What is Your Value?

How do you determine your value? Do you determine it by how others treat you? Do you determine it by what others say to you or about you?

Maybe you determine your value by your regretful past. Or maybe by how you look, what you do, or what you own.

A long time ago I heard a statement that has stuck with me all of these years. I think I may have heard while watching Antique Road Show.

The statement is, “The value of an item is determined by what someone is willing to pay for it.”

Now, let me tell you how valuable you are.

You are so valuable that the creator of heaven, earth, and all living things gave His one and only Son, whom He loves, to die for you. In dying for you Jesus paid the price to redeem you from a life of slavery to sin and to give you eternal life with Him [Romans 6:23].

That may sound cliche to you but when you consider how much Jesus excruciatingly suffered in order to pay that price to set you free and give you eternal life, you will realize that you are priceless to God.

Isaiah 53:3-10

He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

Surely he took our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds, we are healed.

We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way, and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.

Yet who of his generation protested? For he was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgression of the people, he was punished. He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in his mouth.

Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the Lord makes his life an offering for sin, he will see his offspring and prolong his days and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.

I know those were a lot of scriptures but read them again. Slowly this time. Allow them to soak into your heart and mind.

When you get a full grasp of what Jesus went through for you; you will realize that the only thing that makes you valuable is what God through Jesus was willing to pay for you.

They gave everything for you. You are priceless!

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

If You Love Me

My husband and I like to take our dog Autumn for walks on our property. We take the leash along just in case she refuses to obey.

If we’re not careful, she’ll wander off and return smelling like the decaying carcass of the animal she rolled around in. Why on earth do dogs do this? Baffling and gross!

When my husband and Autumn returned from a recent walk, he was happy to report that she was very obedient. Actually, he was amazed by her obedience. Needless to say, he made sure Autumn knew he was very pleased with her.

You see, Autumn is usually a fearful, stubborn, rebellious dog (sounds a lot like me at times). So, for one of us to say that she was obedient for an entire 15-acre walk is really saying something.

Autumn’s act of obedience reminds me of scripture. John 14:15 “If you love me, keep my commands.”

We don’t have to exhaustingly work hard at trying to obey God in order to prove our love for Him. The more we fall in love with the Lord, obedience to Him will come more naturally. We’ll actually desire to be pleasing to Him.

Psalm 119:35 Direct me in the path of your commands, for there I find delight.

The more time Autumn spends with my husband, the more she gets to know him and trust him. The more she knows him and trusts him, her love for him grows. Therefore, her obedience to him increases.

It’s the same with God. The more time we spend with Him in prayer, bible study, and experiencing life with Him, the better we will know Him. The better we know Him, the more we will trust Him and what He says.

The more we realize we can trust God and His Word, the deeper and deeper in love we will fall with Him. Resulting in more obedience.

What is the result of more obedience? A more pleasant journey.

Psalm 119:1-2 Blessed are those whose ways are blameless, who walk according to the law of the Lord. Blessed are those who keep his statutes and seek him with all their hearts.

What is the reward of obedience?

Psalm 91:14-16 “Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call on me, and I will answer him, I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. With a long life, I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.”

Just as my husband made it clear to Autumn that she had done a great job on their walk and that he was very pleased with her obedience, so also the Lord will express His delight in our obedience.

Matthew 25:23 His master replied, “Well done, good and faithful servant! Come and share your master’s happiness!”

I don’t know about you but that’s what I’m looking forward to hearing the Lord say to me at the end of my walk.

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Journey/Week 11

My second week of breast cancer radiation treatment is complete. I am officially halfway finished with my treatments. Yay! High-five!

I’ve gone from getting tired during the first two weeks of treatment to a perpetual state of being tired going into the third week. Ugh!

I don’t have the words to describe this whole new level of tiredness. If I’ve ever been this tired in my life it was probably during my pregnancy days. I do remember sleeping a lot during pregnancy. I slept so much my husband nicknamed me RIP haha.

The advice of professionals and those who have blazed this trail before me are to listen to my body and rest when it tells me to rest. That’s what I have been doing a lot of these days; resting.

God is all for resting. He even included it in the 10 commandments [Exodus 20:8-10]. It’s in the same list with do not murder, do not lie, do not commit adultery; so it must be pretty important.

The definition for rest is freedom from activity or labor, a state of motionlessness or inactivity, peace of mind or spirit, free of anxiety [Merriam-Webster Dictionary App].

We are a three-part being; spirit, soul, and body. Not only do our bodies need rest but so do our souls and spirits.

The same advice given to me about resting my body pertains to resting our spirits and souls (mind, will, and emotions) as well; “listen to them and rest when they tell you to rest.”

A true sign of our souls needing rest is worry and anxiety. If you have been following this blog you know that due to my confusion over breast cancer treatment options and the fear of their side effects, my soul was in desperate need of rest.

When we are struggling to make things happen our way; trying to control things that are out of our control, our souls will grow weary and tired. We can become emotionally and mentally exhausted.

Once we realize that only God is in control of all things and that He is working all things out for the best, in His way and in His timing, we can be at rest; at peace.

Trusting God is the most effective way to rest and be at peace in our mind, will, and emotions; our soul.

Philippians 4:6-7 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

How can we know when our spirits need rest? Our spirits are restless when they are searching for peace. A spirit apart from God will never find peace. As a matter of fact, a spirit apart from God is at enmity with God; it is under God’s wrath.

Romans 2:5,8 But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when His righteous judgment will be revealed. To those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger.

Jesus is the truth that is rejected that causes our spirits to be restless and without peace.

John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

Searching for a way to God, eternal life, and peace other than through Christ is exhausting and pointless. There is no other way!

Is your body tired? Then listen to it and give it what it needs; rest. Take a break!

Is your soul tired? Are you worried about things you have no control over? Don’t ruin today worrying about something that may or may not happen tomorrow or by worrying about things out of your control. Do your best and trust God with the rest; literally!

Is your spirit tired due to searching for peace? Are you tired of trying to earn your way to heaven? Are you weary from trying out every religion or mystical idea known to mankind only to find yourself empty and still without peace? Jesus is the only way to God, eternal life, and true everlasting peace.

John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

~Patrice Maguire

Prayer for salvation: Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Journey/Week 9

As of right now, starting this blog, all I know about breast cancer treatment is what I read or what other people that have “been there done that” tell me.

I’ve read books on traditional breast cancer treatment and books on alternative breast cancer treatment. I’ve listened to other people’s experiences with breast cancer. I’ve listened to what people think I should do and what they would do if they were in my shoes. I can wrap all of that up into one word, confusion.

At the end of last week, I was so confused that I nearly canceled my radiation treatments. The confusion led to the fear that I was making a mistake. Fear of making a mistake led to anxiety and panic. At that point, all of my peace was gone.

Confusion, fear, and anxiety are not God’s attributes. God is not in the midst of confusion and all that confusion brings.

I had to get back to peace; back to where God is. He hadn’t gone anywhere. I had wandered off away from Him.

So, what did I do? First I realized what was happening. I realized that the state I was in was not where I wanted to be or needed to be. I realized my peace was gone and I needed to get it back.

The first step to solving any problem is realizing you have a problem. Step one was complete; I realized I had a problem.

Next, I had to retrace my steps to discover where I lost my peace. This is how we find anything we lose, right? I retraced my steps all the way back to all of the confusing, contradicting information.

I’m all for knowledge, learning, and science but when it puts you into a state of confusion, it’s time to take a break.

Next, I went to the one true source of peace, God. I just got alone with Him in a quiet place and asked Him to help me. And He did.

He helped me by reminding me of who He is. Not just who He is in general but who He is to me. He reminded me of all the things He has been revealing to me during this difficult time about His love for me and that He is my shelter and my shield of protection.

1 John 4:18a There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear.

Psalm 91:1 Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.

Psalm 18:2 The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

Once I shut out every voice except God’s voice, my peace returned.

