Praying for All People

prayer_an-invitation-to-prayer“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. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.”                                                                                                                           1 Timothy 2: 1-6

Have you ever heard of selective praying? Oh, come on now, I know that you have had prayer requests come to you that you think, “Oh, why should I pray for them? They don’t even like me.” Or, “They are surrounded by prayer already, I’ll just go on to the next person.” Or my favorite excuse is, “Why should I pray for them, they won’t listen to God when he speaks, anyway.” I am not alone in this so don’t try to hide behind righteous reasoning.

The Bible is very plain that we are to pray for all people. Timothy is just one section of many mandating this. My first thought is our president. President Trump has raised many eyebrows in the population of the world and many Christians are not praying for him just because he is not a Democrat, hasn’t built the wall yet, doesn’t talk the way we talk, parts his hair on the wrong side, and on and on. I saw the Christian community come together in praying for the right person to be put in office, and now we are letting down on our dedication to lifting him up to God. President Trump, Vice President Pence, all of the Congress and Senate, Representatives and leaders of our states and communities need our prayers. We are to present supplications: asking God to see to their every need. We are to pray: thanking God for his divine apointment and for his grace. We are to intercede: taking hold of God’s will for these people and not letting go until his will is done. And we are to be thankful: thanking God always for the salvation of the people in our leadership, for their following and praying for God’s direction.

There are people in my life who I choose not to spend a great deal of time with. And it is often hard to pray for them. But I have seen miracles happen when I get over myself and lift them up to God. Frozen hearts are unthawed. Sinful lives turned over to God. Financial needs met in ways that could only be by God’s hand. I was not always directly involved, in fact, almost never, but I know that part of the resolution came to be through my, and others, prayers. God never places anyone on your heart unless He is calling you to pray for them.

God wants us to have a peaceful life, but unless we are praying for all people, who have the power to fulfill that peace, we risk losing the grace that brought them to us in the first place. Self has no place in a peaceful world. We must sacrifice self in order to pray for others. Especially those we don’t feel like praying for. In the end, they probably need it more than anyone else; and that is why God called you to pray for them at such a time as this. Peace comes from praying for others.

 

 

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Thirty Days of Prayer for My Pastor – Day 25

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do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 4:6-7

Lord, I ask that my pastor would be a man of prayer who is able to turn every care over to You, his Father. I ask that when problems arise in his life that he would go to You first, and not as a last resolution.

I pray that he would enjoy the peace of mind that passes all understanding in every facet of life. That he would be able to rest at night, knowing that You care and that You are in control. Help him to release any urges he has that would cause him to try to resolve things himself so that Your mighty power can work in each situation.

And, Father, I pray for our church to practice taking every concern and decision to You, our God, in prayer. I ask in Jesus’ Name,

Amen

Thirty Days of Prayer for My Husband – Day 15: Our Decisions

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Make all decisions together, with God. 

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.”      James 1:5

Lord, I life every decision that we make up to You for Your guidance and blessing. We trust You, Lord, as our reminder when we start to make the wrong decision.

Lord, there is often indecision in my husband’s work. Sometimes it is difficult to go forward just one more day, but we ask You to give him release when it is time to seek something else.

Bless us in our home buying decisions. Give my husband wisdom to know when and where it is time to move or stay. As we near retirement, Lord, it is often on our minds as to what we need to do to live within our means both financially and healthily. There are many families just starting out, and I remember that. Do they buy, do they rent; what is the best choice? I look back over the years and I see that You never let us down; You were always directing our paths and sometimes closed doors that we desperately thought we wanted open. I pray for my husband that You will continue to direct him in every aspect of our decision – making lives. Throw up the red flags when we start to move without Your blessing.

We lay all our decisions at Your feet, dear Lord, and ask You for the wisdom to recognize when You are directing our thoughts. Thank You for the peace that we live in by trusting in You.

Amen

Proverbs 4:6-7

 

 

God is Not Silent

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“The Lord, the Mighty One, is God, and he has spoken; he has summoned all humanity from where the sun rises to where it sets. From Mount Zion, the perfection of beauty, God shines in glorious radiance. Our God approaches, and he is not silent.”                     Psalm 50: 1-3a

When I took this photo all I could think of was what a beautiful painter God is. The sky is His canvas and it paints anew each day. As I stood looking at this and watching the scene change as the sun rose higher and higher, I felt the Holy Spirit starting to stir in me. What was he saying? Was there a message in the beauty before me that I was missing? I listened in the silence, praying for God to speak to me a little louder so that I could hear His voice. But still, the silence.

I heard the birds start their morning songs and the leaves rustled in the slight breeze that drifted through my hair. My Scruffy dog stood by my side, his soft fur gently brushing against my leg. I looked up and the sun had risen a little higher in the sky; the clouds seemed to part to let it through. I heard no voice, no words from God. So I sat on the porch swing and wondered. Was I just imagining the stirring in my spirit? Silence.

The soft creak of the swing, the rustle of the leaves, the chirping of the birds and silence.

“Come and listen, all you who fear God, and I will tell you what he did for me. For I cried out to him for help, praising him as I spoke. If I had not confessed the sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened. But God did listen! He paid attention to my prayer. Praise God, who did not ignore my prayer or withdraw his unfailing love from me.”                                         Psalm 66:16-20

On November 06, 1976 I prayed for God to help me. I was a sinner and I needed to confess and be forgiven. He heard me. He forgave me. He listened. He spoke. He spoke words of love and acceptance through the people he put in my way. He led me gently down the path of righteousness through the teaching and prodding of the Holy Spirit. He spoke then, and he never stopped speaking.

And in the silence of the sun rising, God spoke. I knew that He was speaking those same words of reassurance today, as He did all those years ago. When is God silent? Never. In one way or another, He is speaking.