Saturday, November 17, 2012
Psalm 71:15 My mouth shall tell of Your righteousness And Your salvation all the day, For I do not know their limits.
I'm so thankful that I know the Lord and that every day something new about Him unfolds before my very eyes. The Psalmist said of the Lord's righteousness and salvation: “For I do not know their limits.”
God is so vast and multifaceted that we can never exhaust His greatness. We can never know Him completely. There is always something new and exciting that He wants to reveal to us.
Psalm 68:19 Blessed be the Lord, Who daily loads us with benefits, The God of our salvation! Selah
God daily loads us with benefits! Every day is a new day with the Lord, filled with His goodness that He longs to bestow upon His children!
Lamentations 3:22-24 Through the LORD's mercies we are not consumed,Because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I hope in Him!”
It's easy with all the turmoil that is going on around us for us to take a negative outlook at our future. It's at these times that we need to look into God's Word and see His character and nature. He is a loving Father who longs to bless His children. When it looks like things are going down the tube, we need to reach out and take the hand of the One who loves us the most and died that we might live!
Psalm 91:1, 2 HE who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.”
Do you dwell in the secret place of the Most High? That simply means that you have a living and vital relationship with Him; that you know Him and commune with Him regularly; that you share your heart with Him and seek Him as your all in all and live your life as unto the Lord. God desires that we trust Him; that we look to Him for direction and seek His face, His will and not just come to Him in the time of trouble. He wants to commune with His children! We can trust Him to take care of us!
Psalm 91:14-16 “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him, And show him My salvation.”
The word “deliver” in Psalm 91:14 means “to carry over the trap to a safe place; to a high place. When we come to the Lord in fear of what is happening to us or around us and place our trust in Him, He comes on the scene to help us. Now in verse 15 we see the same word “deliver”, but this is a different Hebrew word and it means “to equip for victory in battle.” God not only runs to our rescue in the time of trouble, but He equips us to win the battle; we are assured of the victory when we place our trust in Him.
When the battle is raging around you; run to the Rock of your salvation!
In my younger years when I was just beginning to walk by faith, when I would be afraid, I would find scriptures that told of God's goodness and faithfulness and highlight them in my Bible. Then I would read them out loud to strengthen my spirit man. It's what you focus on that will become the biggest in your mind. If you don't stop the negative, fearful thoughts from coming into your mind and replace them with positive, faith-filled thoughts, you will find yourself fearful and expecting the worst all the time. Fear opens the door for the enemy to come in because it is like faith to him. Job feared what would happen in his life and then said that it was his greatest fear that had come upon him.
Job 3:25, 26 For the thing I greatly feared has come upon me, And what I dreaded has happened to me. I am not at ease, nor am I quiet; I have no rest, for trouble comes.”
Are you expecting bad things to happen in your life? Or, are you placing your trust in the Rock of your salvation?
I got up this morning with this song on my heart. I pray that it will bless you as much as it has me.
Psalm 118:21, 22 I will praise You, For You have answered me, And have become my salvation. The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone.
Jesus was rejected as Messiah by His own and yet He died to save each and every one of us. He has become the chief cornerstone; the One on which all of salvation is built. His gift of redemption is so vast we can't, in our finite minds, even imagine the broad scope of it. But, even though we might not comprehend it intellectually that doesn't stop us from receiving it because everything that we receive from God comes through faith. Faith is not an intellectual assent or knowledge that we possess, it is a trust that believes what God says over our circumstances and then acts on that belief until we see it with our natural eyes.
Proverbs 18:10 The name of the LORD is a strong tower; The righteous run to it and are safe.
Are you safe in the strong tower of the Lord this morning? Or do you feel like you are out there in enemy territory just waiting for your demise? Run to the Lord; He will save you!
Psalm 61:3,4 For You have been a shelter for me, A strong tower from the enemy. I will abide in Your tabernacle forever; I will trust in the shelter of Your wings. Selah
Father, I come before You this morning to declare that You are my hiding place. You are the Rock of my salvation, my stronghold in the time of trouble, my refuge from the storm and my high fortress in which I hide from my enemies. I thank You for providing so great a salvation that I can run to You and be safe. Thank You for loving me and saving me. Thank You for daily loading me with good things to benefit me. Thank You for being my God, the One that I can run to when I am afraid. Thank You for delivering me from my enemies and for protecting me from those who seek to harm me. Thank You, Lord, for being the chief cornerstone upon which I can build my faith. You are worthy to be praise and adored, for You are My Savior and my Lord!
