Giving Thanks to the Father

Colossians 1:12-14 NIV
“and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he love, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”

And giving joyful thanks to the Father….
“Glorify the LORD with me; let us exalt his name together.” (Psalm 34:3) As we prepare to enter the month of November our focus shifts to the holiday season which kicks off with Thanksgiving Day. Thanksgiving is a time set aside to spend with family and to reflect on various aspects of our life that we are thankful for. Matthew 6:33 says “seek first his kingdom and his righteousness.” As we prepare to enter a season of thanks let’s pause to first give joyful thanks to our Heavenly Father for all that He has done for us at the cross and to reflect on benefits of salvation.

Who has qualified you…
We are thankful because our Heavenly Father has qualified us. Salvation is the work of our Heavenly Father through Jesus Christ death on the cross. “For God so loved the world (He loved you and me enough) that he gave his one and only Son.” (John 3:16a) “For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh.” ( Romans 8:3)

To share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light
We are thankful because we share in God’s inheritance. When we receive Christ as our Lord and savior we become His children, His holy people. “That whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16b) “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” (1 Peter 2:9) God’s kingdom represents light and as believers we have a place in God’s kingdom.

For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness
We are thankful because God has rescued us from darkness. The dominion of darkness is Satan. At the cross Satan was defeated (John 16:11) and the power of sin that he had over us before we received Christ as our Lord and Savior was condemned. As believers we are not perfect but through the power of salvation we have the power to be led by the spirit and not by the flesh, our sinful ways. If you find yourself struggling in areas seek God to deliver you from them. “You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh. So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.” (Galatians 13,16)

And brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves.
We are thankful because we have a seat in the heavenly kingdom through the promises of eternal life (John 3:16). “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light” (Ephesians 5:8) “The kingdom of God is in your midst.” (Luke 17:21b) “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.” (Revelation 11:15)

In whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins
We are thankful because at the cross we have redemption and the forgiveness of sins. “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace.” (Ephesians 1:7)

If you are a believer and have accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, then these are all promises and benefits of your salvation to rejoice over. If you do not know Christ as your Lord and savior and would like to receive Him, then click here to see how to receive the free gift of salvation. Be encouraged!

Prayer: Heavenly Father we give joyful thanks for the gift of salvation. We praise you for being our Heavenly Father and Lord over our life. We thank you for sending your only son, Jesus, on the Christ to die for our sins and to place us in the position to be in relationship with you through our salvation. We pray for our unsaved family members and friends and we pray for those who have strayed away from you that they will one day come back to the kingdom of light. Help us to know you more and give us guidance and strength to be the light in a dark world and to draw souls to you. We ask these things in your son Jesus name. Amen

~Written by Felicia McKnight~

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LIVE!

Happy Birthday Felicia!

Happy Birthday Felicia!

Ezekiel 16:6
“Then I passed by and saw you kicking about in your blood, and as you lay here in your blood I said to you, “LIVE”! I made you grow like a plant of the field. You grew up and developed and became the most beautiful of jewels.”

LIVE!
On this day last year I recall doing what I do every year on October 23rd. After thanking God for another year I typically will reflect on what transpired the last 365 days and pray on what I hope for on the next 365 days. A year ago I had no clue of the whirl wind my life was about to take or that it would be the last time Aunt Glenda would call to wish me a Happy Birthday.

Yep, you guessed it….today is my birthday! As I reflect on the past 365 days I see myself as the baby the writer refers to. I was that person having to deal with the unpleasant blows that life brings. In all of the darkness and the pain God reminded me to “LIVE!” By definition live means to have life or to continue to have life. During my season God sent earthly angels to keep me encouraged. They prayed and pointed me back to scriptures that dealt with my current circumstances. God used them as messengers to give me godly counsel. Their actions were telling me to “LIVE!” and that all was not over or lost.

“I made you grow like a plant….”
I learned a valuable life lesson over the past 365 days. Trials have a purpose. As the class I am taking refers to it, my nest was being stirred. For me the nest stirring caused me to grow spiritually. I read more scripture, watched more sermons, and prayed like I’ve never prayed before. I did what I had to do to LIVE! My seasons stirred up spiritual growth. My trials brought about things God wanted to accomplish in my life. They lead me to having to jump on God’s agenda and not my own

“You grew up and developed and became the most beautiful of jewels.”
In a recent sermon that I heard the Pastor informed us that “God was about to do something supernatural in someone’s life that we know that it might increase our faith.” Today I declare I am that testimony to you. One of the jewels birthed from the stirring is Feevotionals. My weekly devotions are a testimony that what looked like a mess in the beginning of the year has developed into the most beautiful of jewels. God is not a God of one blessing, but many blessings as doors (yes, plural) have swung open in my life. Today is truly a happy birthday as I reflect on God’s powerful glory being revealed in my personal life. I love the words to Whitney Houston’s song, “I didn’t know my own strength”:

“I didn’t know my own strength
And I crashed down and I tumbled, but I did not crumble
I got through all the pain
I didn’t know my own strength
Survived my darkest hour, my faith kept me alive
I picked myself back up, hold my head up high
I was not built to break
I didn’t know my own strength
Found hope in my heart
I found the light to life my way out of the dark
Found all that I need here inside of me”
~Whitney Houston

For those of you that find yourself in that whirlwind of life right now and your nest has been stirred….if you are in a place of darkness….if you don’t know why all of this is happening to you…I want to remind you there is a purpose in your season. Continue to pray, stand on God’s promises, and know that it is all working for your good! When you come out you are going to look back and realize how strong of a person you really are as you breathe a sigh of relief in your survival. This is only a season and all of us who have been called by God will have one. As I gladly say good-bye to one chapter in my life and gracefully strut my way into a new chapter I say to you “LIVE!” You were not built to break. Be blessed and encouraged!

Prayer:
Lord, today I’m rejoicing and thanking you for another year of life. Thank you for every trial and every storm that occurred over the past 365 days. Thank you that all of the hurt, all of the pain, all of the darkness had a greater purpose so that I can pour into my amazing followers to keep them encouraged and to remind them to LIVE! Bless every soul reading this message and grant them all that they stand in need of. Amen.

~Written by Felicia McKnight~

Song: Whitney Houston – “I Didn’t Know My Own Strength” (Click Here)

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Happy Monday!

Psalm 118:25 NIV
This is the day the LORD has made;
We will rejoice and be glad in it.

Happy Monday!
No, you are not confused. Today is a special edition of Feevotionals delivered to you on MONDAY instead of Wednesday! Monday for most of us represents the end of a weekend and the beginning of a new work week. I have been guilty right along with the rest of you of dreading Monday. Especially if it follows a busy, event filled weekend. We all desire that one extra day of rest that we prefer to have on Monday! God convicted my attitude last year on one of my dreaded Mondays. As I hit the alarm and complained about wishing I had one more day of rest I proceeded to my morning prayer routine. Guess who I was praying for? Yes, my unemployed friend. As I was praying it dawned on me that I was sitting there dreading to go to work and I was praying for someone who was hoping and praying for the opportunity to rise and shine on Monday for work. That gave me a quick attitude adjustment! Since then I rejoice on Mondays just as I do any other day. If you really think about it Monday is really just another day in the week. It is another 24 hours that God has given you. Monday is another day to rejoice that God woke you up and to praise Him for the blessings that followed you to another day. If you are breathing, then that is already a blessing to count on Monday. If you are headed to work that is another blessing to count. Remember there is somebody somewhere praying for God to bless them with the opportunity to go to work on Monday. There is somebody somewhere who didn’t get to see another Monday. As you go about your day today and someone mentions Monday in a negative way, then please do me a favor and forward them this e-mail. When next Monday rolls around wake up rejoicing and singing “This is the MONDAY the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.” (Psalm 118:25) Happy Monday! Be blessed and encouraged!

Prayer
Thank you Lord that this is the Monday that you have made. We will rejoice and be glad about it! We thank you for waking us up this morning and starting us on our way. We thank you for every blessing that followed us from Sunday to today. Today we pray that we would be transformed by the renewing of our minds as we see Monday as a blessing and not a burden. We praise you that your goodness, mercy and unfailing love follow us all the days of our life and they are renewed every day including Monday. Forgive us all for taking your grace for granted and complaining about the blessings you have given us. Help us to be a beacon of light to another soul today as we all rejoice and remain glad on Monday! Amen

~Written by Felicia McKnight~

“Hope” for a Cure

In loving memory of my Aunt, Catherine “Sylvia” Williams, a breast cancer survivor, a cancer fighter, and a heavenly conqueror that I’m sure I’ll see again in heaven one day.

Luke 8:43 NLT
A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding, and she could find no cure.

“Hope” for a Cure
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month. It is an awareness that is difficult not to notice because everything everywhere turns the color pink in October. This month is set aside to make people aware of the disease, to remind people to get their check-ups, to fund raise for a cure and a cause, to remember those we’ve lost to the disease, to celebrate those that survived, and to offer hope to those currently diagnosed with breast cancer. Breast Cancer is an equal opportunity disease. It does not discriminate against color, race, religion, or gender. Breast Cancer Awareness month is also a month that symbolizes hope as we see the various fundraising and awareness activities take place across the country.

Today we look at the life of a lady by the name of A Woman with the Issue of Blood. Since I am the author of this devotion I’d like to exercise my rights to nickname her “Hope”. “Hope” was diagnosed with bleeding or in modern day medical terms she was hemorrhaging. In her days she was considered socially unclean therefore this diagnosis created a hard ship for her and her family if she had any. If I can use my sanctified imagination she probably used up all of her money going from one doctor to the next paying one co-pay and deductible after another, a second and third and fourth opion to be told “I’m sorry mam, we have no cure.”

Fortunately for “Hope” she didn’t settle with this diagnosis. She knew something many of us don’t realize. She knew hope meant there is an expected end and she sought after that end with her faith. “Hope” was probably watching one of the Christian stations one day and seen the commercials that a Master Healer by the name of Jesus was coming through town healing the sick and demon-possessed and raising the dead. “Hope” knew that what was impossible for man was possible with God (Luke 18:27), so she had hope for a cure to her diagnosis. “Hope” set out to be amongst the crowds. She pressed her way through the crowds. She knew she didn’t need hands laid on her, she didn’t need special water, she didn’t have to order a special healing cloth and she didn’t have to stand in the $1,000 line to receive what she has waited to receive for twelve years. “Hope” knew that if she could just connect with the source of healing, Jesus, by faith there was a great possibility she too could be healed.

“Hope” received just what she hoped and prayed for so long, an instant healing after twelve years of being told “there is no cure”(Luke 8:47). When she touched the hem of Jesus garment there was a power exchanged so powerful that it knocked her down trembling. As a result of that exchange she was healed by faith. “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.” (Luke 8:48)

When someone receives a serious or terminal health diagnosis I’m sure there are so many questions that go through their mind: Why me? What Next? How do I get through this? How long will I have to suffer? What will this do to my family? Will I live or will I die? What do you do when you have a diagnosis and no cure? The answer is you continue to hope. “Hope’s” outcome is what many of us pray and hope for, but it will not be everyone’s outcome. Sometimes healing comes on the other side of heaven with the gift of eternal life. (John 3:16) I have had the experience of watching three of my terminally ill family members take their last breath and transition away from this earth. Like many of you I hoped and prayed that my Grandmother, Aunt Sylvia, and Aunt Glenda would be physically healed on this side of heaven. Through each experience I learned about another hope that God has given us through his promise of eternal life. I learned that although they may not be healed for our natural eyes to see, that God has a promise of hope that with eternal life there is a place for eternity where there is no more sickness and no more pain. “God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and death shall be no more, neither shall there be anguish (sorrow and mourning) nor grief nor pain any more, for the old conditions and the former order of things have passed away.” (Revelation 21:4 Amplified)

The best hope we can offer any person with a disease is the promises of God and to ensure that they have received Christ as their Lord and savior. No one can answer why one person is healed sooner than the other. No one can answer why they were picked to bare the disease. No one can answer why one person is healed and the other had to die. These are only answers God has. However the answers He has given us are in His word, the Bible. God has given us hope for peace, comfort, strength, grace, and mercy through the journey of sickness along with so many others.

Today I am not encouraging anyone to give up hope for healing in the natural. Continue to think as “Hope” thought. I believe “Hope” was going to keep hoping for a cure until it was time for her to leave this earth. She had great faith. Keep praying and believing in God’s power for you or your loved ones. Stand on God’s word regarding healing. Today I just want to encourage you that when you hope for a cure that healing can take place in the earthly realm as well as the heavenly realm. If your loved one does not receive healing on earth do not be discouraged that God didn’t fulfill a promise. Be encouraged that by faith they are walking around heaven and the promises of Revelation 21:4 are fulfilled through salvation with the promise of eternal life. Be blessed and encouraged on today!

Prayer
Heavenly father we thank you today for your healing powers. Thank you that you have the power to heal in the natural realm and you have the power to heal in the heavenly realm. Today we pray for all those who are terminally ill as well as their family, friends, and loved ones. Only you know what the outcome will be. No words can ever take away the hurt one feels when they are diagnosed with a disease or when their loved one passes away, so we entrust these individuals to you to give them the peace, comfort, and strength as only you know how. Lord as we go through this month of October, breast cancer awareness month, we do so with hope that there will be a cure for this disease. Lord, we recognize that there are so many other cancers that need a cure, AIDS needs a cure, and other diseases that are too many to name. We pray for the researchers that are working diligently to find cures to these various diseases and pray that you would give them the wisdom and knowledge that leads to a cure. Ultimately in all situations we pray your perfect will to be done. In Jesus name. Amen.

~Written by Felicia McKnight~

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The Benefits Package

Psalm 1:1-3, 6 NIV
Blessed is the one
who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
or sit in the company of mockers,
but whose delight is in the law of the LORD,
and who meditates on his law day and night.
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—
whatever they do prospers.
For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked leads to destruction.

The Benefits Package
Seeking new employment can be just as time consuming as having an actual job, however once employed it can be rewarding. Prior to obtaining employment there is some work the job seeker has to do. The job seeker has to seek out employment opportunities, interview for the job, and perform well on the interview. If the employer is satisfied then the job offer is extended. The job seeker accepts the new salary and the benefits package. The beauty with some jobs is there are added perks that come along with working for that company that you can only enjoy after you are hired. Likewise with God there are a few things we must do to enjoy some of the added perks of being in the kingdom of God.

First, be careful at the water cooler. The water cooler is another term for “the place where everyone hangs out and gossips.” It is so easy to get caught up at the water cooler. In the morning most individuals go to get their morning beverage and possibly heat their breakfast. One individual says “Good Morning”, and that one gesture can easily lead to “did you hear?” The next thing you know you are side tracked and talking about meaningless subjects. As Christians we have to be extremely careful with who we talk to and who we keep company with. It’s OK for us to engage with all individuals, because God wants us to be salt and light. However, we have to be careful not to hang around those who could easily draw us to a place we don’t need to go. I think of some of my friends who are educators. Some of them can’t be seen with their school paraphernalia on if they are at happy hour because they are representing the school. We have to be careful with our words, thoughts, and actions because someone is always watching how we are representing Christ. We have to be careful where we seek advice from. God has given us an amazing gift, the Holy Spirit, to help us discern if the advice we receive can help us go the direction God would have us to go or not. Ultimately God’s word is the best counsel, but when seeking advice it’s best to ask God to lead you to the right person to talk to. When we seek godly counsel from a friend, mentor or family member we position ourselves to receive godly advice in a manner we may not have seen on our own.

Second, we have to maintain our continuing education. For individuals with certain certifications and licenses continuing education is required to maintain that certification or license. In the Kingdom of God He instructs us to delight in His word and to meditate on it day and night. (verse 2) To delight in something means you have to have a pleasure in doing it. When we spend time with people we like we get to know them and look forward to other opportunities to spend with them. God wants you to enjoy reading His word. When you are reading God’s word you are spending time with Him and getting to know more about Him and His character. If you have a hunger for God, then you will delight in spending time with Him.

As you spend time with God He wants you to meditate on His word. This simply means you ponder on what you read. You think about it. You let it marinate in your soul and determine what it is God is speaking to you. Have you ever had a wise conversation with someone and they said something powerful that stuck with you all day? It may have been life transforming or as Oprah would call it, an “ah-ha moment.” Every chance you get you find yourself thinking about what that person said and how it hit home with your situation. This is exactly what meditating on God’s word is. “For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.” (Hebrews 4:12) If you dwell on the word long enough something about it should speak life into your soul.

Once we accomplish the water cooler and continuing education we are now ready for the added perks in the kingdom of God. Psalm 1 teaches us three benefits of righteous living.

First, you can experience Employee Day at the Beach. “That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season.” (Psalm 1:3a) Every year I try my best to have a beach vacation. This year was the first one where I actually did nothing but sit out at the beach for four to six hours a day every day of my trip. I just sat there and observed God’s creation. There were no cares in the world. No matter what was going on the ocean was still a beautiful blue ocean, the sky was still a beautiful blue sky, the sand was still a tan colored sand. If a hurricane comes nothing about these things will change and when the storm is over they will still be the ocean, the sky, and the sand settled where they are supposed to be. Likewise this is how we are as a tree planted by a stream of water. A tree in water is connected to it’s source that is constantly feeding it what it needs. No matter what happens to the tree it will still be a tree and it is connected to the source. As long as you are meditating on God’s word as verse 2 instructed you, then you are always connected to the source. No matter what happens to you in life you have your source, the word of God, to stand on. As you stand on the word and meditate on it your inner man is being renewed each day and you should be bearing fruit: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23)

Secondly, there is a return on your investments. Psalm 1:3b says “and whose leaf does not wither—whatever they do prospers.” Everyone in my family has a green thumb except for me. I manage to kill even the plants that are not supposed to die as they go long periods of time without water. I am so busy I just forget to water them until I see a brown leaf on my floor. We are like the plants. We have to constantly stay watered by the word of God. As Hebrews 4:12 told us earlier it brings life. When you spend time in the word, and you are becoming more like God and learning about him. You stay fresh just like a watered plant. As a result of your investment, time in God’s word, great things should prosper in your life. Even when things aren’t looking bright “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)

Finally, there are security benefits. “For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked leads to destruction.” (Psalm 1:6) In all that you do and in all that you go through the Lord is watching over you. Psalm 91:1 reminds us “whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.” I think about celebrities and their large security entourage that follow them wherever they go. There should be no excuse for a fan or any person to harm the celebrity because of the team they have surrounding them. When a fan attempts to come at the celebrity the security personnel quickly jumps in front of the celebrity and blocks the attack that was about to take place. Likewise when we delight in God we are resting in God and His presence. He is a place of safety. He has everything under control. You have no reason to worry when evil people come at you with their schemes and lies. Their attempts will not prosper (Isaiah 54:17) and in time their ways will lead to their own destruction so leave those individuals to God to do what he does best, protect you.

You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.” (James 2:24) These are just a few of the amazing perks to being in the kingdom of God. However, to enjoy them and live the abundant life there are some actions we must take as we walk our Christian journey. Be Blessed and encouraged on today!

Prayer
Heavenly Father, we thank you for your blessings and promises of Psalm 1. Give us wisdom on how to create time in our daily schedules to seek you more in prayer and the study of Your word. We thank you for your promise that if we seek Your kingdom and righteousness first that all these things will be given to us. In Jesus Name. Amen

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Lord Teach Me to Pray

Luke 11:1b NIV
“Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.”

Lord Teach Me To Pray
I spent a lot of time with my grandmother as a littler girl and teenager. I remember spending summers with her and during the week I’d have to go with her to her weekly prayer meeting. There I was this young person, in a room full of middle aged and elderly women who loved the Lord and they loved to PRAY! Little did I know many years later I would understand those women’s passion for prayer and be just like them!

In years past as I got acquainted with various women at my church I recall having my own personal one on one prayer times with them. They displayed such boldness and confidence when they prayed. Most importantly I knew God was in the midst as they prayed. After praying with these beautiful women I would walk away each time thinking “Wow, these women must have Jesus’s personal cell phone number”, because I would walk away immediately full of peace and hope and sometimes immediate answers and breakthroughs. They would have encouraging words that felt like God was speaking to me through them….which I now understand He was. These women opened my eyes to prayer and it’s powerful results.

