Posted in Sunday's Supplications

Pursue a Love Relationship

 

Sunday’s Supplications

Sunday’s Supplications invites you to not only read the posts but also participate in the prayers. Each week, I hope to introduce a new theme and prayer focus. You are welcome to print off and use each prayer provided, either verbatim or adapted for your particular circumstance. Even better, you can construct your own prayer and share with others by linking to this post. Please note, you do not have to be a blogger to participate.

*****   *****   *****

 

 

I love the Lord, because He has heard

My voice and my supplications.

Because He has inclined His ear to me,

Therefore I will call upon Him

As long as I live.

(Psalms 116:1-2 NKJV)

 

Do you love the Lord?

Really love him that is – not just have an affection for him, not just feel a fondness for him, not just have a religious fervour regarding him which is only acted upon at church, whenever you choose to attend.

Do you love God beyond what you may articulate with your lips? Do you demonstrate that love with your lifestyle?

To love God is to obey him – John 14:15

To love God is to trust him – 1 John 4:18

To love God is to yield to his Word, his ways and his will – Deuteronomy 10:12

Dear reader, perhaps you used to love God but you’ve left your first love (see Revelations 2:4), i.e. you’ve abandoned your original commitment and allegiance to him, you’ve become lukewarm spiritually.

Perhaps the fervent love you once had for God, for his Son, Jesus, for the things pertaining to God’s kingdom has now lost its spiritual vitality and deteriorated into a religious routine.

Dear Women of Warfare visitor, there is no better position in life, no safer place to be than to find yourself firmly ensconced within the loving arms and nurturing bosom of our dear Father-God.

When you love the Lord your God, with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, when you seek intimate fellowship with him, Psalm 91:14-16 promises the following benefits:

  • Deliverance
  • Safety and divine protection
  • Promotion
  • Answers to prayer
  • A concerned response to your cries for help
  • A long, satisfying life

Now who doesn’t want, or need these things?

 

This Week’s Prayer Focus:

Do you need to give yourself a spiritual health check-up?

Do you know someone who used to have a passion for the Lord and the kingdom of God but has either fallen away completely, or has become backslidden in their heart?

Let’s pray both for ourselves and for those who have wandered from God’s pathway.

(Prayer warriors and interns – remember to put on your spiritual armour before entering the battlefield!)

*****   *****   *****

Dear merciful and ever-loving father,

I want to thank you that your arms are always open in welcome towards your children. I want to thank you for your open invitation to visit your throne-room and make my requests and petitions to you.

Lord God, my heart’s desire is to love you wholeheartedly and without distraction. I ask that you search my heart, that you remove any areas of fickleness from within me. I ask that you continue to guide and establish me in your paths of right-thinking and right-living.

Father-God, hear my petition today. Watch over the lives of my brothers and sisters in Christ, who are among my blog followers and visitors. Grant my request that you stir up within each one an increasing hunger and passion to know you and regularly fellowship with you.

I pray for those sons and daughters within the circle of our influence, who once knew you, who once served you but have left your path of life and light. I ask that you turn their hearts back to you.

Deliver them from the captivity of the Enemy, who has blinded their heart, mind and understanding. Deliver them from the snares of materialism, self-gratification and pride of life. Open their spiritual eyes that they may see and appreciate the reality of sin’s corrosive world of darkness, which both woos and envelops them. Deliver them from every plan, scheme and strategy of Satan designed to further entrap them.

Loving Father-God, deliver your backslidden children from the evil clutches of the Enemy. Cause the glorious light of your gospel to shine once again in their hearts and steer them towards your highway of holiness.

In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

© Carol Hind

 

There’s absolutely no obligation to do so but if you are committed to revitalizing your prayer life, if you have prayed the above prayer (or any of the Sunday’s Supplication prayers), please let me know in the comment box below or via my Contact Page. I’d love to hear from you.

Women of Warfare followers and visitors, may this week find you drawing ever closer to God.

 

CREDIT: the above image comes courtesy of Getty Images

Posted in Soul Surgery

His Healing Balm

 

Why is my pain perpetual

And my wound incurable,

Which refuses to be healed?

(Jeremiah 15:18a NKJV)

 

Is your soul in need of healing?

This blog exists because I have a desire to encourage the people of God, particularly women, to walk victoriously, to reign in whatever circumstance they may find themselves in, which the Enemy may have orchestrated, or which has occurred as a result of their own disobedience to, and rebellion against God.

This blog exists to encourage you dear reader in your journey through life.

Do you need soul surgery?

Do you need to experience the healing balm of God’s unconditional love and mercy?

Then spend time in his presence.

He loves you. Absolutely.

He cares for you. Without the shadow of a doubt!

He hurts with and for you. Listen to what his Word says:

 

You have seen me tossing and turning through the night. You have collected all my tears and preserved them in your bottle! You have recorded every one (i.e. each tear) in your book.

(Psalm 56:8 The Living Bible)

 

My Father-God has your very best interests as a primary concern upon his heart. So don’t let anything or anyone (not even yourself!) convince you otherwise.

Trust him. Yield to him. Seek to obey him.

Allow Jehovah-Rophe (the Lord God your healer) into those areas that have been bludgeoned by the merciless clubs of rejection and pierced by the swords of betrayal.

Allow him to begin that healing process TODAY.

I close this message with a few quotes that I trust will speak meaningfully to you and encourage you.

 

Healing doesn’t mean the damage never existed. It means the damage no longer controls our lives. (author unknown)

 

For every negative there is a possible, for every failure there is success and for every broken heart there is someone out there to help you mend it, you just have to have faith and believe that even though the clouds are out, the sun will shine on your life again. (Rashida Rowe)

 

The day you let go of hurt and embrace healing is the day you will start to move forward in your life (Rashida Rowe)

 

Hate is self-destructive. If you hate somebody, you’re not hurting the person you hate. You’re hurting yourself. And that’s a healing. Actually, it’s a real healing, forgiveness. (Louis Zamperini)

 

Faith is the cure that heals all troubles. Without faith there is no hope and no love. Faith comes before hope, and before love. (Malika E. Nura)

 

Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed;

Save me, and I shall be saved,

For you are my praise.

(Jeremiah 17:14 NKJV)

 

Women of Warfare followers and visitors – have a wonderful and peace-filled weekend.

 

CREDIT: the above CC0 image comes courtesy of Arek Socha at Pixabay.com

Posted in Blog posts

News! News! News!

TODAY’S BAD NEWS…

 

  • Scramble to recall 700k poison eggs
  • Food expert asks: Can we be sure baked goods are safe?
  • Record high of 4m wait for NHS ops
  • Be very, very nervous… Trump ramps up tension
  • Slavery and trafficking is ‘in every city and big town’

 

TODAY’S GOOD NEWS…

 

My God is alive!

My God is an unchanging God!

My God reigns supreme in heaven and earth!

My God’s thoughts towards me are more numerous than the grains of sand!

My God is able to cause all things to work together for my good!

My God loves me with an everlasting, extravagant and unconditional love.

My God is an awesome God!

 

 

 

Today, fill your heart with the good news of the gospel. Have a blessed weekend!

 

CREDIT: CC0 image courtesy of Gerd Altmann at Pixabay.com

Posted in Praise Prayer Worship

Whether Broken Hearts or Celestial Spheres…

 

PRAISE PRAYER & WORSHIP WEDNESDAY

During my quiet time this morning, I was reflecting on a facet of God’s amazing greatness.

You see the evening before, I’d been feeling tired and demotivated. And even though I felt I should get up from my settee and do something constructive towards my goals, after a long day at work, I just didn’t feel like doing anything. I had neither the energy nor the inclination. And so I gave in to my feelings.

As I prepared to spend time in God’s presence the following morning, I thought about how God never gets tired and his interest in us never wanes. It caused me to be thankful that he is who he is and that I can depend upon him to always be the same.

Today I want to give my Father God thanks and praise because no matter how I feel, no matter what I have done (or not done), no matter whether I feel too tired, or too discouraged to spend time with him, He will never change!

He will always love me. He will always welcome me into his presence.

Our God will never be too busy to hear our prayers (or our complaints). He will never be too cross or offended, to care about our needs.

Psalm 147:3-4 tells us that:

  1. He heals the broken-hearted and binds up their wounds
  2. He counts the number of stars and calls them all by name.

 

Now that set me thinking. I wondered, what is the connection between wounded hearts and stars?

The answer that came to my heart was this:

Whether a matter is great or small, nothing escapes God’s notice. It may be as hidden and seemingly insignificant as a broken heart, or as conspicuous and majestic as the stars, God notices. And whilst we may look up and just see a mass of stars, God looks and sees individual celestial bodies. He knows how many there are and he even names them.

Beloved reader, he sees you. He cares about you more than you can ever comprehend.

What a wonderful, wonderful God we serve. Is he not worthy of our heartfelt praise?

 

Praise:

Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised;

And His greatness is unsearchable.

(Psalm 145:3)

 

Prayer:

Dear Father God,

How wonderful you are. You are beyond comprehension. It’s just mind-boggling to know that one so great, so perfect, so holy would deign to love a fickle, imperfect and sinful people. Thank you for reaching down and offering us a new life on a higher plane.

Open our eyes Lord that we might see you in the beauty of your holiness, that we might appreciate your greatness and glory. Open our hearts Lord that we might love and worship you the way you truly deserve.

Amen.

 

Worship:

 

 

 Women of Warfare followers and visitors have a blessed week!

 

**************

Credits: CC0 Images used are courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

Posted in Sunday's Supplications

A Spiritual Gauntlet!

Sunday’s Supplications (4)

A command:

Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men

(1 Timothy 2:1 NKJV)

 

An inquiry:

Who did you pray for today?

Who did you pray for last week?

Who do you pray for regularly?

Do you enjoy a dynamic, effective and ongoing prayer life?

 

An invitation:

Sunday Supplications invites you to not only read the posts but also participate in the prayers. Each week, I hope to introduce a new theme and prayer focus. You are welcome to print off and use each prayer provided, either verbatim or adapted for your particular circumstance. Even better, you can construct your own prayer and share with others by linking to this post. Please note, you do not have to be a blogger to participate.

 

A specific purpose:

The aim of this feature is to:

  • encourage you to pray regularly
  • increase your confidence in prayer and
  • develop a praying community.

 

In Matthew 6:5-6, Jesus did not say “…if you pray” but “when you pray…”. To my mind, this means he expected his followers to pray.

 

I’m aware that there are all sorts of misunderstandings and misconceptions about prayer. I’m hoping this feature will help to dispel any myths you may entertain regarding this spiritual exercise. I’m hoping to motivate people to pray regularly and demonstrate how natural the act of prayer is, and how vital it is to our relationship with God and to fulfilling our responsibility to fellow members of His family.

 

A call to commitment:

Now commitment phobes, please don’t run scared. I am challenging myself and other Christian believers to step-up the quality of their prayer lives. As the saying goes: “two is better than one”. So think how much more effective, how much more supportive a prayer network (particularly a global prayer network) will be.

I can understand any reluctance to commit, or concern about letting anyone down. So here’s the deal. If you do decide to engage with this initiative, if you do decide to upgrade your prayer life, your decision can be between you and God alone—unless of course you choose to go public and share with the WoW community! But dear believer, I am asking you to make that commitment – a commitment to honour Christ’s expectation of his followers, a commitment to obey Paul’s direction in Ephesians 6:18, a commitment to pray.

You may sometimes fail to follow through. You may often find that you lack discipline, or the inclination. Your Father-God understands. In fact, the Word of God records Jesus as saying: “the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak”. So whilst you are forming, or renewing, or increasing your prayer habit, commit to whatever you feel comfortable with— a week at a time, a month, 6 months, or a year. Renew your commitment as and when you like. It is entirely up to you. I will not be holding anyone to account.

 

A spiritual gauntlet

Are you new to praying regularly?

Does your prayer life lack consistency, or authority and fervour?

Then I’m throwing down a spiritual gauntlet. I’m challenging you to do something about it NOW!

