Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The Seaman's Prayer

ETERNAL Lord God, 

who alone spreadest out the heavens, and rulest the raging of the sea; who hast compassed the waters with bounds until day and night come to an end; Be pleased to receive into thy Almighty and most gracious protection, the persons of us thy servants, and the Fleet in which we serve. Preserve us from the dangers of the sea, and from the violence of the enemy; that we may be a safeguard unto the United States of America and a security for such as pass on the seas upon their lawful occasions; that the inhabitants of our land may in peace and quietness serve thee our God; and that we may return in safety to enjoy the blessings of the land, with the fruits of our labour; and, with a thankful remembrance of thy mercies, to praise and glorify thy holy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 


Friday, August 18, 2017

Love First!

I seem to be glued to the news more than I can ever remember in the past. Every time I tune in I see crime and hate. The few good stories I do see are often the result of something bad happening first. There was a march in the streets of a nearby town and they called it a march for love which is a good thing, unfortunately, the march is in response to acts of hatred that resulted in deaths. Why has love become reactive and not proactive? Our first action in all cases should be Love. Love should not be a tool to fix a problem it should be the foundation that prevents problems from occurring.  When asked the question, which is the greatest commandment Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments” (Matthew 22:36-40 NIV).  Jesus expands on the importance of Love in John 13:34-35 (NIV) when he says “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples if you love one another.”

John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist Church, said, “Though we cannot think alike, may we not love alike? May we not be of one heart, though we are not of one opinion? Without all doubt, we may. Herein all the children of God may unite, notwithstanding these smaller differences.” 
When will we all come together and share the Love our God has shared with us with the rest of the world.
Love First!!

Friday, August 4, 2017

Powerful Prayer

Today I was thinking about Prayer and how it leads to the blessing of the Lord.  The second half of James 5:16 (NIV) says “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” The question that came to me is “How do we make sure that our prayers are powerful and effective?”. So how do you know that God is answering our prayers even if the answers are not what we want to hear? The answer is the blessing equation. We can all have powerful and effective prayers, the formula for this is written out in the Bible Jesus in Matthew 17:20 (NIV) said, “He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”.”

So, to have powerful prayers, we need faith the type of faith that does not have us praying for God to do something but the faith to pray a prayer of thanksgiving for what God is about to do.  Jesus tells us “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Matthew 7:7-8 NIV).  Our Powerful prayer should be to ask God for what we want and then thank him for the blessing we are going to receive.  Sometimes we get caught up in praying for God to have his will in a matter in our life, but we forget that God is our Father and as a father, he cares about what we want also. It’s not wrong to ask for what we want; it is a mistake to demand something from God or to try to make deals with God. We should never say “God if you answer my prayer I will do something in exchange.”