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Independence Day Message from Pastor Kevin

posted Jun 24, 2020, 1:59 PM by Bowmansville UMC


Independence Day is a federal holiday in the U.S. commemorating the declaration of Independence of the United States on July 4, 1776.  The continental congress declared that the thirteen American colonies were no longer subject (and subordinate) to the monarch of Great Britain, King George III, and were now united, free, and independent states.  The Congress had voted to declare independence two days earlier, on July 2, but it was not declared until July 4.

In 1777, thirteen gunshots were fired in salute, once in the morning and once again as evening fell, on July 4 in Bristol, Rhode Island.  An article in the July 18, 1777 issue of the Virginia Gazette noted a celebration in Philadelphia in a manner a modern American would find familiar:  An official dinner for the Continental Congress, toasts, 13-gun salutes, speeches, prayers, music, parades, troop reviews, and fireworks.  Ships in port were decked with red, white and blue bunting.  That was the beginning of how we celebrate independence every 4th of July. Today the most important part of our celebration should include prayers.


Message from Pastor Kevin

posted May 25, 2020, 9:16 AM by Bowmansville UMC

Father’s Day is a day of honoring fatherhood, paternal bonds, as well as, the influence of fathers in society.  In Catholic countries of Europe, it has been celebrated on March 19 since the Middle Ages.  This celebration was brought by the Spanish and Portuguese to Latin America, where March 19th is often still used for it.  Many countries in Europe and the Americas have adopted the U.S. date which is the third Sunday of June.  It is celebrated on various days in many parts of the world, most commonly in the months of March, April and June, according to the Home Nations customs.  As we celebrate Father’s Day in June, let us remember all fathers everywhere.  I would like to thank fathers, grandfathers, step-fathers and every male who has brought up any children and showed their love, like a father should.  Our greatest thanks should go to our Father in Heaven.  He shows us the right thing to do at all times.  His greatest love and sacrifice is His son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 

Let us show our love to fathers everywhere.


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A Note from Pastor Kevin

posted Apr 27, 2020, 6:18 PM by Bowmansville UMC

May is the month that we celebrate mothers everywhere. I would like to talk about the Mother Mary. We in the Methodist religion don’t celebrate the Mother Mary like the Catholic Church. Mary, the mother of Jesus, commonly referred to as Mary, Mother of God, Saint Mary and Blessed Virgin Mary, is one of the most admired figures in Scripture and considered by many to be the greatest of all Christian saints. She was a willing servant who trusted God and obeyed His call. While her life held great honor, her calling also required great suffering. Though there was joy in motherhood, there was great pain in the privilege of being the mother of the Messiah. Despite these things, she responded to God with great obedience and submission to His plan. Her life never robbed Jesus of His glory, for his mission was to witness the glory of the Son of God. This month when we celebrate Mother’s Day, let’s remember Jesus’ Mother along with all of the mothers  since then who have shaped us from the time we were born.




When Jesus Arrives Late - Sermon from Pastor Kevin 3-29-2020

posted Mar 29, 2020, 6:51 PM by Bowmansville UMC

John 11:1-16, John 11:17-37



It is very easy to move too quickly past the beginning of this story about Jesus and Lazarus.  We rush past the beginning because the rest of the story appears, at first glance, to be far more fascinating.  Indeed, most of the time it is what Jesus did all the way at the end of the story that galvanizes our attention.  There, after all, is the main drama, since it was at the end of the store that Jesus performed his most astonishing miracle:  raising Lazarus, deceased four days, from the dead. Jesus had done a number of other miracles in the Gospel of John, of course.  He had turned water into wine, healed a paralyzed man and restored sight to a man blind from birth. But to raise someone from the dead?  This was breathtaking, unheard of, a remarkable sign of the inbreaking of the eternal, an anticipation of Jesus’ own resurrection. No wonder the end of the story attracts our gaze; it is where the fireworks are.



Sometimes, however, when we have finished our amazed gazing at the end of the Lazarus story, we still have enough energy to shift our sights to what Jesus did in the middle of the story - namely, he wept.  This piece of the narrative is fascinating, too. “Jesus wept” (John 11:35) is the shortest verse in the Bible, at least in the King James version, but it is not the easiest verse to understand. Why did Jesus weep?  Is he moved with grief over the death of his friend Lazarus? Is he in sorrow over the unbelief around him? Is he anticipating his own death, too? John does not say. But even though the reasons for his feelings remain somewhat mysterious, we are still drawn to this picture in the middle of the story of an emotionally affected Jesus, tears slowly falling down his cheeks.



