New Wineskins

Have you run into the grocery store bypassing the grocery carts because you only needed one or two items. Before you get to check-out your arms are loaded with other things you see. Something else you remembered you cannot get because your arms are loaded already.

Such is our going to worship without preparation and the proper vessel.

“But new wine must be put into new wineskins,
and both are preserved.”
Luke 5:38
“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels,
that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.”
2 Corinthians 4:7
” I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you;
I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh
and give you a heart of flesh.”
Ezekiel 36:26

Let us worship today in anticipation and prayer that the Lord enlarge our hearts, open them to receive and carry with us the new wine of His Word prepared for us.

Dear Father, you have preserved and prepared your Word for us. Open our eyes to see and our ears to hear the written Word. Open our hearts to conceive and receive what you have prepared for your people today. And let the Spirit of your Living Word, our Lord Jesus Christ, lead us through this week ~ for your glory and our joy. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Fran

Blessings in Intercession

A short note today in relation to last Saturday’s post Advocates for Bill and Terri:

I had thought to reference this during the week but did not have time.
Much of the week has been spent in intercession for Bill and Terri.
Too, I have spent a considerable amount of time reading Terri’s blog ~ having only known her a few months, I have kept up with Bill’s blog for years.

One thing I want to mention here is in reference to those who have been interceding. Have you been blessed by your intercession for them? I certainly have, and in the process been brought closer to the throne of grace.

As our great High Priest, he Lord waits for our petitions.

Do You Sense Your Prayers are Being Heard?
Does it ever seem that your prayers are not getting through? I was reminded of this possibility this week. When there is something between us and the Lord that has not been settled, our petitions are not heard.

Search me, O God, and know my heart:
try me, and know my thoughts:
And see if there be any wicked way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.
Psalm 139:23-24

When there is hidden sin in our lives, the way is closed to His presence.
Confession of our sins, repentance, and faith open the door to His heart.

Intercession is not just for others but it is a means of grace to strengthen our relationship with the Lord. He willingly accepts our requests and grants them when our hearts are clean before Him.

Be Blessed by Reading Their Blogs
Another thing I suggest, if you are not acquainted with Bill and Terri, is to peruse their blog sites. Their posts will be a blessing and minister to you. Whatever your state in this world, their witness of God’s grace will change your perspective of your own life. They testify of the fulfillment of God’s promises to us as His children.

Bill’s blog: Unshakable Hope

Terri’s blog: Diary of a Quadraplegic

Please continue to intercede for them and for all God’s people. Continue to pray to experience the power of the Holy Spirit in your life and the lives of others.

Gracious Father, thank you for a Spirit-filled week and for the preparation for our worship tomorrow. Fill us with your Spirit and teach us how to pray continuously and fervently. Search our hearts, try our thoughts and see if there be anything in us that is keeping us from you. Forgive, and lead us onward and upward in pursuit of your blessings for us and others. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Fran

Image: Google

A New Level

A few days ago, a friend made reference to her daughter’s piano teacher who is taking her daughter “to a new level.” Music students rate themselves as beginner, intermediate, or advanced. Not many go from beginner to advanced, but from one level to another, as they are trained and practiced in what they are being taught.

This can be applied to our lives as disciples of Christ. Does not our Lord Jesus Christ challenge us to a new level of wisdom and understanding of His grace? If so, we will find ourselves more humble than we can imagine. We will be filled and enabled to thrive on the abounding grace and the abundant life that He promised.

As we continue to see our need for humility; to desire this abounding grace; to pray and believe as we wait on Him, He will not fail to fulfill His promises to us, in us, and through us.

Growing in grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we now live, should be an ongoing process as we pray, read, study, meditate, and wait.

We should be advancing in our faith to higher levels of knowledge and holiness. This is a process working in us that will not exalt us, nor of which we can boast, but rather one that will humble us more and more.

It is the sinner dwelling in the full light of God’s holy, redeeming love ~ in the experience of that full indwelling of divine love, which comes through Christ and the Holy Spirit ~ who cannot be anything but humble. Not to be occupied with your sin, but to be occupied with God, brings deliverance from self.
Humility Chap. 8 Humility and Sin

Of your great goodness make known to me and take from my heart every kind and form and degree of pride, whether of evil spirits or my own corrupt nature and awaken in me the deepest depth and truth of that humility which can make me capable of your light and your Holy Spirit. Humility: the Beauty of Holiness

Dear Father, you, the God of all grace, have called us unto your eternal glory through Jesus Christ.  You do not leave us to grow by ourselves.  You know what we need ~ grace and more grace.  Work in us according to your own good pleasure that we may be a witness of the abundant life in Christ that humbles us and glorifies you. In Jesus’ name, I pray and praise you.   Amen 
(Excerpt from A Broad Review of Andrew Murray’s Humility
Send a message on our contact page for a free PDF.
Fran

Showers of Blessing

And I will make them and the places round about my hill a blessing;
and I will cause the shower to come down in his season;
there shall be showers of blessing.
Ezekiel 34:26

I will not make this a long post ~ only to bring awareness again of the need for prayer and supplication.

I don’t know what the weather is like in other parts of the world, but we are in a drought here in Georgia, with record highs in the 90s even in October.

In our last post, I presented the remedy for spiritual paralysis. We can apply the same solution for a spiritual drought. We must pray fervently for mercy from God, our Father, and Creator ~ to send His Holy Spirit in power. We need the outpouring of His Spirit to bring awareness of our need.

We need Him not only for physical rain on this earth and relief from the heat. We pray for Him to bless hearts with His presence and fullness.

We need His power to draw His people to His Word. We need a hunger for His Word. We need a thirst for His Spirit to apply the Word to our hearts and lives.

The Welsh Revival
I am always moved when I remember the Welsh Revival of 1904-05. I cannot recall if it was from the book about this revival or a different awakening ~ but the thing that moved my heart and prayers was a scene resulting from the moving of the Spirit.

Crowds were so large that the meetings were held outside. When a downpour came, no one left. They tried to protect their Bibles from the rain, but they would not move from hearing God’s Word.

I would have loved to have been there. Even today, the Word of God is so precious I could listen to it preached all day, every day. I pray this for God’s people.

Showers of blessing begin with a love for Him, for Christ, His Word, and His Spirit.

“And the tree of the field shall yield her fruit,
and the earth shall yield her increase,
and they shall be safe in their land,
and shall know that I am the Lord,..”

Ezekiel 34:26
Gracious Father of life and light, hear our plea. Pour out the blessing of your Spirit upon your people. Awaken, and by your grace, take away the stony heart and give us new hearts and new spirits that hunger for your Word and desires your Spirit’s fulness. We thank you for the truth of your Word; the authority of your Word; the glory of your Word; Christ, your living Word commanded in us by the power of your Holy Spirit. In His precious name, I pray. Amen.
Fran

Suggested Reading:
The Garden of God’s Word ~ The Purpose and Delight of Bible Study
What the Holy Bible Says about GOD’S WORD: A Six-Month Study