Tag Archives: gratitude list

power of prayer

DO WE PLAY MORE THAN WE PRAY?

Do we play more than we pray?

If there is power in prayer – why are we not down on our knees more often? Why do we not prioritize it?

Looking back on a blog from 2011. Yes 6 years ago. I edited it a bit but this could impact your life this morning. I pray it is so.

“Our prayers may be awkward. Our attempts may be feeble. But since the power of prayer is in the one who hears it and not in the one who says it, our prayers do make a difference.” – Max Lucado

Do we play more than we pray? There is power in prayer.

And if there is power in prayer – why are we not down on our knees more often? Why do we not prioritize it?

This has reemphasized my need for constant prayer.

Jesus says, “My house will be called a house of prayer” (Mark 11:15-17).

Take a look at our churches:

Are we putting prayer as the focus of our services? Or do we put the sermon, the Scriptures and the music?

Why do most churches get a good turnout to a concert (sometimes with a fee), than a prayer meeting?

How many of your congregants actually come to prayer meetings?

Take a look at ourselves:

We no longer have the physical Tabernacle with the Holy of Holies but we have Jesus inside us. Therefore the house of Jesus is inside us.

Let’s think about our lives and how we do God’s work. In what spirit do we do our work – our job, our relationships, our family, our marriage, our kids, our friends, our neighbours? Are we in sync with the purpose of God’s house? Are we prayerful?

Is what I am doing for the glory of God or for myself? Am I saying and even thinking the things He wants me to think and say? Am I prayerful?

I know when we pray God intervenes because God hears our prayers.

Today we are seeing more marital problems, child rearing problems and strife in the workplace and we know that it is essential that we pray for God to intervene in all these areas. His power and grace are needed – now more that ever before.

There is power in prayer.

If we join together and pray; if we come to the throne of grace and petition for all parts of our lives – what power can be unleashed by our Father in heaven? Scripture says:

“ye have not, because ye ask not” (James 4:2 KJV).

Then let’s ask. Let’s be bold and see how God works in and through us. Let’s be prayerful. (tweet this)

Let’s ask for ourselves, for others and for our world.

My Gratitude List:

84. Great day visiting grandkids
85. Beautiful sunny warm day
86. My daughter preparing a yummy lunch
87. God blessing my writing
88. Daffodils poking through the soil
89. A new camera to try (lots of instructions)
90. All this energy of Christ that so powerfully works in me

Other posts on the power of prayer:

http://www.otherfood-devos.com/2011/05/pure-and-passionate-early-church.html

http://skipperclan.com/2011/04/21/my-house-shall-be-called/

Prayer:

Oh Lord, I pray that we can learn to pray for all things at all times. I pray that you will teach us the power of prayer. Help us to look to you for all our lives. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

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COMING HOME? IN SEASON AND OUT OF SEASON

Coming Home? In Season and out of Season

by Jan Cox

The sky looked threatening as I returned home.

This is always the hardest post for me. To write about “Coming home” from a mission trip in jet lag; trying to think of all that I have seen and done in the past two weeks.

What can I say that will impact lives?

How can I explain how this experience once again has changed me?

First I pray:

Lord, help me to have the words to express my heart, my feelings and your Word. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

Cooking dinner while I type. More writing to do tomorrow for Inscribe Writers Online. Back to reality.

Today I think I will tell you that it is hard returning home from a Mission Trip. At camp we are together working for God – we see Him at work in people’s lives. We pray together; eat together; play together and grow together.

I gave a devotion on the last day of camp. It was based on Oswald Chambers “In Season and out of Season” based on 2 Timothy 4:2.

I think this is what I will share with you today.

In Season and Out of Season

Have you ever had an “aha” moment, sometime when you have felt truly inspired – either an idea to help in a situation; or something to write about or something to make or draw?

I have and it feels awesome. Sometimes having that moment makes me long for, pray for and look for that to happen again. Being on a mission trip has the same feeling – totally wrapped up in God-moments.

But now that I am home – I want that experience again. So I think:

“Come on, God – I want to be inspired. Now.”

After reading Oswald Chambers (April 25),  I see that this is a wrong attitude.

I love the part where Oswald says:

“If we do only what we feel inclined to do, some of us would do NOTHING for ever and ever.”

And:

“if we made a god of our best moments… God will fade out of our lives.”

OUCH. That makes me rethink wanting those “God-moments”.

As we headed into our last day of camp, I challenged our team to enjoy each moment, not be looking for or remembering special past moments or not to be praying for that God moment.

Instead I suggested that they focus on the present and live for Him, both “in season” and “out of season”.

As I challenged our team I challenge you, my readers.

Are you persevering in your daily lives? Are you living out each moment to the best of your ability and are you willing to let God use you however He wants?

I will be taking this week to rethink my experiences and hopefully next Friday will be able to share some of those precious moments.

Ann Voskamp returned from Haiti  recently – she also talks about returning home at A Holy Experience.

Blessings in the coming week.

Jan

My Gratitude List continues – counting to 2000.

      • inspiration for my “Money” workshops
      • energy and perseverance to get ready for my trip
      • peace
      • a rabbit hopping across my back lawn
      • our ability to wash and dry clothes so easily
      • hot tea with ginger
      • a soft cozy bed to sleep in
      • air conditioning
      • a family of ducks by the marsh
      • thought of the words, “river of God is teeming with life and all who go there will be revived”
      • cutest wee sparrow with yellow markings on his head and neck – just outside my window
      • great “finds” for Poland at the Lily Ann Thrift Store
      • donations for Poland – thank you
      • found a great word search programme and crossword maker for my English class
      • almost packed – hope there is room!
      • packing going well
      • lots of prayers
      • great sermon from a guest lay preacher
      • Off to Poland
      • great flight – I even slept a little
      • great stay at the Mercure hotel in Berlin with most of the team
      • time to plan at our Wokietek camp
      • campers arrive – renewed many acquaintances from past years
      • camp begins and the weather is great
      • great roommates

2012 IM Camp Roommates

      • Good daily worship and planning meetings at 7:15am
      • only 1 night that I didn’t sleep well
      • learning the needs of the campers – we pray
      • good worship times in Polish and English
      • picking wild blueberries and eating them
      • visiting the Wang Temple – a 14th Century Temple

 

The Wang Temple in Katpacz

      • Hawaiian Day – fun activities
      • Skit Night – just wonderful – my group did a skit in Polish – the three little pigs
Skit Night IM Camp 2012

The Three Little PIgs – in Polish for Skit Night

      • Banquet Night – just wonderful – food, fun and fellowship

Banquet Night IM Camp 2012

      • connecting with campers to know what to pray for them
      • Bitter sweet – saying goodbye
      • great trip back to Gorzow Baptist church – even through heavy winds and rain
      • Church service on Sunday – many of campers were there
      • orchids – I have never seen so many blooms

Orchids – So many blooms

      • time at the lake – fun – fun – fun – campfire

Campfire at the Lake

      • shells from the Baltic Sea

Finding Shells at the Baltic

Shells!

 

      • memories – going to the pool at the hotel in Karpacz; rainbows; deer; hawks; chats with Polish friends; prayer with Polish friends
      • early morning ride to airport in Berlin – then to London and home
      • met by my loving husband at the airport
      • a wonderful cuddle time with my grandson
      • HOME – Haliburton and I beat Wayne at a game of cribbage
      • a great sleep
      • feeling at peace even in jetlag mode
      • the promise of rain tonight – we really need it

Jan Cox

Jan, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. She has published two devotionals and a number of articles for magazines and a Bible study. She is owner of Under the Cover of Prayer and moderates the site. She also writes at A Better Way. Jan has completed a children’s book called Tadeo Turtle. She is the watercolour illustrator. Word Alive will be publishing this story and it will be available later this summer. See more about Tadeo at Jan’s Website.

SINGING AS PRAYER

Singing as Prayer

by Jan Cox

 

A while ago I talked about having foundational prayers committed to memory, which can soothe the soul and help connect with God and fill me with peace.

Another way I can make that connection while in a crisis situation is through song. I turn on my praise and worship music and sing to God.

What a glorious way to celebrate God in the midst of darkness.

Both words and music stir my heart and soul. I feel gratitude and am peace knowing my God is in control.

This is prayer – any connection we can have with the Father – that is prayer.

We have looked at Foundational Prayers, Prayer Walking, and today’s post – Praise in Singing. How do you connect in prayer? Email me.

Gratitude List

My list is growing. This makes 130.

  • New online women (and men) who want to grow in Christ like I do
  • Dinner with friends
  • Mom’s health is improving
  • Time with my sister
  • Zoo with the grandkids
  • Dinner with family
  • Laughter of kids
  • Good drive to Mom’s
  • Learning to enjoy the moment
  • Time for a nap
  • Supportive hubby
  • Energy to drive
  • A good night’s sleep
  • Dinner at my daughter’s
  • Playing Wii with my daughter (Dance Dance)

Prayer:

Thank You, Father, for inspiring song writers over the ages with the music and words to praise You. Remind me to use these songs to praise You in good times and bad. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

Two of my favourite songs:

Lost and Found http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o9ZtP6db8AI

Blessed be the Name of the Lord  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3afHcJUdGqg

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Jan Cox

Jan, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. She has published two devotionals and a number articles for magazines and a Bible study. She is owner of Under the Cover of Prayer and moderates the site. She also writes at A Better Way. Jan has written a children’s book in which she is also the watercolour illustrator. She hopes to publish it this year.

IF PRAYER WERE COMMON SENSE

If Prayer were Common Sense

by Jan Cox

I take myself to be a reasonable person. I can be persuaded to see the other side of an argument – sometimes it is not easy as my husband would attest. But I do try to use my common sense.

Jesus talks to us about the other spectrum – supernatural sense – where there may be no common sense of why at all, in earthly terms.

That’s why we scream against bad happenings and cry – Why God, Why? We can’t see “the other side”; we want to make everything to be at our human level of thinking – and that is not God’s level.

One passage that I have starred many times is 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18. Here we are told three things to do which are supernatural revelations:

Be joyful always
Pray continually
Give thanks

Oswald Chambers talks about praying “without ceasing” (KJV). If we think of prayer as something to do only when such and such happens, then Oswald suggest we are on the wrong track. He reminds us to think of prayer as breathing, as blood flowing in our veins. We are not conscious of it but it always goes on as we live. “Prayer is not an exercise, it is life.”

So as we live and breathe we pray.

Maxi Dunham wrote an excellent workbook called Living Prayer. In it we learn as we live we can pray. But it is suggested that we might need to learn this. Although prayer is innate, in our lives it can become clogged like an artery can be clogged. The spontaneity of prayer can be lost.

“Pray without ceasing”; “keep the childlike habit of offering up prayer in your heart to God all the time.” (Oswald Chambers, May 26, 2011)

Awareness of Jesus and opening our hearts to Him, opens the artery of prayer. Let’s learn together how to do the supernatural and pray continually.

Next week I will talk about One way to learn how to pray continually.

My Gratitude List – I have stopped numbering and will just continue my list:

– a royal wedding where love seemed evident
– a royal wedding message that made God come first
– chicken already cook from the store
– medicines for pain
– a hubby who does the dishes
– time for prayer with a friend
– first buds on the trees (very late spring this year)
– Ann Voskamp
– Ann Voskamp (she needs at least 2)
– reading One Thousand Gifts
– leading One Thousand Gifts Bible Study
-buying a piece of land
– waiting on God
– beautiful sunshine – clear blue skies (not today while I write this..)

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Jan Cox

Jan, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. She has published two devotionals and a number articles for magazines and a Bible study. She is owner of Under the Cover of Prayer and moderates the site. She also writes at A Better Way. Jan has written a children’s book in which she is also the watercolour illustrator. She hopes to publish it this year.

SOMEONE WAS PRAYING FOR ME

Someone was Praying for Me

by Jan Cox

“When you pray for others, God listens to you and blesses them, and sometimes, when you are safe and happy, remember that someone has prayed for you.”

I searched for the words of this quote on the Internet but could find no one’s name associated with the words.

This week I have been struggling with breathing problems brought on by the pollen in Arizona. I asked a few friends for prayer. Today I am much better and I know it is because “someone has prayed” for me.

Today I watched a video on Huntley Street of a mother and father who prayed constantly for their daughter as she struggled through alcohol and drugs. The mother and daughter co-authored a book called Cut the Strings. God answered and changed a life. In one point of the video the mom tells of many nights when the father did not sleep but prayed throughout the night and then went to work the next day. That is devotion and that is what God asks of us. The video has two parts, one and two. More about the book and a review can be found here.

If you are wakened at night – don’t fret. Count it a privilege that God wants to listen to you. Open your heart and let the Holy Spirit bring people, thoughts, worries and whatever else into your mind so you can give it up to the Lord.

And when you pray remember someone is praying for you, too!

My Gratitude List for this week:

43.  A sweet clean breath of air down my lungs

44.  Mail from the post office – a card of thank you

45.  Pottery classes

46.  Tap Dancing classes

47.  My MAC computer

48.  My massage therapist, Holly

Prayer:

Father, we thank you that you have blessed us with the ability to pray – to communicate with you. What a wonderful feeling to have this connection. Continue to nudge us when we forget and help us to learn to lift all of our lives to You. In Jesus’ name. AMEN