How To Get Answered Prayer

Today is Wednesday (already?), August 24, 2016. 51 days until Galveston!

Quote of the Day

“If the Sun and Moon should ever doubt, they’d immediately go out.” – William Blake

Word of the Day

Thrummy – of or abounding in thrums; shaggy or tufted.

Today is Pluto Demoted Day. Maybe a presidential campaign should be “Make Pluto a Planet Again!” Poor Pluto.

For an added bonus (no extra charge), it is also International Strange Music Day I think this qualifies.

There is more to celebrate for R’s success. As noted yesterday, she got her LPC license. She has also been offered more guaranteed hours at the hospital in Denton, where she has been working on an “on-call” basis. So she is able to quit her data entry job, which is in Carrollton, and a second shift job. Plus she gets a raise at the hospital because she now has her license! Things are finally going well for her, which I think I can safely say she deserves, because she has worked very hard for all of this. We will be celebrating big, this weekend, for these things, as well as for J’s birthday, which was the same day as S’s.

The Red Sox held on to beat the Rays 2-1, last night, maintaining their first place tie with the Boo Jays. Clay Buchholz actually pitched well. We do believe in miracles! The Rangers, on the other hand, continue to struggle with the last place teams, losing to the Reds (whose record is almost exactly the opposite of theirs) 3-0. Dutch Oven returned, and seems to have pitched quite well. He just got no run support. They play one more tonight, before coming home to face the Indians, who now have the best record in the AL.

Tonight is our Anchor prayer gathering. Twice a month, we gather in someone’s home to pray for needs of the church and our world. If you have anything you would like us to pray for, leave a note, either here or on Facebook.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

(From Praying With the Psalms)

Then the anger of the LORD was kindled against his people, and he abhorred his heritage;
he gave them into the hand of the nations, so that those who hated them ruled over them.
Their enemies oppressed them, and they were brought into subjection under their power.
Many times he delivered them, but they were rebellious in their purposes and were brought low through their iniquity.
Nevertheless, he looked upon their distress, when he heard their cry.
For their sake he remembered his covenant, and relented according to the abundance of his steadfast love.
He caused them to be pitied by all those who held them captive.
Psalm 106:40-46

We typically connect cause and effect with the word therefore. In our case, though, God connects them with the word nevertheless. We expect damnation for our sin, but when we believe Jesus Christ, we get salvation. “‘Nevertheless’ is one of the most important words in Scripture, for it miraculously joins human sin with God’s salvation.”

“What a happy discovery, O God, to find that each act of confession is not an occasion for condemnation but an experience of your forgiveness: ‘Make mercy in all of us, out of us all/Mastery, but be adored, but be adored King’ (Gerard Manley Hopkins, ‘The Wreck of the Deutschland’). Amen.”

(From My Utmost For His Highest)

The Spiritual Index

Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Matthew 7:9

In this illustration of prayer, Jesus speaks of “a good child asking for a good thing.” We tend to think about prayer “as if God heard us irrespective of the fact of our relationship to Him.” Rather than proclaiming that it wasn’t God’s will to give us what we asked for, perhaps we should step back and “find out the reason, turn up the index.” There is always someone proclaiming that God doesn’t answer prayer, but if you look at their lives, you see why. Why should God answer the prayer of someone who is consistently disobedient to him??

Are we rightly related to our family, to our work associates? What about other matters? Are we asking God for money when we haven’t paid someone we owe? Are we expecting liberty when we have not granted someone the same? And what about forgiveness? Are we expecting God to forgive us when we refuse to forgive someone in our lives? So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets. (Matthew 7:12)

“I am a child of God only by regeneration, and as a child of God I am good only as I walk in the light. Prayer with most of us is turned into pious platitude, it is a matter of emotion, mystical communion with God.”

When Jesus said, “Everyone that asks receives,” he was speaking of people who are “good children.”

Father, I pray to be a “good child.” I will spend part of this day, as already planned, being specifically obedient to something that you have placed in my heart. I pray that this will reap answered prayers. I am confident that it will reap closer devotion to you through Jesus. Let my prayer/reading times today be deep, drawing me into closer communion with you.

Come, Lord Jesus!

“In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.” . . . Therefore the LORD waits to be gracious to you, and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy to you. For the LORD is a God of justice; blessed are all those who wait for him. (Isaiah 30:15, 18)

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