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Monday, January 31, 2011

Pray for Marriages (Change the Trend)

Good Morning Prayer Warriors,

Although in my heart I know the importance of praying for marriages, this morning I thought I’d check on a few marriage statistics to strengthen my resolve. According to a report by the CDC, by age 30, 75% of women in the U.S. have been married, and of those women, approximately 50% have cohabitated outside of marriage. Studies show that those who cohabitate before marriage are twice as likely to divorce within the first 5 years as those who don’t. Considering that cohabitation has become the “norm” in the U.S., it is no wonder that 1 in 2 marriages end in divorce!

As a society, we have moved so far outside of God’s plan. We need to change the trend.

Set an example for those who believe, in speech, conduct, love, faith, and purity. Attend to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in both tasks, for by doing so you will save both yourself and those who listen to you. 1Tim 4:12,16

We are blessed with a loving and merciful God who, when we see the error of our ways, hears us when we cry out to Him. Continue to tirelessly pray for all marriages and I will tirelessly pray for all you warriors.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

All armies are strengthened by numbers. Recruit a warrior.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Pray for Families (Baby steps to Holiness)

Dear Prayer Warriors,

What is so fascinating about babies is that they are such good mimics. Who doesn’t’ remember being entertained by a baby’s response to everything that you do. It elicits such joy. They then become toddlers, gain their voice, and become little parrots, repeating whatever you say. By the time they are teens, their verbal and non-verbal behaviors aren’t so charming anymore. Rudeness, disrespect, disobedience, and sassiness make us wonder where our adorable little child went. We only need to look backward to see where the negative influence entered. If you spend even a few minutes watching television and movies, you will realize how developmentally negative the messages are. They bombard us with bad language, immoral behavior, clothing ads that sells more than clothes, and so on. If all these bad behaviors/influences were those of an aunt or uncle, would you be inviting them over frequently to spend time with your children? ...with yourself? Then why would you invite such negative behavior in via the media ...or via friends?

In addition, we mustn’t neglect to look at ourselves. Do we monitor what our child/children is/are exposed to? Are we preserving the purity of their minds, hearts, and bodies? Are we mirroring the kind of person that we want them to become? Are we the most positive influence in their life?

We are all called to holiness. Take a moment to think about that. How can we help our family grow in holiness? What do we need to change?

This is the will of God, your holiness: that you refrain from immorality; For God did not call us to impurity but to holiness. 1Thes 4:3; 4:7


Take a baby-step and write down 3 things that will move your family in the right direction. Then pray for your family, as a family, or with other families for the courage to implement your 3 steps. If you are childless or have children who no longer live at home, become a much-needed mirror of holiness in the world, for the world.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Share a call to holiness and prayer: http://simplyinspiredprayer.blogspot.com/

Monday, January 24, 2011

Pray for Marriages (help and protection )

Good Morning Prayer Warriors!

The other night my son kindly brought my phone up to me. “Mom, I think you have a text, because it just vibrated.” I flipped my phone open and saw that I had a video- text. The minute I hit “view”, I reflexively flipped it shut with an “OH!” Someone had sent me a pornographic image/video! I explained to my son why I gasped and he must have told my husband, because now my husband was questioning me. “Who sent it to you?” Since I deleted it off my phone immediately, I hadn’t a clue, other than remembering it was an area code within our county. Since my husband is quite the sleuth, he said, “I can find out.” The next day, my husband had the answer. “It’s someone you know,” he said. I felt sick to my stomach when he told me who it was.

Pornography has wreaked havoc on our society, and it has affected marriages at unprecedented rates. (I would “google” for statistics, but would rather not put the word “pornography” in the search engine). Like never before pornographic images are easily accessible with the click of a button. Why, just turning on the television can bring unwanted images, even if it’s just a commercial. The problem is, once your brain sees a pornographic image, it doesn’t leave. I bet you can think right now of images that you have voluntarily or involuntarily seen. Once in, never out.

