A Simple but Important Reminder

I’m sure most all of us familiar with the above verse. It is a simple statement, short and easy to remember. I can’t help but wonder if over time we forget the impact of this verse. This afternoon I got a simple but important reminder of exactly what this verse means.

In order to appreciate what I am saying, I need to share with you a piece of God’s Word. Consider the following passage

Now let me explain how I was reminded of this today. I had the opportunity to go out to lunch this afternoon with my family and a couple friends from our congregation. As we always try to do, before getting up to fill our plates from the buffet, we bowed our heads and offered thanks to God. It may not seem like much since it is something we try to do at every meal. Then it happened, one of the women in the restaurant came by to let us know how much she appreciated seeing people stop to pray before a meal. It made an impact on her because she stated she just doesn’t see this happen anymore.

I am grateful for this reminder that God’s Word is Truth that can be relied on and when it says I am a light to the world, that is exactly what I am and as such need to be a positive example. May we all try not to take God’s truths for granted but allow them to guide us each and every day.

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You Don’t Have To Feel Helpless

This is the time of year where we see the weather begin to change and we also begin to see a lot of pollen fill the air. So much pollen in fact, when I walk outside my house my wooden deck and my black car are so covered they appear to be green. While the change in temperatures and the pollen are an annoyance, what really is causing me to struggle is seeing so many people effected with colds and sinuses. I have often said one of the toughest things to do is look at a little child and see them suffering and feel like there is nothing you can do to make things better. It is at times like this that I have to remind myself that I don’t have to feel helpless, there is something I can do to help. I can go to God the Father in prayer on their behalf with the confidence that He can heal them.

Similar to the above situation, have you ever found yourself saying to friends or family members that are sick, “If there is anything I can do for you please let me know.” A better statement should be, “If there is anything I can do for you in addition to praying on your behalf please let me know.” We need to remember that one of the greatest blessings we have as Christians is knowing we can go to God in prayer and know that He will hear and answer. I want to leave you with a few verses to comfort and remind you of the benefits of prayer as you continue through this time of year. I hope these will be a blessing to you as they are to me.

Prayer Works

It’s always nice when we can share in the joy and success of others. We understand from scripture that we are to:

This afternoon an e-mail came out from one of the young ladies of our congregation who has been looking for work for a very long time (and one we have been praying for). She received word that she had been hired on to work for a major company in the area that will allow her to meet her needs and also provides a great benefits package to help make sure there is more than just financial security. It is a true blessing for her and all those who care for her. What is somewhat amazing is that it wasn’t more than a week ago the same company had let her know that she wasn’t chosen at this time. While discouraged, she never gave up believing that things would work out if she stayed positive and continued to seek the Lord and His help.

This is a wonderful reminder to us all that the Lord can and does answer prayer but we must believe that He is capable and willing to do so. This is clearly stated in the verse below.

One more word of encouragement to take with you this afternoon.

May we all trust in the Lord and pray for His guidance and protection in our lives.

From the mouth and mind of a child

We all know as parents we have a responsibility to teach our children.  Prov 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.

But let us also not forget that our children can (and often do) teach us as well.  Christ taught in Mt 18:2-3 that we are to become as little children, “Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.”

I recently had the opportunity to gain a greater appreciation for this concept when listening to my 8 year old son say his prayers before bed time.  Below is his prayer as best I can remember:

Thank you God for all the things You have given us, even the bad stuff.  Thank you for the Church, the Bible, everything Lord.  Take away our sins if You think You should, You don’t have to.  Please help us to teach the baby only what is right.  We love You God and Jesus no matter what.  In Jesus’ name, amen.

What a great example.  Starting off his prayer by thanking God even for the bad things, then asking for forgiveness but only if God thinks He should, and finally reminding God and Jesus that he loves them no matter what.  Let us all take the opportunity to listen to our children and those children around us because we might just learn something.

Prayer, a misunderstood blessing

When I think of prayer, I often think it is one of the most misunderstood or under-utilized blessings God has given us.  Many times people are not sure what to say or how to say it.  Other times people do not pray because they are afraid of what others may think if they see them praying.   Lastly, people choose not to pray because they don’t have enough faith in the fact prayer truly does work.

A solution to the first problem can be found in Mt 6:9-13 which many mistakenly call the Lord’s Prayer but is better termed, “The Model Prayer.”

Lord's prayer

Paul teaches us in Rom 1:16 the proper attitude we should have toward the Gospel.  If we have this attitude we don’t need to worry about the second issue listed above.  If we’re not ashamed of the gospel, we won’t be ashamed to show it in front of others, no matter what they may say.

not ashamed of the gospel

The Hebrew writer in the 11th chapter and verse 6 deals with the final issue above, reminding us that we must believe in God’s power and ability to answer prayer.

This section will be devoted to the study and discussion of prayer and it’s importance to our spiritual life.  Feel free to share thoughts and comments as well as any prayer requests you may have.