Follow by Email

Friday, May 29, 2015

Pray for Families (Truth and Love)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

One only has to listen to world news for a few minutes to hear and then hopefully realize that the battles assaulting Christianity, marriage, and family in this world are SPIRITUAL, between light and darkness, good and evil. These battles exist in our country and in our homes. There is a tsunami of new cultural messages, especially through social media, forming the minds of both youth and adults, surround-sounding them with messages that at one time would have been considered counter-cultural.  Daily, more and more people are absorbed into the new culture and are taught the new “right and wrong.”

Evil creeps in so insidiously.  For example, who would have thought in the 1960’s that just a few decades later it would be common and for a pregnant woman to kill the baby in her womb if she didn’t want it?  Then years later, who would have guessed that laws would be passed allowing for people to legally receive help to commit suicide?  When will we hit the point of no return?  Or have we?  If you think you can ride the waves of cultural change unharmed, be advised that the waves may one day crush you or the floods will sweep you away. 

What can one do now?

Draw your strength from the Lord and from his mighty power. Put on the armor of God so that you may be able to stand firm against the tactics of the devil. For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens. Therefore, put on the armor of God, that you may be able to resist on the evil day and, having done everything, to hold your ground. So stand fast with your loins girded in truth, clothed with righteousness as a breastplate, and your feet shod in readiness for the gospel of peace. In all circumstances, hold faith as a shield, to quench all [the] flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Ephesians 5:11-17

Ask yourself, are you:  Prepared for battle?  In the battle?  On the wrong side of the battle? Watching from the sidelines?  Frozen in place?  What is the Lord asking of you?

Pray for yourself and your family, that you may be given wisdom, understanding, and faith so that you may always know what is true and good. Ask to be clothed in the love of God, so that you may always lead with love.  For hate doesn’t win this type of war, Love does. For love disarms, and will always lead to peace.

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Clothe a warrior. Pass it on.  

*  All bold highlights are mine, not part of the original scriptural text.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Pray for Marriages (Those in the Armed Forces)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

A picture that went viral on the Internet struck me in a special way.  It showed a young Marine praying with his bride right before their wedding ceremony. So as not to see the bride before the wedding, with his back turned, the groom reached his hand around a corner to grasp hers. Then he prayed for God to bless their marriage. This Marine gets it, I thought.  He knows he will confront many battles in life, but nothing is as important as putting on the Armor of God.  With it, he will be better equipped to weather all the storms in life.

To you we owe our hymn of praise, O God on Zion; to you our vows must be fulfilled, you who hear our prayers. Psalm 65:2-3

In honor of those who serve in the Armed Forces, let us pray for a special blessing on their marriages.
  • When military deployments create long separations, Lord, may each spouse feel connected to each other through their prayers to You.
  • When the weight of parenting and household duties becomes unbearable for the one left at home, Lord, send helpers to lighten their burden.
  • When loneliness leads to temptation, Lord, may your tender love curb their desires.
  • When spousal reunions aren’t as joyous as planned, Lord, smooth the transition period so that their joy may return.
  • When a spouse loses his/her life while serving, may their love for others be their legacy, for there is no greater love than this.  Lord, bless and comfort those left behind.
May the God of peace, who brought up from the dead the great shepherd of the sheep by the blood of the eternal covenant, Jesus our Lord, furnish you with all that is good, that you may do his will. May he carry out in you what is pleasing to him through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever [and ever]. Amen. Hebrews 13:20-21

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Send a marital blessing. Pass it on!  

Friday, May 22, 2015

Pray for Families (The Outcasts)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Loving is easy when it’s… well, easy.   Not everyone is likable, but we are called to love him or her regardless.  In a family, it can be quite difficult when an individual has a negative impact on the entire family.  They may be into excess: for example alcohol, narcotics, porn, or violence. Or perhaps they have a criminal record or immoral behavior.  Maybe they have mental health issues.  Whatever the problems, these are the relatives that confuse, hurt, and challenge us the most. 

Hatred stirs up disputes, but love covers all offenses. Proverbs 10:12

Love has many forms.  It might be saying no to them, reprimanding them, helping them, or perhaps just holding your tongue.  Maybe it’s asking them to leave. Maybe it’s sending them a note that focuses on the positive.  Maybe it’s just hugging them and saying I love you.  Maybe it’s allowing them to hit rock bottom so that the only direction left is up. 

Give me back the joy of your salvation, sustain in me a generous spirit. Psalm 51:12

This day, this week, let us pray for these family members. 

Lord, you love each of us so much, as we are your one-of-a-kind creation.  Help each of us grow in your image, so that we can become exactly who you created us to be.   Help those family members that hurt themselves the most, negatively impact others the most, and confound us the most.  Help us to understand them, help them, and most importantly, love them.  Guide us as to what that “love” looks like in your divine plan.  Draw each of them close to you, so that they learn to love the voice of the Good Shepherd.  Heal them with your gentle touch, and heal the hearts, minds, and/or bodies of those hurt by them.

Therefore I tell you, all that you ask for in prayer, believe that you will receive it and it shall be yours. Mark 11:24

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Healing can be found in prayer!  Pass it on!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Pray for Marriages (Keeping the Peace)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Has it ever happened to you where you are having a great day and then bam, a word, a situation, a phone call, or something else sets you off and your peace is totally disturbed? You then become annoyed and testy, longing for the “you” of just 5 minutes prior.  Satan has found a crack.

The devil is the destroyer of peace; peace in your heart, peace in your marriage, peace in your life.  He just lies in wait for the perfect timing to attack, knowing exactly which buttons usually put you in a tailspin.

How do we preserve your peace?  By staying close to Christ in prayer. How do we restore our peace?  Prayer.  How do we make sure that we don’t inadvertently become Satan’s instrument to disturb someone else’s peace, such as our spouse’s? Prayer.

The Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from the Evil One.  2 Thessalonians 3:3

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. John 14.27

Father, lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the Evil One.  Jesus, strengthen us with your armor.  Holy Spirit, bring us your peace.  Guard us and guide us, so that we may remain in your peace and transfer it to others, especially our spouse. Bring peace to all marriages, so that it spreads like wildfire through the family and then throughout the whole world.  Keep the fires of our love burning!

“In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the world.” John 16:33

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Restore the peace, then  pass it on! 

Friday, May 15, 2015

Pray for Families (Living the Good News)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

It’s easy to feel holy if good, kind, and generous people always surround you, as you can just live in the blessing of their love.  But in this world, whether it be in our families, our workplace, or in public spaces, we can’t avoid those who are rude, cruel, self-absorbed, spiritually lost, corrupt, or perhaps in need of money, food, clothing, or shelter.  Our challenge is to love them as they are and to help them as needed.

“But to you who hear I say, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. To the person who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other one as well, and from the person who takes your cloak, do not withhold even your tunic. Give to everyone who asks of you, and from the one who takes what is yours do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you. For if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do the same. If you lend money to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit [is] that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, and get back the same amount. But rather, love your enemies and do good to them, and lend expecting nothing back; then your reward will be great and you will be children of the Most High, for he himself is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. Be merciful, just as [also] your Father is merciful. Luke 6:27-36

Lord, give us the grace to live the Good News.  Help us to love as you love, unconditionally, without judgment, and without limitation. Send your Holy Spirit upon us!  Enflame our hearts as we allow you to love others through us, as we recognize how incapable we are without your assistance.  Bless us, bless our families, bless our friends, and yes, even bless those who hurt and offend us deeply. We pray for transformative grace upon all of your children, that all may be strengthened in mind, body, spirit, and heart, thus strengthening the entire Body of Christ.  Heavenly Father, we your children need you desperately.  Wrap your loving arms around us now and forevermore. Amen.

Continue to pray. It will change your day.

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Good News is to be shared. Pass it on!  

Monday, May 11, 2015

Pray for Marriages (A Marital Pep Talk)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

When we were young children and were asked to do something that didn’t sound very enticing to us, we would respond with a whine, “But I don’t want too!!!”  As married adults, even though we are called to love our spouses, there are times and circumstances where we just don’t feel like it. Our entire being shouts, “But I don’t want too!” as we mentally complain to the Lord.  Perhaps all we need is a little encouragement and a good pep talk to help us through such times.

“Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will give you light.” Eph 5:14 We love because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19 Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God. 1 John 4:7 Do not continue in ignorance, but try to understand what is the will of the Lord. Eph 5:17 Be subordinate to one another out of reverence for Christ. Eph 5:21 Husbands, love your wives, and avoid any bitterness toward them. Col 3:19 Husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. Eph 5:28 Likewise, you wives should be subordinate to your husbands so that, even if some disobey the word, they may be won over without a word by their wives’ conduct when they observe your reverent and chaste behavior. Your adornment should not be an external one...but rather the hidden character of the heart, expressed in the imperishable beauty of a gentle and calm disposition, which is precious in the sight of God. 1 Peter 3:1-4 So be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us and handed himself over for us as a sacrificial offering to God for a fragrant aroma. Eph 5:1-2 Be of one mind, sympathetic, loving toward one another, compassionate, humble. Do not return evil for evil, or insult for insult; but on the contrary, a blessing, because to this you were called, that you might inherit a blessing. 1 Peter 3:8-9 Finally, rejoice. Mend your ways, encourage one another, agree with one another, live in peace, and the God of love and peace will be with you. 2 Cor 13:11

Pray for each other, pray for another, and ask that His light shine on all the married couples struggling to love. 

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Give a married couple a pep talk.  Pass it on!  

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Pray for Families (In the Presence of God)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Have you ever had a week where you were so busy it felt like you didn’t have time to breathe? Such was my week, nonstop. I've learned though, that here is a transcendent peace when one pauses, even for a moment, to realize that the Lord is right there beside them.

I was always in your presence; you were holding me by my right hand. Psalm 73:23

And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age. 
Matthew 28:20

Be continually aware of His presence in your life, so as not to leave His side.  Since praying is just conversing with God, speak often, ask with child-like confidence, and remember to ask for blessings on the family.  Simply praying is simply good. 

Peace, Joy, and Love,

It’s just that simple. Pass it on!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Pray for Marriages (Hearts Set Afire)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Last weekend I had the opportunity to spend some time with my aunt and uncle who have been married for 64 years.   I should have asked them their secret to marital success, but observation and listening revealed much of it.   Christ was at the center of their marriage and their faith was their foundation.  They honored their vows by loving for better or for worse, (they still snip at each other) for richer and for poorer (they’ve been both), and through sickness and in health (with the last several years having lots of sickness, hospitalizations, surgeries, therapies, etc).  There was reciprocity in their caregiving, as they each were sure of their role.  When they griped at each other it had no lasting effect on the other, as if they knew each other had to have the opportunity to vent.  They didn’t waver in their commitment to love each other for a lifetime.  It made me wonder if the following had been read at their wedding and they took each word to heart.

Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, [love] is not pompous, it is not inflated, it is not rude, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

Feelings of love flow from loving actions. , Let us pray for married couples to begin loving each other more through their behaviors.  Holy Spirit, be their guide and inspiration!  Set their hearts on fire with love for one another and send them out to be your light in the world!

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Light another’s torch and pass it on!  

Friday, May 1, 2015

Pray for Families (Good Work vs Good Works)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

We are a workaholic society both in the workplace and in the home.   Sometimes we are full throttle, even in our leisure.  Working has its place and we should always strive to excel at our work, but do we give the same attention to doing good works?

Don’t spend all your time working, but rather spend some time doing good works.

Therefore, my beloved brothers, be firm, steadfast, always fully devoted to the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. 
1 Corinthians 15:58

For we are his handiwork, created in Christ Jesus for the good works that God has prepared in advance, that we should live in them.  Ephesians 2:10

Let us pray for balance in our family lives, our work lives, and our leisure time.  May we always be attentive to doing good works, for our coworkers, for our friends, and especially for our families.  Lord, help us be more devoted to your work!

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Evangelize by doing something kind for another.  Then challenge them to pay it forward and pass it on!