Tag Archive: pray


another week, another ‘Coffee with Jesus’ cartoon strip holding a mirror up towards us, this time in the area of prayer…

Psalm 46.10 reads, ‘Be still and know that I am God.’ quite often most of us forget the ‘be still’ part as illustrated really well here:

Coffee With Jesus: Not Talk

of course too often we also get the ‘and know that I am God’ part pretty wrong as well, but that’s another post…

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God parts the Red Sea using Moses

“Just part one ocean in front of me, once, God, and i will never doubt you again!”

that’s how i think sometimes. but a huge part of me knows it unlikely to be true. it wasn’t enuff for the Israelites [a day later they were whining about water so God made  it appear out of a rock, then it was food and God made bread appear six days a week, then it was about the fact that it was bread and so God sent meat and then finally when Moses goes up the mountain to meet with God they get tired and ask for an alternative God to worship…  [it doesn’t end well]]

but it’s a nice thought to have anyways – if God just does this big amazing impossible thing then i will believe-Him believe Him for ever and ever.

tonite, in the room of inspiration, i came up with the term ‘Pramnesia’ which i think a lot of us are inflicted with:

Pram.ne.sia

/pramˈnēZHə/

Noun

A partial or total loss of memory linked to matters relating to answered prayer.

we see or experience God answer prayer [in some small or big way] and then the next time we are faced with an obstacle or a difficult person or a huge loss, we forget completely how faithful God has been to us and either rail against Him, or forget about Him completely while we try sort the thing out in our own strength, or just completely fall to pieces.

now this becomes a ‘thing to hold in tension’ or a ‘the mystery of God piece’ when we add it to the fact that God is not a big one-armed-bandit in the sky – say the prayer, pull the leaver and instant win… sometimes God’s very real answer to prayer is “No!” and other times it might be, “Yes, but not now” and even other times it might be, “Absolutely yes, but completely not in the way you are expecting.”

another part to hold on to is this description of God in Ephesians 3.20: ‘to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us,’

actually, the Message sums it up pretty well: God can do anything, you know – far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us.’

and therein lies the point: God is able to do IMMEASURABLY MORE than ALL WE CAN HOPE OR IMAGINE.

i say this a lot, but i want to encourage you to start believing that perhaps we need to start hoping or imagining bigger. or at least more consistently.

so if you have been struggling with pramnesia, then my advice is to stop it.

let the answered prayers of the past be the catalysts for the bigger prayers you are going to pray for this day – i’m not talking prosperity doctrine at all but about kingdom doctrine – His kingdom here on earth as it is in heaven… or another way to look at it, ‘what this earthly kingdom would look like if God was King here.’

why not try this… for the next week, at the start of each day, pray a simple prayer inviting God to present an opportunity for you to: show Love to someone who is feeling down/speak to someone about something God has done in your life/have a conversation with someone you know by name but whose story you have never heard/highlight a person who you need to forgive or ask forgiveness from… whatever it is doesn’t matter, but pray a prayer inviting God to action in your life… and then be on the look out for the opportunity and take it.

and i’d love it if you returned here and shared some of those answered prayers once they’ve happened…

 

i saw this as a typical Facebook post, like, share piece and so can not claim that it is original, but also do not know what the original source is, so please be gentle plagurism police…

and while i am not a huge fan of “the 7 keys to financial success” or “118 ways to a better waistline”, this list feels like a good thing to give consideration to not as THE ONLY 10 WAYS TO LOVE or the TEN WAYS TO ACHIEVE LOVE PERFECTION or anything silly and conclusive like that, but more a sense of, ‘Hey, here are some good ways to improve the way that you love people’ – this is not exclusively how to love your husband/wife better, but i imagine they apply on an even deeper level then.

so walk with me through these ten not-all-so-easy suggestions of ways in which you can do better at doing one of the most important things of life… and i would LOVE to hear your thoughts and stories and examples as we work our way through these:

1. Listen without interrupting.
2. Speak without accusing.
3. Give without sparing.
4. Answer without arguing.
5. Share without pretending.
6. Enjoy without complaint.
7. Trust without wavering.
8. Forgive without punishing.
9. Promise without forgetting.
10. Pray without ceasing.

i will be dealing with each one specifically and in time each point above will be the link to it’s own post.

let the commentary begin…

my housemate Monkman [aka Aaron Condon] and i are trying to set aside a meal to fast and pray together every week and this week on Thursday we sat on the floor in the office and read through psalm 17 which was the next one i was going to look at. and when we finished we read through psalm 18. and then 19. and it was so refreshing just reading a bunch of psalms together – we didn’t really discuss in depth or anything but just soaked in God’s word… try it.

so psalm 17…

very big one in verse 4: ‘I have resolved that my mouth will not sin.’ – between gossip, and speaking things that break down and don’t build up, as well as below-the-belt across-the-line kind of talk, this one is something that has been in huge focus in my life and community this week. and i think it is so important to note how easily we can justify any of these when we do it [“it’s not gossip, it’s sharing/caring/concern”; “it was just a joke, i didn’t really mean that”; “oh, i’m not as bad as…”] but be able to distinguish how bad it is in others [“he is such a gossip”, “that girl is so negative all the time”, “wo, i can’t believe you went there”]

but the Bible has a lot to say about the tongue and how we can use it for evil as well as for good… ‘With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.’ [James 3.9-10]

proverbs 15 has some more key things to say about the tongue:

‘A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.’

‘The tongue of the wise adorns knowledge, but the mouth of the fool gushes folly.’

‘The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit.’

‘The lips of the wise spread knowledge, but the hearts of fools are not upright.’

‘The discerning heart seeks knowledge, but the mouth of a fool feeds on folly.’

[vs 1, 2, 4, 7, 14]

the psalmist says, ‘I have resolved that my mouth will not sin.’  If we could all live with that same kind of conviction, i believe we would transform the world. Speaking the truth in love, building up, holding people accountable, encouraging people in their gifting, warning those we love when they step close to the edge, speaking the name of Jesus more as an accompaniment to our actions…

psalm 17 has a lot more to offer, for sure, but i think that is enough for now.

I WANTED TO BE LOVED

I WANTED TO JOIN IN YOUR CLUB

YOU TOLD ME, “COME BACK WHEN YOU ARE NO LONGER GAY!”

 

I WANTED TO TAKE PART

TO BE A MEMBER OF THE FAMILY

YOU STATED, “WHEN YOU’VE STOPPED LIVING TOGETHER, WE’LL LET YOU PRAY!”

 

I HEARD OF THIS MAN CALLED JESUS

AND HOW YOU SAY HE IS THE ONLY ONE WHO CAN SAVE

BUT IT SEEMED THAT TO BELONG, YOU WANTED ME FIRST TO BELIEVE

AND TO BELIEVE IT’S EXPECTED THAT I SHOULD FIRST BEHAVE!

 

AND SO I STOOD OUTSIDE

ALONE, IN THE RAIN

FEELING THE EMPTINESS OF A SOUL CONDEMNED

NOT BY GOD, BUT BY MAN

 

BUT I FOUND OUT YOU’VE GOT IT UPSIDE-DOWN

I MET YOUR JESUS AND HE LOVED ME

AND LET ME KNOW THAT I BELONG

THAT SENSE OF BELONGING, LED ME TO BELIEVE

AND BECAUSE I BELIEVE, I CHOOSE TO CHANGE HOW I BEHAVE

SO MAYBE NOW I’M ‘GOOD ENOUGH’ TO WALK INTO YOUR CHURCH?

 

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