Tag Archives: friends

Tuesday Thoughts – Christmas Cards?

Tuesday Thoughts – Christmas Cards?

From Free Digital. Net

From Free Digital. Net

I have been working on our annual Christmas letter – a little update on our family and a few pictures. It doesn’t take long and many of our friends and family have expressed delight in watching our family grow.

We take the Word file over to Staples and have them print out the copies, then stuff them in envelopes – and print the address labels (after updating of course).

As I attach each label to the envelope I say a prayer for that family.

What do you do to keep in touch with your family and friends at Christmas?

For to us a Child will be born. To us a Son will be given. And the rule of the nations will be on His shoulders. His name will be called Wonderful, Teacher, Powerful God, Father Who Lives Forever, Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6 NLV).


Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. Available in Kindle Format, in bookstores, online and from her website. Curriculum available upon request.

You can find her on Facebook, and Twitter. Tadeo has his own Facebook Page.





Christmas Sale


What is H.O.P?

What is H.O.P?

by Janis Cox

Hawk - Psalm 5:11

While in Arizona last winter I met a wonderful group of faith-filled Sisters in Christ. We studied and prayed together every week. One day as we were listing the prayer requests  someone said “HOP for my family”. I asked what that meant. She told me Hedge of Protection.

We can pray H.O.P. – Hedge of Protection over our friends and family. (click to tweet this)

What a wonderful easy way to remember how to pray for our family and friends.

Spread your protection over them that those who love your name may rejoice in you (Psalm 5:11, NIV).

Now I see that H.O.P in action. Here are a few examples.

A husband falls suddenly. He is taken to the hospital. After tests the doctors discover  he has sleep apnea. That could have led to a heart attack, stroke and certain death. Now, they have the solution  – a CPAP machine. If it wasn’t for the fall? There is the hedge of protection at work with our loving God.

A friend goes in for an appendectomy and they discover a cancerous tumour on her kidney. Surgery in time. Hedge of Protection.

A family member has trouble with an infection on his toe which is getting worse. After tests it is found he has a cancerous tumour on his colon. Operation. In time. No cancer left. H.O.P.

May we all use this tiny word -HOP, remembering it is our God who watches over us. It is Jesus who intercedes for us. It is the Holy Spirit who speaks into our hearts.


Thank you Lord Jesus, for giving us this wonderful way to connect with our Father. We appreciate all You have done for us so we can talk to God. We pray a hedge of protection over our family and friends. We thank You for watching over us. In Jesus’ name we pray. AMEN.

Janis Cox

Janis Cox - Author and Illustrator

Janis, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. A writer since 2003, Janis co-ordinates a group blog called Under the Cover of Prayer. She is also a contributor to a group blog called Family and Faith Matters. Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. She is the author and watercolour illustrator. For more information visit Janis on her website He Cares for You. She is a member of The Word Guild and Inscribe Writers Fellowship.

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Into His Presence

by Mary Haskett

Three months ago friends came to my home for afternoon tea.  Apart from the occasional encounters when out shopping, we had not spent time together for many years.

We’d been a singing group in our younger days with weekly practices.

One of our group has cancer. An always positive focused person she is defying all odds and lives on, despite having to take nourishment through a J-tube. She drives, cooks for her husband, sews and keeps looking unto Jesus.

Our get together was a joyous occasion with a great deal of laughter as we reminisced about our past exploits. We talked about the songs we had sung and our favorites. We watched on DVD of an Indian choir, 250 voice strong, who sang glorious old hymns of the church. Then on that DVD a trio-just like ours–well almost, who sang, “Nothing But the Blood of Jesus.”

Amen, nothing but the blood, to cleanse us and make us whole so we can enter into His presence.

Prayer was an integral part of our ministry. We were always a praying group and prayed most fervently that we’d be hidden behind the cross when we sang. Although years had gone by, we naturally went into prayer before parting.

What joy, what enthusiasm , what hope, as we laid all at the feet of Jesus. And what joy when we met again, when one in our group testified of a miraculous answer to a prayer from our previous get together. How good to enter into His presence.


Dear Lord,

May we always remember wherever we are, whatever the circumstance, that we can enter into your Dear Holy Presence and there find peace and assurance, leaving our concerns at Your throne of Grace.

Mary Haskett

Mary is a writer and speaker. Since becoming a Christian she has served as Director of Women’s ministries, Singles Fellowship, counseling and prayer.

She is a member of The The Word Guild. and Inscribe Christian Writers’ Fellowship. Mary is the founder of Ready Writers, London

Her book Reverend Mother’s Daughter was a finalist in the 2008 Word Guild of Canada Awards and won an IPPY award in the states. Her second book Because We Prayed was released last year.  She has had many articles published and  has been a regular contributor to the community publication Christian Life in London. You can visit her on her website.


A Powerful Prayer

by Jan Cox

How many of you have friends and family that have not received Christ? I know of many who are suffering or not reaching their godly potential as Christ is not their “all in all”.

I would like everyone to know Jesus. As I study and gain more insight for myself I want to reach out to others so they, too, can have Christ in their lives.

Today as I read from Colossians I saw Paul’s prayer in a new light. I know he meant it for the Christians in Colossae, but I saw it as a prayer for all people. Paul writes:

“For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding” (Colossians 1:9 NIV).

Paul’s prayer is powerful! By asking God to fill our friends and family with knowing Him – He can reveal to them all that He is about. We can leave it to God to grow them. Our job is to pray for that door to be opened.

When I started my journey towards knowing Christ, I found out later that during this time my Christian friends were praying for me – and they did not stop praying for me either, until I opened my heart to Jesus. Even now I know they continue to pray for me as I continue to pray for them.

When I came to know Christ from my heart it was from a prayer that I had said, “Jesus, reveal Yourself to me.”

You see I had the head part of Jesus. I knew that, yes, He is the Son of God. I knew from my studying that He really lived, died and rose again. But my heart could NOT claim it. I had to cry out to Christ to be “in” me – in my mind, my heart and my soul.

Paul’s prayer for others does that too. It asks God to reveal Himself to my family and friends. It takes the pressure off me, as I know that God does the pursuing.

So here is my prayer:

Pursue my friends”, Lord. Capture them. Bring them into the knowledge of Who You are. Awake in them a desire to clamour for You. Make them want to cry out, “Show Yourself to me”. Make Yourself a part of their lives. Help them to be free – free in Christ to be who God created them to be. Lord, fill them up with the knowledge of Your will, through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. Be a part of their lives.

Oswald Chambers speaks of the importance of having a deep abiding faith in Jesus:

Until we know Jesus, God is a mere abstraction, we cannot have faith in Him; but immediately we hear Jesus say – “He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father,” we have something that is real, and faith is boundless. Faith is the whole man rightly related to God by the power of the Spirit of Jesus Christ. (Oswald Chambers, October 30)

This will be my prayer for each person I meet. It will be my prayer for my family, friends and acquaintances. I will remember:

  • To not stop praying
  • To ask God to fill them with the knowledge of His will
  • For God to make sure that they know what He wants
  • For them to know Jesus – mind, heart and soul
  • To expect to see a change


Father we all have friends and family who don’t know You. We want them to get closer to Jesus in order to know You fully. Open those doors so they can see You, ask about You and finally claim Your leadership in their lives. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

My Gratitude List for this week: Counting up to 1000 – I am at 528.






  • Snowball went to a Hallowe’en party as a ladybug (she still has the label on the costume)
  • Frozen yogurt with stevia
  • Great sermon on Grace and Truth
  • Learning a new watercolour technique
  • Wonderful massage – for an aching shoulder
  • Watching Harry Potter because my granddaughter “loves Harry Potter”
  • Dealing with Bell Canada calmly
  • Understanding a former pastor through his book, My Fanatical, Regrettable, Tour of Ministry
  • God speaking to me through His Word
  • Learning to open my eyes and ears to my surroundings
  • Unexpected guests – fun!
  • Beef without antibiotics
  • Encouragement
  • Painting a picture of a turtle


Don’t Write Off a Powerful Prayer (reprinted with permission)

By Heather McGillivray

Being somewhat of a snoop, I enjoy getting together with friends and finding out what’s going on in their lives. I also love when I make a new friend and get to sit down and talk with her (really talk) for the first time—which is why I was right in my element last night, tucked away in our little booth at Country Style Donuts while my new friend told me all about the past harrowing half decade of her life.

I don’t enjoy hearing about the hardships of others, but I am inspired whenever I get to be close to someone who happens to wake up in the middle of living her dream–only to discover it has turned into a nightmare from which she does not have the luxury of escaping–and stops every once in a while, through tears, to tell me how God has been good to her.

She could choose to fall apart and let the people who depend on her most down—or she could bear up under the weight of it and keep putting one foot in front of the other. She has chosen the latter, and I am greatly humbled by her example–having been the queen of falling apart all over the place and basically spilling out from between my own seams on many a memorable occasion.

I cannot imagine going through the situations she is facing and still be as intact as she is.

We agreed to pray for each other. Sometimes we’re in a situation too long, too tightly and too deep to pray our way objectively out of it; sometimes praying for someone else’s situation and knowing they are praying for ours is almost as good as a vacation.

But on the way home I couldn’t help thinking to myself—what I really want to do is rewrite the rest of her life.

I want to open a new page in my laptop and start typing turns in the road ahead. I want to write her a reprieve: days without rain and sunshine around every corner. I want to build a white picket fence around her dreams and keep out the big, bad wolf.

Instead, I prayed. And not the mental ascent kind of prayer I sometimes send off when I haven’t taken the time to get acquainted with the situation—the kind of deep pleading and crying out to God that only comes by the power and love of His Holy Spirit, and through the witness of having experienced some of the same kind of pain. I prayed on the way home. I prayed in my favourite prayer place. And I prayed just now while the writing of this brings it back to my heart afresh.

And, while I don’t know how the story will unfold, I do know there is a peace and assurance of faith that comes with leaving the final chapters in the hands of Him who wrote the Book on love.

We don’t get to write others off, so to speak. But we do have a powerful impact on how the rest of their stories will unfold. Our prayers can push back the antagonist; send healing rain and snatch lives back out of the mouth of the destroyer.

Why do I pray so little when I know that this is so?

Our prayers are powerful—they move mountains; they move God.

But most of all they move us.

The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with (James 5:16b The Message Bible).


Heather McGillivray

Heather lives in Chelmsford, Ontario, with her college aged children. She knows they haven’t left yet because she’s still doing their laundry and buying lots of groceries–she just can’t figure out where they’re hiding, or what they’ve done with the van.

The most exciting thing in her life right now, apart from Jesus, is that He’s letting her write her very first novel, and she’s almost done it. She loves poetry, and could get lost for weeks at a time in a good one. What she knows above all else, is that God hears and answers prayer–and for that she is eternally grateful. Visit her at her blog.