Tag Archive | pray

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 64 – The Secret Place

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 64

The Secret Place

Lord, what exactly to you mean by ‘the secret place’?

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My darling child, the secret place is simply the place you and I meet alone, away from crowds, noise, and distractions. The meeting place may be a room in your home, a secluded garden, a mountain top, or a jail cell. The ‘secret’ is you and I alone together. This may happen anywhere you are, anytime of the day or night. The secret place is a special place in your heart that you and I connect and communicate.

I have said, “When you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you” (Matthew 6:5-6).But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you” (Matthew 6:17-18). Prayer and fasting done in secret will be rewarded. Anything done in the secret place with Me will be My gift to you.

Go to the secret place when you pray. Go to the secret place to seek Me and find Me. Go to the secret place to hear My voice and know My thoughts. Go to the secret place to discern My will. Go to the secret place to acquire My wisdom and My strength. Go to the secret place to find My peace in the middle of chaos. Go to the secret place to experience My love and joy.

My desire is that you frequent the secret place at least daily; My preference is that you and I meet there throughout the day. I am always waiting for you in the secret place. Seek Me at all times; I am here. Believe it! You may find Me and hear Me speak to you any time you will make the time to listen; any time you will quiet your heart enough to hear My still, small voice.

Run to the secret place for a word of encouragement. Hide in the secret place and experience My protection. Walk with Me in the secret place; I will share My heart with you. Eat with Me in the secret place; I have a feast prepared for you. Let My Spirit refresh your soul in the secret place. It is no secret that I love you, and I desire to spend time alone with you, one-on-one, in secret. See you there soon!

Prayer:

Father, I am going in to the secret place right now to be with You, and You have been here waiting for me. It feels so good and so peaceful spending time here alone with You. Thank You for dwelling in my heart, so that I may meet with You any time of the day or night. It is such a gift to hear Your voice and discover Your thoughts. Please share more with me right now. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Abba Father, what do You want me to know about this secret place that You and I meet? What do You want me to know about our relationship? (Write every thought you have and word you hear.)

 

  • Jesus, my brother, is our relationship the same as my relationship with the Father? What do You want me to know and hear about the relationship You and I share? (Record all your thoughts, feelings, and ideas.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, thank You for dwelling in the secret place. Help me to make time to be there more regularly. You are always there waiting for me. What do you want me to know about our relationship and our meeting time? (Journal everything He makes known to you.)

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, thank You for sharing Your heart with me again today. It is so great knowing Your intimate thoughts, desires, and messages of love and encouragement to me. I am grateful that Jesus made the way for me to communicate with You, at all times, in all places. I carry You in my heart wherever I go. My desire is to remain in You and You in me. Come near to me now, my Friend. Let me know Your presence and feel Your love. I put my trust in You and receive the confidence that You are in control of all things. This brings me much peace and joy, no matter the circumstances I may be in. You are my Comforter, my Guide, my Protector an Provider. You are my Savior and Deliverer. You are my Rock and Refuge, my hiding place. Thank You for being my All-in-All; You are everything to me. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Psalm 139:13-17, 13For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mothers’ womb. 14I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well. 15My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. 16Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the day ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be. 17How precious to me are Your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them!

Matthew 6:5-6, 5“And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 6But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

Matthew 6:16-18, 16“When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 17But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 50 – The Will of God

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 50

The Will of God

Dear Lord, I want to live the best possible life You have for me. How do I know Your will? What are your plans for me? When do I need to check with You to make a decision? What direction should I take for this situation? Lord, please let me in on Your will for me.

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My child, do not live as unwise but as wise; do not be foolish, but understand what My will is for you (Ephesians 5:15-17). Approach My throne of grace with confidence, so that you may receive My mercy and find My grace to help you in your time of need (Hebrews 4:16). I want you to seek My will in all decisions, in every aspect of your life. I desire your obedience, and in order to obey, you must know My will. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what My will is—My good, pleasing and perfect will (Romans 12:2).

Renew your mind in My Word. One place you can discover My desired will for you is in the Bible. Read it, believe it, and follow it. Also, when you pray, the Holy Spirit will lead you to Scripture which will instruct you to follow the path I have marked out for you. The Spirit will guide you to the next step in the plans I have pre-determined for you, plans to prosper you, give you hope, and a future (Jeremiah 29:11). Seek Me any time, day or night, and I will let you in on My plans for you. You know My voice, listen and follow (John 10:27).

As long as you remain yielded to Me, and in communication with Me, I will guide you in My will and provide everything you need to accomplish it. Even Jesus, the Son of God, depended on Me and submit Himself to My will, even unto death on the cross. He did not face that alone. He prayed, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from Me; yet not My will, but yours be done.” My will for you is not always the easiest path, but I work all things together for the good of those who love Me and are called according to My purpose (Romans 8:28). Nothing is impossible for Me, and that means, nothing is impossible for you when you have faith in Me (Matthew 17:20).

I ask you to trust Me. I am in control. I established My throne in the heavens, and My sovereignty rules over all (Psalm 103:19). If you think you are in control of your own life, you are deceived. I am in control of all things. However, I do give you the free will to choose. But I know ahead of time, what your decision will be, and I work behind the scenes to use it for good. I will continue to work in your life through your circumstances, but it may not be My best for you, unless you seek Me first and walk in My will.

