Another excellent talk from Joe Rigney. This time he talks about the subject of his book Live Like a Narnian. Click the video and listen in and journey through Lewis’ Wardrobe to learn how we can become better disciples of Jesus Christ
Live Like a Narnian: Christian Discipleship in C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles
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Over the years, as I’ve prayed for my own heart, I’ve accumulated seven “D’s” that I have found helpful. Maybe you’ll find them helpful as well.
With seven you can use them a number of ways. You might choose one “D” per day. Or you could choose one “D” as a theme for a week and pray through these every seven weeks. You’ll also note that I have a verse for each prayer. But over time as you pray more verses will come to mind and you might find it helpful to collect them so they are right at hand as the Spirit leads.
I begin each prayer with the phrase “whatever it takes, Lord” because the Bible teaches us to be bold and wholehearted in our praying, not reticent. I also use the phrase because it tests my heart. How much do I want God and all he promises to be for me in Jesus? Do I really want true joy enough to ask for my Father’s loving discipline to wean me from joy-stealing sin? And how much do I trust him? Do I really believe that he will only give me what is good when I ask in faith (Luke 11:11–13)? “Whatever it takes” prayers help me press toward and express childlike trust in the Father.
Delight: Whatever it takes, Lord, give me delight in you as the greatest treasure of my heart.
Desires: Whatever it takes, Lord, align the desires of my heart with yours.
“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 6:9–10)
Dependence: Whatever it takes, Lord, increase my awareness of my dependence on you in everything so that I will live continually by faith.
“I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)
Discernment: Whatever it takes, Lord, teach me to discern good from evil through the rigorous exercise of constant practice.
“But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.” (Hebrews 5:14)
Desperation: Whatever it takes, Lord, keep me desperate for you because I tend to wander when I stop feeling my need for you.
“Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep your word.” (Psalm 119:67)
Discipline: Whatever it takes, Lord, discipline me for my good that I may share your holiness and bear the peaceful fruit of righteousness.
“He disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” (Hebrews 12:10–11)
Diligence: Whatever it takes, Lord, increase my resolve to do your will with all diligence.
“Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.” (Ephesians 5:15–16)
These are just suggestions. The Lord may lead you to pray in other ways. But however he teaches us, whatever means we find helpful, may God cause us all to grow in faith until we pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17) and never lose heart (Luke 18:1).
A great article from Jay Younts at Shepherd Press
April 4, 2013
Speculation about the actions of North Korea have become a little more interesting. Of particular note is the announcement that the North Koreans have approved a “merciless nuclear attack” on the United States.
In some form or fashion you children will hear of the growing tension. They will have questions or concerns or in some cases, fears that need to be addressed. I am on safe ground in saying that not once in the national media will you hear a newscaster urge that the Living God of the Bible be called upon for protection. If God is mentioned at all it will be only after something horrific has happened. So what do you tell your children?
First tell them that just because God is not acknowledged by the media does not mean that he is powerless. All of these events with North Korea are unfolding as he has purposed. You can also point out that as a country we have begun to act as if God does not care what is written in his word. Our leaders can attempt to tinker with the institution of marriage as they deem it to be politically correct and fashion it to their liking. Elected officials and judges can continue to endorse the killing of children either in or out of the womb. We continue to appeal to a moment of silence so that gods that are not Gods at all will not be offended.We are a nation that is playing chicken with God. Praise God that in the end the Ruler of the Universe, Jesus Christ, will do what he has purposed to do – bring honor to his name. This is the message your children need to hear.
At this point we don’t know how this crisis will end. We don’t know if we will come to the brink of war and then back away, as was the case of the Cuban missile crisis fifty years ago. Perhaps this time military action will be taken. What we do know is that God will be faithful to his honor and plan.
…Click here to read the rest at Shepherd Press…
Fear is like the monster under my kids’ beds — its power is fueled not by what’s really there, but by what might be, what we imagine could be. Fear is a hollow darkness in the future that reaches back through time to rob our joy now by belittling the sovereign goodness of God.
But if we are in Christ, if we cling to him by faith, we don’t have to fear. Really, we don’t.
John Piper explains why in a 2001 letter he wrote to the people of Bethlehem. The point of the letter is to highlight several promises in the Bible that we can remember when the temptation of fear assaults us.
13 Reasons Not to Be Afraid
- We will not die apart from God’s gracious decree for his children.
- Curses and divination do not hold sway against God’s people.
- The plans of terrorists and hostile nations do not succeed apart from our gracious God.
- Man cannot harm us beyond God’s gracious will for us.
- God promises to protect his own from all that is not finally good for them.
- God promises to give us all we need to obey, enjoy, and honor him forever.
- God is never taken off guard.
- God will be with us, help us, and uphold us in trouble.
- Terrors will come, some of us will die, but not a hair of our heads will perish.
- Nothing befalls God’s own but in its appointed hour.
- When God Almighty is your helper, none can harm you beyond what he decrees.
- God’s faithfulness is based on the firm value of his name, not the fickle measure of our obedience.
- The Lord, our protector, is great and awesome.
[Read the original article at Desiring God.]