Prayers are Powerful and Effective if Prayed from the Position of a Righteous Heart!

The reality is, our prayers don’t change God. But I am convinced prayer changes us, and it brings us into authentic connection with God. Prayer opens our spiritual eyes to see things we can’t see on our own. And I’m convinced prayer matters. Prayers are powerful and effective if prayed from the position of a righteous heart (James 5:16). I don’t know what your story is; I don’t know all that you’re going through but I want to encourage you today and let you know that there is power in prayer. God doesn’t want you to worry about today or tomorrow; instead He wants you to pray about everything and to make your request known to Him.

Let me encourage you to take God up on His word. I can attest to the incredible power of prayer as I have witnessed God’s unmerited favor in my walk with Him. Not because I deserve it; but simply because I went before His throne and keep, asking, seeking, and knocking(Matthew 7:7). I come to tell you that God still answers prayer; that there is power in prayer. Just be diligent; consistent and have faith.

However, until you see your prayer manifest, continue to believe, have faith and to thank God in advance for answering your prayer. Remember, seek  first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and everything else will be added unto you.(Matthew 6:33) Don’t lose hope child of God, there is power in prayer.

You come from God and belong to God!

Our lives in Christ are meant to be extraordinary, incredible, meaningful and purposeful but never trouble-free. God keeps you in the pressure-cooker of life so others can see how a life connected to Jesus confronts problems in a very different way than a life that is disconnected from Jesus. Have a wonderful day relaying on the Holy Spirit to guide and lead you.

“My dear children, you come from God and belong to God. You have already won a big victory over those false teachers, for the Spirit in you is far stronger than anything in the world.”  ~  1 John 4:4

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We are empowered by the Holy Spirit and that gives us the ability to respond to hardship like people from the kingdom of heaven — not like people seemingly abandoned by God or in rebellion to God or unaware of God or unrepentant before God.

When we think God is not involved in our circumstances, we respond with problems with defensiveness, blame, shame, anger, hatred, pride, fear and self-centeredness. Anybody can do that. Anybody not connected to Jesus.

Jesus will have none of that and so he pushes us to a choice: Do you trust that I am involved in your circumstances or not?

When we respond from our human nature, instead of submitting to the divine nature working within us, we expose a deep, inner distrust of Jesus. Our actions show we believe Him incapable of understanding the stress and danger of life (a bold belief considering Jesus died hanging on the cross for you and I).

On the other hand, when we respond from the truth that we are connected to Jesus, we prove that we believe he that is within us is greater than he who is in the world. (1 John 4:4)

The Power of Faith!

In the scripture for today’s word, Jesus teaches us how to release our faith so that it can work on our behalf to bring about the things that we need. Jesus told the disciples that if they had faith, they could say what they wanted to see come to pass, and then they would have it. This means that we are to speak those things that we have the faith for; and then we should expect to receive what we have spoken. Our mouths have the ability to create… this is especially true when we confess with our mouth based on what we believe in our heart.

 

Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?” So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.”~ Matthew 17:19-20

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It’s amazing to me how faith can be so tiny, and yet be so powerful that if it is used effectively can move something as massive as a mountain. Nevertheless, that is exactly what Jesus said, and He didn’t exaggerate. This tells us that faith is powerful. Therefore, when we declare those things that we need to happen in our lives, we must stand in faith.

Furthermore, when we choose to respond to a negative report or a bad situation in faith, we are empowered to move forward to victory over the enemy that has attacked us. In other words, faith will help us walk “out of” problems that might otherwise try to hold us captive. Instead of accepting an evil report as the final word for this season of our lives, we must choose to stand on God’s Word in faith and trust in God’s plan to bring us through victoriously.

If you’ve hit a seemingly impossible situation, and everything in your soul is telling you that it won’t pass, then make a conscious decision to stand by faith. Many Christians are living in bondage to past situations simply because they don’t know how to “choose to respond” by faith and walk out of the pit of hopelessness. If you see yourself as more than a conqueror through Christ, you will be more than a conqueror. Faith works, but you have to work it!

Obey God!

Obedience to God is the heartbeat of Jesus. He learned and modeled obedience, and suffering was the development in which His obedience grew. The best lessons we learn seem to come out of suffering. Anyone can obey when it is easy, but in the fire of adversity and pain, our obedience is put to the test. Will we obey even when it hurts, even when it costs us dearly, even when we don’t want to, even when we are uncertain of the outcome? Obedience’s tests unmask our motives; untested obedience may just be the result of convenience.

“Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him…~ Hebrews 5:8-9
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 So, be prepared to obey, just because you know it is the right thing to do, when no one else but God will ever know. He is watching to see if we will obey Him when no one else knows.  Jesus knows from first-hand experience that obedience is what makes us more like Him. We experience Him in our acts of obedience; He assures us in our obedience; He loves us in our obedience; He empowers us in our obedience; God shows up in the middle of our obedience. It is so important to Him, that He makes it a priority to bless our obedience. His blessing may not be recognized immediately. It may take months or years before we enjoy the fruit of our obedience.

Please share this blog with others and I pray that it encourages you and many others in the name of Jesus! 

Weathering the Storms of Life!

Do you know that every problem and troubling situation believers face in this life is allowed by God for a specific purpose. He is working out something far greater than what appears to be happening as He guides the process of transforming you into the image of Christ. Your faith is being sharpened as a sword to equip you for the battles of this world.  The path of victory has already been set and there is nothing that can destroy a believer who has put his faith in the cross of Jesus.  We are commanded to be anxious for nothing and no one.  But, is that still possible when the darkness of the storm surrounds us? Yes God can deliver us from the storms of life or take us through them, giving us the strength and courage we need. Do you find yourself in a storm today? Ask God for the strength and courage to weather it and for the wisdom to understand it, not waste it.


 “He calmed the storm to a whisper and stilled the waves. What a blessing was that stillness as he brought them safely into harbor! ~~Psalm 107:29-30
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The truth is that the strength to endure every painful trial is with you in Christ. You may be feeling weary and completely overwhelmed but the bible tells us that God is close to the broken-hearted and he is near to us in our pain. He does not abandon you when your situation is bleak. As you lift up your fears to him in thankfulness and prayer, you allow his power to be unleashed in your life as he takes your struggle and makes it work into his perfect plan for you. God knows your weaknesses and has seen your failures yet his power is  more than enough to take you safely through.  You may be wounded but you will never be destroyed!

Take heart my friends and know without a doubt the struggles and trials you suffer are always an opportunity for God to reveal his power to you. It is being worked out in the timing of God who already knows the outcome.  Each time a painful situation brings you to your knees, use that position to give glory to God! It frustrates the devil when you do. Never let the enemy convince you to surrender in the heat of battle for you are nowhere near being defeated. You have been made more than a conqueror through Christ and he is not about to let you fail.
***************************************************************Please share this blog with others so that they may know Christ and His Father’s unending and ever faithful love!

“Life is hard. But God is good.” (When the Way Gets Tough)

Life is hard. But God is good.”…. But just because something is cliché doesn’t mean it’s not true. Life is hard. Pain comes to us all!

Adversity and trials are par for the course. Each of us will encounter those places in the journey when it becomes extremely tough. We will be tempted to quit, to give in to the despair and give up. To cast aside our faith as something meaningless and ineffectual. But during those times we need to remember the second part of the phrase. Yes, life is hard… But God is good! All the time. Hold fast to your faith. More importantly, hold fast to Him. The clouds may have grown dark in your life. The wind may be blowing and the rain is pouring down. But I promise you that He will not fail you. More importantly, He promises you that He will not fail you. He is a very present help in your time of trouble. 

 

Psalm 46:1-2, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change…”

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If you have walked the road of life for any length of time, you have encountered your share of bad news, dark days, and tough places in the road. All of us have had to deal with pain at some point (some more than others). The sun doesn’t always shine. The flowers don’t always bloom. The harvest is not always plentiful. Night comes. Winter comes. Seasons of famine come. To all of us. Much like our God, pain and adversity are no respecter of persons. Young or old. Rich or poor. Male or female. We will all encounter those tough places in the journey of life. 

 

In fact, the Bible tells us it to us like this in 1 Peter, “Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you.” On this side of eternity we will experience trials, testings and temptations. We shouldn’t be surprised when our turn comes. But that doesn’t mean we can’t make it through the tough places and the difficult times.

 

Tough times do not minimize the reality of God. Rather, they MAGNIFY our need of Him!!! When the tough times come don’t make the mistake of turning away from God. Don’t turn inward. Don’t allow the adversity to turn you against Him. Rather, turn to Him. He is our refuge when the storm winds blow. He is our strength when the bad news has knocked us down. He is a very present help in our times of trouble!!!

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A Living Hope!

My friends, begin today to walk the steps of faith. Surrender your troubles to the One who can lift you above them all.  Let God’s strength fill you and give you peace for He has given His angels charge over you. You were never meant to carry your burdens alone. No matter what heartache or pain you have now, the peace of Christ can be still be yours if you trust it all to Him. Remember that Christ death and resurrection were part of His plan. He knew that we were hopelessly lost and prisoners of sin. He provided a way that will keep us in peace on this earth and take us through to the glory of heaven forever. Jesus left the grave!  He is alive within the hearts of all believers. His power is yours forever! Jesus is a living hope and he will always make a way to help you.

  “Why do you look for the living among the dead?” (Luke 24:5)            Image                 

We each have our own idea of how we think God should help us in the problems of this life. Most of us have a pre-conceived notion of what is good for God to do for us. Unfortunately, when God does not work things out as expected, many believers let seeds of doubt  fill their mind. Fear is given reign in their lives instead of the risen Christ. Weary from the battle, many give up hope reacting as though Christ were still in the tomb instead of being alive with full authority over everything. They search for the living in the dead areas of their lives. The enemy’s lies become real for them. Our trust in the trials we face is not based on that which can be seen. The bible tells us in Hebrews 11:1 that , “Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”  If you were able to see and understand everything that God is permitting in your life, you would have no need for faith. Without faith, it is not only impossible to please God, it is impossible to know the God you serve! We have to remember in every storm of life that Christ is at the center and He permits only that which fulfills His will for you. You may not like the attacks that come against you, but they are powerful tools used to equip you for eternal victory. You will never be able to stand in the struggles of life if you do not have the knowledge of God’s power and a belief that He will not fail you. In the time of testing, the enemy is going to pull out all the stops to tempt you to think that you are beyond help. He is going to fill your mind with thoughts of failure and defeat. Unless you are firmly grounded in the truth of God’s love and His power in your battles, you will not have the strength to fight. Keep pressing forward!  Keep believing and move ahead into your destiny into the plans the Lord has for you!