Is God Working Through Me?

Is God Working Through Me?

by Janis Cox

Because-you-prayed

I read an interesting statement in The Prayer of Jabez?

If God is working through us that doesn’t mean in association with us.

Through is an interesting term. It reminds me of the scripture in Zechariah where we are told that not by might nor by power but by My Spirit will God work through us.

Our God specializes in working through normal people who believe in a supernatural God who will do this work through them.

This will be my path for the next months – to spend more time in prayer – as I beg for more influence and responsibility so I can honour God.

If I want to be a follower of Jesus I need to trust Him to do miracles; to open doors; to make divine appointments.

So I am praying and believing.

You will know beyond doubt that God has opened heaven’s storehouses because you prayed.

I would love to pray with you or for you.
Please contact me at Under the Cover of Prayer.

Here is a wonderful reminder that God will open heaven’s gates if we pray and believe.

Here are a few words from this song Did You Feel the Mountains Tremble? by Matt Redman.

Fling wide, you heavenly gates
Prepare the way of the risen Lord

And here is the video.

Prayer:

Lord, I know that I have to allow you to work through me. For that reason I give you my whole life to do as you wish. Lead me, guide me, push me. Open those gates and may I expand my territory for You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Tweetables:

God has opened heaven’s storehouses because you prayed. Find out how. (tweet this)

Do you want God to open heaven’s gates? (tweet this)

All quotes today come from The Prayer of Jabez by Bruce Wilkinson

Janis Cox

Janis Cox - Author and Illustrator

Janis Cox

Janis, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. A writer since 2003, Janis co-ordinates a group blog called Under the Cover of Prayer. She is also a contributor to a group blog called Family and Faith Matters.

Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. She is the author and watercolour illustrator. For more information visit Janis on her website He Cares for You. She is a member of The Word Guild and Inscribe Writers Fellowship..

 

Posted in Contributor, Faith, Hearing from God, How To Pray, Janis Cox, Why Pray? | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Prayer is About Believing Too!

Prayer is About Believing Too!

by Tanya

Prayer Includes Believing

From Free Digital Photos.Net

A lot of times when we think about prayer, we think about it as asking God for something.

When we are sick… a loved one is sick… we need financial assistance… we have family problems… these are all times when we turn to prayer.

But a lot of times we stop here.

Have you heard the story about the little girl whose family prayed for rain? She was the only one who left with her umbrella.

SHE BELIEVED.

When we pray, sure we might as God for something, but prayer doesn’t stop with the asking.

Prayer also includes believing.

“Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you (Mark 11:24, NASB).

When we pray, let us also believe in the power of our infinite God of love and grace, to grant us that which is best for us. If we truly believe, just like that little girl who took the umbrella because she believed that the rain would fall, we will confidently step out in faith PREPARED for our “rain” to fall.

Tweetables:

Prayer includes believing. Mark 11:24 (tweet this)

 

Tanya – from God’s Character

Tanya is a child of God, wife, stay at home mom and homeschooler. She loves the Lord and loves telling people about who He is. By God’s grace her husband and she intend to live out Joshua’s statement “but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord”. And so her greatest desire is to see her Lord face to face and along with her family, join in the joyous strains of triumphant voices praising our Lord and King. Check out her blog at God’s Character.

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What is Meditation on God’s Law?

What is Meditation on God’s Law?

by Janet Sketchley

What-is-meditation-

Thanks to Free Digital Photos.net

 

But they delight in the law of the Lord,
meditating on it day and night (Psalm 1:2, NLT*).

Surely the psalmist doesn’t expect us to go around mentally reciting the Ten Commandments and all the extra bits of legalese that Moses added?

That doesn’t sound like something we could delight in. It sounds… like cramming for a test. Dry. To be honest, it sounds boring. And discouraging. After all, looking at all those requirements, knowing we’re human and can never satisfy the Law… not a good scene. It reminds me of another verse:

The human spirit can endure a sick body,
but who can bear a crushed spirit (Proverbs 18:14, NLT*)?

Let’s think for a minute.

What is the law of the Lord?

If it’s not the list of dos and don’ts, what is it?

I think in this context, it’s the very character of God. It’s who He is, how He conducts Himself, and yes, what He requires of us if we’re living for His glory.

Doesn’t that change the picture? Doesn’t it sound like prayer? Like something we can delight in?

There’s no hardship in spending time thinking about the God who loves us, remembering different aspects of who He is and what He’s done for us. It leads naturally into worship and prayer. It draws us nearer to Him and strengthens our faith.

Meditating on God can also lead to examining our own lives, seeing where we need to realign ourselves to His ways.

It might even hurt a bit when we recognize how far off-track some parts of our lives may be, but it’s not the spirit-crushing sense of failure I mentioned above.

It can’t be, because we’re also looking at who God is. That means we’ll remember His promise to forgive our sins and clean us up. We’ll remember His faithfulness, and that He’ll never leave us. We’ll remember He loves us.

That kind of meditating on God’s law is something delightful indeed!

Tweetables: 

Meditating on God’s law doesn’t have to be boring. (tweet this)

It’s good to think about the God who loves us. (tweet this)

Meditating on God can also lead to examining our own lives, seeing where we need to realign ourselves to His ways. (tweet this)

*New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Janet Sketchley

Janet Sketchley facebook 180x180

Janet writes about the tenacity of God. Her novel, Heaven’s Prey, released November 1, 2013 from Choose NOW Publishing. You can find her on her website, Janet Sketchley.

Posted in Contributor, Hearing from God, How To Pray, Janet Sketchley | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Am I Spinning My Wheels?

Am I Spinning My Wheels?

by Janis Cox

Are-you-spinning-your-wheels-

Thanks to Photo Bucket for the Photo Stuck Vehicle.

With all the snow up north this winter I thought about a time when I became very stuck in that white stuff.

As I went on a mission to find furniture for a group of refugees we worked with, I drove into a parking lot. The snow in the lot didn’t look very deep. However when I tried to back up, I became stuck.

I couldn’t go forward or backward – I kept spinning my wheels.

People came to help. I would put the car into low gear and then they would push. I would put the car into reverse and they would push from the front. I tried rocking the car back and forth using the gears. Nothing – the car kept spinning.

Suddenly I remembered my hubby’s words, “Don’t forget you have automatic traction on this car. If you have trouble on a hill, take off the traction.”

Well this wasn’t a hill but I needed to take off the auto track, because every time I would slip a little, the car automatically braked. I took off the auto track and with one push out I came.

Do we carry an auto tracking device? Do we spin our wheels?

I think we do. I think my auto track device keeps me from moving by keeping me doing the same old thing. I am going nowhere and spinning my wheels.

What keeps me moving forward?
What keeps me from following my dreams?
What keeps me from following Jesus’ leading?

In the next few weeks I plan to share what I have been hearing from God for my own life and maybe what is keeping me from expanding my territory?

Satan always want to distract us from the work God wants us to do.

Have you noticed this? Do you have an auto traction device that keeps putting brakes on God’s plans for your life?

Let’s start a discussion either here in the comments or on Facebook or on Twitter.

Answer the question:

Are you spinning your wheels?

Let’s find out what auto track we have turned on that is keeping us from moving with God.

If you want God to move, sometimes you have to make a move. ~ Mark Batterson in The Circle Maker

But Mark also says this:

If you keep trying, you are not failing … God in honored when you don’t give up. ~ Mark Batterson in The Circle Maker

Prayer:

Lord, there is something holding me back from expanding my territory for Your glory. Show me what it is. Release it – if it is something that you need me to do. Take off the auto brakes. Help me to move forward and follow your plans and lead. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

Tweetables:

Do we carry an auto tracking device? Do we spin our wheels? (tweet this)

There should be nothing holding me back from fulfilling the plans you have for me. (tweet this)

What keeps me from following my dreams? What keeps me from following Jesus’ leading? (tweet this)

Here is one of my favourite praise songs. Holding Nothing Back by Jesus Culture.

Janis Cox

Janis Cox - Author and Illustrator

Janis, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. A writer since 2003, Janis co-ordinates a group blog called Under the Cover of Prayer. She is also a contributor to a group blog called Family and Faith Matters.

Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. She is the author and watercolour illustrator. For more information visit Janis on her website He Cares for You. She is a member of The Word Guild andInscribe Writers Fellowship.

Posted in Contributor, Faith, Hearing from God, How To Pray, Janis Cox | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Am I Responsible?

Am I Responsible?

by Susan Hitchman

Am-I-Responsible

Wikipedia picture

A twinge of conscience pricked my heart as I walked past the older woman. The street was thronging with people coming and going from Seattle’s Pike Street Market, and panhandlers were everywhere. But as I stepped past her and stood with my family waiting for the crosswalk light to turn, I saw her wearily rest her head against the light pole.

Was it a ploy?

