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Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Word of the year 2016

Here we are at the beginning of a new year, a new month... so weird to write 2016. Where did 2015 go? Even my children have remarked about days and months going by quickly... I guess we are having fun because time is flying by! ; - D

For my new word this year, I have chosen PRAYER. Last year my word was HUMILITY,  2014 was DENY (self), in 2013 it was JOY, in 2012 it was FAITHFUL. I recently saw the movie "War Room" and really enjoyed it. I thought a lot about its message of prayer, and purchased the book called "A Battle Plan for Prayer" by Stephen and Alex Kendrick. I also really enjoyed that book. It was an excellent read, and I wholeheartedly recommend it. I took notes as I read through the book. I have referred back to the notes often since completing the book. Some of the concepts I already knew, as a seasoned Christian, but I still enjoyed reading and being reminded of them. (i.e., types of prayer-- adoration, confession, thanksgiving, supplication and intercession.)

I also found a free prayer app that I like, called Echo. I can enter in my prayer requests and later pray when I am waiting for an appointment, driving in the car (alone, doesn't happen often!) and even when I am home. I don't need my notes and notebook in front of me to pray. I can easily enter and expand on a variety of requests, and check them off when they are answered. I can have the app remind me to pray at different times during the day.

This year I have begun a new devotional book called Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon.
On January 2, I read this devotional called "A Prayer for this Year". 
Colossians 4:2: "Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful."
It is interesting to note how large a portion of Scripture is devoted to prayer. We are furnished many examples, precepts, and promises. We scarcely open the word before we read, "Then men began to call on the name of the Lord." (Genesis 4:26) And just as we are to close the volume we hear the "Amen" of an earnest prayer (Rev. 22:20).
        Instances of prayer are plentiful: a wrestling Jacob; Daniel praying three times a day; a David with all his heart calling on his God. On the mountain we see Elijah, and in the dungeon we see Paul and Silas.
       We have multitudes of commands and myriads of promises that teach the sacred importance and necessity of prayer. We may be certain that what God emphasized in His Word, He intended to be conspicuous in our lives. He has said much about prayer because He knows we have a great need for it. So deep are our needs, that until we are in heaven we must never stop praying. A praying soul is a Christless soul.
       Prayer is the lisping of the believing infant, the shout of the fighting believer, the requiem of the dying saint falling asleep in Jesus. It is the breath, the watchword, the comfort, the strength, the honor of a Christian.
       If you are a child of God, then you will seek your Father's face and live in your Father's love. Pray that this year you will be holy, humble, zealous, and patient. Pray that you will have a closer fellowship with Christ, and pray that you will frequently visit the banqueting house of His love (Song of Solomon 2:4). Pray that you will be an example and a blessing to others. Pray that you will live for the glory of your Master. 
     The motto for this year must be, "Continue earnestly in prayer."

Some Biblical examples of prayer are:
Abraham, Isaac prayed for Rachel (Gen. 25:21), Moses spoke with God "as a man speaks to his friend" (Ex. 33:11); Elijah was an inspiration for New Testament believers as an example of prayer; David talked to God morning, noon and night (Psalm 55:17); Nehemiah, Daniel was willing to give up his life before he gave up his daily prayer time; Jesus who prayed all night before He chose His disciples, rose early in the morning to pray, His first sermon was about how to pray and not give up (Matt. 6, John 17); the early church (who devoted themselves to prayer, devoted= they stuck to it, insisted on it, clung to it) and Peter and Paul relied on it.

God never intended us to live out the Christian life or accomplish His work on earth in our own wisdom and strength. We can seek Him freely to guide us! What a privilege that we can talk to the Almighty God of heaven and earth at any time! So what am I doing on the computer... I have got to pray!

Some verses that I like related to prayer are:

Matthew 21:22
If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.

Mark 11:24
Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

John 14:13-14
And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

Acts 1:14
They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers. 

Acts 9:40
Peter sent them all out of the room; then he got down on his knees and prayed. Turning toward the dead woman, he said, “Tabitha, get up.” She opened her eyes, and seeing Peter she sat up.

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