Sunday, July 30, 2017

Will He Hear Me?

Will He Hear Me?

Prayer is such an important part of our walk with Christ. Through Christ, and in His name, we have the privilege, pleasure and responsibility to pray to God the Father. We can worship Him, confess sins to Him, express gratitude to Him, and present needs and/or requests for ourselves and others to Him.

In Psalm 91, God made an amazing promise about prayer.
  • Psalm 91:15 He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him.

As wonderful as this promise is, it is not unconditional. Earlier in this psalm, we learn who this promise was made to: those who have surrendered their lives to Him, who trust Him to defend and protect them, those who have genuine, life changing faith in Him.
  • Psalm 91:2 I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.”

And in 1 John chapter 5, we learn that when we pray according to His will (His desire, decrees, and determinations as described in His Word), not only does He hear us, but He will answer those prayers.
  • 1 John 5:14-15 Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.

I rest in these truths.
I trust in these promises.
I expect my prayers to have a
powerful impact on the world.

However, the Bible has much more to say about effective prayer. The verses below, although far from an exhaustive study on what the Bible has to say about prayer, make abundantly clear why it is so important to study the entire Word of God. How can we grow in knowledge, understanding and obedience with only part of the truth? That is like trying to make bread without all of the ingredients.
  • James 4:2 You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask.
    • Ask God – God is constantly providing for us. But don’t always expect God to move if you don’t talk to Him about a specific need you are aware of.
  • James 1:6-7 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;
    • Have Faith – Do you believe God can deliver on His promises? Do you have faith that He has your best interests at heart? Praying without faith is like jumping out of an airplane without a parachute.
  • Proverbs 28:9 One who turns away his ear from hearing the law, Even his prayer is an abomination.
    • Listen – You must listen to God as He speaks through His Word if you expect Him to listen to your prayers.
  • Psalm 66:18 If I regard iniquity in my heart, The Lord will not hear.
    • Repent – If you are unwilling to turn from the sins that you cherish, why are you expecting God to respond to your prayers?
  • 1 Peter 3:7 Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.
    • Honor Your Wife – Through Paul, God has instructed Christian husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the church (see Ephesians 5:25). Tall order, yes. But if I am not willing to honor my wife, I should not expect God to honor my prayers.
  • James 4:3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.
    • Don’t Be Selfish – True humility honors our Heavenly Father. Put other’s needs ahead of your own. Don’t pray greedy prayers and expect positive results.

Here are some requirements for meaningful and effective prayer.
  • Be reconciled to God through Jesus Christ. Accept His payment for your sin debt to Father God and surrender your life to Him. Trust Him!!
  • Respectfully, joyfully and expectantly engage your loving Father in prayer.
  • Don’t neglect God’s promises, instructions, warnings and advice about prayer and Godly living.
  • Be humble, genuine and thankful.
  • As a follower of Jesus Christ, pray in His name. As our Lord and Savior, the power in His name, when properly applied, brings legitimacy to our prayers.

Will He hear me? He will if I am faithful to Him, His Word and the promptings of His Spirit.


Father in Heaven, may Your Word and Your Spirit guide us in prayers and living lives that glorify and honor You. Please help Your children to apply the truths of Your Word to our prayers. Your kingdom come, Your will be done. May these things be done according to Your desires and in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Will We Rejoice and Be Glad In It?

Will We Rejoice and Be Glad In It?

It is easy to get weighed down with the burdens and troubles of this world – financial issues, family and/or job responsibilities, health issues, relationship problems, too much to do and too little time, exhaustion, loss of a loved one, disappointments, crime, injustice, political instability… Even as God’s children, followers of Jesus can succumb to the weight and worries of life. We can get overly focused on the cares and concerns of this life and lose sight of the victories and joys of our eternal life in Christ.

Life in this fallen world can be tough! But every single day is a gift from God and should be treated as such.
  • Psalm 118:24 This is the day the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.

I am not discounting the reality of the human condition – we are all sinful people living in a broken world. But the reality is, our lives are just a blip on the radar of eternity.
  • James 4:14 whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.

I am not writing this as a pep talk. I am not telling you, ‘keep your chin up, hang in there, things will get better.’

I am asking,
Will we rejoice and be glad in it?’

Today. Right now.
Can we see past our worries, problems,
disappointments and sin to celebrate what inspired
the psalmist to say,
‘We will rejoice and be glad in it.’

Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the psalmist wrote the verses that precede Psalm 118:24.
  • Psalm 118:22-23 The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone. 23 This was the LORD’s doing; It is marvelous in our eyes.

These verses in Psalm 118 are a direct reference to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!
  • Acts 4:10-11 let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole. 11 This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’
    • See also: Matthew 21:42-45 and 1 Peter 2:6-8

Jesus, God in the flesh, is the cornerstone that our faith is built upon. He is the foundation on which all we believe rests. He is The Way, The Truth and The Life through Whom we become children of God. He is the model, motivation and means by which we live a life reconciled with and honoring to God the Father.

Whatever we are dealing with,
whoever is hurting us, wherever we came from:
Jesus dealt with it on Calvary’s Cross!

This moment may be the last opportunity we have this side of heaven to praise His name and rejoice in the knowledge and reality of His truth and love.
  • Philippians 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!

This is the day the LORD has made, Will we rejoice and be glad in it?


Dear Lord, You know how much I complain and worry. I confess to You how short I have fallen with regards to rejoicing and being glad in each day that you have made. May praises to Your name rise from my heart to You. Help all who know the promises, peace and purpose that come through Christ to rejoice and be glad in this and every day. Help us see beyond the realities of today to the assurances of eternity. I humbly and confidently offer this prayer in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

The LORD Is On Your Side

The LORD Is On Your Side

Do you ever feel that everyone and everything is against you? The friends you trusted have betrayed you, the family you depended on is rejecting you, the money you counted on is gone, the health you enjoyed has begun to fail you, society has turned its back on you…

You are not alone!
  • Psalm 19:4-5 The pangs of death surrounded me, And the floods of ungodliness made me afraid. 5 The sorrows of Sheol surrounded me; The snares of death confronted me.

What do you do when there is no one to turn to? How do you survive when the world around you is falling apart? What option do you have when your back is against the wall?

Cry out to God!
  • Psalm 18:6 In my distress I called upon the LORD, And cried out to my God; He heard my voice from His temple, And my cry came before Him, even to His ears.

When you are broken, humble yourself before the One who made you. Take your needs and requests to the One who loves you. Your Heavenly Father is longing for you to reach out to Him.

He is waiting for you!
  • Psalm 116:1-2 I love the LORD, because He has heard My voice and my supplications. 2 Because He has inclined His ear to me, Therefore I will call upon Him as long as I live.

As a follower of Jesus Christ, you are a child of God. As a child of God, the Holy Spirit of God lives in you. With God Himself living in you, you can overcome any obstacle.

Experience His love, truth and power!
  • 1 John 4:4 You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.

When God is on your side, it really doesn’t matter who is against you. What He has planned for you is good and right. It may not be what you expect. It may not be what you want. But it is best.

Find your strength, comfort and peace in His plans for you!
  • Psalm 118:6 The LORD is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?
  • Romans 8:31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

If you don’t know Father God through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, cry out to God for salvation. He is on your side, but you must surrender your entire life to Him.
  • Romans 10:9-10 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

If you are already a follower of Jesus, but have fallen into a lifestyle marred by sin, confess your sins and be restored in relationship with Him. He is on your side, but you must deal with the sin in your life.
  • 1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

If you are walking with God daily and serving Him faithfully, lift up praises to His holy name and let your life be a light that glorifies Him. He is on your side, but you must stay in a right relationship with Him.
  • Matthew 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.


Father, Your Word makes clear that you do not desire for anyone to perish. May Your Holy Spirit draw many to You through faith in Jesus Christ. Help every person see that You are on their side. I humbly pray these things in the name of my Savior Jesus. Amen.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Not A Secret

Not A Secret

People have a way of making simple things complicated.  There are about as many excuses for this as there are people, but some of the common reasons are pride, selfishness, greed, envy, arrogance and ignorance.  The most unfortunate result of this tendency/problem is how the central message of the Holy Bible has been twisted, misrepresented and misunderstood over the centuries.  The clear and simple truths of the Bible are not a secret.  God’s message of love and forgiveness is meant for everyone.

God Reveals Himself in Creation
  • Psalm 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows His handiwork.
  • Romans 1:20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse,

God Presents and Preserves Absolute Truth in His Word
(The Holy Bible)
  • Psalm 119:160 The entirety of Your word is truth, And every one of Your righteous judgments endures forever.
  • 2 Timothy 3:16-17 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

God’s Holy Spirit Enables Us to Understand and Apply Truth
  • Daniel 5:14 I have heard of you, that the Spirit of God is in you, and that light and understanding and excellent wisdom are found in you.
  • 1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

God’s Word Declares the Sinful Nature of Man
  • Psalm 53:2-3 God looks down from heaven upon the children of men, To see if there are any who understand, who seek God. 3 Every one of them has turned aside; They have together become corrupt; There is none who does good, No, not one.
  • Mark 7:21-23 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, 22 thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. 23 All these evil things come from within and defile a man.”

God Requires a Sacrifice as Payment For Sin
  • Leviticus 15:15 “Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering, which is for the people, bring its blood inside the veil, do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and before the mercy seat.
  • Leviticus 17:11 For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul.’

Those Who’s Sin Debt Has Not Been Paid Will Spend Eternity Separated from God
  • Philippians 3:18-19 For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: 19 whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame—who set their mind on earthly things.
  • 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9 in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power,

God Does Not Desire for Any to Perish
  • Ezekiel 33:11 Say to them: ‘As I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn, turn from your evil ways! For why should you die, O house of Israel?’
  • 2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

Jesus Christ Paid Our Sin Debt
  • Isaiah 53:5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.
  • 2 Corinthians 5:21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him
  • Colossians 1:14 in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins

Jesus Christ States Clearly that He is the Only Way to Reconciliation with Father God
  • John 8:24 Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”
  • John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

Turn to Jesus now for the forgiveness of your sins and reconciliation with God.

Pray for understanding and for God to send you a follower of Christ to help you learn and grow.

If you are already a Christian, pray for God to send you to someone who needs to hear the clear truths of the Bible and the fundamentals of the faith.


Father, spread Your truth, show Your love, save many lost souls!  May Your will be done.  I offer this simple prayer in the name of Christ my Lord and Savior. Amen

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Personal Prayers in Scripture

The Word of God is an important part of my prayers to God. His Words often best capture my needs, my thoughts, my confessions, my desires. Several verses below are a part of my regular prayer life. Some I found while preparing this devotional. I hope that these personal prayers in scripture are a blessing to you.

I Love You Lord
To experience a love for God made possible only by His love for me is beyond my ability to fully comprehend or appreciate. My love for Him defines my life and is at the core of all that I am in Christ.
  • Psalm 18:1 I will love You, O LORD, my strength.
  • 1 John 4:19 We love Him because He first loved us.

You Alone Are Worthy of My Praise
I respect and admire some people. I enjoy a few places. I am fascinated by a couple of things. But my praise is reserved for the One True God of the Bible! Who He is and what He does is far above and beyond any person, place or thing.
  • Psalm 150:6 Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD!
  • Revelation 4:11 “You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, And by Your will they exist and were created.”

Forgive Me
When I surrendered my life to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, every single sin in my life (past, present and future) was forgiven. However, as part of maximizing my reconciled relationship with God, the sin in my life must still be addressed. This is accomplished by agreeing with what He says about sin, admitting that I am guilty of sin and appreciating Christ’s complete and permanent payment for my sin. I must also forgive others when they wrong me.
  • Psalm 25:18 Look on my affliction and my pain, And forgive all my sins.
  • Matthew 6:12 And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors.

Have Mercy on Me
I am so grateful that I don’t get what I deserve.
  • Psalm 51:1 Have mercy upon me, O God, According to Your lovingkindness; According to the multitude of Your tender mercies, Blot out my transgressions.
  • Luke 18:13 And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’

Your Will Be Done
There is no hidden agenda with God. He loves us. He came to earth to die for us. He desires all people to be reconciled to Him through Jesus Christ. He has the power, the plan and the passion to save those who trust in Him. Why would I want to mess that up with my misguided desires and limited perspective?
  • Matthew 6:10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven.
  • Luke 22:42 saying, “Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done.”

Increase My Faith
Although my faith in Him should always prevail over my doubts, fears and weaknesses, too often it doesn’t. How I long for a God honoring faith that trusts, obeys and relies on Him!
  • Mark 9:24 Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”
  • Luke 17:5 And the apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.”

For additional blessings, pray about something very specific, and then seek out verses in the Bible related to what you just prayed about. Read these verses to God as part of your prayers.


May Your Word inspire, encourage, facilitate and guide the prayers of your children, as well as those who are seeking to know You as Lord, Savior and Father. May Your Word, prayed in hope, faith and love, transform the hearts and minds of those speaking it back to You. Your will be done! I pray in the name of Christ my Savior. Amen.