Father, I lift up to You those who may be in harm's way this morning; those who are fearful and distressed over what is happening in their lives or to their loved ones. Father, I ask that You would give them peace in the midst of the storm; that You would protect them from their enemies and deliver them from harm. Father, I pray for peace in the Middle East and that Your people would be able to dwell in safety! I ask You to stop the fighting and establish harmony in those countries. I pray that they would turn to the One true God and accept You, Lord Jesus, as their Prince of Peace, their Savior and Lord.
Father, I thank You for watching over Your children and for providing for their every need. I give You praise because I know You; I can trust You to rescue and deliver from harm. Thank You for hearing and answering the prayer that I offer up to You in the name of Jesus! Amen.
Friday, November 16, 2012
Deuteronomy 29:29 “The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.
“Let not your heart be troubled, Child. You are not responsible for giving a reason why I act in a certain way or why I allow certain things to happen. There are some things that are just mysteries to you; things that I have hidden from human knowledge. You are not responsible to explain My actions to anyone.
You are responsible to turn eyes to Me; to reveal the love that I have for My children. You are responsible to be the light that others can look to for direction into a relationship with Me. I have asked you to be a minister of reconciliation to those who are lost and without hope in a dark world. You are responsible for praying for your leaders and for speaking positive, faith-filled words that will encourage and uplift the hearers. You are responsible for praying.
Do the things that I have asked you to do, Child, and do not cross over the line to try to explain what only I know. Hold your position steadily and surely, firmly planted on the Rock of your salvation and I will reveal things as I see fit. Do not worry about tomorrow but live each day as if tomorrow will never come. I will take care of the rest. Trust Me and lean on Me. I will do My part if you will do yours. You do not have to know all the answers to everyone's questions. It is okay to be human and not divine! People look to you for answers but you simply must acknowledge that you are human and only the Divine holds all the answers to every question of mankind. You are My representative. Fulfill your purpose and responsibility with confidence for I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Father, I thank You that I do not have to give an answer for Your actions. Father, You are God and there is none above You nor beside You. To You belong the secret things and I am only responsible for doing what You have called me to do. I thank You that I am in partnership with You, Lord, and You are the One who calls the shots, who gives the orders and I am the one who follows Your direction. May I never feel that I have to be the One who is responsible for the results, for You have said in Your word that one plants the seed, another waters it, but You, Lord, are responsible for granting the increase. The results are Your responsibility, Father, and I am only responsible for what You have called me to do. Father, I pray that we all will realize that some things just can't be explained, but that we must always trust You to do what is best for us. Help us to rest in that knowledge, Lord, and to trust You to bring into our lives exactly what You have planned for us in the good plan that You have promised. Thank You, Father, for setting my heart at ease! In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.
Thursday, November 15, 2012
Acts 2:25-28 For David says in regard to Him, I saw the Lord constantly before me, for He is at my right hand that I may not be shaken or overthrown or cast down [from my secure and happy state]. Therefore my heart rejoiced and my tongue exulted exceedingly; moreover, my flesh also will dwell in hope [will encamp, pitch its tent, and dwell in hope in anticipation of the resurrection]. For You will not abandon my soul, leaving it helpless in Hades (the state of departed spirits), nor let Your Holy One know decay or see destruction [of the body after death]. You have made known to me the ways of life; You will enrapture me [diffusing my soul with joy] with and in Your presence.
This scripture refers to David when speaking prophetically of the Lord Jesus when he says that he saw the Lord constantly before me. What a beautiful picture of trust! Can you say that you see the Lord constantly before you? Or is your constant image that of fear of what might happen in the future? He said that picture that He placed before Him is what caused Him to not be shaken or overthrown or cast down from His secure and happy state.
You know, some of the things that we see happening around us right now may have a tendency to cause us to be shaken from our security. It would be easy to focus on the impossibility of our world to ever change; but this scripture goes on to give us the anchor that we need to use to hold us in stability as we wait in constant anticipation of the Resurrection or the return of the Lord. That key is to encamp or dwell in hope in anticipation of what God is going to do in the lives of His children. To dwell in the hope that God is in control of the things that we see as enemies of our future security and happiness.
He goes on to say that the reason that Jesus could hope in anticipation of not being left in that helpless state is that He knew that God would not abandon Him. Do you rest in the assurance that God will not abandon you or leave you in a state of destruction?
“You will enrapture me [diffusing my soul with joy] with and in Your presence.”
You see the key to living in a state of security when it seems that all around you is falling down is to allow God to enrapture you with His joy with and in His presence.
Back in the 17th century there was a Frenchman who served as a cook in a monastery. His name was Nicholas Herman, or otherwise known as Brother Lawrence. He wrote a book called, “The Practice of the Presence of God”. In it he described how he wanted to live every moment with an overwhelming sense of God's presence and how that changed his life. He was consumed with love for God and wanted to perform every task, no matter how insignificant, purely for the love of God. He lived in God's presence, aware of Him in every activity of life and so was enraptured with the joy of the Lord that he had a calm assurance that God was with him through every activity of his life, both the good and the bad.
“The time of busyness does not differ with me from the time of prayer; and in the noise and clatter of my kitchen, while several persons are at the same time calling for different things, I possess God in as great tranquility as if I were on my knees.” ~ Brother Lawrence
Can you say, as Brother Lawrence said, that you possess God in as great a tranquility whether you are experiencing the noise and clatter of things that try to shake you as you do when you are on your knees in prayer?
Paul said it this way when speaking of his trials and persecutions in Acts 20:24:
“But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself,....”
Paul later went on to say to Timothy when encouraging him to preach the word, in season and out, that even though you experience adversity and people come against you, the key to his success was in the Lord standing with him and strengthening him.
2 Timothy 4:16-18 At my first defense no one stood with me, but all forsook me. May it not be charged against them. But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that the message might be preached fully through me, and that all the Gentiles might hear. Also, I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen!
Paul knew the presence of God even when everyone else forsook him. He knew that God was right there in the midst of the trouble to strengthen him and deliver him. He had the calm assurance that the Lord would deliver him from the evil work that was trying to destroy him and that He would preserve him for His heavenly kingdom. That calm assurance came from practicing the presence of God in every moment of every one of Paul's days.
Stephen is another one that practiced the presence of God. His story is found in Acts 7:54-60:
When they heard these things they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed at him with their teeth. But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God, and said. “Look! I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!” Then they cried out with a loud voice, stopped their ears, and ran at him with one accord; and they cast him out of the city and stoned him. And the witnesses laid down their clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul. And they stoned Stephen as he was calling on God and saying, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Then he knelt down and cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not charge them with this sin.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
If you were standing before a group of terrorists that were intent on taking your life could you say as Stephen said “Lord, do not charge them with this sin”? The key to Stephen handing the crowd coming against him and stoning him is found in verse 55: “But he, being full of the Holy Spirit”. You become filled with the Holy Spirit as you receive Him in His fullness initially through the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, but also through your daily communion with Him. By practicing His presence you receive a fresh infilling on a moment by moment basis. Stephen, even while being stoned, was able to gaze into the heavenlies and see the Son of Man, Jesus, standing at the right hand of God. I think it's interesting that this scripture pictures Jesus standing when in Mark 14:62 Jesus, Himself, said that they would see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, or God. He said again in Luke 22:69:
“Hereafter the Son of man will sit on the right hand of the power of God.”
And yet, Stephen saw Him standing at the right hand of God. I believe that when Stephen stood in faith for the truth of God and was stoned for it that he got the attention of the Son of God so strongly that Jesus stood up on Stephen's behalf. He stood to attention to receive Stephen into the presence of God as he was persecuted and stoned for his faith. You can be assured that if He did that for Stephen that He will do it for any one of His children who faithfully stand in their faith while being persecuted!
Paul told Timothy that “all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.” But even in the midst of his own persecution he said, “And out of them all the Lord delivered me.” (2 Timothy 3:11, 12)
Regardless of whether we suffer persecution in the days ahead of us or simply experience the challenges of life, the key to us living in peace and security within ourselves is in practicing the presence of God; living a lifestyle of being constant in prayer. We can know that God is with us and will deliver us by either strengthening us through the persecution or removing us from it.
Father, I thank You for equipping us through Your presence to meet any challenge that might lay before us. Thank You for the fullness of joy that comes as we draw near to You. May we practice that presence of God every moment of every day that we might be able to stand firm in faith when we are challenged or persecuted for our faith. Thank You for fully equipping us to be victorious throughout all of life's tribulations. Father, I pray for my friends today who may be struggling with insecurities. Father, I pray that they will draw near to You and experience Your presence as a blanket of warmth and reality around them. Reveal Yourself to them at this difficult time in their lives, Father. Show them Your constant love that is around them to comfort and strengthen them. Thank You for making Yourself real to them through the presence of Your Spirit within. May we each be strong in You, Lord, for whatever may lay ahead of us. May we not give up and quit in our fighting the good fight of faith! In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Psalm 127:2 It is vain for you to rise up early, To sit up late, To eat the bread of sorrows, For so He gives His beloved sleep.
I had something on my mind as I went to sleep last night that caused me to stay up later than usual and when I went to bed I had difficulty going to sleep. Then I slept a little later than usual this morning so when I got up I felt as if I was already running behind and wouldn't have enough time to get everything done on my agenda for today! As I was praying about these situations the Lord reminded me that He doesn't expect us to solve the problems of the world; He expects us to trust Him and lie down to sleep in peace.
The word for “sorrows” in that verse means “anxiety”. Worrying causes people to lose sleep; valuable rest that their bodies need to function and keep them from succumbing to sickness and disease. Worry is like a cancer that grows without restraint. As Erma Bombeck and others have said: “Worry is like a rocking chair; it gives you something to do, but it doesn't get you anywhere.”
Jesus was a little more adamant about worry and it's consequences when He gave us these instructions about it in Matthew 6:25:
“Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?”
The Greek word for “worry” is the word merimnao and it means “to divide into parts”. The word suggests a distraction, a preoccupation with things causing anxiety, stress, and pressure.
Worry divides your mind into parts! It cause anxiety, stress, pressure. You aren't able to put things into proper perspective because your mind is flitting here and there, thinking about the “what ifs” in life. What if I can't make it through this situation? What if I don't have enough money to provide for what I need? What if.....what if....WHAT IF! And everyone knows that the “what ifs” are much larger at night than they are in the day. Our minds seem to run crazy with worry in the night hours. Problems are much more difficult when trying to solve them during the night!
Matthew 6:27-30 “Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin; “and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” “Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?”
Can you change your height; add to it, or grow taller through worrying? No, we all know that worrying can't add an inch to our height. Jesus is saying that it's useless to worry because worrying doesn't change anything! God takes care of His own. The flowers out in the field don't do anything and yet God provides for them. He made them and He takes care of them. Don't you think you are of more importance to Him than a flower? Will He not be more diligent to care for His child?
He calls those who worry, “O you of little faith”. The Greek word for “little faith” in that verse is the word “oligopistos” It is a combination of two words “oligos” meaning “small” and “pistos” meaning “faith”. It describes a faith that lacks confidence or trust too little. Another way to term it is “under-developed faith” as opposed to outright unbelief or distrust.
We all grow in our faith walk through progression. Some of us may be strong in faith in one area and still have weaknesses that we are working on to develop a stronger faith. We believe for things as we have need of them. Faith to meet life's challenges comes through hearing the word of God.
Romans 10:17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
Now I don't believe that means just hearing any part of God's word. I believe it's specific to your need. If you need provision for finances, then you need to search out God's word on how He provides for your financial needs and focus on those particular scriptures. Meditate on them; speak them over and over to yourself speaking out loud so your ears hear the scriptures until your heart receives them as truth and you begin to respond to your situation with faith believing that what God has said is true. The same thing goes for your need for physical healing. God has provided for all of our needs in the crucifixion of Jesus, His only Son. He paid the price that we might have the provision that we need. Get into God's word and find the scriptures that apply to your particular situation and then begin to claim them as yours.
Matthew 6:31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink? Or 'What shall we wear?'
Worrisome thoughts are made your own through what you say! “What are we going to do....” “What if....” “Are we going to have enough....” “Will I make it through this?”
Instead of taking the thought of worry captive and bringing it into obedience to the truth of God's word, we often dwell on the negative and speak out of our fears. That ties God's hands from being able to bring the provision for your need because He is moved by faith, not fear! Fear is “false evidence appearing real” and is to the devil what faith is to God. The devil is moved by our fears. He is ready and willing to bring into existence what we are fearing. God is pleased when we believe that He is who He says He is and that we believe that He rewards those who diligently seek Him. Faith is the vehicle that brings into manifestation the promises of God in your life.
Matthew 6:31-34 “Therefore do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?” or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' “For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”
God knows your needs. Seek Him first; seek His righteousness in providing for His own. He has the answer to all of life's problems. Trust Him to provide for you. Don't worry about the future because each day has enough challenges. Don't borrow from tomorrow's cares; take each day at a time. Worry robs a person of valuable strength that they could be using to plan wisely for the future. There are some things we can do to prepare for what lies ahead; we can pray; we can study God's word to know what is ours according to His promises; we can manage our finances well, planning for future expenses; we can take care of our physical bodies, eating the right things that bring good nourishment into our bodies; we can live wisely and we can REST; trusting Him to take care of the things that we have no control over!
Father, I thank You for providing for our every need. You have not forgotten anything, Father, and You know what lies ahead of us, the challenges that we will face. I thank You for going before us into each one of them and preparing us for success in them. Thank You for being our God; our Provider; our Healer; our Need Meeter! Thank You for blessing us with all good things. Father, I pray for my friends this morning who may be facing challenges in which they see no way out. Father, I pray that You will give them the assurance that they can trust You to provide for this need in their life. Father, I ask You to give them the scriptures that they need to focus on that will give them peace and comfort as they stand firm believing in faith that You will meet this need. Thank You, Father, for hearing and answering my prayer for I believe I receive when I pray. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Romans 15:5-7 Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus, that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore receive on another, just as Christ received us to the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 1:10 Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.
My heart is saddened by what I see happening in the Body of Christ, where we have believers fighting against one another over political parties and candidates. The past election seems to have brought out the worst in those who call themselves “Christians”. It has gotten to the point where I wonder if Jesus died in vain when the Word tells us in Ephesians 5:25-27 that He loved the church so much that He died that He might sanctify her and wash her clean by the word so He could present to Himself a glorious church, without spot or wrinkle; holy and without blemish. This is not what I see in the Body of Christ today. There are those who simply cannot understand why our President was re-elected and bash those who voted for him as if they are totally responsible for the ungodly nation that we have become. And then there are those who can't believe that people who call themselves “Christians” would vote for someone who they feel was running to promote the rich and famous. The mud-slinging has been really bad throughout this election process but it is continuing on even after the election has taken place.
Paul addressed discontentment within the Body of Christ in Romans by admonishing believers to receive one another as Christ received us. The Word tells us that Jesus demonstrated His love for us by giving His very own life for us when we were yet sinners. (Romans 5:8) He didn't ask us to wash ourselves clean so we would be acceptable to Him. But He died for us when we were at our worst and then He cleaned us up by washing us through the Word. His blood provided the payment for our sin that we might be the righteousness of God in Him. It is as we yield ourselves to the Word and His Spirit within us that we can come together as brothers and sisters in Christ and live before the world as that Church of holiness that we will be able to glorify God with one mind and one mouth. As long as we are fighting within ourselves we will not be able to show the world that we are His because Jesus said they would know we are His disciples by our love for each other.
John 13:34, 35 “A new commandment I give you you, that you love one another. “By this will all know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
How can the lost come to know Jesus when the Church is fighting among themselves? How can they see that we belong to Him when we do not have love for one another?
2 Timothy 3:1-5 But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come; For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!
Verse 5 in the New Living Translation says this: They will act as if they are religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. You must stay away from people like that.
Perilous times forecasted as being a sign of the last days will put pressure on people that causes them to act in ways that are not indicative of loving, Christian behavior. They will act religiously, but they will reject the power of the Holy Spirit who works in them to change them into the reality of their Christianity. These are the things that we must be aware of and overcome to continue to endure to the end. These are temptations that will come upon us that we have to resist so the world will see that Jesus lives within us and be drawn to Him. How can a light shine brightly when the lens is covered with dirt and mud? And yet we are to be the light shining into the darkness that leads the world to Jesus.
Paul urged Timothy to preach the word of God in season and out of season because there would come a day when people would no longer listen to right teaching.
2 Timothy 4:2-4 NLT Preach the word of God. Be persistent, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching. For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to right teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever they want to hear. They will reject the truth and follow strange myths.
Hebrews 4:12, 13 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.
The Word of God changes peoples hearts! It cuts out the bad and shines a holy light on what needs to be changed. But when people run from one “feel good” meeting to another they come away with only the goose bumps of the evening, no change of heart, still believing a lie and treating other believers as if they are the enemy. Nothing that is taking place today is hidden from God's eyes. And we will all stand before Him one day and give account for our behavior toward each other.
We must heed the Word today and begin to treat our brothers and sisters in Christ with love and respect.
Ephesians 5:1-2 NLT Follow God's example in everything you do, because you are His dear children. Live a life filled with love for others, following the example of Christ, who loved you and gave Himself as a sacrifice to take away your sins. And God was pleased, because that sacrifice was like sweet perfume to Him.
Ephesians 4:31, 32 Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as ll types of malicious behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.
Father, I pray for unity in the Body of Christ today. I thank You for giving Your very own Son that we might be Yours. Thank You for washing us clean through the water of the Word that we might be a glorious church without spot or blemish. I pray that we might now act like that glorious church that You will be ready to receive unto Yourself on that day of Your return. Father, I pray that we will treat each other with respect, looking our for the interests of our brothers and sisters before our own. I pray that we will lift each other up and speak words of love and kindness to each other. Father, I ask You to forgive us for allowing a spirit of division to come into Your Body, the Church. Father, drive hatred and bitterness far from us and establish us in love. May we exhibit Your love to the world around us that they may see we are Yours and be drawn to You through our witness. I ask You, Father, to bring us back together that we might be that light in the darkness that You have called us to be. Thank You, Father, for hearing and answering my prayer. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.
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