Don’t feel intimidated or overwhelmed. Tackle this prayer undertaking one step at a time. You don’t even have to find your own words, if that worries you. Simply pray the prepared prayer provided. I only ask that you pray it daily or weekly—not out of a sense of duty, not as an empty exercise, but with fervent sincerity.

By doing so, I believe your prayer life will change. By doing so, I believe your confidence in God will increase. By doing so, I believe your spiritual life and authority will move up a notch or two because obedience to God brings rich rewards.

Potential prayer warriors and interns, welcome aboard. Let’s build a vibrant praying community together.

One last thing, don’t forget to put on your spiritual armour before entering the battlefield!

 

This Week’s Prayer Focus:

Can we forget our natural inclinations to care only about me, myself and mine?

Can we pay heed to Paul’s instruction to Timothy and begin to pray for all men? I’m sure I don’t have to remind you that this reference includes women and children also! The more people that participate, the wider the coverage and the greater the impact.

This week, let’s focus on the men, women and children of our neighbourhoods, of our church communities, of our nations.

May God motivate his people all over this world to offer heartfelt supplications on behalf of others around them, and may he use these petitions to effect miraculous changes within the hearts and lives of individuals, including ourselves.

 

Lord God Almighty,

Even though you are sovereign, even though you possess all power and might, even though you have revealed your will for all men to enjoy an abundant life, perpetual peace and spiritual well-being, you have given us a free-will.

Father God, we are sorry for the times we have exercised our will contrary to your ways. We are sorry that in doing so, we have made a mess of our lives and of our world. We are sorry and we admit that we cannot conduct our lives appropriately, or guide ourselves onto the paths of our pre-ordained destiny, without your help. We ask that you come and take control. We invite you to come and bring order to our homes, to our communities, to our nations. We ask that you heal this world.

Come and change the hearts of men, women and children that are ignorant of, or antagonistic towards your holy Word, your wholesome ways and your perfect will. Lord God, touch the lives of your people whom you have called into your kingdom. Enlighten the eyes of our understanding and empower us to serve you and one another with unfeigned love and devotion.

Father God, we commit this appeal into your capable hands. We believe that there is nothing too difficult for you to do. We believe you have heard our prayers and therefore thank you for granting our requests. Amen.

© Carol Hind

 

Women of Warfare followers and visitors, have a wonderful and peace-filled week.

********   *******   *******

Now there’s absolutely no obligation to do so but if you are committing to upgrade your prayer life, if you have prayed the above prayer (or any of the Sunday Supplication prayers), please let me know in the comment box below. Thank you.

CREDIT: the above CC0 image comes courtesy of Marcia bispo Bença at Pixabay.com

Posted in Blog posts

Choosing a Journey of Joy

 

There was a song I used to sing in Sunday school that went something like this:

I’ve got joy, joy, joy, joy

Down in my heart,

Down in my heart,

Down in my heart,

Yes – I’ve got joy, joy, joy, joy

Down in my heart,

Down in my heart today.

 

As mentioned above, I used to sing it in Sunday school, yet if the truth be known, I really didn’t know what joy was. I suppose I thought it was just another word for happiness. I now know better.

I’ve since learned that joy is an ingredient of the fruit of the Spirit (see Galatians 5:22). I therefore now understand that JOY in the biblical sense can only be experienced by those who are born-again (i.e. who have committed their lives into God’s hands and accepted Jesus as their saviour and invited him to be their Lord).

Even so, I still didn’t have a full grasp of what JOY is, or what it looked like, other than I believed it was a higher, deeper expression of happiness.

Well, I recently came across a wonderful and insightful definition of this quality.

Bob and Debbie Gass, writers of UCB Word for Today  shares the following:

  • Happiness is external
  • Joy is internal
  • Happiness depends on outward circumstances
  • Joy depends on inward character
  • Happiness depends on what happens to us
  • Joy depends on who lives within us
  • Happiness is based on chance
  • Joy is based on choice.

Now it is obvious to me that happiness is an unstable emotion because it fluctuates. The pursuit of joy is therefore a wiser move. Why? Because Jesus says that the joy he gives, is a joy that remains:

These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.

(John 15:11 NKJV)

 

As a woman of God, desirous of reigning in life through the power of Christ and aiming to walk each day as a victorious overcomer, I’m making a conscious decision to choose joy.

What do you choose?

 

CREDIT: CC0 image from Pixabay.com 

Posted in Sunday's Supplications

Your Spiritual Confidante

 

Sunday’s Supplications (3)

 

6I am weary with my groaning;

All night I make my bed swim;

I drench my couch with my tears.

 

9…the Lord has heard the voice

of my weeping.

The Lord has heard my

supplication;

The Lord will receive my prayer.

(Psalm 6:6, 9 NKJV)

 

In the above quote, we read of David’s distress about his circumstances. What I love about this man is his total honesty. He does not say that he shed a few tears. He uses language that reveals his utter desolation and sense of hopelessness. His relationship with God is such that he feels able to be totally transparent and vulnerable.

Despite David’s despair, at some point during his communication with God, he receives an assurance that the Lord has heard his tears, heard his supplication and received his prayer.

Dear reader, let me ask you a question – do you have such a relationship with God that when you pray, you are confident he has heard you?

It is obvious from the Psalms that David’s relationship with God was of utmost importance to him. No wonder God declared: ‘…I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My own heart…’ (Acts 13:22 NKJV)

Fast forward through the pages of scripture and we meet another man, who is often referred to as the one whom Jesus loved (see John 13:23; 19:26; 20:2; 21:7, 20). This same disciple wrote:

Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.

And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.

(1 John 5:14-15 NKJV)

 

What is the thing that these two men of God from completely different eras share? It is their supreme confidence that God hears their prayers. And that confidence comes from maintaining a close relationship with the Lord.

And so let me ask another question:

How confident are you that God hears your prayers?

Women of Warfare readers, let me assure you today that we serve a God who hears and answers prayers.

 

This Week’s Prayer Focus:

Let us pray for ourselves and for one another that we will have a strong relationship with God, which leads to a heartfelt assurance that he hears our prayers.

PS: Don’t forget to put on your spiritual armour before entering the battlefield of prayer!

 

Father God,

I want to thank you for making me worthy to come into your holy presence. I want to thank you for granting me the privilege of entering into your throne room. I want to thank you for the precious blood of your Son, Jesus, which enables me to fellowship with you without fear or condemnation.

Lord God, you began this relationship when you bestowed your unconditional love upon me, when you accepted me into your family. I want to love you with all of my heart, soul and mind – the way you deserve and the way you command. I ask that you stir up within me an ever increasing desire to know you, to fellowship with you, to please and obey you.

Father God, I commit into your hands my brothers and sisters in Christ represented among the followers of, and visitors to this blog. I ask that during the days, weeks and months ahead you draw them into a closer relationship with you. And, as they draw near to you, I thank you for your promise that you will draw even nearer to them. I ask that this closeness will grant them complete confidence that you hear their prayers, that you are concerned about their welfare, that you are able to cause all things that occur in their lives to work together for their good, their benefit and their blessing.

Thank you for hearing my prayer and granting this request, which I ask in the name of Jesus. Amen.

© Carol Hind

 

Dear reader, God awaits you in his throne-room – will you keep that appointment, or will you be a “no show”?

Have a blessed week!

 

Posted in Blog posts

Rudeness, Respect and Reciprocation

 

 

Have you ever spoken to somebody and they didn’t answer you?

Have you ever made a request from someone but they did not respond?

How did it make you feel? Not blessed, I’m sure!

I know when I’ve been on the receiving end of such treatment, I don’t feel blessed. In fact such actions make me feel ignored, unimportant, even disrespected.

I recall a time when I submitted a piece of work to an editor, who wrote back expressing interest and indicating it would be published. I was over the moon. However, after this, I didn’t hear anything more. I waited. I wondered. I waited some more.

In the end, I contacted this editor to try and get an update. She didn’t respond. I waited a reasonable period and contacted her yet again. She still did not respond. I got the message but I felt upset and then angry.

In 1 Kings 18: 25-27 we read about the prophets of Baal, who called on their god from morning until noon but there was no answer.

As children of God, we enjoy the privilege of a loving relationship and can rest in the security of knowing that God hears us. We can be confident that he keeps his promises, yeah He honours his word.

Even should we feel that God has not granted our request, unlike the prophets of Baal, we can still be confident that he hasn’t abandoned us, that he is not unaware of our circumstances but has our best interests as a primary concern upon his heart.

In fact God’s word tells us that his thoughts towards us are innumerable.

 

How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!

How great is the sum of them!

If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand…

(Psalm 139:17-18 NKJV)

 

Whenever I read this, I am challenged. Do I feel similarly about my Father-God? Are most of my thoughts focused on Him?

What about you dear reader?

 

*****     *****     *****

 

Posted in Sunday's Supplications

Sunday’s Supplications (2)

 

Are you fretting over a problem that has your stomach tied in knots?

Do you feel anxious about a situation over which you have no control?

Have you lain awake worrying over what you should do, what path you should take, what decision you should make?

Dear reader, I’ve been there!

Listen to what the Word of God says:

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;

and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

 (Philippians 4:6-7 NKJV)

 

It was the year of 2009.

My mother had just celebrated her 80th birthday.

A medical consultant had advised me that she needed a bypass operation. My mother, who hated hospitals and preferred to trust God for healing, rather than place her confidence in man, did not know what to do. She consulted her pastor. She consulted me, as her eldest child.

I was perplexed about what I should advise her. If she did not go ahead there was a risk she could have a massive stroke. If she did go ahead there was a risk that this invasive operation could take her life. The fact that she was elderly, increased this risk. Would she survive?

I dearly loved my mother, did not want her to go and was not ready to let her go, especially in such circumstances. So what (I wondered), was the best thing to do?

If mum didn’t have the operation and had a stroke, I’d blame myself. If she did have the operation and died, I’d blame myself. I had visions of all the family turning against me.

In the end, after consulting family members, we agreed she should have the operation. However, I was not content to leave mum’s fate in the hands of the medical practitioners. I took every single element of the situation that I could think about to God and asked him to divinely protect her. I approached others and asked them to pray also.

Whilst the operation took place, one of my sisters and I, sat in the chapel downstairs, praying and interceding. I recall my sister and I sensing a breakthrough and feeling confident and exuberant. Yet, when the operation took longer than anticipated, I remember my heart thudding with fear and me beginning to think the worst had happened.

Whilst outwardly thanking God for hearing our prayers and granting our requests, there was a moment when I stood outside the theatre ward inwardly bracing myself for unwelcome news.

God be praised! The operation was successful and the theatre nurses expressed amazement about how young my mother looked, given her age and how fresh, given what she had just undergone. We were absolutely overjoyed.

Dear friends, we serve a mighty God!

To conclude, let me share the following footnote in my Bible, which relates to the above verse. It says:

Prayer and peace are closely connected. One who entrusts cares to Christ instead of fretting over them will experience the peace of God to guard him from nagging anxiety.

(Spirit Filled Life Bible NKJV)

 

This Week’s Prayer Focus:

Women of Warfare followers and visitors, let’s commit our cares and concerns into God’s capable hands. And let us not forget our brothers and sisters in Christ who are currently struggling with anxiety.

 

Father God,

Your Word says I should roll my cares upon you because you care and will continue to care for me. I thank you that you are not only aware of my problems but you are also able to resolve them.

Father God, I realise that allowing anxiety to consume me is not going to change the situation. I acknowledge that I am powerless to change the winds of ill-fortune that blow my way. Help me to look to you, to trust in you and to rest in the knowledge that you can cause all things to work together for my good.

Heavenly Father, I call upon you today on behalf of all those within the circle of my influence who are worrying about their problems. In particular, I cry out to you for those within the Body of Christ who are perplexed, who feel they don’t know where to turn, or what to do.

Minister your peace to them. Minister the peace that surpasses their understanding. Enable them to take their eyes off the greatness of their need and focus them upon the greatness of their God. Help them to fix their eyes upon Jesus, who is the author and finisher of our faith. Grant them wisdom to make the right decisions. And, in situations where your supernatural intervention is required, manifest your authority, might and power.

