Tag Archives: faith

Prayer Requests

This week has been busy. Sunday was Easter, Monday was my husband’s birthday, Wednesday, a young person close to my heart was hospitalized for Depression, and Thursday, 2 family members had surgeries…if my facts are correct. I have also been Spring Cleaning. Yep! busy week. In my book, all of these are reasons for prayer. We pray thankfulness for Easter, birthdays, and successful surgeries. We pray for God’s guidance to  repair health, both physical and mental, and to guide hands during surgeries. Not a week goes by, that someone I know is not in need of prayers. In my opinion, the strongest people are the ones who KNOW this power, and ask for those prayers.

Are you someone who believes in the power of prayer? Do you ask for others to intercede for you or your loved ones? Do you offer up prayers for others when asked? Whether or not you like them, do you pray for our Nation’s leaders? I was taught that a family that prays together, stays together. Well…that includes more than the members living under your roof. No matter how old I get, my siblings, in-laws, nieces, nephews, their families, as well as my friends are ALL family in my eyes.

I have also been taught to pray for my enemies, as it frustrates them, and God can use it for His glory. Are you praying for your enemies? I have to admit, that I’m guilty of not always doing this. I most certainly don’t WANT to pray for someone, when they strike out against me. I’m human. I don’t always want to put on a “nice” face. What if Jesus only prayed for, and helped people he “liked”? We would be in big trouble!!!

There was a time in my life that I actually made and kept updated a daily/weekly prayer list. Some items I would pray for daily, and others on a weekly basis. That way, each day, I had an organized prayer time. Items and people rolled on and off those lists, based on the known needs and concerns of my friends and family. Whenever I knew of an answered prayer, I would notate that on my list, and give thanks for the answered prayer for a few days, before removing the item from my lists. I have to admit that’s it’s been a while since I made those lists. At first, I just became really good at remembering everyone and everything…it became routine. Later, again, I have to admit, that “life” started getting in the way, making it easier to forget. I challenge anyone reading this to make those lists. Make a weekly list of things that ALWAYS need to be on your prayer list. Divide it up into 6 Days. Why 6 days instead of 7? I think Sundays should be totally about praising God, worship, and repentance, not about everyday life. That’s just me. Monday through Saturday for my weekly, ongoing prayers. The exception to that, of course, are the prayers, lifting up others and their needs. Pray for a portion of those items each day…For example…Mondays you pray for your Nation, Tuesdays for your State, etc. Also make a list of any known prayer request from family and friends. Pray for those as needed, making sure to pray a few days for thanks after those needs are answered. Don’t forget to add family to those lists, daily or weekly, as well as a list for things of which you are thankful. I challenge you, as I challenge myself to get back into this.

Don’t mis-understand. I DO pray. When I tell someone I’m praying for them, I DO. I just haven’t kept up with the lists in a while, which means more often than not, I’m not thanking God for His provisions and answers to those prayers. While I’m trying to organize my house, I decided it’s time to get my prayer life “organized” again. Spring cleaning takes time…in our houses, as well as in our spiritual lives, so TAKE the time that’s needed. Baby steps.  ANY improvement is forward motion, and good. We all need some “sprucing up” from time to time. I believe God appreciates it, also. Why not celebrate the gift of Eternal life God gave us through the events of Easter by cleaning our lives up, even if just a bit, for Him?  It’s a great way to thank Him for His gift to us, and we will feel better in the process.

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What Are You Doing With YOUR Light?

The Bible tells us we are to be light unto the world. We are also told to not hide our light under a bushel. Therefore, I’m always surprised when Christians choose to huddle together, run, or point accusing fingers,  instead of choosing to disperse to spread light into the darkness of this world. Yesterday, I saw another example of this, which prompted me to ask the question, above.

Here was the situation…I’m not certain who started the idea, or if it was a few locations, or designed to happen throughout the country, but on April 11th, 2014, there was a “Homosexual Day of Silence” scheduled within some schools, and a resulting proposed “walk out” protest by Christian organizations. What was the problem, you ask? Well, here is the quote from the poster I saw on facebook.

“Keep your kids home, or walk out on April 11 – Homosexual Day of Silence. Radical propaganda push on kids. during this all-day event, school officials encourage students to be silent for the entire day as a sign of solidarity with the homosexual activist movement. Students are encouraged to wear special homosexual badges, stickers, and bracelets, which are often handed out at the school entrances that day. There are also pro-homosexual posters and handouts, and even workshops.” The poster goes on to state other activities.

