Prayers for the Week: Fruit of the Spirit – Self-Control

self-control

Hello everyone, and welcome to today’s Prayers for the Week post. Last week we looked at gentleness, the eighth word that was mentioned as a fruit of the Spirit by the Apostle Paul.  Today, we conclude our series by looking at self-control.  But first, let’s look at our Bible verses again to refresh them in our minds:

22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. ~ Galatians 5:22-23 (ESV)

The past week has shown a definite lack of self-control among the peoples of this world.  Charlottesville, Barcelona, Florida, and countless other locals all have shown that there is a definite lack of self-control in this world.  What is self-control, though, and why is it a fruit of the Spirit as listed in Galatians?

To me, the concept of self-control is to make sure you exercise patience, and ask God for guidance in decisions you need to make.  Self-control is, to me, about disciplining ones self so that it is in tune with what God desires of me, rather than what the world expects of me.  Unfortunately, the events of the past week or so have shown a definite lack of self-control exists among the people of the world.  I think the examples are obvious, and we don’t need to recap them yet one more time.  The ultimate question to me is how are we going to get beyond all of this?

15 For this people’s heart has grown dull, and with their ears they can barely hear, and their eyes they have closed, lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears and understand with their heart and turn, and I would heal them.’ ~ Matthew 13:15 (ESV)

My friends, I’m worried that the words of Jesus, which He quoted from the book of Isaiah some 2,700 years ago, are being played out right before our eyes in the present day and time.  In my eyes, the sad reality is that the majority of the people in this world are marching to the beat of their own drum, or rather, Satan’s drum, and as a result, most of the people’s hearts have hardened.

To me, the only way that the people of this world will be redeemed is if they start praying to God, asking Him to guide them, and putting their complete trust in Him.  Fortunately, I see examples of that every single day.  I see Godly men and women looking to God for guidance.  I see them praying to God, evangelizing to others, I see them asking God’s direction for their lives, for their daily encounters, and I see God responding to our pleas. If you continue reading, and read our prayer requests and praises and pray over them, you will see God’s answer in some of them as well.

Prayer Requests & Praises

  • Amanda starts us off with a desperate plea for prayer for her husband Daniel.  We first started praying for Daniel way back in May of 2013.  But, it’s life threatening serious, people.  Please shower him with all the prayers you can. Here’s what Amanda wrote: We need prayers badly. The biliary drain for my husband is working but not bringing his bilirubin down enough. The doctor says that means the cancer is starting to interfere with the liver function. He suggested my husband go home and be made comfortable but also offered us to try Herceptin (a breast cancer drug) to see if we can beat back the cancer enough to get the liver to function well. My husband is fighting until the last possible moment and is getting Herceptin, fluids and potassium as we speak. Please pray that his body get strong and the Herceptin, & God, get that cancer out of his liver and the rest of his body. I have trouble believing God would have brought him thru all of this to take him now!
  • Stefan wrote for a prayer request for his friend Rob on Wednesday.  Here’s the original request as well as updates: Hey folks, my friend Rob suffered a heart attack Monday and again last night. He’s in surgery right now. Please pray from him!
    • Here’s an update: Update on Rob from his sister:
      We just saw Rob and talked to his doctor and nurses. He is still asleep and intubated (with breathing tube) but the surgery went very well.
      Praise God. Keep praying folks.
    • Another update on Rob — he’s getting better and was transferred from ICU to a regular room! Keep praying, but he’s getting better, thanks everyone!
  • Stephanie has an update on baby Wesley: UPDATE: “After 17 days Wesley opened his eyes!! And he is now 2 pounds!! A long road ahead but, we will take all steps in the right direction.” This is in regards to the post I made a week or so ago.
  • Jodi needs continued prayers for her work situation: OK, a few weeks ago, y’all were so faithful in praying over me as I applied to teach with VIPKid, and I thank you! I did get hired; however, I have still not gotten a single booking! I’m doing everything they say to do to get their attention, but I’m at 23 days now, and still have not taught a single class. I really need to start earning an income, so please continue to pray over this with me. Thank you!
  • Please keep praying for my cousin Barb’s husband, Tim.  Tim’s been fighting cancer for a long time too, about as long as Daniel, and he needs God’s hand on him too.  Please lift up that family, shower them all with as much prayer as you can muster.
  • Please pray for all of the families of those affected in Charlottesville and Barcelona and Florida.
  • Please pray for the upcoming Men’s Study bible study, that it would see phenomenal attendance and that all of us would be brought closer to God, and that we would share that love for God with those we meet in our daily encounters.
  • Lastly, we pray for all of those unspoken prayer requests.  We pray for all of those that are lost and have no direction, and we pray that they would learn who God is and that we would witness it change their lives.

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.

Prayers for the Week – Rejoice

Psalm 118:24

24This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. ~ Psalm 118:24 (ESV)

Hello everyone and welcome to this week’s prayers for the week post.  There’s a lot to rejoice today.  Today is April 19th and not only is it my Grandmother and Grandfather’s wedding anniversary but it’s also the day that our daughter Sophie and all of her classmates profess their faith at Church as they are confirmed. If you’re not sure what it means to be confirmed in the church it’s to step forward and say that you are standing with Jesus. It’s something that they’ve been studying for ten weeks now and what they’re studying is to get the tools they need to be able to withstand the valley’s on their Christian walk. As a parent, Cindy and I are very proud of the steps that Sophie is taking in her life.  She is doing something that neither Cindy nor I ever did, and in many ways, she is showing her Christian Spirit better than I ever did at her age.

As I said, it is also my Grandma and Grandpa’s wedding anniversary.  While they are both gone, I still remember the date — today is their 76th wedding anniversary.  Here are two pictures of them that I think you will enjoy.

Grandma and Sophie Grandpa

Of course, there are things that we are concerned about.  Cindy’s Uncle Ted is getting slowly worse; Cindy’s cousin needs a total knee replacement; my brother-in-law Jerry had to have his knee operated on; and our friend Elisha is facing back surgery.  But, despite all of these things, we still rejoice, because we understand that we know who we can count on to help us through these hard times — Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

My friends, this world is not an easy place to live in.  So many temptations, so much anger and hatred and violence and evil.  If there is ever a time to turn to God, it is in this day and age.  That is why I am so excited and happy for Sophie and her classmates — they are making a life decision that will help them for the rest of their lives!  And for that, my friends, I give thanks and rejoice to the Lord.

What do you have going on in your life that you are rejoicing over?  Let us know, and thanks for stopping by!  Now, please pray with us 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.

Come and See — How God moves Men!

2013StudySignupWithBBQ

Today, I’m taking a moment to talk to you about a Men’s Bible Study that I am participating in called “The Men’s Study”.  This year will be my 4th year participating in the study, and I’ve got to tell you, each year brings me even closer to my Lord and Saviour than the year before.  If you are reading this blog post and live in the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area, and are looking to learn more about our bible study, I strongly urge you to visit The Men’s Study website, sign up for the free dinner on Tuesday, August 13, 2013, and learn more about how your life can be changed for the better!  I believe God is calling to you.  He wants you to spend time in His Word, and learning how you can use those powerful words to help you through the trials and tribulations of life in the world.  He is calling to you — can you hear Him?

I urge you, come and see what the Lord has in store for you.  Come and see how God moves men in The Men’s Study Bible Study!  I hope to see you there!