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Love Wins

For a couple of years now, I have been telling our grandson, Roscoe, that he is a winner because God loves him. Recently he and his mum were playing a game and he lost. He said to his mum, “God must not love me.” I realized a 3 year old mind cannot comprehend what Romans 8:37 means. As I thought about it, I don’t think most of us understand. The verse says, “We are more than conquerors because of God’s love for us.” This does not mean that in every endeavor and outcome of our lives that we win. It doesn’t mean that bad things will not come our way. It means when we allow God’s love to control our attitudes, motives, and actions that we win. Nothing can get somebody down who allows love to control them.

Jesus said in John 14 that when we obey God’s commands we love. (John 14:15) Love is allowing God’s word to be the guide in our lives. It’s not about just being nice to others, although there is plenty of exhortations to do that in the bible. It’s about being obedient to God’s word. Jesus was completely obedient to the will of his Father and yet everyone was not happy with him. He didn’t please all the people, but he pleased his Father.

Love is about trusting God. It’s about believing he had our best interest in mind when the scriptures were written. It’s funny how we balk at doing what he wants us to do. Mostly it’s the little things that we balk at. For example….be nice to someone we don’t like; witness to people; be obedient and respectful to authority; do what we do because we love God, not to get someone’s attention; doing our best at work and school…The list goes on.

Love needs to be our motivation to do what we do. Keep in mind that because God is love that means he is our motivation. We do what we do because we want to act like him, just like small children imitate their parents. As we trust what his word says, we have a greater understanding of who God is and what love is. Giving ourselves more to him day by day causes us to allow his love to control us. When love controls us, we win because we act like him no matter what the outcome.

Always remember – We are overwhelmingly victorious because of God’s love for us.

The Reality…

Being in meetings where the Word of God is being taught should change us. I realized for myself that we do not get revelation or change unless we purpose to listen and get something out of it. This week is our annual conference. It dawned on me to sincerely press in and ask the Lord to change me and to reveal things that have been hidden to me, my blindspots.

So this morning he showed me some things. It wasn’t pretty, but together He & I can make a difference. My job is to submit to HIm and be thankful for what He reveals to me about me. It’s nice to know the true reason why I react the wrong way to people some times. It is something I teach, but in some areas I haven’t seen what I teach about me.

I have been rude to some people. I kept telling myself that it was something I couldn’t have victory over & I justified it. I blamed it on the people I was being rude to and others. I did not realize I was taking up an offense for someone else, or that the true root of my unkindness was the failures in my own life. You see, when it looks like people I have invested my life into are making wrong decisions, I blame me. I think to myself that I could have done more, or perhaps I focus on the mistakes I might have made with a person. The more I focus on what I could’ve, should’ve done, the more I spiral downward and my actions, or should I say attitudes do not exemplify Christ. That’s when I give people dirty looks or they get the cold shoulder from me or I keep them at arm’s length…..I justify myself in doing so, but I am completely wrong.

The bottom line is that I am not believing the Word of God about myself. I am allowing what I think my failures are to dictate my feelings. The truth it is that it was a blindspot. I did not realize it. I walk around as if I am this wonderful person when inside I am not. I can be kind to some, but not all. God has called me to be kind to all.

Oftentimes, we blame ourselves when something goes wrong in someone else’s life. Their failure becomes our failure. It affects our lives and how we react to others.  Examples of this might be: blaming yourself for your parent’s divorce, for a spouse’s unfaithfulness, for your children’s wrong choices, for a person you have been ministering to wrong choices….Whether it’s something we have done wrong, or something someone else has done and we want to blame ourselves for it, we have to choose to believe what God says about who we are in Christ.

So…if you are having a difficult time with your attitude, with being rude to someone, being unkind for any reason, examine yourself. See if you are in faith about you. Realize you are holy & unblameable in God’s sight. Repent, change your thinking. It will take time and discipline, but it will payoff. We react the way we do because of what we think about ourselves.

I am on the road to recovery in this area of my life. My prayer is that I continually move forward and that you will too.

Don’t wait for people to smile.  Show them how.

Let your guard down.  Talk to someone you don’t know straight from your heart.  Compliment them.  Don’t anticipate awkwardness.  Just be you in that beautiful way only you know and give them the chance to smile and connect with you.

Remember, your best friend was once a stranger too.

Love whoever is around to be loved.
-Kurt Vonnegut

  1. Smile often.
  2. Hold a door open for someone.
  3. Pay for the person in line behind you.

4.      Send a hand-written thank you card to someone who

         assisted you with something.

