11For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. 13You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. 14I will be found by you, declares the Lord, and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have driven you, declares the Lord, and I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile. ~ Jeremiah 29:11-14 (ESV)
Hello everyone, and welcome to this week’s prayers for the week post. Today I’m taking a moment to talk to you about why I’m a Christian. It’s something that I feel strongly about, and pray that it may lead you to examine your own reasons for why you are a Christian — or if you aren’t one, to reach out to us and ask any questions you have about how you become one.
When I was a child, my family really didn’t go to church very often. Most of the times we did go to church were for weddings or funerals, so not very often at all. I don’t write that as a way of judging why my parents didn’t take us to church. I write it because to me it shows all the more the plans God has for me, and how He is going to see them through to fulfillment regardless of me.
One of the reasons I’m a Christian is because God’s Word speaks to us today just as it did to others thousands of years ago. Jeremiah recorded the words of God to His people, the Israelites, when they were exiled to Babylon. Although those words were spoken thousands of years ago to a people that was disobedient and ended up in exile, still God tells His people that He hasn’t given up on them, that He will restore them, and it will be because they turned back to Him.
In the same vein, those words are written for us in today’s day. We are often just as disobedient as the Israelites were, and with the state of the world today, you can certainly make an argument that God has turned His back on us. But despite that, God’s promise from yesteryear is very much in evidence today.
When I lost my job at UNC-TV because management decided to outsource to an out of state company two years ago, I really had a sense of fear. How was I going to support my family? How were we going to be able to keep our home? What was going to happen with Sophie’s plans for school? Well, what I know is that the plans I had to accomplish those things really weren’t my plans at all, they were God’s plans. God knew and God knows what we need in our lives.
The short answer to this long-winded discussion is that the reason I’m a Christian is that God provides me and my family with the hope we need each and every day. God knows — and we have learned — that our time on this fallen world is short, and that our real home is Heaven. The hope we have in Jesus is a hope like none other, and it is in that hope that I am a Christian.
Now, please put your hope in Jesus as well, and please pray with me these prayer requests and praises.
Prayer Requests and Praises
- Mikel starts us off with a prayer request: I would ask for your prayers for my husband Bruce. He has some difficult decisions to make at work that not only affect him, but the people that he manages.
- Dennis needs immediate prayers for a family member. Please lift up Dennis and his family today. Thanks!
- Amanda has a prayer request for her husband’s aunt, Diane is her name: My husband’s aunt needs prayers. They have found a mass on her liver and are concerned it is advanced pancreatic cancer. They are currently awaiting a biopsy and further scans.
- Hiro has a prayer request for her father-in-law: Please pray for my Father-in-Law. He is getting surgery on his eyes tomorrow morning. He is worried about losing his sight.
- Lastly, Jo has a prayer request for financial blessings for her family.
Now, please close with us by praying the prayer that Jesus taught His Disciples and us to pray:
Our Father, who art in Heaven,
Hallowed be Thy Name.
Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will be done
On Earth as it is in Heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive those that trespass against us.
Lead us not into temptation
But deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the Kingdom, and Power, and Glory
Forever and ever. Amen.