If you arrived here today at this very hour it is not a coincidence. It is not by chance or happenstance. The LORD, God brought you here. There is much work to be done in the Kingdom of God here on earth. God, Himself, has appointed you to participate in His redemption plan.
So, Welcome! We are about to embark on a fantastic journey together. A journey that will certainly leave all of us changed. Dare I say, Forever! YES! We are going to learn how we can know the Lord’s will, His character, and His purposes for our lives. Does this sound impossible? Perhaps, but God desires each of us to know His will, character and purpose. Even more fascinating, He desires to set us on a life journey that is so fantastic we could never dream it up in a thousand years.
What this journey entails:
This weblog was born on May 1, 2006 it’s purpose is two-fold. First, to honor the Lord Jesus Christ. Second, to offer practical help and encouragement to the followers of Christ.
What I will share with you throughout this series is the practical knowledge and practice of “knowing God.” I don’t pretend to have everything figured out. Those of you who read my posts regularly know I mess up and mess up big at times. I don’t always get it right. What I can tell you, however, is how my relationship with the Lord developed and how I am able to pray dangerous prayers without fear.
Do you want the assurance the heavinlies move when you pray? Then let’s get right to it.
Lord, our God, today as we read this prayer, place a fresh anointing of the Holy Spirit upon each of us. Stir our heart and soul with conviction and to be expectant about our future with You. Prepare us for a deeper understanding of Your heart for people. Lord, when you cry for the lost and the weary, let us cry. Lord, when You reach out to save, let us be Your hands, Your feet, Your voice and Your eyes.
Father, as we prepare for this journey grant us the commitment to see it through. At the end awaits a new life, a changed heart, and saved loved ones. Father, I especially ask for You to instill a desire in us to spend time alone with You. In Jesus name, Amen.
The first part of our journey will cover some of the practices which grew my understanding of our Lord and His will and grew my prayer life. The second part of our journey will cover prayer and faith. These are common concepts, yeah, been there stuff. However, over the years in ministry I have discovered many Christians struggle in their prayer life and need help and encouragement to pray life-changing prayers.
So ask yourself now these questions: 1) Do I know God’s will for my life? Do I know how to pray in God’s will? Am I afraid to pray dangerous prayers? Does God’s word abide in me? Do I want my relationship with Christ to be richer in a year from now?
I know my answers and I WANT more of JESUS this year!
As we move through this process I will leave you with an assignment and a few questions. Please find yourself a journal and begin writing down the questions and working on the assignment. Don’t fret. It is easy and it will be a tremendous help to grow your relationship with Jesus.
Let’s begin at the beginning:
What is the bedrock of our faith? In the early years of my marriage to an atheist I struggled with the many questions my husband would ask me. What I realized was my faith and knowledge of God’s word was based upon what others had told me and what I heard in sermons. I did not know what God’s Word said because I had never actually read it. I couldn’t answer my husband’s questions and I had no idea where in the Bible I could find scripture to reply with a knowledgeable answer.
Last February I had a chance visit with a Christian woman whom I adore. She has been the leader of a worldwide Bible study ministry for years, Kay Arthur. I literally tangled up with Kay at a Deeper Still Conference in San Francisco. Kay stepped out into the audience, stopped in front of me. We reached out to exchange an embrace and my large and inconvenient earring tangled with her cordless microphone that was hanging on her ear. What a mess. We both giggled as we untangled. What a gracious woman. Sheesh I was embarrassed!
The next day my travel companions and I had another chance meeting with Kay at the Airport. Kay remembered me from the tangle earring incident. I turned red again. But, I began to tell her about the unequally yoked ministry and asked her for a word of advice. Kay immediately responded, “Keep them in the Word.”
It really is simple. The Word of God changed my life. On June 13, 1998 my mother gave me a 365 daily bible. This Bible is organized as a daily read over 365 days a year. It includes reading in the Old Testament, New Testament, a Psalm, and Proverbs. The translation is easy reading, New Living Translation.
I remember the date exactly because the day I began to read it I wrote the year next to June, 13. I have read through the Bible every year since then.
Today, I KNOW what God’s word says because I have read if for myself. God’s word abides in me.
Now I know there is some spicy discussion among bloggers this January about methods and assignments and must do reading. A daily Bible may not be a fit for your life. You may already have a daily reading practice. Wonderful.
However, if you aren’t reading daily and want your life to be different in a year from now, start with this Bible reading plan. Order a bible online or head to the bookstore. Let me add a few thoughts here.
Daily reading of God’s word may seem at first like a duty. It is a duty to set the alarm 30 minutes earlier to meet with God. It may appear to be a duty to push through the chapters when you are tired. It may look as if you have a million things on your list for the day that are far more important. I will make you a PROMISE.
DUTY WILL TURN TO DESIRE!
When you are regularly meeting with the Lord through reading and prayer, you will see your life change. In fact, every day I set my alarm to go off at 5:45a.m. I want to be certain to have an hour to meet with God before I do anything else.
I crave my time alone in prayer and with the Word. It is the best time of the day. I cannot function if I do not meet with the Lord every single day. No matter where I am, I bring my Bible, I get up early and read and I pray. Every minute no second I have invested in this relationship has come back to me in immeasurable ways.
Don’t become obsessed with the reading plan itself. Read what you can in 15-20 minutes and allow some time for prayer. Perhaps you will only read a chapter from the New Testament or a Psalm. Read something everyday. When you read a particular passage and a line or a word jumps out at you making an impression upon you, underline it. This could also be a passage you can bring to God in prayer. We will cover praying through the Word in later posts. You will be amazed how God works through these specific passages as the years pass.
Questions for the week:
1) Will you commit to daily reading God’s word?
2) Will you create a quiet place to read, where distractions are minimal?
3) Will you try it for at least 30 days?
Assignment: Ask the Lord for guidance and help to create your 30-minute appointment with the King on a daily basis. Ask your husband to help you. Tell you kids that you are going to start reading every day at (time) see if they would agree to try not to disturb you. Get up early.
Next Friday we will jump right into prayer. The best is yet to come. I hope to offer you the motivation you need to pray like you have never prayed before.
This week you have a lot to work on. Get a 365-day Bible if you can. If not, read a chapter from your own. Set an appointment with the King and keep it.
Give me some feedback. If you read daily, tell me what you do. If you don’t, tell me what your plan is for the week.
For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
Be Blessed, Lynn