For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, virtue with knowledge, knowledge with self-control, self-control with endurance, endurance with devotion, devotion with mutual affection, mutual affection with love. 2Peter 1:5-7

Today I ask that we pray for marriages affected by pornography. Let us also pray for the protection of marriages that are not.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

It’s always time to increase our army of prayer warriors: http://simplyinspiredprayer.blogspot.com/

Friday, January 21, 2011

Pray for Families (Finding Prayer Time)

Dear Prayer Warriors,

Lately I’ve had a strong desire to pray for our children; young children, adult children, and everyone in-between. We need to pray for parents too; that they not be afraid to parent and set a good example. This need was solidified for me this week.

In church last Sunday I was appalled to see the 12-year-old boy sitting next to me texting on his cell-phone all through Mass. When he wasn’t texting, he was trying to engage those around him in conversation. Just when I thought it couldn’t get worse, he actually answered his phone and started talking during communion! Really?!! Did he realize that he was in the house of the Lord?

Later on in the week I went to Eucharistic Adoration. As expected, there was an assigned adult in the chapel who was with her husband. I was enjoying the quiet when the husband’s cell phone vibrated. Okay, not so bad. A few minutes later his phone rang, and he answered it! Less than 10 minutes later, it rang again, and once again, he answered it! Really!?! Did he realize that he was not only in the house of the Lord but directly in His presence? Were those calls more important? Can we not part from our electronic leash even 1 hour to be with the Lord?!!

This made me think. How much time is being stolen from your life by electronics such as television, computer, social networking sites, Wii, Xbox, Gameboy, iPhone, etc.? What is it keeping YOU from that is ultimately more important??

I would like to challenge everyone today to exchange at least 15 minutes of “screen time” for 15 minutes of prayer time. Pray for our children who are bombarded with negative messages/images on all these screens. Pray that their innocence be preserved. Pray for our teenagers who are under incredible cultural pressure to be sexualized. Pray for our young adults that they not cave in to the societal norm of living with their boyfriend/girlfriend. Pray for parents that they not embrace these same negative messages themselves. Pray also that parents not be afraid to parent. May they be blessed with the grace to speak the truth in love.

As for me, far be it from me to sin against the LORD by ceasing to pray for you and to teach you the good and right way.
1Sam 12:23


All positive change begins and ends with prayer. Prayer does make a difference. Continue to pray for the family.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Monday, January 17, 2011

Pray for Marriages (I have a dream)

Dear Prayer Warriors,

Today, we celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day, in honor of this brave civil rights activist. I know that his “I have a dream” speech is beyond famous, but I had to admit, I knew not one line beyond the title. So I thought it was about time that I read the speech in full. And as you might guess, there were so many parallels to marriage!!! (Just kidding…kind of…)

What an inspiring, beautiful, faith-filled speech. His words at times read like the Psalms, as he verbally leads the Black community from despair to hope. This is where I see the parallel to so many marriages. So many couples are crying out to be led from despair to hope.

“I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream.”

I have a dream too; For marriages that have been climbing the hills and then sinking into the valleys, to once again find their path…

“I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.
This is our hope. This is the faith ……... … With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope.


…and I pray that with the grace of our loving and merciful God, that that stone of hope will turn to faith, and that new found faith will lead to peace and joy, and that love in marriages will grow to a depth beyond imagination. May all married couples rest in the Lord because:

"With men it is impossible, but not with God; for all things are possible with God." Mark 10:27

Dare to dream. Continue to pray tirelessly for marriages.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Share my dream: simplyinspiredprayer.blogspot.com/

Friday, January 14, 2011

Pray for Families (Love changes Hearts)

Good Morning Prayer Warriors,

Have you ever had a casual acquaintance do something so kind and thoughtful that you were touched to the core? How did that make you feel? Did it change your perspective on giving of self to others? Did it make you want to pay it forward?

When we experience a profound witness of God’s love it does change us. Not only did that person show their love to you, they showed to you their love of God, and thus shined His light upon you.

You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. Matt 22:38-40


It is this type of witness we need to practice first within the family, because sometimes it is easier to love our neighbor! Actions tend to change others, not words.

Continue to pray for the strength and courage to be a witness of God’s love to your family. Pray too that they are open to receiving that love. Love more unconditionally, more frequently, and to more family members, and you will glorify God in the process. Let love be your prayer.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Monday, January 10, 2011

Pray for Marriages (Thunderclap of prayer)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Yesterday a faith-filled women shared with a group of us that she thought Satan had control of the earth, because among other things, she saw marriages crumbling all around her. I share her pain because seeing marriages crumbling was my impetus for starting my emails, and subsequently my blog to pray for marriages. Prayer, and even better yet, the rosary, is our most powerful weapon against the snares of the devil.

An amusing image came across my mind this past week. Most everyone has seen the play (or movie), Peter Pan. I flashed upon the scene where the fairy, Tinkerbell, is dying because she accidentally swallowed poison. The only way to save her is to clap. So the audience is asked to clap as loudly as they possibly can to revive her. This is how I feel about marriage and prayer. We need to storm heaven and become the thunderclap that saves marriages! But we need to become louder, and the only way to do that is to invite more people into prayer.

And we have this confidence in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in regard to whatever we ask, we know that what we have asked him for is ours. 1 John 5:14-16


ACTION: As the body of Christ, we are all affected when a marriage crumbles. Invite at least one person to become a prayer warrior. Perhaps you know a friend who goes to another church, or lives in another state. Ask if they will commit to praying for marriages on Monday. Then ask them to perpetuate the invitation to others in their faith community. If you like, to help them get started, forward them a link to my blog: simplyinspiredprayer.blogspot.com/

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Friday, January 7, 2011

Pray for Families (Ways to Pray Together)

Good Morning Prayer Warriors,

Prayer has a way of bringing people closer in subtle ways. Chances are if you were hanging out with your family or friends and said, “Hey, I’ve got a great idea, let’s pray!”, deafness would invade the room, unless of course, you were with your much beloved church friends. So much for bringing the family together in prayer.

What if instead, while driving with family members (captive audience), you said, “I always say a prayer for our family and other families on Friday. Do you have anything you’d like to pray about or do you know of a friend’s family that is in need of prayer? Would you mind taking a minute to pray with me for them?” You would not only most likely hear a “sure”, but you would learn a bit about their worries and concerns. That in itself would create some unity.

So that I may come to you with joy by the will of God and be refreshed together with you. Romans 15:32


Most precious Lord, hear our cries and hear the sobbing we often hold in our hearts. May we always turn to you in faith to hear our prayers and give us what we most need. Bless our family and all families so that we may grow together in you. We ask this in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen!

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Janet

Monday, January 3, 2011

Pray for Marriages (child-like trust)

Happy New Year Prayer Warriors!

Everyone craves new beginnings. Perhaps that is why the image of a baby has often been associated with the New Year. Sweet, innocent babies are the perfect symbol for purity, hope, unconditional love, and new life. It is no wonder then that in scripture, Christ so often calls us to be like children!

New beginnings, new life, require a change in self. How might this be applied to improving a marriage? One certainly doesn’t want a childish spouse. However, one is not called to be childish, but child-like. Would an effort to become pure in thought, word, and deed impact your marriage? Would loving unconditionally elicit a different response? What if, like a child who trusts his father, we place all trust and hope in God our Father? Would we trust that He would lead us in the right direction? Would we be willing to relinquish the control we think we have?

See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God. Yet so we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God's children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed. We do know that when it is revealed we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Everyone who has this hope based on him makes himself pure, as he is pure. 1John 3:1-3

Make a commitment to start renewing yourself with a baby-step. Continue to pray for marriages, especially those in most need.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet