Results of Word Survey

From the survey last week, seven responses netted forty-nine words, including three of my own that were different than your lists.

I asked for words from a Christian view that are important to our relationship with God and others.

Over the weekend I wondered and prayed about the connection of these words to each other and to us.

First the tally from eight lists, including mine:

Jesus appeared on seven lists.
Forgive (forgiven) appeared on seven.
Love appeared on six.
Grace on five.
Truth and Mercy on four.
God and Salvation on three.

Father, Kindness, Peace, Free, Life, Faith, Know (known), Sin (sinner) on two lists.

Each of the following were listed once on different lists.
Lord
Spirit
Sacrifice
Praise
Glory
Scriptures
Prayer
Encourage
Joy
Patience
Humility
Holy
Accepted
Eternity
Heaven
Hell
Family
Presence
Comfort
Sorry
Repentance
Obedience
Help
Death
Guilt
Welcome
Thank you

In a former post, we wrote of how names leave impressions and bring to mind the character of the person. This can be seen in this survey.

Let’s take the one formal name many of us listed.

Jesus is relative to God, Father, Lord, Spirit.
Forgiveness is through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Love and Grace are revealed in Jesus’ Sacrifice
Mercy, Truth, and Glory came through Jesus.

“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” John 1:14

Jesus means Salvation. Salvation comes only through Faith in Jesus.

Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Acts 4:12

A Sinner has remission of Sin through the Sacrifice and blood of Jesus Christ.
We Know God and are Known as Jesus is revealed to us and in us.
Life is given through Jesus, both physically and spiritually.
We are Free from Guilt in Jesus.
He is our Peace.
In JesusKindness, we are brought to Repentance to be Sorry for our sins and to live in Obedience.
Jesus in us, by His Spirit yields the fruit of Kindness, Joy, Patience and Humility.
We are Holy and Accepted in Jesus.
In Jesus, we have the promise of Eternity in Heaven and escape from Hell.
We experience JesusPresence through the Scriptures and Prayer.
In Jesus, we are delivered from the law of sin and Death
We say, “Thank you” and in Jesus, we live to His Praise and Glory.
We Encourage, Comfort, and Help others as we receive these in Jesus.
We are Welcome to the Family of God through Jesus

What do we learn from this survey?
In Jesus is hid all the important words we need to know. They are Words of Life. We could never list them all. He is all we need for this life and the next. The more we know Him the more we are amazed and grow in His wisdom and grace.
The words Light, Wisdom, Power came to mind while I was writing this post.

Please share scripture references to the ones that were on your list. We did not have time or room for these in this post.

Meanings of Names Who Contributed to our Survey
In case you do not know the meaning of your name, I am posting these for you who participated in our survey.

Tom, Thank you,
From the nameThomas:
Derived from the Aramaic tē’ōma (a twin). The name is borne in the Bible by an apostle who doubted the resurrection of Christ.
Tom, Praise the Lord for bringing you to faith, not by seeing but by the work of the Holy Spirit in your life. I like to think of Jesus’ image in you, making you a twin.
I pray blessings for your ministry to our Lord as you make known the name of Jesus, His work of Grace, Truth, and Love, through Scripture and Prayer, to help others to be Sorry and to know the Lord who will Forgive, and through His Kindness to you and through you, Encourage others not to doubt.

Jim, Thank you, 
Medieval diminutive of the name James meaning “supplanter”
The name has its root in ya’aquob (supplanting, seizing by the heel).
supplanter takes over or takes the place of someone else, usually on purpose.
Jim, You are living up to your name.
I pray you continue to wield the sword of truth as you address the Sinner and his Guilt, in the name of Jesus, the God of our Salvation, Grace, Faith, Mercy, and Forgiveness.

Bruce, Thank you,
The name Bruce arrived in Scotland with the Normans, from the place name Brix, Manche in Normandy, France, meaning “the willowlands”.
Robert de Bruce, a knight from Normandy, followed William the Conqueror to England.
There is no Hebrew meaning; though it’s not unlike the Hebrew name Baruch, which means “blessed.”
According to someone from Taiwan, the name Bruce is of Unknown origin and means “Happy warrior”.
Whether the meaning is the willowlandsblessed, or Happy Warrior, take heart in who you are following, how you are blessed in Jesus, and the warrior He has called you to be.
Bruce, I pray you Know the Presence of the Father; that you are Forgiven, Welcome and Holy through Jesus, His Love, Mercy, and Grace,  

Heidi, Thank you,
A pet form of Adalheid (noble one) and Hildegard (battle protector), Heidi is also bestowed as an independent given name. It became well known internationally from Johanna Spyri”s famous story “Heidi” (1880).
Heidi, your name fits you well. In Jesus, you are a noble one ~ a daughter of Zion ~ and a battle protector for His name’s sake. I pray that in Jesus. you Know you are Loved, Accepted, Forgiven and delivered from Death, Sin, and Hell, have an abundant Life in Him nd the promise of Heaven.