Because Lazarus’ raising at the end of this story is so dramatic and Jesus weeping in the middle so enigmatic, it is, therefore, easy to overlook the beginning of this story.  What at the beginning could possibly rival the action in the middle and at the end? To do so, however, would be a loss, for there is something curious and important work there as well.



What is most intriguing about the beginning of this story is the fact that Jesus is intentionally tardy, that he plans his schedule so as to arrive on the scene belatedly.  Jesus receives word that Lazarus is ill in the village of Bethany, but John makes it clear that Jesus was in no hurry to respond. In fact, John draws attention to Jesus’ delay.  John says that even though Jesus loved Lazarus and his two sisters, Mary and Martha, nevertheless, Jesus waited two days after he heard the news to go to Bethany (John 11:5-6). By that time, of course, it is too late.  Lazarus is dead.



Both Martha and Mary pour salt into the wound by pointing out to Jesus that his tardiness has cost a life.  “Lord, if you had been here,” they both say, “my brother would not have died” (John 11:21, 32). Indeed, Jesus was not there, intended not to be there, and Lazarus did die.  John waves a flag over this fact so that we will not miss it.



Our temptation is to judge Jesus harshly here.  What kind of person would dally around while a friend lies dying?  What could possibly have kept Jesus where he was while Lazarus, whom he loved, sweated out his last few breaths on his deathbed?  What Jesus did seems to be a violation of basic human compassion not to mention a scorning of the elementary instincts of pastoral care.  Why in heaven’s name, we ask, was Jesus late?



And that, it turns out, is precisely the question the author of John wants us to ask.  Why in heaven’s name was Jesus late? John knows that if we keep asking that question, we will discover something profound about heaven’s name, about Jesus and about God’s ways in the world.  But what? What good can we find in Jesus’ tardiness?



Part of what we will find is that Jesus sometimes saves us by being absent rather than present, at least not present in the ways we demand or expect.  Later in the Gospel of John, Jesus tells his disciples that he will soon depart from them. “You will look for me,” he says, “....[but] where I am going, you cannot come” (John 13:33).  This announcement that Jesus plans to separate himself from the disciples causes fear, perhaps even panic, to set in. The disciples cannot imagine being apart from Jesus. They plead that they will be lost without him (John 14:5), beg to be allowed to follow him (John 13:37), but Jesus refuses.  He clearly intends to be their Lord by being absent from them.



What this means is that Jesus will be obedient to God’s will and not theirs.  Jesus will accomplish the saving work of God and not their small and local understanding of who he should be.  They want him to be the leader of their little band, but Jesus is the light of the whole world. They want him to teach them, heal them, protect them, save them; Jesus teaches, guides, heals, protects, and saves all humanity.  They want him to respond to their immediate concerns, but his mission is not captive to their sense of what is urgent. He is their Lord because he transcends their little world; he is their Lord because he is Lord of all.



On Sunday morning, July 17, 1966, arguable the most newsworthy worship service in the world that day was held in St. Peter’s Cathedral in Geneva.  A great congregation had gathered, including Christian leaders from all over the globe. Reporters from around the world were present to cover this event.  The service had been planned as a part of the World Council of Churches Conference on Church and Society, and there was an exceptional air of expectation that day since the sermon for the morning was to be delivered by the world famous civil rights leader Dr Martin Luther King, Jr. 



But Dr. King did not show up for the service.  The hymns were sung, the prayers were prayed, and the ecumenical affirmations were spoken, but the pulpit was empty that day.  Dr. King was absent. He had canceled his trip to Geneva because racial rioting had erupted in the city of Chicago, and his presence was needed there as a mediator.  He sent a video tape of an excellent sermon to Geneva, and it was played over television monitors at the appropriate time, but, as one of the worshippers pointed out, “Even more powerful than his sermon that day was the simple fact of the preacher’s absence.”



“Even more powerful...was the preacher’s absence.”  In other words, Dr. King chose to be absent in a place where he was expected to be present because of his larger sense of mission.  If he had been a politician looking for a photo opportunity, he would no doubt have shown up in the Geneva pulpit, smiling for the cameras, rather than risking his life and reputation amid the chaos of Chicago’s violent streets.  But, given the wider scope of Dr King’s ministry, what appeared on the surface to be the most important place for him to be, St. Peter’s Cathedral, was not, in fact, where his vocation took him.



In an even deeper sense, Jesus’ mission transcends our tiny definitions of urgency.  A man was dying. More than that, it was Jesus’ friend Lazarus who was dying. Lazarus’ body grew weak, hot with fever.  Mary and Martha were wringing their hands with worry. The whole village of Bethany was troubled. Naturally, from Bethany’s perspective this was the most urgent, important, life or death crisis in all of creation and Jesus should have dropped everything in the world to be there.  But Jesus will not drop the world; he will save it - all of it. Jesus is not controlled by illness and death, even his dear friend Lazarus’ illness and death; to the contrary, Jesus is the one in control. Jesus does not jump when illness and death say “jump,” he conquers illness and death for the entire human race.



Not only will Jesus not allow illness and death to set his agenda, neither will Jess allow death to be the ruler of time.  In the world as we know it, death is in charge of time. When the hospital's intercom crackles with the message “Code Blue”, a signal that a patient has suddenly gone into cardiac arrest, all normal time ceases.  Physicians and nurses abruptly interrupt their customary duties and rush with emergency equipment to the afflicted patient. Routines are halted; all other activities must wait. Death has sounded the alarm and pushed the stem on the stopwatch, and all must urgently obey death’s timetable.



But not Jesus.  He gets the “Code Blue” on Lazarus, receives the word that the old clockwatching slavedriver death has punched in “911” and his immediate presence is demanded.  But Jesus does not respond to death’s timetable. Jesus is Lord over death and Lord of all time. No longer will death set the times and seasons, but only God. So, Jesus takes his time, because it is, after all, his time.  He is the Lord of the sabbath, and he is the Lord over Monday, and Thursday, and all the ticking minutes and desperate seasons of life. He is Lord over all time. He was there in the beginning, before all time, and through him all creation, including time, came into being.



There is a couple in Arkansas who have given their six-year-old son strict instructions to come home from playing every afternoon no later than 5 p.m.  He is allowed to play with his friends, but his parents are quite serious about his curfew. If he is not home by 5 p.m., they begin to worry and call around the neighborhood to find out where he is.  The boy knows this, though, and is careful to arrive every day on time.



One April Monday, however, the day after Daylight Saving Time went into effect, the boy was late coming home.  When he finally arrived, a few minutes before 6 p.m., his mother scolded him for being late. “You know you are to be home by five,” she said, “and here it is nearly six.”



Puzzled, the little boy pointed out the window.  “But the light” he protested, “the light; it’s the light that tells me when to come home.”  Realizing what had happened, his mother smiled and gently explained the day before the time had been changed, that everyone had reset their clocks and, now, the daylight lasted longer.  The boy’s eyes narrowed. “Does God know about this?” he asked suspiciously.



In a childlike way, this little boy shared John’s theological vision.  Time finally belongs not to human beings, not to the corruption of illness and death, but to God.  We know what time it is not by death’s clock, but by Jesus’ light. Jesus arrived in Bethany on his schedule, not death’s.  When he got to the tomb of Lazarus, now dead four days, Jesus, the Lord of past, present, and future, reached into the future of his resurrection victory and reversed the past of Lazarus’ death, thereby displaying the glory of God in the present.



“God so loved the world,” John writes, “that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him” can change their clocks.  Instead of watching the clock, wondering when death will finally come calling to stop the hour hand from moving, those who believe recognize that Jesus came calling with life eternal.  When Jesus at last came calling on the little village of Bethany, it was the common verdict that he was woefully late. But when Lazarus danced away from the tomb of death, the light of eternal life in his eyes, the whole world could see that Jesus was right on time.



A Message from the Pulpit

posted Jan 30, 2020, 7:52 PM by Bowmansville UMC

As we begin a new year, let us reflect on this past year. Remember what we as a church means to the community. We are the extension of our Lord and Savior. Live according to His will not ours. We celebrate this month the legacy of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Remember the faith he demonstrated for all people. Rev. King followed Jesus’ teachings on faith and treating everyone with the love of God. Jesus knew that God had given man certain creative powers and had endowed him high and noble virtues; and that these virtues and powers could be made living realities in the life of man, if he properly responded to the Grace of God. 