That doesn’t mean you won’t suffer the consequences of your poor decision gone wrong. A person reaps what he or she sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life (Galatians 6:7-8). Live by the Spirit, not the flesh. Walk in step with the Spirit (Galatians 5:25). He guides you along the right paths (Psalm 23:3).

I know the future, and it is most beneficial for you to seek Me for your next step in all situations. I give you guidance for every step of life. My plans for you are best. Submit yourself to My will, and you will prosper. When you make decisions of your own free will, without consulting Me, you may suffer the pain of your own making. Do not run ahead of Me. I act on behalf of those who wait on Me (Isaiah 64:4). Hope in Me; you will not be disappointed (Isaiah 49:23).

I know all things, while you have limited knowledge. Making decisions based on your emotions and earthly desires, may cause you to step out of My perfect will for you. Your life is but a mist, here for a little while and then gone; you do not know if you will see tomorrow (James 4:14). Walk in the favor of My will and lead the best possible life I have for you. I have come that you may have life, and have it to the full (John 10:10).

Prayer:

Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God; may Your good Spirit lead me on level ground (Psalm 143:10). Guide Me along the right paths (Psalm 23:3). Help me remember to seek You first, before I make my decisions. Lord, I delight in You; please give me the desires of my heart. Help me run with perseverance the race you have marked out for me, fixing my eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith (Hebrews 12:1-3). Lord, share the inner workings of Your heart and Your will with me now. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God:

  •  Lord, is anything in my life blocking my ears from hearing Your voice? Please show me way I have offended You, so that I may remove this roadblock. (Write all words and thoughts He gives you.)

 

  • Jesus, Your Word is a light to my path (Psalm 119:105). Please light the next step for me now. (Record whatever you hear from Him.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, please guide me in the way You would have me go. I commit my way to the Lord; I put my trust in Him. Show me how to live in step with You. (Journal all the thoughts He gives you.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Father God Almighty, I will take delight in You. I commit my way to You; I put my trust in you. Please make my righteous reward shine like the dawn (Psalm 37:3-7). I will be still and wait patiently for You. You know what is best for me. Lord, please show me Your plans, one step at a time. I desire to do Your will God (Psalm 40:8). Give me the forbearance to wait on You and trust in You to give me the full life You intended for me. I want to walk in step with Your Spirit. Guide me along the right paths (Psalm 23:3). In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Psalm 23:3, He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for His name’s sake.

Psalm 37:3-7, 3Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. 4Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart. 5Commit your way to the Lord; trust in Him and He will do this: 6He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun. 7Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.

Psalm 40:8, “I desire to do Your will, my God; Your law is within my heart.”

Psalm 103:19, The Lord has established His throne in the heavens, and His sovereignty rules over all.

Psalm 143:7-10, 7Answer me quickly, Lord; my spirit fails. Do not hide Your face from me or I will be like those who go down to the pit. 8Let the morning bring me word of Your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in You. Show me the way I should go, for to You I entrust my life. 9Rescue me from my enemies, Lord, for I hide myself in you. 10Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God; may Your good Spirit lead me on level ground.

Isaiah 49:23, “Those who hope in Me will not be disappointed.”

Isaiah 64:4, Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides You, who acts on behalf of those who wait for Him.

Jeremiah 29:11-14, 11“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12Then you will call on Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart. 14I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.”

Jeremiah 32:17, “Ah Lord God! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and by Your outstretched arm! Nothing is too difficult for You.”

Matthew 7:7-8, 7“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened to you. 8For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. ”

Matthew 7:21, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of My Father who is in heaven.”

Matthew 12:50, “For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.”

Matthew 17:19-20, Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there.’ And it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

Luke 22:39-42, 39Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and His disciples followed Him. 40On reaching the place, He said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.” 41He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed. 42“Father, if you are willing, take this cup from Me; yet not My will, but yours be done.”

John 6:37-40, 37“All those the Father give Me will come to Me, and whoever comes to Me I will never drive away. 38For I have come down from heaven not to do My will but to do the will of Him who sent Me. 39And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that I shall lose none of all those He has given Me, but raise them up at the last day. 40For My Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in Him shall have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day.”

John 10:10, “The thief comes only to seal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

John 10:27, “My sheep listen to My voice; I know them, and they follow me.”

Romans 8:28, And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.

Romans 12:2, Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good, pleasing and perfect will.

Galatians 5:24-25, 24Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.

Galatians 6:7-10, 7Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. 8Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. 9Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. 10Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

Ephesians 5:15-20, 15Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. 17Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. 18Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, 19speaking to one another with psalms, hymns and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, 20always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Philippians 2:13, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill His good purpose.

Colossians 3:23-25, 23Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. 25Anyone who does wrong will be repaid for their wrongs, and there is no favoritism.

1 Thessalonians 4:3-8, 3It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; 4that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that his holy and honorable, 5not in passionate lust like the pagans, who do not know God; 6and that in this matter no one should wrong or take advantage of a brother or sister. The Lord will punish all those who commit such sins, as we told you and warned you before. 7For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. 8Therefore, anyone who rejects this instruction does not reject a human being but God, the very God who gives you His Holy Spirit.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, 16Rejoice always, 17pray continually, 18give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Hebrews 4:16, Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

Hebrews 12:1-3, 1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

James 4:13-17, 13Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” 14Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and to this or that.” 16As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil. 17If anyone, then knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.

