Bible, Christian

Promises That Will Encourage You To Keep Praying for Someone You Love

Is your heart heavy because someone you love rejects Jesus as Savior? Perhaps he(she) calls himself an atheist. Or maybe, he just refuses to search for Truth and instead stands stubbornly in the darkness, clinging to “intellectual” arguments that support his atheistic beliefs.

If you’ve been praying for someone for a long time, don’t give up now. Be encouraged and strengthened by the promises of God.

Galatians 6:9 (NIV) says, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” 

For a long time, I have been praying faithfully everyday that Jay would accept Jesus as Savior. Becoming weary, my prayers have been reduced to “God please help Jay. I don’t know how to pray for him. I don’t even know where he is. You know, Lord.” That is the prayer of someone who is weary in prayer.

After searching God’s Word for encouragement, I was not disappointed. This is what I learned. It is not meant to be a “formula” for prayer, but rather, an encouragement that you are praying according to God’s will and being led by the Holy Spirit. So don’t give up!

Following Paul’s example, simply pray that he will be saved. “Brothers and sisters, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved.” Romans 10:1 NIV

Pray that the Lord will send Christian workers into his life. God uses people to accomplish his will.“What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants, through whom you came to believe—as the Lord has assigned to each his task. I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow.” 1 Corinthians 3:5-6 NIV

Pray that God will give him spiritual understanding and that the Lord will lead him to repentance. ” … in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.” 2 Timothy 2:25-26 NIV

Pray that God will open his heart.  “The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul” Acts 16:14 NIV

Pray that God will give him spiritual sight and make His light shine in his heart, as He did yours.

“The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” 2 Corinthians 4:4 NIV

For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ. 2 Corinthians 4:6

Continue to pray with perseverance. God has called you to pray for this person. As you pray, remember to thank God for His love, mercy, kindness, and faithfulness. 

“Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving” Colossians 4:2 NIV

“Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.” Luke 18:1 NIV

Pray with the knowledge that his salvation is God’s will.  

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”  2 Peter 3:9 NIV

(Where did we get the idea that God should be on our time table?) 

Therefor pray, “your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” Matthew 6:10 NIV

 Pray with confidence, remembering that our God is a God of mercy, love and faithfulness.

“The heartfelt and persistent prayer of a righteous man (believer) can accomplish much [when put into action and made effective by God—it is dynamic and can have tremendous power].” James 5:16 AMP

 Your prayer for someone’s salvation is most definitely a spiritual battle. Do not listen to the devil’s lies. Of course Satan will try to discourage you and make you give up. Instead, obey God’s Word and keep praying.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Ephesians 6:10-12 NIV

From this study, here is what I have learned: God hears my prayers. It’s not that He isn’t answering them or that He doesn’t hear me. (The devil will try to tell us that!)

My “assignment” to pray for Jay has not ended. The battle is not over. In fact, I am in the heat of the battle. I will keep praying.

When I am praying God’s will, I know He is working even though I haven’t seen the final result yet.

“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1 NIV

God’s Word encourages me and strengthens my faith! It will do the same for you.

 

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog 

Christian

Spiritual Warfare: It’s Not For Everyone

If you are praying for someone who is in bondage, you are engaged in spiritual warfare. It could be bondage to drugs, alcohol, spiritual blindness, pornography, gambling, or something else. There’s a long list of chains.

“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Ephesians 6:12 NIV

I have been asking the Lord to teach me about spiritual warfare. I know that countless numbers of books have been written about it, but I want the Holy Spirit to teach me from the Word of God.

This morning my reading passage happened to be Joshua, chapters 3 through 7 – the fall of Jericho. I encourage you to read this and think about how their physical warfare might relate to our spiritual warfare.

The Lord instructed Joshua concerning how they would cross the Jordan and take the city of Jericho. I was struck by several things.

First of all (and most importantly), the battle was won by the Lord, not by the Israelites and their own strength. It is the mighty power of God that breaks yokes.  “The Lord said to Joshua, ‘See, I have delivered Jericho into your hands.” Joshua 6:2 NIV

Insight #1: In spiritual warfare, the battle is won by the Lord.