Information, knowledge, and science are necessary and useful. However, it is most important to know who God is and what He is capable of.

God is in control and knows what’s best for us. No matter what doctors, professionals, or anyone else says; God is the final authority in every situation. And that alone gives me great peace!

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:7-8 Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil. This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.

Have you lost your peace? Do you want it back? Retrace your steps to find out where you lost it.

Maybe you’re like me, losing your peace over confusing, contradicting voices. Maybe fear of making a mistake or fear of the consequences of making a mistake have caused you to lose your peace. The loss of peace could even be due to a job, health, or family crisis.

Our peace can be lost easily and quickly when we wander away from God.

Only the Lord can give us peace in the midst of every difficult situation. Will you go to Him with your confusion, fear, and anxiety? Will you ask Him to help you? Will you go to His word and ask Him to reveal to you who He is and what He is capable of.

Philippians 4:6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your request to God.

Even when things don’t seem to be working out the way we would like them to, it’s comforting to know that God is in control, He knows what’s best, and He always has the last word. Stay close to Him; that’s where true peace is.

Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

~Patrice Maguire

Prayer for salvation: Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Trees are not Worried

This past Saturday was the first day of Fall. I get excited about Fall. I love the colors, the smells, and the cooler temperatures. Actually, I just love everything about it. Living in Louisiana, it’s nice to get a little break from the heat. Don’t get me wrong, I love the heat but we all need a change every now and then.

On that day, being excited about Fall, I decided to search for some Fall quotes. I found the usual ones about “the beauty in death” and “the beauty in change.” Then, in the large pile of Fall quotes, I found one unique quote that was more beautiful than the rest.

Maybe you’ve read it or heard it before but I hadn’t. “All the trees are losing their leaves, and not one of them is worried.” Isn’t it great! This quote really gets you thinking right! Well, it did me.

The trees are losing their leaves and they are not worried. Why are they not worried? Because they know that, at an appointed time, their leaves will return. New life will come! They have no control over the loss of their leaves.

There are many circumstances that occur causing the trees to lose their leaves. But they aren’t worried because they know that the God who made them will take care of them and provide for their every need. They aren’t worried they are just trusting.

Are there things in your life that you’ve lost? Maybe it’s your health or your wealth. Maybe you’ve lost a loved one to a disease or an accident. Maybe your spouse or someone you love very much has left you. Or maybe you’ve lost your job or your home.

It could be anything. These things may all be due to circumstances that are out of your control. Whatever the situation, you can know that the God who made you will take care of you and will provide for your every need.

Life is painful sometimes and doesn’t always seem fair but there is a God who sees you and knows what you are going through and He cares about you very much.

There is a man in the Bible that lost everything. His name was Job. He lost livestock, his children, employees, his health and his wealth. Even his friends and his wife turned against him.

In all of his pain and suffering, he never blamed God. He didn’t worry about how he was going to get everything and everyone he had lost back. He only trusted the One who created him and the One who would take care of Him and provide for all of his needs.

And just like the trees get their leaves back and bud forth new life in due season so did Job. God gave him back all that he had lost and more.

I just want to encourage you to be like those trees that are losing all of their leaves right now. They aren’t worried because they know that things will get better. They have to go through the winter but come spring there will be new life to be enjoyed.

The same is true for you. You may have to go through a rough season but be assured that God is working on your behalf and He is making all things new.

Revelation 21:5 He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!

You may not see it now but just you wait. Spring is coming!

Matthew 6:25,28-32  “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will He not much more clothe you-you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.”

~Patrice Maguire

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

True Love

Recently, in a conversation with someone who was going through a breakup, the person said to me, “I love her because she loved me. I know that’s not easy to do.” But obviously people have their limits on how much they are willing to tolerate, and understandably so. This conversation really got me thinking about true love.

I am so thankful for a God that fully knows me and completely and perfectly loves me anyway. The statement the person made reminded me of 1John 4:19 that says We love because He first loved us. We love Him because He loves us. We love others because He loves us.

Think of all the things you’ve ever done, said or thought. God knows all of them. Do you think God has limits on how much He is willing to tolerate from you before He takes His love away from you? No! God knows everything about you and still loves and accepts you, warts and all. In fact, He will never love you any more or less than He does right this minute.

Psalm 118:2 His love endures forever.

Do you think it’s easy for God to love you? Yes, it is! Why? Because He is love.

1John 4:8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.

Those we love and those who say they love us will disappoint us or let us down eventually. They are human; they can’t help it at times. They can only love us as much as they are humanly capable of loving us. They aren’t perfect. But God is.

2Samuel 22:31 As for God, His way is perfect: The Lord’s word is flawless; He shields all who take refuge in Him.

1Corinthians 13:4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

Have you ever met anyone who can say that they can do all of these things all of the time? Only God can! And He does!

So don’t put all of your hopes for true love on people. The love of people will inevitably let you down. But God’s love will never let you down. He loved us before we were lovable. His love has no limits. He tolerates the good the bad and the ugly in us and His love for us never changes. His love stays complete and perfect. It’s true love!

~Patrice Maguire

 

Destructive Worms

Yesterday afternoon I went outside to do a few things. While I was on the back patio looking at my plants, I noticed that my rose bush’s leaves were nearly all gone. This was very confusing to me since it looked fine just a couple of days ago. As I looked closer and investigated I figured out what had happened. I found these worms that looked just like the leaves, eating the leaves. I picked them off one at a time and threw them into a trash bag and into the trashcan. I was so amazed by their ability to blend in with the rose bush and deceive me so well. Tricky little devils! I also noticed little black dots all around my rose bush on the patio. I later realized it was worm poop. Yuck! Apparently, they are also messy little devils.

This morning, as I was journaling about the worm discovery, the Lord began to speak to me about the worms that we might have in our own lives. One minute we may think all is well but unknown to us there is destruction going on. Just as the worms in my rose bush disguised themselves as part of the bush so they wouldn’t be seen, so it is in our lives.

What are some things in our lives that we can’t see that are destroying us? Could it be food, or relationships or negative thoughts? Maybe it’s a bad attitude or unforgiveness. Maybe it’s selfishness, greed or lust. It could be anything that we think is harmless. And as a result just as the worms left a mess of poop all around my rose bush we are left with a mess of poop in our own lives.

So what can we do about it? Well, first we have to realize we have a problem. Once we see the destruction and the poop mess that it leaves then we have to find the culprit. We have to examine our lives. What is hidden in our lives that looks like it belongs there but is actually destroying us and leaving a mess?

The way I find life-destroying worms in my own life is by asking the Lord to reveal them to me. The ways He uses to reveal them to me is through His Word, the conviction of the Holy Spirit or maybe through an honest godly friend. One of the greatest advantages of reading and studying God’s word is we can know Him and His character. So, when a worm (anything contrary to God and His character) sneaks into our lives we’ll recognize it more easily and more quickly.

Once we find the culprit, the next step is to do as I did with the leaf-eating worms, pick them off one by one and get rid of them. How do we do that in our lives? We deal with each issue as the Lord shows it to us. We pray and ask the Lord to help us to get rid of the destructive behavior through the power of His Holy Spirit. We can’t do it in our own strength. Will power will only get us so far. We need God’s grace! We need the power of His Spirit to do in us what we can’t do on our own. That’s grace!

The secret to keeping the worms out of our lives, once we discover them and do away with them/get victory over them, is by staying in God’s word and staying in prayer. Be watchful! Don’t think that just because you got rid of them once that they won’t be back. It may not be the same worms but there will be new ones. Luke 21:36 “Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”

Then what? Watch your life flourish. You will grow new leaves and produce healthy beautiful roses. Isn’t that the goal? We want to bear a lot of fruit. Jesus said in John 15:2 He (God) cuts off every branch in Me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit He prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.

So let’s examine our lives and find the destructive behaviors that are making a mess in our lives. Let’s ask the Lord to help us change and to clean up our mess. Then let’s bear beautiful roses for all the world to see and enjoy. And when the people around us are enjoying the beauty in our lives let’s tell them about God, our Gardener, and how He helped us to get rid of the destructive worms in our lives. Let’s tell them about how He cleaned up the mess that those worms made and how He wants to do the same for them. Don’t keep your gardening secrets to yourself. Share the good news!

~Patrice Maguire

 

 

Seemingly Impossible Situations

I have a friend who is battling cancer. She has been fighting this disease for over a year. Since she has started treatment she has had one good report after another about cancer decreasing in her body. We have been praising God and rejoicing with her all along the way. When she first started this fight against cancer, the Lord gave her a scripture.

Isaiah 41:10-13 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. All who rage against you (in this case cancer) will surely be ashamed and disgraced; those who oppose you (cancer) will be as nothing and perish. Though you search for your enemies (cancer), you will not find them. Those who wage war against you (cancer) will be as nothing at all. For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, do not fear; I will help you.

Today she received a different report from her doctors following her latest CT scan. The scan showed that the disease has increased. She is disappointed but not distracted from the word that God gave her in the beginning. She is praising God that she is more than a conqueror through Christ who strengthens her (Romans 8:37). And she is praising the Lord because she knows that the battle is not her’s but it is God’s (2Chronicles 20:15). I don’t know about you but I am encouraged by her faith.

What are you battling today? Is it a health issue? Is it an addiction? Is it a temptation? Or are you battling discouragement and disappointment? Maybe the battle isn’t yours. Maybe you are standing in the gap for a family member or a friend who is struggling in life and doesn’t know what to do. Be encouraged today! God has a word for you.

There have been several instances in my life where I have faced seemingly impossible situations. The Lord always gives me His word to strengthen and encourage me. And it’s always specific to my situation. He will do the same for you. When you seek Him you will find Him. Matthew 7:7.”Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”

The scripture I sent to my friend this morning was Exodus 14:13-15. It is a scripture that the Lord has given me in several situations. Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to Me? Tell the Israelites to move on.”

The Israelites were in a seemingly impossible situation; Pharaoh and his army were coming after them on one side and the Sea was on the other side. They were literally between a rock and a hard place. They had no place to go? There seemed to be no hope. But God! God is the God of the impossible. When all hope seems lost and your enemies are closing in on you that is a recipe for a miracle. Ephesians 3:20 says that God is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine. Now that’s my God and that’s your God!

So be encouraged today and don’t give up! Be bold and courageous! Seek God! Seek His word for your situation. Believe His word for your situation. Even when things seem hopeless, keep believing. God is fighting your battles!

~Patrice Maguire

 

 

Don’t Give Up Hope

Have you ever believed beyond a shadow of a doubt that the Lord told you to do something? And that your obedience to Him would lead to a blessing? You believed it so much that you actually stepped out and did it. You may have not even know where the faith came from to do it but you had it and you used it. You said to yourself “If God told me to do it then He’s going to show me how to do it and He’s going to make everything work out.” Right? Then you come up with all of these preconceived ideas of how it’s all going to play out. Mistake number one! I know because I’ve been there and done that plenty of times. Then when things don’t go as you imagined they would or should you get discouraged and start to lose hope. Mistake number two!

I’m reminded of the story of Abraham. First God tells Abraham to leave his family and everything he knows to go to a land that He would show him. Then He told Abraham He would make him a great nation, bless him, make his name great and that he would be a blessing to all the people of the earth. God didn’t tell him where he was going. He didn’t tell him how he was going to become a great nation or how he would be a blessing to all the earth. There were no details. Abraham did as God told him to do. He took one day at a time and followed as God led him.

I wonder if, like us, Abraham had his own preconceived ideas of how all that God told him was going to play out? I suspect he did (Genesis 12-21). If Abraham had not wondered how God was going to make him a great nation then there would have been no Ishmael. Abraham and Sarah were getting discouraged and losing hope. So they took matters into their own hands. God was taking too long! They wanted to help God keep His promise. As if God needs our help. But isn’t that what we do? We start to get impatient with God so we start to question things and try to make sense of things. After all, we have to be logical. We think things like “Well maybe God meant this or maybe God wants me to do that.” We just end up making a mess of things.

Isaac was the promise from God. Isaac was how Abraham was going to be a great nation. The promise of Isaac came over twenty-five years after the promise was made. Abraham was one hundred years old when his son of promise was born. Sarah was past childbearing age. God taught Abraham a lot of lessons in those twenty-five years. God waited until He would get all of the glory and until Abraham was ready before He fulfilled the promise He had made to him.

Maybe things aren’t going as you thought they would. Maybe you are getting impatient with God. Maybe you are thinking about taking things into your own hands and helping God out. Maybe God is working things out in you and making you ready for the promise. Maybe God is waiting to fulfill His promise to you when He knows that no one else will get the glory but Him.

Don’t give up hope! God always keeps His promises (Psalm 108:4 For great is your love, higher than the heavens; Your faithfulness reaches to the skies.) His thoughts are not our thoughts and His ways are not our ways (Isaiah 55:8). Take one day at a time and follow God. He will show you the way and He will fulfill His promise to you.

~Patrice Maguire

 

 

 

Prayer

And it came to pass in those days, that He went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God (Luke 6:12). 

One question that comes to mind when we ponder the prayer life of Jesus is why He prayed at all. To put it another way, why does God need to pray to God? This is indeed a challenging question, and the Scriptures do not offer any explanation as to why Jesus prayed. They simply tell us that He did; so we are left to speculate on something like this.

Let’s consider some plausible explanations: 

First, because He is the Son of God, He wanted to maintain a very close relationship with His Father. Notice that He refers to the Father in the prayers that are recorded in the Bible. Examples: Our Father, which art in heaven (Matthew 6:9); and father, the hour has come; glorify Thy Son… (John 17:1).

Second,  in order to be the effective Teacher on prayer, He needed to pray in the presence of His disciples. When He was about to feed the 5,000 men, He offered a prayer of thanksgiving in the presence of all the people and the disciples (John 6:11); and at the Last Supper, He took the cup, and gave thanks (Luke 22:17; see also Luke 22:19). In His Sermon on the Mount He taught that we should pray without hypocrisy (Matthew 6:5), pray privately (Matthew 6:6a), realize the Father rewards prayer (Matthew 6:6b), avoid empty praying (Matthew 6:7), recognize that the Father knows our need even before we ask (Matthew 6:8), pray directly to the Father (Matthew 6:9a), recognize God’s holiness when we pray (Matthew 6:9b), recognize God’s sovereignty when we pray (Matthew 6:10), pray for our basic needs (Matthew 6:11), pray for forgiveness and be willing to forgive others (Matthew 6:12),pray for deliverance from Satan and His attacks (Matthew 6:13a), and pray constantly with an expectation that God will answer (Matthew 7:7-8). 

Here are some other basic facts about the prayer life of our Savior:

He often prayed alone (Matthew 14:22-23; Mark 6:46; Luke 9:18). 

He prayed for children (Matthew 19:13).

He often prayed early in the morning (Mark 1:35).

Sometimes He prayed all night (Luke 6:12).

He prayed, knowing the Father heard Him (John 11:41-42).

He considered His Temple a house of prayer (Matthew 21:13).

May we as God’s people learn to pray as He did! And He spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not faint (Luke 18:1).

Keep on praying to God on high,

Keep on praying, He hears your cry!

God will answer the sincere heart;

Keep on praying! He will do His part!

Keep on praying all through the strife;

Prayer will purchase a crown of life;

Heav’n is ringing with songs above,

Hallelujah for a Savior’s love!

For Jesus hears you,

He’s listening to your plea,

So keep on praying,

And He will answer thee! 

Keep on Praying

Frederick W. Vandersloot

These thoughts from a higher perspective were presented by John Rataczak, Ph.D.

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