Praising God 2020 Recap

Hi Friends! Over the month of July I will be revisiting some past posts. Today I am sharing my 2020 posts on the subject of praising God. When the pandemic hit last year, I quickly learned the importance of praising God. I read through the book of Psalms, reading five Psalms a day. And I implemented praise into my daily life. Instead of feeling down, as many were during those months, I felt a new sense of peace. It amazed me how much praising God could lift our spirits. This is because when we focus on praising God, we are concentrating on His goodness, not on our worries. Whether you are struggling with anything right now or not, I encourage you to make praising God part of your life. It will bring you joy as you cling to the magnificence of our Lord and Savior. Below are the posts I shared last spring, if you are interested in reading any of them again. Personally, I have needed to revisit the importance of praise lately in my own life. So perhaps you do as well. If so, I hope this brings you some encouragement to praise God through life’s ups and downs.

“Let the seeking man reach a place where life and lips join to say continually, ‘Be thou exalted,’ and a thousand minor problems will be solved at once.” – A.W. Tozer

The Secret to Life

Praising God Wholeheartedly

A Secret to Praising God

How to Praise God

Where to Praise God

When to Praise God

Let’s Praise God Together

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© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas

Prayer ~ Part 9

Today I want to take a few moments to pray together. Feel free to use this prayer as a prompt at any time.


Dear Heavenly Father, we humbly come before you today in prayer to seek Your grace and guidance.

Lord, first we want to confess anything hidden in our hearts that needs to go. Please show us anything that we might not be aware of that is lurking below the surface. Cleanse us from these hidden faults. We are sorry we grieve You at times when we hold onto our old ways. We hand it all over to You now. Please help us to overcome our weaknesses and move forward in Your grace. Thank You, God. [Take a moment to think about any sins or mistakes that you would like to confess now.]

Lord, we also want to ask You today to help us with the different things that have been weighing on our hearts and minds. Please give us the strength and wisdom we need to move forward in faith. We have spent a lot of time worrying about these things. But we know You don’t like for us to worry. So we are handing our concerns over to You. What freedom it brings to know that You are handling all of our needs. Thank You, God. [Take a moment to think about any concerns you have, and seek God’s help now.]

Lord, we also have different loved ones who are on our hearts today. Please help them with the struggles they are facing. Please help them to draw closer to You. Please help them to see that You are their ultimate source. We ask that You please guide them on their path and provide for their needs. Sometimes we feel helpless when we see our loved ones dealing with various concerns. But we know how powerful prayer is, and we place them in Your hands. Thank You, God. [Think about different family members and friends who need prayer and lift them up to God.]

Lord, we thank You for all that You do for us each and every day. You continually shower us with blessings and favor. We are so grateful for all that we have. We thank You that we can come to You in prayer at any time. What a gift that is! We are so thankful for Jesus and the price He paid for us. And Lord, we are also thankful for the Holy Spirit who guides us daily. We have so much to be thankful for. [Add anything else that you would like to give thanks for.]

Lord, we praise You and all that You are. You are greater than anything and everything. Our minds have trouble grasping just how marvelous You are, God. Words cannot even describe Your glory. We take a look around at this world and this universe and we are in awe of how You set everything in place. Yet You also see each one of us and know us by name. What a gift it is to know that You love us and care for us. Thank You, God. You are the King of kings and the Lord of lords. We give You all the honor and all the glory. [Feel free to add your own praises.]

It is in Jesus’ precious name we pray. Amen.

[Also, take a few minutes to sit quietly with God. Listen for anything He might want to reveal to you.]


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© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas

Prayer ~ Part 8

It says in Luke 5:16, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” And indeed when we read the Gospels, we see how spending time in prayer was important to Jesus. We see many instances where it says He withdrew from the crowd and went to a solitary place to pray. If this time alone with the Father was vital for Jesus, how much more important should it be for us?

