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Monday, October 14, 2013

HOOK LINE

October 4, 2013 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions
By Elaine James -
Tom’s flight landed on time, and before he knew it, he was driving off in his snazzy red sports car rental. He was on his way to a convention where he was slated to speak. Once he arrived in town, he was pumped up but troubled. I’m on time. Everything is going to be okay, except that I still need that “hook line” to open my speech – something funny. I also need a little pick me up. Coffee!
As he made his way into the drive-through lane, he remembered that he still needed to confirm the pronunciation and spelling of the town. He certainly didn’t want to embarrass himself by saying it wrong during his presentation.
He greeted the young boy at the window inquiring, “How do you spell this place, and can you pronounce it for me?”
With a slight hesitation, the boy spelled, “B-U-R-G-E-R-K-I-N-G, Burger King.”
Tom, by this time laughing hysterically, said, “No, son, I mean the name of this town!”
Earlier that morning Tom had prayed, “God, I need a funny hook line for my speech. Help!” Nothing came to his mind. He was on the plane thinking, I must come up with something funny. Still nothing! He prayed again, this time telling God, “I only have about two hours till I give that speech. Can you hurry it up a bit?”
In the past, I’ve found myself praying like Tom, telling God what to do and how much time He had to do it. I have prayed like this, “Lord, I am going right now to meet with someone. Make her think the same way as I do about this situation so there won’t be any conflict.” Then I would reason with God using Scripture, “You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it” (John 14:14 NIV).
Tom got his “hook line” with that funny story. Prayer does not always work fast even when I reason with God. James helped me out when he stated, “Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that” (James 4:15 NIV).
I have learned to pray about everything, but now I end my prayer with, “… if it is your will, Father …” I’m hooked! Remember, Father knows best!
PRAYER: Father I pray for _______. Your will be done. I know You know best. Thank You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

PRIZEFIGHTER

Prizefighter

October 2, 2013 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions
By Elaine James -
My first week of empty nesting. The last two of my four children were going off to college. I kept imagining myself being alone. The adversary kept jabbing me with “You are never going to make it! You are going to fall apart! Those kids are your life. You cannot do anything else!”
I desperately prayed, “God I just can’t fall apart. This is where life is now. Help me!”
It was impressed on my heart to read the book of Philippians. My study Bible recommended that the reader focus on certain verses of that book. There are many good verses that I like, but I was praying and asking God for a personal revelation for me. I actually get excited about praying and reading, because at some point a verse does pop out at me! Then I just read it over and over till I can journal some thoughts to help me carry through the day.
“And do not [for a moment] be frightened or intimidated in anything by your opponents and adversaries, for such [constancy and fearlessness] will be a clear sign (proof and seal) to them of [their impending] destruction, but [a sure token and evidence] of your deliverance and salvation, and that from God” (Philippians 1:28 AMP).
This was the verse! Consider the phases of life as a boxing match. We’re God’s prizefighters! Are we going to throw in the towel and give into fear, intimidation or sadness? Are we wimps or fighters? We have to be careful or we can get hit hard and be KO’d (knocked out), ending up depressed or sick.
This verse put it into perspective for me. It is a daily choice. I am a competitive person by nature. I cannot let Satan win. I cannot let him destroy me. If I draw near to God, He can disable Satan and make it so he won’t have control over my life. God can give me the energy to fight! How about you?
I think that we have no choice about being in the boxing ring of life. There will always be round after round with many bouts of fighting. I know that if we take breaks between those rounds and go to God’s corner where he coaches and delivers us, we can be prizefighters!
Prayer: Dear Lord, help me embrace Your promise to deliver me. I want to draw near to You and be energized by You so I can be a prizefighter. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.