Blessings to you as we walk together through this first month of 2012 seeking God and His very best for us in the coming year. Last week we looked at the low percentages of Christians who read their Bible. I pray
that you felt moved to put time in the Word as a priority in your life. In the season we are in in this country we must be washed in the Word. Do not ever forget that in the armor of God the Word of God is the only offensive
weapon. It is, “…the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God….” (Ephesians 6:17) Take a moment to consider how foolish one would be to enter a battle with no weapon for protection. I often hear Christians quote, “No weapon formed against you shall prosper….this is the heritage of the servants of the Lord….” (Isaiah 54:17) Jesus in Luke 10:19 says, “Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” No weapon against us prospering is our heritage as servants of the Lord. The authority Jesus gives us is our heritage. Our responsibility includes picking up our weapon, the sword of the Spirit, the Bible, daily. To enjoy the fruits of Kingdom living we must plant the seed of communion with the King via His Word.
Prayer is another responsibility we have to commune with the Lord. Jesus spent much time in prayer alone while He walked on this earth and now sits at the right hand of the Father interceding for us. He prayed on earth and He continues to pray in heaven. His example for us to follow clearly shows that prayer is critical to being a Kingdom believer. Jesus spent much time alone in prayer. In Matthew 14:23, we read, “And when He sent the multitudes away, He went up on a mountain by Himself to pray.” In Matthew 6:6, Jesus tells us, “But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut the door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. But when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.”
Let’s break this down: Jesus went by Himself to pray and He tells us to go into our prayer space to pray ‘in secret’ or alone. While there is certainly a time to pray with others in community as we know there is spiritual strength in numbers, we would be remiss if we did not set aside consecrated personal time to pray in communion with the Lord. Time alone in prayer releases us to intimately worship God and open the pathways to hear from Him concerning His perfect will for our life. Remember, Jesus tells us not to use ‘vain repetitions’ that simply echo empty words. God is not looking for lengthy dramatizations but rather for our heart issues and an openness to hear His heart issues for us. It is always a heart issue and our greatest reward is to align our heart with His heart in prayer. Purpose this week to establish or re-establish a commitment to prayer alone with Him.
This week please cover Pennsylvania, admitted to the Union on December 12, 1787, in prayer as we ‘pray the states’ toward the election. God is a God of order and we are ‘praying the states’ in the order they were admitted to our Nation. Pray for wisdom and discernment for political leaders, pastors and church leaders, people residing in Pennsylvania and for all in our Nation as we progress toward the 2012 election for President of the United States of America. These are our United States. Let us pray that we will arise united ‘for such a time as this’.
Thank you for your commitment to pray and seek God’s best. May He richly reward you and your family in 2012. I would like to share something I read on page 20 in the devotional, In God We Still Trust by Dr. Richard G. Lee: “Dr. James Kennedy, influential pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Florida, shared this observation: ‘In reading over the Constitutions of all fifty of our states, I discovered…there is in all fifty, without exception, an appeal or a prayer to the Almighty God of the universe…Through all fifty state Constitutions, without exception, there runs this same appeal and reference to God who is the Creator of our liberties and the preserver of our freedom.’ ” If there was any doubt
that our Nation was founded on Christian principles direct one to the Constitutions of all fifty states.