Thursday, February 25, 2010


Our prayers today should be focused on what Jesus prayed for - unity:

20"My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: 23I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.
24"Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.

John 17:20-24

Do we seek unity, to be one, with other churches who believe in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior?

Or, are we promoting ourselves at the expense of what God is doing in another church?

In James 4:7 it says "Resist the devil" devil, Diablo, means to throw over, to divide, to split.

By our words and actions are we bringing division instead of unity to the body of Christ?

Pray that we may be one!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


Today our prayers will be about forgiveness.

"Just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive" Col 3:13

Not sure, what stuck out for you when you read that verse; was it dealing with your own forgiveness or having to forgive someone else?

Here's the deal. Until you've experienced forgiveness it's really hard to give forgiveness. Forgiveness is a gift; it's not something you can give yourself.

But what about forgiving myself?

It doesn't start there, not sure it ever gets there.

1 God, be merciful to me
       because you are loving.
    Because you are always ready to be merciful,
       wipe out all my wrongs.
 2 Wash away all my guilt
       and make me clean again.
 3 I know about my wrongs,
       and I can't forget my sin.
 4 You are the only one I have sinned against;
       I have done what you say is wrong.
Psalm 51

The first thing we have to understand is that our wrongs, our sin, is against God and God alone. The second thing is that He is offering to forgive us, to wipe out all my wrongs, to wash me clean and that is a gift. There is nothing I can do to earn that, it is totally a gift, a gift I accept or reject.

If we reject it we will be like David and say "I can not forget my sin", "I cannot forgive myself".

Have you accepted the gift?


"Forgive us our debts. Forgive us for our failures to keep honest accounts with our neighbors. Forgive us for refusing the gifts that are given and stealing what is not ours to have. Forgive us for using the gift of language to deceive. Forgive us for using the gift of sexuality to seduce. Forgive us for using the gift of strength to abuse and murder. Forgive us for using the gift of plenty to impoverish another."
(Eugene Peterson)

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Change me

This past weekend we looked at the Lord's Prayer and the parable that followed. I talked about how the verbs come, give, forgive, bring not, lend, ask, seek, knock are asked by one person to another, connecting people in away that things get changed. Prayer is action, not giving in to the way things are, it is a conversation that changes things.

Think about your request for change; is it more about changing the circumstances you are in or changing other people who are around you?

Today I would like us to focus on "personal renewal", about changing our own hearts.

I'm asking you to join me in praying what can be one of the scariest prayers in the Bible.

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
      test me and know my anxious thoughts.
 24 Point out anything in me that offends you,
      and lead me along the path of everlasting life.
Psalm 139

How many of us want God to test us, know our thoughts, to show us the evil that is in us?

That is a very hard prayer to pray if you are not seeking one thing.

1 If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. 3For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. Col 3:1-3

Where is your focus: on the things above or here on earth?

Do you see this time as preparation for the next?

God test me, show me, change ME!

Monday, February 22, 2010


Yesterday we talked about prayer being an intimate conversation. Think about a conversation you might have had recently where someone went on, and on, and on, and on…you get the picture. We would say that person is "babbling". Interesting thing, we get that word from when a people wanted to be their own gods and built a tower with their own hands. They didn't want or think they needed God.

If it is to be a conversation there needs to be pauses, commas, breaks, points of silence, otherwise it is just a monologue. That seems to be our primary method of prayer, we speak and God does all the listening.

I think we should start the week there; just by being silent and listening. Silence is a non-negotiable in prayer; Jesus did it by withdrawing, going somewhere, getting alone.

What about you?

How will you "be still and know that he is God"?

Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down, 13 and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied, 14 then your heart will become proud and you will forget the LORD your God, Deut 8:12-14