Amy, Thank you,
Your name was derived from the Middle English Amye, which is from the Old France Aimee (beloved), a name derived from the verb aimer (to love). It is not surprising that you included Love in your list.
Amy, I pray that knowing you are beloved in our Lord Jesus you are able to Love in Truth, Peace, Joy, Patience and Freedom. And because God is in you, you are a help and comfort to your God’s family and others.

Bonnie,Thank you,
Your name is derived from the Lowland Scotch bonnie (beautiful, good-natured and cheerful; this was derived from Middle French bon(good). Tour name fits you as one of Jesus’ followers.
Bonnie, I pray we all will remember to say, “Thank you” and continue to Praise our Lord Jesus Christ for His Glory, Love, Joy, and Peace, and show His Forgiveness and Kindness to others.

Pat, Thank you,
Patricia is derived from Latin meaning “noble”
I could not find more information on the meaning of your name but this one word is enough to describe one who is born of the Spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Pat, I pray that you continue in your ministry as a noble one ~ a daughter of Zion ~ one who knows GodJesus, and the blessings that ours through His Salvation; that you are Free to Love, and Forgive, through Faith in the Truth of His Grace and Mercy.  

Dear God and Father of our Lord Jesus, I praise you for revealing yourself to us by your Spirit. May all the glory be yours for your mercy, grace, and forgiveness. Bring forth in us the fruit of our Lord Jesus Christ~ love, joy, peace, kindness, patience, and humility. We thank you for delivering us from death and hell to the abundant Life, accepted and free by the salvation that is ours in Christ. Thank you for the gift of faith to be sorry for our sin; in repentance to live in obedience and sacrifice for your name’s sake. We praise you that one day you will welcome us to eternity in heaven as holy in Him. Keep us in Scripture, truth, and prayer that we may encourage, help and comfort our family and others. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Fran

Image: Google

Words of Life ~ BEAR

We begin in Genesis 4:13 as it relates to punishment. Interestingly and profoundly, God’s Word makes reference to the bearing of our sins, its punishment, and its remedy. As we have highlighted these, let us look personally and take them to heart.

H5375 nâsâʼ, naw-saw’; to lift; in a great variety of applications, literal and figurative, absolute and relativeaccept, advance, bring (forth), burn, carry

“And Cain said unto the Lord, My punishment is greater than I can bear.” Genesis 4:13

 “And Aaron shall bear the names of the children of Israel in the breastplate of judgment upon his heart, when he goeth in unto the holy place, for a memorial before the Lord continually.” Exodus 28:29

Leviticus 10:17 speaks of Aaron eating the sin offering to bear the iniquity of the congregation, to make atonement for them before the Lord. 

“And the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness.” Leviticus 16:22

And the Levites shall even bear their iniquity. Ezekiel 44:10

Moses was not able to bear all the people alone. Numbers 11:14

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“And even to your old age I am he;
and even to hoar hairs will I carry you:
I have made, and I will bear;
even I will carry, and will deliver you.:
Isaiah 46:4

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Even he shall build the temple of the Lord;
and he shall bear the glory,
and shall sit and rule upon his throne;
and he shall be a priest upon his throne:
Zechariah 6:13

 That Christ shall bear the glory. Glory is a burden, but not too heavy for him to bear who upholds all things. The cross was his glory, and he bore that; so was the crown an exceeding weight of glory, and he bears that. The government is upon his shoulders, and in it he bears the glory, Isa. 9:6They shall hang upon him all the glory of his Father’s house, Isa. 22:24. It becomes him, and he is par negotio-well able to bear it. The glory of the priesthood and royalty had been divided between the house of Aaron and that of David; but now he alone shall bear all the glory of both. That which he shall bear, which he shall undertake, shall be indeed the glory of Israel; and they must wait for that, and, in prospect of it, must be content in the want of that external glory which they formerly had. He shall bear such a glory as shall make the glory of this latter house greater than that of the former. He shall lift up the glory (so it may be read); the glory of Israel had been thrown down and depressed, but he shall raise it out of the dust. Matthew Henry

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H3205 yâlad, yaw-lad’; a primitive root; to bear young; causatively, to beget; bring forth (children, young),

The following are references to the everlasting covenant established with Abraham; revealed and fulfilled in Jesus.

