Devotional

We Need to Listen

The other day I was standing in the checkout line at the grocery store, when the little girl in the cart behind me began to chant to her mom in a lilting voice, “I’m not listening. I’m not listening.”

My mom turned to me and said quietly, “How often do we do that to Yahweh?”

As the mom continued to softly instruct, her daughter kept repeating the phrase, “I’m not listening. I’m not listening.”

Ouch. Yes, I do that too.

Sometimes we rush into God’s presence.

We have a lot of prayer requests to make. We want. We need. We pray. We seek. But do we listen?

Do we sit in His presence and allow the Holy Spirit to speak to our heart as we’re reading the Bible, or are we rushing on to check our devotions off the list?

I needed to learn that lesson from a little girl at the store.

When we find ourselves running in circles like Martha, we need to rest in His presence like Mary did.

We need to listen.

I’m finding myself at a loss for words
And the funny thing is it’s okay
The last thing I need is to be heard
But to hear what You would say

Word of God speak
Would You pour down like rain
Washing my eyes to see
Your majesty
To be still and know
That You’re in this place
Please let me stay and rest
In Your holiness
Word of God speak

~”Work of God Speak” by MercyMe

 

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Testimonies

Testimony Tuesdays: I Surrender All

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

Recently, I have been struggling with trusting Yahweh with my future.

It had been a subtle underlying thing that I had, for the most part, ignored. Most of it seemed so innocent. Maybe a thought here, or a dream there. None of that is wrong, but I had continually dwelt on that thought or that dream. I had “chewed” on it too long. I had chewed on it so long that it was nasty, but I didn’t want to spit it out. I wanted to keep those thoughts and those dreams.

It was the battle for the flesh. My flesh was winning–every time–and I wanted to stop it.

I tried everything that I could think of to stop it. I verbally talked to myself saying, “Peyton! What do you think you are doing? You must stop this!” I also put my hands into fists and beat the air. Nothing seemed to be working! I was frustrated and wanted answers. Why could I not STOP? I was angry inside, and sometimes that anger was displayed toward my family members. That frustrated me even more.

Finally one morning, I sat down to read my Bible and my hand moved to my journal.

I knew it was time to get things straight with Yahweh. I began to write:

“Sometimes it is hard to trust God and what He has in store for me. I don’t know what the next year holds and where He’ll lead me, but I need to trust Him with all my heart.  It seems the struggle gets harder at times, and at other times I don’t have a struggle at all.”

Then I wrote the words I’d resisted:

“Yahweh, I surrender my future to you. Pry it out of my hands and keep it from my reach. Help me to live for today!….Let each moment be for Your glory. Satisfy my heart with Your presence. Strengthen my faith….Yahweh, I want to lay it all down again. I have taken some things back and tried to do them my own way. Please forgive me…..May today be a day that I start a new journey. I am nineteen years old and I start anew and afresh. I desire You, Yahweh, and none other. Make Your path clear for me in Your timing. Help me to trust Your timing.”

From that morning on, I have surrendered all.

Surrender never happens once and then it is over with. We have to daily surrender to Yahweh. May each of us grow closer to the Creator and surrender our lives to Him. We cannot surrender alone and we cannot stop things on our own. We need Yahweh to get us through.

Photo courtesy of Sharon W

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Prayer Prompts & Guides

A Prayer for the Power of God and Boldness (from Acts 4)

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

When reading through the Book of Acts a month or so ago, I came across this prayer. It was an encouragement to me because of the way that the early believers were so bold in their faith. It is a blessing to know that we can still be emboldened by the Holy Spirit to share the Gospel and speak the name of Christ.

Being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them. When they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, Lord, thou art God, which hast made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is: Who by the mouth of your servant David had said, ‘Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things? The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ.’ For of a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together, For to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done. Now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word, By stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus. (Acts 4:23-30 KJV)

Let’s pray for boldness to proclaim the Word of God.

A Prayer for Boldness (based on Acts chapter 4)

You are Yahweh, and You made heaven and earth. You made the sea and everything in it. Grant Your servant boldness that I may speak Your word, that these things will be done by the name of Yeshua!

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Prayer Prompts & Guides

Guest Post: Finding Refuge in God (The Psalm 91 Prayer)

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

God is our Refuge.

Whatever you are facing this week, we pray that this prayer guide shared by our friend Katie will be an encouragement to you to seek refuge in the One who is faithful. While most of us are not facing literal “lions and cobras” as Psalm 91 mentioned, we each face spiritual battles in our lives that only God can help us overcome.

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Click for printable PDF: Psalm 91 Prayer Prompts

-About Katie-

Katie is a young woman who loves God and seeks to love Him more. God has been very real to Katie through challenges and victories, hard times and easy times, sickness, and health. She feels a vivid desire to help others who have struggled or who are going through struggles, to share the knowledge God has provided her. She wishes to share the message of a God Who redeems the hard times in our lives, Who turns the pain into beauty, Who takes the weak and upholds them in His grace. You can email her at thezebras91@gmail.com or check out her family’s ministry website www.SearchingForZebras.com

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Devotional

He Wants Our Hearts, Not Our Words

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

It had been a busy day.

I was working on yet another project, and instead of turning on music, I decided to pray to my heavenly Father while working. I began to tell Him how wonderful He is. And that’s when He spoke to me, “I want your heart, not your words.” That quiet impression caused me to pause and contemplate.

I had been busy for quite a few days. So much of it was in service to Him, but was I serving out of my own strength? Had I taken quality time to get to know Him better lately? Or was I treating Him as a pep stop, where I get a quick fix and rush on with life? Was I just speaking words, or was I giving Him my heart?

It’s easy to fit God into our schedule, and a bit harder to fit our schedule around Him.

It’s a struggle. But most good things are.

“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:33)

Prayer is a part of our relationship with our Maker.

Today, let’s give Him more than our words, let’s give Him our hearts.

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Poems

The Crossroads (a prayer poem)

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

 

~About the Author~

Amy Grace is a homeschool student with a passion for writing poetry to her beloved Savior. You can find her blogging at In Sun or Rain.

This guest post was originally posted on In Sun or Rain.

 

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Prayer Prompts & Guides

10 Prayers for Our President (From the Book of Proverbs)

In the book of 1 Timothy, we are told to pray for our leaders:

I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.” (1 Timothy 2:1-2)

Prayer is a way that we can make a difference in our country.

It might seem like our prayers don’t matter when it comes to praying for well-known leaders, but we know that the “effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (James 5:16b). Instead of complaining or becoming discouraged, we can choose to pray to the One who is most high over all the earth, and cast our cares upon Him (1 Peter 1:5).

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

President Trump needs us Christians to pray for him.

Having to make decisions for an entire country is not an easy job. We need to pray that President Trump will have wisdom (Proverbs 3:13) and will surround himself with counselors (Proverbs 15:22).

Here are ten prayers from the book of Proverbs to pray for our president:

Click for printable PDF: 

Color–10 Prayers for Our President
Grayscale–10 Prayers for Our President

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

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Prayer Prompts & Guides

Want to Go Deeper in Prayer This Year? (7 Ways to Pray More)

Are you wanting to go deeper in prayer this year?

Having a prayer life doesn’t just “happen.”

It takes choices. It takes faith. It takes abiding in Yeshua (Jesus).

Our busy schedules try to stifle it. Distractions hinder it. Sometimes even when we’ve set aside time to sit in God’s presence, our minds start drifting in other directions, and minutes later we realize that we’ve hardly even said a word to Him or listened to what He’s trying to show us.

I’ve been there. There are times when I feel my prayer life struggling, and times when it feels so alive. The good news is that every day we have a choice, and every year is a new start.

Here are some ideas to encourage your prayer life this year:

Listen to Music

Most worship songs are prayer put to music. When we praise God, it welcomes His presence into our everyday lives. Scrubbing baseboards, cooking dinner, or driving to town can become times of worship, so turn that music up.

Keep a Prayer Journal

Keeping a prayer journal can help you stay focused while praying. When I write a prayer to my heavenly Father, it’s often more reverent, thoughtful, and focused than when I say it. Plus, if you’re crazy about starting journals (like I am), this is yet another excuse to get a cute notebook (T.J. Maxx, y’all).

(For more inspiration, see our post: Keeping a Prayer Journal.)

Capture the “in-between moments”

So often the minutes of free time in our days are twiddled away, but they can be wonderful opportunities to take a break and rest in God’s presence. Do you have a few minutes to spare because you’re ready to leave the house early? (Confession: that doesn’t happen with me.) Do you have ten minutes of free time while the cookies are baking, or a minute before your toddler calls for you again? Each of these minutes are gifts from the Father.

Find a Prayer Partner

Prayer doesn’t have to be a lonely thing. Perhaps there’s a prayer group you could join, or maybe you have a friend who would like to commit to a regular time of prayer together (whether in person or on the phone). Can’t think of a prayer partner? Pray for one. If it’s God’s desire, He’ll bring along someone who will join you in prayer. Not only will this bring accountability and focus to your prayer life, it can strengthen a friendship in a special way as you seek His face together. Which leads us to…

Pray with Friends

After a chat on the phone or an afternoon spent with friends, prayer is a great way to close your time spent together. Also, if something comes up in your conversation that needs prayer, volunteer to pray right on the spot. It’s amazing the comfort and strength we can receive from God in those times. It might seem awkward at first, but I’ve found that it means a lot to friends.

Set Reminders

Set a reminder on your phone to pray at a certain time of the day, or place sticky notes around your home. Also, when you think of someone, pray for them. This is a great way to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17).

Use Prayer Guides

Not only will prayer guides give you inspiration, they can also help you stay committed to daily prayer. What are you wanting to pray more about? There are quite a few prayer guides online that might be just what you were looking for. (You can also check out our “Resources & Reviews” page for a collection of prayer guides and inspiration.)

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

What are some more ways to focus on prayer this year?

 

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Testimonies

Testimony Tuesdays: Prayer Changes Attitude

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

My family has always been a “together family.” If Mom goes grocery shopping, we all go along. It is just the way we have always done things.

About three years ago, we added another member to my family’s everyday life.

Not a child, as you would think, but my grandmother. I remember thinking about how much fun it would be to have my grandmother living with us. She could make delicious meals for us, go with us on family outings, and share her knowledge about life with us. A few weeks after she moved in, we realized that space was a major issue. All of us felt cramped.

As a family, we began to pray for guidance.

We felt as if Yahweh was calling us to move to a bigger house with my grandmother, but months passed, and it seemed impossible to find a house that would match our needs. Finally we found a house that was workable, but six months after moving in, we were getting cramped again. It was becoming frustrating. Grandmother didn’t seem to fit into our family any more. It brought tears to our eyes and frustration to our prayers. As much as we prayed, there was never a definite answer. We were divided over what we should do.

At several points on the journey, I got mad at God.

I didn’t understand why He had divided my family and why things like that had to happen. I stopped praying and started blaming. But slowly I began to pray again, and my attitude changed. The situation was the same, but my heart was being molded by the Almighty! He turned my life back to prayer, and in His timing, He answered our prayers.

Prayer brings us closer to God.

You may not have a situation like mine, but no matter how big or small the circumstances are, Yahweh is always there for you!

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

Click for printable PDF:

Color–Perseverance Prayer
Grayscale–Perseverance Prayer

When was a time that prayer changed your attitude?

P.S. Revelation 12:11 shares that one of the ways to overcome is by the word of our testimony. Sharing our testimonies of answered prayer is a powerful reminder to us and to others of how our God is faithful. Do you have a prayer testimony you feel led to share in a blog post? Please contact us at: sistersonourknees@gmail.com

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Devotional, Prayer Prompts & Guides

Coming into His Presence Just as We Are (Psalm 139 Prayer)

Photo courtesy of Jay Williams

When praying to the Creator of the Universe, it is important to be honest with Him. Yahweh knows our thoughts before we speak them. He knows everything about us.

I am reminded of a childhood memory.

My siblings and I would build with LEGO bricks. We had characters we created. I could have told you all about my minifigure–her personality, what she liked and didn’t like, and how she interacted with others. I determined each thing about her and knew everything. 

Yahweh is like that. He knows all about us, because He created us.

When you come to Him in prayer, be honest, tell him your heart–be you. Bring your burdens to Him and rest in the peace of knowing that He sees you with eyes of grace.

-Psalm 139 Prayer-

Father, You know me. Everything that I do is known by You. You know my thoughts and are acquainted with all my ways. Every word on my tongue, You know before I say it. Your hand is on me. Everywhere I go, You are there. I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Search me, O God, and know my heart. Try me, and know my thoughts. See if there is any wicked way in me,
and lead me in the everlasting way.
Amen.

Click for printable PDF: Psalm 139 Prayer

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