Posts Tagged ‘pray’

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Enemies of the Heart | Guilt

April 9, 2019

Subscribed to this devotional recently and I’m just gonna leave Day 2 here. Just in case you stumble across this, read up.

Andy Stanley: Enemies of the Heart 

Devotional Day 2

“Fessing Up”

Scripture: 1 John 1:5-10

The first enemy of the heart is guilt. Guilt is the result of having done something we perceive as wrong. The message from a heart laden with guilt is, “I owe!”

Consider the man who runs off with another woman and abandons his family. Without realizing it at the time, he has stolen something from every member of his family. He has robbed his wife of her future, her financial security, and her reputation as a wife. From his children’s perspective, this man has stolen their Christmas, traditions, emotional and financial security, dinners with the family, and so on.

Now, the man who did all this doesn’t think in terms of what he has taken. Initially, he thinks in terms of what he has gained. But the first time his little girl asks him why he doesn’t love Mommy anymore, his heart is stirred. He now feels guilty. Dad owes.

Nothing less than paying that debt will relieve a guilty heart of its burden of guilt. People try to work it off, serve it off, give it off, and even pray it off. But no amount of good deeds, community service, charitable giving, or Sundays in a pew can relieve the guilt. It’s a debt. And it must be paid or canceled for a guilty heart to experience relief.

How do you get your guilt canceled? The answer comes in one of the first Bible verses I memorized as a child: 1 John 1:9. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (kjv).

Confession has the power to break the cycle of sin. And like most medicinal remedies, it works when applied properly. Proper application happens when we confess our sins, not just to God, but also to the people we’ve sinned against.

Guilty people are usually repeat offenders. And as long as you’re carrying a secret, as long as you’re trying to ease your conscience by telling God how sorry you are, you’re setting yourself up to repeat the past. However, if you start confessing your sins to the people you’ve sinned against, odds are that you’re not going to go back and commit those sins again.

Confess both to God and others, and you will slay this enemy of your heart.

What are you feeling guilty for? Confess your sin to God and to whomever you have hurt. Do it today.

“This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth. But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin. If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts.”

‭‭1 John‬ ‭1:5-10‬ ‭NLT‬‬

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Answered Prayers

October 9, 2017

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I’ve never been religious, not even sure what that word really means. I’m not saying that I don’t believe in God because I do. In fact, I know I have a great relationship with God, I just don’t really believe in religion or maybe I’m not impressed with religion. Religion for me, limits someone’s understanding of faith as each “religion” has its own unique ideologies and cultures and traditions EVEN IF they claim to worship the same higher being. But despite not compelling to what a religious community (belonging to one) expects me to do, (not that I go around doing mindless stuff, of course I have my values), I know that my God loves me the same as everyone else.

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I’ve lost count on how people would tell me off when I don’t go to church like as if rubbing shoulders with hypocrites really make my Sundays better. I do go to church sometimes, the coffee is always good. (I know I’m gonna irk off a number of people with that statement but at least I’m being honest here and isn’t respect for others’ views taught in church as well?) I am very much aware, growing up in a family with closed religious beliefs, that as a “Christian,” I am obliged to go to Sunday mass or worship service, share in charities and actively participate in small groups. Not sure what sort of validation they get from doing so as I feel like their being good followers of Christ or their idea of how a Christian life is led are pegged on their church attendance (this is based on my experience, not talking generally). I don’t go for certain reasons I’m sure most people (who also call themselves Christians) won’t or refuse to understand. I however, worship my God in my own, intimate way, I don’t really need to let everyone in on how I do it because at the end of it all, it’s gonna boil down to just me and Him. I keep a devotional that I read and reflect on every morning, I converse with my God about random things as I go about my day and I’m a fervent believer of prayer. Yes, I pray a lot and I also teach my children how to pray and be thankful for the life God has graced upon us. How fortunate are we to experience this beautiful world.

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But it wasn’t always like that. To people who knew what I went through more than a decade back, they would somehow understand how I came to a point where I’ve shaken my fists and screamed at God for far too many times demanding that He listen to me and do as I ask because what I say would get me out of the miserable life He’s assigned me with. I’ve questioned Him endlessly as to why so much shit had to happen to me when I know I’m not a bad person and I feel like I’m being a good Christian — fulfilling my spiritual obligations, going to church every Sunday, tithing, being respectful and trying so much to be patient with everybody even when most of the time I can’t be. It’s so easy to put fault on someone when things turn sour and don’t go the way we expect it to be and in my exhaustion, I did just that. I blamed and cursed God for all the ugly that was happening to my life and even tried to convince myself that I don’t believe in Him anymore.

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Despite the thoughtless condemnation, my God’s love was steadfast and unwavering. He never failed to surprise me. What He gave me was always way better than what I asked for and up until know, I continue to be amazed. During those times when my heart was filled with hate and so much anger, I went on to ignore my God for years, failing to notice the colorful blessings He’s slowly painted my life with. In my doubt, the Lord tenderly showed me how to just let go and trust and when I finally decided to open my eyes, I broke down and reached out and it was through prayer that I developed a real relationship with Him. As my days unfold and more of my prayers are answered, I think I have an idea, maybe a clearer fragment on how He wants my life to play out. Yes, I will never fully understand how and I will always be impatient why it doesn’t ever happen overnight (after all, I am only human) but I am assured that God’s timing is perfect.

In between the weight of the world, we tend to forget that there is a God ready to receive our cry with a huge embrace, without judgement and full of mercy. You don’t really need to be religious to learn how to pray or worship or build a connection with God. Religion is a stereotype believers of Christ, of a God, of a higher being, could really do without. What this world needs is to commune and impart and share mutual beliefs that bank upon faith and kindness and compassion and not traditions. I long stopped decrying God’s decisions on my life and instead pray for discernment and the patience to wait because I now know He knows best and I will always be grateful and find comfort in the fact that I do not walk this life alone.

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DMV

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When Praying for Others Is Hard 

March 9, 2015

Because sometimes, the best way to help others is to pray for them.

Sharing Day 282 of the reading plan I am currently on from http://www.joycemeyer.org/ Joyce Meyer: Promises for Your Everyday Life – a Daily Devotional

When Praying for Others is Hard

How do you respond when someone hurts your feelings? Do you let it rob you of joy? Or maybe your emotions run wild.

Luke 6:27-28 tells us what we should do when people hurt us: We must pray for them and bless them.

Can you believe that? We’re to pray something like, “Oh, Lord, I pray that You’d just make them so happy!”

I still don’t get that, but I’m willing to do it in obedience and say, “Lord, I don’t know that I really want them to be happy, but I’ll pray that in faith anyway, because You’re telling me to bless them with Your presence.”

Choosing to pray for them is one of the most difficult things God asks us to do, especially if we believe that whoever hurt us is in the wrong and doesn’t deserve to be forgiven.

But God instructs us to practice forgiveness. And when we choose to follow the path of forgiveness, we will experience the peace and joy that come through obeying God’s Word. When you obey God, He can help you overcome the pain and enjoy life more.

Prayer Starter: God, it’s hard, but I pray for those who have hurt me and ask You to bless them. Help me to release the hurt and forgive them.

Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you. (‭Luke‬ ‭6‬:‭28‬ NLT)

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LOVE YOUR WORST ENEMY

October 27, 2014

Read this on the front page of the October 26, 2014 Ikthus Sunday Guide and just wanted to share.

LOVE YOUR WORST ENEMIES

This perhaps is one of the more difficult commands of our Lord. It is easy to love people we like, but to love the unlovable seems impossible. Can you love the person who bullies you in school? Can you love the neighbor who spreads rumors about you? Can you love the friend who has swindled you?

“Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.” – Matthew 5:44-45

As the verse says, God loves even these “bad people”. God loves both good and bad people. Both enjoy equal amount of sunshine, both freely inhale the air, both good and evil are allotted space in this earth.

God is very specific in His instruction on how we deal with our enemies:

Love them, and pray for them. By God’s grace alone will you be able to do that. Ask the Lord for the strength and for the spirit of forgiveness. When you pray for your enemies, pray that they will know Christ, so they may be transformed towards having Christ-like values. Don’t retaliate to your enemies. God your Father, knows how you feel and in His own time, in His own way, He will give what is due to the other person.

Join 40 days in the Word, Love the Word, Learn the Word, Live the word. https://www.facebook.com/ikthusbacolod?fref=ts

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Worry Is Selfishness in Disguise

September 11, 2014

Sharing Day 104 of the reading plan I am currently on from http://www.joycemeyer.org/ Joyce Meyer: Promises for Your Everyday Life – a Daily Devotional

Worry Is Selfishness in Disguise

Too often, people give in to worry without realizing how deadly it is. When you get to the root of it, worry is a sin. Worry certainly doesn’t come out of faith, and Romans 14:23 (AMP) states that “whatever does not originate and proceed from faith is sin.”

Most of the time, worry is based on one sin in particular: selfishness. Usually when we worry, we’re concerned about how our selfish desires are not being fulfilled. The more selfish desires you have, the more you have to worry about, and the more complicated your life becomes.

God wants us to simply focus on serving Him.

It is God’s will that we live our lives free from all anxiety and distressing care. He wants us to be free to serve Him without being ‘drawn in diverging directions’ (1 Corinthians 7:34 AMP). We must not allow the worries of this world to divert us from His purpose for our lives.

Seek to rid yourself of selfish desires. This will keep your life simple and give you less to worry about. Then you can wholeheartedly pursue God’s great plan for your life.

Prayer Starter: Father God, thank You for showing me that worry is a sin. Help me to get rid of my selfish, ungodly desires so that I can simply pursue Your destiny for me.

And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin. (‭Romans‬ ‭14‬:‭23‬ KJV)

(c) DAVJ

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Making a Decision to Forgive

July 29, 2014

Sharing Day 55 of the reading plan I am currently on from http://www.joycemeyer.org/ Joyce Meyer: Promises for Your Everyday Life – a Daily Devotional

Making a Decision to Forgive

When someone hurts us, we often react as though that individual has stolen from us. We feel that they owe us, yet God wants us to let it go.

If we refuse to forgive, what hope do we have of receiving what we need? To receive from God what He has promised in His Word, we must obey Him, regardless of how difficult it may be. We must forgive.

The greatest deception that Satan has perpetuated in the area of forgiveness is the idea that if our feelings have not changed, we have not truly forgiven. When you decide to forgive someone, don’t let the devil convince you that because you still have the same feelings, you have not really forgiven the person.

You can make the right decision to forgive and not “feel” any differently. That’s when faith steps in. You have done your part, now wait on God. He will do His part and heal your emotions, make you whole, and change your feelings toward the person who hurt you.

Prayer Starter: Lord, I choose to forgive those who have hurt me. I release them from their debt, in Jesus’ name. Heal my heart and make me whole.

And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. (‭Mark‬ ‭11‬:‭25‬ KJV)

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