Pray. Listen. Do.

John 18:37

…Everyone who is of the truth listens to my (Jesus) voice.” ESV.

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When a crisis occurs in your life, how do you normally react? When you are at the end of your rope for solutions, where do you turn to? When no one seems to understand you or care, where do you go for support?

We are all human with similar needs, desires, and responses. How we react to adverse situations over time is typically a byproduct of a learned response. Whether we have a violent temper, a foul mouth tongue, or a beaten-up self-image, there are multiple responses as there are people. However, one response has proven over and over again to work most effectively when given the chance. When one turns the matter over to our Creator and watch how He reveals His love and care for you, then you learn the power of praying, listening, and doing.

The Kingdom of God operates through the heart of its citizens. Unless one is in contact with the Lord of the House, one doesn’t really reap the benefits of having a personal relationship with the King. When you have the King’s ear, you have someone who can make the difference in everything you do. So, when you learn to listen and do what your King suggests, you have a very good source of knowing what is best. Therefore, stop your busyness and explore all the other possibilities you haven’t considered.

Most of us start with the doing phase. We focus on what must we do. Instead our focus needs to be on leaning more on Him through prayer. And in our prayer, we need to spend more time listening than speaking. The Spirit already knows the best solution for your dilemma. We only have to learn to pray, listen, and then do.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
Great Business Emulates a Good God
Be Radical…Follow Christ!
Simply The Messenger
Unequally Married

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What Do We Gain By Prayer?

 

What is the Almighty, that we should serve him

? And what profit do we get if we pray to him?’ Job 21:15

prayer 6

A better question is not what you gain, but what are you losing out on? If you are satisfied with your current experience in life, why want more? Though if you are tired and feel beaten, maybe it’s because you are trying too hard.

Ever notice when learning a new skill, the many ups and downs you may experience until you slowly become steady in your performance. When you finally arrive at the place where you are a master of your craft, only then do you realize the difference between being an amateur and a professional.

Ever notice how today’s luxury become tomorrow’s necessity? One of my first cars didn’t have air conditioning nor a radio. Yet today both are common items found in each vehicle. Before smart phones, we managed to communicate and survive. Yet after becoming proficient with the I-phone, we couldn’t live without it.

The same is true with prayer.

Imagine a married couple that rarely communicated. How would you rate such a marriage? When you compare such a marriage with one where both mates continue to share ideas and experiences, which would you prefer? In most cases, we would want the one where the relationship was strong; where there is mutual respect, love, and submittal. The relationship would build upon each other and help each side to grow and taste the best of the human experience. There is a great joy when two people become one new entity.

Isn’t that true with our heavenly Dad? Isn’t prayer simply the means for us to communicate with our heavenly Father? To strengthen the bond between each of us? To share life’s experience with one another? Until we realize that prayer is simply relating with God, we may never come to the place where God wants us to be. Whether we have a prayer closet, a prayer chair, or a prayer bike, the location is not as important as we talk and listen to our Creator. For when we do, his character, attributes, and favor oozes out of the relationship to the point where one wonders how come we didn’t start talking to our heavenly mate much earlier in life.

So quit making new year resolutions to pray more. Instead just pray wherever, whenever, for whatever. Like a marriage improves when two people spend more time communicating with each, so it is with our Triune God. There is so much more to gain when one loses oneself in pray with our heavenly Dad.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Executive Director & Founder
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!

More Prayer, Greater Opportunities, Better Choices

“And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight,” Philippians 1:9 NIV

PRAY 34

Want to improve your love life? Your career? Your financial house?

Pray!

Prayer is the means we commune with the Great Designer. The same Being who is Love, who enjoys work, and knows our basic necessities as a human being.

His desire is to share His life in you, with you, and through you. But he is respective of your boundaries. He will not force you to comply with his desires. Rather he wants you to willfully choose to be in a meaningful relationship with Him.

Prayer is the means he designed for that purpose. It is heaven’s cell phone.
You have direct contact with your heavenly Dad who wants his children to succeed in life.

It doesn’t take a college degree, an introduction by a high ranking official, or a specific position for him to hear you. It only takes a willing heart. A heart that wants to be in a relationship. A heart that wants to learn and grow in the relationship.

