October 7, 2016

How to Pray

“How to Pray”

These verses aren’t saying that you must pray this prayer every time you pray. Instead, this prayer (known as “the Lord’s Prayer”) should be used as a model of how to pray: to praise God, pray that His will be done, for our daily needs, and for help in daily struggles.

Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven,  hallowed be  your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us  this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from  evil. Matthew 6:9‭-‬13

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October 6, 2016

Me, Me, Me

“Me, Me, Me”

Who enjoys spending time with or doing things for selfish people? No one! Here James is highlighting that many of our problems are a result of our own selfishness and greed. He specifically addresses that we often pray to God with false and selfish motives, no matter how we package them.

Prayer is not a method by which our own wills are to be done on earth. Prayer’s purpose is to have God’s will accomplished!

You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. James 4:2‭-‬3

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October 5, 2016

He Hears Us

“He Hears Us”

Imagine you are a little kid again. Remember all of those things that you asked for from your parents or guardians? Imagine if they said YES every time. What kind of person would you be today? Spoiled, entitled, demanding? In these verses, the promise is that if we align our prayers with God’s will, He will listen.

God listens and says YES to prayers that further his will and align with what He thinks is good for us, not what we think is good for us. Note that the verse speaks to the fact that we pray according to God’s will, not our own. Our prayer with God should be a conversation and a discovering of God’s will for our lives, not just a list of demands that we want.

And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. 1 John 5:14‭-‬15

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October 4, 2016

He Who Gives Generously

“He Who Gives Generously”

Who is the most generous person that you know? What are they generous with? Time, finances, material possessions, hospitality? God’s generosity trumps any person’s generosity that you know—by a long shot. And, he is generous with the most valuable thing there is—life!

In these verses James urges us to ask God for wisdom, among other things. He explains that God “gives generously to all without finding fault,” highlighting that we have a generous God who gives freely to us who do not deserve it. Additionally, James exhorts us to approach God with a sturdy faith because otherwise we are like the waves of the sea—tossed about back and forth unsure of what we believe.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. James 1:5‭-‬6

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October 3, 2016

It Will Be Yours

“It Will Be Yours”

What a promise for our prayers! “Whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” But one thing to consider: who is Jesus talking to? Everyone? No. Jesus was talking to his disciples.

Who or what is a disciple? A disciple is a follower of Jesus who denies his own desire, wants, and comforts and follows Jesus absolutely without question. So Jesus’ promise here is not for any and all people to claim; it is strictly for his disciples, those who deny their own way of life and follow Jesus. As a result, a disciple’s use of prayer is not one of selfish ambition to fulfill his own desires but one that is used to glorify God and further His Name.

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.  And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.” Mark 11:24‭-‬25

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October 2, 2016

Remain in Me and I in You

“Remain in Me and I in You”

Jesus is speaking to his disciples and explaining the importance of remaining connected to Him. He promises that if we remain in him and He in us, then we will “bear much fruit.” Practically, Jesus is promising that if we stay connected to him through Prayer and reading the Bible, then our spiritual lives and connection to Him will be vibrant and fruitful. On the other hand, if we do not remain in him through Prayer and reading the Bible then our spiritual lives and connection with him “withers” and dies. 

I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.  If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned.  If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. John 15:5‭-‬7

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October 1, 2016

Never Passing Away

“Never Passing Away”

There are 3 things that will never cease to exist: God, the souls of man, and God’s Word. Here Jesus says that both heaven and earth will pass away, but his words will not. The Bible is God’s Word.

John 1:14 tells us that “the Word became flesh,” meaning that God sent his son, Jesus, to earth. His Word is as eternal and as powerful as God himself, and we have access to it at all times even on our smartphones!

In that day you will ask nothing of me. Truly, truly, I say to you, whatever you ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to you.  Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full. John 16:23‭-‬24

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