Sarah will be sending some out later. PTL! Maura (our granddaughter) is home and heading to day care today. Please continue to pray for full healing, health for Eric and Racheal and rest and refreshing. Thank you!
As soon as this sends, we are on vacation. PTL that the family doesn't need Karen to babysit today and that we can celebrate our 19th anniversary today and get ready for our flight to Florida early tomorrow. Pray for nice weather. It's suppose to rain all week down there and for refreshing and fun for us. Thanks!
Last evening I received a call from a distressed friend. She and her husband are going through a lot and both are depressed yet seeking God. I was able to refer her to Sarah (counseling should be with same sexes). Thank God for Sarah and her wisdom of resources and shepherding heart. Pray for her as she covers for me this week. Pray for this couple to find shalom, provision, wisdom, and joy.
Pray for Mike Laise. He is preaching for me on Sunday. God spoke to his heart yesterday and gave him a good word for Sunday. PTL!
Pray for all of us to continue to grow in faith and to be able to choose joy more quickly. I am including the Harvest Prayer from yesterday again below. It is a powerful prayer to pray over you and for others. Maybe share it with a friend in need. The couple above came to mind when I prayed it again this morning.
Good Morning Joy Choosing, Growing in Faith, Praying, Friends! This is the day the Lord has made! Rejoice and be glad in it! Joy and choosing joy continues to be the theme as we move toward God's shalom.
Below are our devos today that continue the themes of joy, faith, peace and the importance of small groups and huddling with friends. What's God saying to you and what will you do about it? Choose joy! Grow in trust! Follow God with some friends. Complete your journey here well! God loves you and created you for such a time as this. Rejoice! And receive His shalom. Amen!
Have a great week! Promise, no more blogs until next Mon. However, God will speak to you as you engage with Him on your own or with some friends. Rejoice! Shalom!
Harvest Prayer Blog: from yesterday.
December 10 - Peace, Be Still (Second Sunday of Advent)
Before you begin, ask God to reveal to your heart the ways that the enemy has robbed you of the peace that is yours because of Christ. Confess these things to Him and ask Him to pour out on you His peace that passes all understanding. Ask Him to still the storms in your life and refocus your living.
I thank You Father, that Jesus Himself is my peace and that He has completely destroyed the barrier that separated me from You! How grateful I am that I have been reconciled to Him through His blood shed on the cross and now have peace with You.
Forgive me I pray, for the times that I do not cast my cares and anxieties onto You, but instead carry them myself and allow my heart to be weighed down and needlessly burdened. I ask that Your peace, which is beyond my ability to understand, guard my heart and my mind--cover me, because I am in Christ Jesus. I belong to You. Thank You Lord Jesus, for the peace that You give to me which is so very different than the fleeting attempts of the world to quiet my heart. Guard my heart by Your Holy Spirit, that I might not be afraid. Help me to learn to be still and know that You are God, to hear Your voice in the midst of the storms that I face saying “Peace, be still.” Keep me from fear and increase my faith. May my life be characterized by Your peace no matter what situation I might face, that You may be glorified in me and through me and receive the praise that is due Your name.
May I love Your Word that I might have great peace and not stumble.
May my mind be controlled by Your Holy Spirit and produce life and peace.
May Your strength and peace fill my life because I belong to You.
Lord Jesus, You are my Wonderful Counselor, You are Mighty God, the Everlasting Father incarnate and Prince of Peace! With You all things are possible. I invite You into the impossible situations of my life and ask that as I wait on You, You fill me with Your peace – for my hope is in You alone and I trust in Your great name.
(Ephesians 2:14; Colossians 1:20; Romans 5:1; 1 Peter 5:7; Philippians 4:7; John 14:27; Psalm 46:10; Mark 4:35-41; Psalm 119:165; Romans 8:6; Psalm 29:11; Isaiah 53:6; Matthew 19:26)
--This Advent prayer was written by Tiece L. King, the author of Pray the Word. This resource is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount on the book.
- Praise God as the one whose arm is “not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear” (Isa. 59:1).
- Thank God for the promise to hear you when you come to him in prayer.
- Confess any sin which may result in his not hearing your prayers (59:2). If you are struggling in this area, commit yourself to regular, daily times of prayer and fellowship with God. Ask him to draw close to you as you fellowship with him.
- God has long arms when it comes to salvation. No one is beyond his reach. Thank him for that truth and pray for one unsaved person you know.
Ellen was on a tight budget, so she was glad to receive a Christmas bonus. That would have been enough, but when she deposited the money, she received another surprise. The teller said that as a Christmas present the bank had deposited her January mortgage payment into her checking account. Now she and Trey could pay other bills and bless someone else with a Christmas surprise!
God has a way of blessing us beyond what we expect. Naomi was bitter and broken by the death of her husband and sons (Ruth 1:20–21). Her desperate situation was rescued by Boaz, a relative who married her daughter-in-law Ruth and provided a home for her and Naomi (4:10).
That might have been all Naomi could hope for. But then God blessed Ruth and Boaz with a son. Now Naomi had a grandson to “renew [her] life and sustain [her] in [her] old age” (v. 15). That would have been enough. As the women of Bethlehem put it, “Naomi has a son!” (v. 17). Then little Obed grew—and became “the father of Jesse, the father of David” (v. 17). Naomi’s family belonged to Israel’s royal line, the most important dynasty in history! That would have been enough. David, however, became the ancestor of . . . Jesus.
If we believe in Christ, we’re in a similar position to Naomi. We had nothing until He redeemed us. Now we’re fully accepted by our Father, who blesses us to bless others. That’s so much more than enough.
By Mike Wittmer
REFLECT & PRAY
When has God blessed you beyond what you imagined? How has He shown you that He’s more than enough?
Jesus, You’re more than enough for me.
The story of Naomi, Ruth, and Boaz takes place during the period of the judges (Ruth 1:1). Though we don’t know which judge presided during the days of Ruth, the contrast between the events of the book of Judges and the story of Naomi and Ruth’s redemption is striking. During a time when “everyone did as they saw fit” (Judges 21:25) and “did evil in the eyes of the Lord” (a phrase used seven times in Judges; see 2:11; 3:7,12; 4:1; 6:1; 10:6; 13:1), Boaz looked out for the good of another—a foreigner. In a setting of selfishness lies a story of compassion and grace.
From birth I was cast on you; from my mother’s womb you have been my God. - Psalm 22:10 (NIV)
For as long as I can remember, my father was not present in my life. During my childhood, I struggled and felt sad when we had homework regarding Father’s Day or when I heard from friends about how their fathers were the center of their families.
When I was in middle school, a friend invited me to church. Many of my friends and their families also attended the church. Occasionally, I was filled with longing when I saw the fathers there with their families.
In high school, I met a girl who loved God. One day she and I discussed faith. She had also been brought up by her mother, and she too had experienced the difficulties of not knowing her father. She told me that since becoming a Christian, she had come to know God as her father.
Her testimony deeply resounded in my heart, and tears streamed down my cheeks from the inferiority I felt for being without a father. She then shared with me scriptures that comforted her. That day I understood the spiritual meaning of having a heavenly Father who created me. And I was greatly comforted.
Father God, thank you for the comfort of knowing we have life in you. Help us to comfort our brothers and sisters as you have comforted us. We pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.TWFYT