5.      Clean out all your old clothes and donate them to

         someone in need.

6.     Give a compliment about a waiter, waitress, sales clerk,

         etc. to his or her manager.

7.      Compliment a stranger’s appearance.  Flatter them.

8.            Leave encouraging post-it notes in a library books and

                        other random places.  (Read Operation Beautiful.)

9.             Help an elderly person carry something.

10.             Send flowers to someone anonymously.

11.            Be a courteous driver.  Let people merge in front of you.

12.             Volunteer at a children’s hospital or nursing home.

13.            Donate blood.

14.            Buy house warming gifts for new neighbors.

15.            Introduce yourself.  Make new colleagues, classmates, etc. feel welcome.

16.            Inspire others online.  (Check out Makes Me Think.)

17.            Send letters of appreciation to business owners/managers and other people who support you.

18.            Treat everyone with the same level of respect you’d give to your grandfather.

19.            Give everyone the same level of patience you’d have with your baby sister.

20.            Appreciate people the way they are.

21.            Share your lunch or a snack with someone who doesn’t have one.

22.            Put some change in an expired parking meter.

23.             Check up on someone who looks lonely.

24.            Tell your boss, teacher or professor that he or she is doing a great job and that you appreciate what they’ve taught you.

25.            Create places and things for others to enjoy.  Like decorating your house for the holidays or creating a piece of art.

26.            If you overhear that it’s someone’s birthday, go out of your way to wish them a happy one.

27.            Ask someone for their opinion or advice.

28.            Bring cookies or bagels to work for everyone.

29.            Tip waiters and waitresses well when they deserve it.

30.            Be a part of something you believe in.  Those around you will notice your enthusiasm.  (Read The Alchemist.)

31.            Leave a thank-you note for the office janitors.

32.            Help bag your own groceries at the checkout counter.

33.            Offer your seat to someone when there aren’t any left.

34.            Let someone with only a few items cut you in line at the grocery store.

35.            Wave to a kid in the car next to you.

36.            Spread good news.

37.            Repeat something nice you heard about someone else.

38.            Remember people’s names and address them accordingly.

39.            When you make eye contact with someone, smile.

40.            Replace what you’ve used.  For example, fill up the copier or printer with paper after you’re done using it.

41.            Share your umbrella on a rainy day.

42.            Listen intently to people’s stories without trying to fix everything.

43.            Dance with someone who hasn’t been asked.

44.            Call a stranger’s attention to a beautiful sunset or full moon.  (Check out What Money Cannot Buy.)

45.            Give words of encouragement toward someone’s dream, no matter how big or small it is.

46.            Ask someone who enjoys cooking for a recipe.

47.            Let someone else eat the last slice of pizza or cake.

48.            Stop and buy a drink from a kid’s lemonade stand.

49.            Help someone get your parking space in a crowded parking lot when you’re leaving.

50.            Ask someone you see every now and then if they’ve lost weight.

51.            Do a little something extra to make someone else’s life easier.

52.            Use all the manners you learned in Kindergarten.

53.            Listen to someone’s pain and help them find a path through it.

54.            Give without expecting to get back.

55.            Encourage others to do one unanticipated kind or helpful act at least once a week.

56.            Observe everyone without judging.

57.            Say “Please” and “Thank you.”

58.            Forgive and let go of anger.  For instance, if somebody accidentally cuts you off in traffic, just let it go.

59.            Believe in yourself with all of your heart.  People will notice.

60.            Don’t be so serious all the time.  (Read The Happiness Project.)

61.            Treat every small interaction with another person as an opportunity to make a positive impact in both your lives.

62.            Greed, anger and ignorance.  Avoid all three.

63.            Speak the truth.

64.            Teach others how to make a difference by setting an example.

65.            Help others be independent.

66.            Give people the space they need.

67.            Lend your shoulder to cry on.

68.            Offer encouragement after a failure.

69.            Acknowledge people for a job well done.

70.            Tell a good joke.

71.            Clean up after yourself.

72.            Excel at what you do.  People appreciate professionals.

73.            Create a care package and send it to an active duty military unit.

74.            Redirect gifts.  Instead of having people give you birthday and holiday gifts, ask them to donate gifts or money to a good cause.

75.            Stop to help.  The next time you see someone pulled over with a flat tire, or in need of assistance, stop and ask how you can help.

