Friday, March 27, 2009

A Franciscan Prayer...

I recently finished a book by Craig Groeschel entitled "IT: How Churches and ministries can get it, and keep it". A brilliant book that has challenged, inspired and has fuelled me to keep seeking God's heart passionately without excuse!

At the end of the book Craig prays a prayer for that goes like this:


"May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half truths, and superficial relationships, so that you may live deep within your heart.

May God bless you with anger at injustice, oppression, and the exploitation of people, so that you may work for justice, freedom and peace.

May God bless you with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, and starvation, so that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain into joy.

And may God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in this world, so that you can do what others claim cannot be done."


WOW...awesome and challenging. I pray that this would be the cry of our hearts – that we won't become complacent in our walk with the KING OF KINGS, that we would be HIS hands and HIS feet in a world that is broken. And that we would unashamedly and at all costs stand and believe that God has a plan for ALL people everywhere and that "ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE – THROUGH CHRIST WHO GIVES US STRENGHT"



Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Psalm 101: A prayer of one whose life is falling to pieces, and who lets God know just how bad it is

I've been reading the Psalms lately and have stumbled upon Psalm 101. An awesome theme for all Christian – I know I can relate to this at the moment. I must add a disclaimer though – this is a work in progress.


Psalm 101 (Message)

1 My theme song is God's love and justice, and I'm singing it right to you, GOD.

2 I'm finding my way down the road of right living, but how long before you show up? I'm doing the very best I can, and I'm doing it at home, where it counts.

3 I refuse to take a second look at corrupting people and degrading things. I reject made-in-Canaan gods, stay clear of contamination.

4 The crooked in heart keep their distance; I refuse to shake hands with those who plan evil.

5 I put a gag on the gossip who bad-mouths his neighbour; I can't stand arrogance.


6 But I have my eye on salt-of-the-earth people--they're the ones I want working with me; Men and women on the straight and narrow--these are the ones I want at my side.

7 But no one who traffics in lies gets a job with me; I have no patience with liars. I've rounded up all the wicked like cattle and herded them right out of the country.

8 I purged GOD's city of all who make a business of evil. A prayer of one whose life is falling to pieces, and who lets God know just how bad it is.


Like David, we often go about life singing of God's love and Justice, we try and live right, but sometimes we feel like David as he writes: "but how long before you show up?" Life keeps throwing 'bog' at you – and we know that it is the spiritual battle – but when is the 'bog-throwing' gonna stop? When is God going to show up? We feel discouraged, we feel oppressed, attacked...relentlessly – and we ask: "Where is God?"

The Answer: Right by your side! Jesus says: "I will NEVER leave you nor forsake you". It's interesting that David speaks of WHOM you surround yourself with. As the Message translation (above) puts it "salt-of-the-earth people" – people who share the same heart after God and what HE wants to do. God speaks through these people to us to encourage us in our walk with him – to help us persevere and endure. You see, Christ wants us to live out our faith in the ordinary events of life – but by HIS strength (even when he appears to be silent) – the real question is: "Are you listening?" And are you listening to the RIGHT voices?


An author and pastor whose heart I love writes in one of his books that we need to listen to "Insiders who have an Outsider heart". What this means is that we need to surround ourselves with people who will sharpen us in our walk with Him, but those people need to have a heart of seeing Outsiders (those who are far from God) become Insiders – for God's glory. When we start surrounding ourselves with "salt-of-the-earth" people, it will help in a huge way in pursuing God's will (His Mission, His Purpose) amidst the uncertainty of life and the challenges we face. DISCLAIMER: NOTHING can substitute of our personal Intimacy with Christ.


I love how the Psalm ends: "A prayer of one whose life is falling to pieces, and who lets God know just how bad it is."


In essence our lives are falling to pieces, but the encouraging thing is that God is there and can be trusted through the tough times. He loves us so much that we can tell him how bad it is – and most "awesomely" is the fact that we can let go of the things that burden us and weigh us down and let God do what he wants to do. His will be done!