1 Peter 3:17, For it is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.

1 John 1:9, If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

1 John 5:14-15, 14This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15And if we know that He hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of Him.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 37 – Be Armed for Spiritual Battle

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 37 

Be Armed for Spiritual Battle

Lord, sometimes I can really relate to what Paul said in Romans 7:15, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.” Why do I continue to behave and respond in the flesh, when You have given me new life in the Spirit? What is this battle raging within me that keeps me from living the sanctified life You intended for me? Lord, I confess my sin and ask that You would help me fight this battle and win.

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

It is good for you to realize that you are involved in a form of daily spiritual battle between the flesh and the Spirit. Use the Holy Spirit’s power to annihilate the force of sin in your life. Sin has no control over you, unless you allow it to. You are no longer a slave to sin; but Jesus Christ has rescued you and delivered you from all evil (Romans 7:24-25). You are a new creation in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:17). You have the same power living in you that raised Jesus Christ from the dead (Ephesians 1:19-21). The Holy Spirit is your ally and defender. You may exercise His supernatural strength in all your encounters. I am your Warrior God; I help you fight your battles and win them!

Also understand that you live in a continual spiritual warfare of good vs. evil. Every morning, dress yourself for spiritual battle by putting on the full Armor of God, so that you will be able to stand your ground. Gird your waist with the belt of truth, claiming who you are in Christ; you are supernaturally empowered by the indwelling Holy Spirit. With the helmet of salvation, you put on the mind of Christ, giving you wisdom and discernment with regard to your enemy and his attacks. Secure the breastplate of righteousness in place to protect your heart and defend your birthright as a child of God. Hold up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Stand firm with your feet fitted with the sandals of the gospel of peace. Take up and carry the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God so you can fight against the enemy’s lies with the truth of Scripture and God’s promises. Pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. Always be alert and keep on praying for all God’s people (Ephesians 6:10-18).

Draw on the dynamic power of the Holy Spirit whenever you find yourself in a diabolical battle. Your enemy’s attacks may be subtle. Sometimes you do not even know you are in a fight until you have lost. Remain alert to the devil’s ways, knowing that he will first go after your weakest areas. Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms (Ephesians 6:12). When you are in a struggle against another human, consider the provocative nature of the evil one. Often times, he is your true opponent. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8). Do not fall prey to his devious schemes. Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power (Ephesians 6:10). Live as wise, not as unwise (Ephesians 5:15). Remember that Christ has already defeated Satan, sin, death and the grave. Do not give the devil more power than he is due. Christ has made him powerless. Claim your victory over evil and the evil one, by the shed blood of Jesus on the cross. You are victorious in Jesus Christ. Stand firm and win over evil. You are armed with power from on high to overcome all the power of the enemy (Luke 10;19).  

Prayer:

Dear Jesus, thank You for shedding Your blood on the cross and claiming Your victory over sin, death, and the grave. Thank You for providing me that same victory, as well as, power and authority over all evil and the evil one. I am so grateful that I do not stand alone to battle the forces of evil, but You stand at my side. You are my Warrior God, hiding me in the shadow of Your wings and protecting me from my enemies. Lord, thank You for providing me the Armor of God, so that I may stand firm in battle and remain standing. Thank You for the victory and for the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in me. Please help me be alert to the ways of the enemy and engage in battle with the weapons and authority You provide. Please speak to me now and share Your wisdom with me to better prepare me for anything the enemy throws my way.

Two-way Conversation with God:

  • Loving Father, please expose the broken places in my heart and show me my areas of weakness that the enemy will most certainly go after. (Record all thoughts that come to mind in this moment.)

 

  • Jesus, my Victor, please enlighten me to the truth about my vulnerabilities exposed above. Replace the lies of the enemy with Your truth. Tell me how to defend myself against the enemy attacks in these areas. (Write down all thoughts, ideas, and Scripture verses that come to mind right now.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, please help me be alert to Satan and his ways. Remind me that I struggle not with flesh and blood, but against the evil one. Empower me with the Word of God to fight these attacks. Please give me verses that will combat the enemy when he strikes my weak spots. (Journal all His words and verses He leads you to for this application.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Almighty Lord, thank You for sharing Your wisdom, words, power and protection with me as I fight these daily battles. Lord, I ask that You will daily empower me with Your wisdom and Your Word. Lord, help me always remain alert to the enemy’s ways and recognize each battle I engage in for what it truly is. I claim my victory in You. I claim all power and authority over evil and the evil one, in the name of Jesus Christ, and by His blood. Thank You, Lord. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Luke 10:18-19, 18He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.”

Romans 7:14-25, 14We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. 15I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. 21So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.

2 Corinthians 5:17, Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!

Ephesians 1:19-21, 19and His incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20He exerted when He raised Christ from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly realms, 21far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.

Ephesians 5:15-20, 15Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. 17Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. 18Do not become drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, 19speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, 20always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 6:10-18, 10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. 11Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, an after you have done everything to stand. 14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

1 Peter 5:8-11, 8Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. 10And the God of grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast. 11To Him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 32 – Pray Continually

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 32

Pray Continually

Lord, what does it mean to pray continually? Do I need to breathe a prayer all day long to You? How do I work this in to my busy life? What do You require of me and desire from me with regard to prayer?