Now, I will go on record to say that yes, as a Christian, I agree the Bible is very black and white, specific, concerning homosexuality. Therefore, I am totally against any school participating in this day, or it’s activities. I will also say , however, that I would be equally against a day where a specific Religion or political view was paraded around campus for a day, with the expectation that anyone with an opposing view was to remain silent for that day. I would also be against a day of any “anti-group” push, as those days only serve to divide everyone, show hate, and create bullies. School is not the place for any of these agendas…period!

However, I don’t think the correct response from the Christian community was to walk out. To me, that’s running from the issue. It’s teaching our kids to run from the issue. Instead of acting in a way that causes dissension, what about choosing actions for that day that show Christ’s love for all humans? What about arming your kids with kind words and deeds to show how much God cares for them? Send them to school equipped with the love of Christ. Why not first, teach your kids how to be strong in their beliefs, whatever those may be, teach them to love others, and teach them that sometimes, you must “agree to disagree” with your fellow man. I got news for everyone. Our differences in the world are far greater than if someone is gay or straight, black or white, Christian or not, male or female, conservative or liberal, etc.

I will also say that this is not an invitation for any readers to get into a discussion or fight over WHAT the Bible says about homosexuality. I know what the Bible says, I know what I believe. You, the reader, know what YOU believe. If you and I have differing views on the issue, we need to “agree to disagree”. I’m not entertaining a discussion, here on homosexuality. My post is about Christian responses to ALL controversial situations where we are required to make a choice to stand, run, or stick our heads in the sand and try to pretend the issue doesn’t exist. Unfortunately, more often than not, Christians are choosing to run, but calling their flight a silent voice of discontent. We are not called to be silent, run, or huddle together.

IF as Christians, we really want to turn this world to Christ, we MUST let our light shine in the darkness, instead of fleeing to “safe areas”. God didn’t tell us to huddle into a tight mass with our candles, but to GO tell the world! Go CHANGE the world. We are to dispel the darkness, not try to figure out how to live in a small dot of light in the corner. What do you do when the world around you is extremely dark? You have 2 choices. I would recommend doing both. 1. Gather together with 3 to 5 friends who also carry the light of Christ, before going into the darkness. There is always safety in numbers. 2. Instead of a candle, get torches, or flashlights…LED preferred. Times have changed since Biblical days. We are not required to take simple candles into the darkness! In short, have each person carry the brightest light possible. Arm yourselves! How do you grab the brightest light in these situations? That’s easy. It’s the same way you arm yourself! Immerse yourself daily in God’s Word, and in the things that are pleasing to God. This is more than reading a chapter of your Bible daily. Read several chapters, meditate over them, memorize scripture, listen to Christian music that uplifts your soul, pray several times, daily, SING to God. Read great devotionals, like those presented by Beth Moore. Yes, treat any chance during your day that you can as worship time. That’s how you make your individual light as bright as possible. Also…be REAL, not some plastic version of a Christian.

God didn’t call us to tear down others, to point fingers, name each others sins and faults, and act like the Pharisees. Trust me…I know my faults and my sins. I have them. So does everyone else on this planet. We are to spend our days trying to reach others for Heaven. We are not called to pick each other apart. Let the Holy Spirit show others what they need to change in their lives, and just love them! We are called to change this world for the better. We are not doing that, as long as we are shutting ourselves off from the world. We are also not doing that as long as we are standing over on the sidelines, judging each other. Get into the game! Get into the fight!

I applaud my teacher friends who have chosen to teach in public schools, as they are in the trenches of the fight, in my opinion. I also applaud all my Mom friends, who are raising Godly children and grandchildren. Thank you for teaching them to stand strong in their faith. I applaud anyone who stands up for their faith, and who tries to shine a light for others. Christian/Inspirational authors also are to be applauded! We need clean, moral books that inspire and encourage, whether they are devotionals, histories, mysteries, or romances. Yes, you can find Christian, Inspirational versions of romances!

For everyone…I ask…What are you doing with your light? Are you trying to help light the darkness so others can find their way, or are you huddled “safely” with others who would rather avoid the darkness? The more we spread out, and shine our light, the less darkness there is in the world, the tighter we huddle, the bigger the darkness. Personally, I would rather have tons of dimly lit areas, so I can see to make my way through this world, than one bright spot, surrounded by pitch black.

Please…use your light wisely! OK…I’m stepping off my soapbox, now.