Time With the Family – The Power of Prayer Pt. 2

In my last Time With the Family post, I had just begun to address intercessory prayer. I left off asking you to consider who in your life has a need for our prayer on their behalf? What is God’s will for your prayers regarding that person?

Think hard about that second part. It’s so much more than just praying what you want for their lives.

Reasons to Pray

“Dear God, let my child do well in school.”
“Lord, please take this cancer from my friend.”
“Jesus please help my sister to see how wrong her behavior is.”

None of these is inherently sinful. They’re good wishes. They’re loving wishes. But they’re our wishes.

And that’s what it all comes down to….In this world, there will be suffering. There will be things that don’t make sense. Had I lived in the days of Christ, I’d have prayed that God keep Jesus from being crucified. Looking back now, we all know why it was so important that He did die on that cross. We now know the true love and beauty in God’s perfect plan for our Salvation but had I been there, in that day and time, I could never have known the wrongness of such an innocent and love-inspired prayer. Continue Reading →

Time with the Family: The Power of Prayer Pt. 1

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Loss. Pain. Fear. Uncertainty.

Our world is full to overflowing of inexplicable hurts we seldom want to face. All you have to do is look on the internet or turn on your local news and you’re inundated with images of violence, warfare, riots and civil unrest. Suicide. Depression. Domestic Violence. Bullying. With everything coming at us so fast, this week’s devotional message on the power of prayer couldn’t have come at a more appropriate moment.

In a departure from the usual, our devotion time this week was led by one of our organization’s strongest prayer warriors, Tim’s mother Harriet. Reading to us from an excerpt based on a true story about another praying mother, she shared the following:

There was a woman who prayed for her children three times a day every day until the day she died at the age of 91. At the time of her death, only 6 of her 12 children had come to know the Lord. She died, never knowing if the other six would ever know Him at all. To make a short story shorter, more than 15 years later, the tally had changed: 10 saved and 2 to go. Her oldest son, the 10th to come to Christ, did so after a neighbor felt compelled in a dream to invite him to church. He later said that he could “hear his mother’s voice calling out his name in prayer,” just as he had his entire childhood, and that very day he accept the Lord. He was 92!

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~ Paraphrased from the short story: “Eternal Prayers” in Mark Batterson’s Draw the Circle ~

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Time With The Family: Lessons in Teachability

teachabilityIn a recent post, I talked a little about how I came to be here and why it is so important to me to share the incredible lessons from our devotions time here at New Leaf Publishing Group. This next lesson is dear to me. I hope you enjoy it too.

As we gathered together, Tim opened our lesson with a question: What is the key component to being truly successful?  Of course we thought of many factors and voices piped up around the room but none of us hit the answer he was looking for.  That answer: Teachability.

Even as the word left his mouth, I recognized the truth of it.  Honestly, when you sort through your memories of every successful person you ever knew, you may not pick up on this right away; however, when you start to compare them to those you knew could have been accomplished in one way or another and weren’t, that’s when the picture becomes clear.   Those who choose to remain unteachable, never learn to make use of the gifts God has given them and so they fall short of their dreams and potential.  It’s so simple and yet so eye-opening when you really think about it.  It makes you ask yourself, “How teachable am I?” Continue Reading →

Time With The Family: An Unexpected Blessing

time_with_family_an_unexpected_blessingStarting a new job… When did you do that last? Was it something you liked? Something you knew how to do already? Or were you like me, diving head-first into a new and unfamiliar world, not sure if you would even be up for the task?

Yes I admit, I had no idea what I was doing eight months ago when I joined the team at New Leaf Publishing Group. All I knew was that I needed this. I was desperate. I was working in a miserable place with so many angry people and I was becoming one of them.

After nearly 15 years in the same industry, my income was nowhere near enough to support my family and I hadn’t been to church in more years than I could hold my head up to admit… I had stopped leaning on God and we all know how well that works. Needless to say, you could almost see control of my life slipping through my fingers and I knew something had to change but I just couldn’t figure out how to get back to God.

Sadly, when I came here, my gratitude for the opportunity was so heavily shadowed by my fears that I just couldn’t see anything else. I’d never done this before.  What if I couldn’t do the job? What if I couldn’t play the part? I looked around at these people who prayed together and went to Bible study and were leaders in their churches and I couldn’t see how I could possibly represent this place. But God truly is amazing… Continue Reading →