Christmas Memories

Thankfulness at Christmas time

Christmas traditions remind us to be thankful.

In the Old Testament, God commanded that certain festivals and celebrations be held annually as a reminder of what He had done for His people. These celebrations were a vehicle to bring together the entire family, community and nation to celebrate God’s great mercy and to remember to be thankful for all He had done for them.

While God does not instruct us in how to celebrate Christmas, we can use whatever traditions we’ve embraced to help us remember God’s great deliverances in our lives and to be thankful for all our blessings.

Each year when I open my box of Christmas ornaments to decorate the tree, I discover so many memories connected to each ornament. I have ornaments from my wedding shower (a December wedding), ornaments from many of the places I’ve visited in my travels, a few left over from my childhood days, special ornaments marking baby’s 1st, 2nd, 3rd Christmas, and even some homemade ornaments from my daughter that still grace the Christmas tree.  Continue reading

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Thanksgiving

It’s that time of year when we give thanks for all of our blessings—both as individuals and as a nation. Our thankfulness usually focuses on our material blessings—our daily provision of food, our jobs and homes, our family and friends and our freedom as a nation. While we should thank God for all of these blessings, how many of us ever give thanks for the trials and difficulties of the past year?

Why should we do this? Author and speaker, John Bevere says in his new book, Killing Kryptonite, that “Adversity locates the strength of our faith.” In other words, life’s difficulties are a kind spiritual thermometer that reveals whether we are trusting in our own ability to get through our trials or whether we are really putting our faith in God.  Continue reading

Online class–Lord, It’s Boring in My Prayer Closet

Join me for an online class on prayer!

I teach an online  course based on my book, Lord, It’s Boring in My Prayer Closet, for BeADisciple.com–a great online site affiliated with Southwestern College that offers a variety of Christian classes for pastors, lay leaders and all who want to go deeper with the Lord.

 

For more info see click here: BeADisciple

Is God Hiding His Face from America?

Photo of Hurricane Irma from space

Hurricane Irma from space

My heart has been heavy the last few weeks as I’ve prayed over all the disasters that have come upon the United States—floods from Harvey; wildfires across the mid and western states, Irma—one of the biggest and most destructive hurricanes to ever hit the Caribbean and Florida; a destructive earthquake in Mexico. And that doesn’t include the ongoing unstable political situations around the world.

Social media is full of requests to pray for the victims of all these disasters. And while we should pray, I’m saddened that the majority of Americans and many Christians do not have a clue as to what these disasters might be pointing to for the future of America as a nation.  Continue reading

Praying God-Inspired Prayers

Bible and cup of coffeeOften our prayer time can feel more like a burden than a joy. In fact, it can be downright boring! Perhaps it’s because we’re going to God with our grocery list of needs and wants instead of listening to what God wants us to pray.

Joyce Meyer, in her book Hearing from God Each Morning says:

I think one of the reasons we sometimes feel unfulfilled in prayer or sense that we are not finished praying about a matter is that we spend so much time just praying our prayers. But—there is a better, higher, more effective way to pray: praying God’s prayers. To be honest with you, if I am praying my prayer, I can pray about something for fifteen minutes and still feel unfinished; but if I am being led by the Holy Spirit and praying God’s prayer, I can pray two sentences and feel completely satisfied. Continue reading