Watchman Fellowship recommends the following resources on Centering / Contemplative Prayer;
Encyclopedia of New Age Beliefs, by John Ankerberg and John Weldon
Watchman Fellowship recommends the following resources on Centering / Contemplative Prayer;
Encyclopedia of New Age Beliefs, by John Ankerberg and John Weldon
All back from this mornings trip to the hospital. Adrian is still yellow and his bilirubin levels high. We will be taking him back tomorrow morning for more tests. If his liver does not start processing toxins more effectively by tomorrow morning they are going to start treatment.
Between the broken clavicle during deliver and the liver problems he is getting a rough start in life. However, we are very grateful to God for this little boy. I was unable to make it to church this morning because of these circumstances, so I spent a little time reflecting upon this quote from Jerry Bridges;
Prayer assumes the sovereignty of God. If God is not sovereign, we have no assurance that He is able to answer our prayers. Our prayers would become nothing more than wishes. But while God’s sovereignty, along with His wisdom and love, is the foundation of our trust in Him, prayer is the expression of trust.
So, your “expression of trust” for our little Adrian is gratefully appreciated.
Some great Jerry Bridges books:
Adrian Boethius Criswell Stilley was born at 2:48 a.m. on Thursday September 18. Like most Stilley’s, he did not want to get out of his comfort zone so they broke his shoulder while exercising some tough love in separating him from his mother. His liver is not functioning quite like it should be, but they are allowing us to bring him home today and we have to take him back in tomorrow (Sunday) morning at 9:00 a.m. for them to see him.
Praise God from whom all blessings flow … [Read more…]
Hindsight may be 20-20, but foresight is 40-40. At least that is how Southern Baptists see it.
I have not yet determined exactly how, but it is my intention to participate at some level and hope to involve the students in my Western Civilization classes in the 40/40 Prayer Vigil for Spiritual Revival and National Renewal that is being planned by Southern Baptists. [Read more…]
1. The first and chief need of our Christian life is, Fellowship with God. The Divine life within us comes from God, and is entirely dependent upon Him. As I need every moment afresh the air to breathe, as the s sun every moment afresh sends down its light, so it is only in direct living communication with God that my soul can be strong. The manna of one day was corrupt when the next day came. I must every day have fresh grace from heaven, and I obtain it only in direct waiting upon God Himself. Begin each day by tarrying before God, and letting Him touch you. Take time to meet God.
2. To this end, let your first act in your devotion be a setting yourself still before God. In prayer, or worship, everything depends upon God taking the chief place. I must bow quietly before Him in humble faith and adoration, speaking thus within my heart: “God is. God is near. God is love, longing to communicate Himself to me. God the Almighty One, Who worketh all in all, is even now waiting to work in me, and make Himself known.” Take time, till you know God is very near.
3. When you have given God His place of honor, glory, and power, take your place of deepest lowliness, and seek to be filled with the Spirit of humility. As a creature it is your blessedness to be nothing, that God may be all in you. As a sinner you are not worthy to look up to God; bow in self abasement. As a saint, let God’s love overwhelm you, and bow you still lower down. Sink down before Him in humility, meekness, patience, and surrender to His goodness and mercy. He will exalt you. Oh! take time, to get very low before God.
4. Then accept and value your place in Christ Jesus. God delights in nothing but His beloved Son, and can be satisfied with nothing else in those who draw nigh to Him. Enter deep into God’s holy presence in the boldness which the blood gives, and in the assurance that in Christ you are most well-pleasing. In Christ you are within the veil. You have access into the very heart and love of the Father. This is the great object of fellowship with God, that I may have more of God in my life, and that God may see Christ formed in me. Be silent before God and let Him bless you.
5. This Christ is a living Person. He loves you with a personal love, and He looks every day for the personal response of your love. Look into His face with trust, till His love really shines into your heart. Make His heart glad by telling Him that you do love Him. He offers Himself to you as a personal Saviour and Keeper from the power of sin. Do not ask, can I be kept from sinning, if I keep close to Him? but ask, can I be kept from sinning, if He always keeps close to me? and you see at once how safe it is to trust Him.
6. We have not only Christ’s life in us as a power, and His presence with us as a person, but we have His likeness to be wrought into us. He is to be formed in us, so that His form or figure, His likeness, can be seen in us. Bow before God until you get some sense of the greatness and blessedness of the work to be carried on by God in you this day. Say to God, “Father, here am I for Thee to give as much in me of Christ’s likeness as I can receive.” And wait to hear Him say, “My child, I give thee as much of Christ as thy heart is open to receive.” The God who revealed Jesus in the flesh and perfected Him, will reveal Him in thee and perfect thee in Him. The Father loves the Son, and delights to work out His image and likeness in thee. Count upon it that this blessed work will be done in thee as thou waitest on thy God, and holdest fellowship with Him.
7. The likeness to Christ consists chiefly in two things–the likeness of His death and resurrection, (Rom. 6:5). The death of Christ was the consummation of His humility and obedience, the entire giving up of His life to God. In Him we are dead to sin. As we sink down in humility and dependence and entire surrender to God, the power of His death works in us, and we are made conformable to His death. And so we know Him in the power of His resurrection, in the victory over sin, and all the joy and power of the risen life. Therefore every morning, “present yourselves unto God as those that are alive from the dead.” He will maintain the life He gave, and bestow the grace to live as risen ones.
8. All this can only be in the power of the Holy Spirit, who dwells in you. Count upon Him to glorify Christ in you. Count upon Christ to increase in you the inflowing of His Spirit. As you wait before God to realize His presence, remember that the Spirit is in you to reveal the things of God. Seek in God’s presence to have the anointing of the Spirit of Christ so truly that your whole life may every moment be spiritual.
9. As you meditate on this wondrous salvation and seek full fellowship with the great and holy God, and wait on Him to reveal Christ in you, you will feel how needful the giving up of all is to receive Him. Seek grace to know what it means to live as wholly for God as Christ did. Only the Holy Spirit Himself can teach you what an entire yielding of the whole life to God can mean. Wait on God to show you in this what you do not know. Let every approach to God, and every request for fellowship with Him be accompanied by a new, very definite, and entire surrender to Him to work in you.
10. “By faith” must here, as through all Scripture, and all the spiritual life, be the keynote. As you tarry before God, let it be in a deep quiet faith in Him, the Invisible One, who is so near, so holy, so mighty, so loving. In a deep, restful faith too, that all the blessings and powers of the heavenly life are around you, and in you. Just yield yourself in the faith of a perfect trust to the Ever Blessed Holy Trinity to work out all God’s purpose in you. Begin each day thus in fellowship with God, and God will be all in all to you.
According to Proverbs 18:17, “The first to present his case seems right, till another comes forward and questions him.” However, such questioning is often uncomfortable, and can lead to less than appreciative responses. Especially if the questioner used sarcasm to drive home his point. If you don’t believe me, just ask Socrates — oh, you can’t because he is dead from being forced to drink hemlock after playing the gadfly one too many times (that, and the fact that he lived more than two millennia ago).
Some consider sarcasm, satire, and parody to be inappropriate for the Christian at all times. [Read more…]
I would like to ask that you join my family in praying for Scotte Hodel. I have enjoyed getting to know him a little over the last two years of blogging. He has been fighting the battle against cancer for a number of months now. Those of you who have gone through this struggle yourself, or have loved ones who have, know just how tiring it can become. So, I ask that you pray God will give both him and his family strength, wisdom, encouragement, and healing. You can read Scotte’s blog by clicking here. Swing by there and let him know you are praying for him.
And, here is a YouTube video he made that will further introduce you to him.
The following text is a transcript of remarks by the President at National Prayer Breakfast:
THE PRESIDENT: Gracias, mi amigo. Thank you, friend. Laura and I are honored to join you all here for the 56th National Prayer Breakfast. A lot of reasons to pray, and one of course, is to strengthen us against temptation, particularly this morning — from temptation to stay in bed. (Laughter.) Obviously there’s a lot of prayerful people here. And I appreciate your warm welcome.
We have a lot of distinguished guests here today — members of Congress, military leaders, captains of industry. Yet at this annual gathering, we are reminded of an eternal truth: When we lift our hearts to God, we’re all equal in His sight. We’re all equally precious; we’re all equally dependent on His grace. It’s fitting that we gather each year to approach our Creator in fellowship — and to thank Him for the many blessings He has bestowed upon our families and our nation. It is fitting that we gather in prayer, because we recognize a prayerful nation is a stronger nation. (Applause.)
I want to appreciate — I appreciate Senator Salazar and Enzi. Thank you for putting this deal on. Madam Speaker, Leader Hoyer, Leader Blunt, thank you all for being here. Welcome the members of Congress. I appreciate the heads of state who are here. Welcome to America, again. I thank the members of the Diplomatic Corps who have joined us. Appreciate the distinguished dignitaries, all the members of my Cabinet — don’t linger, get back to work. (Laughter.)
Admiral, thank you for your leadership. Always proud to be with the members of the United States military. I thank the state and local officials. Ward, thanks for your remarks. Those were awesome. I guess that’s a presidential word. (Laughter.) Proud to be here with Michael W. and Debbie. They’re longtime friends of our family. Thank you for lending your beautiful voice. Judge, I’m not going to hold the Texas thing against you. (Laughter.)
Every President since Dwight Eisenhower has attended the National Prayer Breakfast — and I am really proud to carry on that tradition. It’s an important tradition, and I’m confident Presidents who follow me will do the same. The people in this room come from many different walks of faith. Yet we share one clear conviction: We believe that the Almighty hears our prayers — and answers those who seek Him. That’s what we believe; otherwise, why come? Through the miracle of prayer, we believe he listens — if we listen to his voice and seek our presence — his presence in our lives, our hearts will change. And in so doing, in seeking God, we grow in ways that we could never imagine.
In prayer, we grow in gratitude and thanksgiving. When we spend time with the Almighty, we realize how much He has bestowed upon us — and our hearts are filled with joy. We give thanks for our families, we give thanks for the parents who raised us, we give thanks for the patient souls who married us, and the children who make us proud each day. We give thanks for our liberty — and the universal desire for freedom that He has written into every human heart. We give thanks for the God who made us in His image — and redeemed us in His love.
In prayer, we grow in meekness and humility. By approaching our Maker on bended knee, we acknowledge our complete dependence on Him. We recognize that we have nothing to offer God that He does not already have — except our love. So we offer Him that love, and ask for the grace to discern His will. We ask Him to remain near to us at all times. We ask Him to help us lead lives that are pleasing to Him. We discover that by surrendering our lives to the Almighty, we are strengthened, refreshed, and ready for all that may come.
In prayer, we also grow in boldness and courage. The more time we spend with God, the more we see that He is not a distant king, but a loving Father. Inspired by this confidence, we approach Him with bold requests: We ask Him to heal the sick, and comfort the dying, and sustain those who care for them. We ask Him to bring solace to the victims of tragedy, and help to those suffering from addiction and adversity. We ask him to strengthen our families, and to protect the innocent and vulnerable in our country. We ask Him to protect our nation from those who wish us harm — and watch over all who stepped forward to defend us. We ask Him to bring about the day when His peace shall reign across the world — and every tear shall be wiped away.
In prayer, we grow in mercy and compassion. We are reminded in prayer that we are all fallen creatures in need of mercy. And in seeking God’s mercy, we grow in mercy ourselves. Experiencing the presence of God transforms our hearts — and the more we seek His presence, the more we feel the tug at our souls to reach out to the poor, and the hungry, the elderly, and the infirm. When we answer God’s call to love a neighbor as ourselves, we enter into a deeper friendship with our fellow man — and a deeper relationship with our eternal Father.
I believe in the power of prayer, because I have felt it in my own life. Prayer has strengthened me in times of personal challenge. It has helped me meet the challenges of the presidency. I understand now clearly the story of the calm in the rough seas. And so at this final prayer breakfast as your President, I thank you for your prayers, and I thank our people all across America for their prayers. And I ask you not to stop in the year ahead. We have so much work to do for our country, and with the help of the Almighty, we will build a freer world — and a safer, more hopeful, more noble America.
A little girl, dressed in her Sunday best, was running as fast as she could, trying not to be late for Bible class. As she ran she prayed, “Dear Lord, please don’t let me be late! Dear Lord, please don’t let me be late!” While she was running and praying, she tripped on a curb and fell — getting her clothes dirty and tearing her dress. She got up, brushed herself off, and started running again. As she ran she once again began to pray, “Dear Lord, please don’t let me be late . . . But please don’t shove me either!”
The greatest thing anyone can do for God and man is pray. It is not the only thing, but it is the cheif thing. The great people of Earth are the people who pray. I do not mean those who talk about prayer; nor those who say they believe in prayer; nor yet those who can explain about prayer; but I mean those people who take time to pray.
— S. D. Gordon