Have you ever read a Bible verse like this and thought "that" sounds so good... but can I do "that?" Always be joyful.  Never stop praying.  Whatever happens, give thanks, because it is God’s will in Christ Jesus that you do this. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18  Maybe that's what comes to your mind when you read... Never stop praying? Never stop praying sounds like work, doesn't it?     Over time I've been learning that my relationship with God is more dependent on me than on him. What?  God is constant, never changing, always present. Me... I'm up and down, coming and … [Read more...]

  Have you ever wondered how to pray for someone? Maybe someone in your family or a close friend has gone off to college for the first time. How do you pray for him? Maybe your friend is in a new job... or maybe they are in an old job that has challenges every way they turn. How do you pray for her? There are so many scenarios.  Someone needs prayer and you're at a loss. I have a prayer for you to pray and it comes straight from the Bible....   This is my prayer for you: that your love will grow more and more; that you will have knowledge and understanding with your love; that you will see … [Read more...]

  Today is the 15th Anniversary of one of the most dreadful days in American history... 9/11. So much has been written and read... I don't know that I have much to add other than my personal story and my personal call to action.     My story is one of a distant bystander. That fateful morning I had a lazy morning at home.  I had the day off and was lounging in my pj's, reading the latest home decor magazines, enjoying a cup of tea, and watching the "Today Show" on TV. It was a most spectacular day with the brightest blue sky and I had plans to get outside and enjoy every … [Read more...]

For the past six weeks we've been discovering how to pray with power and purpose. This prayer discovery (which began here) has taken us on a journey through... The Lord's Prayer Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen. This is the prayer Jesus taught his followers … [Read more...]

Jesus taught us a prayer that is filled with power.  It really is the key to learning how to pray in a way that matters.  Today we'll discuss how we should pray as if our lives depend on it. If this is your first time in joining us for this series on prayer... you can jump in right here... or take a moment to scroll down below for a recap of what we have discovered so far on this prayer journey. Matthew 6 where Jesus taught his followers this prayer has been the focus of our prayer journey: “This is how you should pray: Our Father in heaven, let your name be kept holy. Let your kingdom come. Let your … [Read more...]

We've been on a journey of learning how to pray in way that matters. Today we're discussing a hot topic for many of us... how we forgive others.     Jesus packed a lot of power into this prayer he taught us and his followers to pray.  The Lord's prayer is a life-giving prayer.  It teaches us how to pray in a way that makes a difference.  Its concepts are life-changing. At the end of this post there is a recap of what we have discovered so far.  If you like, scroll down and read that first if this is your first time joining us.  Or.... jump in here, now. Our source for this prayer journey has … [Read more...]

We've been on a journey of learning how to pray in way that matters. I am so grateful that some of you have mentioned that this has been a helpful journey. For as long as I can remember, I have been fascinated with prayer.  Especially seeing the results of powerful praying and wondering how I can pray in a way that matters. At the end of this post there is a recap of what we have learned so far.  If you want you can scroll down and read that first if it's your first time joining us.  Or.... just jump in now. Our source for this prayer journey has been Matthew 6 where Jesus taught his followers this … [Read more...]

We've been on a journey of learning how to pray in way that matters. We began by looking at Matthew 6:6-8 NLT and discussed the first steps in learning how to pray in a way that matters. The first is to recognize that our prayer time is something to be treasured, it's a time of intimacy with God, and God rewards us for spending time talking with him. Second is to remember that God already knows what we need before we ask.  Because of this intimate relationship we have with him we don't have to explain things and we can relax and be completely honest. Third is to follow Jesus' very specific guidelines for … [Read more...]

  Prayer is this amazingly simple yet complicated communication we have with God. It's simple because God is always ready and listening... it's complicated because we tend to be rather selfish in our praying.  And yes that includes praying for other people. I'm reminded that a great marriage is one where we adore listening to our partner talk... we want to know their thoughts, their ideas, their hopes, their dreams, and even the crazy little details of their day.  But, sometimes, we have another agenda and we quit listening and we start dwelling on our desires. For most of us... our prayer time is more … [Read more...]

We want to pray in a way that matters. We want God to hear our prayers. And we want our prayers to help make things happen. Last week we looked at Matthew 6:6-8 NLT and discussed the first steps in learning how to pray in a way that matters. The first is to recognize that our prayer time is something to be treasured, it's a time of intimacy with God, and God rewards us for spending time talking with him. The second is to remember that God already knows what we need before we ask.  Because of this intimate relationship we have with him we don't have to explain things and we can relax and be … [Read more...]

Do you pray and wonder if you're praying "the right" way? Do you pray and feel like you don't see any results to your prayers? Do you pray and wonder if it even matters that you've prayed? For the next few weeks, we're going to delve into prayer and together we're going to discover this wonderful conduit we have with God, and learn how to pray in a way that matters.    Prayer seems like it should be so easy.  After all it's just a conversation with God. Yet, somehow, it seems we don't really know how to pray.   Evidently it was an issue when Jesus walked the earth, because he … [Read more...]

Are you bold?  Would you call yourself a risk-taker? Or... does that cause you to feel anxious? In the past I was a bit of a risk-taker. Except in areas where I might injure my body. It's amazing what one broken arm and sleeping with ten pounds of sand hanging from a cast, while trying to sleep sitting up in a chair for six weeks, did to cure me from that. And then, there was that bad business decision which has made me much more cautious.     I think we can agree that we need to use discretion, common sense, and wisdom in our daily activities.  Fear, however, should not control … [Read more...]

I love the morning....especially the first light of the morning.     A few days ago I awoke very early and looked out the window.  I was greeted with a most beautiful sight.  Imagine the sky as I saw it, still colored in twilight while being gently blushed with a transparent orange cast rising ever so gently from the horizon.   And to my right...a huge brilliant star sparkled.  At that moment, I was in awe and humble adoration of Creator God. In the morning, O Eternal One, listen for my voice; in the day’s first light, I will offer my prayer to You and watch expectantly for Your answer. … [Read more...]

  This week my heart was encouraged as I read these verses.... Hurry with your answer, God!    I’m nearly at the end of my rope.Don’t turn away; don’t ignore me!    That would be certain death.If you wake me each morning with the sound of your loving voice,    I’ll go to sleep each night trusting in you.Point out the road I must travel;    I’m all ears, all eyes before you.Save me from my enemies, God—    you’re my only hope!Teach me how to live to please you,    because you’re my God.Lead me by your blessed Spirit    into cleared and level pastureland. Psalm 143:7-10 The Message   Have you … [Read more...]

  Pray diligently. Stay alert, with your eyes wide open in gratitude.                                                                                                                                   Colossians 4:2 ~ The Message   Have you read the book of Colossians lately? If not, let this be your encouragement.  It is rich and full of wonderful teaching on how to live life fully, in the power of Christ.  Here at An Extraordinary Day, we are all about living life to the full. Our home church in Michigan is studying Colossians.  The pastor has asked the congregation to read one chapter in … [Read more...]

  Have you come across a pretty picture, a great quote, artwork, or even a Bible verse that you thought was unique or special in someway and you pinned it?  Just because? Somewhere online I came across the artwork of Peggy AplSEEDS.  I love the spirit and style of her art.  And yes....I had a pinning frenzy.  You'll see if you visit my Pinterest board. This morning I went to my boards to pick something to share on Facebook.  This sweet piece of art was inspiring and encouraging to me.    Peggy AplSEEDS   And then I read it again. And felt the power of the words. Do you have a … [Read more...]

  So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.   Hebrews 4:16 - NLT   What is the feeling that comes over you when you read this verse? Me? I feel empowered.     Picture someone in your mind who is wonderfully wise, strong, and loving.  He knows you well.  He truly cares about every. single. thing. in your life.  He always wants the best for you.  He has all the time in the world for you...to listen and to talk.  And he has every resource available to make things … [Read more...]