Superabounding Prayer

Philippians has some great truths about the believer’s adequacy and completeness. The world is not a perfect place. God gave man managerial power to take care of this planet. There is much in this world that is great and at the same time, man has made some mistakes.  God would not have given Adam the commission he did as recorded in the early chapters of Genesis, if he didn’t think he was adequate for the job. God gave him the knowledge and ability to manage the earth the way it should be managed.  Adam and Eve messed up and listened to someone else other than God. The results were not so great.

God wants his people to utilize all that he has provided for the benefit of their own lives. He designed the human body so that a human being is a very capable organism. Good magnifies this ability, evil corrupts it.

Paul’s prayer in the 1st chapter of Philippians shows perfectly God’s love and will for completeness;

9 And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment; 10 That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ. Philippians 1:9-10 (KJV)

God’s heart is that mankind will superabound more and more through knowledge and in every judgement (perception of ethical and good). The language in this verse is beautiful.  God wants us to weigh everything with what he has given us in the word to really have the best. We are to compare and separate out those things that are not in our best interest by seeing those things that cause us to superabound.

God wants us to be sincere by walking in full sunlight. Our actions can be revealed by that sunlight so that we are not tripped up. We don’t have to grope around in darkness trying to figure things out. God wants us to walk in his light until the day of Christ.

What is a great example of prayer! This is what we want for ourselves and the way we should for pray for  others!


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What does the Gift of Holy Spirit Mean to Us?

God is spirit according to John 4:24:

24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

God has given us a gift of what he himself is. We receive the gift of holy spirit when we recognize Jesus Christ as Lord and believe God raised him up from death. It gives us access to the throne of God and his wonderful son. We become sons of God through the spirit.

So what does that mean? I Corinthians gives us some amazing information in  chapters12, 13, 14 and it is something God does not want us to ignorant about. We must understand how that spirit works in us.  The profit that result from our utilization of the gift manifests itself as we rely on God:

7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. 

8 For to one (profit) is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another(again referring to the profit and in all the rest of the list) the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; 9 To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; 10 To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: 

11 But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will. I Corinthians 12:8-11

How do these benefits profit us?:

1. Word of wisdom – it is no accident that this is listed first. God’s wisdom supersedes all other wisdom.  We have access to that wisdom spiritually. God can inform us what to do about a given situation.

2. Word of knowledge –  It also applies to what is specifically going on around us. God can provide us knowledge about what is happening above what we know by our five senses.

3. Faith is our spiritual believing so necessary to enlist the power of God. Our minds may be shaky but our innermost being can rise to God’s level of carrying out what seems impossible.

4. Gifts of healing – healing is a gift of God.  We are surrounded by things that man created that are not the best for our health. God is the true healer and can pull us out of whatever challenge we face.

5. Working of miracles – the energizing of things that happen that are beyond our natural man ability. When healing takes place instantaneously, working of miracles has been energized by God.

6. Prophecy – speaking forth the heart and word that God wants spoken. There are many examples of this in the Old Testament with individual men and women upon whom the spirit of God rested on.  There were even times in the Old Testament when the spirit rested upon others, not just the leaders (Numbers 11:25-29).  God’s will is that he can communicate with any believer and that believer can speak forth the words of God. The New Testament provided this access.

7. Discerning of spirits- separating good from evil. God does not want us to be fooled.

8. Speaking in tongues- This refers to praying in the spirit. Sometimes we don’t know what to pray for or maybe we don’t have to know the details of what is going on. Maybe it is none of our business. We can still pray in the spirit. Praying is our business. Praying spiritually is so much easier than praying with our understanding sometimes.

9. Interpretation of tongues – when in a gathering, this explains what is spoken in a tongue so that all can be edified and built up.

God may give us a word of knowledge about something and then not tell us to do anything about it. Also, God doesn’t have to give us information on everything. The important thing to understand is that he’s the one who is the source and knows what is best.  Great lessons in life are learned when we rest in God’s wisdom.  Our brains were designed by God and we can think. To see spiritually, which is to see things that are hidden behind what we see, we need the spirit of God informing us. Something may appear so wonderful on the surface, but God may show us something totally different.

In I Corinthians 14:1, Paul writes that we are to follow after the love of God (I Corinthians 13) and desire spiritual matters and especially that we may prophesy.  Speaking God’s heart and word is what we all need. The gift of holy spirit is what inspires and reveals God’s solutions.

As ye also learned of Epaphras our dear fellowservant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ; Who also declared unto us your love in the Spirit.For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; Colossians 1:7-9

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Confusing Strength and Weakness

There is an inordinate amount of confusion in this world as to what is strength and what is weakness. Weakness is confused with strength and strength is confused with weakness. he apostle Paul had many challenges. He was strong and knew where his strength came from:

8 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. 9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient (be content enough) for thee: for my strength (dunamis- potential power) is made perfect (complete) in weakness(lack of strength. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities (frailty), in reproaches (insolence, insults and injury), in necessities (needs), in persecutions, in distresses (narrowness of room) for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong(capable). II Corinthians 12:8-10

Recognizing weakness in one’s own life has the potential to produce true strength in an individual. It takes guts to stand up for what one believes. It doesn’t take adamance and loud proclamations either as we see so frequently around us.  Paul said he would rather glory in his challenges. The word ‘glory’ represents confidence in a godly solution. It is the word ‘kauchaomai’ which means ‘to hold one’s head up high’. It is always found in the middle voice which means the person does this for himself. One can hold his/her head up high if he/she puts confidence in God and the resurrection power of Christ.

To live in this world takes work. The hard part often is in accepting God’s help. Sadly, many people accept the world’s solutions rather than the word’s solutions. Some don’t know God, some mock, some just don’t take the time to patiently wait for a solution. However, once a person sees how eager God is to help, it builds to trusting him again and again and again.

Whatever challenges arise can be dealt with in confidence when we trust God and apply his word to the situations. We just have to find out what God has to say about whatever problem arises. We can believe to get out of debt, be a blessing to others and live a free life, Whatever gets in our way can be dealt with effectively if we trust God and act. 

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Effectual Fervent Prayer

Yesterday I  decided to catch up with the news and not to my surprise, nothing had changed. The news echoed the same ole same ole drone of futility and negative banter as usual. It offered the fullest range of conspiracy, blame, shame, accusation, and defamation it could conger up and then repeated it from program to program, hour to hour.

Shark With Jaws Open Showing Teeth Clipart

Enough is enough! Life should not be as complicated or as sinister as is danced out in front of us in every newspaper, commentary and media presentation. People need to stand up and call it what it is. It is not about hiding our heads in the sand, nor is it about swimming with the sharks.  It is about telling the truth. It is only within truth that answers come.

James 5:16: Confess your (added by translators- leave it in or take it out) faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

The world is full of things that are wrong; things that God never intended for this world.  By openly agreeing and acknowledging what is off the mark, we open the doors to putting things right. We should do this together and cleave to what is right for one another other. Hiding is not ‘effectively fervent’. Prayer is to be ‘effectually fervent’ and full of energy to get things done. Prayer is openingly acknowledging God’s power and love. Effectual fervent prayer is honest and energetic.

‘Healing’ is the result. the first use of ‘healing’ is used in Genesis 20 in the Old Testament. It is a great example of this verse in James.  Abraham had gotten into a bad situation in Gerar because of some second guessing peppered with fear. To may a long story short (Read the record! It is exquisite) Abrahams wife ended up in the Philistine ruler’s  (Abimelech) harem and things started going awry.  No more children were being born in Abimeleh’s household and Abimelech spoke openly to Abraham (a prophet) about it. It was open acknowledgement of the truth and will of God. In the end, Abraham prayed and things were set right and everybody benefited.

A ‘righteous man is one who has been justified by Christ and can stand in the presence of God without fear, shame or guilt.  What a privilege! What a comfort! It is very powerful in our lives. We can do this together and make a difference!

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The Refreshed Mind

Recently I read Romans 12:2 and it seemed like I was reading it for the first time. God encourages us to think outside the box of this world’s thinking (which is not a bad idea these days) and experience the transformation that happens in your mind when it is refreshed by the word in any given situation.

And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing (refreshing) of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Romans 12:2

The world’s ploys and scheme of things can drop a gloomy veil over our surroundings. We can’t see it, but we can feel it.  The very second God’s word crosses our mind everything seems to lift. It is just like the morning fog that lifts as the light from the sun burns it off.

The word of God is refreshing! God challenges us to prove it to ourselves. Try it you’ll like it! The word buoys our hearts and lifts us so often beyond what we ask or think! We have decisions to make about many things. A while back I was tentative about where we were planning to go t get away from the snow.  My husband was eager to go to a certain place and I just hadn’t thought about it. I felt like I lacked the enthusiasm to do the things necessary to do it but decided to just give it to God. I just didn’t worry about it; neither did I dive in and work at it to overcome my lack of enthusiasm. Well, as the days went on I started looking forward to the getaway. I didn’t have to work hard or long in preparation, things fell into place so beautifully. I was abundantly blessed by it all. The whole thing turned out better than I could have expected.

There is so much in our lives that God can influence and bless. We just have to let him. Many people are afraid of God because of things they’ve been taught, or things they’ve done or experienced. They may be just afraid of things they don’t really know about or are just plain afraid of everything.

Several months ago I decided to select a verse to think about for a month at a time and when something came up I really leaned in on the particular verse during that time. The verse quickly became my harbor and safe haven! God will not knock us over the head with the word, but God is very eager to prove his word when we apply it. All that is required is a willing heart. That is really not a tough thing to do.

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The Genuine Example of Leadership

Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.

 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.

And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.

 Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.

O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.

John 17:17-26

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Clothed in Righteousness

Often what you put on can determine how you feel.  When you have just the right dress, suit, shirt, shoes or hat, it adds something to your overall demeanor. By the same token, you could put something on that is very uncomfortable or isn’t suitable for an occasion, it can make you feel less than you should.  

What if you had worms and clods of dust all over your body?  How would you feel.? In Job 7:5, Job describes this very condition. He had so many negative things hit him all at once.  By all worldly standards he could have felt very badly about himself and in an irrecoverable funk. Righteousness was on his side:

I put on righteousness, and it clothed me: my judgment was as a robe and a diadem. Job 29:14

The word ‘clothed’ in this verse is use seven times in the book of Job. This is the 5th use.  Righteousness put his mind in a different place. It was a grace place, gave him confidence and guarded his heart.

And that ye put on (clothe with) the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. Ephesians 4:24

Under the New Testament covenant,God has given us something to clothe us that is permanent. It works from the inside out. It is God’s wonderful gift of holy spirit. Righteousness is confidence, assurance and access to God without worrying about where we have failed or fallen short.  God’s love is so much bigger that we can ever imagine. When we get to the place of really believing it, we are released from anything that pulls us down. Job lived in the Old Testament time; we live in the New Testament time after the resurrection  and ascension of Jesus Christ. We are connected in a unique way to our God. There are plenty of negative things going on on around us, but God’s gift informs us and equips us to handle what ever comes up and produce fruit of the spirit when we utilize that gift and trust him:

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering (slow to anger), gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness(coachable), temperance (self-control): against such there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23

These qualities don’t need to be legislated like the works of the flesh. It is great to be around people who understand the spirit of God as it works in each of our lives. It is ‘church’ in the true Biblical sense of the word.

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