Prayers for the Week – A Season for everything

season

 

1For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
2 a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
3 a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
4 a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
5 a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6 a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
7 a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
8 a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace. ~ Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (ESV)

Hello everyone, and thank you for joining with us on our weekly prayers for the week post.  As we learn in the book of Ecclesiastes, there is a season for all things in God’s plan.  We know that there is a time to live, and a time to die.  There is a time to break down, and a time to build up. There is a time for everything.

This week has been an extremely hard one for so many of us, and you will hear all about them in our prayer requests and praises that we will lift up further down.  Starting us off, though, I want to take a moment and talk about Daniel, the young man that we have been lifting up in prayer for over four years.  This past Tuesday, though, the Lord called Daniel home.  We remember Daniel with love, even though we have never met him, and we celebrate the life he lived despite being afflicted with such a hard illness.  He met that illness head on, and never wavered in his love of the Lord because of it.  He leaves behind his wife Amanda and daughter Cate, and we lift them up every day for God’s Strength, Peace, Comfort, and Love to surround them.

The prayers for Amanda and Cate are just the beginning, so please continue reading with us as we carry on our Prayer Requests and Praises below.

Prayer Requests & Praises

  • Please pray for all of those in the path of Hurricane Irma, Jose, and Katia, and for all of those that have already faced the wrath of these storms.  Please pray as well for all of those that had to leave their homes, and for any affected in any way from the storms.
    • Paul has a prayer request: My daughter, Patricia, is in the West Palm Beach area and is staying to ride out the storm. There is no gas and roads are packed. Please keep her and her friends in your prayers.
    • Please pray for Jodi, who is in the path, and my cousin James over in Tampa.
    • Please pray for all of my friends who live in Florida who had to stay.
    • Please keep “Jeff in Cape Coral, FL” in your Prayers….for whatever reason, he is not willing to share more than that. His sister, Diane, is a good friend of mine in MN….her brother is going to “ride this out” – he is on the west side of the point of FL!
  • Please continue praying for my cousin Barb and her husband Tim for healing for his cancer.
  • Please continue praying for my cousin Deb and her husband Donnie for healing from his stomach issues.
  • Hayden has a prayer request for his Mom: I’d appreciate prayers for my mom. She is having her second cornea replacement surgery this am due to the fact her body didn’t accept the first one about 5 weeks ago. She’s needing the surgery due to her chemo and the chemo is what kept the first one from working. She’s in remission from her bone cancer but now is dealing with side effects from the chemo. Please remember her and pray that this transplant works. Thank you all.
  • Please pray for all of the wildfires — in Montana, Oregon, California, and anywhere I’ve missed.  Please pray that the fires would be put out quickly and that no loss of life or additional damage would be inflicted.
  • Hey everyone, please include my friend Donna in your prayers. She suffers from vertigo and is having a hard time right now. Thanks!
  • Please continue to pray for Karen’s sister-in-law.  She didn’t get the job she was hoping to get, so please keep praying for the right job for her to arrive. Thank you!
  • Jodi has a prayer request: My friend Kim’s best friend Shanna passed away last night. Thank you for praying for her during her illness. Please continue prayers for her family!
  • Sheila has a prayer request: Please pray for all of the people affected by the earthquake in Guatemala and Mexico.
  • As always, pray for those that don’t know what to pray for, and pray for those that are lost.  Pray for those that don’t know the words to speak, but don’t worry — because God knows what we need even when we can’t put it to words.

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.

 

Faith

My Word for 2016 is…

Word for 2016

Image source ©Love Our Crazy Life

My Word for 2016 is…

By Mike Ellis.

My friend Becca from Love Our Crazy Life has a great way to ring in the year.  Rather than make a lot of resolutions that may or may not be able to be met, she takes a word and uses that to drive her through the year.  You can click over to read what Becca’s word is, and I liked it so much that I decided to embrace a word of my own for this year.  More about that in a little bit.

The calendar year 2015 was one of the hardest I think I’ve ever had to endure, with so much sorrow and loss.  It felt like wave after wave of negativity was invading our lives, and that there would never be an end to it.  It came to a head on October 31, when I lost my job at UNC-TV, the place I had worked at for over 21 years.

Word for 2016

My Word for 2016 is FAITH.

So, after all of that, the word that I am embracing this year is the word that I should embrace each and every year.  That word, my friends, is FAITH.

