Thursday, June 21, 2007

Lost in wonder Lost in worship

If you would like view other posts which do not neccessary have a prayer theme - you can view my other blog click here

Prayer & preaching...

Preaching has to be birthed God's Word which is of great importance. We need to recognise that preaching can have an effect on people - this is why it is so important that preparation and the preaching itself is saturated in prayer.
I have been following a series about preaching in prayer on John Brand's Preaching blog & you can follow it if you click here

Monday, April 09, 2007

Be glad always!

Spotted this gem in Romans 12. I was reading Romans 12 in the new living translation and verses 12 hit me:

"Be Glad for all God is planning for you. Be patient in trouble and always prayerful" (Romans 12:12, NLT)

There are all attributes we need to have in all circumstances. I am be glad however events turn out. I am to be patient even with any kind of trouble. I need to always be inj the spirit of prayer.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

The Price is Paid!

We stand in the court room wating for the judge to pass verdict. But the verdict that comes through is that price is paid, somebody has already gone through the sentence for you.
This is the message of Romans 8:1 - there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ. This means the slate is clean. We can boldly come into the presence becuase of Jesus did for us on the cross.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Re understanding Prayer

Hey I have finnally completed the final pages of the book [re] understanding prayer Prayer written by Kyle Lake. As I have already noted in a previous post - the writer is a learner. and when he say he is re-understand he is not seeking to introduces us to a new technique or anything special like that. But just the real sense that so often we may well get stale and need to discover afresh prayer.
The heart of the book and the ultimatlely the message is summed up in the subtitle is "A Fresh approach to conversation with God". It is so easy to use churchy words in prayer such as "Bless" "lead, guide direct" "Repent". It is suggested here that it not about how many good theological words you may be able to fit into your prayer. Prayer is about a conversation and here is a quote from Lake:

"The essence of the conversation, though is altogether different.
It means you step into a dialogue not entirely knowing how the conversation will end or where the road will take you. It involves thoughts and feelings that are present in the moment. Intrinsic to true conversation are qualtities like silence, listening, truthfulness, and presence. They are no generated responses designed to sound spiritual. If so, we ask ourselves, who or what are we selling to God? Cars?" (p132)

We enter into this continued conversation (prayer) by faith not neccessary knowing what the outcome it will be.
Lake really says that prayer is not just what we utter - it is a lifestyle - it wouldnt be fair just for us to compartmentalize God into our schedules. Lake also says this about a conversation of prayer:

"If we want more from our lives with God, we could forge new
territory. Terrain that's not covered. We could allow prayer to
develop fully into what it's already becoming - fluid, seamless, open ended conversation that threads our day." (P161)

This devotional encouraged me afresh about prayer and need to be living day to day conversing with God.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Prayer in Busy days

I was dipping into a book entitled In Green Pastures a classic devotional written by JR Miller where he gives wee gems for each day of the year. The following is the entry for January 5 entitled "Prayer in Busy Days" on page 13:

"It is prayer that God shows his face to his children, that they have visions of his beauty and glory, that the things of his love come down as gifts into their likeness. If you would be blessed, get many seasons of prayer into your busy harrassed, tempted struggling life. It is in these quite moments that you really grow. Somewhere in every vexed, feverish day get a little 'silent time' for prayer. It will bring heaven down into your heart and make you strong for service." In Green

So often we need that quiet moment in a busy day to recharge our batteries!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Law Gives Freedom Part 2

Over the past few days, we have been looking at a passage which for me in one word speaks about obedience! Being obedient in prayer is a good quality to have. This one phrase "The law give freedom" tells us what happens if we choose to obey this perfect law. We will know freedom! There is one or two New Testament passages which speak about obeying the law.

Matthew 7:24
"Therefore everyone who hears these word of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock".

Romans 8:1-2
"Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Lord set me from the from the law of sin and death."

Law gives freedom part 1

"But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom and continue to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it - he will be blessed in what he does." James 1:25

We have spoken about hearing and responding and this is what happening in our daily communication with the Lord. The passage here in James 1 talks about the law which gives freedom and the same phrase is repeated later on in James (James 2:12). When the law is spoken of in the new Testament we often think of the legalism of the pharisees. This is the negative side of the law. But take heart there is also a positive side of the law - the law gives freedom. If we start out in the Old Testament we see this.

Exodus 19:7-8
So Moses went back and summoned the people and set before them all the words the Lord had given him to speak. The people all responded together, "We will do everything the LORD has said" So Moses brought their answer back to the LORD.

Psalm 19:7
"The law of the Lord is perfect reviving the soul. The statutes of the Lord are turstworthy, making the wise simple."

For me, Psalm 19 helps me to understand this phrase "Law gives freedom".
The law of the Lord is not legalistic but indeed is refreshment for our souls! In obeying God, there is freedom.

What does this phrase mean to you?

Sunday, January 14, 2007

The inspection of the mirror

"And remember it is a message to obey and not just to listen to. If you dont obey you are only fooling around. For if you just listen and dont obey, it is like looking at your face in a mirror but doing nothing to improve your appearance. You see yourself, walk away and forget what you look like."
James 1:22-24

James like using little proverbs such as this one looking in the mirror but not doing anything to change your appearance. This couple of verses help us to unpack what the previous verse has said. It is also gives us a bit of a break by using an everyday experence to get the point accross.

Change has to happen and the questions we often ask:

What do I look like?
Having observed, how can I change to this or that?

Prayer: Lord we pray that you change us to reflect you more and more as we await your second coming.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Respond to what you hear

"So get rid of all the filfth and evil in your lives and humbly accept the message God has planted in your hearts. For it is strong enough to save your souls."

The previous verse has spoken about listening - listening to God! But is what is God saying? But we cannot come to his presence knowing that moral fiflth is so preevalent in our lives. This is what James is telling us. This means that a clean up has to take place. We need to get rid of all the filth.
Getting rid of the filth we need to humbly accept God's word. If we have heard and read God's how do we respond, do we respond by humbly accepting God's word?

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

James & listen...

"My Dear Brothers & sisters, be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to get angry, Your anger can never make things right in God's sight?" James 1:19-20


It is often said we were given two ears and one mouth for a reason yet so often we speak more.


Listening is skill which we use in every day life


Listening is something we need to do in prayer


If we listen more, we speak less and get angry less


We need so often to speak less and listen afresh to the small voice of God


Our anger will not make us right before God


Rewind back to James

Hoping to dip back into James again over the course of this month in particular with the theme of prayer in mind. To follow old post on James - please follow the label James at the bottom of this post.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Reunderstanding Prayer

I still have this book by Kyle Lake entitled [re] understanding Prayer waiting to be read. But having a rough glance at the book I note that Kyle acknowleges that he is an amateur in prayer. Having read Philip Yancey's book on prayer, he would say the same thing. Writing about prayer, I would say the same, I dont thing I will ever be able to make the claim "I have mastered prayer". We will always go about with our learner plates.

How do we learn? We take time to sit like a babe growing up learning to communicate for the first time.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New year

Happy new year and all the best for 2007.
I now have another blog which will have a more general theme than this blog. I have found over the past couple of months there is one or two trhings I have wanted to post about but dont quite fit into the blog.
This blog will continue with a prayer theme but you are welcome to follow the new blog entitled Lost in Wonder, Lost in worship a theme that I have been look at here over the advent period.

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Wot about 2007?

Interestingly the sermon at church was on time but ended with the word that we need to trust in him this year for he will not fail us!

Saturday, December 30, 2006

wot about 2006?

I think the one word that sums up this year is the word trust. I hope that will not lose sight of this in the new year.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Advent is over but we continue to remember

They say say puppies are for life not just for Christmas: In the Christian expereicence we remember Jesus all year round not just at Christmas. Let me close these set of thoughts that we have had over the December with this line from Matt Redmans song entitled "Befriended":

"Determined, determined now to live this life for you.
You're so worthy my greatest gift would be the least your due"

Lets make this a prayer as we look forward to the breaking in of 2007.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Happy 2nd Birthday Catriona (25th Dec)

Happy Birthday to our daughter who is two on Monday. Doesnt the time fly.
Just came accross this which Morven and I wote after her birth.

"Never say Never!

As we have look forward to the birth of our child, many people would ask questions, many of them were pretty standard! Nearer the end I remember one of the questions being to us both: Is there a time when you wouldn’t like the baby to come? We said that Christmas Day for obvious reasons. Well looking back on it I learn that when you are walking with the Lord you should never say never!
Over the December period, we often reminds ourselves afresh of how the Christ child was born. We will often think of Mary and Joseph who had to prepare for their new arrival. They would have known that the tiny little one who had been born in the stable was one who had come to be God in the flesh.
This is a message, which hit home to us on Christmas day . We received an unexpected Christmas Gift on Christmas Day. Our first child, Catriona Mary was born on the 25th December two weeks early at 7 llbs 9oz. We should have known to have never said never. For we praise God for this gift of new life into our lives and for reminding us afresh of the true meaning of Christmas. We pray that there will be a day when Catriona Mary counts it a privelege to share her birthday with the day that we remember the birth of Jesus. "

Why did Jesus come?

Maybe you have asked this question before or maybe someone has asked you this question. 1 John is not often a book we might hear preached about it in this season of advent. But yet it for me has alot to say about the son of God who came in flesh.
So let me ask myself that question again:
Why did Jesus come?
1 John 3:8b gives us this answer:

"The son of God appeared appeared for this purpose to destroy all the works of the devil"
This is a really cool verse to remind ourselves as we approach the Lord in prayer.
We know this to be true and really give us a clue that the birth of Jesus is only a part of purpose. God is purposes continued to be revealed through his son after the birth. Right throughout his earthly ministry he continued to destroy the work of the devil. The final enemy to be defeated was death. Christ arose!

I came accross these verses within Luke within Zacharius' song, (John's father). It says:

Luke 1:74-75
"To grant that us that we being rescued from the hand of our enemies. might serve him with fear, in holiness and righteousness before him all our days"

Zacharius came to praise the God who had a taste of salvation.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Anna devoted to prayer

Last night was writing here about Anna and just noticed not long after I had posted the verse before that she was a lady devoted to prayer

Luke 2:37b
She never left the temple serving night and day with fastings and prayers.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

I've waited my whole life for this!

Have you spent your whole life waiting for something. The worshippers Simeon and Anna had waited their whole life for the day that Jesus who was their salvation to be born. In fact Simeon was promised that he would tasted death until Jesus the messiah was born.

Anna was a servant of the Lord, a prophetess and notable again for her worship:

Luke 2:38
And at that very moment she came up and began giving thanks to God, and continued to speak Him to all those who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem.

Prayer: Lord give me that real spirit of anticipation as I seek to grow in you and indeed anticpate the 2nd coming.


Following was taken from advent blog (glasgow) and you can view the original here


I’ve been trying to get your attention, but you’ve been distracted.

You need to stop!
stop thinking
stop planning
stop worrying
about presents
about parties
about trimmings
about turkey
about travelling
about Christmas cards
about your gift-list
about your wish-list
about credit cards
about where you’re going shopping after this
none of that compares to the true wonder of this season
“For unto you is born, in the city of David, a Saviour, which is Christ the King.”
Be silent
Be calm
Be still
and know that,
He is God!

Mary Worshipped

Again this title lost in wonder, lost in worship is staying with me this advent. So many of folks in the infant narratives came to worship Jesus.
Mary sang the praises of the God who was able.

Luke 1:46-47
And Mary said:
My Souls exalts the Lord,
And my spirit has rejoiced in God m saviour.

When she heard how the Lord was going to use her, her heart turned to God who is mighty to worship him.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Read Reflect Renew

It is nearly that time of year again. Time when people have a wee bit more time to read reflect and renew. Again prayer is a theme we need to remind ourselves of and to re- understand prayer.
One of the books that I have set aside (if I have the time!!) to read is this book on prayer [RE] UNDERSTANDING PRAYER writing by Kyle Lake. Reading the following link for a review of the book click here. Look forward to gleaning fresh insights from prayer on this book. More to follow on this one!

Sunday, December 10, 2006

prepare your heart

This advent my heart and prayer is that I would be lost in wonder, lost in worship. It is therefore important that I prepare my heart!

The following speak about preparing the way of the Lord:

Isaiah 40:3-5
"Listen! I hear the voice of someone shouting, Make a Highway for our the LORD through the wilderness. Make a straight smooth road through the desert for our God. Fill the valleys and level the hills. Straighten out the curves and the rough spots. Then the glory of the LORD will be revealed and all the people will see it together. The Lord has spoken"

Old Testament prophets often prophesied about this Messiah. They were living in the anticipation of this messiah coming. There was really something to Look forward to. John the Baptist preached about message of repentance and forgiveness but he was not even worthy to tie the straps of Jesus' shoes, the gospel Mark tells us. Why was John the Baptist preaching? To prepare the hearts to welcome the new born King!

My prayer would be that many hearts would be prepared to hear this message. I would pray that this message of Jesus would always burn in my heart.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Gods purposes seen throughout Advent

In number times in this blog, I have reflected that God's purposes work out! Long time before Jesus was born, he was being prohesied about. People were living in real anticipation a messiah who was coming. He came and in new Testament we often see OT scripture quoted to show that God's purposes were being revealed in their midst.
Hopeful Imagination has a post on this theme:

"How good are you at planning ahead? I am not a last minute person. I like to be organised but I have learnedthat carefully laid plans can be altered in a minute by unforeseen circumstances or pressure of work.

This isn't true of God, however, His plans have been laid since before the beginning of the world. His plans are eternal and will come to pass. " to read more click here