Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for unto thee will I pray. My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up. (Psalm 5:2-3)
THE BIBLE COMMENDS AND COMMANDS us to pray and affords us many examples of people who prayed. The Psalms are a prayer book. When Peter was about to go under the waves, he did a nice spontaneous prayer. But prayers don’t have to be spontaneous, without forethought to be authentic. The disciples came to Jesus and said: And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples. (Luke 11:1)
THEN, THERE MUST BE MORE TO EFFECTIVE PRAYING than meets the eye. John…taught….his disciples about prayer. (Some of Jesus’ disciples were former disciples of John.) Don’t we all know that prayer is simply talking to God? Yes, that is one way of thinking about prayer and most people probably think of it that way. But some prayers are better prayers than other prayers. That’s why the disciples asked Jesus to teach them to pray.
I HAVE A SHELF FULL OF BOOKS ON PRAYER. I have read all of them and several of them many times. I like the book, Elijah, by Arthur Pink. I try to read it every year. I like to read about, learn about prayer. I figure we can get more from our time spent if we read after people who have traveled the road themselves before they wrote a book about it. Books on prayer do two things: 1. They inform us. 2. They inspire us (motivate us). I have seen some things happen in answer to prayer.
I BELIEVE THAT EQUIPPING OURSELVES FOR REGULAR, serious prayer is the heart of living the Christian life. I’ve liked books since I was six years old but reading books about prayer is not prayer. Reading Bible verses about prayer is not prayer. It can be. But, just reading Bible verses about prayer is not prayer.
READING AND LISTENING IS EATING. Praying is breathing. We can go longer without eating than we can go without breathing. That’s why the Bible tells us to: Pray without ceasing. (1Thessalonians 5:17) We’re told that “without ceasing” here means like “an intermittent cough.” We cough a bit. In a few minutes, we have to cough again. That’s coughing without ceasing. Praying without ceasing is like that. Not on our knees. Not in a church.
WE COULDN'T PRAY WITHOUT CEASING IF WE HAD TO BE ON OUR KNEES to pray or if we had to move our lips to pray. (Although it’s a very good thing to pray on our knees if we can and to move our lips if we can.) We can pray while driving, working, taking a test in the classroom, lying in a hospital bed, lying in bed in a sick room. We can pray when we can’t say a word. We can pray when we cannot be heard. We can pray when it’s cloudy or fair. We can pray, any time, anywhere.
TODAY, I WANT TO LEAVE TWELVE VERSES ON PRAYER for you to memorize and incorporate into your praying. Please write these verses on cards and carry them with you. Read them over several times during the day. Then, select three of them to concentrate on to memorize. Quote these three verses as you pray. Include a verse or two in your very next time of meeting with God to pray. Believe God. Cast yourself upon Him and expect Him to meet with you. He may show you something that needs to be done, something that needs to change.
FOR EXAMPLE: “Dear God, your word says, Draw nigh unto God and He will draw nigh unto you. I believe that. It’s in my heart today to draw nigh to you. Please show me what I need to do to draw closer to you today. I expect You to draw near to me. I know You will keep Your word, and so I wait before You today, to draw near to You and for You to draw near to me.”
AS YOU WAIT BEFORE HIM, you may find yourself borne along by the Holy Spirit as though He is praying through you. That is what happens when we pray in the Spirit. Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints; (Ephesians 6:18)
GOD WANTS YOU TO WORSHIP HIM, to come into His presence, to talk with Him. Jesus told the woman at the well: But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. (John 4:23) God is waiting, is looking for us to come to Him. Can you believe this? Can you lay hold of this? Will you let this lay hold of you? It will change your life!
THERE ARE MORE THAN A HUNDRED VERSES we can repeat back to the Lord in our praying. I’m compiling a larger list and will soon mail it out. You can copy the pages on your printer, fold and keep one page folded in your Bible. Set your printer to print on “Draft” quality. That uses the smallest amount of ink and it will prevent bleeding through the paper.
YOU WILL PRINT BOTH SIDES OF THE PAPER and you don’t want it to bleed through. The verses will use ½” margins to get the most we can on each page. You may have to give your computer permission to print on ½’ margins. On average, that will give us 15-16 verses per side, or about thirty verses per sheet of paper. You can print these for yourself, your family, Sunday school or hand out in church, or wherever you have an opportunity.
FOUR PAGES WILL HOLD ROUGHLY 100 VERSES if printed this way. Use standard printing paper which is usually 20-pound weight. If you don’t have a printer you can copy the file on a little “finger file” and take to your local printer. Or, you can send by email to a close-by friend whose printer is operating.
YOU CAN COPY AND PASTE THESE VERSES and print them on paper, if you like. I believe they will fit on 8 ½ x 11 paper. I don’t know if you can do it from your smart phone. It all depends on how you are set up.
●Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not. (Jeremiah 33:3)
●Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for unto thee will I pray. My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee and will look up. (Psalm 5:2-3)
●And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed. (Mark 1:35)
●And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. (Luke 6:12)
●Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice. (Psalm 55:17)
●Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime. (Daniel 6:10)
●Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. (James 4:8)
●Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. (Psalm 139:23-24)
●He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. (Psalm 91:1-2)
●…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 trespasses), as we forgive (those who trespass against us). 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. (Matthew 6:9-13)
●And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him. (1John 5:14-15)
●Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. (Isaiah 41:10)
Read Through the Bible in a Year
FEBRUARY 4, 2019 - MONDAY
A.M. Exodus 34-36 P.M. Matthew 23:1-22
(Bible Gateway will read this to you if you like. Look for the speaker icon.)
Good Verses to Memorize:
And some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, Master, rebuke thy disciples. And he answered and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out. (Luke 19:40)
Song for Today:
Let the Rocks Cry Out (2:48) (Calvary Memorial Church)
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Health Tip(s): Slowly, but surely, the wheel of settled wisdom is turning toward a few simple things we all can do toward having the best health possible. Every day, drink at least a quart of water plus other drinks. Green tea is a plus, and a bit of coffee if your stomach will allow it. Chew your food until it is an easy-to-swallow paste without washing it down. Lean heavily toward a plant-based diet. Get enough healthy fat in our diets. (Olive and coconut oils are premium). Your heat-stable fats are: olive/coconut oil, peanut oil, butter and…hog lard. Do all your cooking with these fats. Add other fats after cooking. Your gall bladder must have fat passing through your gut to empty your gall bladder and prevent gall stones.
Keep the sugar intake low, very low. Nix the no-sugar sweeteners. They make you fat and mess up your chemistry. Prefer wild, cold-water fish as your meat, with some free-range chicken. Avoid farm fish and commercial chicken that has fed on anti-biotics and growth hormones. When company comes, fill them up on bacon, sausage, eggs, gravy and biscuits but quickly get over it. Avoid the white sisters: white flour (in all forms), white rice and white sugar.
While moving our fingers is good, moving the whole body is even better. Forget about jogging. Fast walking is preferred because it does not pound our knees and move us toward knee replacement. Next to walking, the jumping rebounders are outstanding exercisers. We may not need breakfast if we can do without it, to give our bodies more fasting time after yesterday’s last meal. First thing in the morning: drink a pint of slightly warmed water to help our body flush out toxins accumulated during the night. Get enough sleep.
Fiber at mid-morning and mid-afternoon with plenty of water. (Psyllium whole husk) Animal products have zero fiber. Digestion and elimination are central and something we can do ourselves. Nobody gets out of this world alive (except Enoch and Elijah) so just make yourself comfy and enjoy the ride. Fight as little as possible. Do something nice for somebody every day. Ω