Saturday, July 24, 2010
A quick update on the family... For some reason, the fever virus the kids had decided to make a second round! We also shared it with our cousins in Greenville (sorry guys:). Cooper accidentally scratched Judah's cornea which had to be treated and Linen has a double ear infection. It really is comical at this point! I am very thankful for my sweet family and great friends who have helped me stay sane while Aaron is away! He has had a wonderful time on his journey through Italy and England but will return soon! We are all looking forward to that!
So this post is not about Nehemiah but i wanted to share a special prayer with you. A few months ago, several members of the worship/production team at Grace came over to our house. We wanted to have a night to reconnect and share the things the Lord had put on our hearts. A few minutes before everyone came over, i was praying about the night and asked the Lord what He wanted me to pray for this group. Immediately i felt like the Lord was telling me to pick up a pen and start writing ( when i say i felt like the Lord told me this, i mean i had this thought and i haven't had this thought before when asking the Lord how to pray, so i assumed it was a thought from the Holy Spirit). I waited for a minute and then again it just seemed clear that i should step out in faith and pick up a pen and see what happened. So, immediately thoughts started coming to my mind as i wrote. It was such a fun experience. By the time i was close to the last sentence the doorbell rang and the first guest arrived. As we were worshipping that night i felt lead to read this prayer over the group. This made me very nervous since i hadn't even had time to read over it or share it with Aaron. However, you know when you really feel prompted to do something, its like if you don't you will just be sick at your stomach :0 So, i took a leap of faith and read it out loud over the group. It seemed to be the perfect prayer for this time. Since then, i have read it many times and shared it with a number of people. I hope that you are able to read these words as if the Father is reading them to you! Enjoy! I will try and post Nehemiah 2 in the next few day!
I am the way the truth and the life no one comes to the Father except by me. Do you know me? Then come and dine with me. I delight in you, I know all of your ways! I am overwhelmed by you, my child, my beloved! You are my joy! My joy is your strength. Do you believe this? Then be more joyful! Practice laughing louder and harder. You are complete in me. You have everything you need when you rest in me. Dine with me, spend time with me. Turn off your TV, turn down your radio. I promise I am the best date you could ever imagine, my beloved, my child. You are My joy! My joy! My joy! I delight in you and your delight should be in me and My word. I have so many secrets to share with you and you alone. You have a purpose, a destiny that belongs to no other. I have a purpose and a plan just for you and the time is now. Awake, awake my daughter, my son. Do not sleep these last days away. Go for it, you can do the things which i've put in your heart. Yes, they are from me - your dreams, your goals- the time is now! Don't wait, don't waste another minute. Reach out, love well, serve more, forgive quicker. I have given you everything you need, the Kingdom is at hand. Don't question or doubt just remain faithful. Turn your face to me, look at me- focus- the time is now! Your part is important, you have kingdom purpose and kingdom impact. People are waiting on you- go for it! Do it! Don't hold back. I can handle it, I will catch you, I will go before you, I support you, it doesn't matter how silly you may look or what your parents or your boss say- come on! I am your biggest fan- trust me! I created you, I formed all of your parts! I know you better than any other. I love you, my child. I love YOU, yes you. I know your imperfections but you were created in my image. I have gone before you. i have prepared the way, now its your turn to step out and trust me. Come dine with me my daughter, my son, my love. I'm waiting!
Friday, July 16, 2010
I can't believe its taken so long to get this third blog posted! We have been traveling with Aaron and life has been a bit crazy! The boys have all passed around a fever virus so most of my time the past few days has been nursing everyone back to health. So, i thought i had already posted my thoughts on the end of chapter one, but i had not so i hope these last verses encourage you. I am really excited about chapter 2 and look forward to sharing my thoughts on that in a few days! Thank you again for your encouragement! I do pray that you receive insight and encouragement as you read this today!
Previously, in Nehemiah 1:1-6, we looked at how Nehemiah wept and fasted and mourned for days but then he turned to the Lord with praise and adoration. We looked at how we need to be broken for the things/people that concern the Father! We also need to confess our sins and speak Truth back to the Father so the enemy does not get a strong hold in our lives. Today lets finish looking at chapter one.
7 We have acted very wickedly toward you. We have not obeyed the commands, decrees and laws you gave your servant Moses.8 "Remember the instruction you gave your servant Moses, saying, 'If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the nations, 9 but if you return to me and obey my commands, then even if your exiled people are at the farthest horizon, I will gather them from there and bring them to the place I have chosen as a dwelling for my Name.'
Nehemiah refers to the commands, decrees, and laws that were given to Moses. Obviously, he knows the words that the Lord had previously spoken. We have The Bible, the precious word of God, that we have free access to, but how much time do we spend reading it and meditating on it? Do you know the Word? What treasures are hidden in His word that He wants you to discover? How can you consistently spend time reading scripture and listening to the Holy Spirit?
Holy Spirit guide us today in your Word. Give us eyes to see and ears to hear Your Truth and insight for us today.
11"O Lord, I beseech You, may Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant and the prayer of Your servants who delight to revere Your name, and make Your servant successful today and grant him compassion before this man " Now I was the cupbearer to the king.
I love that Nehemiah is bold in his prayers. When he says, "i beseech You" he is asking urgently and fervently. The dictionary says to beseech also means to implore or entreat. Can't you hear him crying out to the Father with such passion and purity!
This is the second time in this chapter he says, “may your ear be attentive”. He is saying, Listen! Listen! He is just making sure Holy Spirit is hearing his prayers. I think this delights the Lord when we come before him with this longing and urgency.
He then says, “make your servant successful today and grant him compassion” This is another bold prayer that we should pray. I think early in my relationship with Jesus i felt too guilty to pray like this because i believed it was selfish. Have you felt that way before? However, the more i understand the Father's heart and his desire to bless his children this prayer becomes easier to pray. I want to bless my children, don't you? Read Matthew 7:11 "If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him!"
Lord give us compassion and success today! Help us to be attentive to your voice and your guidance! Give us courage to pray bold prayers today!
1 Chronicles 4:10 Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, "Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain." And God granted his request.
Friday, July 2, 2010
Thank you for your sweet words of encouragement from my first blog post! I have so many things i want to share with you, but i am trying not to make my posts too long. Today i wanted to share a few thoughts from Nehemiah 1:5-6. I hope you are able to take time to read each verse and listen to the things the Holy Spirit wants to speak to you about. I would love to hear your comments too!!
Read Nehemiah 1 (www.biblegateway.com)
Then I said: "O LORD, God of heaven, the great and awesome God, who keeps his covenant of love with those who love him and obey his commands..."
In Nehemiah 1:4 we read about Nehemiah weeping and praying. Then here in verse 5, Nehemiah begins to worship and adore God and remind him of His character.
I think its important to look at how he came before the Lord. First in a posture of surrender and humility and sadness but he didn't stay there. He then moved into a place of worship and adoration.
Have you been stuck in a season of sadness? I don't think we are supposed to stay in that place long! Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal truth to you about the condition of your heart. Is there a lie you believe that is keeping you in this sad place? What is His Truth?
Take a minute to speak Truth back to the Lord. Even if you don't yet feel like it, praise Him for His characteristics. Look at Psalm 103 where David is telling his soul to praise the Lord. Speak these verses and eventually your feelings will follow!
Psalm 84:4 Blessed are those who dwell in your house; they are ever praising you.
Psalm 103 :1-4 Praise the LORD, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits- who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion,Isaiah 61 :10 I will rejoice greatly in the LORD, My soul will exult in my God; For He has clothed me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness, As a bridegroom decks himself with a garland And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
If you need to stop here and think through the previous questions please do!
6 let your ear be attentive and your eyes open to hear the prayer your servant is praying before you day and night for your servants, the people of Israel. I confess the sins we Israelites, including myself and my father's house, have committed against you.
After praising the Lord, Nehemiah begins to confess his sins and the sins of the people.
Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you to any areas in your heart and mind that you need to confess. Ask him to reveal sins in your community that need to be confessed to the Lord. Take a minute to listen and then *confess.
*CONFESS: Stating the Truth back to the Lord. (like when a police is trying to get a criminal to confess) It is not begging the Lord for forgiveness or saying i am sorry. Secrecy and shame are marks of the enemy on us, so when we confess we need to do it out loud so the enemy hears us. Don't just think it, say it! (Donna thank you for sharing this insight during listening prayer training)
Psalm 139:23 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts
Proverbs 28:13 He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy.