November 22 – In The Same Way

“Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words” – Romans 8:26 (ESV)

Sometimes each of us struggle with knowing just how and what to pray for. Our circumstances can be overwhelming and we can be at a lost in our need to cry out to God for help. One of the last promises Jesus made to His disciples was that he would send a helper. That promise is fulfilled through the Holy Spirit sent from God our Father. All who have believed in Jesus as their Savior and Lord, and we hope that this is true of you, have the Holy Spirit in their lives. In this verse today, God explains what is going on while we are praying. The Holy Spirit is helping us to pray by praying with us to our Heavenly Father. To start with, we really don’t know in ourselves how we should pray. We do know that if we ask the Holy Spirit to guide us He will impress on our hearts things to pray for and even how to pray. As we pray we can trust the Spirit to pray with us and we can depend on Him. We can also trust that God will hear and answer our prayer.

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June 12 – Just Ask Rightly

“You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.” – James 4:2-3 (ESV)

When we consider what God’s word teaches about prayer, we find that we are to ask—and to ask with humility, sincerity, and love, and with an understanding that God is sovereign and that His will is what we most wish to be done. For Jesus prayed in this way in the Garden of Gethsemane, praying “Father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” (Mark 14:16) It was a bold prayer and Jesus had the courage to ask God to do something humanly impossible. Yet He showed complete submission to the Father’s will. It was God’s sovereign purpose that kept the cup from being removed as Christ prayed. In the same manner, the boldness, childlikeness, and eagerness we demonstrate when asking God to do the impossible are not undermined by His sovereignty; they are mercifully controlled by it. With boldness we too can come before our Father, trusting Him to accomplish all we need and all we ask that is in accordance with His will. We can never ask for something that is too big for God to do. So let’s ask!

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April 12 – Holy Tuesday – Faith Believing

“And Jesus answered them, “Have faith in God. Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours..” Mark 11:22-24 (ESV)

This is Passion Week leading to Easter Sunday. We are considering events that happened in the life of our Lord just before He was arrested, tried illegally, and sentenced by Pilate to die on a cross. It was for us that He allowed all the events to happen. Many events of those few days and much of what Jesus taught that week are recorded in Scripture. Let’s look at one found in the Gospel of Mark. It was Monday morning that Jesus looked for fruit on a fig tree as he left Bethany to go into the City of Jerusalem. There was no fruit so Jesus said there would never again be any fruit on that tree. The next day, Tuesday, as they were passing that way again Peter noticed that the fig tree was all withered from the ground up and amazed he mentioned it. Jesus’ reply teaches the disciples about the power of real faith without doubt. Jesus was anxious to have followers who truly believed in God and who expect God to answer their prayers. Let’s keep his promise and with faith believing pray according to His will expecting God to give us what we ask for.

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 October 2 – Remember, Pray, Joyfully

“I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” – Philippians 1:3-6 (ESV)

Our passage for today comes from the letter sent to members of the body of Christ, believers in Philippi. In the way that all letters from all apostles in the first century, this letter would be shared with churches near to Philippi. Eventually copied and shared to the whole world by being included in the New Testament. At the time Christians who first received this letter lived under Roman government and have very little religious freedoms. Paul’s letter intended to be an encouragement for us. When we experience times of doubt, we might wonder if it is worth it all. So much conflict, aggression, hate, and lies exist in our world. As Christians we too pray for each other just as Paul prayed for the Philippians. What he had heard about them brought Paul much joy. It was a delight for Paul to intercede for fellow believers. Paul had a confidence which is our promise too. It is God who began the work of salvation in our lives and it is God who will complete that job one day, the day of Jesus Christ, which looks to our final salvation, reward, and glorification.

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June 24 – Importance of His Will


“And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us.” 1 John 5:14 (ESV)


Knowing that God has promised eternal life when we believed on the name of the Son of God, gives us confidence and certainty in our lives as Christians. We have a wonderful promise today but we need to be careful to understand it rightly. Many these days speak of “praying” for others. People reach out to friends and friends of friends asking for prayer and receive assurances that the “prayers are being sent up.” But can just anyone who prays know for certain that God even hears? Does God answer and deliver on any and all prayers?” Our verse today gives us confidence that God will hear us but consider this very important condition. “…that if we ask anything according to His will…” To pray according to God’s will is to pray in accord with what He has told us He wants, not simply what we decide or desire we need. God may not respond to prayer made by those who do not believe on Him. God does not respond or answer prayers that are contrary to His will. God hears the prayers which are according to His will, not just according to our will only.

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June 12 – Not Rejected


Blessed be God, Who has not turned away my prayer Nor His lovingkindness from me.” Psalm 66:20 (NASB)

Perhaps there are times when we feel as if God has not heard our prayers or maybe rejected them. God always hears the prayers of those who abide in Him and love Him. As so many of the songs we have in the book of Psalms in our Bible, this is an expression by the writer about what God had done for him. Written many centuries ago we can still believe this promise and it can become our own expression of praise to God. We know that God hears and answers our prayers and even in those times when we receive an answer different than our request, we know that God has not rejected our prayer. He may have answered it in a different way than we expected or hoped, but we know it is in a way that is best for us because He loves us and he does not withhold his love from us. Our promise today is that He has not rejected our prayer, and because he loves us so much, he has given us an answer that is better for us. Let’s trust Him today and enjoy His love for us.

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January 7 – Before Petitions

“Before they call I will answer; while they are yet speaking I will hear. Isaiah 65:24 (ESV)

Each of us carries burdens that drive us to seek help and answers from God. So we talk to Him in our prayers⸺both spoken and thoughts which we address to our Lord God. How then, do we perceive that God hears our prayers? We know He does because the Bible tells us that the effective prayer offered with clear conscience and relationship with God will be answered and bring about much in the way of answers. Sometimes we may talk about heaven being so far away. However, it is within speaking distance to those who belong there. The greater context of this verse is about a time yet to be. But we see a promise in this verse even for us today. We are promised that God knows our prayers before we speak them and he both hears and answers them according to His will⸺as we learn elsewhere in the Scriptures. Whatever we ask, according to God’s will, we receive to the glory of God. So it is in this promise today. God answers before we even call and hears before we even voice our requests. Yet, we continue to pray according to the will of God.

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November 7 – Anxiety: Don’t OD on Worry

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and pleading with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 4:6-7 (NASB)

This is a powerful passage and we have considered its promises before.. It’s is a good time to consider again the instruction that our God has given to us through the inspiration of His Spirit. We seem to be overdosing on anxiety these days. We find it expressed by nearly everyone.  Especially in the United States following the recent Presidential election. Results are up in the air and there is a pretty fierce battle going on. The end results will bring satisfaction to only about half of the American population.  The command is blatantly clear. Do not be anxious for any reason about anything at all. Instead, take the concerns you have to God in your prayers. And in your prayers, plead for what is good and Godly and be thankful God hears your prayers. Then what? Then, a peace that comes from God will stand guard over your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. Garding against the hate, bitterness, worry, and despair that may be filling your time. No, there is no explanation. This peace is beyond our understanding. But it is the Word of God and He promises this peace if we obey these instructions. 

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