And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him.” Genesis 17:19

“Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” Isaiah 7:14 (See reference below John 18:37)

H5445 çâbal, saw-bal’; to bear, bear a load, drag oneself along to carry(literally or figuratively), or (reflexively) be burdensome
The same word is used for labor and burden.

In the center of these references is the well-known prophecy from Isaiah of the Son, Immanuel, who would bear the iniquities of His people.

“He shall see of the travail of his soul,
and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge
shall my righteous servant justify many;
for he shall bear their iniquities.”
Isaiah 53:11

H6030 ʻânâh, aw-naw’; to answer, respond, testify, speak, shout the same word is used for answer and answered

Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.” Exodus 20:16

H5201 nâṭar, naw-tar’; a primitive root; to guard; figuratively, to cherish (anger):—bear grudge, keep(-er), reserve.

Leviticus 19:18 commands us not to bear any grudge but to love thy neighbour as thyself.

H4910 mâshal, maw-shal’;  to rule:—(have, make to have) dominion, governor, reign, (bear, cause to, have) rule(-ing, -r), have power.

Proverbs 12:24 relates to the diligent who shall bear rule.

New Testament

G3140 martyreō mar-too-reh’-o to be a witness, to bear witness, i.e. to affirm that one has seen or heard or experienced something, or that he knows it because taught by divine revelation or inspiration

 “The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.” John 1:7

“There is another that beareth witness of me; and I know that the witness which he witnesseth of me is true.” John 5:32

“To this end was I born, and for this cause
came I into the world,

that I should bear witness unto the truth.
Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.”
John 18:37

“For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.” 1 John 5:7-8

G5342 pherō  fe’-rō; to bear i.e. bring forth, produce; endure

“Abide in me, and I in you.
As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself,
except it abide in the vine;
no more can ye, except ye abide in me.”
John 15:4

 “Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach.” Hebrews 13:13

 G941 bastazōbä-stä’-zō  perhaps remotely derived from the base of G939 (through the idea of removal); to lift, literally or figuratively (endure, declare, sustain, receive, etc.) The same word is used for bare, bearing and borne

 “And whosoever doth not bear his cross,
and come after me, cannot be my disciple.
Luke 14:27

Must Jesus bear the cross alone and all the world go free?
No, there’s a cross for all His own, and there’s a cross for me.

“I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.” John 16:12

the strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, Romans 15:1 

“Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2

Paul said, “… for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.”Galatians 6:17

G2592 karpophoréō, kar-pof-or-eh’-o; from G2593; to be fertile (literally or figuratively):—be (bear, bring forth) fruit(-ful).

 “seed in good ground beareth fruit.” Matthew 13:23

G3114 makrothyméō ,mak-roth-oo-meh’-o; from the same as G3116; to be long-spirited, i.e. (objectively) forbearing or (subjectively) patient

“And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?” Luke 18:7

G4828 symmartyréō, soom-mar-too-reh’-o; from G4862 and G3140; to testify jointly, i.e. corroborate by (concurrent) evidence:—

“The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit,
that we are the children of God:”
Romans 8:16

 G5297 hypophérō, hoop-of-er’-o; from G5259 and G5342; to bear from underneath, i.e. (figuratively) to undergo hardship:—endure

 “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13

G4722 stégō, steg’-o; from G4721; to roof over, i.e. (figuratively) to cover with silence (endure patiently)

“Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.” 1 Corinthians 13:7

G5409 phoréō, for-eh’-o; from G5411; to have a burden, i.e. (by analogy) to wear as clothing or a constant accompaniment:—bear, wear,

“And as we have borne the image of the earthy,
we shall also bear the image of the heavenly.
1 Corinthians 15:49

G4064 periphérō, per-ee-fer’-o; from G4012 and G5342; to convey around, i.e. transport hither and thither: (carry) about

 “Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.” 2 Corinthians 4;10

G399 anaphérō, an-af-er’-o; from G303 and G5342; to take up (literally or figuratively):—bear, bring (carry, lead) up, offer (up).

“So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many;
and unto them that look for him
shall he appear the second time
without sin unto salvation.”
Hebrews 9:28

From the beginning, God brings us through His Word to see man’s need for a Savior. We are led to His promises and His provision for redemption, forgiveness, and restoration through Jesus, Lord and Savior to those whose sins He has borne on the cross.

Gracious Father of heaven, earth, and all life ~ we praise you for planning for our salvation before the world began, showing us our need and how you have reconciled us to yourself by putting all our sins upon Jesus. How true that only He, the spotless Lamb, could bear our sins, and only He is able to bear the glory. No wonder the disciples could not bear all when He was here. Thank you for eternity when we will be able to receive all you have planned for us. In Jesus’ name, I pray.
Fran

 

 

 

ABORTION

 “For thou hast possessed my reins:
thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.
I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:”
Psalm 139:13-14 

(Written years ago, this article was discovered in a notebook among many other notebooks. That I found it in this time of history is interesting. Laws concerning abortion have been passed to the degree that there seems to be no understanding or value of life anymore. The more laws, the more power is given to men and women to decide who lives.)

This was not written to judge those who have had abortions but to speak to a generation that sees nothing wrong with abortion. I ask the following questions to make some sense of the practice of deleting life according to man’s standards.

I use the plural pronoun, not that we all have considered abortion, but as citizens of a nation that has accepted it and made it a normal practice

What are we aborting?
To abort means we have the power to prevent human life from developing in the womb.

Not to abort means we believe that what starts as a seed planted in a physical body will develop into human life.

However we think about it – there is the potential of a full life in a fetus.

Why would we want to abort?
– because we have the power to make this decision?
We also have the power to choose life for one which has no power of its own.

Is it because we would have to bring up a child on our own?

Perhaps this is the means of God’s grace to show us His provisions for us and for the child.

For those who are single — is it because we would have to face the truth of our sin before God, our family, and friends? (This question can only be understood as we know God’s standard for intimacy with others.)

This could be God’s timing to bring us in faith and repentance to Him. He loves, forgives, and proves His care and provision in all things.

Some may say, “Because I have a miserable life.”
It does not have to be that way. This may be God’s plan to start a new life.

There is Help!
There are organizations that support women through pregnancy, for the mother to keep the baby or to consider offering and blessing a family through adoption.*

I would encourage the first and best thing: to keep a baby, to accept God’s provisions of faith in Him through His Son, Jesus Christ, to love and bring up this baby in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4). There is no greater blessing than for Him to love a parent and a child, for the mother (and father, if willing) to know His love and to love the child as He loves.

There is a great purpose and a promise in carrying a baby full term. It is believing God is the creator of all life and has given this child as a blessing. He uses even our faults and mistakes for His purpose and His glory.

I pray that the Lord will do a work in hearts to allow Him to lead through full-time pregnancy and to bring children to Him for His instruction and joy.

*If you need help to determine if you are pregnant, want an ultrasound, or considering an abortion, please check at the bottom of this link to find a pregnancy resource center near you. A mobile service is available in some areas.

(IF YOU ARE PRO-LIFE, CONSIDER MAKING A DONATION TO YOUR LOCAL PREGNANCY RESOURCE CENTER.)

For a look at the truth of Planned Parenthood, please see the movie Unplanned scheduled in theaters on March 29, 2019.

“….. CHOOSE LIFE.”
Deuteronomy 30:19

 Dear Father, we are in need of your Spirit’s conviction; to understand your will for our holiness. We need to know you as the giver of every seed of life and the sustainer of what you give. Search us and know our hearts. try us and know our thoughts. Turn us to confession, repentance and true life in Christ, in whose name I pray. Amen.
Fran

Image: Google

Grace Greater Than Any Sin

In 1911, Julia H. Johnston wrote the text of the hymn Marvelous Grace (Grace That Is Greater Than All Our Sin).

Marvelous grace of our loving Lord,
Grace that exceeds our sin and our guilt!
Yonder on Calvary’s mount outpoured,
There where the blood of the Lamb was spilled.

Refrain:
Grace, grace, God’s grace,
Grace that will pardon and cleanse within;
Grace, grace, God’s grace,
Grace that is greater than all our sin!

The emphasis of grace is taken from the text of Romans 5:20b.


but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,”

The apostle Paul, in writing to the church in Rome, compares the sin of man (which we inherited from the first man, Adam) to the grace of God (which is His means for our salvation through the person and work of His Son, Jesus Christ (the second Adam).

Grace exceeds but is not excessive; no more than is needed. None is wasted. Grace wins over any sin of His children, overcoming sin and revealing His grace through us to others.

As I have sung this hymn through my childhood and into my adult life, in relation to Paul’s letter, God has revealed the power of His grace as paramount to the power of sin in my life. The truth of His grace to related to our own sins, and the sins of all believers (vs. 4).

This past week, He has shown me something even greater.

Grace Greater Thank Any Sin or Circumstance

What place does grace play in our relationships to other people, believers and unbelievers?

If His grace exceeds our sin and our guilt; if the blood of the Lamb was spilled; if His grace pardons and cleanses us within, what happens to this grace when someone sins against us, hurts or disappoints us?

Do we forfeit His grace when someone offends us?

Or does this same grace ~ grace that is greater than all our sin ~  remain strong and prove to be greater than anything man can do to us?

If a wealthy man meets a poor man, does the poor man, through his status, take away his wealth?

A wealthy man does not change. He may, in generosity, offer the poor man money, food, or whatever he needs, but the poor man has no power to make him poor.

In the same way, we who are born of the Spirit of God’s grace, made rich in heavenly blessings, do not give up our status as God’s children by allowing the person who offends us to take away our grace. Rather, we respond to those who offend us, or who sin against us, by remembering who we are, in Christ. We, in grace, forgive, pray for them, bless them as we would our enemies (Matthew 5:44), and return good for evil (Romans 12:21). Grace abounds through us, even beyond the sin of unbelievers.

Grace That is Sufficient for All Things

Paul also speaks of grace that is sufficient in weakness and infirmities. (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

This is the amazing, marvelous, infinite, matchless grace of our loving Lord living and reigning within us. God’s grace rules and wins over all else.

Gracious, heavenly Father, whose love for us exceeds our expectations, and whose grace is greater than our greatest sins, continue to show the extent of your love and grace through us to others, even when they offend or betray us. Make our relationships and our circumstances the means of revealing your greatness and power in all things. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Fran

The Conclusion of What Matters

How amazing these last three days have been, and how blessed to see how God carries us through what He begins in us to where He wants us to be. When I write it is usually because I need to learn something new, or to confirm and shore up what I have been learning. Such is the case with the last post, What Matters?

The following are quotes from those who responded to the question.

Gail replied, “how we treat each other”

Jean, summing up her answer, which is worthy to be considered by us all, and in the same path that the Lord has been leading me as we have contemplated this question: “Peace with the Lord, this relationship of continuing to learn of His grace and mercy; He is our life as a loving Savior and Father, a faithful God. He is all in all.”

David expressed the desire for his family ~ “the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ that he has experienced.”

Andi: “preparing ourselves and others for the second coming of Christ; happiness and protection for children and grandchild.”

Lee: “resting in the finished work of Christ”

Joey: “God and people, in that order”

Kim: “knowing Him”

Gadol: a personal matter for “fulfillment of purpose, vision, call and will of God”

These were all good answers that attest to another thought.
What matters depends on who and where we are at any given time in our lives. It depends on our circumstances and our relationships. From these thoughts let us find a general answer that applies to all children of God, living as joint-heirs with Christ in His kingdom. What matters to us will be different than what matters to those of this world, who do not claim an inheritance in the kingdom of God.
What matters to those outside the kingdom are the things of this world, their possessions, their families, themselves. We will not list those things here, but let’s follow on to a conclusion of what matters to us.

What matters to us as God’s children can be summed up in one word, overall.

GOD matters ~ first, because He is our creator and redeemer, He has given us life twice, and continues to sustain us as His people, preparing us to share His glory, eternally.

God, the Father, the Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit in each of their roles matter in every life, in every circumstance, in every relationship, as He becomes our main relationship and unites us in relationship to others of His family.

Prayer matters because this is His gift to us as His children and the means of communion and contentment with Him that carries over into our relationships with others.

God’s Word matters because He teaches from His Word what matters in our relationships. Love might be the first thing that comes to mind, but love alone, in how we perceive love, may not be enough. We see the manifestation of love in humility, commitment, faithfulness, discipline, accountability, patience, kindness, forgiveness and other marks of Christ’s nature and disposition in us. These apply to our relationships with the Lord our God and with others, even if they are not of the “household of faith.”

It matters that we keep the same obedience to the Lordcomposure, confidence, and self-control with those who are of the world.

This brings to mind another matter, that of light. No one can live without light. This light is given for new birth into His kingdom through the gospel, the good news of our Lord Jesus Christ. The gospel matters to us and to His church for the matter of our salvation.
We need a certain time of physical darkness, for rest and sleep, but spiritual light is needed for the darkness of the mind and spirit. This too is given us by His Spirit in His Word so that we know how to live in this world, holding forth ‘the word of life” that is ours in Christ.

We learn about other things that matter from God’s Word, such as Philippians 4:8: “that which is true, honest, just and pure, that which is lovely, of good report, of virtue (excellence) that which is worthy of praise

What matters to God?
If we continue to think and write about it, we could go on and on, but hopefully we have posed a question that our hearts will consider as long as we live in this world, so that our Lord will continue to teach us what matters in His kingdom, in our lives, and our calling to serve Him in His kingdom. You and I matter to God. At one point this week we had considered that God is over all and that everything matters to Him. How then should we look at everything? Whatever we know and wherever we go, we should consider how God wants us to relate to the people and circumstances in which He places us. As Gadol pointed to the call and will of God, it matters to God how we respond as His people to those around us, in obedience and acceptance to where He wants us to be to fulfill His plan in us.

When looking in His Word for the word “matter” or “matters” we found one reference from the book of Ecclesiastes. Before we end with this, we will add one more to our list, that of wisdom. How does wisdom tie in with Ecclesiastes 12:13?

Since we are in the area of what matters to God, what other things from His Word would you add? What other things matter to God? We have but to read and glean these things that matter to God, our Father and to us.

Gracious heavenly Father, thank you leading us to consider what matters, and bringing us to see that the answers come from you. Thank you for being all that matters and that everything and everyone matter to you. Bring us to understand more and to find our contentment in you and your kingdom alone through the salvation that is ours in Christ. In Jesus’ name we thank you and praise you. Amen.

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Praying For Our Nation ~ Week 5

“In the fifth petition we pray that God, for Christ’s sake, would freely pardon all our sins, which we are the rather encouraged to ask, because by His grace we are enabled from the heart to forgive others.” Shorter Catechismunknown-1

Forgiveness is a revolving grace that begins with God, working His love and forgiveness in us, and through us to others. Subsequently, we can confidently ask for forgiveness for our own indebtedness to Him, which is more than anyone could owe us. This grace is characteristic of God’s people, those who share space in His kingdom. How can we not love and forgive, when our Father has forgiven us?

Is there bitterness in your heart toward God or another person? Resentment is the spirit of oppression, and the enemy’s greatest weapon, working from within to destroy.

The condition of any single life, family, or nation, can be summed up in the total of our grievances and vengeance against others.

Where is Our Freedom?

We are concerned about our freedom here in America. We are already in bonds to the oppressive spirit that rules in the hearts and minds of men. What we see from those who desire to govern this nation is the same spirit of this nation. We are in need of God’s intervention by His Spirit to bring us to repentance, to lead us in truth and righteousness; to overcome this spirit within us.

Our nation and the world will remain under threat until we learn to live in love and care for our heavenly Father, our Lord Jesus Christ, and each other. Let us consider and examine our own hearts to know for sure that we have trusted the heavenly Father’s love and forgiveness for us.

Gracious Father,  forgive us of our rebellion, our pride, and covetousness; forgive us our anxieties and unbelief. Forgive us our discontent and impatience; forgive us our neglect and slothfulness. We need you to examine our hearts, to try our thoughts, to know if there is any bitterness that we hold against you or any other person. Reveal your love and forgiveness to us by the power of your Holy Spirit. Bring us to repentance, that we may trust you in all things, to live in peace with you and our fellowman. Heal hearts in this nation and other nations by the peace of your Son, in whose name I pray. Amen.

“O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive; O Lord, hearken and do; defer not, for thine own sake, O my God.” Daniel 9:19

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A World in Crisis

Was the whole world in crisis when God sent Jonah to Nineveh? It might have been, had God not saved that city.  In this year of 2016, all nations are experiencing some kind of crisis, but especially here in the USA.  At no other time in history have we seen such a lack of hope for a sensible government to rule this nation.  Where is our hope as we near the time of an election for a new president?635174824587222334sad-child-divorce
Are we to sit around and wring our hands? Are we to be concerned about the condition of our nation and the world? Certainly, we should be. But how are we to respond to the reality of the crisis and uncertainty that we now face?

It does not help to send emails about the character and the secrets of candidates that are running for office. This seems to stir up more anxiety and chaos.

What are we to do? Is there anything we can do?

As Jerry and I are watching the scenario from our little corner of the world we continue to pray.

We believe that there is hope, for with or without it, the whole world is affected.

Without hope, the chaos will continue and with continued crisis comes destruction.

When God sent Jonah to Nineveh, Jonah, at first, refused to go. Personally, it seems that a boat to Tarsus would be easier for me, than launching out into the deep to share this article. I am not a prophetess, nor is my intent to preach, but to share a simple message of wisdom and grace from our heavenly Father.

When Jesus’ disciples asked Him to teach them to pray, they had no idea that the prayer He gave them would fit every occasion, especially for times of crisis. I believe that God, our Father wants us to listen to Him and perhaps for the first time stop whatever we are doing and take a fresh look at our Lord’s Prayer.

Wherever you are, in the USA or another country, please put aside whatever seems important to you right now, and consider that God is listening and desiring us to come to Him at this time of crisis. In the days ahead please take time with your family and church to consider the importance of this prayer.

What does He want to hear?

“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be thy name.”

Take some time to meditate on this first petition. Is He your Father? Are you honoring your heavenly Father in your heart and life? Does your life witness to others that you are a child of God?  Would your character qualify you to govern others?  Do you desire His rule in your life and this world? Do you trust Him to rule over all things, according to His will? Are you encouraging others to trust Him instead of putting their trust in men and our circumstances?

“Thy kingdom come.”

Do you desire His kingdom ruling in every area of your life? Do you see Christ as King of kings, and Lord of lords in your own heart and over the whole world?

“Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”

If we see where Christ is ruling at the right hand of the Father, with all authority in heaven and earth, all creatures and angels are surrounding and worshiping Him.

Is Christ the center of your life? Does your world revolve around Him? Are you following Him daily, looking to Him for all of life; casting your crowns before Him to glorify Him for His grace and goodness in every area of your life? Are you grateful for Him and His sacrifice for you that you may have eternal life in Him? Do you seek His will in all that do?

“Give us today our daily bread.”

Many do not have daily bread, yet most of us have more than we need. Are you God’s means of answering the prayers of others who are in need by sharing the blessings that God has given you? Are you content with the simple things and letting Him be the fulfillment of your life?

“And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.”

Are you withholding forgiveness from anyone?
A nation’s crisis can be summed up in the total of our grievances and vengeance against each other. Resentment is ruled by the spirit of oppression and is our enemy’s greatest weapon. How can we not love and forgive, when our Father has forgiven us? Our nation and the world will remain in crisis without our love and care for our heavenly Father, our Lord Jesus Christ, and each other.

“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.”

We start with ourselves, praying this personally and for our families, the church, and the world. We must each take an account as we consider how we live and lead wherever we are. As we look to Him for His continual leadership, we are the example of His goodness, and His power to keep us from temptation.

Can We Make a Difference?

We could concentrate on one petition each week during the next six weeks; asking the Holy Spirit to search our hearts to reveal His truth to us personally ~ then during the week of the election, praise Him for His kingdom, His power, and His glory.

Can this prayer make a difference in the middle of our crisis? Only as we come to our Father, in repentance, in faith, in love and obedience will we know how He will make the difference, first in our own lives; then, in His timing in this nation and the world.

Please join us here on this blog each week to pray together for God’s will in this next presidential election.
Let’s Pray Together For Our Nation  ~ Week 1
Praying Together For Our Nation  ~ Week 2
Praying For Our Nation ~ Week 3

Two months ago He led me to write a little book, First Things That Last Forever. It is the basis from which I write this article. The eBook is free. Please read it, and pass this article and the link to others. Our Father wants us to come to Him with genuine humility and love; with hope and anticipation of a merciful answer.butterfly-1140x460

Dear Father, hear our prayers; send your Holy Spirit; rend the heavens and come down as the melting fire burneth, and make your name known among the adversaries ~ beginning in our own hearts and lives.
FOR THINE IS THE KINGDOM, AND THE POWER, AND THE GLORY, FOREVER.
In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen
SEE FOLLOW-UP  ~  A CRUCIAL SEVEN WEEKS

Fran ~ 2016

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