The Habit of Prayer

Cultivate the habit of praying before you speak – just a quick, “Lead me, Father” will enable me to guide your thoughts and words to help those who hear you.

Meditation Thought: “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” (Ephesians 4:29)

“I have already given you the concept that people should be enriched as their lives touch yours, and not degraded. Cultivate the habit of praying before you speak – just a quick, “Lead me, Father” will enable me to guide your thoughts and words to help those who hear you. I love all of you – I want open channels to pour my loving guidance through, that we may have a communion of family – think in terms of “the more the merrier” as we expand acquaintances into our family – the more love is shared, the more it grows.”

Reap in Season

No matter how tempting it is to pluck the fruit before it is completely right (ripe), it is best to have patience and wait for complete maturity. Only through My Word given in various forms can you know when the fruit is ripe.

Meditation Thought: “…in due season we will reap…” (Galations 6:9)

” ‘In due season’ – not in your season. Many things are made better through the passage of time – more mature, even changing completely sometimes. They can be properly used in the right situation only when they are allowed to come to their maturity before use. No matter how tempting it is to pluck the fruit before it is completely right (ripe), it is best to have patience and wait for complete maturity. Only through My Word given in various forms can you know when the fruit is ripe. You need to be observant, to have patience, and be willing to check time and time again as to the state of the fruit. It is there for you, but you must make your own effort to bring it to your benefit.”

Unlimited Possibilities

We have the Power of God within us – think of that, unlimited power within our own bodies, minds, spirits. We need only use the key He gave us…

Meditation Thought: “And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us.” 1 John 3:23

“Commandment” – command is not a statement, it is not a request: it is an order. We believe in Jesus: believing implies we accept Him for what He says He is: we do not doubt that He is the Son of God, we do not doubt his statements are true. If we accept that they are true – then because of His obedience to the Father, we have claims to unlimited possibilities.

We have the Power of God within us – think of that, unlimited power within our own bodies, minds, spirits. We need only use the key He gave us to unlock all that Power: Believe, act on that belief and stand in awe at the results!

For God’s promises come true only when they are perceived and accepted with praise and thanksgiving. God’s promises: we get excited at some promises of men, think what we feel when we start to realize that we can have everything we want – it has been promised to us! Oh, no – we weren’t promised it would be in the form we picture – it will be in the form of our omnipotent God’s best as He responds to our actions. We have free will, so He cannot pre-package the wonderful gifts He has to offer; He must wait to hear from his believer to know what gift to send, then note the response to the gift, to know what other gifts to send. He wants us to have the desires He has created in us fulfilled but only as wonderful gifts for which we have asked, not as arbitrary imposition on us of whatever He decides to send. He wants the joy of two-way communication and a relationship of love and trust and interaction.

A New Name

So a vital relationship with Christ can transform anyone

Meditation Thought: “To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by his power,  so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:11-12)

In these few words, Paul describes the interchange and the reliability upon one another that constitute the relationship of God with His faithful people.

God does call upon us to do His work – and when we respond by faith, resolve and our efforts, He releases His power to aid us. What is difficult is the initiating of our own movement once we recognize we should make it.

Prayer is a great help in this, as is the trust that God will work good for us when we serve Him faithfully. Despite the troubles that have come to Christians, and do come to Christians, the joy of the Lord penetrates and uplifts – and is encouragement to the participants and to those who observe.

Paul also makes a point that as we glorify Christ, He glorifies us: that must be the key factor that gives strength and courage beyond the ordinary. I hadn’t thought about my being glorified in Christ – but to know of the changes that took place in the people who knew Christ, and believed Him, and the ones who have come to know Him through faith after His death and resurrection, does verify this statement. To know Christ and to follow Him is to change the personality – to enhance the God-reflective qualities of each facet, and to eliminate, or at least subdue the qualities that are selfish, unloving, uncaring, and cruel.