 A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My darling child, continual conversational prayer is the main way I communicate with you through the Holy Spirit dwelling in you. I desire that you live your life, busy as it is, in an attitude of prayer, talking to Me and listening to Me throughout your day, every day. That means that as you go about your daily activities, make decisions, and plan for your future, you seek Me in prayer. As you practice this more, eventually it will become your first instinct to speak with Me in every situation, not only in trials and challenges.  

Consult with Me to gain the wisdom you need to make all your decisions, large and small. Ask Me for anything, grandiose or miniscule, and it will be yours when you believe you will have what you ask for (James 1:5-6). I want to be involved in every area of your life. I want you to depend on Me for your wisdom, your direction, and your strength.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to Me, and My peace, which transcends all understanding, will guard your heart and your mind in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7). I will calm your fears and give you the courage for every battle, the wisdom for every circumstance, the strength for every challenge.

You may be filled with joy always (1 Thessalonians 5:16), because of the confidence you have in knowing that I am God, I am in control, and I will provide for you in all situations. You may be free to give thanks in all situations for the same reason (1 Thessalonians 5:18). Prayers of gratitude and thanksgiving shall become a daily devotion for you as well. Tune in to the Spirit of God within you. Remain in step with Him. The fruit of the Spirit is joy (Galatians 5:22-23). Let others see My joy in you, even in the middle of the storms. Joy comes from the confidence you receive when you place your trust in Me through prayer.

It is possible that you can go about your daily routine maintaining an ongoing conversation with Me. Pay attention to the voice of My Holy Spirit inside you. He will direct your thoughts and prick your memory to remind you to seek Me and speak to Me often. You simply need to be more mindful of My continual presence. I am with you at all times. I hope to hear from you in all circumstances. I desire that you depend on Me for everything. Ask Me for anything in My name and I will do it (John 14:14).

Pray to Me about anything and everything. I hear all your cries, and I answer every one in My perfect way and timing. Whether it’s locating a lost set of keys or making the decision to buy a new home, I am here and ready to answer your pleas for recollection and wisdom. I am for you, not against you. I favor you, I do not disregard you. I am at your side, on your side in all situations. I love you, My child. Will you love Me with all your heart by seeking Me first, before you make your plans and decisions?

When you pray frequently, you sustain the intimate fellowship I desire. You will learn to trust Me more when you continually work on developing a more cherished connection with Me daily. You will see that I am compassionate, gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness (Exodus 34:16). You will acknowledge I am your Lord, your warrior, your confidante, and your friend. I am your loving Father, and I desire to hear from you and speak to you more regularly throughout your day. I do not forget you; please do not forget me. I love you.

Prayer:

Dear Lord, I give thanks that You are available to speak with all hours of the day and night. Please help me develop the practice of speaking with you more frequently throughout my day. I want to be dependent on You and honor You by putting You first in my life. I also desire a deeper connection and a more intimate relationship with You. That comes only by communicating with you more regularly. Lord, please speak to me specifically right now about how I can accomplish this goal. Please give me ideas that I can work on with You. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Father in heaven, please speak to me personally about how I might implement this ‘Pray Continually’ attitude. (Record all ideas and thought He gives you.)

 

  • Jesus, share with me how You maintain an attitude of praying continually. How do I accomplish this in my busy life? What do you require of me? (Write the impressions and thoughts you receive.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, please prick my memory all day long to think about communicating with God all day long as I carry out every activity. Help me discern Your voice and Your leading in this area. Please show me how You work in my heart to help me carry out this request. (Journal all you hear in your thoughts right now.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Most High God, thank You that I can approach Your throne of grace (Hebrews 4:16) with the confidence of knowing that I am Your child and You hear every word I speak. Lord, please help me discern Your voice within and hear every word You speak to me also. Lord, I am so grateful that I can experience a close relationship with You. Help me to maintain this two-way conversation with You that is so life changing and exhilarating. It truly is one way to experience the abundant life Jesus came to give me. Thank You that prayer is one of the ways I can experience intimacy with you. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Exodus 34:6-7, 6And He passed in front of Moses, proclaiming “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, 7maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness rebellion and sin.”

Deuteronomy 4:7, What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the Lord our God is near us whenever we pray to Him?

Psalm 4:1, Answer me when I call to You, my righteous God. Give me relief from my distress; have mercy on me and hear my prayer.

Psalm 6:9, The Lord has heard my cry for mercy; the Lord accepts my prayer.

Psalm 65:2, You who answer prayer, to You all people will come.

Psalm 86:6-7, Hear my prayer, Lord; listen to my cry for mercy. When I am in distress, I call to You, because You answer me.

Proverbs 15:29, The Lord is far from the wicked, but He hears the prayer of the righteous.

Mark 11:24, Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

John 14:13-14, 13“And I will do whatever you ask in My name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14You may ask Me for anything in My name, and I will do it.”

Galatians 5:22-25, 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.

Philippians 4:6-7, 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, 16Rejoice always, 17pray continually, 18give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Hebrews 4:16, Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

James 1:5-6, 5If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.

1 Peter 3:12, “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and His ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.” (also Psalm 34:15-16)

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

 

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 28 – Remain in Me

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 28

Remain in Me

Lord, please show me what it means to remain in You. How do I accomplish this? What practices do I need to put in place to reach this goal?