Faith can move mountains, faith can drive us to great and better things.  Faith, quite simply, opens up our hearts, our minds, our soul, to the understanding that all things are possible through Him that gives me strength.  I am sorry to God and my family, that at times during last year my Faith has been lacking.  I am sure that many of you would say that is understandable, especially with all of the things that our family endured this year.  However, to me, that is not a good excuse.  To me, the realization I should have had all the time is that this isn’t about me, that all I need to do is turn it over to God, and He will take care of things.  To my thinking, employing your Faith in God opens up the possibilities, and the next thing you know, God is opening doors for you that He hadn’t shown to you before; that is the importance of Faith.

So to all my readers, all of my friends, all of my family, I hope you pay this forward.  Find a word, any word (hopefully one that is full of positive energy), and make it your word for 2016.  Use that word to drive your attitude, your direction, to help you with your outlook on life.  I think this will be helpful for me, and I think it will be helpful for you as well.

24Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, 25to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen. ~ Jude 1:24-25 (ESV)

Prayers for the Week – Praying for Dennis

philippians-4-vs-6-7

6do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 4:6-7 (ESV)

My friends, on this past Wednesday, my co-worker and friend Dennis turned 48 years old.  During that day, he started having heart problems, and towards the end of that day, he had a full blown heart attack.  When that happened, the incredible people that work with me sprang into action.  911 was called and staff members stood by looking for the medical teams to arrive.  Others grabbed our AED at work and put it to use, probably saving Dennis’ life in the process.  Still others assisted in ways that I can’t even imagine, and by the grace of God and all of the help by those incredible people, Dennis made it to the hospital okay.  He still wasn’t out of the woods, though, and throughout the night, myself and others prayed for Dennis, lifting up our petitions to God, and doing our best to have a positive outlook.  We learned that the medical team took incredible efforts to help Dennis, putting him in an induced coma so his body could calm down, and doing other things that I can only begin to imagine.

The next day, those of us that came into work worried about what might have happened overnight learned that things are getting better, even if it is slowly.  One of our staff, Vicki, organized an optional prayer for anyone that wanted to join her — there were at least 30 people that gathered around and we were praying for Dennis.  The business at work had to continue, but suddenly, the mood in the building was different.  For some weeks, I’ve felt like the mood in the building was one of fear — fear for those that are leaving, uncertainty over those that are staying behind, wondering what is next, and so forth.  But suddenly, in the span of a few hours, the mood in the building became one of camaraderie — Dennis was in trouble, and people across the building, in jobs that didn’t even work that closely with him, were pitching in to do things for him and to help him.  We communicated with his girlfriend, we stopped by to make sure she was okay, we delivered things for him that were in his office that she needed, we took care of his car, and the list goes on and on.  Through it all, the work was still progressing — people still had their jobs to do — but instead of an underlying fear of what was happening to us in our jobs, the fear, at least in my mind and heart, anyway, that fear turned to resolve that we were going to see Dennis through this, with God’s help.

At this point, Dennis is still fighting, and he still needs our prayers.  If you can, please pray with me:

Heavenly Father, we know that Your servant Dennis is still fighting for his life.  We know that You are hearing our prayers, and that through You nothing is impossible.  You are the God of second chances, Lord, and we know that You have Dennis close to you while he fights.  Lord, show the world what You can do, and if it is in Your Will, show the world the miracle of Dennis’ heart healing.  We also ask that You let Your Peace, Comfort, and Strength descend to Dennis’ family and friends so that we may wait on Your Miracle to occur for Dennis.  We ask these things in the name of Your Son Jesus with Thanksgiving!  Amen.

Thank you all for praying for Dennis with me.  Now, please pray for these other requests we have this week:

  • Kelli’s husband has some health concerns, please pray for his bulging disc that it would be healed.
  • Also please pray for Kelli’s daughter in her new job, pray for her stamina as she adapts to working on her feet for 8 hours a day.
  • Pam has an unknown prayer request, please pray for her.
  • Josie’s husband is battling cancer, and it is very serious.  Please pray for Josie, her husband, and their two sons.
  • My Brother in Christ Don passed away this week.  Please pray for his family, for their Peace, Comfort, and Strength in the days, weeks, and months ahead as they struggle in his loss.
  • Please pray for Mark, who had his shoulder surgery this week.  Please pray for his healing, and for Peace, Comfort, and Strength for him and his wife Jan.

Now, please pray with me the prayer that Jesus taught His Disciples 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 who trespass against us.
Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the Kingdom, and the Power, and the Glory forever and ever. Amen.

Prayers for the Week – Wonderfully Made

Psalm 139:14

14I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. ~ Psalm 139:14 (ESV)

Hello my friends, and welcome to this week’s Prayers for the Week post.  This week, we’re focusing on how God has created us.  Most of our prayer requests revolve around things that our Brothers and Sisters-in-Christ are going through, so it’s important to remember that God made us.  Also, I think it is important to remember that God knows us all, even if we aren’t taking the time to know Him in return, and that He has plans for us.  Let’s remember the wonderful verse to be found in Jeremiah 29:11 in both picture in text:

Jeremiah 29:11

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. ~ Jeremiah 29:11 (ESV)

My friends, we are human, and many times we don’t know why things happen to those we love.  Why does my Mom have breast cancer?  Why does Cindy’s Aunt Carol have breast cancer?  Why do other people we know have such serious illnesses?  We don’t know why.  What I know, though, is that it is in times like this that we must turn to God for the support we need.  Our strength is nothing — the strength I have is all because of God.  If you are struggling, if you are hurting, if you are scared or lonely or afraid, I urge you to give your fears up to God.  He will care for you, He longs for you to turn to Him.  He will give you Peace, but you need to ask Him for it.  Now, please read along and pray with us for the rest of our Prayer Requests and Praises.

Prayer Requests and Praises…

  • Please pray for my friend Janice. She has been undergoing a huge assortment of tests, and today found out that her illness is Graves Disease. Please pray for her recovery, treatment, Peace, Comfort, Strength, and her medical team as they work on beating this disease.
  • My friend Jodi has a prayer request for us. Here is what she wrote:Can you please add my friend Laura to your prayer list this week? Her brother Todd, to whom she’s always been extremely close, has been fighting cancer. They learned yesterday it has spread to his brain. He has been sent home with hospice care. Todd is Laura’s son’s favorite uncle, and this is very hard on him too (Sam, age 9). Thank you!Please pray with me:

    Heavenly Father, we hear daily of struggles that people are going through with that horrific disease — cancer. We really are at a loss to understand how these things invade the lives of Your people, but we also know that You have a plan for all of us. We take heart in Your Words from the book of Jeremiah: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” So we know that, despite the disease that Todd is fighting, we know that his life has a purpose, and it is a purpose that You have written for him. Please be with Todd, with his sister Laura, with her son Sam, and with all of their family. Please give Todd the Peace, the Strength, the Comfort, the Love that he needs. Please be with all of them and enfold them in Your Loving embrace so that they would know You are with them. Also, Lord, if it is Your Will, Lord, we pray for healing for Todd. Show us Your Power, Your Glory, and show us that all the medicine in the world means nothing when compared to what You can do. We ask all of these things in the wonderful name of Your Son Jesus with Thanksgiving. Amen

  • Please continue to pray for my Mom, Ellen, who has breast cancer.  She had some tests done, and it cleared up some things that they needed to know, so that was good news.  Thanks!
  • Please pray for Cindy’s Aunt Carol.  She has been fighting breast cancer for a long time now, and is doing well, but when she gets her treatments it wears her out for a day or two, so please pray for her strength during these treatments.
  • Please pray for my sister Robin — she starts her new job on Monday!  Please pray that she would be the light in her classroom that her students need, and that this experience is everything that she hopes it is and then some!
  • Please give great Praise to God for Nora, the newborn daughter of friends of mine.  She was born on the 5th, and all the family is doing well, so please give praise to God for all of that!
  • Please pray for the recovery of my friend Elise.  She had successful surgery and is now back home and is recovering.  Please pray that she would have great healing and that her family can rest easily from now on out!  Please pray for Elise, her husband Randy, and their two wonderful children.  Thanks!

If you have a prayer request, please do not hesitate to leave it with us as a comment.  We pray for all of you, and if you need prayers, we are here for you.  Thank you all for praying for these requests!  Now, please close with me by praying the prayer that Jesus taught His Disciples to pray:

Our Father, who art in Heaven,
Hallowed by 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 who trespass against us.
Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the Kingdom, and the Power, and the Glory forever and ever.

Prayers for the Week – Making Sense of it all

Proverbs 19:21

Hello everyone, and welcome to this week’s Prayers for the Week post. Today we’re going to talk about how hard it can be making sense of it all, all the bad that has happened in our lives, all the things that have gone wrong.  In some cases, even making sense of the good things that have happened too is necessary.  For today’s verse, I’m sharing with you a verse from the book of Proverbs:

21 Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand. ~ Proverbs 19:21 (ESV)

As you will see when you read our prayer requests, the list of people needing prayers has increased greatly over the last couple of weeks.  There are people all over the world that are suffering, and unfortunately, the suffering will continue until Jesus arrives back on earth in the 2nd coming.  The key, though, is that despite what is happening in our lives — whether it be good or bad — our focus needs to be fixed entirely on Jesus.  He is our rock, our salvation; He is our answer to prayer; He will lead us through trials; He is our Shepherd, and we are His sheep — where He leads, we should follow.  Do you remember two of my favorite Bible verses?  Well, in case you’ve forgotten, here they are again, with a third one thrown in that is becoming a favorite as well:

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. ~ Jeremiah 29:11 (ESV)

33I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” ~ John 16:33 (ESV)

13I can do all things through him who strengthens me. ~ Philippians 4:13 (ESV)

In those three verses, we have the Promise of God, the Assurance of Jesus, and the reminder that we, as lowly and full of sin as we are, that nothing can stand in our way, as long as we call on God to help us through those days.  Such simple verses, yet so packed with love.

So, my friends, as you read our prayer requests, and lift up to God our praises, remember, nothing is to small for God, nothing is too trivial, and nothing is to great, either, for God; He wants us to give to him all of the cares, all of the worries, He wants us to turn them over to Him, turn them over and not pull them back to us.

Continued prayers for those we mentioned last week in our prayer post, along with these new requests:

Prayers for Health

  • For Elisha’s blood pressure and stress test
  • For Elisha’s sister Nora, who had neck surgery
  • For Rebecca, who has shoulder issues and likely needs surgery
  • For our old neighbor Anne, who had a stroke and is recuperating
  • For Erin’s friend, whose child is sick, prayers for healing as well as Peace
  • For Casey, who battles Lyme Disease and migraine headaches.
  • For Ginger’s Dad, who is fighting brain lesions.

Prayers for Jobs

  • For Josalynne, who has finished school and is now applying for jobs.
  • For Mitchell, who had a job with prospects for another, but was suddenly told he wasn’t needed with no notice, and now no jobs.

Prayers for Peace

  • For Elisha’s Mom and family — his Mom just lost her sister Mary.
  • For Jodi’s niece, who is being stalked.  She is 24 years old, please pray for her Peace, but also for this to stop.
  • For the family of Mary Alice Reason, who passed away suddenly without warning.
  • For the families of Alison and Adam, who were shot and killed on TV — and for the families of all of those that are lost that we don’t hear about on TV.

Prayers for the Enemy

  • Prayers for the shooter.  As hard as it is to pray for someone who commits evil on us, it is a sign of a true Christian to do so.  God will help you through these prayers.

Prayers for the Lost

  • For those that have passed away.
  • For those that do not know Jesus as their Lord and Savior.

Prayers for Finances

  • Continued prayers for those who are in financial difficulty, whomever they may be, and wherever they are.  Lord, please be with them.

Praises!

  • Glory to God for Don’s wife Vallery, who is approaching five years cancer free!
  • For Stephanie, who was offered a job!
  • For my friend Shirley, who thought of me even when she didn’t need to!
  • For Monica, who felt led by the Holy Spirit to reach out to me.
  • For Hardin, who called me about being an assistant leader in the Men’s Study.
  • For God, who put it on my heart to accept that calling
  • For all of you, who take time each week to read and pray with us!

Anonymous Prayers

  • For Frances
  • For Early

Please pray with me:

Heavenly Father, You hear our cries, You see our needs, and You listen to our Hearts.  Lord, thank you for being our God, for helping us day in and day out, for hearing us through thick and thin.  Thank you for Your promises, for Your Son Jesus, and for all that You have given to us, and all that You will do in the future.  Now, Lord, hear our prayer, as we pray the prayer that Jesus taught 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 who trespass against us.
Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the Kingdom, and the Power, and the Glory forever and ever. Amen.

Thank you all for reading with us this week, and remember to let us know what you need praying over, so we can lift you up as you lift us up.  Thank you, and God Bless You.