As I matured spiritually I begin to feel like if they could do it, then so could I. I developed the desire to want to grow to a point where I could pray for my own self and not always have to call these women or the prayer line to have someone pray for me, so like the disciples I said “Lord, teach me how to pray!” God answered my prayers immediately! I was directed to the book “The Master Is Calling” by Lynne Hammond which gave me in in depth study on prayer. Now I love to pray! I love the time with God. I love when God speaks back. I love the power and results of prayer. I just love prayer! I love prayer so much that it hurts my heart to hear someone say they don’t pray because they don’t have time to pray or they don’t know how to pray. It hurts my heart because if only these individuals knew what prayer could do they’d find the time! No, I am not casting judgment on anyone who falls in this category. If you find yourself not having time to pray, don’t know how to pray, or you just want to grow in prayer, then today’s Feevotional is specifically for you. Today I want to encourage you and pray with you by sharing my personal tips on prayer.

GOD DESIRES US TO PRAY
Philippians 4:6 NIV
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” God desires to fellowship and communicate with us. He wants you to “pray continually” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). Quiet time and prayer is a way to spend time with God and to let him know the matters of your heart. Each new day faces a new challenge and new cares and concerns. God does not want us to worry about those things. He wants us to pray and petition for everything according to Philippians 4:6. Scripture reminds us, “devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” (Colossians 4:2) When you pray and speak to God it’s the same feeling you get when you release and vent to a friend. The difference is you are telling the one who has all things under control and you can rest assure “His ears are attentive to your prayers.” (1 Peter 3:12)

YOU CAN PRAY AT ANY TIME OF DAY
Psalm 55:16-17
“As for me, I will call upon God, and the Lord shall save me. Evening and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud; and He shall hear my voice.”
There are 24 hours in a day, so there is always time to pray as you or no human is busy all 24 hours. We can make time and squeeze in time for everything and everybody else, so why not make time for the One who allowed you to exist? David elected to pray at various times of day. My personal preference is early in the morning. Like David “In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.” (Psalm 5:3) When I wake up in the wee hours of the night around 1 or 2am I enjoy praying. Jesus prayed at night (Luke 6:12) and Paul and Silas prayed and seen breakthrough at midnight (Acts 16:25). For me this is the quietest time of my 24 hours. No one is bothering me. No e-mails. No text messages. I can’t even hear the neighbors. It’s just peace and quiet, me and God. My mind is clear and I can focus and spend time with my Heavenly Father. It’s during these times I have my best times and my most focused prayer times. I am not limited to only praying in the morning. There are times throughout the day where I pause to speak to God, say thank you or pray for something I am dealing with at work. Someone may e-mail me some news or I may receive a text message and I will usually pause to pray immediately if I am able to.

THERE ARE NO RULES FOR PRAYER
There are no rules or formulas for the amount of time you pray or for how long your prayer should be. I can pray for long periods of times. Then there are times where all I can get out is “Thank you Lord for this day. Amen”. I’ve seen people pray for long times. Some were just because they wanted to ramble on and for show and other long prayers were truly Holy Spirit inspired. The Bible warns us against this in Matthew 6:5-8 “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.” What matters is that your prayers are sincere words from your heart and not to put on a show for others. Prayer doesn’t have to be elaborate (i.e. thiseth and thoueth). You communicate with God in your language as if you were talking to a respected friend.

WHEN YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT TO PRAY
There will be times you don’t know what to pray, but you want to pray. One suggestion is to pray the Lord’s Prayer found in Matthew 6:9-13. God has given us this prayer model as a guide. You can also start by just telling God how much you love and appreciate Him. Another alternative is to sit in silence and ask the Holy Spirit to lead you in the words to say. Romans 8:26-27 reminds us that “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.” The Holy Spirit is interceding on your behalf according to God’s will.

I pray you were encouraged today to start your prayer life, or make an attempt to pray more often. God loves you and he just wants to hear from you more than on an as needed basis. I encourage you to communicate with our heavenly father more. He’d love to hear from you. Be blessed and be encouraged.

“Pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” (Ephesians 6:18)

Prayer
Lord, teach us to pray. Forgive us for the times we’ve only come to you when we need something. Guide us on how to commune and fellowship with you in prayer. Give us direction on the best times to spend with you. Give us strength and wisdom to seek you more. In Jesus Name. Amen

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Prayer Resources
Here are a few of my favorite prayer resources to help you get started, get back on track, or to enhance your prayer life!
* Bible (You Version App) – Teach Me To Pray Reading Plan
* Power of a Praying Woman (Author Stormie Omartian)
* The Master is Calling (Author Lynne Hammond)