abound in love

As we start this new year, God has put it on my heart to pray scripture in the coming days. There will be a slight change to my format, but I hope you will join me in raising our voices in prayer.

“The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.” James 5:16 (NIV1984)

PRAY

Dear God, please help us gain wisdom and insight in how to pray for others through the gift of your word. Help us to desire to love one another and “all” just as Paul prays in this passage.

WRITE

READ 1 Thessalonians 3:11-13

“Now may our God and Father himself, and our Lord Jesus, direct our way to you, and may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, as we do for you, so that he may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints.”

  • While there are several components to Paul’s prayer, what is his petition about love?
  • Paul asks that we would abound in love for who?
  • For one another & for all. I think we do not often ask for God to increase our love – for each other – or for all. Take time now to write down several groups, people, leaders (church, family, co-workers) for whom you can ask for an increase in love for both you and for them. Write a prayer

GROW

  • Take time this week to pray for these people.

Dear Father God and our Lord Jesus Christ, direct our way to those whom you desire us to bless in your name. Please, may you increase our love for for one another so that we will abound in love for all. May we like Paul be an example of your love to the world as you establish our hearts in preparation for the coming of our Savior Jesus Christ! In Jesus Name … AMEN!

Photo by Rosie Fraser on Unsplash

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to pray

PRAY

Take time to pray and ask the Holy Spirit to guide you as you read, ponder and write.

Read Matthew 14:13-33

“And after he had dismissed the crowds,
he went up on the mountain by himself to pray.
When evening came, he was there alone…”
Matthew14:23

WRITE

In Matthew Chapter 14 you will find two very familiar stories. Jesus feeds the 5000 and Jesus walks on water. But it is the little bit wedged between these two magnificent miracles that I want to focus on today. The story begins with Jesus trying to get some time alone. But, the people seek Him out and when He sees them – as only Jesus could amidst his exhaustion –  He has compassion on them. He ministers to them, heals them, feeds them, pours Himself out for them, and then…

  • According to Matthew 14:23 what does Jesus do next?
  • What does this reveal about the most essential part of the day?
  • Does this make you rethink your attitudes amidst your exhaustion?
  • What can you do today to take action or re-prioritize your time?

GROW

Praying that the example of Jesus will impact your heart today. May we all seek relationship with our heavenly Father the way that Jesus did. May each of us crave the fellowship that only our mighty God can provide. Praying for you!

Be

background7pray

How to Act Like a True Christian – Digging Deep Into Romans 12:9-21

“Be constant in prayer.” 
Romans 12:12c

Ask the Spirit to guide you as you read God’s word for today. 

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  • I’m sure I do a few too many definitions here, but I have really been moved by the word “BE” in this part of the passage. One of the Merriam Webster definitions of be is, “the condition of a person or thing.” Write down what that definition means to you in this context.
  • Paraphrase Romans 12:12c  taking into consideration this definition.
  • It reminds me of Jesus instruction to abide in Him (John 15). We are to BE in a condition of constant communication with our Savior. How does that look to you in your life?
  • He is our way, our truth and our life. He is our guide. He is our life GPS. I know it’s cliché, instead of just  thinking “What would Jesus do?,”  we need to be asking Him – “Lord what do I do.”  And, it can be a simple as that. God is not telling us we need to live our lives in our living room praying…no He’s telling us to live our lives while constantly praying. Write a prayer now asking the Lord to abide with you and make you mindful in seeking Him constantly.

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Praying you feel the presence of the Risen Savior in your daily life as you seek to live in a condition of prayer, may you just BE in Him.