Several men were so changed that even the names were changed: Simon became Peter and Saul became Paul. Certainly if one met Simon when he was denying Christ, and fearful for his life, it would be difficult to recognize him as Peter the Rock, the brave, enthusiastic supporter of Christ after Christ’s death. And to know Saul the determined persecutor of those who followed Christ’s teachings, would make it difficult to reconcile Paul, – who went through all kinds of trials to preach Christ as Savior and to teach His Way, with the former Saul.

So a vital relationship with Christ can transform anyone: this is Christ “glorifying” us. We are made more recognizable as God’s children – and more important to others, we are ministers of Christ – healers, helpers, encouragers, strengtheners. We do not do these works for our own glory. Yet the power is a satisfaction to us as we perceive the good changes taking place. And we do experience joy as the love of Christ penetrates our hearts; it is in this way that He glorifies us. As we serve Him, He serves us, Christ ministers to the world – through us. And Christ ministers to us through the world (by the power of the Holy Spirit working in circumstances), as well as through others in whom His love and power flow – and overflow.

To realize this fact is to serve as the basis for a Simon becoming a Peter and a Saul becoming a Paul: to the glory of Jesus, to the glory of Peter and Paul and to the betterment of the world.

Burden Transformed

Our energies can be concentrated on the present not the past, on God’s will for us, and not our will for another, and upon the full, true significance of life, not a superficial misconception.

Meditation Thought: “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)

This does not refer to physical labor so much as the labor we force upon ourselves due to our misunderstanding of what the Father desires from us. We “load ourselves down” with guilt – Jesus will remove the burden, if we believe He came to do so.

We fret under doubt about our decisions and worthiness. Jesus lifts these from us as we perceive ourselves as He perceives us – as children of a loving Father.

God has provided a world of beauty, of order – yet of unfolding mystery – for us to discover and enjoy.

Through Christ we learn to appreciate all that is good, to forgive what is bad, when forgiveness is sought, and thus relieve much of the strain of living. Our energies can be concentrated on the present not the past, on God’s will for us, and not our will for another, and upon the full, true significance of life, not a superficial misconception.

Key to Change

We must recognize the importance of our reaching to Him – it is the key to completing the circuit. That’s a lot of responsibility – but it is also the means to change the world, let alone change ourselves!

Just as there is no flow of electricity (no power) unless there is a “return” flow, our relationship with God must be one of a reaching out by Him and a reaching back by us or there is not a true “relationship”, at least one with true power, or complete power. Therefore, we must recognize the importance of our reaching to Him – it is the key to completing the circuit. That’s a lot of responsibility – but it is also the means to change the world, let alone change ourselves!

 

Bear Fruit: Thirty-fold, Sixty-fold, a Hundred-fold

If you will keep a picture in your mind of  a tiny seed bursting into a plant which produces abundantly, it will enable you to do what you ought to do even when your emotions rebel.

“To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, but for those outside everything is in parables… the sower sows the word… and… the [seeds] that were sown on the good soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and bear fruit, thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.” (Mark 4:11,14,20)

The Word has fallen on good ground in your will, your mind and your heart, yet it needs more than good ground. It needs that ground to be tilled (disturbed so it will not form a restrictive hardened crust of self-will to bind the seed of the Word); it needs the nutrients to be released into its nature (the thoughts of your mind concentrated on the Truth, your determination to find the Way, your life based upon the examples of Jesus’ Life).

It needs the water of the Holy Spirit released through your spirit believing that He dwells within you and does direct you, and your acting upon the prompting.

It needs the sunshine of the Son’s life once again manifested upon the earth through all of your faculties.

Yes – all of these are required for the accomplishment of the seed producing thirty-fold, sixty-fold and a hundred-fold.

If you will keep a picture in your mind of  a tiny seed bursting into a plant which produces abundantly, it will enable you to do what you ought to do even when your emotions rebel. It will facilitate your mind to think clearly, remember accurately and produce creatively. It will prompt you to speak words of love – even if words not loving intrude your mind for a brief moment, for they will be ignored and replaced by words which will heal and encourage growth of the word in another.

The Word is a symbol
Representing Truth.
To base your life –
And your growth –
Upon the Word
Is to release
The harvest which
Is inherent within you
As the seed of Word
Unites with the ground
of your life.