Every day I open up my favorite phone app. This app allows me to stay in touch with friends, family, and distant memories. Facebook is a friend to everyone. It is the first thing many do in the morning, keeping up with trends, reading the news, and sharing life's main events. There is one thing...
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There is an old saying that goes, “Stay prayed up!” This is one way to keep the devil at bay and to remain closer to God. Who doesn’t want to be closer to God? There are many ways to develop a close relationship with Christ. Over all the praises, songs, prayers, and...
During the Christmas holidays it is custom that we listen to Christmas and winter themed music. Many of us go out and decorate, purchase greeting cards, and look for ways to see close but distant family members. What we also try to do is make lasting memories with our children and spouse. Many...
Every day I open up my favorite phone app. This app allows me to stay in touch with friends, family, and distant memories. Facebook is a friend to everyone. It is the first thing many do in the morning, keeping up with trends, reading the news, and sharing life's main events.
There is one thing on Facebook that continues to amaze me; it's the amount of my friends and loved ones asking me for the same thing at least once per week. PRAYERS.
No, it is not a specific call to me, but a call to their list of friends to do what Christians aim to do everyday when they pray--have a group of believers, their circle, all believing, desiring, and praying for the same thing at one time throughout the day. I know that every time I see a friends, acquaintance, or loved one type “just asking for prayers”, I respond and immediately say a prayer. This is easy, this is virtual, this is friendship.
Looking at the way we so easily intercede for others makes me think, wouldn't it be just as easy to pray for the one person who prays for us everyday, without fail, without ceasing? Why don't we pray for our pastor more often? He spends time talking to us, counseling us, and guiding our souls to eternal life in the kingdom.
Who has been tasked with the job of praying for the church's head?
The easy answer is, YOU.
Jeremiah 3:15 says, “And I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will feed you with knowledge and understanding.”
Shepherds need many things in order to accomplish their jobs and those are the things we should pray for. Reminding ourselves that for one, our pastor is a man first. He is human and therefore needs to meet the basic human needs. After, he is a man of God, which requires strength, focus, love, patience, kindness, and a spirit of unbelievable faith.
The next time you see that request asking for prayers for a friend, also think about the one person who doesn't always ask. The one person who sees, hears, and responds to your every prayer request and is challenged by God himself to pray for you everyday. Know that he is strong because he has to be, but we can pray for that extra push.
Are you the one? Are you the person who will respond “prayers sent” when the leader of the church needs extra support?
You can start at any time, it only takes a moment.
Here are some ways you can specifically pray for your pastor:
- Pray that he will be continually guided by the Spirit
- Pray that he will hear God’s voice clearly
- Pray that he will clearly deliver the message God has laid on his heart
- Pray that he will be strong and avoid temptation
- Pray that he will seek wise counsel
- Pray that he will continually find rest and peace in Jesus
“I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3This is good, and pleases God our Savior…” -1 Timothy 2:1-3
There is an old saying that goes, “Stay prayed up!” This is one way to keep the devil at bay and to remain closer to God.
Who doesn’t want to be closer to God?
There are many ways to develop a close relationship with Christ. Over all the praises, songs, prayers, and devotions, it is clear that we need to know who Christ is. We need to know the experiences Christ had with the people he met along the way to becoming our one true savior. We need to know his true intentions for us all. We need to know how his will and our ways align in the grand scheme of this great life.
In order to understand our journey and the plans he has for us, we need to know him.
Considering the need every child of God has for a real, honest relationship with him, our first stop in pursuing a relationship with him should be the Bible, or the Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth.
Picking up the Bible for leisurely reading may seem like a challenge. Reading the Bible outside of church or Bible study may seem like a chore. But, any relationship worth having is worth working for. Every day God works on us just a little bit more, so carve out some time to work on your end as well.
Psalms 119:133 says that God’s Word gives us guidance. In times of need, and in times of ease, it’s important to seek Christ’s guidance for your life.
Here are some quick tips for getting more Bible time in your life:
- Use a small devotional in the mornings to get your day started
- Commit yourself to 10 minutes of reading on a topic of your choice 4 days a week and highlight the important parts that stand out to you for later reflection.
- Use a handy Bible reading App
- Listen to an audio Bible during your commute
- Search for verses that have a significant meaning to you to begin your reading (i.e. Birthday January 4th= read John 1:4, Philippians 1:4, Ecclesiastes 1:4, etc.)
After you have chosen what works best for you, find a way to tie it into your prayer time or whatever time you have set for your private dates with Jesus. If you chose to have several small ones a day or just one a day, use this time to build on your relationship with Jesus!
You’ll be glad you did.
During the Christmas holidays it is custom that we listen to Christmas and winter themed music. Many of us go out and decorate, purchase greeting cards, and look for ways to see close but distant family members. What we also try to do is make lasting memories with our children and spouse.
Many of the memories we make with our families are not planned and can be things that just happen. But as you know, even God had a plan. Setting things up for a nice craft or evening in couldn’t hurt. Planning an outing is even a plus. But even those can become tedious, everyday things for some people.
Matthew 2:10 says, “When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.” Who doesn’t want that reaction from their family while creating a lasting memory?
If you are looking for something a bit different for this season of giving, gifts, and love, here are some ideas for memory making and family time.
- Indoor Campfire – Light a fire and complete the experience with hot chocolate, marshmallows, and s’mores. This can also be a time to read stories to each other, make ornaments, share a favorite Bible verse/story or watch the Nativity Story.
- Kindness Elves - The Kindness Elves leave an idea for an act of kindness or service they hope the kids will do that day. It can be anything from smiling to everyone at school, making their siblings bed, or taking cookies to a neighbor.
- 12 Books of Christmas – Wrap a book for each of the 12 nights before Christmas. Each night unwrap a book and read it as a family. It will bring the family closer and create a love of family reading.
- Christmas Eve Game – Unwrap a new game and play it on Christmas Eve. Learning the rules and playing something new will be exciting and thrilling for the family. It could become an amazing tradition.
- Jesus’ Stocking – Everyone has a stocking, right? Why not leave one up for Jesus? Every day or so, family members can drop in slips of paper saying what they are thankful for or what their gift to Christ is this year. Each one is anonymous but they can be read aloud on Christmas Eve.
However you look at it, it is important to keep the Christ in Christmas! Spending time with family and sharing the love of God with them is one of the best ways to do that. Spend time in prayer with family and remember to have fun!