Conclusion: If men are willing to submit their wills to God’s will and to cooperate with him in his divine purpose, we will be able to turn the world upside down, outside in, and right side up.

Pastor Kevin


Give Thanks

posted Jan 5, 2020, 7:16 PM by Bowmansville UMC

A word from our Pastor (Taken from an article in the Buffalo News: The God Squad / by Rabbi Marc Gellman) 

Give thanks for people, things that rarely get noticed.  Every year before Thanksgiving, I honor a personal tradition of making a list of people and things for which and for whom I am thankful this year. The one twist to my list is that I never put on the list the people (family, friends) and things (home, food, job, nation) that always appear on the normal Thanksgiving lists.

I encourage you, my dear readers, (yes you are on the list) to follow me at your Thanksgiving table. Ask your guests to list someone or something for which they want to give thanks. It must be something or someone that is unusual and that rarely gets the thanks they/it deserve. As an example, my favorite item on past lists… squirrels.

So, this year’s Thanksgiving little known list begins with: Angels on the subway. In the Bible angels are not winged things with halos and harps. They could be but most angels are just ordinary people on a mission given to them by God. They do not even know that they are angels. In fact, the Hebrew word for angel is malach and that word just means a messenger. When three angels come to visit Abraham, they are described as three men (Genesis 18:2). When the angel wrestled with Jacob it is described as “a man wrestled with him” (Genesis 32:25). They are people but they are also angels. 

So, this year a good news story popped up a few weeks ago about an angel who surfaced in Oakland Calif., in the Bay Area Rapid Transit System. Surveillance videos captured the stunning images of a transportation supervisor named John O’Connor pulling a man to safety who had just fallen onto the tracks just in front of an oncoming train. “I just looked at him and said, ‘He’s not going to make it.’ Let me see, because it’s hard to get out of there,” O’Connor told reporters Monday. “It is not like you could just jump up and get out of there. You know, I was just fortunate God put me there and he got to see another day.” At least John O’Connor knew that he was an angel.

Is there someone who saved you? They did not have to pull you from the subway tracks but perhaps they saved you in other ways. Perhaps the angels in your life are the people who appeared in your life at just exactly the right moment and at just exactly the right time with just exactly the right message? Say their name before you cut the turkey. Call them after the holiday. The angels in your life deserve a little thanks and love. (To read the rest of this article, find it on the bulletin board in the back of the sanctuary!)

Pastor Kevin


Our Heavenly Father’s Unconditional Love

posted Jul 3, 2019, 9:08 AM by Bowmansville UMC

Read: Romans 5:6-11

Scripture tells us that love is the very essence of who God is (1 John 4:7).

So if you don’t believe that He loves you unconditionally, you’ll never really know Him or have genuine peace about your relationship with Him. How do you define “love“?

It is Jesus unselfishly reaching out to mankind, giving Himself to us and bringing good into our life regardless of whether or not we accept Him.

Romans 5:8 tells us that His care and concern are so immeasurable that He laid down His life for us while we were still His enemies.

In fact, the Bible says that He first began to express His love toward us before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:3-5).

That means your actions had absolutely nothing to do with His love for you!

God’s commitment to us has absolutely no conditions or restrictions and isn’t based on whether we love Him back.

Nor does He have more love for “good” people who may strike us as more worthy.

He loves us even in our sin, even when we don’t repent.

Does that give us license to disobey? No.

It gives us power to live holy lives, walk obediently with Him, and learn to love Him the way He deserves.

To follow Him is to receive the love He has been offering all along.

Every single moment, whether awake or asleep, we all live under the canopy of the Lord’s wondrous, absolute love for us.

But to fully experience that love, you must consciously receive it.

Say yes to this amazing gift that God wants to pour out on you.

Bask in it, and let it overflow to those around you.

Pastor Jim


Pentecost

posted May 30, 2019, 8:24 AM by Bowmansville UMC



For the early church, Pentecost was the second most important part of the Christian year after Pascha or Easter. Originally, it commemorated both the Ascension of Jesus and the descending of the Holy Spirit, but became two distinct celebrations by the end of the fourth century.

As Christianity became legal, there was no reason not to have as many celebrations as possible.)

Pentecost also became a favorite time for baptisms with its focus on the work of the Holy Spirit within the church and within our lives. The holy day continues to be a wonderful celebrative time for rites of passage including baptism, confirmation and the reception of new members.

           Pentecost Sunday represents an ending as well as a beginning: the end of the “Great Fifty Days” of the Easter Season (Pentecost means “the 50th day” in Greek) and the beginning of the commemorations of the early church. Pentecost also gives us an opportunity to ask ourselves the question, “What is our community ‘on fire’ about?”

Whatever you do to focus worshipers on the movement of the Spirit in our midst, remember the question: What is stirring within us? What is our/YOUR passion for ministry?

           What sets us ablaze (or at least warms our hearts)? Remember how Wesley said his heart was strangely warmed? How he had his conversion moment……have you folks ever had a conversion moment…..I have! I have talked about it.

This can give a theological and missional under-girding for worship celebrations, providing a “why” for the “what” of worship planning.

           May the Holy Spirit work in surprising ways in your church this year!                                 

  Pastor Jim

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 

A few nights ago, I had to comfort our dog Duncan, during a thunderstorm. He’s not usually affected by most weather, but the thunder noise had him scared. He shook like a leaf in the wind. So I held him and talked to him. I took a blanket to cover him to sleep under and sat with him until he felt brave enough to settle under the blanket, and that didn’t happen till the storm had passed. Once he was calmer and safely tucked under his blanket, “we” both went to bed.

But before I fell asleep, I thought about his need for comfort and how we’re not much different in this respect. Aren’t there times we all need to feel safe and to be reminded that we’re going to be okay? Maybe it’s not a thunderstorm, but a situation that makes life feel out of control.

The diagnosis: A relationship that’s falling apart.        Sadness and grief.      Financial struggles.

Or so many other possibilities, like our governing body of the United Methodist church sometimes God will change what’s going on around us, but often He will provide comfort for what’s going on inside of us instead.

 “He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.” 2 Corinthians 1:4 NLT

          Because He comforts us first, we are able to comfort others. We may not be able to change someone’s circumstances, but we can be there just to sit and let our friends know they not alone.

I couldn’t stop the thunderstorm, but I could comfort Duncan while he was afraid and shook like a leaf. I couldn’t stop my mom’s acute kidney failure a few years, but I could sit with her in Hospice so she didn’t feel alone. So many things we can’t control, but we can be there. Even when we can’t understand the situation or the pain, just being present can often be enough. It validates another person’s emotions. It says, “You don’t have to walk through this alone.” And perhaps, as God works through us, it even shines some light into the dark places in our lives. Friendships in the Love of Christ.                                          

 Pastor Jim


The Gift of Grace

posted Apr 18, 2019, 2:28 PM by Bowmansville UMC

The Bible is clear that we cannot save ourselves by doing good works.

Our works are nothing more than filthy rags to God (Isaiah 64:6), so “all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, “Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them” (Gal 3:10).

Over and over again, we are told that “no one is justified before God by the law, for “The righteous shall live by faith” (Gal 3:11).

It is only “by grace you have been saved through faith.

And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast” (Eph 2:8-9).

Several of the other world religions base their rewards on the works they do. Of course, if there are no works in a believer’s life, then someone who claims to be a believer has a dead or useless faith (James 2:14-26).

Are there any of us who JUST come to church on Sunday?

We are not saved by works, but saved for works…works that God has planned for us to do from before we were born (Eph 2:10).

We are not saved by those works, but those who are saved, will work.

Genuine saving grace will bear fruitful works for God’s glory, but the grace of God is what we receive that we did not deserve.

Common Grace

Common grace is the world, sinners and saints, all sharing in the blessings this life on earth. Some of the blessings of common grace include family, food, sunshine, rain, pleasure, laughter, and so many other things that we all enjoy in this life.

Even if the sinner is unaware of God’s provisions, they are still recipients of God’s common grace.

In the Methodist/Wesleyan way of thinking this is called Prevenient Grace (the first Grace)

It is grace that is common to all, as it is poured out on all. Jesus told the crowds that God “makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matt 5:45), so God blesses those who don’t even acknowledge Him with all of the general blessings that are found in the world, but even though “favor is shown to the wicked, he does not learn righteousness” (Isaiah 26:10).

It doesn’t matter…God still “gives food to all flesh” (Psalm 136:25a).

Uncommon grace is the idea that God blesses the world in general, and does not withhold blessings based upon a person’s character. 

Both a man who hates people and treats them in a harsh manner, and a man who loves people and is generous and kind, will receive the same amount of rain for their gardens. God’s uncommon grace is showered upon the rich and the poor, the sick and the well, and the good and the bad.

Only God’s saving grace is specifically given to those who have been brought to repentance and faith in Christ.

The greatest blessing of all is to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and be saved.

There is no greater blessing than the grace of God, but even this is a free gift of God.

Uncommon Grace

The grace of God is different from the common grace given to all.

To begin with, Jesus tells us to do things that are contrary to our own nature.

For example, Jesus says some of the most uncommon things known to man. Radical things like, “Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you” (Luke 6:27-28).

That is not something you’ll find much of in the world, and it’s certainly not in the ways of mankind to respond in this way, but we are not children of this world, but the children of God. The Apostle Paul writes that “while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly” (Rom 5:6). He didn’t wait till we’d be strong, because He’d have had a very long wait for that…like, forever. By God sending Jesus Christ, “God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom 5:8).

To go even further, even “while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son” (Rom 5:10). This is exceedingly rare, since “one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die” (Rom 5:7), but to die for ungodly, wicked enemies of God!? That’s an uncommon grace…an infinite love. That’s the grace of God.

Conclusion

Christ died for the ungodly, so that means He died for all of us.

At one time, we were all an enemies of God (some still are), but God sent His Son to die for all who would repent and trusted in Him.

Jesus has shown His love by living a sinless life and dying for us so that we might be “reconciled to God by the death of his Son” (Rom 5:10). If ever there was a time to be saved, it is today.

Tomorrow may not come for some…and that means judgment will have come before they had the chance to repent and believe (Heb 9:27).

There is still time today…today is the best of days to be saved (2 Cor 6:2).

None of us can say with 100% certainty, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit” (James 4:13), so it’s not wise for us to “boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring” (Prov 27:1).

Today is the day of salvation……..Pastor Jim


April Prayer Time with God

posted Mar 31, 2019, 2:07 PM by Bowmansville UMC   [ updated Mar 31, 2019, 2:39 PM ]

Have you ever taken the time to evaluate your journey with God?  Are you growing in your love relationship with Him?  You may be thinking, “Can I really know if I am growing spiritually?”  Yes, there are ways you can evaluate your spiritual growth.  One way is to think through your prayer journey.  Are you earnestly praying more? Are you doing a committed prayer time each day?  Because prayer is talking with God, ask yourself if your communication with Him is getting better.

I encourage you to take the time to think through your prayer journey.  The following are some of the elements in my prayer journey that show me if I am growing spiritually:

Trust in His Promises

Do I trust God and His promises more than I did twelve months ago?

“Up to this time, you have not asked a single thing in my name; but now ask and keep on asking and you will receive, so that your joy may be full” (John 16:25).

Ask Specifically

Am I asking for specific things, or do I pray generally? You will recognize when your prayers are answered if you ask specifically.

“For God is at work within you, helping you want to obey him.

And then helping you do what He wants” (Philippians 2:13).

Intercession (This is a BIG one.)

Am I praying for others on a regular basis?

“I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone” (1Timothy 2:1).

Cultivate a Quiet Heart

Do I have a quiet heart? Panic and peace cannot occupy the same place.

“When He gives quietness, who then can make trouble?” (Job 34:29).

Resting, Trusting, Leaning

Do I trust and rest in God, or do I let circumstances determined my feelings?

“But I have stilled and quieted my soul...” (Psalm 131:2).

Thankfulness, Praise and Worship

“A single grateful thought toward heaven is the most complete prayer.” – Gotthold Lessing

I rejoiced with those who said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD.” Psalm 122:1

Spiritual Warfare

Do you dress yourself with the armor of God each day?

“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against rulers, against authorities, against the powers of the dark world and against the forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 5:12).

Pray Without Ceasing...Talk to God about everything.

“Pray continually” (1 Thessalonians 5:17).

“The real reason for prayer is intimacy with our Father.” – Oswald Chambers

Father, we know You want to have a close, growing relationship with us. Lord, we also want to know You more. Deep within our souls we want to know You. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler (Used by Permission) with additions by Pastor Jim


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