76.            Put a small personal touch on everything you do.  People notice and appreciate individuality.

77.            Take the time to teach someone a skill you know.

78.            Help someone get active.  There’s a coworker or acquaintance in your life who wants to get healthy, but needs a helping hand.  Offer to go walking or running together, to join a gym together.

79.            Send a nice email to a tech support representative who has assisted you.

80.            Donate food to a charity.

81.            Stand up for someone.  Lend your voice. Often the powerless, the homeless, the neglected in our world need someone to speak up for them.

82.            If you see a couple taking a self-pic, offer to take the picture for them.

83.            Help the weary shopper in front of you who needs that extra two or three cents to avoid breaking a 20-dollar bill.

84.            Come to the rescue.  If you realize someone is sick, bring them some hot tea, etc.

85.            Stand up for your beliefs without flaunting them.

86.            Make yourself available and approachable.

87.            Over-deliver on all of your promises and obligations.

88.            Be positive and focus on what’s right.

 

Taken from:

http://www.marcandangel.com/2011/05/08/88-ways-to-make-a-stranger-smile/

Loving God

Lately I have allowed some situations and people to get the best  of me. Anger rises up inside me, I get stern in an unkind way, my face contorts in unpleasant ways, and at times, I say things I shouldn’t. I know it is wrong. I try to justify myself, but can’t because what I know from the bible convicts me of my wrong. Part of the problem is I am not using God’s Word to control my thoughts. Any time I act in a way I shouldn’t, it is because I have not been allowing God’s thoughts to become my thoughts.

This morning when I woke up I was thinking about what I have been dealing with in my mind. At first I was going to meditate on “love”, but I knew I needed to go to a study I have been working on about the fear of the Lord. You see, when we fear the Lord, we do HIs commands. We comply to HIs ways.

John 14:15 came to mind. Jesus said, “If you love me, you will do my commands.” Pretty simple, but what is HIs command? Matthew, Mark & Luke all share the answer. When asked what was the greatest commandment Jesus answered that we should love the Lord with all of our heart, soul, mind & strength, and that we should love our neighbor as ourselves. He said that all of the law hangs on these two commands.

It’s not complicated. When we love God we will love ourselves and in turn love others. So now I have to ask the Holy Spirit to show me what I do not like about me right now that is causing me to react in an unkind way. Obviously, I am not loving God in these instances and when I allow my thoughts to continue to go in a negative direction. As He reveals this to me, I can repent (change my thinking) about not believing what His word says about me. When I do not believe what His word says about me I am unable to display my love for Him. Then I will take time to think about fearing/respecting God. It is out of my love and respect for Him that I do what is pleasing in His sight.

So…my thought for today is: I show my love for God by abiding by, adhering to, yielding to, obeying His rules, standards, commands & laws.

Baby’s Hug

A lovely lady in our church just sent this to me. It is so sweet and sends a powerful message. Hope you enjoy it.         

We were the only family with children in the restaurant. I sat Erik in a high chair and noticed everyone was quietly sitting and talking. Suddenly, Erik squealed with glee and said, ‘Hi.’ He pounded his fat baby hands on the high chair tray. His eyes were crinkled in laughter and his mouth was bared in a toothless grin, as he wriggled and giggled with merriment. 

I looked around and saw the source of his merriment. It was a man whose pants were baggy with a zipper at half-mast and his toes poked out of would-be shoes. His shirt was dirty and his hair was uncombed and unwashed. His whiskers were too short to be called a beard and his nose was so varicose it looked like a road map. 

We were too far from him to smell, but I was sure he smelled.. His hands waved and flapped on loose wrists. ‘Hi there, baby; hi there, big boy.. I see ya, buster,’ the man said to Erik. 

My husband and I exchanged looks,   
‘What do we do?’ 

Erik continued to laugh and answer, ‘Hi.’ 

Everyone in the restaurant noticed and looked at us and then at the man. The old geezer was creating a nuisance with my beautiful baby. Our meal came and the man began shouting from across the room, ‘Do ya patty cake? Do you know peek-a-boo? Hey, look, he knows peek- a-boo.’ 

Nobody thought the old man was cute. He was obviously drunk. 

My husband and I were embarrassed. We ate in silence; all except for Erik, who was running through his repertoire for the admiring skid-row bum, who in turn, reciprocated with his cute comments. 

We finally got through the meal and headed for the door. My husband went to pay the check and told me to meet him in the parking lot. The old man sat poised between me and the door. ‘Lord, just let me out of here before he speaks to me or Erik,’ I prayed. As I drew closer to the man, I turned my back trying to sidestep him and avoid any air he might be breathing. As I did, Erik leaned over my arm, reaching with both arms in a baby’s ‘pick-me-up’ position. Before I could stop him, Erik had propelled himself from my arms to the man. 
Suddenly a very old smelly man and a very young baby consummated their love and kinship.

Erik in an act of total trust, love, and submission laid his tiny head upon the man’s ragged shoulder.
The man’s eyes closed, and I saw tears hover beneath his lashes. His aged hands full of grime, pain, and hard labor, cradled my baby’s bottom and stroked his back.
No two beings have ever loved so deeply for so short a time. 

I stood awestruck. The old man rocked and cradled Erik in his arms and his eyes opened and set squarely on mine.

He said in a firm commanding voice,  “You take care of this baby”. 

Somehow I managed, “I will”,  from a throat that contained a stone. 

He Pried Erik from his chest, Lovingly and Longingly, as though  HE were in pain.

I received my baby, and the man said, ‘God bless you, ma’am,  you’ve given me my Christmas Gift.’ 
  
I said nothing more than a muttered thanks. With Erik in my arms, I ran for the car.
My husband was wondering why I was crying and holding Erik so tightly,
and why I was saying,   “My God, my God, forgive me”. 
    
I had just witnessed Christ’s love, shown through the innocence of a tiny child who saw no sin,
who made no judgment; a child who saw a soul,  and a mother who saw a suit of clothes.
I was a Christian who was blind,  holding a child who was not.
I felt it was God asking,  “Are you willing to share your son for a moment”?  when He shared His for all eternity. 
How did God feel when he put his baby in our arms 2000 years ago?

The ragged old man, unwittingly, had reminded me,

‘To enter the Kingdom of God , we must become as little children.’ 

I often think about how familiarity breeds contempt or a better word may be disrespect. It is an easy trap to fall into. The fact is that as we grow more familiar with people and our situations we can choose to have more respect or less. Familiarity does not have to breed contempt.

Recently Robert Kayanja ministered at our services. He spoke about Noah’s sons. He pointed out how Ham disrespected his father when he went into Noah’s tent, saw his father drunk & naked, and told his brother about it. His brothers immediately walked backward into the tent with a blanket and covered their father. One of the things Robert pointed out wast that Noah was in his tent which would be like us being in our bedroom. There is nothing wrong with being in our bedroom naked. Another thing he mentioned was that Ham should not have gone into his father’s bedroom like a little child would. Adult children would knock or be invited in. Shem & Japheth chose to respect their father in spite of the fact that he was drunk and naked in his bedroom. They did not allow their familiarity to cause them to  disrespect their father.

Another example is David. He chose to respect KIng Saul even though Saul was attempting to kill him. He respected the office Saul was in as king of Israel. He certainly had plenty of reasons to be disrespectful. He saw Saul at his worst, but he chose a higher road.

It is funny how easy it can be for us to be respectful to people we do not know well. It is easy because we have not seen the everyday side of these individuals. The more everyday life we see in others and situations, the more opportunity we have to be respectful or disrespectful.

In my life, I have the daily opportunity to respect my husband. He is a man who is respected and admired by many. Robb is a pastor, author and speaks to people all over the world. On the other hand, I get to experience the day to day with him. I know his ups and downs. When I choose to look at what I think of as the down side of Robb, I am disrespectful. I get in the flesh toward him and get negative, especially in my thinking. When I choose to see all of his good qualities and admire all he is and has accomplished, I have the utmost respect for him. It is a choice I make.

In everyday life the choice we must make is to be respectful. When we are genuinely respectful, it is an act of kindness.

My prayer is that I am more aware of this in my own life and hope you will be too.

Not Compromising

Not compromising is a kindness. You might be thinking – “What? You have got to be kidding me! How can that be a kindness?” It is looking out for the interest of others. When we choose to think about how what we do may affect someone else, it is an act of kindness.

As Christians, we must choose to be doers of God’s Word. When we get off of it people are watching and it will be used, not just against us, but against walking with God. Paul tells us to follow him as he followed Christ. Jesus showed us that it is possible for humans to please God by acting on his word.

When I compromise by having a bad attitude, it affects others. I know someone who chose not to become a Christian because their neighbors who were Christians (the man was a pastor) fought a lot. He and his wife did not fight. If being a Christian meant you would fight with your spouse, he did not want to have anything to do with it.

I know a man who used to go to clubs. He would see girls from the church he grew up in at the clubs. These girls professed to be born again Christians. They looked no different in their actions than he did, so he figured there was no point in becoming a Christian.

Another example: A family I know has a daycare business. They are in an area where the Muslim population is growing. One of their Muslim customers told them if they did not pray with the children every time they ate that they would have more customers. Let’s face it, if someone went into a Muslim school and said that the Muslim would not even consider it. Unfortunately, how many of us might consider it to bring in more business, especially if business was down? I believe as this family holds on to the principles in God’s Word, it will be a witness to the Muslims. They will see the faith of these Christians and want Jesus. Also, God will bless them because of their trust in him.

Why would someone want to become a Christian, if we do not stand for what we believe in?

Hebrews 10:22-25 tells us to keep the witness of our hope strong and unshaking because as we do, it encourages others to walk in love and have right conduct.

How often do people say, “Well they did it.”? We have to keep in mind that they can say that about positive actions or negative ones. Most of the time the statement is made because of someone’s negative actions. Paul exhorts us to follow those who are not spiritually dull and indifferent; to imitate those who use faith and patience & as a result of it, receive God’s promise.

My encouragement is to be the best example you can be by believing what God’s Word says about you. As you do, others will want what you have and more people will come into the kingdom of God.

I Was One of Them

This article is just the tip of the iceberg of what you will get when you hear Holly Wagner at our Bella Conference October 6-8. Register online at www.fhclife.org  or go to or contact the church – 708-614-6000.

 

Most of us look at fashion magazines and feel depressed shortly afterward. Why? Because we feel as if we can never measure up.  When we look in the mirror our imperfections shout loudly.

“Big pimple in middle of forehead!”

“Serious baggage under eyes!”

“Very large nose!”

“Lots of crow’s feet!”

“Disappearing lips!”

Those women in the magazines look perfect. I would like to let you in on a little secret…shhhh…the women in those photos aren’t perfect either. I know.

 

Because I was once one of them.

 

I showed up on modeling assignments looking anything but perfect. It took: hours of hair and makeup geniuses…hemorrhoid cream on puffy eyes…tape to hold everything together…photoshop to get rid of the pimple… all to create an illusion. Honestly, there were times when the image was so fictitious it might as well have been a cartoon!

 

I recently interviewed Jennifer Strickland who at one time had been a model for the designer Armani. She told stories of the price she, and other young women, paid to look the way designers wanted them to look. There was not one young model she encountered who was not using drugs or dealing with a serious eating disorder.

She told of one model known for her smile.

In fact her smile graced many billboards advertising toothpaste.

She looked ‘perfect’ and happy.

In reality she threw up nine or ten times a day and was desperately unhappy.

She looked in the mirror and saw flaws.

She saw what she wasn’t.

 

I have read articles and heard various news stories of women around the earth who are desperately trying to change themselves into some image of beauty. There are young girls in Japan who are putting steel rods in their legs because they think that taller is beautiful.

Who said?

There are women in India who are paying to have their skin lightened because they think lighter is beautiful.

Who said?

There are some Asian women having surgery to have their eyes made rounder.

Who said that round eyes were more beautiful???

 

Why is it that we always see someone else as more beautiful?

The only way to defeat this way of thinking is to look in the mirror and shout…

Go ahead.

Shout it out loud.

 

I praise you (God) because of the wonderful way you created me. Everything you do is marvelous! Of this I have no doubt. (PS 139)

In fact…why don’t you just whistle at yourself right after you shout!! We were created in the image of our creator and he calls us beautiful…marvelous…every curve, freckle and strand of hair…beautiful.

I get this picture of God right after he created us. He looks at us and does the Italian thing with his fingers against his lips…bellisima…perfecto!!

God has declared that we are marvelous…beautiful.

Yet, we don’t really believe it, so we look and wait for someone else to tell us. Some of us dress in such a way to show every curve…cleavage (if you are lucky enough to have some J)…hoping that someone will say we are beautiful. Your creator has already said it…but I can too…ok…you are beautiful. No matter the shape of your eyes, the size of your nose, the color of your skin, the texture of your hair, or the smoothness of your skin…YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL!!

Most of us have probably seen the movie Shrek. At the end of the movie, after ‘true loves’ kiss, Fiona is disappointed to find out that she did not turn back into the woman, but instead remained an ogre. She looked at Shrek and said “ I was supposed to be beautiful.” He replied, “But you are beautiful.”

You and I have been given true loves kiss.

And He says we are beautiful.

written by Holly Wagner  http://www.godchicks.com/hollys-blog/i-was-once-one-of-them/ 

Hayley DiMarco is an excellent speaker and teacher. Here is a glimpse of what to expect at Bella. Register now.

An apology is a beautiful thing, especially when it’s given to me. But ask me to apologize and I’m just sorry you’re such a sensitive person that what happened hurt you. And I’m sorry you think I did something wrong. My apology is all about you, not about me, because frankly, I don’t do anything wrong. If I do anything that offends, hurts or affects you badly it’s an “accident.” “I couldn’t help it.” “The road was slick,” “the deadline was too quick,” “the oven was too hot.” Most of my life I’ve never taken blame for my mistakes, but blamed the circumstances.  After all, if they had been different, then I wouldn’t have made a mistake. But tell you I was wrong, or that I shouldn’t have done what I did? Confess my stupidity or miscalculation to you? Are you crazy?! I can’t bear such humiliation.

How I’ve gone most of my life never apologizing to anyone, but continually shifting blame to ‘bad conditions,’ is beyond me, but it’s true, and so I confess it now. Not so that you will forgive me, unless of course I’ve done this kind of thing to you, then I ask, “please forgive me for being so self-obsessed,” but to confess ignorance for myself and for all the others out there who don’t know how to apologize like a grown up. It’s a familial thing, runs in the blood.  Adam and Eve started it when they both blamed someone else for their choices, and we all continue it on a daily basis. Which is ironic since the Christian faith rests on the power of confession, which is the best apology in the world. We are not saved till we confess our sins and our inability to save ourselves. And these sins and all the others that follow that original confession, aren’t meant to be hidden away and protected from prying eyes, but boldly brought out into the open to be examined and prayed over by others. The words that best taught me this are found in James 5:16, which goes like this, “confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” (James 5:16, ESV)

Much of my life I have refused the personal insult of an apology, in favor of keeping up the charade of my own perfection, without really knowing the perfecting-power of confession. When I refuse to take the blame, I not only look ridiculous, but I further prepare myself for an even bigger fall.  May I never forget that “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.” (Proverbs 16:18, ESV) And that “everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”” (Luke 14:11, ESV)

I confess my non-apologies, may they never (rarely) happen again.

written by Hayley DiMarco: http://hungryplanet.net/confession/confessions-of-a-bad-apologizer/ 

Just Pray…..

This blog isn’t the typical do something nice for somebody exhortation. It’s doing something good spiritually for someone that could make or break a life. Praying for others should be at the top of our kindness list. The bible tells us to pray for all men everywhere; to pray without ceasing; to pray for those who have been unkind to us and have used us……Praying is being obedient to Holy Spirit, especially when He nudges us to pray.

 

Here is an example from my own life that I hope encourages you concerning the importance of prayer and responding immediately when we are asked by the Lord to pray.

 

Every year on September 11 I am reminded about the importance of prayer and responding to the Holy Spirit when He nudges us to pray. On September 11, 2001 me and a group of our leaders were headed to a meeting. I really felt we were all supposed to pray in the Holy Spirit as we drove, but I kept putting it off since we were enjoying each other’s company. I reasoned that it was important for us to build relationships as a team and that praying could wait. While en route we received a call that told us Tower 1 of the World Trade Center had just been struck by an airplane. Of course, we were all stunned and then we began to pray. When we reached our destination televisions were on showing what happened. As we watched, the second plane hit the other tower. Needless to say we left the meeting and went back to the office because we were unable to concentrate and wanted to pray and check on loved ones. I will never know what may have been prevented had I been obedient to the Holy Spirit. How many lives might have been saved, if I would have prayed?

 

On the other hand, I know a pastor’s wife who was instructed by the Holy Spirit to pray. At first she did not know what for, but then He revealed to her what she was praying about. He told her she was praying for a soldier in Iraq and gave her his name. She did not know him, but prayed. A week or so later she saw the young man’s name in the newspaper. It told the story of his bravery and how he was kept safe.  The incident occurred on the day she was praying. What if she had not been obedient? Perhaps this young man and many others might have died, but because she prayed he was protected.

 

So often when Holy Spirit asks us to pray, we do not know why or what for, but He does. Our job is to pray. Our prayers have great power, are effective and have wonderful results (James 5:16).

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