Month: July 2017

Uncomplicating Prayer

Uncomplicating Prayer

Prayer in its simplest form is a conversation between yourself and God.  However, many women find it intimidating to pray.  What is it about prayer that makes some of us feel so ill at ease?  For some, it’s determining the appropriate posture, others struggle with what to say and/or how to say it, and many women wonder just how long their prayer should be.  If prayer has served as a source of intimidation for you, it is my prayer that this post will help to put your mind at ease.

Posturing for Prayer

Let’s begin with posture.  Whether you’re sitting, standing, or kneeling is insignificant.  Praying in a position that is comfortable for you, is what is important.  This is key because you want to be able to focus on your conversation with God and not on pain resulting from being in an uncomfortable position.  So, sit, stand, or kneel, whatever works for you.  We have been conditioned to pray with our eyes closed and for me personally it helps me to block everything out and focus, but if you prefer to keep your eyes open then do so

What to Say/How to Say/How Long to Say

Many erroneously believe that their prayer must be formal, filled with thees and thous or “big” words.  God is not impressed with our vocabulary or lack thereof, formality, or marathon prayers.  Matthew 6:7(NLT) confirms this: “And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words”.  What He does what is honesty and sincerity; Simply talk to Him in your normal voice and tone openly.

Prayer need not be an act that causes you to feel intimidated or awkward.  Close your eyes or leave them open, take a deep breath, and let your words flow out.  Talk to your heavenly Father as you would to your best friend and when you’re done don’t forget to take the time to listen for any words He may have for you.

Happiness For Sale?

Happiness For Sale?

The age-old question is: “can money buy happiness?”

Money cannot buy happiness because happiness is not for sale. 

Have you seen it in a jar, box, or bottle on the grocery store shelves?

Is it hanging on a department store rack?

Can you order it online?

What wholesale vendor can you place an order with?

Money can buy material things, trips, and pay off debt, which may bring a fleeting “sense” of happiness.

In the market for the authentic?  It’s free!

True and lasting happiness comes from within (knowing, accepting, and loving ourselves) and begins with a relationship with our Creator.   

The Other Fruit

The Other Fruit

It is common knowledge that fruit is good for us.  For us to maintain a well-balanced diet it is recommended that we eat four servings of this food group daily.  Weight loss coaches encourage us to replace the chips, cookies, and other less healthy snacks with an apple, orange, or berries.    Studies show that certain fruits are helpful in preventing and minimizing the symptoms of certain ailments such as lemons for digestive tract issues and cherries for inflammatory pain relief.

While it is a proven fact that fruit is indeed good for our bodies, it doesn’t end there.  Fruit is essential for our spirit as well.  “How so?” you ask.  Galatians 5:22-23(NIV) lists the fruit that should be a regular part of every Christian’s diet:  love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

We cannot purchase this fruit in a grocery store or a farmer’s market and although we can find just about everything at Wal-Mart, we won’t find it there either.  The fruit that is spoken of in these Galatian verses, doesn’t come from outside of us but is produced in us by the Holy Spirit.  The key word in the sentence above is produced.  We aren’t born with the “fruit of the Spirit”; It begins to grow in us when we receive salvation and begin to live for Christ.  As we continuously grow in our relationship with God, the fruit continuously grows within us.

When we are driving down the road and see the big yellow “M” we recognize that there’s a McDonald’s nearby.   Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on the situation, our kids recognize it too.  When we see the swoosh symbol we know the shoes or garment is a Nike product.  These logos do what they were designed to do, they make their brand easily identifiable.   Likewise, when others see love, joy, peace and the other six fruits in us, they recognize us as followers of Christ.

Follow the recommended dietary allowance and get your daily four, but while you’re filling up on apples, bananas, and pears, don’t forget about the other fruit.  Make sure you get these nine nutrients too:   love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.  The fruit that feeds our spirit.