I ask in faith and I ask in the matchless name of Jesus. Amen.

© Carol Hind

 

PS: Don’t forget to put on your spiritual armour before entering the battlefield of prayer!

 

WoW followers and visitors, have a peace-filled week!

 

CREDIT: The above CC0 images are from Pixabay.com

 

Posted in Sunday's Supplications

Sunday’s Supplications

 

 

…praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—

(Ephesians 6:18 NKJV)

 

Hello visiting friends and followers,

I’d like to introduce a new feature and I do hope you will not only enjoy reading the posts in this new category but will also participate in the prayers.

On checking my dictionary today for the definition of “supplication”, I learned that it is a humble and earnest request made to someone for something. Further, I discovered that the word has Latin origins (supplicare, supplicatum), meaning “to kneel”.

Perhaps the idea of offering supplications seems a little alien to you but, if you were to cast your mind back to some of those old fashioned films, you might recall seeing a king, or some other figure of authority seated upon a throne, and a subject kneeling before that person to beg for their own life or the life of someone else, or to plead for a favour on behalf of another.

Indeed, in the Bible, we read of a situation, where Haman who had plotted to exterminate the Jews, finds the tables turned upon himself and in desperation he offers supplications to Queen Esther, pleading that she save his life (see Esther 7:7).

As children of God, we have a Heavenly Father to whom we can address our prayers and offer our supplications. As members of the Body of Christ, we clearly have a responsibility towards one another, as indicated by Paul in Ephesians 6:18 (see above quote).

I want to be obedient and I also want to encourage others to obey God in this regard. Now if you are already faithfully praying for all saints, then that’s wonderful. Continue your good work. I’d consider it a real honour, if you would also join in with this initiative.

However, if you are a born-again believer and this is not the case for you (i.e. you have neglected your prayer life), then whoever you are, wherever you are and at whatever time you choose, will you commit to praying regularly for other saints, as directed by Paul?

I believe there is no distance in the realm of the spirit and so I open this invitation to anyone who’d like to join their pleas to God, with mine. Will you pray with me? Will you offer God your earnest supplications alongside me and others?

I’ll endeavour once per week to bring the focus and a sample prayer. You can use this to pray verbatim, or adapt it, or even (here’s a blog challenge), construct your own and link to this post. Please note, you do not have to be a blogger to participate.

Now please don’t be alarmed or concerned at the thought of committing yourself. Jesus himself said “the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak”. You can make your commitment publicly (via the comment box below) or you can do so privately in your heart. You can commit for a week at a time, a month, 6 months, or a year. You can renew your commitment as and when you like. It is entirely up to you. I will not be holding anyone to account. Your decision to participate will be between you and God, unless you choose to share what you are doing.

If you are new to praying regularly, so that you don’t feel overwhelmed, I encourage you to take this step one day at a time, or one week at a time, whatever feels comfortable for you. The aim is to increase our current prayer lives, or to establish a regular prayer habit if you don’t already have one.

Potential prayer warriors and interns, welcome aboard. Let’s build a praying community together. Ready? Steady? Go!

Please don’t forget to put on your spiritual armour before entering the battlefield!

 

This Week’s Prayer Focus:

Let’s begin with ourselves and ask God to increase our desire to pray and establish us in a lifestyle of prayer. And let’s ask him to do likewise for the saints represented amongst our blog followers and visitors.

 

Dear Father God,

I want to thank you for the privilege of being able to come into your holy presence and make my requests directly to you. I want to thank you for your promise to hear my prayers. It’s my heart’s desire to obey your Word, which requires us to be watchful with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.

Father God, on behalf of myself and on behalf of my online brothers and sisters in Christ, who follow or visit this blog, I ask that you stir up within each of us a heart that is committed to obeying your command in Ephesians 6:18. I ask that you help us to establish a consistent, dynamic and fervent prayer life that is effective and avails much.

I ask this in Jesus’ name and thank you for granting my request. Amen.

© Carol Hind

 

ACTION:

Have you been encouraged to step up your prayer life? Would you like to become a part of the WoW! prayer community? Please let me know in the comment box below and don’t hesitate to share this post/invitation with your social media contacts.

 

CREDIT: The above CC0 Image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

Posted in Blog posts

My Passion Fatigue

 

I’ve not written in my writing journal since 1stJuly.

I’ve not worked on my project since 30th June.

I’ve not been actively writing on my two blogs.

I’ve been lackadaisical for 15 days – possibly longer!

Even today, I didn’t feel like doing anything. Didn’t feel like pursuing my passion. Didn’t feel like writing.

At the back of my mind, I’ve known I should push past this feeling and just get on and do. I know when I put my mind to it that inertia flees and the interest returns. Even now as I write, I sense the spark of enthusiasm igniting. And, strange though it may sound, even my fingers feel exhilarated, as they move across the keyboard. I’m back – just like that!

So what kept me away?

Self-sabotage!

At least that’s part of the story.

The other part is that the Enemy is at work. I know he is. I know he does not want me to succeed. He does not want me to fulfil my potential. He wants another of God’s protégés to go to their grave with their gifts and abilities, dreams and vision still sheathed, undeveloped, unexpressed and unused.

And yet, even though I’m aware of this, I give in to uncool feelings. I give in to my I-don’t-give-a-damn inertia of the moment and allow it to take me into extended periods of self-sanctioned slothfulness, or complacent inactivity. And whilst I’m doing this, I hear a little voice saying “I don’t care” and I listen to that voice and silently endorse its rebellious attitude.

But now, as I write, I realise that deep down I do care. I realise that voice was not me at all, or if it was me, then it was the voice of the old Carol, the non-productive Carol, the I-do-things-when-I-feel-like-Carol-and-right-now-I-don’t-feel-like!

I know when I behave this way that later I’ll be remorseful. Later I’ll beat myself up for all the time I’ve wantonly squandered, watching NCIS, or watching some other person who has fulfilled their dream, whether it’s purchasing a house in the country or abroad, or cooking their way to celebrity fame, or some writer whose script has been made into a film or TV programme. I know it but yet I give in to the voice and call of apathy.

And during this time, I surf. I stalk the sites of other writers and bloggers. Successful writers and bloggers. I read. I admire. And I feel jealous. I read. I admire. And I hope to one day experience similar success. One day!

But that day has not arrived yet.

I have no one to blame. No one to point the finger at, as the reason for my sudden stagnation. No one but me, myself and I!

I can’t even blame those who stir my anger, who orchestrate scenarios designed to humiliate, whose antics provoke me to sit and stew over the way I’m being treated, or grieve about my loss of self-esteem. I can’t blame those whose actions or words I’ve allowed to distract me from my goals and my determination and my vows of self-discipline; whose targeted tactics I’ve allowed to sap my motivation. I can’t even really say: “the devil made me do it!”

Because in reality I am more mature than that – aren’t I?

I know better than to give in to that listless, why-bother? mode – don’t I?

I know I should gird up the loins of my mind and let the negative thoughts go, let the offending persons go, whom the Enemy uses following key moments of achievement, sustained productivity, or exuberant success, to knock me off my man-made pedestal.

I know I should let them go from my thoughts, let them go from my desire for retribution, let them go from the un-Christ-like deliberations entertained within my heart. I know I should do so, and do so quickly, graciously, mercifully, the way God does for me, but to do so feels all wrong to my hurting heart, my wounded pride, my stomped-upon ego, my self-righteous sense of justice.

And that’s the issue.

The “me”. The “my”. The “myself”. The interminable preoccupation with “I”.

It’s an issue because God’s Word says:

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

(Galatians 2:20 NKJV)

Christ decided that I was worth the cost of giving up his reputation, his equality and standing with God, so that he could fulfil his Father’s will and die for me, so I may experience Zoe life (the God-type of life), so I may experience reconciliation with God, so I may experience the stupendous, supernatural benefits of salvation.

Without Christ’s death, none of this would have been possible. And without Christ choosing to lay down his life and humbly submit to his Father’s will, there would have been no glorious resurrection.

Christ was mocked. He was rejected, he was falsely accused, even betrayed. But he found a way to rise above his circumstances, and fulfil his calling. Despite the misunderstandings. Despite the mud-slinging. Despite the malicious intent of people around him. Despite the Machiavellian manoeuvres of his arch-enemy.

This same Christ lives in me. This same resurrection power is available to me.

And so I have a choice. I can listen to the Enemy’s lies and suggestions and give in to the fleshly dictates of my heart, or I can do what I need to do—add works to my faith, add obedience to my knowledge, add self-discipline to my intentions and, having done so, emerge from the plots of pernicious folk, from the schemes and snares of Satan, from the inadequacies of Carol, as a purpose-driven believer, as a triumphant dream-achiever, as a victorious overcomer.

I can choose to be a victor.

By God’s grace I can, and by God’s grace I will!

Today, I choose to silence that rebellious voice. I choose to lay down my fleshly inclinations. I choose to rise up and resume my place as a victorious overcomer.

 

Prayer:

Lord, I choose to decrease and allow you to increase in my life. Father-God, let not my selfish will be done but your perfect will. Kingdom of God come, be manifested in my circumstances. Will of God be done, in and through my life, today, tomorrow and always!

In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

 

*****       *****       *****

Credit: CC0 image courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

Today I pray for you…

Hello dear visiting friends,

Nowadays, I believe that the most precious thing someone could offer me is their prayer. So today when I came across this beautiful, heartfelt prayer, I not only wanted to share it with you but pray it over you.

Whoever you are, wherever you may be, know that this is God’s heart for you and your loved ones.

Please take the time to thank Jacqueline, who penned these words.

———————–💖 💖 💖 💖 💖 💖 ———————–

a cooking pot and twisted tales

Praying woman

Today I pray for you..
I wish that you will find peace and healing as you hurt in any way.

Today I pray for you..
I pray that you will find strength to hold on,
And abundant Grace to see you through.

Today I pray for you..
I pray for a consistent hedge of protection,
around you and yours, especially in these confusing times.

Today I pray for you..
I pray that you experience mercy, where it is needed

Today I pray for you..
I pray that you will find succor,
Even from the most unexpected channels.

Today I pray for you..
I pray that your heart and mind,
May be generous in your dealings with mankind.

Today I pray for you..
I pray that your faith and hope remains undiminished,
Even when all seems lost,
Just a sliver of faith and hope will suffice.

Today I pray for you..

View original post 43 more words

Posted in Blog posts

​Developing A Lifestyle Of Prayer

Dear WoW readers,
When Jesus walked on this earth he said men ought always to pray. I know there are people who struggle with the concept of prayer, or find the practice of consistent prayer difficult.

The following is an excellent post I read recently, which I hope will encourage, inspire and motivate you.

Life On Purpose

Luke 18:1
And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;


Pray Always

Prayer is a daily activity.

It is like breathing, it should always be “ON”.

When you stop breathing you die.

So it is in the spiritual, when you stop praying you die slowly.


2Sa 11:1 — 2Sa 11:3
And it came to pass, after the year was expired, at the time when kings go forth to battle, that David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel; and they destroyed the children of Ammon, and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried still at Jerusalem.

And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king’s house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to…

View original post 565 more words

Posted in Blog posts

Cake and Compliments

 

Yesterday, I spent a wonderful afternoon with one of my sisters, who had spoiled and pampered me with a Virgin experience birthday gift.

We enjoyed a lovely champagne tea in the glamorous surroundings of a luxurious 5-star hotel and whilst we spent this precious “sister-time” together, she complimented me on how I looked and expressed appreciation for the way I’d taken care of our dear mother. As I thanked her, she made no bones about the fact that she felt I’d deserved her generous gift.

Whilst chatting, my dear sister revealed she had been reading my blogs. She was full of praise and admiration and her words were like music to my praise-starved soul. In fact some of the things she said were as if God himself were speaking to me and encouraging me.

My sister’s praise and compliments coincided with that of further positive and affirming comments received privately from someone whom I’ve come to view as a blogger friend (as opposed to a fellow-blogger).

These two experiences that came from least expected quarters, that came uninitiated, showed me how important it is to encourage one another.

The world revels in putting the boot in, pulling others down, operating out of envy. I’m sorry to say that the Body of Christ can be guilty of the same thing. Most of us are guilty of back-biting, criticising and judging others. And some are even guilty of belittling or snubbing fellow-believers. The Kingdom of God operates on another (higher) level. Are you occupying that higher ground? Are you an encourager?

The Word of God tells us that we are to encourage one another while it is still “today” (see Hebrews 3:13). And who amongst us does not desire appreciation… does not need encouragement?

May I challenge you dear reader? Find someone today and encourage them with your appreciation and sincere compliments (not false flattery!). Make it a habit to encourage others if not daily, then regularly. Your words just might motivate someone who sees themselves as a victim today, to shrug off their chains of captivity and stride forward as a victor tomorrow.

If you are a blogger, why not encourage another fellow-blogger? It’s nice to leave likes, but put yourself out—make the effort, make someone’s day and encourage them by leaving a meaningful comment. And don’t just visit your friends and favourite bloggers, Search out someone new, or check out one of your unknown followers.

Dear reader, whilst out trudging the highways of cyberspace sowing your seeds of love, have a blessed day!

*****       *****       *****

 

Has this post inspired you? Has it motivated you to act? Share your response in the comment box below. I’d love to hear from you.

 

CREDIT: the above CC0 image comes courtesy of Alexandr Kurilchik at Pixabay.com

Posted in Blog posts

Ditch Oppressive Opinions!

 

Dear precious woman of God,

  • Don’t remain a victim of past failures or hurts.
  • Don’t let the negative lens through which others see you influence how you see yourself.
  • Don’t let the negative words that others speak over, or about you, be the words that you say over, or to yourself.

Listen to what one man of God advises:

Your self-esteem must be based on God’s opinion, not someone else’s opinion or even your opinion. Your self-esteem is to be based on what God thinks. And God thinks you are fantastic!

Dr Charles Stanley – In Touch (April 2001)

 

So let me ask you dear woman of God – whose opinion will you choose to believe?

Ditch those negative beliefs and oppressive opinions.

Choose to be a victor!

 

CREDIT: CC0 Image courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

Posted in Prayer Gems

Prayer Gem 11

Are you rooted and grounded in God’s Word?

 

The only currency God trades in is faith and ‘faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God’ (Romans 10:17 KJV).

As you immerse yourself in Scripture, faith takes root and begins to grow. And faith is what makes your prayers effective.

(Bob & Debby Gass – UCB Word for Today)

 

***     ***     ***

 

Self-Scrutiny:

Are you spending quality time in God’s Word?

Are you allowing the word of Christ to dwell in you richly? (Colossians 3:16)

 

Prayer warriors and interns, be sure to put on God’s protective armour each day!

 

Women of Warfare readers – may God’s hand of divine protection rest upon you and your loved ones throughout this week.

 

Posted in Blog posts

An Open Letter on Fathers’ Day

Lady Cee

7 Salvation Street

Pilgrim’s Peak

Jehovah-Shalom Province

***** ——————————————————-*****

 

To:      The God of all the Earth

 

Sunday 18 June 2017

Dear Father God,

I Love You.

There have been many times when I’ve told you how I feel about you. I’ve told you during my private devotional times, during public praise and worship sessions at church meetings, during my day when my thoughts run across you.

I love, love, love you—with all my heart, mind and soul.

If I am honest, I don’t think I’m at the point where I can say that I love you more than life itself but I do desire, hope and trust that the measure and quality of my love for you will increase more and more, will deepen and widen as time goes by.

Because dear Father God, you deserve all the love in the world, all the love in the universe. You are worthy of all love and adoration and I want to love you the way you deserve—totally, utterly and without distraction.

May I tell you why I love you dear Father God?

I know you know anyway because you are omniscient (love that word!). But I want to tell you anyhow. I want to spell it out in black and white for all the world to see. I want the world to know what a great God you are, what a wonderful, merciful, loving, gracious and faithful father you are.

I want anyone who reads this, who does not have such a relationship with you, to be curious, to covet the same for themselves, to even call out to you, asking that you reveal yourself to them and become their loving spiritual father.

I want this because I know there can be no greater association that anyone could possibly have in their life. I want this because I know that I know, that I know, there can be no more beneficial, life-enhancing and wholesome relationship that anyone could hope to have. I want this because you offer your love, your salvation package, as a free gift to anyone who desires it. And this free, generous gift is an absolute treasure.

And so my dear Father God, on this day, Fathers’ Day, a day to appreciate human fathers, it is only fitting that I acknowledge you and celebrate you and tell you how much you mean to me.

Where do I start?

First, let me thank you for your foresight in devising your plan of salvation. Let me thank you for not leaving me in the clutches of the Enemy but sending your Son, your precious, holy, only-begotten Son, to come down to Earth and lay down his life for me, so that I can be reconciled to you, so that I can experience and enjoy abundant life, soul peace and supernatural blessings. Thank you Father God!

I want to thank you Father God, for your precious, extravagant, everlasting, unconditional love and the assurance that this quality of love which you have for me, means you will always love me no matter how much I might fail, or fall short of your standards.

Dear Father God, I’m grateful that your love never changes, never diminishes and will never, ever be withdrawn from me.

Father God, as the years have passed and I’ve experienced the conditional love and even the rejection of others around me, let me tell you that the awesome depth, irrevocable quality and sincerity of your stupendous love has been thrown into sharp and stark contrast, when compared to the fickle love, or hatred of others.

For your unchanging, unconditional love, I most heartily thank you Father God.

I want to thank you for the future you have planned and prepared for me. Like all loving parents, you have provided the resources for me to succeed in life – all I have to do is ask, all I have to do is trust! And, unlike human parents, your resources can never and will never run dry, will never lose their value, or effectiveness, or impact.

What a wonderful God you are! What a wonderful privilege you have given to me. What supreme confidence you have placed in me. Amazing love! An amazing father!

Father God, thank you, thank you, thank you for divinely protecting me over these years. Even when I look back over my life to before I acknowledged Christ as my personal Saviour, to before I’d invited him to become the Lord and Master of my life, you had your hand of divine protection over and upon me.

I am humbled. I am astounded. I am utterly grateful. Thank you Father God!

My dear, precious heavenly father, I could go on and on about your goodness, about your attributes, about your marvellous interventions within my life but I won’t weary my readers.

Suffice it to say that I choose to acknowledge and celebrate you on this special day. Suffice it to say that I desire to honour you dear Father God, not only with my lips but also with my lifestyle. Suffice it to say that I adore you Father God, with all my heart.

Happy Fathers’ Day!

Yours truly,

 

Carol xx

(Daughter of the Living God)

 

PICTURE CREDIT: CC0 Image courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

Posted in Blog posts

Make That Call!

 

 

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

(Hebrews 4:16 KJV)

 

Are you familiar with the TV programme: Who wants to be a millionaire?

In order to reach the 1 million prize-money target, contestants have three life-lines they are able to use at any time – ask the audience, 50/50 (where 2 of the incorrect answers are removed), or phone a friend.

The friend has been pre-selected by the contestant and is usually chosen for their knowledge, for their capacity to help the individuals when they are stuck for an answer.

The friend, who is contacted live during the show, now has the burden of expectation on his or her shoulders—the expectation of the contestant who called; the expectation of the presenter who wants the drama of the situation to bring value-added appeal to the show; who naturally wants the friend to succeed, so contestants can proceed to the higher paying questions. Added to all this, is the expectation of the audience rooting for the contestant.

Sometimes that friend may come up trumps but at other times, the person selected turns out to be the wrong choice, for they are completely unable to assist!

Do you need help?

Are you in need of:

  • Courage, to face your day?
  • Deliverance from a sticky situation?
  • Enablement to obey God’s Word?
  • Guidance to know what to do?
  • Wisdom in order to make a decision?

Well, God is your friend – call on him!

Call him today. He will not let you down. The Bible is full of scriptures supporting this fact but here’s one for starters:

When I called, you answered me; you made me bold and stout-hearted. (Psalm 138:3 NIV)

 

In the day when I called, You answered me; and You strengthened me with strength (might and inflexibility to temptation) in my inner self. (Psalm 138:3 AB)

 

Now listen to what your Father-God has promised:

It shall come to pass

That before they call, I will

answer;

And while they are still speaking,

I will hear.

(Isaiah 65:24 NKJ)

 

Beloved child of God, victorious overcomer, dear women of warfare, may I counsel you today?

Make that call!

 

SELF SCRUTINY:

Who is your first port of call when you are in trouble or need advice?

 

Posted in Blog posts

Watch and Pray!

 

 

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men should do nothing.” Edmund Burke

 

My previous post, Don Your Armour, reminded us all of Paul’s words in Ephesians 6:10-18, where he encourages us to put on the whole armour of God.

God’s armour comprises not only the six elements of protective armoury and offensive weapons but also the requirement that we watch and persevere in prayer (see Ephesians 6:18).

Jesus himself, warned that we are to ‘watch and pray’ – Matthew 26:41.

So what should we be watchful about?

  1. Watch our hearts and attitudes. Proverbs 4:23 tells us we are to guard our hearts because it is from this central area (our inner being), that the current of our lives flow.
  2. Watch so that we do not enter into temptation—the temptation to be apathetic, complacent, slothful. The temptation to complain, or give up on our stance of faith. The temptation to walk in disobedience or pride. The temptation to belittle others, gossip or judge.
  3. Watch over the spiritual climate of your nation. Pray for your leaders, for those who occupy roles of significant responsibility. Pray for the liberty of Christians to live lives that are conducive to the moral absolutes of our faith.
  4. Watch over members of the body of Christ—those in your fellowship, those whom you interact with in your day-to-day life, those bearing the name of Jesus in your nation, not forgetting those who are suffering in far-off lands.
  5. Watch over the current affairs issue that tugs at your heart (e.g. brutality of dictators, persecuted Christians, the heinous crimes of sexual predators and religious extremists).
  6. Watch over our loved ones. Be diligent to ask for God’s protection over them as they go to school or work, as they travel to and fro, as they engage with individuals, who may or may not mean them harm.
  7. Watch over the happenings in Israel. Pray for that nation’s peace. Pray for the members of Christ’s body in that land. Pray for peaceful co-existence between believers in fellowships comprising both Jews and Arabs.

Why watch and pray?

Because, as Edmund Burke is attributed as saying (see above quote), the only thing we need to do for evil to prevail, is to simply do nothing!

Are you feeling helpless, even hopeless, about the injustices, mounting depravity and evils of this world?

Call on Jesus. Petition Jehovah. Summon the Holy Spirit.

We serve a God who is able to intervene, able to transform, able to thwart the spirits of wickedness that are at work in this earth.

Do you believe? If so, are you adding works to your faith? Are you praying?

Jesus asked: ‘. . . when the Son of Man comes, will he really find faith on the earth’ (Luke 18:8).

Well, what is your response?

More to the point, where will Jesus find you? Fighting in the field of faith, or despairing in the dungeons of doubt?

Children of the Living God, spirit-filled believers, Women of Warfare, come – let us do our part. Let us watch and pray!

*****       ******        ******

 

PICTURE CREDIT: the above CC0 Image comes courtesy of Jay Clarke at Pixabay.com

Posted in Blog posts

Don Your Armour!

 

If you know your Bible and are familiar with teaching on prayer and intercession, then I’m sure you will have come across Paul’s direction to the body of Christ in Ephesians 6:10-18.

You will know that as members of the body of Christ, we are encouraged to put on the whole armour of God.

How do we do this?

Pretty much like everything else we have to do when it comes to the supernatural things of God’s kingdom. We do so by faith and through confession (speaking God’s Word).

How did you get saved? You spoke (confession), when you invited Christ into your life and asked him to become your Lord and Saviour.

