by Brenda Johnson
Making the Bible “come alive in prayer” means praying God’s Word back to Him. It means to speak prophetically over your desires, concerns, needs, issues, and problems.
It seems easy enough when we simply repeat or quote a scripture, ex., Is 53:5, “…by His stripes I am healed…”
Often our prayers are for selfish reasons rather than the desires of God. Yes, He wants us healed, but our innermost motive to quote this verse may be just to get out of an affliction or discomfort. Not realizing that God is using it for greater purposes. His purpose is for the life of your soul.
Going a little deeper into our prayer using this scripture means peeling away what God may be showing us in the way He wants us to be healed.
Is. 53:5 (NKJV) “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.”
Redirect your prayer focus differently.
Start by reflecting upon “the woundedness He suffered for your transgressions.” Think about it!
The center of our affliction might be our transgressions. Our healing just may come from our sorrowful confessions rather than simply quoting scripture.
What do I mean?
For example; to get healing from hypertension headaches, perhaps we may need to pray for forgiveness for dishonoring the temple, our body, by poor eating habits, alcoholism, or something else. Or perhaps offering in a prayer of confession unforgiveness held toward someone for a hurt, word, or injustice against us.
His stripes become our stripes (headaches), rather than the enjoyment of peace for unconfessed sin.
Prayer should be directed to Him not in vain repetition or following traditions, but it should be from the heart. Contemplate His Word and be reflective of our own words and thoughts.
By habitual repetition we will quote Matt. 5:9-13, the Lord's Prayer, Psalm 23, and say “grace” at mealtime.
We do not wish to negate repeating these scriptures or a heartfelt prayer you have learned. What we want to do here is emphasize making the Bible come alive in our prayers by going deeper in understanding scripture and what we can do and say to bring it to life for our needs.
Whether recitation, speaking the Word, or delving deeper into your heart during prayer, remember to speak life and enjoy the Word coming alive in you.
by Terry Warner
Happy New Year to all who venture to read this!
We traditionally send happy wishes to family and friends during the first few days of January. What do we really mean by our well wishes? What does it really mean to be happy? Have you ever wondered what it would take to make you happy?
Solomon had everything life had to offer, so what did he have to say? There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven. God granted Solomon wisdom which was and still is pleasing to God. Solomon submitted to God’s authority and showed honor by prioritizing his life to glorify God. We too are to prioritize our time and all the things we do in our life to the glory of God.
My memory verse for this year is Proverbs 21:21 which says: ”He that follows after righteousness and mercy finds life, righteousness, and honor.” I do like practical ways to contemplate and plan how I will navigate the new year. I enjoy self-reflection and self-improvement as my new year’s resolutions. Please join me in evaluating the best plan to obtain happiness continuing into 2023.
First, prayer should be the number one priority for every believer. Talking to God about our day and the interactions with the people we encounter is imperative to actively glorify God. I suggest that you take the first moment you wake up in the morning to express thankfulness and gratitude to our Creator. Then, the next thing directed to God should be the question, “Lord, what would you like from me today?” Finally, find a daily devotional or a reading of scripture that speaks best to you. Starting a routine of this will hopefully give you a desire for more daily direction from the Holy Spirit.
Second, cultivate new and old relationships continually bringing honor and glory to Jesus. All of us encounter people who are difficult to love, so did Jesus. Think of someone you need to exemplify the Lord’s unconditional love to. It could be a daily challenge to love the unlovely or make time for others. If you need some guidance in dealing with different people and interaction situations, read Tammy Melton’s book on “Refining Relationships.” Also, let’s all keep in communion with one another by encouraging our efforts through our monthly “Whole Life Today” group on Tuesday nights 7-8 pm through Zoom.
Finally, don’t forget to give the best care you can give to yourself. Remember, there are times that it is very healthy to think of yourself first. You are very important! You are not able to do your best in the good work for Jesus or serve others if you are not the best version of yourself. So please be very proactive in self-care! Your mind, body, and soul will thank you.
God Bless you as you become the very best person you were created to be, this year of 2024 and beyond!
About Rays of Light:
Whereas most blogs are from one writer, these posts are from a variety of authors and styles. These scribes all attend our Kingdom Writers group. We pray our passion to share God's love through writing will encourage you today!
Our writers group meets every 4th Tuesday Night at 7PM in person and/or via zoom. Let us know if you would like to join us.