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PRAYER

God is omnipresent and omnipotent.  If that's true, then why do need to pray?  Is prayer really powerful?  Why does God answer some prayers and not others?  Os there a "right way" to pray?

 

This week we dive in to the gift of  PRAYER. 

 

MONDAY

Today we talk about the positions of Prayer.  Some say it doesn't matter as long as you pray.  Some say there are reasons we are to take certain positions.

 

Today we list the prayer positions in the Bible.

 

  • Standing (Genesis 24:12-14)

  • Lifting the hands (1 Timothy 2:8)

  • Sitting (Judges 20:26)

  • Kneeling (Mark 1:40)

  • Looking upward (John 17:1)

  • Bowing down (Exodus 34:8)

  • Head between the knees (1 Kings 18:42)

 

I will say this, let us not be lazy in our prayer practices.  Let us have reverence when we pray.  Let us be honest and vulnerable in our prayer.

 

God hears all prayers.  ALL. 

 

Be Blessed, Beloved.

 

-           Rev. Damon

www.faithfirst.me

© 2020 Faith First Project

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TUESDAY

 

"Moreover as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you; and I will instruct you in the good and the right way.” – 1 Samuel 12:23 NSRV

 

The wise judge Samuel is on his way out. He has been led by God in his rulings, administration, and application of the law.  As he was leaving, he had a mic-drop moment that we need to heed today. 

 

“far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you…”

 

It is a sin against the Lord if we stop praying for another.  Sit with that. 

 

When is the last time you prayed for another? Like that real, kneel one knee old-school Baptist kind of prayer for someone else?  What about an enemy? 

 

Sisters and Brothers, our prayers are gifts of conversation with God. You know the saying; it is better to give than to receive?  Let us give the gift of our conversation to God for to bless another. 

 

Let us use our conversations with God to not talk about someone but bless someone.  Let us have a little talk with Jesus to make someone else’s life, right.  Let us seek the Holy Spirit to right the relationship we have with another, to send Angels to them, to anoint their lives with healing and forgiveness and grace. 

 

Let us pray for another because life preys on them as well.

 

Pray for one another!

 

Be Blessed, Beloved.

 

-           Rev. Damon

www.faithfirst.me

© 2020 Faith First Project

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WEDNESDAY

 

"You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, in order to spend what you get on your pleasures." - James 4:3 NRSV

 

Deep Breath.  Shake it off.   This one is gonna be hard.  Ready....?

 

God never answers our prayers with a "no".    Never.

 

God answers every prayer according to HIS WILL. 

 

What is hard for me (us, perhaps) is accepting and living with the notion that what I (we) pray for, at times, is not God's Will, and that God knows what is best.

 

Sisters and Brothers, with all my compassion, empathy, theological education, I cannot guarantee you comfort and an answer that soothes your soul when those moments arise and prayers are not answered the way we want.

 

What I can offer you, no, what God gave us is Jesus.

 

We hurt.  Sometimes we cause the issues in our lives.  Sometimes others cause the hurt.  Sometimes life just happens. 

 

And don't forget, that devil is hunting us down, manipulating things to happen to either make us doubt and turn away from God or give us everything we want, to make us full of ourselves, and turn away from God.

 

We so often we pray and ask God when things aren't going our way, we need something.  Then we question and get mad when we don't get what we want.

 

God knows what we want before we ask.  More importantly, God knows what we NEED before we do... and provides.

 

When we have faith and trust in Him, then we should rest knowing that God hears our prayers, sees our needs and He is faithful to answer according to His will, which is always the best.

 

So I offer today's scripture to not criticize anyone, but to remind us all, let us ask RIGHTEOUSNESSLY, let us trust God, and know that Jesus is the comforter and counselor we need when we don't understand when it hurts.

 

Keep Praying Beloved!

 

Be Blessed, Beloved.

 

-           Rev. Damon

www.faithfirst.me

© 2020 Faith First Project

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THURSDAY

 

"Cast your burden on the Lord , and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved." - Psalms 55:22 NRSV

 

"Give God your prayers and you will be alright".  On the surface, that is what this scripture says.  Many take it at "surface" value and keep it moving.

 

Not so fast my friends. The words "cast" and "moved" kept speaking to me.

 

"Cast" is a reference to a fishing technique used then... and now.  Then, men sewed a net of size and stood on the shore, threw the net into a body of water to catch fish.

 

This was a very physically demanding way to catch fish.  This was also the way that the poorer men caught fish because they were not privileged to own a boat.  So they stood on the shore to catch sustaining sustenance for their familes and to sell for income.

 

"Moved".  This is how we know this was a shoreline fisherman.   Even when anchored, boats move.  So why would a shoreline fisherman move?

 

 Because of economics, shoreline fishermen were more anxious,  in desperate need to receive from the waters of life.  So they kept moving to make sure they found a spot where they could catch the most fish.

 

For today Sisters and Brothers, do not let your status determine the value of your prayer to God.  God does not care how you got to where you are, God wants all of our burdens from all of us, regardless of how the world labels us.

 

And after we throw our burdens, after we are so tired and drained, as we are emotionally spent with worry, let it go, be still and know.

 

God does not want the concerns of this world and our circumstances to move us.   God wants us steady in the waters (baptism) and awaits His sustaining blessings for us.

 

It's coming.  Keep casting.  It's coming.  Keep praying.  Its coming.

 

It's COMING!!!

Be Blessed, Beloved.

 

-           Rev. Damon

www.faithfirst.me

© 2020 Faith First Project

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FRIDAY

 

"Are any among you suffering? They should pray. Are any cheerful? They should sing songs of praise." - James 5:13 NRSV

 

How much of the world economy is built off of insecurity?  Think about that.  How many products/services have been created to attempt to make us feel "less"?  And then, how many products/services have been created to attempt to make us feel "better" or "more"?

 

An endless cycle all making money off the idea that "different" is "wrong".

 

And since Abel and Cain, we have internalized insecurities and developed hatreds, -isms, -phobias, and sometimes intentionally attempt to destroy others because of how we feel about ourselves... not you specifically, humans in general.

 

What if we took these words from James and did what they said?  Pray when suffering and Pray when cheerful?

 

And what if we paid attention to the first word...."Any"?

 

Who can pray about their pain?  Who can pray when life hurts?  Who can pray when someone wrongs us? Who can pray when we wrong someone?  Anyone.

 

Who can pray in thanksgiving?  Who can pray in the joys of life?  Who can pray when miracles have been performed?  Who can pray for the blessings given to another?  Who can pray when blessings are delivered to us?  Anyone.

 

"Any".  God doesn't recognize our insecurities.  God doesn't end the definition of our lives at our wrongs.  God wants to have a little conversation with us to make us and keep us right.

 

We don't have to be "qualified" to talk to God. 

 

Sisters and Brothers, remember James... the world can try to convince you that you are "less", but James says "ANY" can come to the throne, in bad and good. 

 

Be Blessed, Beloved.

 

-           Rev. Damon

www.faithfirst.me

© 2020 Faith First Project

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SATURDAY

 

"but I have prayed for you that your own faith may not fail; and you, when once you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” - Luke 22:32 NRSV

 

This may seem unfair, at first...  This scripture is about intercessory prayer.  What is unfair, is to compare us to the one who is praying. 

 

"but I prayed for you", said Jesus.  When Jesus prays for you.... (sermon!)

 

There is a lot here, so let's unpack it.

1.  Jesus prays for us.  Can you pause right there for a minute?  Knowing what He was going to go through then and all He went through for us... and Jesus still prays for US?!?!?!  Thank You Jesus!!!

 

2. When we turn away from God, Jesus reminds us that through our Faith and prayer for forgiveness, God will allow us to turn back to Him.

 

3. Use our failings and then our faith and prayers to strengthen, encourage, support our Sisters and Brothers.  Jesus says that we can give strength to another through our prayers.

 

Topline, THERE IS POWER IN PRAYER!

 

Keep praying Sisters and Brothers.  Keep Praying.

 

Be Blessed, Beloved.

 

Be Blessed, Beloved.

 

-           Rev. Damon

www.faithfirst.me

© 2020 Faith First Project