As you venture into the area of prayer, you will discover a new addiction. One that helps you view life through the same eyes of the Man-God that walked the earth 2,000 years ago. You will begin to see opportunities that weren’t there before. You will make choices with a more long-term horizon. You will experience the joy of walking in the presence of your heavenly Dad.

It happens when you live a prayer-full life.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Founder & Executive Director
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Praying in Agreement

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. Romans 8:26 ESV

pray 35

Ever run out of words when you pray? Not quite sure how to phrase it for God so he may clearly understand what you seek? Maybe you are putting too much emphasis on the words and not enough on Jesus Christ?

We are encouraged to know that the Holy Spirit intercedes for us to make our position clear for God(Romans 8:26). In fact, the book of Hebrews states that Jesus is our High Priest and likewise intercedes on our behalf to the Father (Hebrews 2:17,4:15). How awesome is that?!

God knows what is best for us before we even ask. He also knows our request before we make it. And he also knows the consequences of our request better than we can ever imagine.

Depending on the season of our life, prayer takes on different avenues. In our early walk, we pray and it seems God answers all our small requests. I call this the time of building trust.

Then comes the time when God begins to answer our prayers not as we request, but in a different manner. We accept. Maybe disappointed, but yet thankful. It is only later in life we can look back and appreciate God’s reply rather than our own wishes. Than as our prayer life grows, we begin to spend time communicating with God on a constant basis. We thank him. We ask him to bless the person we just met. We ask for his intervention on a sick friend. Over time we begin to view life more through God’s eyes.

Our prayer life changes from asking him for “whatever” to seeking His viewpoint. Our prayers become more to align our heart in agreement with His purpose. Since this life is His Story and we are the characters in His plot, we slowly begin to accept our role and gladly join him on His adventure through time and space.

Like any healthy parent-child relationship, we are thankful that our parent seeks to care for us until we are ready to care for ourselves. In that process, we are given leeway to make decisions and bear the consequences of our actions within the boundaries of a family unit. Generally we learn to fail, grow, and experience life in a relatively safe environment. Doesn’t God do the same for us?

Prayer is the means that allows us to communicate with our Heavenly Parent. He wants us to make suggestions and learn from the consequences of how to best live for eternity. When we are transparent with Him, it allows Him to become more real and influential in our life. Prayer helps build the intimate relationship between a child and parent. Our heavenly Parent knows what is best for us now and through eternity. He is only giving us the leeway to effectively learn and prepare ourselves to care for oneself and others in the world tomorrow.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Founder & Executive Director
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

 

 

Walking Daily in His Presence

PRAY 4

Do we invest as much time in prayer as we like to?  Or are most of our prayer time the convenience brand?  Most the time, as it relates to food, the convenience brand costs more and provides the least amount of nourishment.  Is that how our prayer and spiritual life has become?

Remember in our early walk with the Triune God where we would schedule at least thirty minutes in prayer upon rising and again before retiring to bed in the evening?  Most of that time of course we probably prayed about our world and the people in our little world.  As we matured though, don’t we now find ourselves spending more time communicating in prayer during the entire day?  While commuting in traffic, or standing in line at the grocery store, or just in between projects at work,  don’t we tend to thank God, or ask for His intervention in a specific circumstance, or wisdom to deal with the situation at hand, or whatever else that may occur during the day?

Though the first Person we speak with in the morning and the last Person we speak with at the end of the day is our Heavenly Dad, those prayers are more like loving “good morning” and “good evening” chit-chats with the rest of the family.  Yet God knows our heart.

How does one become prayed-up?  Prayer use to be a daily ritual for many of us.  Now it is a daily discipline.  The difference between ritual and discipline is a fine one.  A ritual is typically doing something to earn favor with God whereas a discipline is placing oneself before God to seek His answer.  It really is a matter of attitude and heart.  Maybe when it comes to prayer, it is likewise an attitude of the heart.  Prayer is not something we keep score at; it is communion with the Greatest Lover and Provider: the Creator and Master of the Universe.  It’s walking and living in His presence every single minute.  It’s realizing that He is watching at all times.  It’s knowing that He cares about us and the people we are with.  It’s requesting His intervention in the lives of others.  It’s focusing on His work in progress.

