Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Priority of Prayer

A major part of our ministry is prayer.  We pray for over 2800 people every evening.  We also have a joint prayer time each morning for our immediate family and many extended family.  Father gave us this mantle and it has not been a burden to carry but a joy!  These past few months a lot of our prayer focus has been on Colorado and other areas of this country experiencing fires.  In Colorado they have had numerous fires burning many thousands of acres of land, forests, and homes.  Smoke has been in the air constantly in different areas of Colorado for most of this year.  As we prayed over family and friends in the path of these fires, Father showed us His protective hand over those we were praying for.

What an awesome responsibility some might say but we look at it as a privilege to lay our loved ones at Father’s throne and to trust Him with them.  The scriptures we also pray daily are Proverbs 3:5-6, the Prayer of Jabez (1 Chronicles 4:10) and The Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13).  As we pray we rest in Father’s total and complete care of those whose names we speak into His presence.  I wrote about prayer last year in March and I could not get away from Father’s instructions to speak about prayer again now.  Why?  Didn’t I say it all last year!  Not at all!  So much has happened in this past year to focus our attention on the need for prayer, those on our prayer list and the power of prayer.  We have seen lives changed by prayer.  We have seen healing of physical bodies, healing of marriages and hearts, healing of emotions and the spirit and we have seen families restored. We see the effects of constant, consistent, faithful, unyielding, confident prayer.  We add new names to our prayer list almost daily and Father knows that no one is exempt from our prayers.  When He gives people to us, they are on the list and we pray for them until HE tells us to remove them or they go home to be with HIM!  Of course that is the ultimate healing and restoration!

One day He will come for us and we will be with Him forever but for today, for now, He has a plan and a purpose for our prayer ministry.  I cannot tell you the excitement when we get that call or email and we hear how our prayers have been answered. Our hearts are lifted, our spirits soar, our lives are enriched beyond words just to pray and trust Father with the dear ones He has given us.  How is your prayer life?  I am reading an amazing book sent to us by a dear friend that tells about praying for strangers.  When our friend told us she was sending the book, she said, this is YOU! As I read though the book and listen to the stories of the author’s encounters for prayer, I am in awe that our Father works in such miraculous amazing ways to draw people to those willing to pray.  We have experienced it ourselves but reading about the author’s encounters has refreshed me again to all that has happened over the past 13 years of CKM. 

May you be encouraged to make prayer a priority in your life!  The Word of God is full of scriptures about prayer.  Pray believing and expecting and you will see the Glory of God manifested through your prayer life and the answers to your prayers.  Our God hears and He answers!  We have confidence and assurance! We pray and leave the results in Father’s hands!

Prayer is our responsibility to God.  It is addressing God in word or thought involving these:  praise, thanksgiving, confession, petition and intercession.  Father wants to fellowship with us.

Prayer is the means by which believers communicate with God and receive guidance for their lives.  Effective prayer depends on faith and a right relationship with God.”  Faith is essential to prayer. “Asking for oneself and for others (intercessions) is an important aspect of prayer.”

Intercession – seeking the presence and hearing of God on behalf of others.

Meaning of Prayer and Intercession: “Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications and prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.  For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior” 1 Timothy 2:1-3

Prayer of believers for believers: “For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.” Ephesians 3:14-19

Prayer for Healing: Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up.  And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed.  The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” James 5:14-16

Prayer for the Lost (Salvation): “Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved.” Romans 10:1

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Intimacy with Christ

What an amazing year this has been! I say that every year, at least it seems so, but this year bounded in with so much potential and yet great struggle. Why is that so? The world is in chaos, well, some don’t think so but we know that the world is in chaos, just look at the news. There are many interruptions in health, weather, finances, and even religion. Who is speaking to us today? We are hearing lots of voices and many are trying to sway us from our designated path of faith. They have some good arguments but they also promote lots of lies. The truth is not in them. The Lord told us that we would have many false teachers in the last days. Well, all that the Word has spoken about the last days is happening right now. On Friday mornings I am in a ladies Bible study and we are reading through the book of Isaiah. Oh my goodness how revealing this has been! Isaiah spoke as if he lived in this century, at this hour. He was speaking of Israel and all that the people of God were experiencing but you can see this country all through the message. I want to share some scriptures from that study and also encourage all of us to draw close to the Lord. That is where our strength, courage and great faith will abound because the days ahead will be challenging. We must develop an intimate relationship with Jesus. A deep abiding personal relationship where we hear Him and He hears us and we communicate on a deeper level than we have ever done. It is so needed for us to walk in victory through the last days. I am reminded of the need I had when I met Charley and we began talking about spending our lives together. I wanted to know him, his likes, his dislikes, his desires for the future, his goals, his hurts and his challenges. As we progressed in our relationship we began to see what made each other tick and how to interact with each other. After we married then we began to know each other in an intimate deep abiding and personal way. That has grown over 44 years of marriage, valleys and mountain tops and it continues to grow. How do you learn all of this? By communication! He talks and I listen. I talk and he listens. We share our deepest thoughts and ideas. That is how we have an intimate relationship with our Lord Jesus. We talk and He listens. He talks and we listen. We read His Word, His messages to us, from Genesis to Revelation, His message to us is powerful, cutting into our heart and taking out all the impurities and leaving us with refined silver and gold. That is how I see it and that is how it is with me. I want to have that purification process happen within my life. The scriptures I wanted to share are to encourage and bless you. Please go and read them for yourself. Time spent in God’s Word is never wasted time but so important for building the foundation that you will stand on for eternity. Praise God!!!

Isaiah 5:20-21 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!

And this passage that means so much to us!

Isaiah 6:1-8 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the temple. Above it stood seraphim; each one had six wings with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one cried to another and said: Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory!” And the posts of the door were shaken by the voice of him who cried out, and the house was filled with smoke. So I said: “Woe is me, for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.” Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a live coal which he had taken with the tongs from the altar. And he touched my mouth with it, and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your iniquity is taken away, and your sin purged.” Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”

Isaiah 33:5-6 The Lord is exalted, for He dwells on high; He has filled Zion with justice and righteousness. Wisdom and knowledge will be the stability of your times, and the strength of salvation; the fear of the Lord is His treasure.

Isaiah 35:1-4 The wilderness and the wasteland shall be glad for them, and the desert shall rejoice and blossom as the rose; it shall blossom abundantly and rejoice, even with joy and singing. The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it, the excellence of Carmel and Sharon. They shall see the glory of the Lord, the excellency of our God. Strengthen the weak hands, and make firm the feeble knees. Say to those who are fearful-hearted, “Be strong, do not fear! Behold, your God will come with vengeance, with the recompense of God; He will come and save you”.