July 6th ~ Prayer Challenge for America


pray for America

1 Timothy 2:1-2

First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.”

Dear Heavenly Father,

You created us for relationships, so we lift up our family, friends, and neighbors, and leaders to You and give You thanks for them. Help us all to live peaceably with all people and to behave in a godly way with everyone we interact with. We lift up sincere prayers and intercessions for all people to live a dignified life that is pleasing to You. We pray with emphasis for divine guidance and wisdom for our national and local leaders so that their decisions and actions are just and benefit all our citizens.

Amen.

 

Image: Google Images

Scripture: American Standard Version

July 2 ~ Prayer Challenge for America


pray for America

1 Peter 2:17

Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor.”

Father God,

We thank You for the gift of this nation. Thank You for Your Word and reminder to love everyone, just as You love us all. Help us to honor and respect all people and their positions, and treat each other with dignity and respect. Help us to be helpful and generous to others. Remind us to honor and give respect to those in authority over us. Help us to be people of integrity, and generous, and obey every law from our leaders, that does not conflict with Your Word.

Amen.

 

Image: Google Images

Scripture: English Standard Version

July 1 ~ Prayer Challenge for America


pray for America

Psalm 33:12

Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people whom he has chosen as his heritage!”

Lord God,

We thank You for creating this nation where we have the freedom and right to worship You openly, and we give You praises for all Your gifts and goodness. We thank You for your many, many blessings upon this nation as evidenced by our prosperity. We ask Your forgiveness for ignoring You and Your Word and taking You for granted. Help us Lord to repent and honor You as a nation and call You our God. We ask You to bless us with Your wisdom and guide us as a nation. We are in awe of You and give You the love and respect You so rightfully deserve.  Help us to be a blessing to others.

Amen.

 

Image: google images

Scripture: English Standard Version

Prayer Challenge for July


pray for America

The Great American Experiment was founded by people with Christian ideals (The Heritage Foundation). Those ideals influenced the creation of our nation and founding documents. Our prosperity is evidence that God has greatly blessed America. We are often the envy of other nations. However, our world is constantly changing and the state of our country is often discouraging. Natural disasters, violence, and disobedience are on the increase. Those in authority often violate God’s Word, even mocking our Heavenly Father. In other areas, our founding documents are usually ignored, or taken to mean something entirely different than intended. This world frequently makes no sense. But we are called to trust God, and pray for our nation and those in authority. For the next month, as we celebrate our freedoms, will you join me in praying for America, your community, and our national and local leaders?

Daily, for the next month, I will post a verse and short prayer to guide us as we pray for The United States of America and our leaders.

2 Chronicles 7:14

“If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

 

images: google images

Scripture: English Standard Version

 

 

Freedom – In Christ


freedom1

 

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.  John 8:36

 

Thinking about July 4th always brings up patriotic images, thoughts of freedom, and thoughts of summer fun. There’s nothing wrong with that, but sometimes I think we take our freedoms for granted, and perhaps, even abuse those freedoms.

In the fifth chapter of Galatians we find the Apostle Paul discussing freedom in Christ more thoroughly. God does not want us to be in any type of bondage, which is sin. That bondage can be worry, financial issues, addictions to drugs or alcohol, eating disorders, bad habits and other sin. But we are free to ask God to release us from what we find ourselves entangled in. It will take work, and prayer, but Christ can and will lead us to freedom.

Christ alone gives us all the freedom we need. We have the freedom to enjoy Him, and be free of enslavement to sin. Is there something that is weighing you down? Have you spoken to our Great God about how to free you from the captivity of sin?”

 It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Galatians 5:1

 

Blessings on your day.

 

 

 

Freedom From What Binds Us


Rope About to Break

My Bible Study Group is studying Daniel, authored by Beth Moore. I am so encouraged when I hear men and women of God show us more truth in a single verse. I love to see how to unpack old, familiar verses and apply those truths to our lives in a new fresh way.

I’ve been focused on Daniel 3:25.

He said, “Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.”’ 

Most of us are familiar with the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego being thrown into the furnace because they would not bow down and worship the statue of King Nebuchadnezzar.  I’ve read this story many times since I became a Christian. It’s a story we teach our children in church. But there is so much in this story; it applies to every step of the Christian life.

When our heroes were thrown into the fire, they were bound. The text tells us that when the King looked in the furnace the men were unbound, and when they came out of the furnace, nothing on them was burnt – just the ropes had been removed. A fourth man walked in the furnace with these men. Most scholars agree this man was the preincarnate Jesus. Jesus freed Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. He can free us too.

There are many things that bind us. Some have addictions, fears, doubts, or wavering faith. Remember that our Lord is stronger than all of those things.

What binds you? Jesus is more than willing to remove those ropes. There is freedom in Christ. He wants us to be free.

Galatians 5:1

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

Blessings on your day.

Daniel, Lives of Integrity, Words of Prophecy,, by Beth Moore, Lifeway Publishing, Nashville, TN, 2006

Scripture: www.biblegateway.com

Image: google images.

10 Basic Blessings To Be Thankful For


thankful.024-001

I’m glad the calendar has changed to November. I love autumn, and Thanksgiving particularly. It’s not the meal that I love so much; it’s the idea of being thankful for what we have. As I type this post, I can think of dozens of things for which I am grateful.

Despite the bad news that comes to us on a daily basis, we have much to be thankful for. I ran across this article, and thought it was most relevant. I have included the link at the end of the post.

Many blessings on your day.

10 Basic Blessings You Should Be Thankful For

9:30AM EST 2/11/2013 J. LEE GRADY

Americans today face economic challenges, but we have nothing to complain about.

We Americans are a blessed people, but we are also spoiled. I know I am. I can get flustered over the stupidest things—like when my cellphone doesn’t get a good signal, when a flight is delayed or when my computer takes too long to load a website. Most people in the world don’t have iPhones, can’t afford air travel and don’t have computers. My impatience reveals my ungrateful spirit.

So how can we avoid this virus of selfish immaturity? Thankfulness is the antidote. It melts our pride and crushes our sense of entitlement. It reminds us that everything we have comes from God, and that His mercy is the only reason we are blessed.

I pray you will invite the Holy Spirit to convict you of any whining. Here’s a list of 10 blessings that many people in the world don’t have. Go over this list and then see if you still have anything to gripe about.

1. Got clean water? The next time you uncap a bottle of water or grab a drink from the tap, remember that one in eight people in the world (that’s 884 million people) lack access to clean water supplies. Millions of women around the world spend several hours a day collecting water. When you take a five-minute shower, you use more water than a typical person in a developing country uses in a whole day.

2. Do you have a bathroom? About 40 percent of the world’s population (2.6 billion people) do not have toilets. Lack of sanitation facilities spreads disease and is a major reason why more than 2 million people die annually of diarrhea.

3. How’s your electricity? The power in my house might be interrupted briefly three times a year because of Florida storms. But 1.6 billion people—a quarter of humanity—live without any electricity. And, because of unreliable infrastructure, at least 2 billion people on earth don’t have any light at night.

4. Got a roof over your head? One billion people live in slums. That’s almost one-sixth of the world’s population. Of this total, 640 million children live without adequate shelter; they live in cardboard boxes, tin-roofed shacks, one-room mud huts or filthy, crowded tenements. It’s been estimated that 1.4 billion people will live in slums by 2020. Meanwhile here in the United States, between 2.3 to 2.5 million people are classified as homeless.

5. Is there food on your table? In the United States we are battling an obesity epidemic. Yet according to UNICEF, 22,000 children die each day due to poverty. Approximately 790 million people in the developing world are chronically undernourished, and almost 28 percent of all children in developing countries are estimated to be underweight or stunted.

6. Got a stove? In developing countries, some 2.5 billion people use fuelwood, charcoal or animal dung to meet their energy needs for cooking. In sub-Saharan Africa, more than 80 percent of the population depends on these crude, traditional means for cooking, as do over half of the populations of India and China. The really sad part: Indoor air pollution resulting from the use of solid fuels claims the lives of 1.5 million people each year, more than half of them below the age of 5.

7. Got regular income? You may have had to take a pay cut during the recession. But keep in mind that at least 80 percent of humanity lives on less than $10 a day. The world’s average income is about $7,000 a year. Still, only about 19 percent of the world’s population lives in countries with per capita incomes at least this high.

8. Did you go to school? Nearly a billion people entered the 21st century unable to read a book or sign their names. Enrollment data shows that about 72 million children of primary school age in the developing world were not in school in 2005 (and 57 percent of them were girls).

9. Are you generally healthy? Americans face illness like people in other nations—and more than 12 million Americans are battling cancer in any given year. But many of us have access to health care. In the developing world, more than 2.2 million children die each year because they are not immunized. An estimated 40 million people in developing countries are living with HIV/AIDS. Every year there are 350–500 million cases of malaria, with 1 million fatalities, mostly in Africa.

10. Are you free to worship God? More than 400 Christians die for their faith every day around the world, and most of these believers suffer in Islamic countries—although the top hot spot for Christian persecution, according to Open Doors International, is the atheist regime of North Korea.

In these tough economic times you may feel the urge to complain. Be thankful instead! God calls us to live above this negativity. When we give thanks in all things, God gives us a supernatural attitude adjustment. When we thank God for all He has given us, acknowledging that we don’t deserve His goodness, our grumbling melts into gratitude and our impatience turns to praise.

J. Lee Grady is the former editor of Charisma. You can follow him on Twitter at leegrady. His most recent book is 10 Lies Men Believe (Charisma House).

http://www.charismamag.com/spirit/spiritual-growth/14683-10-basic-blessings-you-should-be-thankful-for