There is something significant that I hope to convey here. Prayer is so much more than something we check off of our to do lists. Prayer is not something we HAVE to do. Prayer is something we GET to do. Prayer is an honor and a privilege. We are able to meet with our loving Father at any time and from anywhere.

As we pray, we are being shaped and formed to be more like Jesus. We are molded into the person God purposed us to be. We shed the gunk of this world as we are transformed from the inside out.

“Walking with God down the avenues of prayer we acquire something of His likeness, and unconsciously we become witnesses to others of His beauty and His grace.” – E. M. Bounds

Whether we are crying our in despair, whispering words of gratitude, calling out in praise, or begging for divine help – He is there. He is eager to hear from us. He listens to every word. And He is happy to help us and wrap us in His loving arms.

“So now we draw near freely and boldly to where grace is enthroned, to receive mercy’s kiss and discover the grace we urgently need to strengthen us in our time of weakness.” – Hebrews 4:16 TPT

Spending time with God in prayer helps us to learn more about Him. We begin to understand how incredibly merciful and faithful He is. We are filled with awe at His goodness. His love fills a void deep within our hearts.

“The first privilege of having an intimate relationship with God through prayer is that you get to know God. Consider what a great and awesome honor that is—to know the One who not only created all that exists but also directs it from His mighty throne.” – Dr. Charles F. Stanley

We sit in God’s presence and have a conversation with Him. We are forming a strong bond and a meaningful relationship. God is incredibly fond of us and longs to hear from us. Through prayer we not only receive strength and help and guidance, but we also receive love and tender care. May we remember the priceless gift we have in prayer.

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© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas

Prayer ~ Part 7

Last week I briefly mentioned intercession as a type of prayer that we can implement in our prayer lives. Today I wanted to dig deeper into this topic.

1 – We can intercede for others

It might sound complex at first, but this is actually something we do all the time. When we pray for other people, we are interceding on their behalf. And this is something the Bible instructs us to do.

1 Timothy 2:1-5 (NLT) it says, “I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth. For, There is one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity—the man Christ Jesus.”

We have many opportunities to pray for other people. First, we can pray for non-believers to be saved. It says above in verse 4 that the Lord “wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth.” We might be a witness to some people, and explain the gospel to them. But even if they reject the message, we can continue to pray that the seed planted in their lives will grow.

We might also pray for those who need healing of some sort. We can pray for anyone who is struggling with a particular difficulty in their life. Prayer would be a good place to start when we know someone who is battling something spiritually. I am being a little vague here, because the truth is that the opportunities for prayer are endless. From someone who has a drug addiction, to someone who has a problem with anger, to someone who is battling cancer, to someone who has a financial concern – we can pray in all these instances.

Sometimes we feel helpless when our loved ones are dealing with a mountain. But prayer is the most powerful weapon there is!

I really appreciate how 1 Timothy 2:2 says to “Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority.” This is a great reminder for us to add our government leaders to our prayer lists. We can pray for the leaders in our own countries and across the globe. The decisions they make will affect our lives. And I imagine it is not easy to be in such positions. Whether we agree with their views or not, there is room for prayer.

This verse also reminds us to pray for our pastors, law enforcement, bosses, and any other authority figures in our lives.

And there is something else that this verse implies. We don’t have to know someone personally to pray for them. Now this might seem to start a flood because there are so many people in the world. How would we know who exactly to pray for? It’s important to listen to the Holy Spirit. He will put a burden on our hearts for those who we should pray for.

2 – The Mediator

In 1 Timothy 2:5 it says, “There is one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity—the man Christ Jesus.” Jesus is our Mediator. It’s important to remember that Jesus bridged the gap between God and ourselves. In the book of Hebrews, Jesus is called our High Priest. Thanks to Jesus, our Mediator, and our High Priest, we are able to “come boldly to the throne of our gracious God” (Heb 4:16).

3 – The Lord intercedes for us

When we tell others that we will pray for them, it usually gives them a bit of comfort. And when we know someone is praying for us, it brings us some comfort too. Well, did you know that the Lord also intercedes for us? How amazing and comforting is that!

It says in Romans 8:26, “And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.” And it also says in Romans 8:34 that Jesus “is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.” These two verses should console us. No matter what difficulty we are facing, the Lord is interceding for us.

Intercession simply means that we can pray for other people. As you seek God in prayer, keep your loved ones in mind. Who do you know that needs prayer? And keep in mind that the Lord prays for us as well. So when we are facing something, big or small, we can have peace knowing that the Lord is interceding for us. What a glorious God we have!

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© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas

The Most Important Decision of Your Life

I felt led to share this, in case there was anyone out there who needed it…

Do you have a personal relationship with God? If not, then I invite you to begin one today. I promise you that you will not regret it. Having a relationship with the Lord will bring comfort and peace into your life.

But having a relationship with God, starts with accepting Jesus. The Bible says that we are all sinners and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). We all deserve to perish (Romans 6:23). And there is nothing we can do on our own to achieve salvation (Ephesians 2:9).

But the good news is that “If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9). This is because Jesus paid the price that we could never pay. He died for all of our sins. He took them on Himself so that we might have eternal life. Then three days after Jesus’s death, He rose from the dead. This ultimately defeated death and gave us the hope of salvation. It bridged the gap between a Holy God and ourselves.

A life with Jesus by your side can be so freeing. Every day we struggle with the weight of the world on our shoulders. But it doesn’t have to be that way. We can accept Jesus into our hearts, and let God handle our troubles. It doesn’t mean life will be perfect. But it does mean we will have peace, knowing that Almighty God is beside us. I can tell you firsthand how much my life has improved every day with Jesus in my life. I now have so much more joy in my heart, because I walk each day with an amazing Shepherd. And you can too.

I invite you to pray the prayer below. It will be the best decision of your life.

Lord Jesus, I ask You to please forgive me of my sins. I believe that You died on the cross for me and rose from the grave three days later. I can never thank You enough for paying my sin debt. Thank You for hearing my prayer. Thank You for Your unconditional love. I am ready to hand my life over to You. I am ready to walk in Your strength and power. I am ready for You to be the center, purpose, and meaning in my life. I am ready for You to be my Lord and Savior. In Jesus’s name I pray. Amen.

If you prayed this prayer, congratulations on your new life! Welcome to the family. You are a child of the Most High God. He loves you with an unfailing love. And He will be there for you, every single day.

Prayer ~ Part 6

When many people think of prayer, they think of asking God for things. That is a big part of our prayers. But it is not the only way we can pray. Today I want to outline several types of prayer.

1 – Confession and Repentance

In a previous post, I had mentioned that when we first embark on our relationship with the Lord, we confess our sins and repent of them. But this might be something we need to do again and again if sin continues to be a part of our lives. We are not perfect and we will mess up sometimes. Thankfully, as Christians, the Holy Spirit lives inside of us and nudges us when we have taken a wrong turn. This helps us to recognize sin and to take it to the Lord in prayer. We can ask for His forgiveness and then make every effort to turn away from that sin.

Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. – Psalm 51:10

2 – Petition / Supplication

This is what we are most familiar with in our prayer lives. We bring our needs before the Lord and ask Him for His help and provision. We might ask for necessities, such as food and clothing. We might ask for strength when facing something difficult. We might ask for healing, when we have a particular illness. We might ask for help with our finances. The items here are endless. The good news is that God knows exactly what we need and loves to provide for His children.

Many years ago, two missionaries, who were also husband and wife, spoke in front of our church. They talked about how little they had when they were on their missions trips. But they also talked about how God provided for them. One night they prayed for soap because they didn’t even have a bar of soap to bathe with. The next morning they discovered a bar of soap where they were staying. It had teeth marks in it and it appeared as though God had used a rat to transport it for them. When I heard them tell that story, it left an impact on me. This is a good reminder of how powerful prayer is and how much God wants to help us with our needs.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. – Philippians 4:6

3 – Intercession

Intercessory prayer is when we pray for other people. This is a powerful way to help our loved ones who need salvation, healing, protection, or anything else.

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people. – 1 Timothy 2:1

4 – Gratitude

In our prayers, I think it is important to thank God for all He has done for us. Thank Him for all the answered prayers. If you like keeping a prayer journal, this might be a good way to keep track of answered prayers. Personally I don’t have a dedicated prayer journal. But I do have a gratitude journal. In it I try to jot down blessings that I see in my life. This helps me to remember that even when things in my life are a little chaotic, there is still a whole lot of good in my life too. It reminds me of God’s goodness. And it reminds me that every day is a gift from God.

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. – 1 Thessalonians 5:18

5 – Praise

Praise and gratitude might sound pretty similar. In some ways they are. But praising God goes a little further than gratitude. When we praise God, we are praising Him for who He is, not just for all that He does for us. We praise Him for His character, His goodness, His magnificence, and His sovereignty.

Praise the Lord. Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever. – Psalm 106:1

These are a few types of prayers that we can implement into our daily prayer routines. If we try dividing our prayer time among these parts, I believe we will see our prayers become stronger and more meaningful. We will connect with God in a significant way. And we will walk away with more peace and joy in our hearts.

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© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas

Prayer ~ Part 5

I have read many books on prayer lately. But one thing that I learned is that you can read all the books in the world on prayer, but you still have to put it into practice for it to be useful! For me, forming a habit and staying organized were essential. Here are some methods and tools that I have used in my prayer life recently.

Stay Organized

I like to keep a prayer list. I simply use paper and pen to write out names of people who need prayer, as well as particular concerns in my own life. I find a list to be helpful because I might not always remember different people or topics that I intended to pray about. And I also have this list on my phone so I can access it anytime and anywhere. A list can become quite long. So don’t feel obligated to get through all items every day. You could categorize high priority items that need prayer daily. Then some of the other items you can rotate through during a week’s time.

Prayer Prompts

I am not a talkative person. So even in prayer, I struggle to find words to say. I might not always know what to pray about, or I might not always have the words. So one thing I have been using periodically is the prayer I posted at the beginning of the year. It is a comprehensive list of different needs which we might pray about. I have used this to pray for myself and also for loved ones. I printed this post out on paper to keep it handy, and I also added the hyperlink to my favorites on my phone so I can access it electronically.

There are many wonderful prayer devotionals as well. These are excellent resources to help you focus on prayer and to add a little variety to your prayers.

Stay Focused

Most often I pray silently. But I confess that my mind does wander sometimes. So I also like to pray aloud as a means to keep myself focused. Usually I will only do this in the car when driving alone, so that only God will hear me!

Side note: One important thing to remember about prayer is that it is a conversation. When we converse with others, it is a two-way street. We will talk some, and the other person will talk some as well. As it is in prayer as well. So we have to remember to include listening to God anytime we communicate with Him.

You might consider incorporating prayer into your exercise routine. If you walk, jog, or cycle – those are all great times to pray. I especially like praying outdoors because I feel closer to God in nature. But this works on indoor equipment as well. And it will help your exercise time to go by faster and not be quite so boring!

Journaling

Some people like to keep a prayer journal. This is another good way to keep yourself focused. However, personally, I don’t normally write out my prayers because it takes longer to write than it does to just speak to God. But I will write out certain prayers, if something in particular is weighing on my heart or if it is something I wouldn’t mind keeping record of.

As I mentioned in a previous post, during Lent I did write out prayers in a Write The Word journal by Cultivate What Matters. In these journals the majority of my prayers were focused on particular Bible verses. This was a good way for me to combine Scripture and prayer. Doing this has so many benefits. It helps the Bible to have more meaning as we apply it to our lives. And it helps us make our prayers more meaningful as well.

Reminders

I do keep a gratitude journal and there is one way that this helped me to stay on track with my prayers recently. On days when I prayed, I have been putting a check mark and the word “Pray” next to it. This is a simple way to keep myself accountable. Another option is to put a sticky note somewhere that you will see it every day. I fear that many days we hit the ground running and prayer can easily become an afterthought. So try to think of ways you can remind yourself to pray each day, or even throughout the day.

These are a few things that I have had to keep in mind over the last several months as I’ve tried to improve my prayer life. Different things work for different people. For me, I like to keep things simple and keep tools handy, otherwise I might feel overwhelmed. I hope you will give this some thought to see how you might make changes in your prayer life. Doing so will help you to make prayer a daily habit, which will result in cherished moments with the Lord.

The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. – Psalm 145:18

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© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas

Prayer ~ Part 4

Prayer is a staple in a life of faith. Or perhaps we assume it is. But the truth is that many of us struggle with prayer. Why is that? There are numerous reasons why we might not make prayer a priority in our lives.

For one thing, we might feel like we are not seeing the results we expected. Sometimes our prayers take awhile before they are answered. Often times this means that God is working behind the scenes to make things happen. In Luke 18:1-8, Jesus teaches us to keep praying and never give up. And the Bible assures us countless times that God hears our prayers. We have to keep faith alive and stay anchored to Him.

Pray without ceasing. – 1 Thessalonians 5:17

Also, sometimes we feel discouraged if things go differently than we wanted. It is true that not all of our prayers will be answered in the way we hoped. We have to trust that the Lord knows what is best in our lives. If things go differently than we hoped, it is important to remember that God can see the big picture and we cannot.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. – Proverbs 3:5

Another reason why we might struggle with prayer is because we don’t always have the right words. That is okay. We don’t have to be eloquent when talking to God. We can just speak to Him like we are speaking to a friend. Open up to Him, share your thoughts and feelings, and remember that He is on your side. If you keep in mind the love and devotion that the Lord has for you, this will help you to speak more freely to Him.

I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. – John 15:15

Some of us shy away from prayer because we are used to handling everything ourselves. Perhaps over your life circumstances have taught you that you have to be strong, you have to stay in control, and if you want something done you have to do it yourself. There is nothing wrong with being proactive, accomplishing things, and working hard. But we cannot try to take over for God. We have to remember that He is the ruler of our lives. And when we also keep in mind that He is eager to help us, it takes a heavy weight off of our shoulders.

The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still. – Exodus 14:14

Some might also struggle to speak to God due to feelings of guilt. The first step in having a relationship with the Lord is to confess our sins and repent from them. This is customary when we first accept Jesus into our lives. But after that initial prayer, we might have to confess and repent on other occasions if we are holding onto sin in our lives. If there is something in your life that you know needs to go, take it to the Lord today. Tell Him you are sorry for whatever it is, and ask for His help in walking away from it. Then remember that you are forgiven and you do not need to feel guilty any longer. You might have to keep reminding yourself of the last point. Remember that God loves you and no longer sees your past mistakes. This will help you to approach His throne with confidence.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. – 1 John 1:9

These are just a few reasons why we might struggle with prayer. If prayer is something you have a hard time with, please take time today to give this some thought to see where your roadblocks might be. Once you define where your struggles are, you will have the ability to take action and overcome whatever is holding you back. And then you will have a new sense of freedom as you meet with God daily in prayer.

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© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas

Prayer ~ Part 3

Perhaps the most famous prayer in the Bible is the Lord’s Prayer. In Matthew 6:9-13, Jesus teaches us to pray. The King James Version is the most familiar, I believe.

After this manner therefore pray ye: “Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.”

Many of us have recited this in church, weekly. I imagine many people even recite it daily. I have a friend whose pastor does not agree with the church praying this prayer often. He believes that when we say something over and over, it loses it’s impact. I can see his point. At times we might say the words, but our minds are somewhere else. But when we focus on the words, our hearts can pull out key elements to use within our prayers.

1 – Reverence

Verse 9 starts off with the following: “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.” Some of these words can be confusing, so I like to look at other versions of the Bible to see how they translate these words. The NLT version puts verse 9 this way: “Pray like this: Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy.

When we pray, we should come humbly before God with reverence in our hearts. We should remember that He is holy and above everything our human minds can fathom. This helps us in a few ways. For one thing, it helps us to keep God in His rightful place. Also, it helps us to remember that we are placing our trust in the hands of the only One who is almighty. I believe this verse also reminds us to add praise into our prayers. When we praise God for who He is, this will in turn revive our hearts. This will help us to find joy because we are focused on our Savior and not our problems.

2 – Come into agreement with God

Verse 10 in the KJV says, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.” NLT puts it like this, “May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.

Many times in life and in our prayers, we think we know best. We believe we know how things should go in our lives, and even the lives of others. We are quick to offer an opinion, even when it’s not asked for. This verse reminds me that no matter what I may think, God ultimately knows what is best. And it would do us good to realign our thinking with His. God can see the big picture. He can see the beginning and the end. He can see how the jagged pieces of the puzzle will fit together and create a work of art. We have to learn to trust Him and then that will help us to come into agreement with Him.

3 – Pray for our needs and give thanks

Verse 11 seems pretty straightforward at first glance. The KJV says, “Give us this day our daily bread.” And NLT says, “Give us today the food we need.

Often our prayers are filled with requests. I think this is something many of us have mastered when it comes to prayer. We are good about asking God for what we want. However, I think there is much we can still learn from this verse. First, we ask for things we want, but often they might be things that we don’t necessarily need. This verse reminds me to adjust my perspective. Also, this verse is a reminder that we often forget to give thanks when our daily needs are met. Therefore, this verse nudges me to extend gratitude to God because He has always provided my daily bread, He has always provided me with a roof over my head, and He has always provided me with clothes to wear. I think that adding thanks to our prayers will help us to keep the right frame of mind. We might think that everything in life is really hard, until we stop and see how much God has blessed us.

But honestly, when I think about this verse, I think beyond actual food. In John 6:35 it says, “And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.” So when I pray for my “daily bread,” I am reminded to seek the Lord daily, by reading my Bible, praying, and spending time in His presence.

4 – Forgiveness

Verse 12 in the KJV says, “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.” NLT says, “And forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us.” When I was growing up, in church we used to say it like this, “And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.

This verse reminds us of a few things. For one thing, when we come to God in prayer, we should come with a repentant heart. As Christians, we have the Holy Spirit living inside of us. The Holy Spirit will often nudge us when we have messed up. And this is a trigger that we should confess our mistakes to God, and turn the other way. There are many things that our flesh will want to do that is not holy. This can be big or small. But when we come into agreement with God, the Holy Spirit helps us to discard the things that are no longer fitting in our lives as children of the Most High God.

This verse also reminds us that we have already been forgiven of so much. We should meet Jesus in thanksgiving, for all that He has done for us and the steep price He paid for us.

This verse also nudges us to forgive others. Because we have been forgiven of so much, we too should extend that forgiveness towards others.

5 – Walk with God

Verse 13 of the KJV says, “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.” The NLT puts verse 13 like this, “And don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one.” As you can see, this translation (and many translations) have left off the last line.

I feel the beginning part of this verse is an extension of verse 12. We sought God’s forgiveness for our sins, and now we are asking for His help to keep from sinning again. When we make it our mission to walk with God each day, it will be easier to resist temptation. Also, we are reminded of the daily battle we face against the devil. He has spread evil all across the globe and is always looking for ways to attack God’s children. So it does us good to remember this as we face each day. We cannot let our guard down. When we make it our mission to walk with God each day, this also helps us to stand strong against the enemy’s forces.

In this verse I like the last line that is often left out of many versions. I think it brings us around full circle to where we started. We are remembering who God is and we are remembering He is all powerful. This is a reminder that God should be on the throne of our hearts. And it also is a reminder that we have an Almighty God on our side.

It is such an honor and a privilege to meet God in prayer. I think sometimes we forget this and just expect God to be a genie who grants all of our wishes. But breaking down the verses of the Lord’s prayers, we are reminded to come to God with reverence in our hearts. We are reminded to come into agreement with God. We are reminded to pray for our needs, but also to be thankful for our blessings. We are reminded to repent, to be grateful for His mercy, and to extend forgiveness to others. And we are reminded to walk with God, resisting temptation and resisting the devil. Rather than repeating this prayer mindlessly, I hope that digging into it verse by verse will help open our hearts in a new way.

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© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas

Prayer ~ Part 2

One of the most powerful things we can do in our prayer lives is to implement Bible verses within our prayers. God’s Word is powerful and alive. As it says in Hebrews 4:12, “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” And it says in Isaiah 55:11, “So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” When we pray with Scripture, we are standing in agreement with God. We are aligning our hearts with His. In today’s post, I would like to walk through some examples that you can use in different situations.

1 – When facing something you don’t understand

Romans 8:28 is one of the most beautiful promises in the Bible. It tells us that God works all things together for the good of those who love Him. We will face many things in life that we do not understand. We might be quick to ask God, “Why?” But it would do us good to remember this verse and include it in prayer. We might pray something like this: Dear Heavenly Father, I don’t understand why this had to happen in my life. I admit it is painful to deal with. But I hand it over to You and remember that You knew this would happen. I trust what it says in Your Word, God. I believe that You work all things together for the good of those who love You. Thank You, Lord. I trust You and I hand this situation over to You.

2 – When worrying about the future

In Philippians 4:19, the apostle Paul is reminding the church of Philippi that God will supply their needs. It can be easy to worry about the things to come in our lives. Especially with the way the world has been in a state of chaos over the last year. This makes us worry even more about the unknowns that lie ahead. When these fearful moments hit, we can add the words from this verse into our prayers. We might pray something like: Dear God, I confess that thinking about the future brings on anxious thoughts. I don’t know what lies ahead, but You know. So I put my worries into Your hands. I know You will be there for me. And I know that You will supply all my needs from Your glorious riches. I trust You, God. Thank You for your endless love and care.

3 – When seeking the Lord’s protection

Psalm 91 is one of my favorite Psalms to pray for God’s protection. In fact, I try to remember to recite this daily over myself and my household. You can do this too by inserting your name and/or names of loved ones in place of the appropriate pronouns. For example, verse 2 says, “This I declare about the Lord: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him.” You can insert the person’s name in this way: “This Bridget declares about the Lord: He alone is Bridget’s refuge, Bridget’s place of safety; he is Bridget’s God, and Bridget trusts him.” Now try it with your name or the name of a particular loved one that needs protection: “This _____ declares about the Lord: He alone is _____’s refuge, _____’s place of safety; he is _____’s God, and _____ trusts him.”

These are just a few examples of how you can implement Scripture into your prayers. If you are facing a particular concern, try to find verses that talk about that issue. If your Bible has a concordance, you may use it to find pertinent verses. Or you can also search the internet for verses that deal with the topic you need. For example, if you are in need of healing, you can search for “Bible verses about healing.” One excellent website that I love to use is openbible.info. They have lists of Bible verses related to hundreds of topics.

The Bible is such a powerful weapon that the Lord has given us. Once you add God’s Word into your prayers, you will walk away from your prayer time feeling more at peace. You will be reminded of God’s promises and His goodness. And you will feel confidence, knowing that Almighty God is by your side.

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© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas