful and just to forgive me of my sin and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)  Why should I claim God’s promises?  They are yes and amen. What do I need to do in response to this truth?  How shall I obey any command I may read?  Where will I apply this passage? ( in my home, at my church, while I’m at work?) When will I begin to use what I’ve learned from my study?

 

Personalize a principle in the passage by putting your name in the verse.  Here’s an example:

Matthew 16:13-15   This is the passage where Jesus asked His disciples, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?”  They replied, “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”  Then Jesus asked the twelve; “But who do you say that I am?”

Ask yourself, Who do I,______________ say that Jesus is?  We must know who Jesus is before we can share Him with those in our sphere of influence.

Prayer in Motion:

Oh God, may I study to show myself approved unto God.  Lord, may I be able to rightly divide Your Word; to those whom You have given me.  May I be filled up to overflowing, with the truth of who You are, so that it spills out onto everyone with whom I come in contact.  Spirit of the Living God, fall fresh on me.

 

Prayer Boot Camp

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Devotion: 2 Chronicles 7:14

Most Christians have had more instruction on prayer than they are doing.  I rather doubt we need any more seminars, sermons or even books on prayer.  We just need to be doing what we already know.  We answer to God concerning the obedience of our prayer-life.

What prayers are you praying?  Are you praying those mountain moving kind of prayers or have you fallen into the habit of saying the same thing over and over?  Your prayers have become a mantra of sorts.  You hardly even have to think when you pray them.  If these things are true.

God is waiting to revitalize your prayer life.  He wants to take you to prayer boot camp.

Pray God’s promises.  The power of your praying comes more from reminding yourself of who God is rather than reminding Him of your petitions.  Search out the promises of God.  Write them down.  Memorize them and pray His promises back to Him.

Pray fervent , effectual prayers that hit the mark.  Don’t give up on the difficult situations. Surrender your will to God’s will. Ask God to help you learn everything He wants you to learn; as you wait upon Him.  Ask Him to help you not lose heart nor lose hope.

Obey God completely whatever He speaks to your heart; no matter the degree of difficulty.  He will never leave  you nor forsake you.  He will help you to do what He’s calling you to do.

Claim specific scripture verses under God’s leadership.  His Word is sharper than any two edged sword.  He is the Word and longs to establish His Word in your heart and mind.  It will increase your faith and produce much fruit.

Give God 100 % of all the glory.  God will share His glory with no other.  He reserves the right to answer our prayers in His timing and in His way.

God wants us to pray in our closets (on our own) and then pray corporately as well.  Where two or three are gathered in His Name, there He is in the midst of them.

Prayer in Motion:

Lord Jesus, i want You to revitalize my prayer life.  I want to pray and believe all your promises are yes and amen.  Please help me pray fervent, effectual prayers that avail much.  I will obey You completely whatever you say do.  Please show me specific scriptures You want me to pray.  I give You 100% all the praise, honor, glory and blessing for the great and mighty things You are about to do.  In Jesus Name.  Amen

 

 

 

 

A Fire in My Bones

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Devotion:  Jeremiah 20:7-11

I remember the first time I heard a friend use the term; “a fire in my bones.”  Jo Ellen Potts said; “God’s Word is in my heart; like a fire shut up in my bones.  I cannot hold it back.  I will share it with anyone who will listen.” True to her statement straight from God’s Word; she teaches and lives out her passion for the Word of the Lord, from the time she was saved.

Jo was for many years; the key teaching leader for Bible Study fellowship in Raleigh, NC.  Along with her husband; she taught Sunday School to single adults.  Jo has traveled to speak and lead many Women’s Retreats. This woman has a powerful testimony and witness, to the saving grace of her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  She and her husband Richard; endured the unthinkable life tribulation; when they lost their daughter Merideth to murder.

Even though devastated; they both remained teaching leaders in Bible Study Fellowship and continued to teach Sunday School to adults. How did they continue to teach God’s Word and lead people to a deeper walk with Jesus Christ; when they themselves were in such deep pain?

If they did not speak the word of the Lord it became:

“in their hearts like a burning fire, shut up in their bones…”

No matter what has happened to you Christian; God’s Word should be a fire in your bones.  I believe Satan knew the effectiveness of Jo Ellen and Richard’s teaching and leading.  He tried his best to take them out of the loop.

                            The enemy did not win!

Although they were cast down; neither of them were cast out. God’s Word burns so deeply inside of this couple; their enemy would not accomplish his purpose.

Jo and Richard now reside in Myrtle Beach, SC; where they serve in their local church.  I am blessed for the years I was able to live five minutes away from these dear friends.  They are finishing well; the race set before them.  They will never stop giving out God’s Word, whether it be with groups of people or individuals whom God brings into their sphere of influence.

Prayer in Motion:

Oh God, I pray Your Word will become a fire in my bones.  May I never hold it back; nor be induced by life’s circumstances, to keep it to myself.  Your Words are life changing to my soul. Jesus; may I give out Your truth till my last breath.  In Jesus Name.  Amen

Who’s in Your Corner?

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Devotion: Romans 4:17-18

I was watching one of many Make a Wish Foundation videos.  They get me every time.  These precious children are riddled with the disease we all hate:  CANCER.  Their days are consumed with weakness, pain or sickness from their treatments.

Too many parents have heard, Mom; Dad, Am I going to die? Will I lose my hair?  Will I be in pain? Then there are tears. Floods of tears.

And yet; the most amazing thing happens. Somewhere deep down inside; these kids become fighters….full of HOPE versus DEFEAT.  Where does that come from? Parents? Is it a God given gift?

Most of the Make a Wish videos involve the child meeting his or her hero.  Make a Wish grants the child his or her dream.  Normally; the children  want to meet a well known sports celebrity or an American idol; who is gifted in his or her musical ability.  It’s so kind of these celebrities to make a personal visit with a very sick little boy or girl.  The child is blessed and honored to have the person they idolize; appear right in front of them.  Cam Newton, Stephen Curry and many others have done this numerous times.

Celebrities are always busy training, performing or preparing for the next event; so it’s awesome to watch them give out hugs and encouragement to children they have never met before.  Giving of their time lets these kids know:

                    There is someone important in my corner.

It gives the Make a Wish kids hope and encouragement because someone special cares.

                               Who’s in your corner?  

Who longs to give you hope?  The celebrity of all celebrities:

                                   JESUS CHRIST

is the One who died in your place.  He offers peace that passes all understanding. He controls your past, present and future.  He will give you a hope that does not disappoint. He is for you and not against you.

Prayer in Motion:

Lord Jesus, may I remember You are in my corner.  You are always with me.   You will never leave me nor forsake me.  I thank You Lord for your unselfish, unending love for me.  I pray for those children who have cancer.  Oh God be their hope.  In Jesus Name.  AMen

National Selfie Day

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Devotion:   Ephesians 4:22-24

Our nation loves to celebrate.  It only takes a few minutes of perusing your calendar to observe how many days are set apart; to honor the designated person or event.  There is a day to honor Matin Luther King, Groundhog Day, Valentine’s Day, Presidents Day, St. Patrick’ Day, April Fools Day, National Teachers Day, Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, Grandparent’s  Day, Independence Day, Fourth of July.  You get the idea.  In fact we celebrate people or events in every month, except August.

There is nothing wrong with honoring the people or events deemed important enough, to be placed on our calendars.

Wednesday was National Selfie Day.  Really?  Who knew there was such a thing?  Who made that decision?  It hasn’t yet made the calendar but will we see it proudly displayed on June 22, 2017?  I wonder how many people posted pictures of themselves on this declared day?   We do love ourselves.  Just look at Facebook. Self plastered all over.

We are to love ourselves to a degree; at least enough to take care of the temple in which God’s Holy Spirit dwells.  We need to eat right; sleep right and get some form of exercise, Do we love others at least as much as we love ourselves?

The Bible tells us to love one another, to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.   It would be refreshing to our world; if Christians had the reputation of loving others, as we love ourselves.  We would see many more coming to salvation and to our churches.

Prayer in Motion:

Lord, help us to love others as we love ourselves.  Help us to care deeply for those You have placed in our sphere of influence.  May we courageously share the One who told us to love our neighbors as ourself.  In Jesus Name. Amen