Remember the Time – The Book of Answered Prayers - Purity 634
Purity 634 01/21/2022 Purity 634 Podcast
Today’s photo of a blue cloud filled sky over the beach at Lake Taghkanic State Park in Ancram NY comes to us from yours truly as I captured this scene on August 30th in 2020. At that time I had only just recently gotten my new house “down by The River”, was still working two jobs, and the Covid-19 pandemic was still relatively new, so the number of people allowed into State Parks was limited. I didn’t have a lot of spare time in those days and this day was the only time in 2020 that I was able to go swimming recreationally. Even though I had to wear a mask when I wasn’t in the water, I remember having an overwhelming sense of victory that despite all of the struggles in my personal life and with the restrictions of 2020 I was able to overcome and enjoy my life. This simple swimming excursion told me that the Covid-19 pandemic and all the things I had come against hadn’t beaten me and I knew that it was only because of my faith in God that I was able to go through it all with joy and peace despite the negative circumstances.
Well, it’s Friday and as I tell the men in the discipleship course I facilitate on Thursday nights, I encourage you to start your days with the practice of gratitude. When we recall all the things we have overcome and all the things we have, we can thank God for a lot more than just the fact that it is Friday and we can start each day with the recognition that, because of God, our lives are actually quite wonderful.
Last night, I enjoyed the benefits of being a part of a Christian men’s group who are actively seeking the Lord and their freedom in Christ, as I asked each man to recall a time in their lives when they chose to trust their faith rather than their feelings. Their testimonies were all examples of how the Lord will call you to do things that you are uncertain of but when you trust Him and obey what He says the results are always good, but what I was inspired by is how those positive results gave these men a means to grow in their faith and to trust the Lord to follow Him in larger and larger measures.
One of the men reported that he kept a journal that documented all the times that God was faithful in his life. He called it his “book of answered prayers”. He stated that through the years he had documented 68 instances where God had answered his prayers in mighty ways. He kept this book to testify of the Lord’s goodness and as a reminder to himself to continue to trust the Lord.
Of all those 68 answered prayers, he shared the story of how the Lord answered his daughters’ prayers when they were young, and their story is amazing in not only the results but in their faithful perseverance in prayer.
When his daughters were quite young, I think it was 6 and 4 years old (forgive me), they made a friend who wasn’t a Christian who they dearly loved. So as Christians with child like faith, they began praying that their friend would make Jesus their Lord and Savior. They didn’t get immediate results but because they loved their friend, they kept on praying. My friend was amazed by their faith but encouraged them to keep at it. So praying for their friend became a normal part of their evening routine and they continued in it for years.
Our friend shared that about five years later, him and his family were invited by their daughter’s friend’s family to come and watch as not only this daughter who was prayed for five years to proclaim their faith in Jesus Christ and to be baptized, but for that girl’s entire family to proclaim their faith in Christ and to be baptized!
And as awesome that is, our friend said that this move of God further inspired his and his family’s faith and now it can inspire you like it does me.
Yesterday, I was running errands in the county I grew up in and as I drove, I had phantom memories of mistakes I have made and some people I had hurt. That condemnation came quick, but I quickly reminded myself that those mistakes were made by a desperate and confused teenager and that I was no longer that person.
As I was driving and listening to Christian music, the Spirit of the Lord came upon me, and I was overwhelmed with a flood of emotion that drove me to tears of joy as I was reminded of the goodness of God. I continued to praise and worship as the tears flowed and the Lord reminded me of all He had led me through. And this Holy Spirit driven emotional praise and worship session, also reminded me of the Lord’s continual presence in our lives.
These stories of the faithfulness of God, our remembrances, our experiences serve two purposes. They are to be used by us to motivate ourselves to continue to trust the Lord in our daily walk and they are to be shared with others to encourage them, to let them know that God is real, alive, and well, and deeply loves them.
So keep walking and talking with God and remember the times that He delivered you and remember the stories of others that were helped by Him too and thank the Lord for all He has done and will do and Thank God it’s Friday.
Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.
This morning’s meditation verses are:
Psalm 112:5-8 (NLT2)
5 Good comes to those who lend money generously and conduct their business fairly.
6 Such people will not be overcome by evil. Those who are righteous will be long remembered.
7 They do not fear bad news; they confidently trust the LORD to care for them.
8 They are confident and fearless and can face their foes triumphantly.
Today’s verses teach us to live generously and righteously as a product of our trust in the Lord.
Ironically, last night one of the other men in our group testified about hard times where they were moved to give money to help family when they desperately needed the money for their rent. They were moved by the Lord to give the money anyway and soon after they did another person replaced those funds with a gift, not knowing of the sacrifice that they had just made.
The same man also spoke of God’s providence at another time when his family needed to leave their home because of a financial crisis and find a new place to live. The man received a dream in which he was assured that he would find a good place and that his family would be there for many years.
Shortly after the dream, he found an available unit in a condominium that he had looked at previously with no luck. It was a nice place, but he feared that if they checked his credit report he would be summarily rejected. Instead of suspicion, he was met with hospitality and acceptance, as his family was welcomed into their new home with no credit check. They have lived there for 20 years, fulfilling God’s promise that he would find a good place and they would be there for years to come.
These testimonies prove today’s verse to be true. We are to lend money generously, conduct our business fairly, and live righteously by following the Lord and trusting to live according to His ways. If we do that we will not be overcome by evil, and we need not live in fear of bad news because we can confidently trust that the Lord will care for us.
So be confident and fearless and face your foes triumphantly, because when we make Christ our Lord and Savior and live a Christian disciple’s life, we will know that the Lord is with us and that He will make a way when there seems to be no way. In Christ, we can know the Lord’s care and know that when that the going gets tough He will come for us in our time of need.
As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.
Today we continue to share from Dr. Neil Anderson’s . “Restored: Experience Life with Jesus”. Today, we continue sharing from Chapter 5.
As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage all to purchase Dr. Neil Anderson’s books for your own private study and to support his work.
TRUST GOD’S PROTECTION
Daniel also taught us to trust in God’s protection and provision when we cannot in good conscience do what the king commands. King Darius was persuaded to “establish a statute and enforce an injunction that anyone who makes a petition to any god or man besides you, O king, for thirty days, shall be cast into the lions’ den.”105 Daniel could not honor that decree, and so he continued to pray and give thanks to almighty God. He ended up in the lions’ den, and the Lord shut the mouths of the lions.
If your boss wants you to lie, don’t be disrespectful. Appeal to him or her as outlined above and offer an alternative. What if the boss won’t accept your alternative and says, “If you won’t do what I tell you to do, then I will get someone in here who will?” Then let him or her get someone who will, and trust God to provide for your needs.
DEAL WITH ABUSE
What if the authority figure is abusive? Is it being rebellious to turn him in? Absolutely not! It is wrong for Christian leaders to tell battered wives and abused children to go home and be submissive. “But that is what Scripture requires,” says the abuser. That is not all Scripture says on the issue. God has established governing institutions to protect battered wives and abused children.
The heart of God goes out to the weak and the defenseless. “This is pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father, to visit orphans and widows in their distress.”106
Turn the abusers in to the authorities whom God has established. This action is not being vindictive for two reasons. First, abusive leaders have obviously abdicated their responsibility to provide for and protect those whom they were charged by God to watch over. Being abused by the one in authority over you doubles the offense. Not only are you being abused, but you have also lost your God-intended protection.
Second, you will never help abusers by allowing them to continue in their abuses. They are hurting people who need help. If they aren’t stopped, the cycle of abuse will just continue on. Stopping them actually demonstrates care for the abusers. They have a right to find their forgiveness and freedom in Christ like anybody else, but many won’t take that opportunity if they are allowed to continue in sin. If you were abused by your father, and your mother knew about it, but wouldn’t do anything to help you, who would be harder to forgive? Everybody knows it would be the mother.
I am not saying that we don’t have to be submissive to people in positions of authority simply because they are not perfect. If that were the case, nobody would be submissive to anyone but God. What I am saying is that there is a biblical means by which we can appeal to those less-than-perfect people who are in authority, and there are times when we must obey God rather than man. Determining when to reject man’s authority requires discernment and a deep inner conviction based on truth that cannot be compromised regardless of the consequences. You are acting rebelliously if you refuse to submit simply because you would prefer to do it your way.
Join our “Victory over the Darkness” or “The Bondage Breaker” series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!
at https://mt4christ247.podbean.com, You can also find it on Apple podcasts
(https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-mt4christ247s-podcast/id1551615154). The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and Audible.com.
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.
My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock (https://www.facebook.com/groups/529047851449098 ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (https://feed.podbean.com/tammalyn78/feed.xml)
Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship