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Monday, August 31, 2015

Pray for Marriages (A Prayer of Blessing)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and God of all encouragement, who encourages us in our every affliction, so that we may be able to encourage those who are in any affliction with the encouragement with which we ourselves are encouraged by God. 2 Corinthians 1:2-4

We know that marriage is about the “us” not the “I” and the “we” not the “me”.  However, maintaining the “us” is the hard part, as human nature brings us back to “me”.  How blessed we are to have those who encourage and pray for us!

So here is your challenge.  This week, every time you catch yourself saying the word “I” or “me”, bless a marriage by praying, “God bless my marriage” or God bless the marriage of ­­­­­­­­­­_________  & _________.    No doubt you will have many prayer opportunities throughout the day!! At the end of the day, do something for the “us”, and/or spend time in prayer for a married couple separated either emotionally or physically. 

Heartfelt prayers are always heard and many are blessed as a result of prayer, but strangely, we are often the ones transformed by grace.  Thus is the greatness of our God!

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Increase the prayers for marriage and the flow of His grace.  Pass it on!   

Friday, August 28, 2015

Pray for Families (Soul-Searching)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

We are such an image-focused society.  We want people to look at us and say, “Wow! Look at her/him!”    Maybe you don’t see yourself in this (as I do myself), but consider how much time you spend on the following. 
  • Hair (beards included): cut, styled, dyed, curled, straightened, extended, weaved, braided, bleached, tweezed, or waxed
  • Skin: exfoliated, cleansed, moisturized, steamed, lasered, or peeled
  • Body: weight-lifting, cardio, running, hiking, stretching, yoga, soaking, or steaming; sitting, TV watching, recreational eating, or loafing 
  • Apparel: brand, label, style, fit, shop, shop, shop! 
  • Toys and Recreation:  $$$
Add up the time and money spent weekly doing the above. Are you looking good yet?  In whose eyes?  Have you given any thought/time to improving the condition of your soul, the only thing the Lord looks at and cares about? Are you in balance? Are you using your money to build up His Kingdom or your kingdom?

This is the will of God, your holiness. 1 Thessalonians 4:3

We were each created with a most beautiful soul, unique and ravishing in the eyes of the Lord.  What are you doing to see that it stays in pristine condition?  What are you nourishing it with?

For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Matthew 16:26

If you were turned “inside out”, where the only thing one could see was your soul, would you be pleased with your appearance?

You shall be called by a new name bestowed by the mouth of the LORD.  Isaiah 62:2  Uh-oh!! ;)

We are blessed to have a God that loves us unconditionally.  Let us praise Him.  Let us thank Him.  Let us spend time with Him and love Him in return.  Let us ask Him to heal us of every infirmity of heart, mind, body, and soul.  Pray for your family, pray for the world.

can do all things through him who strengthens me.  Phillipians 4:13

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet  

We all need a nudge sometimes to wake up to a spiritual reality. Nudge someone-pass it on!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Pray for Marriages (Mutual Self-Giving)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Most are familiar with the scripture, “Wives should be subordinate to their husbands as to the Lord.” I bet if asked, many women would admit that either in the past or in the present, their ears have closed off after hearing that one line and they couldn’t tell you what comes before or after it. Sound familiar? Men, have you ever flaunted that one line to your wife? Do you know what comes before or after it?

Be subordinate to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Did you catch the reciprocity? Do you see the mutual self-gift? (Underlines are mine.)

Wives should be subordinate to their husbands as to the Lord.

As submission to the Lord is done out of love, and is a choice of free will, so is a wife’s submission to her husband.

For the husband is head of his wife just as Christ is head of the church, he himself the savior of the body.

Think of what Christ did for the church? Do you not see a husband’s great responsibility? Will Christ ever leave his church?

As the church is subordinate to Christ, so wives should be subordinate to their husbands in everything.

Husbands cannot command what the Lord forbids. Christ subjected the church to himself so that he could guide her to purity, truth, and holiness, as these were virtues He had.

Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ loved the church and handed himself over for her to sanctify her, cleansing her by the bath of water with the word,

Christ preached the words of everlasting life and died for the sanctification of the church. Husbands, are your words to your wife life-giving? How or what will you sacrifice for the sanctification of your wife? Wives, how will you sacrifice for your husband?

that he might present to himself the church in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.
Christ elevates the church to Himself rather than forces the church beneath himself. Are you doing the same for your spouse? Do you help her be all that God created her to be?

So [also] husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one hates his own flesh but rather nourishes and cherishes it, even as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body.

Self-love comes very easy to us. Do you love your spouse as much as yourself? Consider that through the sacrament of marriage, you and your spouse become ONE.

For this reason a man shall leave [his] father and [his] mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. This is a great mystery, but I speak in reference to Christ and the church.

Who has more influence over you, your parents or your spouse? Are you and your spouse a united front? Are you acting for the good of one another?

Spend some time meditating on Ephesians 5:21-32. What is the Lord saying to you? Pray for your marriage, and if you aren’t married, please pray for someone else’s marriage. May God richly bless all of you who pray so faithfully for marriages.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Marriage, as God intended it, is most beautiful. Pass it on!!

Friday, August 21, 2015

Pray for Families (Living in Love & for Love)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

The Lord only asks one thing of us and that is to love.  While we like to be on the receiving end of love, why is it so hard to be the giver of it?  The answer lies in what true love is: surrender, self-sacrifice, and the pouring out of oneself for another. But we’re not allowed to pick and choose who should be the recipients of such love but rather we are to love everyone.  

If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Luke 6:32

Need a visual of love in action? Just look at the cross.

How can that be lived in daily life? I decided to briefly examine the actions of the “Author of Love” to get a better understanding.

The Lord loves, forgives, listens, hears, sustains, comforts, protects, keeps faith, gives sight, raises up, secures justice, thwarts the wicked, and sets captives free. He is slow to anger, gracious and compassionate, and is kind and merciful…. just for starters.

None of us lives for oneself, and no one dies for oneself. For if we live, we live for the Lord, and if we die, we die for the Lord; so then, whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s. For this is why Christ died and came to life, that he might be Lord of both the dead and the living. Romans 14:7-8

Love works for the good of others. Begin with prayer. Pray for your family that all may live both in Love and for Love, so that they may better learn how to love.

Whoever is without love does not know God, for God is love. 1 John 4:8

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Show some love by passing it on!  

Monday, August 17, 2015

Pray for Marriages (Forged by the Fire)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

While grocery shopping, a young adult male behind me in line looked at my groceries and asked if I was having a party.  “No”, I chuckled, “but I guess I could.”  “Are you married?” he asked.  I’m not sure his intent with this question, but he did seem either drunk or high.  “Yes I am”, I responded.  “31 years.  Everyday is a party!”  Initially, I meant it in jest, but then realized that yes, I should be celebrating such a milestone every day!   The checker seemed impressed.  He commented that he thought it would be hard to be married for so long because interests change over time and it would be easy to grow apart.   A valid comment, I thought to myself, but then I spoke up.  “Love is not a feeling, because certainly feelings come and go.  Love is a DECISION that one has to make every day.  There will be adversities,” I acknowledged, “but a relationship, like steel, becomes stronger when it is tested by fire.”

You tested us, O God, tried us as silver tried by fire…we went through fire and water, then you led us out to freedom. Psalm 66:10, 12

As I left the store I pondered the conversation.  There is so much that can interfere with a marriage and prevent it from flourishing.  Yet, I contemplated, there is only one way to have a long marriage.  God must be invited in since we, as humans, are completely incapable of a lasting union without Him.   Where we would normally run from “fire” (thus the high divorce rate), if we trust in His promises, He will sustain us, never trying us beyond our strength.  Ironically, it is in this fire of His love we are each forged and strengthened, no longer two but one, making us ironclad.

Iron is sharpened by iron; one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17

You may have to suffer through various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold that is perishable even though tested by fire, may prove to be for praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 1:6-7

Lord, help couples not to run from each fire in their relationship, but rather to allow you to purify their love.  Forge each marriage into something as precious as gold, as strong as iron, and as beautiful as a gem reflecting your light.   Lord give all couples the wisdom to invite you in, the faith to endure the fire, and a love as precious as yours.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Share the torch of His of love! Pass it on! 

Friday, August 14, 2015

Pray for Families (Faith in Adversity)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

While we often pray for issues within the family, my heart goes out to those families throughout the world torn apart by wars, persecution, and poverty.  Many families lose one or both parents, and are often left without any source of income. There are many actions we can take to help, but the first and simplest is prayer.  Say a prayer for them and then a prayer for yourself so that you may know in what manner the Lord is calling you to respond.

The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom should I fear? The LORD is my life’s refuge; of whom should I be afraid? When evildoers come at me to devour my flesh, these my enemies and foes themselves stumble and fall. Though an army encamp against me, my heart does not fear; Though war be waged against me, even then do I trust. Psalm 27: 1-3

Let us pray for these families, that their faith, hope, and love remain strong, and that our hearts are open to our brothers and sisters throughout the world.  Lord, teach us to serve as you served!  Help us to love as you loved!  Use our hands, feet, and voice to bring about change in this world, a change where hearts are transformed into vessels of your love and mercy.

One thing I ask of the LORD; this I seek: To dwell in the LORD’s house all the days of my life, To gaze on the LORD’s beauty, to visit his temple. For God will hide me in his shelter in time of trouble, He will conceal me in the cover of his tent; and set me high upon a rock. Even now my head is held high above my enemies on every side! I will offer in his tent sacrifices with shouts of joy; I will sing and chant praise to the LORD. Psalm 27:4-6

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Help the Lord transform a heart.  Pass it on!  

Monday, August 10, 2015

Pray for Marriages (Love more)

Pray for Marriages (Love more)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Do ever feel that your love is inadequate, not good enough, not creating the end you hope for?

We can pray to love more, but we aren't capable of loving more unless we allow the Lord to love us more.  The only way to experience more of His love is to spend more time with the Beloved. 

We love because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19

So carve out prayer time to be with Him, speak to Him, and to listen to Him. Be loved, and he will teach you how to love so that you may bring His love to others, especially to your spouse. Of course, don’t forget to pray for marriages.

And this is my prayer: that your love may increase ever more and more in knowledge and every kind of perception, to discern what is of value. Philippians 1:9

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Spread love around the world. Pass it on! 

Friday, August 7, 2015

Pray for Families (Luminaries of Light)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Many worry about family members who have little or no faith.  Words can be very ineffective and may do very little to convert another’s heart.  However, experiencing the love of Christ, the Word made flesh, may make all the difference.  Can your family, friends, or others see Christ’s light in you?  Do they experience gentleness and love?  Compassion and caring?  Patience and forgiveness?

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came to be through him, and without him nothing came to be. What came to be through him was life, and this life was the light of the human race; the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. John 1:1-4

To those who did accept him he gave power to become children of God, to those who believe in his name, who were born not by natural generation nor by human choice nor by a man’s decision but of God. John 1:12-13

If we say, “We have fellowship with him,” while we continue to walk in darkness, we lie and do not act in truth. But if we walk in the light as he is in the light, then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of his Son Jesus cleanses us from all sin. 1 John 1:6-7

Take care, then, that the light in you not become darkness. If your whole body is full of light, and no part of it is in darkness, then it will be as full of light as a lamp illuminating you with its brightness.” Luke 11:35-36

Pray that you may resist sin and embrace being a child of the Light!

For God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to bring to light the knowledge of the glory of God on the face of [Jesus] Christ.  2 Corinthians 4:6

No longer shall the sun be your light by day, Nor shall the brightness of the moon give you light by night; Rather, the LORD will be your light forever, your God will be your glory.  Isaiah 60:19

Be a child of Light!   We are called to be His light in the world and oh how this world needs the darkness dispelled!  Pray for the conversion of family members, your community, and the world!

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Be a luminary of Light by being the torch of love in your family!  Send the sparks flying by passing it on!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Pray for Marriages (Perseverance for the Journey)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Sometimes I find myself empathizing with the Hebrews in the book of Exodus.  They prayed that the Lord deliver them from their exile, and so the Lord sent them Moses to lead them out of Egypt.  Since at times, the conditions in the desert seemed worse than the slavery they left, the people complained. If only they had understood that God’s ways are not our ways.  Did they not see that He gave them all that they needed at that time?  If only they had known and understood God’s larger plan.  

See that I follow not the wrong path and lead me in the path of life eternal.  Psalm 139:24

Actually, things are not very different today.  Take marriage for example.  How many have prayed for the marriage of someone, perhaps even their own, and wondered why the Lord hasn’t helped them yet despite the duration of their prayer?  So we grumble, tired of the “desert” the Lord has us walking.   Whining and complaining, we accuse God of not listening.  Often we find other idols-money, sensuality, or material goods.  Like the Children of Israel, we decide to do things our way.

I will lead the blind on a way they do not know; by paths they do not know I will guide them. I will turn darkness into light before them, and make crooked ways straight. These are my promises: I made them. I will not forsake them. Isaiah 42:16


Let us pray for an outpouring of grace for all married couples.  May the Lord increase their faith, hope, and love.  May He deepen their trust in Him and help them persevere in their unique journey.

[May] we even boast of our afflictions, knowing that affliction produces endurance, and endurance, proven character, and proven character, hope, and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the holy Spirit that has been given to us. Romans 5:3-5

“Behold, God’s dwelling is with the human race. He will dwell with them and they will be his people and God himself will always be with them [as their God]. Rev 21:3


We are eternally blessed!

Peace, Love, and Joy,
Janet

Hope does not disappoint!  Pass it on!