The other panhandlers were bold, flaunting cardboard signs linking love for God with supporting their marijuana habits. It was easier walking past them than her. But as our walk light lit up, I stepped out and crossed the street with my family. I was a visitor to Seattle.

Was I responsible?

The next morning as I sat reading my Bible and praying in a quiet corner of the hotel lobby, the picture of the street woman kept filling my mind. I saw myself doing what I should have done, my arm reaching across her shoulders as I simply asked, “Are you O.K?” I was looking into her eyes, granting her the dignity of comfort in human suffering.

I was overwhelmed with the awareness of my selfishness.

As I inwardly moaned in repentance, I asked for forgiveness. That opportunity to show God’s love to an aching heart was gone. Would God’s mercy grant me another opportunity to do it right?

The young King Josiah was in a predicament not unlike mine. Upon hearing the recently discovered ‘Book of the Law’ read to him, he too was overwhelmed with an awareness of sin. Visions of the idolatries and cruelties his kingly forbears had committed rose in his mind.  He was more expressive than me, tearing his robes and weeping, taking steps to inquire through a prophetess the LORD’s verdict.

In this story we’re given an incredible glimpse of God’s perspective. We’re told that God observed that Josiah’s “heart was responsive and (he) humbled (him)self before the LORD”.

“Because you…wept in my presence, I have heard you”, God declares (2 Kings 22:19, NIV).

We’re not told that Josiah had actually prayed in so many words, yet God heard him. Josiah had wept in remorse and repentance. He had been responsive to God’s Spirit revealing Himself and His commands through His Word. He had humbled himself and took steps to repair the situation.

Perhaps you too have wept a tear or two over your awareness of failings in your life. Take heart. That is one form of prayer. If your heart is responsive to His convicting Word and you humble yourself in repentance, there is great hope. God has heard you and is willing to help you turn your tears into actions of obedience.

“Weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5, NIV).

Go ahead and cry; it speaks volumes to God.

Tweetables:

Go ahead and cry; it speaks volumes to God. (tweet this)

I was overwhelmed with the awareness of my selfishness. (tweet this)

Sue Hitchman

Susan Hitchman

Sue  seeks to integrate the adventure of following Christ with her roles as wife, mother of five, co-leader of a women’s Bible study group and parent prayer group, and retreat speaker.  She is a member of The Word Guild and NCWA. Outdoor pursuits (cycling, gardening, hiking, & kayaking) remind her of God’s creative bent and constant presence. She writes to encourage others in their journey of faith in God.  Visit her blog at: Word Made Flesh

Posted in Contributor, Faith, How To Pray, Susan Hitchman | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

What are The Icks?

What are The Icks ?

by Brenda Wood

Moses_Red_Sea_JPEG_1024-web

Thanks to free bible images.org – Words are Brenda Wood’s

I laughed out loud when I saw the cartoon.  The Israelites were in the centre of a major miracle, crossing the Red Sea on dry ground as banks of water towered over their heads. One person looked down and cried, “Ick! A fish!”  

It made me think of the lovely party I had attended the day before. Unfortunately I was seated beside an “Ick”. The food was too spicy,  her children never visited, and so on…..and so on…….and so on….!

It only takes one doesn’t it? One negative crank whose negative comments spoil a party. One undisciplined child who will have what it wants or else. One seeker of all that is negative quickly poisons the attitude of a crowd.

Only a few months after the Red Sea crossing Moses found himself leading an entire crowd of “Icks”, each and every one polluted with the spirit of complaining.

The whole company of Israel complained against Moses and Aaron there in the wilderness. (Exodus 16:2, The Message).

Any “Icks” where we live? God forbid that any of them would be us! By the way, the tried and true method of tuning Icks into Likes is prayer.

May God help us catch His vision instead of looking for herring and catfish along our path.

Tweetable:

Any “Icks” where we live? God forbid that any of them would be us! (tweet this)

May God help us catch His vision instead of looking for herring and catfish along our path. (tweet this)

Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

Posted in Brenda Wood, Faith, Thankfulness | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

What Passage of Scripture Has God Put on Your Heart?

What Passage of Scripture Has God Put on Your Heart?

by Janis Cox

God-Speaks-Through-Scripture

A number of years ago I attended a Spirit-Filled weekend retreat with 40 women. We went away to a monastery, with our speaker, Ruth Conard. I knew that God wanted to use this time to speak to me. I had been praying for this. And He answered me.

God spoke through Ruth’s talks, through friendships and through our quiet times.

But He also talked through a Scripture passage.

After one break time we returned to the conference area to find slips of paper upside down on each chair. As I chose a chair, I discovered this passage on my slip of paper, “Feed my lambs”, John 21:15.

I had just begun to journal and this Scripture spurred me on to start writing for Jesus. After this conference I started my first blog. I have continued to blog ever since.

In order to feed His lambs:

I needed to go deeper into His Word;
I needed to read more and more;
I needed to pray more.

I continue my early morning daily study patterns because Jesus has called me to FEED HIS LAMBS.

What passage has God put on your heart?

Tweetables:

God speaks through Scripture passages. What passage has God put on your heart? (tweet this)

I needed to go deeper into His Word;
I needed to read more and more;
I needed to pray more. (tweet this)

Would love you to come with me and my He Cares for You Community by joining my newsletter.

Join He Cares for You

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Janis Cox Newsletter

Janis Cox - Author and Illustrator

Janis, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. A writer since 2003, Janis co-ordinates a group blog called Under the Cover of Prayer. She is also a contributor to a group blog called Family and Faith Matters.

Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. She is the author and watercolour illustrator. For more information visit Janis on her website He Cares for You. She is a member of The Word Guild andInscribe Writers Fellowship.

Posted in answered prayer, Contributor, Janis Cox | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

What Happens When You Pray to be Used?

Please welcome Melanie Fischer today – our new guest blogger.

What Happens When You Pray to be Used?

by Melanie Fischer

Lord,-use-me-on-this-trip

My pen was the ticket to a two week adventure in one of Nunavut’s fly-in communities. A long-time friend invited me along to her native land to document the Inuit culture for promotional material.

As I tucked a decorative scribbler into my carry-on luggage, I prayed,

“Lord, use me on this trip.”

We covered many miles across Canada to the Southern tip of Baffin Island. I covered many more miles with the end of my pen as I captured the culture and many exciting stories.

The story that earned the title “highlight of the trip” went like this:

Artists in the community bubbled with excitement as they prepared for the art sale. My stay was almost over, so I was thrilled to be able to attend. With my camera and camcorder in hand I sauntered from table to table, snapping pictures and chatting. I approached a table with a jolly Inuit lady and a man who resembled Santa.

The couple was especially friendly and generous in sharing stories. They paused to ask where I was from. “Close to Edmonton,” I stated. They gasped and explained that their son, Tommy, lived in a group-home there. Saddened that he was lonely and without family, they asked if I would stop and say hi for them.

I glanced down at my video camera, “would you like to say hi to him yourself?” I asked. They enthusiastically accepted the idea. The mom stared into the camera and delivered a message in her native tongue. I did not understand her words but I empathized with her tears.

The father then gazed at the video screen; a thick French accent buttered the phrase “I love you Tommy.” He was a man of few words, but he didn’t need them to deliver the message that he deeply missed his son. He quickly wiped away tears then nodded to indicate he was done. I closed up my camera then received contact information.

On my way home I had a one night layover in Iqaluit. As I approached the hotel front desk, a cheery young man asked me where I had come from. When I told him he laughed and said that was where he was from. “Maybe you met my mom and dad,” he chuckled.

He described his mom as a large Inuit lady and his dad…a Frenchman with a white beard. “Your brother is Tommy!” I exclaimed. He clasped his hand to his heart and spilled out “You know Tommy?” I told him how I was delivering a message from his parents to his brother.

Before I could even complete the question, “would you like to send him a message?” he stared impatiently at my camera, waiting for it to turn on.

The next day I arrived in Edmonton. A shy Inuit fellow sat across from me at our meeting place. He played the videos over and over, straining to hear every word.

You never know what will happen when you pray the prayer “Lord use me!”

Tweetables:

You never know what will happen when you pray the prayer “Lord use me!” (click to tweet)

Have you ever prayed the words, “Lord, use me”. (click to tweet)

Melanie Fischer

Melanie-Fischer-web

Melanie is a writer and blogger. She has recently discovered that perhaps God has not created technology to punish us, but rather to propel His message into the world. She is passionate in sharing this newfound knowledge and equipping others to live their purpose. This has led her to recently start up the endeavor “Hungry for Purpose.” You can visit her blog and see what else she is up to on her website www.hungryforpurpose.com Melanie is a member of Inscribe Writers Fellowship.

Posted in answered prayer, Faith, Guest Bloggers, Prayer Experiences, Specific Prayer Requests | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Are You Running on Empty?

Please welcome a new contributor to Under the Cover of Prayer, Joy Lenton. 

Are You Running on Empty?

Are-you-running-on-Empty---Joy-Lenton

by Joy Lenton

A notice flashed across the screen, catching me off-guard in the midst of activity. A warning. Power low, battery at only 10% ~ oh dear! Puzzled, I gazed at the wire connected to my laptop as it had been for hours, gave it a tug, pulled it out and pushed it in again (very technical), jiggled it a bit and sighed as nothing changed on the display. So I did what I usually did when in doubt…and called my husband through.

He soon assessed the situation. I definitely had all the right wires in place, but I had failed to realise  the plug had been inadvertently switched off. Oops!

And it made me think..do I heed the warning signs of fatigue in my body signalling a need to rest and recharge?

Am I conscious of staying plugged in to The Source of all might, strength and power Himself?

Do I try to run on empty as I go through the day and neglect to refuel on His word in the same way I need to have regular meal breaks to sustain me?

How easy it is to lose track of God during our days, turn deaf ears to His voice, try to live by our own strength alone.

All may appear to be going swimmingly for a while, but we’re actually depriving ourselves of vital energy, nourishment and guidance to equip us to live life well and to the fullest.

Will you join me in seeking to pause and rectify that right now as we turn our thoughts again to God’s will and ways?

Dear Lord,

You have designed us to live in complete dependence on You, not to deprive us of any good thing but to ensure we have all the resources we need to live as You intend us to. Remind us to stay tuned to Your voice, to turn to You as each day begins and seek Your face. We know that time spent in Your Presence is never wasted.

Only You can fully equip and enable us to be ready for all that lies ahead.
Only You are able to offer all the energy, strength and wisdom we need.

Lead and guide us by Your word.
Grant us hearts that are hungry to hear from You.

Provide us with all that we need to also help, support and encourage others.

To Your praise and glory. Amen.

Tweetables:

Am I conscious of staying plugged in to The Source of all might, strength and power Himself? (click to tweet)

How easy it is to lose track of God during our days, turn deaf ears to His voice. (click to tweet)

Joy's-bio-photo-web

Joy Lenton is a grace-dweller and storyteller who weaves words out of the fabric of her days. Her desire is to seek the poetic in the prosaic and look for the eternal in the temporal.
As an M.E and chronic illness sufferer, who is also recovering from a painful past, she writes with a heart for the hurting and to support and encourage others who are struggling with life and faith issues.
She is  a member of the Association of Christian Writers and Fellowship of Christian bloggers.
You can connect with her at her blogs, ‘Words of Joy’ or ‘Poetry Joy’, and on Twitter, Facebook, Google + or Pinterest.

 

Posted in answered prayer, Joy Lenton | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

When Do We Pray?

When Do We Pray?

by Janis Cox

Ukraine-Russia

This week has been a time when all Christians need to be praying for peace between Ukraine and Russia. News reports make things seem terrifying. But we know that our God is in control.

Rather than fear, we need to pray for all of those involved in the situation.

Since I am a short term missionary with International Messengers I received urgent messages that our friends, who work in the Ukraine, would appreciate our prayers. And I know that all of my readers are interested in praying for others.

When you read news items, hear of conflicts, know of someone who is sick – these are calls to prayer. If you don’t think you will remember, write them down. But do make sure you pray.

But you, God, shield me on all sides;
You ground my feet, you lift my head high;
With all my might I shout up to God,
His answers thunder from the holy mountain (Psalm 3:3-4, The Message).

We can call to our God, who hears our prayers. Let’s lift our voices together so a peaceful resolution to this problem can be found. Protect all those in both countries, Russia and the Ukraine.

Be watchful – God will show you when and how to pray.

Prayer:

Lord, please give a calmness of spirit to our brothers and sisters in the Ukraine and Russia. Speak into the hearts of leaders so they know that a peaceful resolution works best for all concerned. Bring wisdom to all those involved. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

Tweetables:

Be watchful – God will show you when and how to pray. (click to tweet)

Calls to prayer:  news items,  conflicts,  someone who is sick. #UTCOP (click to tweet)

Janis Cox

Janis Cox - Author and Illustrator

Janis, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. A writer since 2003, Janis co-ordinates a group blog called Under the Cover of Prayer. She is also a contributor to a group blog called Family and Faith Matters.

Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. She is the author and watercolour illustrator. For more information visit Janis on her website He Cares for You. She is a member of The Word Guild andInscribe Writers Fellowship.

Posted in Contributor, How To Pray, Janis Cox, Specific Prayer Requests | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments