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Yesterday we posted about the beauty of our trip to the Pocono Mountains, forgetting completely the major blessing that God gave.  You see, it stormed all the way here and the rain let up when we were in the most picturesque spots.  In fact, the rain started just after we finished at the dump station and ended as we arrived at this campground.  We still, after moving every few weeks since February 20th, 2017, have yet to be rained on during tear down or set up.

 

Good planning?  Probably not, as our reservations are generally made 4 to 6 months in advance.  Just plain lucky?  No, we have learned that if we are faithful in our prayer life the Lord is faithful in answering prayer, even in the little things. 

 

 

Our Lord loves to hear from us in all our circumstances, not just in our times of greatest need or when our strength is failing.  He needs to hear about our joy every day and He wants us to depend on Him in every situation.  We pray for Linda’s and my health, peace in our lives and safe and trouble-free travels continuously.  During our prayer times, we pray for friends and family.

Go to bed every night praising the Lord for the day that just happened. When the day was really good, like yesterday for us, this is an easy thing to do. The words just seem to flow, the praises and thanks come directly from our hearts to our God and prayer is more like a conversation between two old friends.

But, when the day is filled with pain and it seems like the sun will never shine again, then the words of praise and thanksgiving come slowly and without conviction. But, in worship and with thanksgiving in your heart is the only way to approach the throne. It is in times of trouble that prayer is most important and it is in times of trouble that the proper attitude in prayer is the most difficult.

Too often, we start our prayers with ‘why?’. Since we can never know the mind of God ‘why’ is unanswerable. Of course, as humans we question and the Lord understands this without our voicing the question. We need to accept His will, the path He has chosen for us, and worship Him in words and deeds. We need to voice this acceptance in our prayers and worship and give thanks for every good thing and every opportunity for spiritual growth that He sends our way.

As we walked the lanes of this campground last night, pausing to enjoy the night we marveled at the peace and love in the air. The sky was clear, the night air balmy and all was good. This is the way we were created to be. Last night was a quick peek at the garden of Eden.

The love of the Lord can be spread effectively by prayer. Every morning we pray for those who seldom see glimpses of peace, who struggle daily with the cares of this world. Those we know by name we pray for intentionally, for their specific needs and for protection for them from the powers of evil. We pray for healing for the sick, homes for the homeless and softening of the heart for those with hearts of stone.

The power of our prayers is more effective when they are intentional and prayed in accord with many fellow Christians. So, as we meet people, we try to remember to ask if they need prayer and even though we often fail, our prayer list continues to grow.

Ephesians 5:1-2 Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

This morning Linda and I started a new daily habit. We are going to be in prayer every day at 7:30AM Eastern/6:30AM Central time. This is a time that will coincide with the 21 days of prayer and fasting at Harvest Church. Our prayers will join with the prayers of churches across the nation praying for our families, homes, cities and nation from January 8th to the 28th. Live in another nation? No problem… pray the same for your nation as we pray for ours. All rulers, nations and principalities are subject to the Lord.

Starting today, we invite all our friends from around the world to join us in this endeavor and invite all to put their prayers on the Throne with us. Let’s raise a massive spire of smoke, filled with worship, praise and intercession to the Lord every day. The Lord loves our prayers as individuals and revels in our prayers as part of the larger body of Christ. If not every day, then at least during the 21 days… if not at 7:30AM eastern time, then at a time of your choice.

Fasting will be an important part of the 21 days event. For more information on fasting go to: http://www.sdrock.com/files/docs/fast/21-day-prayer-fast-guide.pdf

The days of the week and even the holidays become lost when you are retired. Time has very little meaning, unless you have made an appointment, and life seems to fly by. When we were working and time was so very important, we hoarded it and tried to save it for later. There never was enough time to do all of the things that seemed so valuable then.

Now, time is all we have and still it seems to fly by even faster. We are now on a journey to see the United States and its many wonders, to help others when and where we can, and to pass the knowledge of the Lord on to those who will listen. Perhaps the most valuable thing that we do is watch, watch our family grow in love and wisdom, watch our old friends become stronger in their faith and watch our new friends as they learn more about the Lord.

As we witness the spiritual growth of others, as we move about this land and see the spiritual strength of its inhabitants, we are encouraged about the future of mankind. God’s love is here; His Presence is here with His people. Be not afraid for the future, for He is there too, waiting for His perfect timing to return and make the world right again.

We are to depend on the Lord, our God, completely for everything, praying in every circumstance for His will to be done in our hearts and minds. This does not mean that we can’t pray for ourselves and others, that we can’t bring our petitions before the Lord. Our God is a kind and gracious God and hears the prayers of the righteous.

When the world intervenes and creates havoc with your world, it is not only your right but your responsibility to pray to God for relief from the pain and a solution to your situation. You must also hear the cries of your fellow Christians and raise your voice with theirs. We are taught that prayer lifted to God is a sweet aroma to His nostrils and pleasing to Him so pray always and in every circumstance.

There is no prayer too trite and no prayer too ambitious, they are all heard and they are all responded to. So pray for yourselves, pray for your friends and then watch and wait for the answer. It will come. Probably not when you want it and probably not how you want it to be. In fact, all too often we miss the answer because either we forget that we prayed or forget to watch.

The needs that surface each day can crowd out the thoughts of praise and worship, thoughts of the almighty God and His many blessings. Some mornings, no matter how hard we try to hear His voice, to see His magnificence, to find His plan for our day we are frustrated by intrusions into our solitude. Thoughts interfere, our mind wanders and our resolve finally wavers as we move on without the renewal from the Lord that He wants for us and that we need.

At that very moment when we give up satan wins. When we stop seeking our daily bread if just for one day satan wins. The world will appear a little brighter and God a little dimmer each day that you fail to seek God until you find yourself completely in the world and God is nowhere to be found. Has this happened to you? Is it happening now? Reevaluate your time with God.

Living in a Christian nation should make it simple for us reevaluate our time with God, but the opposite is true. Our society has failed to see that it has stopped seeking the communal daily bread, stopped seeking God and now seeks worldly pleasures and has replaced God with many idols.

Some days when we wake up our spirits are ready to connect with God and some days they are not. On those days when we feel close to the Lord and full of joy and happiness expressing our love is easy. On the dark days when we do not immediately feel the Lord, we need to search our faith to see where we really are.

On these days that begin in darkness start by seeking God’s Face, by searching His Word, by praying for discernment to see where you are. The path to the Lord is straight and narrow and sometimes rocky. Look to see if you are on His path for His path and His presence never changes and the light is always bright there.

Satan loves to entice you to another, easier path and ever so slowly cover the light with darkness so that you have trouble seeing the light. Each small step away from the true path makes returning more difficult and the light dimmer. So when you find yourself moving into darkness cry out to God to show you the way back. Jesus loves you and wants you to return to His side and walk with Him in this life so you can be with Him forever.

Let us pray…

Dear Heavenly Father, Today is the anniversary of a very painful time in the history of this country, a time of significant loss and a time of extreme anger and searching for retribution, a time when this country was tested by satan and a time when extreme hatred was born in the hearts of many. This hatred has festered and grown and taken on a life of its own Father.

We have allowed this malignancy of hate to spread from a focused enemy to each other Lord and we cannot seem to be able to rid ourselves of the desire to be angry and filled with hate, even to the point of hating our fellow Americans. Lord, this nation needs healing, needs to learn to know You again. Lord, I need to be healed from this judgmental attitude, this tendency to anger, this seed that was planted on September 11, 2001.

Heavenly Father, draw this evil from us and fill the void with the Holy Spirit once again so that this nation can be a shining beacon that truly shows what You, Jesus can do in the hearts and minds of willing believers. But Father if it is Your Will that we continue down this path as an example for the world to see of righteousness gone wrong, so be it. Thy Will be done. Amen

Faith is such a simple thing that we can have trouble understanding how it can be. How it can be that all we have to do is admit to God that we are sinners who cannot redeem ourselves and He will forgive us. How it can be that one Man, Jesus, could take on the sins of every man and make all who believe righteous before the Lord. How it can be that each of us can speak directly to the Creator and put our cares and worries in His hands. How it can be that the Almighty Infinite God will hear our prayers and answer them. Answer them not as we want them answered but as we need them answered for our benefit and His glory. As we believe in and love Jesus so too Jesus believes in and love us and sits at the right hand of God, the Father, speaking for us.

Just trust and God will provide. If you pray believing that your prayers will be answered, they will. The answer may come in a form that you do not recognize or not exactly when you thought it should arrive. But arrive it will, pay attention and you will see the wondrous works of the Lord.

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