Monthly Archives: April 2012

life abundant

We have a small palm tree in our garden. It has a lot of green at the top. It looks like it is a healthy tree, but…

about 6 years ago, we had a gopher taking residence in our garden.

he was a squatter…

no respect, no rent paid, no thought of our yard, piles of dirt, dead flowers

should i go on?

One of the things he really enjoyed was the root system of our little palm trees. He would dig in underneath and chomp down on some fancy, tasty roots in the base of the trees.

One fell… dead… no hope…

We were sad. Those trees were hand-picked by the landscaper to highlight the edges of our garden. They were expensive, but we had made the decision to part with that money for the beauty it would bring to our yard. We mourned, but got over it and moved on…

The next one fell… dead… no warning!

That one hurt, we were now mad! That gopher was going down! What was he thinking? He could just move in and eat anything he wanted? No way! The hunt began.

we began to see less and less of him… less evidence of his presence… less piles of dirt…

“HA! we’re winning! he’s moving out!”

then one day…

he was gone.

ah…….

nice……..

our garden is coming back…..

there is one palm left.

the years have passed. the one palm in the front looks pretty, but seemed weak at it’s base. we think it’s fine, it has a lot of green on top… it looks fine from the outside…

Wait…

what’s this?

there’s a hole in the base. he’s not growing. he looks alive, but he is dead. he still doesn’t know it – we didn’t know it. to look at him, he looks fine. the years have gone by. he stands. looking alive. looking fresh. never growing beyond this point, but never really dying either.

never advancing…

never changing…

dead.

i look at this tree each day, not able to throw him away, not able to let go, knowing that he is dead…

looking at this tree, i think to myself: are you dead? do you walk the same path every day, but never grow, never change? what is different about your life? do you have life? are you living the life you were meant to live? are you accomplishing your purpose? do you know the One who gives life? are you building relationship with Him and loving others each day? each day is a new journey, a new step, a choice to grow, to change, to experience or to not.

how many people do you see that are dead and just don’t know it yet?

we walk around, go thru life, do our daily routines, we look alive…

but we are dead.

inside…

“He who has the Son, has the life, he who does not have the Son
does not have the life!” 1 John 5:12

if you do not have the Son, you are dead, not “spiritual” – dead.

That’s some harsh reality right there. You must have the Son to have LIFE! Jesus said that He came to bring LIFE, not just daily existence, getting thru it, but LIFE ABUNDANT. He came to bring YOU THE LIFE. that YOU MIGHT LIVE!

“Why do you seek the living One among the dead?” Luke 24:5b
Why do you keep looking for life in dead places?

“I came that they might have life, and have it abundantly!” John 10:10NASB

“I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance
(to the full, till it overflows).” John 10:10AMP

Again… are you DEAD?

Do you just get thru each day?

Today i prayed for YOU! to have LIFE MORE ABUNDANT! more filling, more satisfying, more energy, more enjoyment, more opportunity to live, to love, to hope, to experience joy in a new way. i prayed that you would be so filled with joy that no news, no reality, no hard situation, no person will be able to bring you down. i prayed that you would be happy beyond your circumstances, that you would have life abundantly fill each aspect of your day.

today i prayed for you…
and i threw that tree away
so that i might plant something that will have life more abundant
and i will think of you each day…
as i pray…
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waiting

I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always offering prayer with joy in my every prayer for you all, in view of your participation in the gospel from the first day until now.  For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:3-6

Today i am waiting… anticipating… i’m excited… things have moved forward and now we wait for the next step. it’s hard to wait, but it grows my character, my patience, matures me. it’s a good thing that i wait for, but…

Today, as i wait, i think of those who are waiting for difficult things, for hard news, for answers to prayers. those are the hard ones, those are the most intense things in life. do you wait for answers? for sickness, for a child’s well-being, for news about cancer, for adoption, a parent’s health, education, employment, family struggles, peace, finances?

Give ear to my words, oh Lord, consider my sighing.
Listen to my cry for help, my King and my God,
for to You i pray.
In the morning, oh Lord, You hear my requests before You
and wait in expectation. Psalm 5:1-3
But let all who take refuge in You be glad;
let them ever sing for joy.
Spread Your protection over them,
that those who love Your name
may rejoice in You.
For surely, oh Lord, You bless the righteous;
You surround them with your favor as with a shield. Psalm 5:11-12

Today i prayed for you to have those answers, to find that job, to be blessed beyond your wildest imagination. today i prayed for peace to surround you in the hard answers, the no’s, the waiting. i pray for your heart to be renewed, your faith to grow strong, your love to grow deep, your joy to abound. i pray that you will be filled to overflowing in your weakness, that you would grow while you wait, that you will find strength in the hard answers. i pray for guidance and truth to surround you throughout your day and help you wait expectantly for your answer…

Today i prayed for you…


heartbreak

Today… today… today… today i cannot pray.

my heart is troubled, my mind is cluttered, my stomach is sick.
today is a day like others before, but then again, not.
today i am hurting.

prayer is hard when you are in a place of turmoil. people say that prayer is most powerful when coming from anguish, and although i might agree with that, i don’t always feel it.
feelings get in the way of true prayer. feelings are a gift from God, and yet sometimes, they feel a curse. they cloud our judgment, our mind, our bodies, our souls. they block communication, they block truth. today, my feelings cloud my communication, block truth, and cause me to fall…

to the One…

Lord, hear my prayer…

“I call on You, oh God, for you will answer me;
give ear to me and hear my prayer. Show the wonder of Your great love,
You who save by Your right hand those who take refuge in You from their foes.”

Spirit, help me in my weakness.
I do not know what to pray for, but You
intercede for me with groans that words cannot express.
Search my heart,
You who knows the mind of the Spirit,
intercede for me
with God’s perfect will.

Today i pray for those who are hurting, those who are broken, those beyond tears. i pray for those who are aching, those who have no one to turn to. i pray that they would turn to the One who can lift them up, cry with them, hold them in their hurt, love them in their despair. i pray for those who are weak and do not feel they can stand, those who are destroyed by the ones they love, those who are defeated, battered, abused, buffeted by the waves of this world. i pray that love washes over you, that new friendships blossom, that you know the Truth no matter what, that you find a place that you are safe. i pray that you become whole and new again and find rest for your soul…

Today i prayed for you…

steps

The first steps begin today. the journey has begun. i feel so strained, so alone, so sad. we must mourn for the old life and rejoice for the new. so today we are mourning the old, but i am so uncertain about the future. tears pour as i think about what might be, the worries, the change, the unknown. God encourages Israel saying, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” on these words, i stand this day, shaking, hopeful, scared, expectant.

Today i prayed for those taking the first steps. those who are on the new path, those who are unsure of the future. i pray that You would come beside them and uphold them and love them and reassure them and strengthen them. i pray that God would bring people into your day that will be encouraging, inspiring, a breath of fresh air to make the journey that much easier. i pray that as we walk this path together, it would not be too much to bear, that you would reach out to the One who walks with you, that you would allow Him to hold you when things seem overwhelming, that you would call to Him and He would answer your heart.

Today i prayed for you…


journey

God is taking me on a journey. i believe we are all on this journey, but many days do not recognize it. today, i realized the journey. the journey will be hard, rough, new, unfamiliar, but it will also be rewarding, fulfilling, joyful, a time of growing. a time of growing is always painful. i am anxious and excited about the journey. i am also blessed to have many who will walk with me on this journey when it gets hard, encourage me when i’m lonely, and rejoice with me when we reach the top of the mountain! i am so grateful for you…

today i prayed for those who are on the journey, those on the path that God has laid before them, those who have strayed, those who are coming back. today i prayed for those who know their journey. i prayed for peace on your walk, joy in your run, love in your crawl. today, i prayed that you would know the One who walks with you, rejoices with you, holds you when you are broken, carries you to the finish. today i prayed for the ones who don’t know their journey, the ones who seek, the ones lost. i prayed that you will find your journey, your path, and rejoice in it, rejoice in your walk. today i prayed that you would have hope, be given love, find peace. i pray that you would have many that join your journey, support your walk, enjoy it with you. i pray that in the times that you feel lonely, you would know that there is One that will never leave you. He walks your path with you, even in the times when you cannot feel Him, see Him, hear Him. He is with you. today i prayed for the journey…

Genesis 24:42 “So I came today to the spring, and said, ‘Oh Lord, the God of my master Abraham, if now You will make my journey on which I go successful.”


Easter

Today is Easter, the Resurrection Day, the Day that all of Christianity hinges on. Today is the day that Jesus, who was murdered by hanging on a cross, rose from the dead and conquered death. History tells us that Jesus existed. People tell us that he was a good teacher, a moral man, a loving man. “but who do you say I am?” Jesus told us that He is God (John 1:1, John 8:58, John 10:30), He is Truth (John 18:37), He is the only way (John 14:6). If today didn’t happen, then Christianity is built on a lie and millions are misled. If today didn’t happen, then the God i pray to, doesn’t exist. But it did and He did and He is. He is the I AM of all existence.

Today, millions will go to church. Some for the first time, some who haven’t gone in years, some who don’t want to be there, some who are uncomfortable, some who just are. Today i pray for these, the broken, the weary, the seeking, the sought. Today i pray that they will find answers, that they will find hope, that they will find rest. On this day, i pray for all that come into Your sanctuary, that they find peace, that they find truth, that they find love. Today, Lord, on the best day of the Christian faith, i pray that millions will find You and know that You are and know that You can and know that You will. Today i pray for the millions that already know You. That they would be refreshed, energized, made whole, completed in You. That this day would propel them into a fresh faith, to live the abundant life that You make available to us all. Today i prayed for you…

Matthew 16:15 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”


a friend

i have a friend, i imagine we all have this friend… this friend, she is a Godly woman. much of our friendship, i’ve seen her treated poorly by her ex-husband, her children, her friends, her family. and always, she has responded in grace and silence, with head bowed in prayer for them with humility and forgiveness. she takes it. i cry for her and am angry for her and get outraged for her, but mostly i admire her because she is exactly who God talks about when He speaks to us to be kind, loving, gentle in spirit, giving, and turning the other cheek. He speaks to us about holding ourselves in a place that the world doesn’t understand, holding our temper and allowing Him to take care of these situations for us. since i’ve watched her, she has grown closer to Him and ultimately, one by one, her family is being restored to the Father. her husband is turning back to God and being restored, her children are turning back to God, loving on her, realizing their failures, being restored to wholeness. Her family will be a story of restoration for God’s glory because of her quiet patience.

today i pray for my friend and her family and all others like her. the Godly women, men, children, who take it on the chin daily and turn in prayer that God would restore their loved ones and forgive them. i pray for these that humbly show the Father’s love to all of us, that grace and peace abound in their lives, that the ones they pray for will turn back to God and see the err of their ways, that their prayers would be answered. today i pray that we would find this humility in ourselves, that we would see where we hurt others and repent of that, that we would be transformed each day into people of prayer, people that turn to the Father and show His love to those who hurt us, those who mistreat us, those who are hard to love. today i pray that we would know how to be the Christian people that you told us to be in Your Word… today i prayed for a friend.

  [Luke 6] 27 “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.
   32 “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. 35 But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. 36 Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.


John Wesley Reid

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