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My child, My top priority for you is that you stay in relationship with Me. How is this best accomplished? First and foremost, maintain a regular, daily practice of meeting with Me alone in the secret place. The secret place is merely an area in your heart that you reserve for Me exclusively. It may also involve a physical location that you deem our special meeting spot away from noise and distractions, but more accurately, it’s a place in your heart reserved for Me alone—entirely devoted to Me and no one else—a private place. What’s done in secret will be rewarded (Matthew 6:18).

Secondly, remain in My Word. When you linger in My Word, reading it and meditating on it, you will almost always experience Me. My Spirit within you will guide you to Scripture and make it come alive with meaning for you personally, both for your life in general, and for specific circumstances you are going through at any given time. If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you (John 15:7). Hanging out in My Word, saturating your mind with it, is very pleasing to Me. It is a sweet aroma that reaches deep into the middle of My heart. Your efforts will be rewarded as you make your requests known to Me.

Remain in Me and bear much fruit. I am the vine; you are the branch. If you remain in Me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from Me you can do nothing (John 15:5). The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23). You are known by your fruit. I, also, am known by your fruit. When you remain in Me and bear My fruit, others are drawn to Me through you. Fruit ripened on the vine has the choicest appearance and the sweetest flavor. Remain in the vine.

Remain in communication with Me through listening prayer. When you pray, go into your inner room where you will be alone with Me (Matthew 6:5-6). I will hear your requests and answer them. Be sure to listen as much as you speak. Leave room in the conversation for Me. I have so many things to tell you. Things you do not yet know, great and unsearchable things (Jeremiah 33:3). You belong to Me, you can hear what I say (John 8:47). You are My sheep, listen to My voice and follow me (John 10:27). Pray continually (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). Listen continually. This is My will for you.

Remain in step with the Spirit by laying down your own passions and desires, and living out Mine (Galatians 5:24-25). Walk by My Spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh (Galatians 5:16). Be led by the Spirit and remain blameless. Be obedient to My commands, allowing the Spirit’s power to enable you to do all things through Christ who strengthens you (Philippians 4:13).

Remain in obedience to Me. Remain in My love by keeping My commands. My greatest commands are these: Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. Love your neighbor you love yourself (Matthew 22:37-39). Love each other as I have loved you, by laying down your life for your friends (John 15:12-13). When you keep My commands, I know you love Me, and I will show Myself to you and make My home in you (John 14:20-23). I love you, My child. You are My dwelling place. Keep your heart engaged with Mine.

Prayer:

Thank You, Lord, for Your generous Spirit. You have shown me today how to be more engaged with You. I know You are with me always, but I do not always remember that fact. Please forgive me when I forget You. I know You never forget me. Help me to remain in You more completely by practicing all the steps You communicated to me above. And now I long to hear more messages from Your heart as I enter my inner room, the secret place, to connect with You in a more personal way. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Abba Father, help me see you and feel your presence during this time of conversation. Lord, speak Your heart to me right now and tell me the great, unsearchable things, I do not yet know. (Write down every word or thought that enters your mind.)

 

  • Jesus, my Friend, please allow me to know and feel Your presence daily in my heart. Let me know how You would like to best engage with me. What shall I do to be more obedient and responsive to Your voice? (Record every thought making it obedient to Christ.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, come and have Your way in me right now. Lead me, guide me, comfort me. Whatever I need to hear from You, Lord, please share it with me now. (Journal all your thoughts to Him and from Him.)

 

Review the Holy Spirit’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Dear Father in Heaven, thank You for creating me. Thank You for loving me so much that You sent Your Son, Jesus, to die for me and give me new life through His resurrection. Thank You for Your gift of the Holy Spirit who makes His home in Me and walks me through life, making me more obedient to You. I worship You, Lord, and I lift my voice. O my soul—Rejoice. I honor You and give You all the glory You deserve. I give myself wholly to You, Lord. Receive my feeble attempts to be obedient to Your commands, and teach me how to love You as deeply as You love me. In Jesus’ precious name, I pray Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Deuteronomy 30:19-20, “…Now choose life, so that you and your children may live. And that you may love the Lord your God, listen to His voice, and hold fast to Him. For the Lord is your life, and He will give you many years in the land He swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.”

Jeremiah 33:2-3, “This is what the Lord says, He who made the earth, the Lord who formed it and established it—the Lord is His name: ‘Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.’”

Matthew 6:5-6, “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

Matthew 22:37-40, 37Jesus replied, “’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40All the Law and Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Mark 9:7, Then a cloud appeared and covered them, and a voice came from the could: “This is My Son, whom I love. Listen to Him!”

Luke 10:39, She had a sister called Mary, who sat the Lord’s feet listening to what He said.

John 8:47, “Whoever belongs to God hears what God says…”

John 10:27, “My sheep listen to My voice; I know them, and they follow Me.”

John 14:20-23, 20“On that day you will realize that I am in My Father, and you are in Me, and I am in you. 21Whoever has My commands and keeps them is the one who loves Me. The one who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them… 23Anyone who loves Me will obey My teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.”

John 15:4-17, 4“Remain in Me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Me. 5I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in Me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from Me you can do nothing. 6If you do not remain in Me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. 9As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Now remain in My love. 10If you keep my commands, you will remain in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commands and remain in His love. 11I have told you this so that My joy may be in you and that your joy may be compete. 12My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from My Father I have made known to you. 16You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might to and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in My name the Father will give you. 17This is My command: Love each other.”

Galatians 5:16, So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.

Galatians 5:22-26, 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

Philippians 4:13, I can do all things through Him who gives me strength.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, 16Rejoice always, 17pray continually, 18give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

1 John 2:24-27, 24As for you, see that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father. 25And this is what He promised us—eternal life. 26I am writing these things to you about those who are trying to lead you astray. 27As for you, the anointing you received from Him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as His anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit—just as it has taught you, remain in Him.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 26 – Rescuer and Redeemer

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 26 

Rescuer and Redeemer

Lord, I have firsthand knowledge of You as my Rescuer and Redeemer. You rescued me from a life of sin and mediocrity. You redeemed me with Your own life to free me from the bondage of sin. You delivered me from the captivity of my enemy’s lies, and pulled me up out of the pit of depression. You set my feet on solid ground and began the rebuilding process in me. You exchanged the lies I believed for your perfect truth, and built up my faith and confidence in You. You prepared me to fulfill the purpose You created me for and gave me a new reason to live. Thank You for loving me enough to rescue me and redeem me from the life I created for myself.

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My beloved child, I am so excited that you recognize, appreciate, and bear witness to My transforming work in your life. With My own outstretched arms, I have lifted you up out of the muck and mire. I set your feet on solid ground—My firm foundation—and I began the rebuilding process in you. You have gone to difficult places, brokenness in your heart, and allowed Me to heal you with My truth. You have been set free, so now you are free indeed.

You have put Me first in your life by remaining in close relationship with Me. You meet with Me, pray to Me, listen to Me, and obey Me. I cherish you, and I treasure the time we spend together in the Spirit. As a child that runs home from school and throws open the door to tell his family about his day, I can’t wait for you to run through the door to our secret meeting place, where I can hold you in My arms and encourage you with My love and support.

On those days when you have been bullied and underappreciated, I love to uphold you and support you through your challenges. When you are knocked down, I pick you back up, and strengthen your spirit. When your soul has been depleted, I refresh you with a new filling of My Spirit, and a new meal of My bread from heaven. I nourish your soul and quench your thirst. I am your All in All. I am everything you need.

I rescue you from the mundane and give you meaning and purpose for your life, doing the work I have prepared in advance for you to do (Ephesians 2:10). I redeemed your life of sin and rebellion and exchanged it for a life of holiness and righteousness for the glory of My name’s sake. I rescued you because I delighted in you (Psalm 18:19). You are My beloved child, even My heir. All that I have belongs to you. I am a loving Father who desires a deeper intimacy with you. I created you to love you, and I saved you, so that you could love Me and relate to Me. Let’s get together again soon, My friend. I have so much more of My heart to share with you.

Prayer:

Dear Jesus, I camp on the verse from Psalm 49:15 that says, “But God will redeem me from the realm of the dead; He will surely take me to Himself.” Lord, You have so graciously done that for me and I am forever grateful to You. Thank You for rescuing me from my own dead inner spirit, and producing new life in me by the indwelling presence and power of Your Holy Spirit. Please speak to me now and share Your heart with me today. In the power of Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Father, thank You for reaching down to rescue me from a life that did not glorify You as You deserve. Please share with me Your heart and Your reason for saving me. (Record all the thoughts and ideas He gives you.)

 

  • Jesus, thank You for paying the price of my redemption. Please share Your heart with me on what You want me to do with this information. (Write all ideas that pop into your head right now.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, enable me to enjoy a closer walk with You by opening my ears to hear what You share with me now. (Jot down all words and thoughts that come to mind.)

 

Review the Holy Spirit’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, thank You for sharing Your heart and thoughts with me just now. I appreciate the closeness I feel when we meet. Help me to feel Your presence with me even when I don’t hear Your voice in my thoughts. You remind me that You are always with me; You never leave me or forget about me (Joshua 1:5). You are with me at all times, speaking to me and guiding me in the way I should go. I appreciate the love and affection You poured out on me today. Thank You for sharing your heart with me. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Joshua 1:5, “No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you or forsake you.”

Job 19:25, I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end He will stand on the earth.

Psalm 18:16-19, 16He reached down from on high and took hold of me; He drew me out of deep waters. 17He rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me. 18They confronted me in the day of my disaster, but the Lord was my support. 19He brought me out into a spacious place; He rescued me because He delighted in me.

Psalm 19:14, May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Psalm 34:22, The Lord will rescue His servants; no one who takes refuge in Him will be condemned.

Psalm 44:26, Rise up and help us; rescue us because of your unfailing love.

Psalm 49:15, But God will redeem me from the realm of the dead; He will surely take me to Himself.

Psalm 69:14, Rescue me from the mire, do not let me sink; deliver me from those who hate me, from the deep waters.

Psalm 91:14-16, 14“Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges My name. 15He will call on Me and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. 16With long life I will satisfy him and show him My salvation.”

Psalm 103:2-5, 2Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all His benefits–3who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, 4who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, 5who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

Isaiah 44:6, “This is what the Lord says—Israel’s King and Redeemer, the Lord Almighty: I am the first and I am the last; apart from Me there is no God.”

Isaiah 48:17-18, 17This is what the Lord says—your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: “I am the Lord your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go. 18If only you had paid attention to My commands, your peace would have been like a river, your well-being like the waves of the sea.”

