Stop, Drop and Pray

Hands in PrayerI love prayer. I started a life of prayer when I was about 7 or 8 years old and have prayed every night since then. I grew up in a religion, that at the time didn’t teach that one needs to have a personal relationship with Jesus as Lord and Savior; to be reborn through Him. It wasn’t until my late thirties that I accepted Christ and gave my life to him.

While prayer is a spiritual passion of mine, intercession; praying for the needs of others can be overwhelming at times. It is an honor and a privilege to pray for others. Perhaps this is why it can sometimes seem overwhelming because I want to give each request back to God with the same heartfelt desire as the last one. I don’t want to offer up prayers ‘on the fly’ simply because life is busy. I want to take the time to pray for each request according to God’s heart.

Paul encourages us in 1 Thessalonians 5:17,18 to pray without ceasing because this is God’s will for us through Christ Jesus. And I wonder, what does it look like to pray without 24 hours delivery sign.ceasing? Certainly, I talk with God throughout the day, sometimes, okay many times, out loud!

But, what about times of quietness devoted to the prayer needs for ourselves and others? A few days ago I came across a verse and it has been traipsing through my mind like a new-born doe learning to prance along looking for food.

One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer-at three in the afternoon. Acts 3:1.

During this time both Jews and Gentiles observed three times of prayer, everyday, morning, afternoon and at sunset. Peter and John were busy men, teaching and preaching and spreading the gospel was a full-time job for them and they walked everywhere they went, it would take a good days walk and oftentimes it would take days for them to reach one place to deliver the gospel message. Yet, by all accounts, they stopped and prayed three times a day!

world-health-day-background_GyD_LcP_This thought of stopping and devoting time to prayer three times a day intrigues me. God has this in his word for a reason and it gives me hope about the ability to pray without ceasing. What would it look like if we stopped and devoted ourselves to prayer three times a day? What amazing things would our eyes be opened to see? Prayer isn’t just for the benefit of others. Prayer draws us closer into a deeper and more intimate relationship with God. God gives us prayer for our spiritual health.

Precious One, here’s to your health!

Shalom!

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Too Busy?

Aside

How do you and your Faith Family do community together? Is it attending small group, sharing meals, going on an all girls/guys outing. Or, is it giving of yourself? Sharing your gifts, talents, time or resources?

As I reflect on the Season, I am reminded that the stress and busyness of this time of year is man-made. God doesn’t intend for us to experience stress and busyness during the Christmas season or any time of year. In fact, Jesus, knowing that the busyness of life would distract us from Him gives us an open invitation in Matthew 11:28-29 “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.”Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS. (NASB).

The giving of gifts, wrapped in festive paper and embellished with beautiful bows and ribbons, has become customary for many. I love to receive gifts; I love to give gifts even more. Shopping online or going to the local mall or free-standing store is easy; a no brainer. The package arrives in the mail or you bring it home with you, wrap it, tag it and deliver.greatestgift1hdr22

But, what about the gifts that cannot be purchased; the gifts that require one to give of themselves? Why, I wonder, is this a struggle for so many of us? Here are some of the excuses that run through my mind, “I’m too busy.” “Someone else will do it this time.” “I helped out last time.” There are more, but I’m sure you get the picture.

The point is, when we choose to practice selfless giving throughout the year, it becomes second nature to say yes rather than give an excuse; even during the time of year many of us choose to make the busiest.

So, it all comes back to having a relationship with Jesus. We truly can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. When we choose to make our home in Him, he will show us the needs that are on His heart and give us everything we require to fill those needs.

Are you stressed and busy? Beloved, choose Jesus and he will give you rest for your soul.

 

Phote credit; Photobucket.