You believed (faith) that he would hear you and respond.

Whether immediately, or eventually, you experienced the reality. You received an inward witness. You knew that you were saved. You knew that you were changed. You knew that by some marvellous and mystical act, the Spirit of Christ had taken up residence within you.

And in a similar way, that’s how you put on your spiritual armour.

Put it on daily. Put it on before you go out into the fray of daily living. Put it on before you enter the battlefield of prayer. Put it on through confession. Put it on in faith.

If you’d like help in doing this, here’s a prayer you may use.

Victorious overcomers, prayer warriors and prayer interns – have a blessed weekend!

 

Do you agree with this post? Let me know your response in the comment box below.

 

Posted in Prayer Gems

Prayer Gem 10

 

Prayer is our spirit making live contact with God’s Spirit

 

Have you send Jesus your kneemail today?

 

Behind some of the greatest spiritual awakenings in history was an unseen, unsung force known as ‘intercessors’. Many of the victories we celebrate in the open are first won by such people in the secret place of prayer.

(From: UCB Word For Today – 11 December 2016 – written by Bob & Debby Gass)

 

*Free postal copies of UCB Word For Today (UK and Republic of Ireland only) are available from: FREEPOST RLTX-ABUL-GRAR, United Christian Broadcasters, Westport Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST6 4JF

For the email version please sign up at: http://www.ucb.co.uk/word-for-today.html

 

 

Warriors and prayer-interns, be sure to put on God’s protective armour before going into battle! Here’s a prayer you can use.

 

CREDIT: the above CC0 image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

Turn Your “Should” Burdens Into Blessings


 

Hello dear Women of Warfare! readers.

As you know this blog focuses on encouraging myself and others to walk as victorious overcomers. Its aim is to see women released from the shackles of any circumstances in their lives that seeks to keep them imprisoned as victims.

If you are anything like me, you can feel overwhelmed by the things we believe, or have been told that we should do or be. We should be the perfect wife, mother, lover, cook, whatever! We should be able to juggle impossible schedules. We should be this… We should do that… And the endless list continues.

Women of Warfare, if you’ve allowed yourself to become a victim of false guilt, other people’s demands, your own lofty goals, or frantic schedules, I hope the following post will encourage you.

Please read, reflect and respond.

 

Posted in Praise Prayer Worship

Heartfelt Praise

PRAYER PRAISE & WORSHIP WEDNESDAY

 

Praise

PRAISE the Lord!

Praise the Lord, O my soul!

While I live I will praise the Lord;

I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.

(Psalm 146:1-2 NKJ)

 

Whoever offers praise glorifies Me;

And to him who orders his conduct aright

I will show the salvation of God.

(Psalm 50:23 NKJ)

 

Prayer

Father God,

Right now we come into your awesome presence to honour you – not just with our lips but with our hearts and souls, with our entire being.

We come to offer you the praise and worship that you deserve because you are so worthy. We love you Father God. We want to love you more. We want to know you more. We want to understand your ways better because we want to glorify you, both in and through our lives.

Lord Jesus, thank you for your example of honouring our Father whilst you walked on this earth. As your disciples we want to do likewise, so we thank you for your ongoing prayers and intercession on our behalf. We realise this will not happen by our own efforts or willpower but by your Holy Spirit.

Holy Spirit, we call upon you as our Helper. Thank you for your anointing within us that teaches us. Teach us how to honour Father God, not only with our lips but also with our lifestyle.

Thank you Father God for hearing our prayer and granting our request. Amen.

 

(References: Matthew 15:8; Revelation 4:11; Romans 8:34; Hebrews 7:24; Zechariah 4:6; John 14:16, 26; 1 John 5:14)

 

 Worship

 

Women of Warfare followers and visitors, I pray that the Lord will draw you into a deeper experience of Him.  I pray your hearts will overflow with inexpressible joy as you spend time in his presence and take time to express your love for him. Share those secret desires of your heart in prayer, knowing he listens and knowing he loves you and desires to fellowship with you.

Have a victorious week!

PS: If you are reading this and you do not have a relationship with God but would like to, may I invite you to accept Jesus as your Saviour? To do so, you simply have to repeat the following prayer and God will do the rest (please don’t hesitate – your eternal destiny depends on whether or not you take this next step!).

 

A Prayer for Salvation and a Relationship with God

Father God,

I want to have a relationship with you. I come to you today in the name of your Son, Jesus. Thank you for making it possible for me to be reconciled with you. I realise I am in need of rescuing from the penalty of sin. I believe Jesus died for me and I accept He is the only way through which I can escape eternal punishment. I therefore repent of my sins and ask your forgiveness.  Jesus, I invite you into my life as my Saviour and my Lord. Amen.

 

Dear reader, if you prayed the above prayer, congratulations and welcome to the Family of God!

The following links will help you take your next steps in your new life and provide the guidance you need. I’d also suggest that you talk to a Christian friend and find a church to attend and receive support. You may also find the following post at my other blog site enlightening (Paradise Lost or Paradise Regained?), as this explains why the step you have just taken is vital for safeguarding your eternal destiny.

If you accepted this invitation to commit your life into God’s care and prayed the above prayer, please share the good news in the comment box below (don’t be shy!) 🙂

WoW! followers and visitors – no need to feel left out! If you’ve been encouraged, inspired or uplifted by this post, don’t hesitate to share your comments below. I look forward to hearing from you.

 


 

 

Posted in Blog posts

Be Vigilant – Use Your Satan-Repellent!

 

Every amateur gardener experiences the frustration of planting their garden only to later find holes chomped into the leaves of their prize plants. It looks unsightly and it’s annoying!

There are many ways of getting rid of the pesky slugs and snails but the quickest and to my mind, the most effective, is to use slug repellents.

Many a time I’ve looked out of my bedroom window only to espy one of these creatures moving with focused determination towards a patio plant, to feast on its lush green leaves.

Quick as a flash I dive down the stairs, rush into the kitchen, grab the salt and make my way into the garden. It’s amazing how quickly these snails can move when the motivation of a nice succulent plant propels them!

Now, I know they’re God’s creatures but I didn’t invite them into my garden and if these creatures do decide to gate-crash, they should at least have the decency to see and not touch—certainly don’t have the temerity to chomp and chew. How dare you! My garden is not a free, eat-as-much-as-you-want salad bar!

So, you can understand why I have no compunction about pouring salt upon the cheeky blighters and watching them (with no small sense of satisfaction mixed with a tinge of disgust) turn into a yucky patch of slime. No compunction at all!

Why am I telling you this?

Because dear women of warfare, as victorious overcomers, we will often encounter situations in life that seek to chomp and chew its way into the succulent leaves of our spiritual growth. Satan, our Enemy, is the equivalent of these garden pests.

Any chance he gets, he will attack our minds, and try to destroy the fresh green foliage from all those positive Word-seeds sown into our hearts. He wants us to remain his victims.

So, don’t be passive. Don’t be complacent. Use your Satan-repellent. Use the Word of God!

 

Posted in Blog posts

Blog Event: Lady Cee’s 4Ws and 1H

Hello Women of Warfare followers. Do you like blog challenges? Do you like meeting new bloggers? If so, why not take part in this challenge?

I look forward to learning a bit more about the person behind the blog and hope you will join in.

Purpose-driven achiever

LADY CEE’S 4Ws & 1H Blog Challenge

(Challenge open Monday 15 May 2017 to Tueday 30 May 2017)

***     ***     ***

Welcome to my debut blog event. I hope you will come and support me by joining in with this challenge.

The Challenge:

I have based my challenge on a journalism reporting technique known as the 5Ws and 1H. If you are not familiar with this and I have piqued your interest you can check out the following link: https://www.thoughtco.com/journalists-questions-5-ws-and-h-1691205

You will note that I’ve adapted this slightly for my challenge, hence the 4Ws (Who, What, Where, Why) and 1H (How).

How to take part:

Answer the following questions:

  1. Who would you like to be for a day?
  2. What flower or plant do you think represents your personality?
  3. Where would you go on holiday if money were no object?
  4. Why did you become a blogger?
  5. How do you measure personal success and…

View original post 512 more words

Posted in Five Minute Friday

Not on our terms!

FIVE MINUTE FRIDAY

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

 

 

 

Five Minute Friday Prompt: SHOULD

John the Baptist languishes in prison.

He sends some of his followers to Jesus with a question. Are you the coming one, or do we look for another?

Why did John the Baptist ask this question? After all he had baptised Jesus. He had witnessed the Holy Spirit in the shape of a dove hovering over his cousin. He had heard the voice of God saying: this is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased. He had even testified that this same Jesus would baptise with fire and that he (John) was unworthy of even loosening the latch on Christ’s shoes.

So what happened?

Adversity happened. Disappointment and disillusionment happened.

John was of the impression that this Jesus, the one whom he’d faithfully served, testified about and prepared the way of his coming, the one whom he’d confirmed was the Son of God, should have been doing something about his situation. He felt Jesus should have been making moves to rescue him from prison.

[End of 5mins]

After all Jesus must have heard about what had happened to him. After all, this is why Jesus had come to the earth wasn’t it? To deliver the captives. To set them free. So why hasn’t he? Why didn’t he muster his power and spirit him away, out of jail? Or why didn’t he come before Herod, overwhelm him with shame and conviction regarding his sin, use his powers of persuasion and demand his release? Why? Did he not love him? Did he not care?

And so as he sits in the darkness of his dungeon, John begins to entertain doubts. John listens to the taunts and lies of the Enemy. John begins to hold a pity-party. And as a result, he sends his followers off to ask a question, which barely veils an accusation.

Should we look for another Messiah? Should we look for another Saviour? Should we look for another Deliverer?

The question implies that Jesus had been weighed in the balance of John’s expectations and found wanting. The question implies that if Jesus is who he says he is, if Jesus is who John had believed him to be, then here was an opportunity to demonstrate his authority and power, here was an opportunity to show his compassion and mercy. So why hadn’t he?

And isn’t that how we are, as children of God, as followers of Christ? Full of faith, solid in conviction—until adversity strikes! Then come the doubts, the questions, the crisis of faith. We sit within the prison of our circumstances, within the confinement of our fears and wonder why God doesn’t rescue us, why Jesus doesn’t zap the situation with his power and make the injustice, the intolerable pain, the ugliness go away.

How did Jesus answer?

“Go and tell John the things which you hear and see:

The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them…” (Matthew 11:4-5)

 

John’s direct question was answered. Jesus provides incontrovertible evidence that he is the one, the expected Messiah. However, Jesus also answered John’s indirect query or accusation. His response delivers a sting in the tail. And blessed is he who is not offended because of me! (exclamation mine).

What can you and I learn from this?

  1. Don’t doubt in the darkness of trial, what you once believed in the light of revelation truth and experience
  2. Our relationship with God does not preclude us from injustice or tribulation and Christ does not answer to our every beck and call.
  3. We should not allow offence to develop in our heart when our expectations of God are disappointed.

In the face of bewilderment, discouragement or fear, how should we behave? With confidence that God is with us, despite what the devil implies, or our circumstances suggest!

We are told:

Fear not, for I am with you;

Be not dismayed, for I am your God.

I will strengthen you,

Yes, I will help you,

I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. (Isaiah 41:10)

 

And so we have a choice – trust and believe, or question and accuse.

 

***       ***       ***       ***       ***

 

Posted in Blog posts

Push A Different Button!

Those of you who have read my posts for some time know that every now and again I share something from an excellent devotional resource that I use, the UCB Word for Today, written by Bob & Debby Gass.

I cannot recommend this highly enough. Even if you don’t get on with daily devotional books (for a long time I didn’t!), you can read it as a straight forward book, or dip into it from time to time (as I started out doing). Before you know it, I’m sure you’ll become a fan (as I have!).

The following is an extract from last month, which I feel led to share with you all.

 

***     ***     ***

 

 

MIND-SETS ARE patterns whereby your mind automatically operates a certain way. That means you can set yourself up for misery by reacting to the same people and circumstances in the same way, and expecting different results.