Isaiah 59:20, “The Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who repent of their sins,” declares the Lord.

Isaiah 63:9, In all their distress He too was distressed, and the angel of His presence saved them. In His love and mercy He redeemed them; He lifted them up and carried them all the days of old.

Daniel 6:26-27, “For He is the living God and He endures forever; His kingdom will not be destroyed. His dominion will never end. He rescues and He saves; He performs signs and wonders in the heavens and on the earth. He has rescued Daniel from the power of the lions.”

Galatians 4:4-7, 4But when the set time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 5to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship. 6Because you are His sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.” 7So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are His child, God has made you also an heir.

Ephesians 1:7-8, In Him we have redemption thorough His blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that He lavished on us.

Ephesians 2:10, For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Ephesians 4:30, And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.

Colossians 1:13-14, For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son He loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

1 Thessalonians 1:10, and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath.

Titus 2:11-14, For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for Himself a people that are His very own, eager to do what is good.

1 Peter 1:18-19, For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.

2 Peter 2:9, If this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials and to hold the unrighteous for punishment on the day of judgment.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

Step 3 – Escape the Crowds and Noise

image of Stairs to open door. free concept 3d illustration

Step 3 – Escape the Crowds and Noise

My best chance of hearing God speak to me is to be alone with Him, one-on-One, away from the noise of a crowd. I encourage you to make a regular practice of sitting still in a quiet place, shutting out the world’s noise, and listening attentively to the voice of God.

Jesus served as a great role model for how to have a relationship with the Father. As He became better known in His ministry, multitudes of people followed Him. In order to hear instructions and receive refreshment from God, Jesus escaped the crowds and found quiet places to be alone with His heavenly Father. Jesus had the Spirit of the Lord within Him, just as we do, but He still preferred to listen to the voice of God the Father away from the noise of the multitudes. He even separated Himself from His closest companions, His disciples, in order to pray and to hear God’s voice: “Then Jesus went with His disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and He said to them, ‘Sit here while I go over there and pray’” (Matthew 26:36).

There’s not just one right way, one right time, or one right place to meet with Him. He will meet with you anywhere you are, any time of the day or night. He will speak to you wherever and whenever He has your attention. Seek out a quiet place next time you desire to hear God speak.

1 Samuel 3 provides many examples of how to listen to God, and adopting a childlike attitude is one of the most important. Samuel’s mother dedicated him to serving and worshipping the Lord. Even in his younger years, God spoke to him. This happened during a time when God rarely spoke to anyone, yet He chose to speak to a child. The idea that God holds a special place in His heart for children should cause us to wonder, Why?

Listed below are seven traits God loves in children:

  1. An infant completely depends on his caregiver. Likewise, God wants us to depend on Him for everything. A child trusts wholeheartedly. God asks us to trust in Him with all our hearts.
  2. A child’s mind is open, receptive to new ideas.
  3. A child’s faith has not been tarnished by life’s trials and disappointments.
  4. A child waits with excitement and anticipation to see what will happen next.
  5. A child comes before God with a pure heart, unburdened by responsibilities, regrets, fears, and doubts.
  6. A child believes easily and expects to experience the goodness of God.
  7. A child’s mind remains in its own little world, not distracted by crowds and noise.

When did God choose to speak to Samuel? What posture did Samuel assume? God spoke to Samuel when he lay down at night. Samuel stilled himself before the Lord; he heard the voice of God because he remained in a quiet place with no noise or distractions. Also note Samuel and even Eli, the priest of God, did not recognize or realize right away it was God speaking to Samuel. God did not give up after the first try, however. He pursued Samuel again. In fact, He called Samuel three times before Eli understood. Our God does not give up on us if we don’t hear Him the first time He speaks to us. Persistently, He speaks until we hear Him. Shouldn’t we give God as much in return by waiting expectantly to hear His voice? Shouldn’t we give Him our full attention, away from people and commotion?

When Samuel did realize God spoke, he positioned himself to hear God again; he returned to a quiet place and remained still. He waited patiently. Then God called him again, and Samuel humbly said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.” God spoke to him then, and He continued to appear at Shiloh and speak to him for many years, not letting His words fall to the ground or go unheard. He revealed Himself to Samuel through His word and His voice, and Samuel spread God’s message to all of Israel.

We can take lessons from the boy Samuel on how to position ourselves to hear from God. Do you practice being still, in quiet solitude, expectantly and patiently waiting to hear God speak? When you do, you will hear the voice of God.

As I decided to know God better and develop an intimacy with Christ, I eagerly got up early every morning to enjoy a quiet time with God. I used this time to journal my thoughts and prayers to Christ. I poured out my heart to Him. I shared my emotions, my fears, my joys, my anger, my desires—my most intimate feelings—with God. Then I tried to “be still, and know that He is God” (see Psalm 46:10).

I pictured Jesus sitting in my living room with me. He became a brother, a husband, a friend, and a counselor all wrapped up into one. He knew my every need, even before I asked. I listened for His voice and direction in my life. When I spent time alone with God and heard His voice, I hungered for more time in conversation with Him. In Luke 6:21, Jesus says, “Blessed are you who hunger now, for you will be satisfied.” Only God can satisfy the hunger in my soul; only He can fill that need.

