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1514

December 31, 2013

Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013!

HIS WORD for Today- The Seventh Day of Christmas:

2 Corinthians 5.16-19

“So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

It seems appropriate as we look for God’s leadership into the new year that we remember who we have become in the old year. We have become mightier men of God because we are less likely to look at the world and all its people, events and mindsets from a worldly point of view. That is, of course, what the multimedia approach thrives on (outside of the Christian media opportunities, of course, when they can divorce themselves from their own doctrinal leanings). The measure of the world’s point of view is based on subjective legalistic thinking. It creates the paradigm that best suits its own survival purposes and establishes that paradigm as the reasonable expectation. In other words, the world wants to define for us what we should think about it and give our approval to it. Sadly, we can use Miley Cyrus as the example of this type of thinking. In order to create distance from her “Hannah Montana” image she adopted a persona that is catastrophically on the opposite end of the spectrum. While her popularity in the world skyrocketed and the entertainment world applauded her exposure (she will be doing someone’s New Year’s eve program) and she has received approval for her decision (even Billy Ray just comments “that’s my little girl”) she will become another shooting star across the heavens only to burn out hoping to find the next level of enticement to “come and see.”

But, because we are mighty men of God, we will not view her from the worldly standard. Instead, we must see her and those struggling to make a place for themselves in the world from the kingdom perspective. Our ministry and life calling is defined by the word reconciliation. We do not condemn others according to the law by which we ourselves are deemed guilty “for we all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” We have tried to be our own flash in the pan at one point or another in the world. But, thanks be to God that the old has past away and the new has taken its place. That newness of life is in Christ and is, in fact, Christ Himself in us. We should look upon those who are struggling to exist in the world and to find their place in it as our ministry opportunities where prayer is our greatest and first effort. We should be interceding for them as our intervention effort to reconcile them to God. We do not try to reconcile our thoughts about them and justify their poor choices and leave them with “poor thing, they just can’t help themselves.” Instead, we should declare the righteousness of God over them and let His blessing of love, peace and hope rain down on them and anoint them with goodness. Remember the words of John the Elder who wrote concerning Christ, “For God so loved the world that He gave it His Only Begotten Son so that those who would believe that He is indeed the Christ of God would not perish in eternal death but have everlasting life. For this Christ did not come into the world to condemn the world but that the world through Him might be saved.” If this is our paradigm as mighty men then we have only the future to look forward to.

What shall we do in the new year? This year, I have been seeking God’s revelation under the banner of “Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013.” In the words of the Apostle Paul, “If we do not have love then we are no more than a banging gong or a clanging cymbal.” In other words, if we do not love ourselves, others and God, as God has loved us, then we draw attention only to ourselves and drive others away at the same time. Mighty men, we are to be drawing all eyes to Jesus Christ so that at His name every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that “Jesus Christ is Lord.” I do not know what banner I will be seeking revelation under for the coming year. The old is about to depart and the new is nearly here. Pray with me for God’s word and what He would have His mighty men doing, and not what we ourselves would choose to do, in the coming year.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those the blessing of our upcoming New Year- 2014
* For those who will and won’t be travelling this Christmas season that their time be safe and filled with the Holy Spirit
* For continued protection and provision for those facing terrible thunder and snow storms across the country
* For our government and budget to become balanced before the Lord; I pray for Jubilee!; and that our President withdraw the current healthcare plan in favor of one that God will provide as what is best for all His people.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and the open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede and plant the seed of faith, hope and love
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land” and the people of Switzerland
* My 57/57 challenge; purity of heart, mind, body and soul
* For deliverance from cancer in my brother; healing for Lisa’s body, mind and spirit as she prepares; healing for JoAnn, Debbie and Linda; for Mack to blessed in the direction he has chosen for his life and a trust in God to provide healing of body, mind and soul which leads him to full-time employment and discipline to keep his life a glory to God; for all the concerns lifted up in LG; for co-workers who are believing for deliverance for their daughter and complete healing for her unborn child; for the chains to be unbroken for my good friends Tom and Rosalee and for Tom’s recovery from a seizure; for Dr. Weaver’s release from recurring cancer; for deliverance from someone who wants to rule over me and is setting me up in their mind that I am someone they must rule over instead of collaborate with

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world)

* God is bringing complete healing and comfort to Lisa
* God is in control and still speaks into our chaos to make sense of our world
* God is manifesting healing in my family and providing wisdom for a challenging decision for each of us (all vocationally-centered) daily

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, thank You for reconciling us to Yourself through Jesus Christ our Lord and Your Son. You did not spare His life so that You could repair ours and make us new. We call out to You, “Your Will be done in the year to come- 2014.” AMEN.

1513

December 30, 2013

Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013!

HIS WORD for Today- The Sixth Day of Christmas:

Psalm 147.5

“Great is our Lord and mighty in power; His understanding has no limit.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

As we prepare on the New Year’s Eve eve, let us consider not what we can do for ourselves but what God will be doing through us in the coming year. Mighty men, let us not get caught up in the New Year’s resolution revolution again this year. The world, nor our lives, revolve around the end and beginning of each year. Instead, our lives should be revolving around the Son just as the earth revolves around the sun. We mark our time by the journey around the sun. It gives us the seasons dependent on where the earth is in relationship to the sun in that journey. But, we face our own seasons of life as well. Our success and productivity in those seasons does not depend on anything outside of us but what lies within. The Son of God ought to be burning brightly within us. Fueled by the most powerful force known to man, the Holy Spirit, Jesus lives in us and empowers us to live in the world successfully fulfilling God’s purpose for our lives.

