Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Pondering Prayer

Scriptures have been running through my brain today… I’m thinking and meditating, chewing, and debating with myself. Could you ponder these things with me as I attempt to organize the chaos of my thoughts?


It’s a simple word. It’s a simple thing; bringing our requests, our praises, our thoughts to the Great Listener.

But here’s what’s got me turned inside-out. I’m confounded and perplexed; awed and amazed.

Jesus Makes Intercession For Me. There it is.

Yes, He died and bore my sins. But even more, He lives! Not only does He live, he Lives to make intercession for me. For me. For you.

This morning I gained new perspective on “Praying in Jesus’ name.” I’ve been taught it’s more than a simple “In Jesus’ name, amen;” that it’s actually praying according to His character; praying as He would pray. And all of a sudden this means so much more because what I pray, He takes to the Father on my behalf. What I pray, He prays for me.

He is my mediator. He is the middleman doing the work I cannot. He’s my High Priest entering the Holy of Holies, bringing requests and supplications before Almighty-before a God so sacred and set apart none could stand in His presence and live. None is worthy, except the Lamb.

There’s a battle being fought before the throne. A war is waged at my expense as the enemy stands accusing me day and night. I can almost hear his snide remarks- She’s unfaithful. She’s a liar. She’s proud and unteachable. The Father hears the endless allegations, considering the charges as He’s drawn to a scent- a sweet smelling aroma. My mediator is interceding on my behalf; Jesus is reconciling and intervening as only He is able.

There you have it- My mind blowing impression of Heaven, prayer, and the work being done.

Will this change the way I pray? I HOPE SO! As I consider the enemy accusing my children, my friends, my unsaved loved ones, those I know are suffering- I realize our only hope is in prayer; my prayers being uttered by Jesus Himself before an Almighty God. A sweet smelling aroma in the heavenlies.

Take my prayers out of the equation and what’s left? Allegations of the accuser filling the ears of Almighty God.

Pray in Jesus’ name? Pray, sisters! Wage war! Because the works that He did you will do also; and greater works than these you will do, because He is before the throne. And whatever you ask in His name, that He will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in His name, HE WILL DO IT. (John 14:12-14)

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter! Do you think Jesus takes our very prayers to the throne and presence of God Himself? Does He utter our praises and requests for us?

No one can come to the Father except through Him.

Follow me on Facebook.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Cherished Yet Chastised

I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.

I’ve always read these words to mean that my Lord would cut me off; that He would reject and cast me out if He found me not “bearing fruit.” And maybe that’s exactly what the Word indicates, but if this be true I should have been rejected and cast out LONG AGO! Oh He is so patient and good.

How I would rather be pruned! That He would use those mighty hands to mold, mend, and create in me.

And so I’m reminded that I am His. I am chosen, holy, blameless, predestined, adopted, forgiven, saved, sealed, redeemed, and His purchased possession. {Eph 1}

Can I be so bold as to add CHERISHED to that list? Am I cherished by Him? And what does that even mean? To hold dear: feel or show affection for; to keep or cultivate with care and affection; to entertain or harbor in the mind deeply and resolutely.

Does He cherish me? Does He hold me dear? Does He cultivate me with care and affection? Does He entertain deep thoughts of me? It seems selfish to even think such a mighty God, such a worthy Lamb would bother with me, the one who should be taken away and cast off.

But maybe it’s not me He’s taking away. Maybe it’s those parts of me that need taken, stripped, cast out; those parts that keep me from bearing the fruit that glorifies Him. And maybe sometimes I have a difficult time deciphering between the taking away and the pruning because maybe sometimes they feel the same. And maybe sometimes they are happening cohesively? He’s taking away over here and He’s pruning over there…. They both entail cutting and pain.

So I will not grow weary in doing good and I will wait patiently as He works through the spring, summer, and then the harvest. Because that first spring bud is exciting and offers hope. But the drought of summer discourages and brings the need for refreshment. Don’t grown weary, cherished one. Don’t lose faith waiting on the harvest.  And don’t get discouraged with the cutting. Because whom He loves He chastens. It is for the furthering of the gospel in and through you.

By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.

Lisa-Jo offers the challenge week after week: take a measly five minutes and write. No over thinking, no backtracking, no ‘wait, that’s not spiritual enough, and I can’t share that in cyber city’ mentality. Only writing. Writing for five minutes and risking the outcome. This week’s prompt- CHERISHED (Confession- I took more than 5 minutes and I over-thought, backtracked, and second guessed. I even used my thesaurus)

Follow me on Facebook.