Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Praying about everything

Sometimes our greatest strengths are also our greatest weaknesses.  One of my greatest personal strengths is that I am a strong independent woman.  One of my greatest spiritual weaknesses is that I am a strong independent woman.

I have gifts and talents in the area of leadership.  I have a graduate degree in educational leadership.  I have been a school administrator for more years than I care to admit. 

And yet, sometimes that independence can have a negative effect on my Christian life.

Here’s an example.  I was praying through a list of requests the other day and I really felt like God was prompting me to pray for myself.  I wondered why.  The people I am praying for really need my prayers right now.  They are not doing well and they need a touch from the Lord.  Yet God kept prompting me the pray for myself.  I thought I am doing fine and then it hit me….

I’ve been doing some study on the topic of prayer in preparation to teach a Sunday School lesson.  I read verses like pray without ceasing.  I know I need to pray.  After all, prayerlessness is a sin.  It’s like telling God that you don’t need him.  You can do it on your own.  You are self-sufficient instead of God-dependent.

This is exactly what God was trying to tell me when I was praying.  I need to pray for others but I also need to pray for myself.  It is an act of submission and surrender to God when we pray for ourselves.  Placing everything I am doing and needing at His feet and asking Him to walk through it with me.  Depending on Him to get me through and not on myself.

I need God every minute of every day and yet I don’t always acknowledge His presence in my life.  This is something I can pray for, not only for myself but for others. 

What about you?  Do you truly rely on the Lord for everything or are you too self-sufficient?  Do you trust Him moment by moment or just run to Him when you are in a crisis?

Monday, October 21, 2013

Train yourself to be godly

1 Timothy 4:6-8

“If you point these things out to the brothers and sisters, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, nourished on the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed. Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.”

How do we train to be godly?

1.  We train to be godly by presenting our bodies as living sacrifices.

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”   Romans 12:1-2

2.  We train to be godly by serving one another.

“You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”   Galatians 5:13-14

3. We train to be godly by watching our thoughts.

“The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”   2 Corinthians 10:4-5

4. We train to be godly by watching our tongue.

“Come, my children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the Lord.  Whoever of you loves life and desires to see many good days, keep your tongue from evil and your lips from telling lies.”   Psalm 34:11-13

5. We train to be godly by fleeing temptations and pursuing good things/behaviors.

“For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness.”   1 Timothy 6:10-11

6. We train to be godly by pursuing holiness.

“Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming. As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.””   
1 Peter 1:13-16

I’m sure there are more verses that could be listed but this is a good start.  Want to take the challenge?  Want to enter training to be godly?

Catching My Breath

To those of you who read my blog fairly consistently, I apologize for the unscheduled sabbatical.  I intended to write many times in the last three months.  Every time I sat down to write something interrupted me or I just didn’t feel led by God to post my thoughts.

It has been an amazing past three months. 

I’ve been extremely busy with the start of a new school year.  The completion of some big projects at work.  (We installed a brand new campus-wide wireless system including a fiber line for internet.) 

I’ve been teaching an adult Sunday School class and that has been amazing.  God teaches me so much as I prepare those lessons each week.  It has truly been a blessing.

My husband and I had an amazing harvest from our garden.  God supplied way beyond what we dreamed and we were able to give away boxes and boxes of produce to needy people in our community.  

Things are finally slowing down and I think I am catching my breath.

While I had the desire to write over the past three months, I felt God telling me it was OK to take a break….to relax…...to learn from Him….to soak it in from Him without feeling a need to give it back out right away….to sit at His feet and learn.  It has been a great time of refreshing my spirit.  Now I feel like the Lord wants me to write again.  So….  get ready…. I’m back.