If being prayed-up means total communion with God at all times, than Amen.  If it is trying to pick our self up by our bootstraps, than good luck.  We will need it because God wants us to become totally involved with Him.

Luck is life without God; blessings is life with God.  Wouldn’t we rather live a blessed life rather than a lucky one?  Luck will eventually end, whereas blessings will eternally continue with Him.  As a disciple of His, we pray in His presence all day.  That is how we define being prayed-up.

OUR PRAYER

PRAY 9

Our Heavenly Dad, thank you for giving us prayer.  Thank you for introducing us to you.  Thank you for sharing your Truth and Your bountifulness with us each and every day.  Thank you for wanting to develop a personal, close relationship with us.

Help us to continue in prayer and communion with you each and every day, every hour, and every minute whenever possible.  Help us to be aware of your presence in our life each and every moment.  Help us to live our life totally in your awesome presence.

Rejuvenate this life each day for your glory and service.  Let people come to you through this life.  Let everything we do be done truly for you.  Let us live and walk with you each and every day.  Amen.

Yours In Christ,

Dr. Mike

Coach, Consultant, and Encourager

Author of Great Business Emulates a Good God
Portal: Be Radical…EnjoyLifeInChrist.com

Sainthood is a Joint Venture in Prayer

prayer 3

Where does our best source of encouragement come from?  When we don’t know where to go for help or support, where is our hand held most securely?  When we are discouraged or discontented, where does our spark of hope be lit? What is one of life’s natural highs that bathes the soul with rushing waters of refreshment? What changes hearts, minds, and at times even circumstances? What elevates the soul to heaven?

We are of course speaking about prayer; the privileged discipline that allows us to have a one-on-one heartfelt, mindful, and soulful communion with the Living Creator of life. Not only our prayers, but the prayers of other disciples around the world. Do you ever wonder whose prayer really made the difference regarding that one situation? Was it yours? Or was it the prayer of that unknown widow who heard about it via a friend that God nod His head in final approval? Whosoever prayer it was doesn’t really matter, because sainthood is a joint venture. Somewhere we all come to realize that our spiritual success is not only built on our relationship with our Heavenly Dad, but it also rides on the help of others. There is great inner joy to know that real saints are praying for you and your successful journey through time.

Likewise, when we look back in our life, we may realize that many people have prayed for us throughout our life. Our parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, brothers, sisters, neighbors, friends, church members, priests, ministers, nuns, teachers, counselors, gas station attendants, newspaper delivery persons, coaches, bosses, and whoever else you may have come in contact with throughout your journey in time. The point being that many people have cared about you even though you may have never realized it until now.

There are many people who have already learned about the powerful blessings given through prayer before we even heard or seen it in action. Prayer is a gift that we are given to bless others, and others have been given to bless even more others. And the cycle continues, with the central source of all blessing starting from our heavenly Dad and finishing with our heavenly Dad. Paul taught that we should pray without ceasing. This means that during the day in whatever circumstances or situation, we are to ask the Source of strength and make our requests, petitions, thankfulness, and praise known to Him. One day we may be all surprised to find out how many prayers where being offered to Him at the same time from other people in the same room with no one truly being aware of all the sources but God Himself.  All the praise and thanks go to Him. He developed the means for us to pray. He has taught us how to pray. He hears our prayers. He acts on our prayers. All the glory and honor goes to Him as He does it His way and in His time. We are simply joint-servants in this journey with Him. Praises to Him!

OUR PRAYER

PRAYER 1

Dear Eternal Dad, thank you for always being available to hear our prayers. We don’t understand how you do it, and we don’t know how you make it work, but you care and want to hear our hearts and minds in prayer. You have created it. Help us to practice it, to live it, and to become effective with it.  Let our prayers come straight to you without delay. Act on them without delay. But always, answer our prayers in the best way possible. We know many of our prayers are childlike, self-centered, and without soulful diligence. Forgive us and change us. Let our heart commune with yours. Let the passion flow between us. Be our lover. Let everything in our being communicate with you.

Open the doors of heaven and glorify your name by answering the prayers of your saints and servants. Add our words with those of our brothers and sisters. Let our petitions and praises make a joyful noise throughout heaven. Teach us what we do not know about prayer. Help us be a great prayer warrior for your kingdom.  Jesus we thank you. Amen.

Yours In Christ,

Dr. Mike

Coach, Consultant, and Speaker

Author of Great Business Emulates a Good God
Portal: Be Radical…EnjoyLifeInChrist.com

 

Calluses on the Knees Are Our Medals of Honor

PRAYER 1
A minister once made the comment that “Christ-followers are easily identified by the calluses on their knees.” As disciples of His, we have learned the power and refreshment of prayer. We, like the apostle Paul, have learned to pray unceasingly all day. Whether we are driving in the car during rush hour, walking around the block, or sitting in a restaurant, we find ourselves making short petitions to our Heavenly Dad. However, we have also learned the necessity of private prayer away from the outside world and alone with our Dad. This is the type of prayer when we humbly in respect and awe bow down on our knees before the presence of our Lord and make supplications, petitions and plain talk with our Dad. This is quiet time to speak what is on our heart. This is communion time.
When we spend time on our knees, we invest in our relationship with our Heavenly Creator. We acknowledge His superiority and lordship in our life. We also acknowledge our dependency and faithfulness to Him. It takes time to pray this way. In our hyper active lifestyles, we find our lives busy to make the time to pray in this fashion. We justify it by saying we can pray anywhere, anyplace, at anytime. This may be true. However, just like having a diet of fast foods everyday for breakfast, lunch and dinner, our health will suffer. Likewise, if we live our spiritual life with the same mentality, we will find our spiritual life and relationship with our Dad suffering. We know. In our younger days when life had fewer responsibilities, we could probably find more time to pray on our knees mornings and evenings. As our life becomes more demanding, we find ourselves too tired to pray in such a fashion. We know God understands. But, we have also acknowledged that He deserves our best. In our younger days, our prayer life was probably more mechanical. It was us probably practicing the disciplines for discipline sake and not for the real reason we pray. We could easily pray for an hour on our knees without any outside interruptions or demands. But in our self-righteous way, we probably would pat ourselves on the back because of our superior spiritual practices. Today though, when we pray on the knees, we probably pray as long as our knees and joints are able to handle the strain and before we are interrupted by the outside world. We again probably don’t count the time anymore but have learned to enjoy the intimate fellowship with our Heavenly Dad. It’s investing time with our Lover, Provider, and Soul-Mate. It’s speaking from our heart and listening with our soul. It’s humbly asking for personal help and praising Him for His Majesty. It’s petitioning Him on behalf of others, and asking Him how we may best serve His Kingdom. It is waiting with expectation and excitement to see how He is going to answer. No matter what the answer, He knows best. We know that He stills loves us and will always be with us, even when we stray from Him. We are thankful He has called us to be His Disciple.

OUR PRAYER

PRAY 8

Our Caring Dad! Thank you for prayer. Thank you for creating a vehicle that allows us to commune with you. Your ways of living are so simple but so effective. Thank you for always listening to us. Even when our prayers are selfish and self-centered, your love is patient and understanding. You don’t harass us, but you slowly change us to become like you.
Thank you for revealing your purpose of prayer. Help us to pray like Jesus prayed. While we pray, change our heart, mind, and soul to become like yours. While we pray, transform us into your image. While we pray, let us see the situation through your eyes. While we pray, let us see your answers. Answer our prayers, not as we always request it, but as you know what is best for all parties involved. Help us in prayer to focus on expressing your life through us in any and all circumstances. If necessary, bless us with difficult circumstances that challenge us to cry out to you for help. There is no greater joy than to see you glorified through answered prayer. Though we may want our circumstances changed for the better, you know it is more important to change our heart, mind, and soul to be greater than the surrounding environment. Thank you for hearing our prayers. Let your glory shine. Jesus we ask. Amen.

Your Consultant & Coach for Christ-Centered
Business Owners & Executives

Dr. Mike

Author of Great Business Emulates a Good God
Website: EnjoyLifeInChrist.com