As we think upon the upcoming year do not let your imagination be limited by what you perceive are the needs of your lives. God knows them already. He is preparing the answers to the questions that are pertinent and the resources to overcome them. As for the other questions, He is seeking to teach you how to release them into His care. We must learn to trust Him in all things at all times. We can never out think God nor exceed His marvelous imagination which created all the universe. Man is still in pursuit of understanding the universe. He is in constant debate with himself about how the universe and all its elements co-exist. He is still pursuing the first moment of creation, the moment when all that we know came into being. But, even that pursuit is still an exercise of our limited imagination. We consider that all things have a definitive beginning and thus a definitive end. But, aren’t those just the dimensions of the human box in which we live? But, God does not live in the containment of our boxes. God is outside the box. His thoughts and His ways far exceed our own. So, let our prayers and our thoughts for the new year focus on God and His Son and their desire for our lives lived in this world. If we follow His will for our lives then everything else can and will be taken care of. Just as Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount, “Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all else will be given to you as well.”

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those the blessing of our upcoming New Year- 2014
* For those who will and won’t be travelling this Christmas season that their time be safe and filled with the Holy Spirit
* For continued protection and provision for those facing terrible thunder and snow storms across the country
* For our government and budget to become balanced before the Lord; I pray for Jubilee!; and that our President withdraw the current healthcare plan in favor of one that God will provide as what is best for all His people.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and the open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede and plant the seed of faith, hope and love
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land” and the people of Sweden
* My 57/57 challenge; purity of heart, mind, body and soul
* For deliverance from cancer in my brother; healing for Lisa’s body, mind and spirit as she prepares; healing for JoAnn, Debbie and Linda; for Mack to blessed in the direction he has chosen for his life and a trust in God to provide healing of body, mind and soul which leads him to full-time employment and discipline to keep his life a glory to God; for all the concerns lifted up in LG; for co-workers who are believing for deliverance for their daughter and complete healing for her unborn child; for the chains to be unbroken for my good friends Tom and Rosalee and for Tom’s recovery from a seizure; for Dr. Weaver’s release from recurring cancer; for deliverance from someone who wants to rule over me and is setting me up in their mind that I am someone they must rule over instead of collaborate with

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world)

* God is bringing complete healing and comfort to Lisa
* God is in control and still speaks into our chaos to make sense of our world
* God is manifesting healing in my family and providing wisdom for a challenging decision for each of us (all vocationally-centered) daily

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, reveal to us what Your will is for our lives in the coming year- how we may serve You best each day in Jesus’ name. AMEN.

1512

December 27, 2013

Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013!

HIS WORD for Today- The Third Day of Christmas:

Luke 2.4-7

“So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

One of the nuances in the biblical geography is the use of the term “up.” Going up actually meant a rise in elevation. For example, you had to go “up” to Jerusalem, literally. Jerusalem was a fortified city set on a hill. When Jesus taught His followers in the Sermon on the Mount he said, “A city set on a hill cannot be hid.” He followed up by saying “You cannot hid a candle under a bushel basket.” Makes sense, actually, because the bushel basket was not airtight so it would not deny oxygen to the flame. And, the basket was make of woven straw so putting a flame near it would certainly compromise the basket. I do not think Jesus was speaking of practicalities and science projects. He was talking about the light of life which is in each of us called God’s spirit which He breathed into us as we were born. We certainly should not hide the glory of God from the world. The glory of God in us is meant to be shown to the world. When Jesus was born, the glory of God illumined the early morning sky with the heavenly hosts singing “Glory to God in the highest and on earth, peace and goodwill to all men.” The Temple in Jerusalem was illumined at night so that its alabaster walls could be seen both night and day as a constant reminder of God’s abiding presence. Jesus is the Light of the World and in Him is the life of all men. We certainly look up to Him in adoration and in obedience. He images the Father so that we can know of God’s abiding presence.

So, when Joseph and Mary left Nazareth upon the decree of Caesar Augustus for the entire Roman Empire, they went up to Bethlehem in Judea. They were transformed from “lowly” to “high and lifted up.” This happened because God was with them, literally and spiritually. God is with us all. His name is Emmanuel, God with us. We could say that things were looking for Mary and Joseph. We do not know what hardships they may have endured for Mary being with child before she and Joseph were formally married. To some it may have been just a sign of the times; teenage pregnancy could have been commonplace because if a girl waited beyond her teen years to get married they would be deemed unmarriageable. But, Mary was just barely a teenager. Even Joseph feared a scandal and hardship for her. It was not an easy time for many and probably harder for them. But, the Christmas story is about the blessings of God poured out on them- they had a place to stay when they arrived in Bethlehem, the kindness of strangers, the wonderful stories of the shepherds and the gifts of the Magi. There must have been more to the story than we know because they also found a place to live and work while in Bethlehem because they were there for two years, at least. God provided for them and He provides for us. Our lives are looking up as well when we have Jesus with us.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those who will lead God’s people in worship, praise and service this weekend
* For those who will and won’t be travelling this Christmas season that their time be safe and filled with the Holy Spirit
* For continued protection and provision for those facing terrible thunder and snow storms across the country
* For our government and budget to become balanced before the Lord; I pray for Jubilee!; and that our President withdraw the current healthcare plan in favor of one that God will provide as what is best for all His people.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and the open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede and plant the seed of faith, hope and love
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land” and the people of Swaziland
* My 57/57 challenge; purity of heart, mind, body and soul
* For deliverance from cancer in my brother; healing for Lisa’s body, mind and spirit as she prepares; healing for JoAnn, Debbie and Linda; for Mack to blessed in the direction he has chosen for his life and a trust in God to provide healing of body, mind and soul which leads him to full-time employment and discipline to keep his life a glory to God; for all the concerns lifted up in LG; for co-workers who are believing for deliverance for their daughter and complete healing for her unborn child; for the chains to be unbroken for my good friends Tom and Rosalee and for Tom’s recovery from a seizure; for Dr. Weaver’s release from recurring cancer; for deliverance from someone who wants to rule over me and is setting me up in their mind that I am someone they must rule over instead of collaborate with

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world)

* God is bringing complete healing and comfort to Lisa
* God is in control and still speaks into our chaos to make sense of our world
* God is manifesting healing in my family and providing wisdom for a challenging decision for each of us (all vocationally-centered) daily

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, for all that You have given us we give You thanks. Our lives are certainly looking up and moving up, up, up. AMEN.

1511

December 26, 2013

Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013!

HIS WORD for Today- The Second Day of Christmas:

Luke 2.4-7

“So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.”

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

You would think that having returned to your ancestral home where relatives young and old, known or unknown, would have welcomed you into their houses especially when the young maiden in your company is pregnant. Instead, Joseph had to try and find room elsewhere because there was no room for them in a cousin’s house. Why? Could it have been that there was no room due to the census traffic and every descendent of David was in town? It is very unlikely that this would have been the case for the census would have most likely been satisfied by the head of each household. While there would have been a great number of men included it would seem hospitable that someone would have surrendered their place so that Mary could have been better provided for. It may have been due to the reality that Mary was pregnant and not yet formally married only betrothed. Scandal? It would have been proper for Mary to accompany Joseph because who else would care for her? Perhaps, Elisabeth who was already caring for her own son, John, could have been a guardian. She declared Mary to be blessed and favored. But, was that a popular opinion in her neighborhood as well especially since her husband served as priest in the Temple? So, it was left to Joseph to provide care and company for Mary. He had accepted a great responsibility in accepting Mary, a pregnant Mary, as his betrothed.

So, here we have a descendent of David in the city of David treated as if it was David on the run from King Saul in the days of old. David the shepherd boy who slew the giant, Goliath, to redeem and esteem the name of God. Now, Jesus, the Lamb of God, who would defeat Satan and his ally, eternal death, and redeem the people of God from their sins. No room in the family home. No room in the guest house. No room in the nearby inn. Only room in a cave taken over by the innkeeper to serve as a stable with a stone hollow that served as the manger, a feeding trough. This is how the King of Kings and Lord of Lords would abide in the world at His beginning. It would be in a borrowed tomb, that of another Joseph, in which the body of the Savior would be laid to rest from His labors at the cross. He uttered His words of affirmation, “It is finished, it is done” at the cross signifying His would was done and now it was time for His Sabbath rest. He rose on the third day, Sunday-the first day of the week, just as I believe He was born on a Sunday. The sun rises in spite of man’s efforts to the contrary to deny the place of the Lord in our lives. It is undeniable. God doesn’t play the odds. God redeems the odd, the outcast, the left out, the forsaken, the ignored, the wounded, the displaced, the weary, the weak, the destitute, the homeless, the fatherless, the abused, the forgotten alongside of those who are everything but. This is the context of our Christmas understanding. It cannot be put to the side. It cannot be dressed up in our own images. It is made in the image of God as He intended for it to be just as we have been. As we are called to remember the Sabbath and keep it holy; let us also remember the day when Christ was born and keep it holy, too.
PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those who will and won’t be travelling this Christmas season that their time be safe and filled with the Holy Spirit
* For continued protection and provision for those facing terrible thunder and snow storms across the country
* For our government and budget to become balanced before the Lord; I pray for Jubilee!; and that our President withdraw the current healthcare plan in favor of one that God will provide as what is best for all His people.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and the open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede and plant the seed of faith, hope and love
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land” and the people of Suriname
* My 57/57 challenge; purity of heart, mind, body and soul
* For deliverance from cancer in my brother; healing for Lisa’s body, mind and spirit as she prepares; healing for JoAnn, Debbie and Linda; for Mack to blessed in the direction he has chosen for his life and a trust in God to provide healing of body, mind and soul which leads him to full-time employment and discipline to keep his life a glory to God; for all the concerns lifted up in LG; for co-workers who are believing for deliverance for their daughter and complete healing for her unborn child; for the chains to be unbroken for my good friends Tom and Rosalee and for Tom’s recovery from a seizure; for Dr. Weaver’s release from recurring cancer; for deliverance from someone who wants to rule over me and is setting me up in their mind that I am someone they must rule over instead of collaborate with

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world)

* God is bringing complete healing and comfort to Lisa
* God is in control and still speaks into our chaos to make sense of our world
* God is manifesting healing in my family and providing wisdom for a challenging decision for each of us (all vocationally-centered) daily

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, this is the day which You have made. We will not only rejoice and be glad in it; we will honor the spirit of this holy day and keep it throughout the year. AMEN.

