What is on your prayer list? Who are on your prayer list? Do you pray daily – multiple times each day? The Bible tells us,
“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you”
(1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)
14 This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, He hears us.
The big question is – How do we know if what we are praying is in God’s will?
Tune in to the Holy Spirit. Jesus gave us the Spirit as a helper when He left earth and ascended into heaven. Take advantage of that gift! It is ours by God’s grace!
God’s Holy Spirit gives us the Fruits of the Spirit – and daily we must pray for their presence to live in our lives.
I find the first three are mine… I accept them with deep gratitude. Not everyone has the LOVE, JOY, and PEACE that are mine automatically. I know that! I do not take them for granted. And if you lack them, I pray God will provide you today with LOVE, JOY, and PEACE.
But, the other six? Oh Lord, I ask for help – Help with them everyday so that I may show more kindness goodness faithfulness (which brings blessings) gentleness and self-control.
Join us now as we come to God in prayer. We pray humbly for all people to have: Love Food Medical care Shelter Peace Respect Freedom Unity Faith Healing Hope Comfort and Security.
Every morning I begin my day with a cup of coffee and a climb up the stairs to my sanctuary where I spend time with my Bible, devotionals, prayers, and Jesus.
One of my devotionals is “These Days,” a daily devotion for living by faith, published by the Presbyterian Publishing Corporation. Its format is scripture, devotional, prayer.
Today’s scripture was:
He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep.”
In the devotional, the author, Hope Douglas Harle-Mould, wrote about the comfort Jesus provides. She included a poem she wrote to Our God of all Faithfulness:
“We pray for a cure; God sends us healing. We pray for continued life; God gives us new life. We pray death will not come; God overcomes death. We pray in anguish; God weeps with us. We pray in fear; God teaches us to laugh. We pray for ourselves; God gives us each other. We pray for miracles; God fills us with love. We pray for the future; God showers us with blessedness. God, help me trust the voices heralding your hope.”
I am assured as I read and pray and study God’s word, that just as he carries the lamb in his arms, he will be faithful to carry me.
As I descend the twelve stairs at the end of my devotional time, I recite my personal TWELVE STEP PROGRAM Thank You, Jesus, for the:
Peace (that are mine). Help me with
Faithfulness (which brings blessings),
Help me live humbly with an attitude of gratitude, and
A response of generosity, forgiveness,
Obedience, and integrity. In Jesus name, Amen!
When I get to the 7th step, I see the metal sculpture that says, “Blessings” above my door. It was a gift from our dear friends, Jim & Terry, so I pause to thank God for their faithful friendship. When I get to the bottom of the stairs, I see this cross on the wall:
It was made by Native Americans. I pause to pray for them and their peace and prosperity. I send occasional gifts to schools for Native American children – – places like St. Labre’ and St. Joseph’s – and they faithfully write back acknowledging my small donation.
Faithfulness is a two-way street. We pray to God faithfully; God answers. We give to people who touch our hearts; they give back with gratitude & smiles. We read God’s Word faithfully each day; He gives us wisdom and discernment, understanding and blessings.
Check out this different version of that old song, The B-I-B-L-E… I love it! What a way to learn to names of the books of the Bible, huh?
How do you begin your day, my friends? What does FAITHFULNESS mean to you?
Thanks for visiting today. I hope your Friday is blessed, indeed!
I really appreciate all the Happy Birthday wishes extended my way this past weekend. Thank you so much!
Even though I am happy to tell you I am starting my 83rd year on earth, I am also happy to tell you that I am a fan of Jack Benny. Now, if you are too young to remember who Jack Benny was (or you are in another country where Jack Benny was not a nationally known figure), let me tell you: Jack Benny was a comedian who embraced 39 – and decided to stay that age forever more!
Actually, I embrace aging (I wrote a blog using that title once) – I I have no desire to be stuck at 39 or any other age.
Each year brings new insights. Each year brings new joys. Each year brings new challenges. I don’t want to miss any of them.
How about you?
“Wisdom belongs to the aged, and understanding to the old. Grandchildren are the crown of the aged, and the glory of children is their fathers. Moses was 120 years old when he died, yet his eyesight was clear, and he was as strong as ever. Those who are older should speak, for wisdom comes with age.”
Each day I pray for wisdom. Each day I ask God to increase my understanding and I thank the Holy Spirit for the fruits of the spirit that are mine: LOVE, JOY AND PEACE. And I ask God to help me with the other fruits of the spirit: patience, kindness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control… those that I work to increase as I mature in my faith.
How about you?
As I gather up those birthdays and mature in my faith, I remember to keep a child-like spirit. Enjoy that song. Sing it often. Teach it to your grandchildren. Sing it with your great-grandchildren. Put it in your heart.
You can’t be a lemon or a grape if you wanna be a fruit of the spirit!! Who wants to grow up to be a lemon anyway?
Work on that patience, Jan … your great-grandchildren need to see you model it! And your grand-dog needs you to exercise that gentleness and kindness, too. Ain’t always easy.
How about you?
On my birthday, Ty (our son) and Bob went out fishing (not catching… just fishing) … and that required a lot of patience! I went along for the joy of the ride. It was cool on the water in the morning, but the afternoon warmed up.
That evening Ty and our daughter-in-law, Monika, Bob & I went in to Bozeman for dinner and dessert. We had a delightful time at a table out front of “Hooked Sushi” enjoying the music being played down the sidewalk a half a block, and the people and dogs walking by. Such fun!
Only in a college town would you find this kind of vibrancy. I love it!
We went after dinner to a very popular ice cream store … and had great fun with some college students who were in line ahead of us. Look at this cute kid! (Ya, I had fun teasing him …)
Sunday afternoon Bob, Ty & Monika went kayaking/paddleboarding while TazE & I found a shady spot and relaxed.
You can barely see the mountains outlined back there… not a typically beautiful day on Ennis Lake. Pray for the forest fires to be contained and the firefighters to be safe!
What are you doing this Monday evening besides surfing the net?
And he said, “I will make all my goodness pass before you and will proclaim before you my name ‘The Lord.’ And I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
When I ask God each day To help me live in the Fruits of the Spirit, I begin by thanking the Lord for The love, joy and peace that are mine, But then I ask Him to help me with The patience, kindness, and goodness Which do not always come naturally. I ask for help with the faithfulness Which brings blessings, and then Help with gentleness and self control.
Those nine fruits of the spirit are God’s gifts.
Because I have the love, joy and peace, I can give them away … and they return to me. When I give love, I exhibit God’s gift through My actions – and He multiplies it in me.
God’s goodness is exhibited in the gentle breeze; It is felt in the warmth of the sunshine and in the Heartfelt hugs of a friend who finally can come visit. It is evident in every bird’s song and every flower’s blooming.
God’s goodness is in my hospitality – my open door. God’s goodness is in my phone call or the note I send. God’s goodness prompts me to share the Good News And invite you to love God and trust His promises – as I do.
God’s goodness is in you! Embrace Goodness – And share it freely. It will return to you overflowing!
Join the “Spread Goodness” Challenge – Be the goodness you want to see in this world. What can you decide to do right now That will spread GOODNESS in your path?
As Nike says, “Just do it!”
Thanks for visiting JanBeek today. See ya tomorrow (God willing).
I climb the stairs each day, Then I turn on the light. Sometimes it’s still dark out. I rock ’til it gets bright.
Sipping my cup o’ coffee, Rocking as I pray, I meditate and read His Word As I welcome each new day.
I can rock away troubles; I can sit here and be still. I can listen to the Spirit, And discern the Father’s Will.
I can rock in my wicker chair Until my head and heart are clear. I can feel the Lord’s presence And thank God He’s ever near.
And when my rocking’s over I thank Jesus for his time, And slowly I descend the stairs (It’s my 12-step program climb).
Climb down to face the world. Climb down to start my day. Use the Fruits of the Spirit In a thoughtful kind of way:
Thank You for the LOVE,
and the PEACE that are mine.
Help me, Lord, with PATIENCE,
and FAITHFULNESS (which brings blessings)
8. Help me with GENTLENESS, 9. and SELF-CONTROL.
10. Help me live HUMBLY with an ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE 11. and a response of GENEROSITY, FORGIVENESS, 12. OBEDIENCE and INTEGRITY.
IN JESUS NAME, AMEN! And now I am at the bottom of the stairs where these words greet me across from the front door – “The Greatest of These is Love” – and these angels smile at me on the wall beneath the stairs:
I rock! And my day will rock, too Because I have taken time to pray. I rock! And you will rock, too Because I pray for you, too, each day.
On the back side of this page Is a list of each WordPress friend. I ask the Lord to guard you. Rock on! Accept the love I send.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek. Have a love-filled day! See ya tomorrow.
Meantime, enjoy this song that was a hit in 1955 (I was a sophomore in high school… great memories of rockin’ school dances!!)
Sanctuary time Starts with prayer and devotions Up the down staircase
Jesus prays with me Angels surround me up here Dark changes to light
Look out the window The mountains can’t hide the Son Where I am He is
12 Step Program
On my way down the up staircase, after an hour that begins my day with the JOY of God’s Holy Spirit guiding my thoughts and helping me plan my actions for the day ahead, I recite my own “12 Step Program.”
Thank You for the LOVE,
and PEACE that are mine.
Help me with PATIENCE,
FAITHFULNESS which brings blessings,
Help me live HUMBLY with an attitude of GRATITUDE
and a response of GENEROSITY, FORGIVENESS, OBEDIENCE, and INTEGRITY.
In Jesus name I Pray AMEN
And on that AMEN, I am on the floor of my foyer, over which the sanctuary waits for tomorrow where I have my Bibles, Daily Guideposts, Thankfulness Journal, inspirational books, and a collection of crosses and angels.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek. God bless you! Have a PEACEful Thursday. See ya later.
– from a message by Rev. Jean M Johnson based on Luke 17:5-10
If the disciples of Christ felt clueless,
How can I know anything for sure?
If they lived with the King of Peace,
Why weren’t their thoughts clear and pure?
They lived and rubbed elbows with
Our Lord, the Christ, Savior on earth.
They were with Him, hearing His parables,
Watching His miracles; some knew Him from birth.
Yet, they asked Christ to increase their faith.
Maybe it wasn’t a request to increase their hearts.
Maybe they were asking Him to increase their hands –
Give them the will to work and do their parts.
Because they had faith, the disciples needed
The humility for doing the mundane, daily grind.
Obeying and following Jesus means quietly doing
The duties of loving and serving with no thanks in mind.
Don’t ask for a great faith to do great things.
Be content with faith the size of a mustard seed
To do the work of serving God humbly,
Listening for the Holy Spirit to reveal every need.
Hmmm… My prayer for today is one of gratitude for my God and for His Son, Jesus Christ, and for my faith. Yes, it is small as a mustard seed! But, is it sufficient to do God’s Will today? Oh Lord, increase my humility. Increase my ability to hear and see the needs around me. Increase the capacity of my hands and feet to be the hands and feet God uses for His small tasks here on earth. You have given me ears to hear, dear God, and eyes to see the needs around me. Increase my willingness to respond to Your nudges and help me do so with no expectation of recognition. Thank You for the fruits of the spirit alive and well in me: love, joy, and peace. I know faithfulness is a gift from You, also. Help me share those fruits and radiate the gifts freely today.
This is the season of Lent. It’s the nine weeks leading up to Easter when we prepare for the remembrance of Christ’s death and resurrection by focusing on the Good News of His life. Here are my sermon notes from yesterday’s Lenten message delivered by Pastor Jean Johnson at the Madison Valley Presbyterian Church. It’s worth pondering.
I have Good News to share today: Jesus came to us with JOY to proclaim! He was rejected for the words He spoke, Rejected for His deeds in God’s name.
Cruelty, rejection, brutality could not Turn God against us – no way! The horrible, humiliating crucifixion Did not stop God, who is with us this day.
God has drawn nearer to us; He has taken up residency in this place. He is busy continuing to create for us Our future in a blessed, glorious, eternal space.
Faith comes through hearing, so we sit And listen to preaching and reading Of the scripture and reflections on The Word. It’s the Good New we are hearing and heeding.
Or are we?
What are we doing to Live His Word and prepare our hearts for Him today? I am praying for my life to be a reflection of Christ’s teaching, a mirror of love that reflects the fruits of the spirit: love, compassion, generosity, gentleness, self-control, gratitude, joy, and kindness. Join me, my friends, as we pray together for the Good News to sink in and Christ’s life to find full meaning in our hearts. Have a happy and reflective Lenten Season!