Early morning offers me the quietest time and the best chance of hearing God’s voice. My mind is clearest first thing in the morning before I start thinking about all I have to do that day. I have made it my practice to get out of bed thirty to sixty minutes early to enjoy time with God away from the crowds and noise, even in the privacy of my own home. I completely relate to Psalm 5:3: “Morning by morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; morning by morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.”

When I first began my early morning practice of meeting with God, I felt unproductive. As I’ve said, often I fell asleep in the silence. Do you recall Jesus’ frustration with His best friends who fell asleep when He had asked them to keep watch while He prayed? I don’t want to be the one to fall asleep while meeting with the King of kings, do you? If not, do whatever it takes to stay awake and hear what God has to say to you.

Frequently, I found my mind wandering to the other noises in my head. When I became aware these things kept me from my purpose, I dealt with the distractions by writing them down. On a piece of paper, separate from my journal, I wrote down the busy thoughts that took up space in my mind and set them aside so I wouldn’t forget about them later. Then I resumed my still, expectant state of waiting on God.

If you’re not already in the practice of listening to God’s voice, you may not know how to begin. I like variety, so I start my time with God in different ways each day. In my book, 7 Simple Steps to Hearing God’s Voice, I share a few with you. If you have your own way already, don’t change it. But if you are looking for new ways to spend time with God, try one of my “7 Ways to Start Your Time with God.”

If you are not in an intimate relationship with Christ right now, I encourage you to set aside at least one thing on your busy schedule to make time for God and escape the crowds and the noise. Take a few minutes every day to be still and know God more intimately. Listen to His voice, hear what He says to you, and write it down. You’ll be really glad you did!

 

Click here to order this book now!

Book One in Hearing God's Voice Series

Book One in Hearing God’s Voice Series

“United” States of America? Not!

The One and Only True God of the "United" States of America

Jesus Christ is the One and Only True God of the “United” States of America.

May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of UNITY among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. (emphasis mine, Romans 15:5-7)

The one star on the flag pictured here suggests UNITY–Fifty individual states that come together to form ONE nation under GOD. In a week of divided discontent and the protests of a nation against the man elected by its people to serve as the next leader of the free world, it would behoove us to consider the Scripture above.

As followers of Christ, we are called to a spirit of unity, so that with one heart and mouth we may glorify God. Therefore, we MUST ACCEPT one another, just as Christ accepted us, in order to bring praise to God.

If you find yourself wanting to protest the most recent leadership choice of the nation, should you instead channel your energy into glorifying God by accepting one another? Remember the words of Paul in Romans 8:28 & 31, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose…What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?”

UNITY–“With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)

Since Jesus Christ graciously accepted me, a sinner, shouldn’t I imitate and obey Him by accepting others? With man (or woman), this is impossible, but with God all things are possible. Paul is the perfect example of how God can use even the worst of sinners for the good of those who love Him. I think God can handle the latest election results. Yes, God can use even Donald Trump for the good of those who love God. Let this be your testimony to your friends who are eager to sign their name to a petition and march with a sign in their hands. Imitate God and encourage a spirit of unity. Accept one another in order to bring praise to God.

And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. (James 5:16)

Pray for Donald Trump as he prepares to lead the Not-United States of America.

 

Give Thanks in Everything

Joy and Thanksgiving

by Sindy Nagel

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not put out the Spirit’s fire (1 Thessalonians 5:16-19).

 

I’ve put in you a joyful heart

A gift of my great love

When others look upon your face

They see your God above.

 

Give thanks in every circumstance

You meet along the road

This is My will for you in Christ

Who carries your heavy load.

 

My Spirit deep within your soul

Lives only for My name

He guides you in My will for you

Don’t quench My Spirit’s flame.

 

Your constant prayers and grateful heart

Are blessings unto Me

Living in My will for you

Will set your spirit free.

 

Be joyful always; pray non-stop

Give thanks for all I give

Listen to the words I speak

In abundance, you will live.

He is Greater

1 John 4:1–6 (NASB95)

Testing the Spirits

1      Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

2      By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God;

3      and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world.

4      You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.

5      They are from the world; therefore they speak as from the world, and the world listens to them.

6      We are from God; he who knows God listens to us; he who is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

My beloved child, I am in you and you are in Me. I am greater than anything or anyone in this world. I have overcome and will overcome any spirit that is in the world. You have the gift of my Spirit within you. You have the same power living in you that raised Jesus from the dead. My Spirit within you overcomes every spirit that is in the world. Test the spirits. Every spirit that confesses Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God. Every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. You are from God and have overcome them, because I live in you and I am greater. Do not fear the spirits of this dark world. You have the light of the world living in you; therefore, you have power over the darkness. I have dressed you in my Spiritual armor with the belt of truth around your waist and the breastplate of righteousness across your chest. Your feet are prepared with the gospel of peace and the shield of faith extinguishes the flaming arrows of the evil one. You wear the helmet of salvation and carry the sword of the Spirit, which is my Word. Use it as your weapon of choice to fight the enemy of your soul. Remain alert at all times and pray in the Spirit. When you have done everything, stand firm in the truth that I am greater than all evil, and I live in you and work through you. You are mine; you belong to me.

 

Ephesians 6:10–18 (NASB95)

The Armor of God

10      Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.

11      Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.

12      For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.

13      Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.

14      Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness,

15      and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

16      in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.

17      And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18      With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints,