Tag Archives: HELP

What Leads People to Jesus?

What Leads People to Jesus?

by Janis Cox

John 6;63

The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life (John 6:63, NIV).

I believe that God has a plan of redemption for each of us. I believe He uses circumstances to reveal Himself. And He uses these experiences to bring us in contact with Him.

But I know too that only when we are empty, frustrated, tired, upset, grieving – and ready to receive Him – will He indwell in us. We need to want Him. Then we will ask Him in.

When I reached out to Jesus my hunger was strong. I knew there was something more that just life here on earth. And as I searched, He led me on quite a journey of discovery. As I look back, the stories I heard helped me along in His plan but my hunger enabled me to ask for His presence.

We can hear faith stories. We can be touched by the wonderful words of others. But it takes God to fill us up.

We need to ASK.

Through our asking, God put His process in motion, creating something in use that was non-existent until we asked (Oswald Chambers).

The truth of redemption – that is what will fill us up.

It is never the sharing of personal experiences that saves people, but the truth of redemption (Oswald Chambers).

But that doesn’t mean to stop sharing your stories. They are part of His plan. They need to be told so others can make the choice to ASK, “Please fill me up, Lord.”

Come to Me [Jesus] in your gaping emptiness, know that in Me you are complete (Jesus Calling).

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, we come to you – empty. Please fill us with Your Spirit and help us to be  people of faith. We ask this, Jesus, because we know that only You can fill us up. In Your name we pray. AMEN.

If you haven’t asked Jesus to reveal Himself. Do it now.

Tweetables:

We can hear faith stories. But it takes God to fill us up. (click to tweet)

Here is one of my favourite worship song by Hawk Nelson – Let Your Words be Life

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 andInscribe Writers Fellowship.

BLOWN AWAY

Blown Away

by T. L. Wiens

wind storm

It’s 9 pm, March 20, 2013. I look out the window towards the south and see strange rolling clouds on the horizon.

A shiver runs through me and I begin to pray for protection.

Moments later, the phone rings. My husband is trapped on a road and has been informed that no one is coming to help him until morning.

A blizzard has been raging all day but this winter, that’s become normal. How come something within me isn’t at ease? My two daughters and I head to bed all just a bit nervous.

Two am, I’m awakened by my eldest daughter walking around. She’s scared because her wall is flexing in the wind. The dining room window has jumped its track. We try to figure out what’s going on outside but we can’t see.

2:22 am, we hear a deafening roar followed by the distinct sound of nails being ripped out of the wood, boards cracking and giving away and there’s a bright flash. The floor ripples beneath our feet. The furnace covers explode against the wall. My daughter is only a couple of feet away when it happens but the noise around us is so loud she doesn’t even hear it. My other daughter wanders out of her room, her face white with fear.

The house is creaking, boards are slamming in the wind. The house might not make it but is going outside any safer? We decide it is. As we’re heading out the door, my eldest daughter notices smoke filling the living room. The reservoir of our grain stove is on fire. I guess the back draft from the wind must have pushed the flames back. She douses it with water. We head out to sit in the truck and do what? There’s not much we can do but do our best to stay warm. With the wind chill, it’s -20˚ C.

I know the power inside the house is connected to the now missing section of the roof. My eldest daughter and I need to get it turned off at the power box. She steps away from the sheltered area near the truck and I watch her blow down the driveway, unprepared for the force of the wind. She fights her way back to me and the two of us face the wind together. The house is so dark.

I’d been praying since two am but it all felt so futile. Eight years earlier, we lost our house to a fire. Why was this happening again? My daughter started to sing an old hymn. The words comforted me.

God had taken us through tough times before. We’d be fine.

But the way the truck is shaking doesn’t feel safe. We move to our fifth wheel trailer that’s nestled in a snow bank, bringing our dogs inside for warmth.

March 21, 2013, the wind is still howling. My husband is still stranded. I feel so helpless. The house is still standing but the wind is still blowing and more damage will occur if we don’t do something. Thankfully, I’m able to get a hold of a friend. He manages to get to our house. After tying down the roof, he helps us get enough power going to run the heaters he’s brought with him.

I’m able to put out the call for prayer.

How do you describe what happens when people pray for you? I went from standing in this huge storm that enveloped me both mentally and physically to being in the eye of the storm where all is calm.

Prayer is like a shield of love around you and
no matter what physical travesty you face, you’ll be okay. 
(tweet this)

March 22, 2013, my husband rolls onto the yard. My son had arrived half an hour earlier. With the help of another friend, they begin repairing the roof. By evening, the plywood is in place. Six inches of snow fall but thanks to the help, it’s not in our attic.

Saturday, my son in-law, who is a electrician arrives. By Sunday afternoon, all power is restored. Amazingly, all of my houseplants survived, even my seedlings. Why did God choose to protect them? I don’t know but I know His hand was on them.

People often ask why God allows bad things to happen.

I’m not going to say it’s fun but it is an awesome privilege
to experience the power of God.

You can’t fully appreciate who He is without some adversity where you know it’s not you holding things together.

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:35-39, NIV).

Tammy Wiens

Tammy lives in Saskatchewan with her husband. They have four children. She enjoys gardening, walks along the beach and being on the farm. She has a passion for her faith, studying the Bible and prayer.

She has published two books; Where a Little Rain Comes Down and Making the Bitter Sweet. A short story, “May’s First Christmas” appeared in Christmas Chaos, a collection of stories about Christmas experiences that don’t make the fronts of Christmas cards. “Careful What You Whisper” is another short story about Tammy’s experiences after breaking her back. It can be found in A Second Cup of Hot Apple Cider. Visit T. L. Wiens for more information about Tammy’s books and workshops.

ARE YOU CROSSING THE LINE?

Are You Crossing the Line?

crossingtheline

by Patricia Day 

The term ‘crossing the line’ means:

to cross boundaries; to disrespect another’s rights or privacy; to give in to temptation and break rules or laws that are put in place to direct one, in society.

Recently, on a journey, I encountered serious snow squalls.  The line showing the centre division on the road was invisible, so proceeding carefully, I hoped I would stay on the road.

Imagine my horror when I saw cars coming directly at me.  Head on.  I had inadvertently crossed the dividing line and was no longer on my side of the road.  Crossing the line put me at considerable risk. It had been so easy to do, but for my own and everyone else’s safety, I needed return to my rightful place.  I found that retracing my ‘steps’, to get back on track, were much harder to accomplish but little by little I found my rightful place.  I got back onto the right side of the centre line; back to relative safety.

“if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins”  (James 5:19, NKJV).

Crossing ethical, legal or moral lines can also
thrust us into dangerous territory. Tweet this.

It is called sin.  It can be very easy to lose direction in life, but so much harder to recover.

Anguish grows in your heart with each rejection encountered: with each wrong choice.

You have crossed the line of what is right, and must take control or you will quickly  succumb to more temptation. Tweet this.

To seek professional help can be a good place to start.  To give your life to God through Jesus, can be a life-saver.

” Deal bountifully with Your servant, that I may live and keep Your word.  Open my eyes that I might see wondrous things from Your law.  I am a stranger in the earth; do not hide Your commandments from me.  My soul breaks with longing for Your judgments at all times, You rebuke the proud-the cursed, who stray from Your commandments”  (Psalm 119:17-21, NKJV).

Prayer:

Abba, we can so easily lose our way in life.  Please help us to stay on track as we respect the boundaries put in place, for our wellbeing and for the rights of others.  Amen.

Patricia Day

Patricia Day

Writing has always been a passion of Patricia. She can express myself better in writing, than verbally.  She enjoys creating short stories and devotionals. Her favourite past-times: family-time; gardening; reading; walking and listening to good music. Married.  Mother of two sons; step-Mom to a son & daughter and Nana to ten.

Look for her devotionals at Pepe Prays and her blog at Patters Matters.

Patricia has recently completed her first novel – Eleanor, A Stolen Childhood – which is in the process of publication.  Her second novel, Priscilla – Hidden in the Shadows is now being written.

IS YOUR MIND A CLUTTERED DESKTOP OF NEEDS?

Is Your Mind a Cluttered Desktop of Needs?

by Violet Nesdoly (reprinted with permission)

Is Your Mind Cluttered with Needs?

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks, it will be opened” (Matthew 7:7-8 NIV)

We are a needy people. I am a needy person—high maintenance. It doesn’t take much to get me flying to God again, upset, worried, hurt, anxious, burdened…

Because of my need and dependence, verses like Matthew 7:7-8 are a great comfort. Of course this isn’t the only place in the Bible that God promises to respond to our requests. A dozen or so parallel passages give us a fuller understanding of what Jesus is talking about. Let’s do a little explore of Bible passages that talk, first about us seeking God, and then about His response (incomplete lists for sure, but a start).

We can ask/seek/knock:

God will respond when:

We don’t need to be preoccupied or mesmerized by the needs weighing on our minds and hearts today. Instead we can take them to God, and so minimize them from the desktop of our minds to the dock of His care.

PRAYER: Dear God, what welcome words these are. Help me to put them into practice in my life today today, believing that You are at work in the circumstances and people that concern me. May peace reign in my mind as I transfer my burdens to You. Amen.

Related articles

Violet Nesdoly

Violet freelances in several genres and has been published in a variety of print and online publications. Her articles, stories, and activities have appeared in Keys for Kids, Devotions for Girls, Devotions for Boys, Clubhouse, Guide, Primary Treasure, Partners, Pockets and others. She has also published two books of poetry and is an avid blogger. She is a member of Inscribe Christian Writers’ Fellowship and a professional member of The Word Guild.

H.E.L.P.

H.E.L.P.

by Jan Cox

Lately I have been crying out to God, as in the Psalms:

Listen to my prayer, O God, do not ignore my plea;
hear me and answer me. My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught. (Psalm 55: 1-2 NIV)

But as for me, I trust in You (Psalm 55:23 NIV)

That last line always bring the peace I need – the assurance of a loving God who hears my prayers and answers.

When I feel anxious I do cry HELP but it is a new HELP.

H – Having

E – Everything

L – Lifted in

P – Prayer

Prayer does what worrying can’t do – it gives me a foundation,
caring arms and the strength I need.
(Tweetable)

Prayer:

As I learn more and more about You, Father, I know that turning to You in prayer is the most important task I can do. Thanks for teaching me to do this. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

My Gratitude List for this week – counting to 1000

  • finding a family cottage for a week this summer
  • continuing to learn French with a friend in the steamroom
  • ability to take a nap when needed
  • egrets lined up like sentinels around the lake
  • sludge in the pond that looked beautiful – in the shape of an S – wish I had had my camera
  • over a week since I had played Cribbage with my hubby – close game but he won
  • gave Snowball a bath – now I can enjoy her kisses
  • taking my time – S-L-O-W-I-N-G down
  • ability to pray for others
  • gorgeous red sunset
  • ability to think through problems – computer and printer
  • to never give up
  • memories of my Dad saying: stand tall; shoulders back; you can do it
  • meeting new neighbours
  • first piece of dark chocolate in six months
  • a small take-out restaurant with natural foods that catered to my food allergies
  • shopping with hubby for his clothes
  • not getting upset when art class cancelled
  • five windows installed
  • pleasant hard-working window installers
  • no severe reactions to excess dirt and dust
  • “I am Sam” – great movie
  • Genesis 18:25-50 “This god set things right for me.” (The Message)
  • a great sermon about hearing God’s voice
  • time to paint another picture for my children’s picture book
  • learning from FPU : “If you aim at nothing you will hit it every time.” Ziggy Ziggler
  • another FPU: “The best vacations are the ones that don’t follow me home.”
  • praying friends to help me get back on track
  • Hard Eucharisteo – my Mom passed away this morning
  • caring family and minister

PATH TO PRAYER

Path to Prayer by Kimberley Payne

Today is the first day that we look at how to pray. Although our goal, I believe, is to make prayer a living, breathing moment we need to start at the beginning. Follow a PATH to prayer.

Our guest blogger today is Kimberley Payne. Kimberley takes a look at one method that can help us focus on our talk with God.

PATH TO PRAYER

Years ago, if I felt that I wanted or needed something I would ask my brother and sister-in-law to pray for me. My brother was a Pastor and I felt he had a “direct line” to God. Of course, I would only ask if it was very important or something I thought worthy of prayer.

My own prayers consisted mostly of reciting words I had memorized as a child, such as the Lord’s Prayer. If I asked for something I wanted, I left it to chance. I believed it was happenstance if my prayer was answered and I thought that it couldn’t hurt to ask.

My prayers today are much different. Today my definition of prayer is not just reciting words or asking for stuff, but rather it is a conversation with a loving Father.

In my book, Fit for Faith, I follow the acronym P-A-T-H to prayer:

P stands for Praise. Prayer is not just about asking for things but it is about telling God about the things you adore about Him. He is praiseworthy. Many times I open my prayer time with praise, letting God know how much I appreciate and love Him.

A stands for Admit. I admit that I am a sinner and confess my sins. Sometimes I admit something obvious like gossiping – other times the Holy Spirit reveals to me where I have sinned. 1 John 1:8 states that if we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.

T stands for Thanksgiving. I thank God for all that He is and all that He does for me. Some days my prayer time is spent entirely on thanking Him.

H stands for Help. This is the time when I can ask for His help and bring my requests to Him. I can pray for my own needs and the needs of others.

I have no trouble spending fifteen minutes a day in prayer, especially when I consider prayer to be more than reciting memorized words or just asking for things. I challenge you to spend fifteen minutes each day following the PATH to prayer.

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful (Colossians 4:2 NIV).