Maybe you are saying:

‘After all these years I thought he’d change…’

‘No matter how hard I try, my family doesn’t appreciate me…’

‘How come I’m the only one who makes an effort to stay in touch?’

 

It’s easy to blame your problems on others.

‘Look what he’s doing.’

‘Look how long I’ve waited.’

‘Why doesn’t she call?’

 

We think the answer lies in getting the other person to do what we want, but that kind of thinking is self-defeating; it gives control to others.

Your happiness isn’t determined by other people, even though you’ve convinced yourself it is.

An experienced counsellor writes:

‘If you don’t like the same results… try pushing a different button. Look at your relationships. Is there a situation that’s going downhill despite your best efforts? Are you waiting for something to change, instead of doing something different? Stop pushing the same button, and ask God for clarity to see the situation honestly and to act with wisdom and responsibility.’

 

You’re not a victim of circumstances; you don’t have to stay stuck or keep going in circles.

Paul says, ‘Put off… your former conduct… and be renewed in the spirit of your mind.’

The word for you today is: you can change!

 

***     ***     ***

 

WoW followers and visitors, I hope you find the above useful, even timely. If you enjoyed reading and know someone who could benefit from this post please do not hesitate to share it. And why not drop me a line and tell me what you thought about it in the comment box below? I’d really appreciate your response.

*Free postal copies of The UCB Word For Today (UK and Republic of Ireland only) are available from: FREEPOST RLTX-ABUL-GRAR, United Christian Broadcasters, Westport Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST6 4JF

For the email version please go to: http://www.ucb.co.uk/word-for-today.html

 

The above CC0 images used are courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

Posted in Prayer Gems

Prayer Gem 9

 

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.

Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.

1 Peter 5:8-9

 

In my Bible (Spirit Filled Life Bible – NKJV), the above passage has the following explanatory footnote below:

Resist: The active imperative indicates an assertive stance against the Adversary’s operations. Because of the Devil’s aggressive hostility, Christians must be spiritually alert, not only to withstand his attacks (employing the armor described in Eph. 6:10-18), but in prayer and spiritual warfare opposing him.

 

***     ***     ***

Question:

  • Are you asserting the authority Christ has given you?
  • Are you opposing the advances of the Enemy against you and your loved ones?

Spiritual warriors and prayer-interns, be sure to put on God’s protective armour before doing so!

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

I Appreciate You!


 

To my dear followers, friends and visitors of Women of Warfare! – I truly appreciate you!

 

‘Thank you’ dear readers and followers

For granting your precious time

To read, to like, or to comment,

In response to my prose, or my rhyme.

 

‘Thank you’ dear precious visitors

For choosing my place to stop by

For making my moments as inspirational blogger

A wonderful joy-induced high.

 

My sincere thanks to those who linger,

Over posts shared from a heart of love

‘Thank you’ to those who consume, digest and ponder

Who support me with words which affirm and cause wonder,

And spurs praise to my Father above!

 

© Carol Hind – April 2017

 

 

T H A N K    Y O U !

 

 

Posted in Five Minute Friday

The Caged Bird’s Song

 

FIVE MINUTE FRIDAY

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

Dear readers before I continue, I have to make a confession. Although this post began life as a 5min exercise, it has since been amended and refined!

 

 *****       *****       *****

 

 

CC0 Image courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

Five Minute Friday Prompt: SING

 I don’t know why but Maya Angelou’s book, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, came to mind, as soon as I saw this week’s prompt.

In the context of this blog’s purpose (which is to encourage women and to motivate us to walk as victorious overcomers), I see Christian woman who are habitually defeated or depressed, as akin to caged birds.

Most birds have the potential to sing joyously with abandon, to soar, to explore and enjoy their freedom but caged birds, in effect, have had their wings clipped.

Continuing with the above analogy, the cage (representing limiting beliefs, negative behaviour and Satan’s lies), both confines and defines.

Now of course the caged bird can sing but is its song true? Does it sing with the same harmony and sweetness as its counterparts that enjoy liberty?

Women of God, it is our choice whether any negative circumstance in which we may find ourselves, serves to imprison us. It is our responsibility to ensure that our Bible-based confession, or our testimony of faith becomes the spiritual song God hears, thus enabling him to liberate us.

Let us follow the example of the following writers, who confidently declared:

 

Behold God is my salvation,

I will trust and not be afraid;

For YAH, the Lord, is my

Strength and song;

He also has become my salvation.

(Isaiah 12:2 NKJV)

 

You are my hiding place;

You shall preserve me from trouble;

You shall surround me with

Songs of deliverance.

(Psalm 32:7 NKJV)

 

So, let me ask you dear Women of Warfare, how do you sing? As a caged bird, or as a potential bird of paradise… a beautiful bird of liberty?

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

“A Thousand Worries”

Dear friends, followers and visitors I hope you all had a good Easter break.

I know from my own experiences of life, from my conversations with loved ones and from reports of world events that peace is a sorely-needed requirement in our lives.

Yet the peace we need is not the ‘peace’ of this world but the heart-and-soul peace that comes only from God. It is a peace that surpasses our natural understanding. It is a peace that protects us from being overwhelmed by anxieties, fears and worries.

However, we need to abide in that place of peace in order for it to remain effective. Failure to do so is like making travel or home insurance payments then worrying about the consequences of events that may or may not happen, acting as if you have no confidence in the provisions of the policy, or worse, acting as if there is no policy in place.

The following re-blogged post depicts what often happens when we pray for peace but fail to leave the matter in God’s capable hands. May I encourage us all this morning to share our concerns and anxieties with our Father-God, to thank him for HIS answers and resolutions and whilst waiting, to rest in his peace.

 

TBD {To be determined}

For every drop of trust, I hold a thousand worries
I have a thousand wants, a thousand needs
I bring to You
while making my own plans to get them done.
Thinking the peace comes from the thing received, achieved,
rather than You,
my flimsy patience begs me hasten,
encouraging my DIY plans to control my own fate.
But fate proves a heavy load
for my fragile hands, which now,
I see, hold a thousand worries once more.

So I come again, Lord,
making known my request.
You’re not just my backup plan;
You’re my peace.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

– Philippians 4:6-7

View original post

Posted in Blog posts

Pick Up Your Cross!

 

What is your cross?

It is any situation that calls for you to die to the dictates, desires and demands of your flesh… that requires you to take the route of suffering knowing that death to your flesh will enable you to minister God’s life-giving spirit to someone else.

The “flesh” represents not just your body but also your appetites, inclinations, impulses, negative and contrary responses.

Now the cross we are expected to carry, the path we are expected to tread will be unique to each one of us.

In my case, crucifying my flesh requires me to remain silent in the face of lies, false accusations, scorn and ridicule. It demands that I walk humbly through the gates of self-denial and submit to the punishing nails of humiliation as my name, reputation and self-esteem are nailed mercilessly to my cross. It also demands that I bear this cross of perpetual shame with the right attitude, knowing that my Father God knows my thoughts and sees my heart.

A bitter pill to swallow?

Yes. Absolutely!

Now whilst studying the Bible, or listening to stirring sermons, God’s Word may at that time rejoice my heart. However, when later required to walk that word out, when faced with the reality of practicing God’s kingdom principles in the context of hatred, rejection or sabotage, the sweet experience of hearing that word or receiving that revelation, can become bitter.

Bitter because I’m now required to chew, swallow and digest an unpalatable portion. Bitter because God’s word is no longer a neat theoretical discourse filed away in my mind but a distressing practical experience to be suffered, to be endured.

I wonder how many of us choose instead to spit out the offending morsel. Love your enemies? Nope! Don’t fancy that! Rejoice during persecution? Sorry – no way! Turn the other cheek? You’re kidding me – right?

I wish I was but I’m not. I wish carrying my cross was as simple as fastening a piece of jewellery around my neck. But it’s not. Carrying one’s cross is not easy.

Yet carry it I must, since this is what Jesus did for me (and for you) from the time he was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane to the time he was cruelly impaled upon that cross at Golgotha.

Whether you believe it or not, whether you care or not, the truth is Jesus willingly suffered so that we can be reconciled to God, so that we can be free from the clutches and influence of Satan and, so we can be delivered from spiritual death – the devastating penalty of SIN.

 

For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully.

For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God.

For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow his steps (1 Peter 2:19-21 NKJV).

 

So are you prepared to follow Jesus’ example? Are you willing to obey Christ’s command?

…If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me (Matthew 16:24 NKJV)

And he who does not take his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me (Matthew 10:38)

 

The choice is yours whether you eat God’s manna of obedience, or consume the meat of self-indulgence.

As his disciples, Christ expects us to take up our cross daily and follow him. Have you picked up your cross, or are you avoiding and disobeying his command?

Without the cross there can be no crucifying of your flesh (please note I am speaking metaphorically here). Without crucifying of self, there can be no experience of Christ’s resurrection life and power, and therefore no partaking of his glory.

 

…we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with him, that we may also be glorified together. (Romans 8:16-17 NKJV)

 

Dear readers, be aware that between the stages of grace and glory lies a road of personal pain and self-sacrifice. Those who choose to skip this route will not be seen as overcomers in God’s eyes. Those who refuse to walk this narrow pathway will not earn the victor’s crown.

Spiritual warriors, prayer interns, brothers and sisters in Christ, your cross will be specific to the path and purpose God has ordained for you. Have you decided to emulate Jesus? Then pick up your cross!

 

Wishing all followers and visitors a happy Easter!

 

PHOTO CREDIT: CC0 image courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

It’s A Love Relationship!

 

He brought me to the banqueting house,

And his banner over me was love.

Song of Solomon 2:4 (NKJV)

 

…Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love;

Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.

Jeremiah 31:3 (NKJV)

 

Do you struggle to pray?

Let me ask you another question.

Do you struggle to love your significant other half, or someone close to you, whom you cherish?

Prayer is just that. It is a means of communicating with your Father God. The one who loved and continues to love you unconditionally. Every moment. Every day. Without exception! The one who has proved his love for you by sending his only Son, Jesus, to die for you.

Now, just as communication keeps your relationship going with your cherished loved ones, so communication keeps your relationship with God alive and meaningful. So treat prayer as a loving relationship between you and the Lord. And if you think of prayer along those lines then it should not seem quite so much of a struggle.

Brother Lawrence, author of The Practice of the Presence of God, aimed to make the love of God a priority in his life. He was known for maintaining a consistent level of communication with his Heavenly Father, throughout his day.

When you are in love with someone you want to spend as much time as possible with that person. You have a deep desire to know them and to know all about them. You are not shy or reluctant to express your feelings. You are thankful for their presence in your life, for the meaning they have brought to your life. And, if you are wise, if you cherish that relationship, you will express to them your heartfelt gratitude and appreciation. Not just once in a blue moon, but often.

Another feature of your love relationship is that you are not afraid to ask for what you desire, or feel you need. You ask. Whether you get it or not does not diminish your love for that person, or undermine your relationship with this individual.

As it is in the natural, so it is in the spiritual. So apply the same principles to your relationship with God. Recognise that prayer is a two-way communication. A sharing of hearts. A revealing of hopes and dreams, of hurts and disappointments. A desire to please the other. A commitment. A shared intimacy.

Can you relate?

If so, then you can most certainly pray. You can pray faithfully and fervently, passionately and purposefully. Because prayer is a love relationship with the one who loves you more than you can ever fathom.

Prayer is love in action.

*****        *****        *****

CREDITS: All images are courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

Posted in Blog posts

Too Busy? That’s A Poor Excuse!

Let me ask you a question. Are you too busy to pray?

I read a post recently at JOYFull Inspirations, which brought to mind a book I’d read some time ago by Bill Hybels, TOO BUSY NOT to PRAY. Hybels is the senior pastor of a large church in Illinois, USA.

The following is an extract from this book:

Prayerless people cut themselves off from God’s prevailing power, and the frequent result is the familiar feeling of being overwhelmed, over-run, beaten down, pushed around, defeated. Surprising numbers of people are willing to settle for lives like that. Don’t be one of them. Nobody has to live like that. Prayer is the key to unlocking God’s prevailing power in your life.