Secondly, they didn’t always understand why they should do certain things. Obedience was paramount. “March around the city … for six days … Have seven priests carry trumpets …” Joshua 6:3-4 NIV  Many times I have been led by the Holy Spirit to do something and only saw the significance of it months later. They didn’t know why marching around the walls of Jericho was necessary, but they did it anyway.

Insight #2: If you are engaged in spiritual warfare, make sure you are being obedient to God in all things in your life. We can ask for His help to be obedient.

Thirdly, spiritual warfare is not for the immature or half-hearted believer. It’s serious business.

Joshua commanded the people, “Shout! For the Lord has given you the city! The city and all that is in it are to be devoted to the Lord… Keep away from the devoted things so that you will not bring about your own destruction by taking any of them. Otherwise you will make the camp of Israel liable to destruction and bring trouble on it. All the silver and gold and the articles of bronze and iron are sacred to the Lord and must go into his treasury.” Joshua 6:16-19 NIV

When I read this, I immediately thought about the tithe. There have been times in my life when I gave 20%. There have been times when I didn’t give any tithe at all. To be honest, I never thought much about it. I gave when I had plenty and didn’t give when I had little. All I can say is, this hit me so hard that I stopped dead in my tracks, calculated my tithe, and wrote the check for Sunday morning.

Why? Because when Achan kept what belonged to God it brought destruction to the people. They were routed by the enemy when they went up to fight and many were killed. They were defeated in the battle against Ai because of disobedience and greed. Joshua 7:4-5

Insight #3: If you expect to win the battle, make sure you are giving to the Lord what is His.

In Romans 15:4, it says, “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us…” What I have written in my blog today is only one small insight into spiritual warfare, but I believe it is what the Holy Spirit is teaching me now. 

Please share the personal insights into spiritual warfare the Holy Spirit has given you. Your thoughts are welcome.

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog 

Christian

We Must Be Real With God

About four months ago, I started writing some of my prayers in a prayer journal. This has really helped me to be more “real” with the Lord. These written prayers, while respectful, have been more open and honest and less formal, more like talking to a close friend.

At first its was a little scary to be less formal with the Lord. I thought that if I was going to talk to the Lord, it should only be about important things. But I have learned that this is not true. I can, and should, talk to Him about all my hopes and fears. I can ask Him about anything because he cares about me and He loves me.

“Casting all your cares [all your anxieties, all your worries, and all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares about you [with deepest affection, and watches over you very carefully]. 1 Peter 5:7 AMP

Jesus calls us His friends. “I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. (John 15:15).  

Is Jesus really my friend? James 2:23 says that “Abraham … was called God’s friend.”

In John 15:14 Jesus said, “You are my friends if you do what I command you.”

Yes, Jesus wants to be your friend.

A relationship with God is about being real. Jesus explains that no matter how hard we try, we can’t hide who we really are from God anyway.

Jesus taught His disciples saying, “Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.” (Luke 12:1)

In other words, be on your guard against hypocrisy! Don’t let yourself become a hypocrite! Be vigilant in guarding yourself against it. Why? Because it’s a trap easily fallen into.

So let’s talk about the Pharisees. Do you think the Pharisees knew they were hypocrites? I don’t think they did.

If they started out as “Godly men”, what happened? God sent the Messiah and they hated Him! How is that possible? What happened between the time the Pharisees decided to live a holy life and the time they killed the Messiah?

Maybe they hated Jesus because He (basically) threw a monkey wrench into their whole way of life (what they did and how they thought about things).

The word hypocrite came into English from the Greek word hypokrites, which means “an actor” or “a stage player.” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)

Yes, I could walk around acting like a Christian. But actually letting God change me on the inside requires that I spend time in His presence. This is how we guard against hypocrisy.

It is impossible to be real with God and at the same time put on an act. You can do one, but not both at the same time.

If we pray to know Him better, He will answer that prayer. He will teach us. He will do it! Our part is always to ask for His help. I believe that the key to avoiding the trap of hypocrisy is to be real with God, to ask Him to help us in all things.

For example, “Lord, help my unbelief. ”

“Lord, help me to hunger for your Word. ”

“Help me to spend time in prayer. ”

Wherever you struggle, He will help you. You don’t have to pretend to be someone you’re not. He knows already where you struggle to be obedient and He loves you anyway. Don’t be afraid to ask Him for help.

“Behold, God is my helper and ally; The Lord is the sustainer of my soul [my upholder].” Psalm 54:4 AMP

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

Scripture References:

“And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper (Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor—Counselor, Strengthener, Standby), to be with you forever— ”  John 14:16 AMP

“But the Helper (Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor—Counselor, Strengthener, Standby), the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name [in My place, to represent Me and act on My behalf], He will teach you all things. And He will help you remember everything that I have told you.” John 14:26 AMP

“So we take comfort and are encouraged and confidently say, “The Lord is my Helper [in time of need], I will not be afraid. What will man do to me?” Hebrews 13:6 AMP

“I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.” John 15:15 NIV

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! … On the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.” Matthew 23:27-28 NIV

But there is nothing [so carefully] concealed that it will not be revealed, nor so hidden that it will not be made known. For that reason, whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered behind closed doors will be proclaimed on the housetops.” Luke 12:2-3 AMP

Photo by Gift Habeshaw on Unsplash

realchristianwomen.blog 

Christian

When Will I Pray??

Spend an hour in prayer every morning? Not likely!

Whether you’re a teacher like me, or a busy mom, things can get hectic once school starts! God showed me something about this that has given me peace and encouragement from Matthew 14.

When Jesus heard about the beheading of John the Baptist, he wanted to get away and talk to His Father. His heart must have ached with sadness. Can you imagine how you would feel if someone you loved was treated with such cruelty? I would want to be alone.

Jesus didn’t get to be alone or pray because thousands of people had followed Him and wanted Him to heal their sick. Imagine that! Thousands of people wanting/ seeking Him/ needing Him.

All day, Jesus ministered to the people and healed their sick. When evening approached, Jesus fed all the thousands of people with five loaves of bread and two fish.

Jesus sent the disciples away in a boat and dismissed the crowds. Can you imagine how exhausted He must have been both physically and emotionally? But this was the only time He had to pray, so He went up on a mountainside by himself to talk to His Father. He stayed there until the fourth watch of the night (between 3am and 6am).

I guess I always thought that early morning was when we are supposed to pray if we’re serious about prayer and knowing Him better. But if Jesus can pray after a long day, so can we.

This is what God showed me in His Word: He will meet me in the late afternoon, in the night, or in the morning. He will speak to me when I am fresh and rested (in the morning). But He will also speak to me when I am exhausted (after a hard day at work).

So all of you teachers and busy moms, listen. If you don’t have time to pray in the morning and your prayer time is in the afternoon or evening when you are exhausted, it’s OK.  Jesus understands. Your work place is your mission field – your place to let Jesus shine. That’s important.

I have 32 students with special needs. I know what it is to be tired after work. But the Lord assures me that He is with me. I need Him everyday, all day. And He has promised to be with me.

We may have seasons of rest. But for most of us, real ministry to real people doesn’t take place in church or prayer time. It takes place when we are about our lives and our work.

I would be very happy to spend all my time in prayer, reading my Bible, and writing my blog. But the Lord has made it clear that, although that pleases Him, He wants me out on the “battlefield”, aka at work, making relationships and showing God’s love and compassion. That’s why we’re here.

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

Matthew 14:3-21 NIV

Now Herod had arrested John and bound him and put him in prison because of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, for John had been saying to him: “It is not lawful for you to have her.” Herod wanted to kill John, but he was afraid of the people, because they considered John a prophet.

On Herod’s birthday the daughter of Herodias danced for the guests and pleased Herod so much that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she asked.Prompted by her mother, she said, “Give me here on a platter the head of John the Baptist.” The king was distressed, but because of his oaths and his dinner guests, he ordered that her request be granted 10 and had John beheaded in the prison. 11 His head was brought in on a platter and given to the girl, who carried it to her mother. 12 John’s disciples came and took his body and buried it. Then they went and told Jesus.

13 When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns.14 When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick.

15 As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.”

16 Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.”

17 “We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered.

18 “Bring them here to me,” he said. 19 And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. 20 They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. 21 The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.

realchristianwomen.blog 

Photo by Kinga Cichewicz on Unsplash

Christian

God’s Purpose For Your Blog

The best thing about becoming a blogger is the community of friends I have come to know. I know some of my blogger friends (BFs) better than the friends I actually live around! I sincerely love them and care about them.

I always thought God’s purpose for my blog was to encourage my brothers and sisters in Christ.  But it might be something more than that.

Maybe God’s purpose is for me to develop relationships. I know that He gave me this desire to write a blog and He has put love in my heart for followers I have come to know. When God calls you to love and pray for someone you never met, well that’s God’s love in action.

I know some of my followers well because they have shared their lives and their hearts with all of us. I could know someone my whole life and never find out some of the things I know about my BFs including their battles and their weaknesses.

I started collecting pictures of some of my BF’s to help me keep everyone straight in my mind. When I receive a comment or read their blog, I refer to their picture.

God is putting in my heart a desire to build relationships all through my life – at school – in the community – and on WordPress.

I hope you will join me in an effort to pray for and support people we come to know and love through our adventures in blogging.

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog 

Christian

That’s Amazing!

Did you know that every star you see in the night sky is bigger and brighter than the Sun? The Sun is a dwarf star, but it’s much closer to us than the stars we see at night. In fact, the bright star Deneb, which is prominent in the evening skies of Fall and Winter, is 19 quadrillion miles away.¹

If we will take the time to contemplate God’s creation – watch it and think about it, His majesty and power will astound us.

You will see things you never noticed before. And that, will bring you closer to the heart of God. So let’s all slow down and take a closer look at what God has made. It’s pretty amazing.

God spoke: “Lights! Come out!
Shine in Heaven’s sky!”²

BOOM!

To see what happened next, watch this dramatic time-lapse video of the night sky.

CAUTION: WATCHING THIS VIDEO CAN MAKE YOU WANT TO QUIT YOUR JOB AND BECOME AN ASTRONOMER!

The Incredible Night Sky

SCRIPTURE REFERENCES

“I sing for joy at the works of your hands.” Psalm 92:4 NIV

“Lord, our Lord,
    how majestic is your name in all the earth!

You have set your glory
    in the heavens…

When I consider your heavens,
    the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
    which you have set in place,

what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
    human beings that you care for them?” Psalm 8:1,3,4 NIV

What did you think of the video? Are you ready to quit your job?

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog 

¹http://earthsky.org/space/ten-things-you-may-not-know-about-stars

²Genesis 1:14 MSG

Photo Credit: Ryan Hutton, Unsplash

Christian

How To Get Through Tough Times

I paced the floor clutching unpaid bills.  Over and over, I thanked God for His promise, declaring out loud: “My God will meet all my needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.”¹  

Thirty years ago, we had three young children, and times were tough. Those were the days when I wouldn’t dream of buying boneless chicken breast when I could buy the whole chicken cheaper and cut it up myself! Eating at McDonald’s was too expensive. I didn’t have money for gas, but then I didn’t have a car! 

During those difficult times, it wasn’t easy to believe God’s promises, but in faith I thanked God anyway. We made it through and God showed Himself faithful over and over again. God met our needs, and He will meet yours, too!

I’m thankful for those days because God showed me His faithfulness with a front row view. These are a few of the Scriptures that brought me closer to Him in my time of need.

“Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” Matthew 10:29-31 NIV

“And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4: 19 NIV

“Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” Matthew 6:26 NIV

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV

“Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.” Psalm 8:10 NIV

“In the day of my trouble I will call to you, for you will answer me.” Psalm 86:7 NIV

“‘Because he loves me’, says the Lord, ‘I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call upon me and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble.'” Psalm 91: 14-15a NIV

“You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word.” Psalm 119:114 NIV

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog 

¹Philippians 4: 19