I love the morning….especially the first light of the morning.

 

What did you expect? :: Praying big prayers. :: AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

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.
Psalm 5:3  The Voice

 

Just like that soft light that pushes over the horizon, which I anticipate each morning, is my expectation for God’s answer to my morning prayer.

 

If you believe, whatever you ask for in prayer will be granted.
Matthew 21:22  The Voice

I know that not everyone believes the Bible literally.  In the Gospel of Matthew there is an account where Jesus spoke to a fig tree and it withered.  He then told his followers that if they had faith, and didn’t doubt, they could do much more than that, they could tell a mountain to jump into the sea and it would.

Now I have never heard of a mountain jumping into the sea by a person telling it to do that.  Seriously, that is hardly practical, the consequences could be highly detrimental to both whatever/whoever lives on the mountain and the sea.  But, I think we all can agree that we all encounter difficulties or challenges that feel mountain-sized.

I think that Jesus was telling his followers that whatever they might face, even mountain-sized problems, if they had faith they would receive what they asked for in prayer.

This faith or belief that Jesus was speaking of was beyond a hopeful anticipation, instead it was more like a signed and completed contract that guarantees delivery.

 

What do you expect? :: Praying big prayers. :: AnExtraordinaryDay.net

Do not worry about anything, but pray
and ask God for everything you need, always giving thanks.

Philippians 4:6  New Century Version

In his letter to the Philippians, Paul admonished the Philippians to pray for everything they needed, giving thanks.  It almost seems odd that he would have to tell them to thank God.  Yet, I think there is a progression to effective prayers.

We need to have expectant hearts when we pray.  We need to pray prayers that expect God to do really big things.  I hear people pray all the time, “God, if it be your will, please do __________.”  If we spend time with God on a regular basis, we should have some idea that what we are asking is or is not in his will.  God does not keep everything wrapped up in secret boxes.  We may not know all the details, but we should sense in our spirit the direction we should go.

In my thinking, when we pray asking and end with, “if it be your will, God” we are in essence praying without faith.  And since we are also to be always giving thanks when we pray, well, how can we give thanks for something that we wonder about?  If we wonder, if God will answer the prayer we asked, we just might not be praying in faith.  God is not honored by that prayer, either.   Oh, yes, it sounds very humble and spiritual, but really, God is more honored when we ask him to do the impossible.   When was the last time you asked for a mountain to jump into the sea?

When we pray a great big audacious prayer we also need to wrap it in gratitude.  How is it that the God of the universe cares so much for you that he wants you to ask him for everything you need?  If he wants you to ask for everything you need, then I believe that he also wants to supply all your needs.  And that to me, spells Y-E-S and is an answered prayer.

If you call a friend to ask if they’ll drop you off at the airport and they say, “Yes,” what is your response?  I have no doubt that immediately you will reply with thank you.  You might even say it several times in different ways.  If your friend tells you that it won’t work in her schedule, you will still say, “Thank you,” won’t you?

When we go to God for something we can ask and keep asking and never stop asking until our request is granted, like the persistent widow.   Or, we could ask and then believe God has answered our prayer and thank him for it.  And instead of continuing the asking process, continually praise and thank him for the answer to our prayer.

 

About midnight Paul and Silas were praying
and singing songs to God as the other prisoners listened.
Suddenly, there was a strong earthquake that shook the foundation of the jail.
Then all the doors of the jail broke open, and all the prisoners were freed from their chains.
Acts 16:25-26 New Century Version

Not only is God honored by audacious prayers, but when we give thanks and praise God, we move his heart.  I don’t think that it is any coincidence that Paul and Silas and all the prisoners were freed from their shackles while Paul and Silas were praying and praising the God.

 

What do you expect?  Thanking God before he answers our prayers.  AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

As we grow in our trust of God, we grow in our prayer life.

Recently I have changed the way I pray.  No longer do I pray like the persistent widow.  Instead I make my request to God and then I thank him for the answer.  Then in subsequent prayer times, I thank God and praise him for his answer which I have not yet seen.

For more than a month now, we have been waiting for Tim’s name to be presented a church’s search committee.  He completed the initial interview and vetting process with a professional organization.  They in turn will present his name and information along with other names this week to the church.

We were thrilled that he made it to the second round.  Initially we had been praying and claiming this position.  And then we were prompted to stop asking and thank God instead.  Continually.

Once in a while, someone will pray for us, and almost always we hear them pray, “if it be your will, God.”  I almost always want to correct them.  This position is perfectly suited for Tim and he for the position.  We have been waiting for a very long time to be back “in the saddle,” so to speak.  We’ve been humbled, we’ve exhausted every resource (outside of God), and we believe that God intends to redeem, restore, and rebuild and that not only will he do that in our lives, but he will do that in this new position, as well.

The other day, a friend wanted to give him a referral for a totally different kind of position….just in case this one doesn’t work out.  That seems logical doesn’t it.  It’s always good to have a Plan B, or even Plan C or D.  Yes?  No…not this time.  This time we are sold out and asking all our friends to thank God for his wonderful provision. To stand with us in thankful agreement that this job is Tim’s.  Period.

 

What do you expect? ::  Matthew 2122 :  Thoughts on Praying Big Prayers ::  AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

 

To all the world, we may look like we have lost our marbles.  We don’t see it that way.  Instead, we see it as asking the mountain to be thrown into the sea.  We see it as asking God for the impossible.  We see it as believing that even before we asked, and Tim submitted his resume, God had already made a way for this “marriage” of man and church.  I’ll even go so far as to echo what the officiant says at the conclusion of a wedding ceremony, “Those whom God has joined together let no one put asunder.”  Okay…I’m pretty certain that seems like a huge stretch to you.  I assure you, it’s not.  

We have been in the waiting room for a few days short of five years.  We have a strong sense that this is what we’ve been waiting for.  And just like the “Yes” answer for the ride to the airport, we are thanking God daily for his goodness, grace, faithfulness, and trustworthiness in this situation.  We’re thanking God that Tim will again be working within his calling and giftedness.  We’re thanking God that he is not finished with us.  We’re thanking God for his amazing provision.  And we’re thanking God for orchestrating every single detail.  For battling on our behalf and on behalf of children.  We thanking God for the victory in Christ Jesus.

We’ve been praying mountain moving prayers with the faith that’s given to us each day.  And we are beyond expectant.  We are praising God for what he has done.  Want to join us in thanking and praising God for his answer to our prayer?  Just like something amazing happened for Paul and Silas….God’s going to move in a mighty way as we thank and praise him, too.

 

Joy Day! What do you expect when you pray? ::  AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 


Today is Joy Day!

 

There is no question…we move the heart of God when we continually give thanks.
And when we do….we receive the blessing of joy.

Join me in looking back over the past week and counting ‘seven’ –
both the good and the not-so-good.  

I’ll start…

Thank you God for…

  1. a dear sweet friend, whom I have never met in person, and for her thoughtful, tangible encouragement. 
  2. the best shortcake of strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries…and all those berries for just $2.49. 
  3. your Word that guides and encourages my heart each day.
  4. being able to look forward to what you have next for us, and writing hope in our hearts.
  5. a loving sensitive husband who strives to reflect you.
  6. knowing all your promises are YES in Christ Jesus.
  7. reminding us to not worry or fret, because we can trust you no matter what. 


Now it’s YOUR turn!!

Join me in counting ‘seven.’
Scroll down to the comment section…Share Your Extraordinary Thoughts….and list your ‘seven.’
I dare you!

Want even more joy?  Take the Joy Dare here.


Thank you for stopping by today.
I appreciate you and your sweet comments make my day.

Joyfully!
Diane

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Comments

  1. So inspired and prayerful. Thank you

  2. Debbi Saunders says:

    I have been joining you in prayer in much the same vein as you have just described about Tim’s job; I have never ended or begun with ” if it is your will” for your situation or my own.
    Today I am grateful for:
    1. I am grateful to God for Your Post and Charles Stanley Sermon this morning, for giving me great clarity on how to pray and believe for my situation with my home and how to attain “Greater Faith”!!!
    2. That my son has grown in Faith and Confidence through the Lord and continues to Excel in his college courses!
    3. Continue to be grateful and Praise the Lord that my car was repaired!!!
    4. Grateful that He continues to send me hope ,guidance and encouragement from so many sources!
    5. That I have Summer Camp!
    6 I am going to copy your #6! Knowing that all my promises are Yes through Jesus Christ!
    7.Also your #7! Reminding me not to worry or Fret because we can trust him no matter what!
    I am so grateful for your continued prayer support and words of guidance, hope, enlightenment and encouragement by allowing God to work in and through you to touch us all in a powerful way!
    Thank You Diane~~~

    • I want to share this with you,my son had been in ministry for several years and was speaking at different church’s and serving at our church and growing in his faith walk.He was all the while praying and expecting God to open a door for him to start a church cause my son had so much zeal to share the gospel.All the while he was climbing the corporate ladder at the company where he had been for almost 20 years,he got up to six figures.He called me and said I need you to pray about something but he didn’t tell me what.I could tell from his tone it was important so all night I prayed,I didn’t say Your Will cause I didn’t know what I was praying for.In that night God spoke into my spirit,I have never taken him out on a limb and cut it off.That has been a year ago,my son gave up a corporate job and is an associate PASTOR at our church.He will tell you he didn’t give up anything.:) I stand in faith with you.

  3. 1. New life sprouting all over the garden!
    2. The huge blessing of a day without registerable humidity!
    3. God’s timing!
    4. A loaner from the mechanic while waiting on a part for the lawn mower!
    5. A yard that looks like a lawn instead of a jungle!
    6. God’s comfort after having my most frightening dream in y-e-a-r-s!
    7. Good books.

  4. I do thank God, in advance, for answered prayers. Even when He answers “not yet” to some of mine 😉 I thank Him that He has purpose in the waiting. I also understand that some of my prayers, like prayers for healing, may not be answered in this life but am thankful that they will be in the next. At any rate, our husbands won’t need jobs to pay bills in heaven so I hope for what is unseen when praying employment prayers!! I really “needed” this post (and your thoughts have weight with me because of your struggles) because I am now going to stop praying that God will deliver our son from cigarettes and start thanking Him that our son will quit smoking. My seven: That mom spent Memorial Day with us. For son’s new glucose sensor equipped to sound an alarm when he is dangerously low. For finally getting organized enough to get to my art supplies. For hubby cleaning out the storage shed and weeding. For a husband who makes good use of time when employment is slow. For our son in law’s 23 years of military service. For our church’s new men’s Bible study meeting at noontime so many men can attend. For a new medicine that stops my migraine headaches.

  5. What a lovely post, Diane. You so eloquently stated exactly what I believe.
    1. Thankful to God for blessing me with a friend like you.
    2. Thankful that we serve a God who is BIGGER than any mountain we face and loves us abundantly.
    3. Thankful that my truck passed inspection (woot woot woot) and that the Lord led me to just the right internet search to do a minor repair myself.
    4. Thankful for food in the refrigerator and a roof over our heads.
    5. Thankful for my husband’s health improving.
    6. Thankful for the love of my 3 sons.
    7. Thankful for the God-given dreams that put a smile on my face and joy in my heart daily.

  6. Judy Scantland says:

    Thanking God with you, Diane. Hugs….

  7. I love this post, Diane! I’m singing Hallelujah, praising God for his answer to our prayer for Tim’s new position! You are so right in this! When we know we are praying in God’s will, we don’t have to pray “if it be your will, Lord”. I so look forward to God’s provision in this!

    Diane, I’ve also been along this same track with my prayers this week for our family situation. Isn’t that amazing? Yes, I am grieving for the loss of a relationship, a person in my life…but I am thanking God that He has promised to restore them to my life – and to Him (which IS His will, and we know it). My job is to show them love…and to wait. I prayed for God to help my unbelief. He guided me through scripture (and I didn’t search, He took me to it) where God brought His people/sheep back to His promised land/home. Praise God from whom all blessings flow!! I am thankful, Father, for:
    1. Your faithfulness.
    2. Your word and your promises.
    3. Time spent with you daily.
    4. Your voice through your word and music and circumstances.
    5. Faithful prayer warriors.
    6. Teachers of truths about praying away the darkness of evil.
    7. Your balm for a broken heart.

    I am thankful for you and Tim, that you are shining the light of Christ brightly in our dark world!

  8. Wow…powerful post. Gorgeous photos. And as you ask, so shall I alter my prayer of thanksgiving.

    My joys
    — coming here and reading this.
    — discovering something lost which wasn’t lost
    — the Bug’s t-ball t-shirt that proudly reads “Bug” on the back cuz that’s what she requested. LOL!
    — getting the whirling dervish for the weekend…woohoo
    — magic rooting powder that really works
    — the love of he-who-did-everything….how did I get so lucky!! (Yes, I know….G-d’s amazing plan for my life.)
    — being missed….and knowing it was true.
    — sidewalk chalks. LOL. Gotta love the bold colours they now come in!!
    — hearing G-d.
    — praying for you and Tim.

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