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January 8

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“Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7 NLT).

From: January 8, 2019

ARE YOU PERSISTENT IN PRAYER?

Jesus used one verb and three participles to teach persistence in prayer. His verb was “keep on.” This gives the idea of persistent and ongoing prayer. Yet, it has a stopping point with a promise. We are to “keep on” until we receive, find, or have opened that which is the focus of our prayers. So, “keeping on” is key.
 
The three participles, “asking, seeking, knocking” describe that which we must “keep on” doing in prayer. Asking is an admission of emptiness. It has been said that asking is the currency of heaven. As God’s children, we ask for our needs to be met. He is a good Father and will not give us a “snake when we ask for a fish” (Matt. 7:10). In asking we become as a child admitting that we don’t have what is needed and that only the Father can supply it. Ask until you receive.
 
Seeking is an admission of lostness. We seek directions for the way because we are lost, or we seek because we have lost something we care about. Where should we look? We tend to look in all the wrong places. Yet, Jesus tells us to look to the Father. Seek to find yourself and whatever is lost, in and from the Father. Seek until you find.
 
Knocking is an admission of desiring admission. We say with our knocking, “Let me in, please open the door.” And with our persistent knocking we say, “PLEASE OPEN THE DOOR!” This may seem ill mannered, yet the one who is in a desperate situation will have no qualms about persistent and loud knocking. It does not offend the Father to hear you knocking on heaven’s door. Knock until the door opens.
 
PRAYER: Lord, we come to You today asking, seeking and knocking. We are learning to “keep on” in our prayers to You with persistence. For You would have us admit our dependence on You for all things. So that we look to You for all things. Father, help us. We are empty, lost and shut out without You. We look to You to fill us, find us, and open the way for us. In Jesus name, Amen.

“Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7 NLT).

From: January 8, 2018

In Christ’s sermon on the mount, we learn something about persistence in prayer and more importantly, about the goodness of the Father in answering. Jesus taught His followers to be persistent in “asking, seeking and knocking.” Then, He revealed the Father’s heart by comparing the good gifts that even sinful parents give their children with how much more the Heavenly Father will give good gifts to those who ask Him (Matt. 7:11).
 
The currency of the kingdom is asking. As the apostle James wrote, “You have not because you ask not” (James 4:2).

“Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?” (Matthew 6:27 NKJV).

From: January 8, 2017

In His Sermon on the Mount, Jesus discussed the sinful and wasteful human activity of worry. Clearly, worry is sinful because it is an expression of anxious doubting. And doubt is the opposite of faith. Three times in this sermon, Jesus said, “Do not worry.” Now, if He had said it once, it would be enough, but He said it three times! Worry isn’t just a bad habit. It’s a sin. Not only that, it’s useless. Worry is a wasted activity. Jesus asked if anyone could cause their body to grow “one cubit” (about 18 inches) by worrying. Of course, this is a ridiculous question. Worry doesn’t work, it doesn’t accomplish anything. It certainly can’t cause growth of even one inch, much less, “one cubit.” So, what can we do? Jesus said to “seek first” God’s kingdom and let the Lord care for you. In other words, give your worries to God, turn them into prayers. As the apostle Paul said, “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything” (Phil. 4:6 NLT).

“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble” (Matthew 6:34 ESV)

From: January 8, 2016

Worry is a wasted activity. It is also a sin. For it begins with a lack of faith that doubts God’s protection and provision. Worry is like a puppy that won’t return its master’s slipper, gnawing and growling, it won’t let go of a shoe that it neither owns nor needs. Can you change your tomorrow with worry? Can you add one hour to your life by being anxious (Matt. 6:27)? Worry is anxious self-talk. Why not use the same effort to turn this inward dialogue upward? Turn your worries into prayers. Give the “shoe” back to the Master owns tomorrow.

“Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?” (Genesis 18:25 NKJV)

From: January 8, 2015

When two of the three “men” who visited with Abram left towards Sodom, the third one turned aside to reveal their destination and purpose. When Abram heard that they intended to see whether the “outcry” of Sodom’s sin was as great as it sounded, Abram began to appeal to God’s justice for the sake of the righteous. As the story unfolds, we see that the two men visiting Sodom are in fact, angels. And we see that the One remaining to speak to Abram is revealed to be the Lord. In Abram’s prayer we hear him appeal to God’s sense of justice. We are learning about God’s character here and also Abram’s. In a crazy kind of prayer/negotiation, God agrees not to destroy Sodom if there are but 10 righteous there. I think Abram must’ve known the wickedness of Sodom, but he didn’t want his nephew, Lot, to fall under judgment. We learn from Abram’s prayer how we should passionately and reverently pray for the salvation for our family, neighbors and friends. We also learn how God heard Abram’s prayer and preserved Lot, even though there were no righteous found in Sodom and it fell under God’s judgment.

“Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need” (Matthew 6:33)

From: January 8, 2014

This is from Jesus’ sermon on the mount. Focus on the eternal things of God and trust Him with your temporal earthly needs. When Jesus teaches us to stop worrying and start seeking God, He is giving us the proper focus for our internal voice. Stop the self-talk (worry) and start talking to God (prayer). It takes the same amount of energy to pray as it does to worry, except the first actually works. Turn your worries to prayers. Lift up your eyes and hearts and seek God’s kingdom!

“O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!” (Psalm 8:1)

From: January 8, 2013

David addresses this psalm to both the Transcendent Ruler of all the earth, as well as the Immanent Lover of his soul. “O LORD (יְהוָ֤ה Yahweh) meaning “I AM,” a name so holy that the scribes washed their hands before writing it. And “our Lord” (אֲדֹנֵ֗ינוּ Adonenu, from Adonai), the title the Hebrews used to call upon the One who had made them His chosen ones. Jesus follows this prayer formula in His model prayer, yet reverses the order, revealing an even more personal name (“Our Father” personal/close) in the first place and retaining the idea of transcendence (“which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name”) in the second. We learn much about God from both of these prayers, but Jesus alone gives us the right to pray to Him as “our Father.”

“Then you will understand what is right, just, and fair, and you will find the right way to go. For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will fill you with joy” (Proverbs 2:9-10)

From: January 8, 2012

How one receives a Judeo-Christian Worldview. Let the Word of God rewrite your mental hard drive. For the Christian, this is the transformed mind of Romans 12:2.

“I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD” (Genesis 18:19)

From: January 8, 2011

God chose Abraham. Has God chosen you to “direct” your family back to Him?