1510

Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013!

HIS WORD for Today- The First Day of Christmas:

Luke 2.4-20

“So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen which were just as they had been told.

REFLECTIONS ON HIS WORD:

God said it best. Enough said! Merry Christmas and God bless you everyone!

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* Merry Christmas as we celebrate the anticipation of the world to see Jesus!
* For those who will and won’t be travelling this Christmas season that their time be safe and filled with the Holy Spirit
* For continued protection and provision for those facing terrible thunder and snow storms across the country
* For our government and budget to become balanced before the Lord; I pray for Jubilee!; and that our President withdraw the current healthcare plan in favor of one that God will provide as what is best for all His people.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and the open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede and plant the seed of faith, hope and love
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land” and the people of Sudan
* My 57/57 challenge; purity of heart, mind, body and soul
* For deliverance from cancer in my brother; healing for Lisa’s body, mind and spirit as she prepares; healing for JoAnn, Debbie and Linda; for Mack to blessed in the direction he has chosen for his life and a trust in God to provide healing of body, mind and soul which leads him to full-time employment and discipline to keep his life a glory to God; for all the concerns lifted up in LG; for co-workers who are believing for deliverance for their daughter and complete healing for her unborn child; for the chains to be unbroken for my good friends Tom and Rosalee and for Tom’s recovery from a seizure; for Dr. Weaver’s release from recurring cancer; for deliverance from someone who wants to rule over me and is setting me up in their mind that I am someone they must rule over instead of collaborate with

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world)

* God is bringing complete healing and comfort to Lisa
* God is in control and still speaks into our chaos to make sense of our world
* God is manifesting healing in my family and providing wisdom for a challenging decision for each of us (all vocationally-centered) daily

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, for the gift of Your Word of hope and truth, grace and peace, joy and love, we give You thanks. AMEN.

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1509

December 24, 2013

Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013!

HIS WORD for Today- The Twenty-fourth Day of Advent (Grace):

John 1.14

“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

One of the things I like about the Christmas season is how the world becomes a little more graceful. Even non-believers in the Christ child, which is the reason for the season, become overwhelmed with the spirit of giving. Perhaps they do not give with the right spirit, the Spirit of Christmas, but the Lord can and does move in mysterious ways- even in the commercialism of Christmas. Visions of ice skaters, snowflakes, dancing reindeer, ballet dancers in the Nutcracker Suite, caroles sung by a choir and silent night are all a part of the vision of grace which comes over the world. Whether the world likes it or not God has something to say.

Of course, that is a limited view of grace’s impact on the world. There are many places where just the opposite would be true. Christmas is not always snowfall and tinsel. In the warmer climates those visions may not be the norm but grace is still apparent. Just as apparent as the Word of God is in Jesus Christ who was and is full of grace and truth. Even in the babe of Bethlehem the vision of grace is not lost. Amidst the stable animals, hay and implements the glory of God was revealed. I believe that if it was indeed a census that brought Joseph and Mary to Bethlehem because they were descendants of David the city would have been filled to overflowing with “family.” It could have also been during the season of Passover and the same would be equally true. The stable may have been hostel for a number of families looking for a place to stay. A hostile hostel only in its environment. And the birth process isn’t exactly graceful until it is done. What makes the birth graceful is the baby. Born in innocence and infinite possibilities just as you and I were we, too, are filled with grace by the God who knew us before we were born.

This world is still a hostile world. Death continues. Wars are waged. Sin invades. Disease infects. Hate pervades. Hope is lost. Love is fleeting. Joy is muted. But, all of that can change when we focus on God’s graceful work in Mary which is Jesus Christ. Find the hours of grace, mighty men, and enjoy the glory of God which comes into your world in this blessed season.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* Merry Christmas Eve as we celebrate the anticipation of the world to see Jesus!
* For those who will and won’t be travelling this Christmas season that their time be safe and filled with the Holy Spirit
* For continued protection and provision for those facing terrible thunder and snow storms across the country
* For our government and budget to become balanced before the Lord; I pray for Jubilee!; and that our President withdraw the current healthcare plan in favor of one that God will provide as what is best for all His people.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and the open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede and plant the seed of faith, hope and love
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land” and the people of Sri Lanka
* My 57/57 challenge; purity of heart, mind, body and soul
* For deliverance from cancer in my brother; healing for Lisa’s body, mind and spirit as she prepares; healing for JoAnn, Debbie and Linda; for Mack to blessed in the direction he has chosen for his life and a trust in God to provide healing of body, mind and soul which leads him to full-time employment and discipline to keep his life a glory to God; for all the concerns lifted up in LG; for co-workers who are believing for deliverance for their daughter and complete healing for her unborn child; for the chains to be unbroken for my good friends Tom and Rosalee and for Tom’s recovery from a seizure; for Dr. Weaver’s release from recurring cancer; for deliverance from someone who wants to rule over me and is setting me up in their mind that I am someone they must rule over instead of collaborate with

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world)

* God is bringing complete healing and comfort to Lisa
* God is in control and still speaks into our chaos to make sense of our world
* God is manifesting healing in my family and providing wisdom for a challenging decision for each of us (all vocationally-centered) daily

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, thank You for moving into our world and filling us with grace and truth. AMEN.

