spiritualsnippets.com

Seeing life's events in the light of God's Word.

Pray for Our Country

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Proverbs 29:2- “When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked rule, the people mourn.”

 

As more and more newscasts are filled with biographical information about candidates and their stands on the issues concerning citizens of our great country, need we even ask if God cares about politics?

There is a lot of talk in the Bible about Kings. There are details regarding lineage, how they came to be Kings, their performance, and so on. Scripture tells us some did what pleased God. Some did “evil in the sight of the Lord.”

As we read, we learn how certain actions led to peace, while others started wars. We learn the difference in how Godly leadership and unholy leadership affected the lives of ordinary people.

Leaders who are humble and submissive to God can bring great blessings upon citizens. If we want our nation to truly have peace and prosperity, we must seek leadership that follows Christian principles.

I cannot imagine God devoting so much of the Old Testament to this subject if it wasn’t important to Him. I think God cares immensely about leaders around the world.

It’s not that long until Americans will again exercise their right to vote. In the days and nights leading up to casting our ballots, we need to pray as never before that God will guide us and that HIS choices for all of the offices will be elected. And, afterward? We need to continue to pray that their decisions and actions will be wise and honorable.

We cannot let up. 

Our prayers are important because our leadership matters… because God will act on behalf of His people if we earnestly seek His will in every circumstance.

Complacency or defeatist attitudes have no place in the lives of Christians. (Remember God’s warning to the church of Laodicea in Revelation that He would rather they would be hot or cold than to be lukewarm? That if they didn’t change, He would spew them out of his mouth?) 

May our pillows be hard and our beds uncomfortable from this day forward if we go to bed without praying for our country. 

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Perfect Peace

 

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Ezra 8:23- “So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and he answered our prayer.”

 

My friend was recently hospitalized. It became apparent at one point, that we might lose her. However, many days (and prayers) later, she rallied. 

She is now on the road to recovery.

But, what if God had not chosen to heal her? Would that have still been an answer to those hundreds, if not thousands, of prayers?

It would not have been the answer we wanted but, yes. It still would have meant that God answered according to His will. Which, as a matter of fact, is how we all prayed. 

We asked for healing, while at the same time, asking for God’s will to be done in her life.

It’s not easy when we pray for God’s will to be done because we are not always going to get the answer that we want. 

Believers in the verse in Ezra were praying for a safe journey for themselves and their children. You may be praying that a loved one would come to know the Lord or that a job offer might be received.

Whether with ayes,” “no,” or “wait,” we can be assured that God will answer according to His good, pleasing, and perfect will.

And, because of that, we can experience His perfect peace. 

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Join The Army

Genesis 21:22– And it came to pass at that time that Abimelech and Phichol, the commander of his army, spoke to Abraham, saying, “God is with you in all that you do.”

 

Bells ringing. Red kettles.

It’s that time of year, isn’t it?

Salvation Army volunteers—outside stores and malls. Rain or shine. Warm or cold.

Whether ignored or embraced, there they are. Faithful to their cause.

I knew little more than the fact that they are a Christian-based organization.

This year, I was determined to find out more.

Here is just a fraction of what I discovered:

  • Founded by William Booth in 1852 in England.
  • Began as a ministry to win the lost multitudes to Christ.
  • Booth started by preaching in the streets of London to the poor, homeless, and hungry.
  • In 1865, he began tent meetings to preach the message of hope and salvation.
  • In 1879, Lt. Eliza Shirley held the first meeting of the Salvation Army in America.
  • Today, the Salvation Army is active in virtually every corner of the world.
  • Most centers hold weekly worship services.
  • Areas of ministry include: prison ministries, adult rehab, veterans services, elderly, combatting human trafficking, and missing persons via international social service.

I had no idea they did all of this, as well as offering residential housing and work opportunities to various individuals and groups.

They are literally an army of individuals whose main goal is GIVING SPIRITUAL DIRECTION TOWARD A PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD AS PROVIDED BY JESUS CHRIST.

I remember, as a child, singing a song in Sunday School about being in the “Lord’s Army”. (I may never ride in the infantry, shoot in the cavalry, shoot the artillery,  but I’m in the Lord’s Army.) These words were followed with a salute.

It wasn’t until years later, when guys I knew were drafted into the U.S. Army, that the concept of God’s Army started coming into focus for me.

Now, more than ever, a vast army of God’s people needs to rise up in prayer and step out in faith. We need to join with other Christians around the world in serving those less fortunate and in proclaiming the Good News of the Gospel to a hurting world.

Fear and unrest dominate newscasts. Violence abounds.

Time is short.

We may not ring a bell.

We may not stand outside the mall beside a donation kettle.

But, we can pray, donate, serve, share the message of hope.

Because, when we do, like Abraham,

God will be with us.

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Lost and Found

Jeremiah 29:13- You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

Some years ago, a friend of mine told me a heartbreaking story. Her daughter and boyfriend had put an ad in the paper, hoping to sell a car. A person from a city about two hours away from them answered the ad, asking that they deliver the car to him, personally, the following weekend. The young couple drove to meet with the prospective buyer, never to be heard from again.

I could hear the anguish in my friend’s voice and I saw the pain on her face as she told of the many years of searching that followed, the sleepless nights, the tears shed. Where could they be? What could have happened?

Finally, a few weeks ago—after thirteen years—the police notified my friends that they believe they have found the person(s) responsible for this crime. As parents, their pain is still overwhelming but they are relieved to have some answers and a measure of closure.

What must it be like to search for a missing child or family member? What happens when hope wains? What is it like to expend energy day after day handing out flyers, searching the streets—the countryside—with no real guarantee of finding a loved one?

Fortunately, God’s Word promises that everyone who seeks Him will find Him. Prayer and reading the scriptures—the Bible—are the places to start. Begin with the book of John. Ask God to help you understand the meaning of His words. Ask a Christian friend to walk alongside you as you begin your search. Find a church that teaches the Word of God and begin attending regularly. Let God speak to you through the songs and the teaching. Talk to the Pastor.

Seek God. You won’t spend years and years of searching, ending in disappointment. You can know God today.

I’m praying for you!

Brenda

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When Temptation Strikes

Matthew 26:41– “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

At one time, my husband and I lived in a house behind a grocery store. Our back fence separated our property from the store’s parking lot. Midmorning, every single day of the year except Christmas and New Year’s, unbelievably good smells from the store’s bakery and deli would waft right into our house!

Needless to say, we were constantly tempted to hop the fence and buy freshly baked bread or tasty rotisserie chicken. When the store did a special promotion, bringing their grills outside to cook hot dogs or brats, it was almost too much to bear!

I recall in the midst of dieting, we would resolve to not go grocery shopping without the other so that we could keep from buying foods from our “forbidden” list.  We also tried to spend time away from home, involved in activities where we might not be tempted to break ranks and give in to our churning stomachs.

Although food is a temptation for lots of us, there are also many things in this life that could potentially lure us into behaviors that are not good for us, such as spending too much time on the computer, gambling or gossiping over the back fence, to name a few.

We have good intentions. We mean to change, but these things seem to have such power over human beings.

Why? Because as the verse above tells us, our flesh is weak. It also tells us what to do about it: WATCH. Be aware of those things that tempt us and those times when we are most vulnerable. Then, try to keep ourselves out of those situations.

But that’s not enough. The most powerful thing we can do is PRAY. Seek God’s guidance and tap into His power of resistance against those things that tempt us. Ask Him to replace that temptation with a desire for something better. And He will because He is faithful, because He keeps His word, because He doesn’t want to see us succumb to temptation.

He want us to be free of those things that bind us. Free to live a victorious life— in Him!

Brenda

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