Dear WoW follower or visitor, if you feel life’s too busy for you to regularly set time aside and pray, then I have a challenging question to put to you – Is God a priority in your life? Be honest and search your heart.

We make time for the things that matter to us. Relationships. Parenting. Work. Business. Blogging. Even serving in the church! So, all things considered, do you really have a bona fide excuse?

Let me remind you of Susanna Wesley, mother of 19 children. You may recall that in one of my posts last year (We Salute You!), I shared how:

The difficulties and busyness of Susanna’s life, meant that her only means of escape to the prayer closet was to throw her apron over her head, warning her large brood of children that whenever they observed her in this state, she was praying and therefore not to be disturbed. Given this wonderful example from a woman who bore 19 children, dare we say of ourselves, that we do not have enough time to pray?

And, to give you another modern-day example, the post at JOYFull inspirations which caught my attention, was written by Letticia, a busy mum with 6 children.

Dear readers, let me encourage you to draw closer to God, to spend time in His presence.

I wish you an abundantly blessed and victorious week.

***     ***     ***

For those of you who might be interested in purchasing this book visit: https://www.amazon.com/Too-Busy-Pray-Bill-Hybels/dp/0830834753 OR

https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=Bill+hybels+too+busy+not+to+pray

 

CREDIT: The above CC0 image is courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

Posted in Prayer Gems

Prayer Gem 8

 

 

Prayer creates a personal change in your life. Nothing you can do will benefit you more than prayer. Through prayer, you create an account balance in your favour in God’s spiritual bank. Through prayer, you will benefit spiritually, mentally and physically.

Paul Y. Cho

 

The Lord is near to all who call upon Him,

To all who call upon Him in truth.

Psalm 145:18

 

 

Have you sent God your knee-mail today?

 

 

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

The Beauty of Prayerful Submission

 

The following is a beautiful post I came across today, which I’d like to share with you all.

If you (as Christ’s disciples did), feel your prayers lack oomph, or if you wish to increase your prayer prowess, do as this blogger did – ask!

God will certainly hear your prayer and grant your request. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you – that’s why he was sent – to come alongside believers and help. So ask! Ask today. Don’t delay!

💖 💖 💖

 

I have been asking Jesus to show me how to pray. I am often thinking that it’s in relation to how I pray for others, but there’s so much I need to learn. How to approach him, how to wait for him, what I need, what he needs to show me. This was where he […]

via empty vessel, living sacrifice  — Threads of a Remnant

Posted in Blog posts

Love’s Sacrificial Mindset

 

 

Image from Sophie Janotta (Pixabay.com)

Hello Folks,

I’m engaging in a bit of self-promotion here.

Having written my first guest post, I’d really love it if you’d be so kind as to lend me your support.

If you have the time and inclination, details are as follows:

Venue: StylishlyInspired

 

Hope you’ll enjoy reading and if you do, please don’t hesitate to let me know your thoughts.

Thanks in anticipation!

Carol

“…If you love what you are doing, you will be successful” – Albert Schweitzer

—————————————————————————-

 

Posted in Blog posts

My God is Able!

CC0 Image – courtesy of John Hain (Pixabay.com)

 

Fear not, for I am with you;

Be not dismayed, for I am your God.

I will strengthen you,

Yes, I will help you,

I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

(Isaiah 41:10 NKJV)

 

It was 4.00am on a work day morning.

I lay wide awake in bed. Fretting.

My concern related to a new occurrence of an age-old problem, which looked as if it would never, ever be resolved. I could see no way out. No way around, or over this problem.

And God didn’t seem to be doing anything about it! Despite my repeated requests. Despite my firm stand of faith.

Fear began to voice its opinion.

What’s the point of carrying on with this project? – they’ll only undermine you anyway! No one’s really interested in what you have to say, so why bother?

Then self-pity put in her 10 cents worth.

Opposition is too strong, too much. Face it – they’re winning! And you know they are determined you won’t succeed. Is it worth putting yourself through the agro (aggravation)?

Then unexpectedly, up came bubbling within my spirit a chorus I used to sing years ago. It went like this:

God is able, more than able

To accomplish what concerns me today

God is able, more than able

To handle anything that comes my way.

God is able, more than able

To do much more than I could ever dream

God is able, more than able

To make me what he wants me to be.

The Holy Spirit had stepped in with his calm, cool, soothing voice of comfort. Isn’t it beautiful when that happens?

Immediately, I felt encouraged. God is with me, so who can successfully stand (and permanently maintain that stance of opposition), against me? After all, as is so clearly shown in the Bible, to stand against the people of God, is to stand against the God of his people and since I am his child then a stand against me is a stand against Him. Anyone foolish enough to try and oppose God is bound to come a cropper—eventually!

And since God is confirming that he is with me, I can cast ALL my concerns on him. I can leave him to sort everything out. Deal with what needs to be dealt with. Thwart those who need to be thwarted. I just need to be patient and wait on his timing.

My times (my past, present and future days) are in God’s hands, under his control. He has not shut me up into a ‘no way out’ zone with the Enemy, or with those whom Satan uses to do his dirty work (Psalm 31:8).

Thank you Father God!

WoW followers and visitors, don’t be, or don’t remain a victim of negative circumstances. Don’t entertain those thoughts that are contrary to God’s Word and will for your life.

When the Enemy sows those thoughts of defeat and discouragement (and believe me he will), you have a choice:

  • agree with him   OR
  • resist him!

To successfully resist Satan and his tactics within and against your life, engage the help of your Comforter and Helper. Ask the Holy Spirit to lift up a standard against the flood of contrary thoughts sent to swamp your mind (Isaiah 59:19b). Ask him to help you gird your mind with the truth of God’s Word (and ask Him to give you some scriptures to memorise and stand upon during times of attack). Then when Satan throws those thought bombs, you’ll be prepared and you will not become a casualty.

 

(PS: I was not able to find out who wrote the above chorus)

 

Dear followers and visitors, have a blessed and victorious week.

Posted in Praise Prayer Worship

The Scourge of Rejection

The following is a long-playing instrumental music (don’t be put off!). I am not expecting you to listen to the entire album but you may enjoy listening to it playing softly in the background, whilst you read this post. And then when you have finished reading, please don’t rush away. I’d certainly encourage you to sit and listen for just a little while longer. Allow the Lord to minister to your soul and spirit.

 

 

Dear fellow-bloggers, friends and visitors – forgive me!

A few mornings ago, as I was worshipping the Lord, the phrase Praise, Prayer & Worship Wednesday suddenly entered my head. I then realised that I’d missed last month’s feature post. I am not sure whether anyone noticed. If you did, please accept my apologies!

I cannot believe how fast the month has flown. So fast, in fact, I hadn’t even realised that the last Wednesday of February had come and gone.

Now, I obviously cannot roll back the time. So for the benefit of anyone who did notice and perhaps missed this feature and, because I truly want to honour God on this blog, I’d like to focus today’s post on doing just that. I want to praise and glorify my Father God.

 

***     ***     ***

 

thankyouheartpda 

I have come across many in my life who for various reasons have rejected me and systematically seek to rob me of my dignity. They do not welcome me into their presence.

And there are those who, whenever I happen to be in their midst, never miss an opportunity to show me their contempt, to subject me to mockery, ridicule and scorn. Yet who are they? Are they not fellow human beings? Are they not fallible flesh and blood individuals, just as I am?

However, for some reason, these people have elevated themselves above me in their thinking, in their behaviour toward me. They have lifted up themselves in their own estimation and chosen to exclude me from their ‘acceptance’ club. They continually seek to hurt me. And they often succeed.

But I thank them. Sincerely!

Why?

Because the weight and constancy of their unkind treatment has opened my eyes to the expanse of God’s continual grace, lovingkindness and mercy.

Yes. My wonderful Father God, who is God indeed, who is exalted above the heavens (you can’t get higher than that!), finds it in his generous, loving heart to include me, to make room for me in his life, to even want to share that life (eternal life, abundant life) with me.

I know from personal experience that when I enter into that atmosphere of sincere praise and worship, when I enter into God’s awesome presence, when my spirit connects with my Father God’s—I sense the holiness, the loveliness, the majesty of his awesome being. And when I reflect on the privilege that this wonderful being has granted, in inviting unwanted and unworthy me into His throne-room, I am overcome and overwhelmed.

Charles Green, a contributing author to the Spirit Filled Life Bible (NKJV), says:

Man was created to live and breathe in an atmosphere of praise-filled worship to his Creator.

My first thought as I read this was of a fish taken out of water, taken out of the ideal environment in which it was created to survive and thrive. To fail to offer God the fruit of our lips, and our free-will sacrifices of praise and thanksgiving, is to be like a fish out of water.  It is removing ourselves from the atmosphere and environment in which we were created to survive. And guess what? The Enemy of our souls, is always seeking to discourage us from praise, prayer and worship, because he knows that therein lies our spiritual strength.

Satan, my enemy, (and yours!) has sought to surround me with pack-bullies. He has worked hard at promoting an atmosphere of contempt around me. But I refuse to be hemmed in by thoughts of intimidation, fear and rejection. I refuse to be defined by the words and actions and attitudes of those whom the devil deploys to come against me, who walk in the counsel of the ungodly, choose to stand in the path of sinners and sit in the seat of the scornful (Psalm 1:1).

I refuse.

And so Father God, today I want to celebrate your goodness. I want to praise you:

 

I will extol You, my God, O King;

And I will bless Your name forever and ever.

Every day I will bless You,

And I will praise Your name forever and ever.

(Psalm 145:1-2)

 

And I offer you my heartfelt prayer:

Father God,

Thank you for your unconditional love. Thank you for your acceptance. Thank you for that wonderful sense of peace that your awesome presence exudes. Help me to bask in that holy presence, to allow your peace to soothe my soul.

I worship you today in spirit and in truth. Accept my humble sacrifice. May my offerings of praise, prayer and thanksgiving, rise like sweet incense to your throne. Amen.

 

Have you been hurt – by a colleague, church member, wife, husband, close relative or friend? Then use that hurt to propel you into the arms of Jesus. He is able to relate (remember Judas!). He is able (and willing) to comfort, strengthen and restore. Just ask him!

Why not accept today’s invitation to visit with your Father God?

Image from: M. Maggs - Pixabay.com
Image from: M. Maggs – Pixabay.com

It is an open invitation. Spend time saturating yourself in his presence. Spend time cultivating an atmosphere of praise, prayer and worship around you, so that your Father God can heal and restore you. So that he can lavish his love upon you – the way you deserve. So that you can become the person, the victorious overcomer, God created you to be.

Fellow Christian bloggers and visitors may I encourage you to make God’s presence in your life a priority?

Have a blessed weekend.

♥♥♥

Posted in Prayer Gems

Prayer Gem 7

prayerreenablack-pixabay-1308663_960_720

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs and don’t forget to thank him for the answers. If you do this you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:6-7 (The Living Bible)

 

 

Prayer is the portal that brings the power of heaven down to earth. It is kryptonite to the enemy and all his ploys against you.

(Priscilla Shirer)

 

Have you sent God your knee-mail today?

 

Posted in Blog posts

For God’s Sake, Let’s Grow Up!

 

Do you remember as a child how anxious you were to grow up?

Perhaps one of your parents, or a school teacher, used to measure your height against a wall at regular intervals and you took delight in the fact that you had grown taller since last month or last year.

Perhaps you watched one of your parents perform a task and you wanted to help because it made you feel “grown up”. Or perhaps when family and friends asked you your age, you added a half-year, or a three-quarters-of-a-year to your actual age because it made you sound older (I’m 6 and ¾ years old).

May I ask whether that same eagerness to grow, to mature, has transferred over to your spiritual life?

Are you as keen to imitate your heavenly father and Jesus, your older brother?

Do you take stock of your habitual actions and attitudes in light of God’s Word, to see whether they reflect those of a mature man or woman of God?

And if you do, are you satisfied with your conclusion?

There are several instances in the Bible where we are encouraged to grow and mature in our walk with the Lord.

Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby (1 Peter 2:1-2 NKJV).

 

 …till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect [i.e. mature] man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ (Ephesians 4:13).

So, as a child of God have you considered asking the Holy Spirit what area of your personality, or walk with the Lord you need to focus on this year, in order to mature as a believer, in order to walk as a victorious overcomer?

Do you have an accountability partner whom you can trust and with whom you can pray?

As a prayer warrior, or a prayer intern, have you set goals?

It could be as small as praying 5mins each day for a lost soul (whether family member, or friend), or as involved as engaging in diligent intercession for a nation notorious for persecuting Christians.

If having considered the above questions you feel there is a distinct lack in your life with regards to spiritual growth and maturity, between the time you were first born-again into God’s kingdom and where you are now, are you willing to do something about it?

tape-measurelynn-greyling-pixabay-348965_960_720Let me challenge you dear child of God to make 2017 a year of tangible personal growth, a year of perceptible spiritual maturity.

All God requires is a willing heart and obedience. So make him a proud parent! After all, given his amazingly generous sacrifice of love and, after all he has done for me and for you, he surely deserves to be – don’t you think?

Now remember, God doesn’t expect us to achieve all this through our own efforts.

‘Not by might nor by power, [i.e. personal ability] but by My Spirit,’ says the Lord of hosts. (Zechariah 4:6b NKJV)

So don’t hesitate to invite the Holy Spirit’s assistance—that’s why Jesus sent him to come alongside us in the first place!

And don’t forget to keep a record of your progress (perhaps through journaling), so you have some means of checking how much you’ve grown and so you have the evidence for which to give glory, thanks and praise to God.

Blogger friends and visitors, I wish you an abundantly blessed and victorious week and, I pray you will experience a discernible measure of growth in your spiritual life this year!

***     ***     ***

What’s your response to this post? Please leave a comment in the box below and if you enjoyed reading, or felt challenged, don’t hesitate to show your appreciation by leaving a ‘like’. Thank you.

The above CC0 images are from Pixabay.com

Posted in Prayer Gems

Prayer Gem 6

ReadingBible (Unsplash)-945422_960_720

 

The only currency God trades in is faith, and ‘faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God’ (Romans 10:17 KJV). As you immerse yourself in Scripture, faith takes root and begins to grow. And faith is what makes your prayers effective.

(Bob and Debbie Gass – 2016-17 UCB Word For Today).

 

 

Have you sent God your knee-mail today?

 

 

Posted in Blog posts

Dear Valentine – I Love You

CCO Image - courtesy of Pixabay.com
CCO Image – courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

O Lord Jesus, I love you

And today I just want to say

That you have captured my heart

In an unbelievable way.

 

O Lord Jesus, I need you

And today, I express my love

With a heart so full of gratitude

For coming to Earth from above.

 

Dear Lord Jesus, I thank you

For surrounding me with your grace

For granting me every required resource

To overcome all that I face.

 

My precious Lord Jesus, I love you

And look forward to when I can see

Your beauty, your brightness,

Those nail-scarred hands

Which were marred to set me free!

 

© Carol Hind – 11 February 2017

 

Posted in Blog posts

Your Country Needs You!

CC0 Image - Pixabay.com
CC0 Image – Pixabay.com

 

Lot chose to live in Sodom and Gomorrah but the inhabitants’ ungodly behaviour vexed his righteous soul. However, if it were not for Abraham’s appeal to God, Lot may well have been destroyed alongside those degenerate souls (see Genesis 18:16-33).

Fast forward to today’s world and I think many of you readers will agree that it has reached a similar state of lawlessness and depravity.

The Bible declares that “…the whole world lieth in darkness” or “under the sway of the wicked one” (1 John 5:19). Certainly, as Christians and prayer warriors, the reprehensible acts of so-called Church leaders who abuse their power and position, the various international crises, the troubling escalation of social ills, can seem utterly overwhelming and unresolvable.

But hallelujah! We serve a God who is able (and willing) to heal our lands and deliver the ungodly from the grip of the Enemy (2 Chronicles 7:14). He is merely looking for someone to step into the breach, to seek his assistance, to plead for his mercy, to make a demand upon his miraculous might.

So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand in the gap before me on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found no one. Ezekiel 22:30 (NKJV).

Will you be that person? Will you allow God to transform your concerns into compassion? Will you don your spiritual armour today and pray?

Dear WoW! follower and visitor, your country needs you! Not as a critic. Not as a self-appointed judge. But as a committed soldier in Christ’s army, as a stalwart warrior. Please don’t hesitate to enrol and take your place on the battlefield. Your prayers can make a difference!

Wishing you all a blessed and victorious week!

Posted in Five Minute Friday

That Deadly Desire to Control

Five Minute Friday

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

 

policeman-pixabay23796_960_720

 

Five Minute Friday Prompt: CONTROL

It’s sad really. Diabolical in fact!

The way some people want to control you. Control your behaviour. Control your clothing and the way you dress. Control how you treat others. Control your destiny.

And do they want to control you for your own good? No siree! They want to control you for their ulterior motives. Are they seeking to control you because they love you and have your best interests at heart? No way! They care only about themselves.

Habitual manipulators seek to control you for many reasons. Because they want you to fear them. Because they wish to alienate you. Because they secretly, or openly despise you. Because they seek to hurt you. Because they have such a low self-esteem that the only way they can feel good about themselves, or assert themselves, is to undermine you, to control you.

And so they do, or think they do. But they have left one important factor out of the equation. One very BIG factor. God. God Almighty! The one who created heaven and earth. The one who crafted mankind and breathed life into their souls. They have forgotten that it is God’s breath in their nostrils. God, who upholds this world with the word of his power. This God, this God of gods, is the one in ultimate control.

END OF 5MINS

Now, isn’t it ironic that the one who actually has supreme power, control of all that happens both in heaven and on earth, is not so precious about it? Isn’t it staggering to realise that Jesus, equal member of the triune Godhead, decided he was not going to cling to control, to the authority, majesty and power he once held in heaven, in order that he might come down to earth, identify with the sin and frailties of humankind and lay down his glorious, sinless life, so that whosoever wills, may grasp the opportunity to become born-again in a new kingdom, with a new status, subject to new rules?

How many despots do you know or have heard of, who willingly relinquish power? How many dictators do you know, who graciously abdicate their place on the coveted seat of authority and power?

And why is it that if you do not agree with said dictator’s views then bombs, or the threat of decapitation, or torture, is their only response? Terrorism, not love, is their byword, their fear-inducing catchphrase.

Every day we hear, read about and see, heart-breaking scenarios of man’s beastly attempt to control others, almost as a matter of course. It is not uncommon to discover living amongst us in our nation, within our neighbourhoods, or even in our own families, a victim of a wife/husband beater, a survivor of human rights atrocities, or a reviled asylum seeker. These people are subject to perpetual ill-treatment, to constant violation. Many are helpless prey, caught in the snare of Satan’s demonic control.

I’m positive that practically every single one of us reading this post would strenuously condemn the attitudes and actions of abusers, bigots, despots or terrorists. And yet….

Yet, I wonder whether we are sometimes guilty of similar sins (albeit on a lower level). Do we use our influence in a way that seeks to control or marginalise others—at work, at church, at home? Do we boycott those we don’t like or disagree with? Do we draw others into our circles of reproach? Do we woo family and friends to critique parties and gossip sessions and send folks to Coventry, in order to hammer home our message?—obey, or you’ll pay!

If I’m honest, it’s easy to nit-pick, or magnify the faults and failings of others, particularly those who have offended me, or blackballed me in some way, or who don’t live according to my standards—and not realise that whilst condemning, criticising or judging others, those same imperfections which I self-righteously seek to highlight, exist in some measure in my own life.

As Jesus so humorously put it, dare we pass judgment on, or seek to address the misdeeds of others when there is a massive log in our eye, blinding us to our own faults?

And as Paul shrewdly observes:

Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things. (Romans 2:1 NKJV)

Does that mean we should never speak out against wrong-doing, or seek to encourage or correct others? No! That’s not what I’m saying. But, as followers of Christ, and as Christian bloggers seeking to influence others, we should take note of Paul’s following query:

You, therefore, who teach another, do you not teach yourself? (Romans 2:21 NKJV).

 His question certainly provides food for thought—and perhaps occasion for examining our own lives—don’t you think?

Women of Warfare followers and visitors, in our bid to influence, let us be wary of creating cliques and clubs, rather than communities. Let’s be careful not to marginalise or control others. And above all, let’s share what we have to say, or feel we need to say, in a spirit of true humility.

Have a blessed and victorious week!

 

PS: The linkup for this prompt has now closed.

 

Posted in Prayer Gems

Prayer Gem – 5

woman-praying-waldryano-pixabay1935186_960_720

 

How to Secure God’s Mercies and Protection

 

In the morning prayer opens the treasures of God’s mercies and blessings, and in the evening it shuts us up under His protection and safeguard.

Vern McLellan

 

 God awaits you in His throne-room!

 

Posted in Blog posts

Psst! Have You Heard…?

Carol, you are a sweet positive minded soul that I’ve been fortunate to connect with in this place. I would like to thank you for all your support, for your beautiful posts infused with wisdom and love. It’s been a pleasure relating with you. A Bit About Me My name is Carol and I am […]

via Getting To Know Beautiful Carol — a cooking pot and twisted tales  (before you click – please see intro below – Thank you).

INTRO:

For those of you who would like to have a personal insight into me the individual, the person behind the blogger, I hope you will visit Jacqueline’s site to read this interview.

If you have not already come across her name on your cyber-travels, I would be most surprised, as nearly everywhere I visit, her Gravatar image is already there amongst the likes, or the comments.  As I’m always telling her, Jacqueline is one of the hardest working bloggers I know (as a visit to her site will soon reveal – there are sooo many posts!), and her desire to collaborate with and support other bloggers, is just cause for admiration.

Posted in Blog posts

Promises, Prayer, Preparation

prayerreenablack-pixabay-1308663_960_720

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.

Philippians 4:6 (NKJV)

 

 The following devotional is taken from UCB Word for today (May-July 2016), written by Bob and Debbie Gass.

***     ***     ***

 

The famous evangelist R. A. Torrey said two of the greatest secrets to effective prayer lay in:

  1. Studying the Word of God and finding His will as revealed in the promises.
  2. Taking these promises and spreading them out before God in prayer, with the unwavering expectation that He will do what He said.

Don’t tolerate prayerlessness in your life. Don’t allow the stress of so-called progress to dictate how much time you will sit at the feet of your Saviour. Crave those times. Schedule those times.

Grace L. Naessens puts it like this in her poem, The Difference.

I woke early one morning

And rushed right into the day

I had so much to accomplish

That I didn’t have time to pray.

 

Problems just tumbled about me

And heavier came each task

“Why doesn’t God help me?” I wondered

He answered, “You didn’t ask.”

 

I wanted to see joy and beauty

But the day toiled on, gray and bleak.

I wondered why God didn’t show me

He said, “But you didn’t seek.”

 

I tried to come into God’s presence

I used all my keys at the lock.

God gently and lovingly chided

“My child, you didn’t knock.”

 

I woke up early this morning

And paused before entering the day.

I had so much to accomplish

That I had to take time to pray.

 

If you are wise, you will stay ‘prayed up’ and prepared for the inevitable crises of life. It’s foolish to wait until trouble shows up at your doorstep to begin this essential spiritual discipline.

 

***     ***     ***

*Free postal copies of The UCB Word For Today (UK and Republic of Ireland only) are available from:

FREEPOST RLTX-ABUL-GRAR, United Christian Broadcasters, Westport Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST6 4JF

For the email version please sign up at: http://www.ucb.co.uk/word-for-today.html

 

CREDIT:  The above CC0 Image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

PS: It’s my birthday today and I’ve just discovered that I shared a birthday with R. A. Torrey!