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Sometimes Prayer is Just Standing

October 26th, 2011 9 comments

. . . and having done all, to standStand therefore . . . praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit . . . (Ephesians 6:13-18).

. . . Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which He will accomplish for you today. . .  (Exodus 14:13)

You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the LORD . . . (II Chronicles 20:17)

And the list of scriptures goes on and on – scriptures that tell us that sometimes prayer is simply to stand.  There are those times when having the right words to say isn’t what we need.  That’s when the power of His Word alive in us becomes our greatest prayer.  That’s when having our identity secure in Christ brings an undeniable shift in the atmosphere around us.

May I tell you a rather unspiritual little story that illustrates this?  My husband was a high school football coach for many years.  I enjoyed going to the games to cheer his team to victory and console the losses.  I was in the stadium cheering for his team one night.  A very loud and rude man was stationed about 15 rows above me.  From the beginning of the game, he yelled offensively using very foul language – all criticisms aimed at my husband’s coaching.  I listened to this through the first quarter, the second quarter and the third quarter.  Each quarter, he grew louder and more vulgar until by the beginning of the fourth quarter, I had had enough!  I stood up.  I turned around.  And I looked at the man.  Then, I thought, “Nancy, what are you doing?!  He’s so out of control that he might come down here and punch you in the nose!”  I had no words to say to that man.  All I could do was stand and look at him.  As I stood and watched him, he became so angry and then confused that he nearly imploded.  He finally gave up, folded his arms, closed his mouth and never made another sound the remainder of the game.

What happened that night?  That man was out of order and out of control.  His behavior was clearly wrong and a violation to all of us around him.  I stood in the power of what was right.  I certainly didn’t stand in my own power – I was scared!  And I stood secure in my identity – I was the coach’s wife!  I never said a word; I just stood there.  What was the result?  There was an undeniable shift in the atmosphere in that stadium.

 So, words can be good in prayer.  But sometimes prayer is just standing.

Categories: General Tags:

“I Am Blessed”

August 26th, 2011 4 comments


Note from Nancy McDaniel:  To impact people around us, sometimes we need put some action to our prayers.  One way is by proclaiming the blessings of God and the Good News of the Gospel. 

Read how Barbara Potts, Maryland Aglow State Prayer Coordinator, is proclaiming God’s blessing:

I have always been a bit challenged at how to effectively share the Gospel in a natural, easy fashion.  That is, until some time ago when I began to respond with, “I am blessed” to anyone who asked me how I was.  This response not only honors God but it prophesies into my life the blessing of God.  I know this response was a prompting from the Holy Spirit, as I have watched how God has used it. 

A couple of months ago I had an encounter with an unsaved neighbor which has mushroomed into a ministry. This person is a widow, and a rather sad person who has not previously responded to witnessing.  She asked me how I was, and when I responded with “I am blessed,” I knew that she interpreted this to mean that I didn’t have any problems and that everything was perfect and good.  So, later when I got home the Lord impressed upon me to write to her and tell her why I am so blessed.  This is what I said:

      I would like to expand upon my response to your inquiry, “How are you?” When I said, “I am blessed,” it was not a reflection of my life circumstances, but rather of my eternal security. (There are, quite frankly, some very sad things going on in my life right now.) Years ago, when I said “yes” to Jesus and made Him the Lord of my life, He did not promise me a life of happiness and ease. But He did promise to never leave me or forsake me, to be my shield and defender, my strength in weakness, and my joy in the midst of sorrow. To the widow He is a husband, to the sick He is the Healer, to the discouraged He is Hope, to the lost He is the Savior. To all (whether they acknowledge Him or not) He is the One, True and Living God, the Almighty Creator of the Universe, the King of kings and Lord of lords. And He Who is all of this, knows my name and how many hairs I have on my head. Even before I was conceived in my mother’s womb, He saw me. And even though I am imperfect and was full of sin, He has forgiven me and crowned me with glory and honor. His magnanimous love compelled Him to leave His place of glory in heaven and be born into the world He created to suffer at the hands of evil men and become a sacrifice for my sin. His love transcends understanding. There is nothing I can do to make Him love me any more or any less than He already does. He has paid the price for my redemption and now desires to have a personal relationship with me here and for eternity. And so because of these things: I AM BLESSED beyond measure!! My prayer is that you would know this blessing too. You can, if only you would ask… Say “yes” to Jesus today and He will reveal Himself to you in ways you cannot imagine. He will heal your heart and comfort your soul. He will empower you to live an abundant life full of hope and victory. When you receive Him as your Lord and Savior, nothing can separate you from His Love. He is ready and wanting to do these things for you. But you must invite Him into your heart and life.   —   What have you got to lose?

Remembering the Christian movie, “The Grace Card,” I had the idea to format this testimony on a piece of paper that folds to the size of a business card.  I carry a bunch in my purse.  Whenever anyone asks me how I am, I tell them “I am blessed.”  Then when I hand them money for my transaction, or shake their hand, I give them the “card” and say, “This tells you why I am so blessed and how you can be too.”  I have found that even Christians are blessed by it because it lifts them above life’s circumstances and reminds them who they are.

What an easy way to share the love and Good News of the Gospel!

Categories: General Tags:

Feeling Stuck?

August 5th, 2011 3 comments

The following blog was contributed by Jessica Wilson, Prayer Office Administrative Assistant:

So the other day I’m checking out the fabulous view in the window of my Seattle apartment, and I am struck by the clouds. On this clear, SUNNY day in Seattle (I know, I know, but it does happen, praise the Lord!) I get a wonderful view of large white, fluffy, cumulus clouds. This great weather has been going on the last few days and when it does I find myself sitting on the couch, beverage in hand, watching the clouds go by. I like to sit for a few minutes and just relax as I watch the shapes come and go, and view the trees swaying gently in the breeze. But on this particular day, there was a glitch:

The clouds weren’t moving!

The trees branches were moving. I could feel the wind blowing. But the clouds were not! Still as still could be, I felt like Evie from “Out of This World” and wondered if I had touched my two index fingers together, and if it really did stop time. Alas, it turns out I do not have time-stopping super powers, and I soon realized what the problem was. (This is rather important you see- for it was very disturbing to see clear evidence of wind, but no movement in the clouds!)

The problem was my perspective. The clouds weren’t moving left to right, or right to left- because they weren’t being blown that way. The clouds were actually moving toward me. I was at such an angle that it simply appeared that the clouds weren’t moving at all, because that was the only way I was seeing things. It reminded me that sometimes, we simply need to reposition ourselves.

When you feel stuck – Oops – you probably don’t ever feel that way. Ok, so, when I feel stuck this is a good reminder for me to reposition. Get a different view on things. And usually, a great place to start is to get out of 1st person mode, and start focusing on some other people. (Of course God should always be our first focus, and if He isn’t I tend to find that’s the source of my feeling “stuck” in the first place…)

It’s just good to know that things are always moving. They’re never still, they’re always in motion. If you don’t know that, or can’t see that, you will start to feel stuck in your situation. So get out, and get some good (Bible-based) perspective. Where do you start? Cry out in prayer.  Jeremiah 33:2-3 He says, “This is what the LORD says, he who made the earth, the LORD who formed it and established it—the LORD is his name:  ‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”  God is in control and has great and awesome plans for your life.  Who better to position you and get you unstuck?

Categories: General Tags:

The Mountain of Arts & Entertainment

May 20th, 2011 7 comments

The following article was contributed by Tony Hoyt:

Our desire is for God’s people (Aglow) to rise up as never before in taking back the Mountain of Arts and Entertainment:   For the world to see the expression of the creativity of God in all the art forms, from music to films, from television to books, from plays to fashion, to all forms of celebration in the arts.

Johnny Enlow states in his book, The Seven Mountain Mantle, I saw in a vision that the Lord has a whole treasure trove of golden movies available for His sons and daughters to access.  This treasure trove contains some of the best stories ever told to humanity.  There are epic stories of incredible adventure, romance, danger, and mystery – but all told from heaven’s standpoint and with heaven’s purposes.  The eyes of the Lord will begin to find those who are coming into Him and discovering the treasures of His heart.  The world cannot compete with the stories that will begin to be downloaded by His Josephs on this mountain.   This is the mountain where He will really show off.  This is the mountain where He will release amazing glory.

The world is ready and waiting for God’s people to take this mountain back.  Two examples are:

The film Secretariat, released in 2010, was a true story of a Triple Crown winner.  Secretariat was one of the greatest race horses in history.   The movie opened with Joel 2: 4-5 being quoted. Their appearance is like the appearance of horses; And like swift steeds, so they run.  With a noise like chariots over mountaintops they leap; Like the noise of a flaming fire that devours the stubble; Like a strong people set in battle array. (NKJV)

Another example is the popularity of the music of Susan Boyle. Her golden voice melted our hearts as she so wonderfully sang Amazing Grace and How Great Thou Art.  Interestingly, this CD sold over a million.  It hit the charts as the number one album and remained at the top of the charts for several weeks.  People want good music and good movies!

It has been disappointing to see the decline in the material being offered in movies, television, music, fashion and other art forms.   For example, the first four letter word used in an epic film was, Gone with the Wind.  The word was mild compared to what is being spoken in the films and television today.

Another example was the release of the movie Midnight Cowboy, in the 1970’s.  It was the first X-rated movie.  At that time X-rated meant that no one under 18 years of age was allowed to view the film.  By the standards of today, this film would be considered a G-rated movie. There was only one scene that had a hint of behavior that would not be acceptable to all viewers.  What made this movie X-rated is now accepted by today’s standard even for small children to watch on television.

In the music industry, the influence of MTV is promoting all kinds of immorality and violence and is yet another example of decline.

Acts 2: 1-2 Speaks about a sound coming from heaven that filled the whole house.  We want a sound from heaven to come to us in this hour that would impact the generations and the world.

May God’s people rise up as never before to take this important mountain of influence around the world.

PRAYER POINTS

  • Pray that God’s people will produce movies, art, literature and other forms of celebration, the Lord’s way, by being in His Presence and letting His creativity flow through them.
  • Pray that God’s people will let their voice be heard in the market place as they financially support Godly movies, music, art, sports, and entertainment
  • Pray that the God’s people will value and pursue the creative gifts that God has given them for His glory on earth.
  • Pray that the world will recognize outstanding films and other art forms.  One example is, “Movie Guide Awards,” a Christian based Hollywood awards gala, honoring actors, producers and films that bring honor to God and family.
  • Pray that God’s people will be the head and not the tail in leading the world in arts and entertainment.
  • Pray that we will be the army referred to in Joel 2: 2,7,8,11, destined to destroy the works of the enemy.
  • Pray for the sound of heaven that will come to earth and invigorate an entire generation.

Enlow says,  Before Jesus returns, He will showcase the glory of His inheritance in His saints.  He makes surpassing greatness of power available for those who will believe that He wants to do this.  Jesus manifesting in His children is the next great show on planet earth.  Christ in you is the hope of glory He wants the world to see what He looks like coming out of us.

His Kingdom is joy, peace and righteousness in the Holy Spirit…come on earth through arts and entertainment that will capture the bridegroom’s heart so He will return for that bride.

Eph 1: 18-19  His bride, male and female, will give glory to the bridegroom in his and her clothing hat

Broadway – pray that we will produce plays that honor families….like Sound of Music or Lion King

Let’s once again fill Broadway with productions that will honor God and family,

God’s people (Aglow) will rise up as it has never risen up before to take this important mountain.

EYE HAS NOT SEEN, NOR EAR HEARD, NOR HAVE ENTERED INTO THE HEART OF MAN

THE THINGS WHICH GOD HAS PREPARED FOR THOSE WHO LOVE HIM. I Cor 2:9

Categories: General Tags:

Sometimes Prayer is Knowing Where You Sit

April 4th, 2011 6 comments

Kneeling in prayerThere are many different postures for prayer – kneeling, standing, bowing, lying prostrate or even pacing.  I suppose we all have our favorite posture for prayer depending on the situation.  But there is something that is so much more important than our physical position in prayer – and that is knowing our spiritual position.

Ephesians 2:6 says, “And raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.”  This tells us very specifically where we are seated, where we are positioned spiritually.  We are seated in heavenly places in Christ Jesus!  This is so amazing and so empowering!

We are not groping around in the dust and mire of this earth hoping that maybe out there somewhere God just might hear our pitiful little cry for help.  No!  Our prayer is not a lone and puny voice straining to be heard in the cacophonic chaos of this world.  No!

In Christ, we have been raised above the distracting events and the harassing noise of the conditions of the world around us.  We are seated in heavenly places where we can see life’s circumstances from an eternal perspective.  We are seated in heavenly places where we can be heard by God, the One who is seated on the Throne, when we simply whisper His Name.  We are seated in heavenly places where in prayer we can enter a heavenly conversation with God – where we can hear His heart and know His ways as well as pour out our hearts to Him.

When I attended my first Aglow meeting many years ago, someone mistakenly seated me at the head table.  I leaned over and asked the president if I should find another seat.  She said, “Just sit up straight and act like you belong.”  According to God’s Word, we have been seated in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.  And that’s no mistake.  We really do belong there!

So, when we pray, whether we kneel or stand or bow or walk, we can pray with the confidence and authority of those who are seated in heavenly places.

Categories: Identity Tags: ,