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1508

December 23, 2013

Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013!

HIS WORD for Today- The Twenty-third Day of Advent (Grace):

Ephesians 2.8,9

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

Some Advent traditions teach that the final Sunday of Advent is symbolized by love. The Spirit has directed me to celebrate grace this year in our Advent study, candlelighting and celebration. As the Apostle Paul wrote to the mighty men of Ephesus, “Grace, a gift of God, has been given to you so that by your faith you can be saved.” The Greek word for grace is “Xaris” which means “favor, disposed to, inclined, favorable towards, leaning towards a shared benefit.” If that word isn’t packed with meaning and opportunity, especially at Christmas, then we are not reading the same page.

First, let me lift out of Today’s Word the very truth that “grace” was a gift from God so that we would understand that it was not derived by works nor any part of a contractual arrangement or conditional relationship. God gives without conditions. He certainly lays out the consequences of accepting or rejecting His gifts and blessings but to be engaged in a conditional relationship represents legalism and that means God is involved in only “give and take” relationships. That is not the relationship which God desires nor empowers with His children. It is also significant that all the individuals involved in the Christmas story are represented in simple terms without elaboration and being dressed up. There is nothing in their story that says they earned their part in the Christmas story except that they believed in God and in Him alone. They did not take Jesus from Heaven, they received Him into their own lives; sometimes at the sacrifice of other creature comforts or position within the community. Jesus was all they had and all they needed. That, my brothers, is grace- God’s grace, which is sufficient to meet all our needs.

Second, Elisabeth, the mother of John the Baptizer, declared to her cousin, Mary, that she was “most blessed and highly favored of God.” She could see and experience the grace of God in her and it was taking over her whole life, being and understanding. Mary needed to hear that good word. As a young teenager, newly engaged and suddenly the recipient of this great responsibility to bear the Son of God into the world, there was much to consider. Perhaps it was too much, but by her faith in God she knew that God would never ask more of her than she herself was capable of accomplishing. We have been given the responsibility to bear the Word of God, Jesus Christ, into the world as well. It is a “born again” relationship because we certainly will not be giving birth to the Christ as Mary did. But, as with Nicodemus, the gift of being born again is the consequence and blessing made possible by God’s grace. It confers on all believers the status of “most blessed and highly favored of God.” We may be looked down upon by the world but when God looks down on us it is only because He does so from His vantage point of Heaven above. His look lifts us up unto the fullness of life because He sees us the way He saw His Son who walked on this earth with us. In fact, if someone were to ask God about any one of us, He would say to them the same as He spoke to Peter, James and John on the Mount of Transfiguration, “This is my Son with whom I am well pleased. Listen to him.”

Finally, I want to celebrate that grace teaches a “leaning toward a shared benefit.” God does not need anything from us in order to be God. He gives us freely from the wealth of His Kingdom to meet our daily needs as we pray for them and believe in Him to receive. But, because it is the nature of God’s love and desire to be in relationship with us and us with Him there is a shared benefit. We can love without receiving love in return. But, what greater effect is there when love is returned. We cannot give anything to God but ourselves with declarations of love, affection and commitment to be true to Him in all things, in all ways, in all places and in times. Sure, we fall short because we are yet imperfect human beings. But, God loves that we come back to Him to seek the forgiveness He has already been so willing to give. We do benefit God because love is made complete in our desire to love Him. We can’t love perfectly on our own but God has made it possible for love’s circle to be completed by grace. What we cannot do on our own, we are able to accomplish with God by grace in faith.

It seems to me, mighty men of God, that if we give anything this Christmas season, it has to begin with the gifting of grace- God’s favor, the reminder and remembrance of His great gift to us in Jesus Christ; and to be graceful toward all people so they might come to know and experience the goodness and greatness of God in their own lives.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those who will and won’t be travelling this Christmas season that their time be safe and filled with the Holy Spirit
* For continued protection and provision for those facing terrible thunder and snow storms across the country
* For our government and budget to become balanced before the Lord; I pray for Jubilee!; and that our President withdraw the current healthcare plan in favor of one that God will provide as what is best for all His people.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and the open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede and plant the seed of faith, hope and love
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land” and the people of Spain
* My 57/57 challenge; purity of heart, mind, body and soul
* For deliverance from cancer in my brother; healing for Lisa’s body, mind and spirit as she prepares for surgery; healing for JoAnn, Debbie and Linda; for Mack to blessed in the direction he has chosen for his life and a trust in God to provide healing of body, mind and soul which leads him to full-time employment and discipline to keep his life a glory to God; for all the concerns lifted up in LG; for co-workers who are believing for deliverance for their daughter and complete healing for her unborn child; for the chains to be unbroken for my good friends Tom and Rosalee and for Tom’s recovery from a seizure; for Dr. Weaver’s release from recurring cancer; for deliverance from someone who wants to rule over me and is setting me up in their mind that I am someone they must rule over instead of collaborate with

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world)

* God is effecting Lisa’s healing even before we get to the hospital
* God is in control and still speaks into our chaos to make sense of our world
* God is manifesting healing in my family and providing wisdom for a challenging decision for each of us (all vocationally-centered) daily

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, even as we wander awkwardly through this world, You have supplied us with grace sufficient to cover our sins and turn our best intentions into reality. Thank You for making life’s possibilities real to us for Your glory and Your good. AMEN.

1507

December 22, 2013

Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013!

HIS WORD for Today- The Twenty-second Day of Advent (Grace):

Matthew 1.18-21,24

“This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly. But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife.”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

Love is the intention of the heart committed to doing what is right for others. Joseph certainly was a mighty man of love. Even before he knew that the baby in Mary’s womb was the conception of the Holy Spirit and would be the Messiah, Joseph considered both his obligation to God and to the future of Mary. True, if he had divorced her she would have gone away in shame once it was found that she was pregnant. It was easy enough to hand over a paper and say “I am done with this woman.” In other times, he would have had to condemn her for adultery and she could have well been stoned. But, this was a child, barely a young woman. Her whole future was ahead of her and it would be better to find a quiet place for her to have the baby and disappear into lostness of man. But, this was not the way of Joseph. His way was to do what he could to satisfy the law, this was the basis for his religious faith, and to satisfy righteousness, this was the basis for his love. He wanted to extend grace to this girl.

Where do we desire to extend grace? Are our actions those of men motivated by love for others and a deep respect for God? Are we so involved with God that we have a kind conscience for humanity? We could be so heavenly-minded that we are no earthly good. The opposite would be true as well and unfortunately for many in this world it is a dominating thought that we could be so earthly good that we are not heavenly-minded. But, grace is the balance point between heaven and earth. According to grace, God gives us what we do not deserve according to the law but according to His heart. He has a heart for us and acted in grace to love us back into His merciful presence. He could have left us quietly and divorced Himself from any responsibility for our welfare. Could God cease to be God? In no way! God is beyond all descriptions- grace. Yes, He is powerful and just and mighty. He holds the power of life and death in His hands and wields a mighty sword. He can be vicious to the enemy and meek to the victim. And, in sin, all humanity is just that- enemy and victim. We did not ask to be born into sin. Sin was the product of those who existed before us. Yes, we certainly learn to sin and divorce ourselves, or at least attempt to do so, from God. But, it is really on the attempt to avoid His wrath as if we could say “out of sight; out of heart, mind and soul.” But, God just won’t leave us alone!

Thank God He wouldn’t leave us alone. He took us in to be with Him for all time. We are His bride and through us He bears the future of life on earth with faith, hope and love. He extended and extends grace to us so that we will not bear the brunt of shame and guilt. He blesses us with His Holy Spirit so that we might live in wisdom and truth through a spirit of love, mercy and grace. If we pause for a moment, we are Mary ourselves in whom God believes, desires and calls Jesus to be borne in us. And, in those whom He has given us as mighty men to care for. How shall we express that trust to others? Will it not be with mercy and grace as well? Shall we not take them in and love them so they can reach the full measure of the stature of Christ? Is this not our purpose as mighty men of God? I listened to some movie theology last night that certainly applies here. A little boy who was dying asked a trusted friend, “Why is God taking me?” His friend replied, “He is not taking you. He is receiving you.” In the thought of receiving comes the corollary of giving. God is giving us the opportunity to do what is right and good at Christmas. He is giving us the Christchild. The question for us is “How will we receive it?” I pray it will be with faith, hope, love and grace.

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those who will lead God’s people in worship, praise and service this weekend and the days leading up to Christmas Day
* For continued protection and provision for those facing terrible thunder and snow storms across the country
* For our government and budget to become balanced before the Lord; I pray for Jubilee!; and that our President withdraw the current healthcare plan in favor of one that God will provide as what is best for all His people.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and the open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede and plant the seed of faith, hope and love
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land” and the people of South Africa
* My 57/57 challenge; purity of heart, mind, body and soul
* For deliverance from cancer in my brother; healing for Lisa’s body, mind and spirit as she prepares for surgery; healing for JoAnn, Debbie and Linda; for Mack to blessed in the direction he has chosen for his life and a trust in God to provide healing of body, mind and soul which leads him to full-time employment and discipline to keep his life a glory to God; for all the concerns lifted up in LG; for co-workers who are believing for deliverance for their daughter and complete healing for her unborn child; for the chains to be unbroken for my good friends Tom and Rosalee and for Tom’s recovery from a seizure; for Dr. Weaver’s release from recurring cancer; for deliverance from someone who wants to rule over me and is setting me up in their mind that I am someone they must rule over instead of collaborate with

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world)

* God is effecting Lisa’s healing even before we get to the hospital
* God is in control and still speaks into our chaos to make sense of our world
* God is manifesting healing in my family and providing wisdom for a challenging decision for each of us (all vocationally-centered) daily

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, by your mercy we are saved. By your grace we live day to day. May that mercy and grace become the true gifts we share in this season of Christmas and throughout all the year, in Jesus’ name. AMEN.

1506

December 21, 2013

Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013!

HIS WORD for Today- The Twenty-first Day of Advent (Joy):

Luke 15.3-8

“Then Jesus told them this parable: “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

I would love to believe, mighty men of God, that we fully embrace the message of Christmas and keep it within our hearts the year round. It took the visitation of three Christmas ghosts- past, present and future, to awaken this truth in Ebenezer Scrooge. He had to face the truth of his own mortality before recognizing that there is joy in life and life after life-challenging events. Joy is about restoration and renewal. When the prophets speak of joy it is because God’s justice is meted out on Israel but not for the ultimate destruction and damning judgment. No, God’s justice was the means of making way for truth and righteousness to be known again in the land. His promise was not to utterly destroy Israel but to ultimately restore Israel with His redeeming love. When the remnant return, when the land becomes fruitful again, when the people follow the way of the Lord there is joy. Hope is the defining reality.

Our hope and joy is in Jesus Christ. Following the shepherd illustration, I have found myself in the parable of the lost sheep as a story to express Christmas joy. The good shepherd is concerned for all his sheep. His charge was for the whole flock and not for a majority of them. When one is lost by willful or unintentional actions, the whole flock is diminished and the shepherd is burdened with the loss. It is his responsibility. Doing what he is supposed to do brings him great joy. What is his responsibility? To give back to God what is due Him. Now lest you think the shepherd is only responsible for the 100 sheep you are wrong. God did not give the shepherd 100 ewes or 100 rams. He gave him a flock of sheep. It would stand to reason that the command to be fruitful and multiply is to be applied here as well. If the shepherd only returns 100 sheep then something is amiss. It is for this reason the shepherd rejoices in finding the one who was lost; even if it is just the lifeless body. All sheep are accounted for including the ones who were born during his watch. What joy there is to bring back a lost sheep alive. What greater joy is there when the shepherd returns a flock of sheep that have shown increase under his care! What awesome joy there is when it is shared with others so they will know there is hope for them as well.

Now, mighty men, consider the new lamb that was born in Bethlehem in that pre-dawn hour 2017 years ago. The angels sang “Joy to the world!” and invited the shepherds to rejoice as well for the flock of God had been increased. Their going to Bethlehem to see was an affirmation and an accounting of the good which God was sharing with the world. It was to those who found themselves outside of the mainstream of life that were brought in. The lost were being restored by God’s redeeming love in Jesus Christ. He was and is the Lamb of God but not that alone. He is also the Good Shepherd who goes out to seek the lost and bring them back to the Master, His Father, who had entrusted Him with the charge for lost souls. There will be an accounting, mighty men, for each and every person. God’s knows them by name and they are written in the Book of Life. It isn’t really about judgment at this point but restoration and redemption. Our charge as shepherds, especially at Christmas time, is to give to the poor, restore the lost and give thanks to God with great joy for the things which He has done for us!

PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those who will lead God’s people in worship, praise and service this weekend and the days leading up to Christmas Day
* For our government and budget to become balanced before the Lord; I pray for Jubilee!; and that our President withdraw the current healthcare plan in favor of one that God will provide as what is best for all His people.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and the open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede and plant the seed of faith, hope and love
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land” and the people of Somalia
* My 57/57 challenge; purity of heart, mind, body and soul
* For deliverance from cancer in my brother; healing for Lisa’s body, mind and spirit as she prepares for surgery; healing for JoAnn, Debbie and Linda; for Mack to blessed in the direction he has chosen for his life and a trust in God to provide healing of body, mind and soul which leads him to full-time employment and discipline to keep his life a glory to God; for all the concerns lifted up in LG; for co-workers who are believing for deliverance for their daughter and complete healing for her unborn child; for the chains to be unbroken for my good friends Tom and Rosalee and for Tom’s recovery from a seizure; for Dr. Weaver’s release from recurring cancer; for deliverance from someone who wants to rule over me and is setting me up in their mind that I am someone they must rule over instead of collaborate with

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world)

* God provided speedy process at the hospital in preparation for Monday’s healing as well as an opportunity to bless a wait-server
* God is in control and still speaks into our chaos to make sense of our world
* God is manifesting healing in my family and providing wisdom for a challenging decision for each of us (all vocationally-centered) daily

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, You know us. You know all about us, yet you love us still. You have sent the Good Shepherd, Jesus, into the world to redeem what is lost and restore it to You. Here we are, in Jesus’ name. AMEN.

1505

December 20, 2013

Love one another deeply from the heart of Jesus in 2013!

HIS WORD for Today- The Twentieth Day of Advent (Joy):

Isaiah 52.8

“Listen! Your watchmen lift up their voices; together they shout for joy. When the Lord returns to Zion,
they will see it with their own eyes.”

REFLECTING IN HIS WORD:

If we look closely into the “Christmas” story found in the gospel told by Luke it really is an advent story. Matthew is an epiphany story but I will discuss that after Christmas. I believe Luke is an advent story because it holds the four main characters of the advent season: prophets, shepherds, angels and Christ. They serve as the markers of God’s grace giving to the world. The prophets foretold that God’s love would win out over evil and His people would be brought back to their rightful place before His throne as welcomed children and not as condemned trespassers. The shepherds were the archetype of Israel’s true king. In the Old Testament it would be David- the shepherd, priest and king of Israel. In the New Testament it would be the disciples who would feed the lambs, the sheep and tend the flock. Hah! You thought I was going to say Christ, didn’t you. But, Jesus didn’t pursue the throne of Israel. He already sat at the right hand of God. It was left to His disciples, after the leadership of Peter, to be lords over the Gentiles and the followers in Israel. They were not to lead as the leaders of their day but as Christ had taught them to do as since He was the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. The angels rejoiced at the continued victory of God over Satan. How Satan must have rolled over in his grave of Hell when the angels revealed God’s ultimate triumph to the shepherds in the fields. The prophets foretold joy to the world in the coming of the Lord. The shepherds would behold the joy of the Lord as they saw the impossible made possible. The angels would illuminate joy in song and fill heaven and earth with their anthem. But, Isaiah declared another group of individuals who would also behold the joy of the Lord and declare its presence in the world. As a prophet he was familiar with the needed watchmen. We hear of them again in Ezekiel. The watchmen were set on the perimeter of the camp at the edge of darkness and light to key an eye out for intruders and thieves. They were set on the city walls to survey the distance for any sign of an invading army or threat to the community. They were the advanced warning system. The peace of the community depended on them to do their job. Ezekiel was a watchman as well but not for any intruder into the camp of the refugees in Babylon nor for an invader over Israel (they had already been conquered by nations). Instead, he was a watchman for the glory of God and he did not disappoint. When the theophany appeared in the north descending to the south along the Chebar, he knew it was the Lord God. They had not been forsaken nor abandoned. God did not live in Israel and heaven alone. He was with them even in their bondage sojourn. The shepherds were watchmen as well. It made sense for them to be on guard over their flocks. These flocks were not just any sheep but the paschal lambs meant for sacrifice in the temple as a means of remembering the atonement promise of God. Unbeknownst to them they were watchmen for Mary, Joseph and Jesus. They were not their to alert them of impending doom but of the coming of the glory of God and the joy He would bring into the world. Their presence was a confirmation for Jesus’ earthly parents of His heavenly good and divine appointment.

But, be alert mighty men of God. You are watchmen as well. You do sit on the break of dawn, the edge of darkness, the city wall and the visionary hilltop. You must keep watch over your flocks because their peace rests on you. You must keep an eye out for those who would seek to destroy. But, even more so, you must be ready to shout for joy the coming of the Lord when you see Him. You are the affirmation of their faith and trust in God. You will see it with your own eyes. You will declare it with your own voice. You will live it with your own lives- JOY!
PRAYER CONCERNS (share your needs and others in the comment section so that God’s Mighty Men can join prayer forces as intercessors of faith, hope and love)

* For those who will lead God’s people in worship, praise and service this weekend and the days leading up to Christmas Day
* For our government and budget to become balanced before the Lord; I pray for Jubilee!; and that our President withdraw the current healthcare plan in favor of one that God will provide as what is best for all His people.
* For those who are seeking to put an end to human trafficking that their success would be overwhelming so that the healing may be equally so
* For the violence to stop in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey and North Korea and the open roads for peace be made so that healing may begin and peace rules
* For protection on Christians around the world and the celebration that all life lived in Christ will be blessed with life in the Kingdom
* For the mission teams sent out by the Church into all the world that they remain safe as they intercede and plant the seed of faith, hope and love
* For Mission Waco, “No Man’s Land” and the people of the Solomon Islands
* My 57/57 challenge; purity of heart, mind, body and soul
* For deliverance from cancer in my brother; healing for Lisa’s body, mind and spirit as she prepares for surgery; healing for JoAnn, Debbie and Linda; for Mack to blessed in the direction he has chosen for his life and a trust in God to provide healing of body, mind and soul which leads him to full-time employment and discipline to keep his life a glory to God; for all the concerns lifted up in LG; for co-workers who are believing for deliverance for their daughter and complete healing for her unborn child; for the chains to be unbroken for my good friends Tom and Rosalee and for Tom’s recovery from a seizure; for Dr. Weaver’s release from recurring cancer; for deliverance from someone who wants to rule over me and is setting me up in their mind that I am someone they must rule over instead of collaborate with

PRAYER CELEBRATIONS (where we see Him at work in the world)

* Testing is over for my students who endured 14 days of testing in 15 days of classes; I pray wisdom will overtake our leadership and we will never subject these students to such an ordeal again…they should go to school to learn not burn
* God delivered me with grace through a called meeting yesterday and His goodness endures forever
* God is in control and still speaks into our chaos to make sense of our world
* God is manifesting healing in my family and providing wisdom for a challenging decision for each of us (all vocationally-centered) daily

ABIDING IN HIS PRESENCE THROUGH PRAYER:

Father, with eyes wide open we watch the world to sound the alarm when danger rises up and to sing praise when joy comes in the morning. Clear our vision with Your own and strengthen these mighty men as they man their post as watchmen over Your people, the flock of Your Hand. AMEN.

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