- A Prayer for
O Precious Savior, Wonderful Lord,
In-filling Holy Spirit…
Thank you Lord Jesus for this moment of sharing as I kneel down in the glow
of your love and mercy.
Thank you for my ability to work, to play, to plan, and to be your child.
In these times of my distress, please give me Perseverance
I seek your power to be patient as the ways of the world seem to assault me.
I seek your power to be patient with the people with whom I work and live.
I seek your power to be patient as I await your appearing again upon the
I seek your power to be patient with the aches, pains, sufferings, and
adversities of my life.
I know there is a proper time for all things.
I know I can cast upon you all my burdens.
When I am exasperated and feel the heat of anger because things are not
working as I think they should…touch my heart and instill your patience
Help me be still and know of your presence.
When the frustrations of life overtake me because of goals I have not
achieved, remind me your goals are my true destiny.
When disappointment rages within me over failures and setbacks, show me how
all things done in your name are successful in your eyes.
When the pain of life consumes me, show me the future.
As I hold dear to all you have for me in the future, show me the time of
rejoicing and singing in your name is just ahead.
When I am confined in the prison of my doubts and uncertainties, show me how
waiting upon you yields blessings so numerous all the seas of the earth
cannot hold them all.
In the name of the Precious Savior, Wonderful Lord God, and the In-filling
Holy Spirit upon whom we can rely.
- A Devotional for Self-Discipleship
2 Thessalonians 3:5 May the Lord direct your hearts into God's love and
Christ's perseverance. (NIV)
Many days in our life are not easy. Our teenage years are often filled with
the uncertainty, doubt, and anxiety of growing up. Our senior years are
often filled with the uncertainty, doubt, and anxiety of what lies ahead of
us as we near the end of our life. The years in between are often filled
with the stresses and strains of trying to raise a family, build a career,
and build enduring relationships. Every stage of life carries with it the
risk of trauma and loss. It seems that every week we face a new challenge of
some kind. In this life, in this world, we need a spirit that perseveres. We
must not let setbacks, failures, losses, pain, and suffering turn us away
from our God. It is the aim of the force of darkness to blind you and make
you believe God is not listening. The force of darkness wants you to believe
that God does not care about you. The wonderful truth is that God is
listening to you and to your heart. God is tuned into every thought you
think. God knows more about your tough days than you do. God blesses your
perseverance. God is with you as you struggle. God is with you as you weep.
He never leaves you alone. He is always ready to minister to every hurt and
need. It is because God is so willing to be there for you, that you must
persevere and be there for Him as one of His sons or daughters.
Staying the course…
Luke 18 1Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they
should always pray and not give up. 2He said: "In a certain town there was a
judge who neither feared God nor cared about men. 3And there was a widow in
that town, who kept coming to him with the plea, `Grant me justice against
my adversary.' 4"For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself,
`Even though I don't fear God or care about men, 5yet because this widow
keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won't
eventually wear me out with her coming!' " 6And the Lord said, "Listen to
what the unjust judge says. 7And will not God bring about justice for his
chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them
off? 8I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However,
when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?" (NIV)
Many of us want to give up sometimes. Life has a way of beating up on us and
we get tired. However, there is NO EXCUSE for giving up on believing and
trusting in God, in Christ, and in the work of the Holy Spirit. Satan wins
every battle if you do not keep on keeping on. Satan can destroy your body,
he can take people from you, and he can destroy your world. What Satan
cannot destroy is you without your consent. You can decide to remain, to
stay, to never move right or left from Christ’s path for your life. You can
stay focused and stay on track. You can decide to remain in Christ’s love
and grace. Even when you feel terrible in emotional or physical ways, you
can remain on the side of Christ. Eventually, your prayers are answered,
your longings for righteousness are fulfilled, and your yearnings for a
touch from the Master’s hand rewarded.
How love always perseveres…
1 Corinthians 13:7 Love always perseveres. (NIV)
Love always perseveres and never looks back. Love never stops, never quits,
never doubts, and never goes against the good. Love never loses sight of the
goal of glorifying God with all we have and with all we do. Love perseveres
over all obstacles because the stakes of winning are so high even thinking
about quitting is not an option. Love perseveres because Christ perseveres,
because God perseveres, and because the Holy Spirit perseveres. These three
in one are love. Love perseveres because love is too exuberant to stop. Love
has so much energy within it no one can prevent love's upward progress.
The secret of perseverance…
Hebrews 10:36 You need to persevere so that when you have done the will
of God, you will receive what he has promised. (NIV)
You know you must persevere. You know you must do the will of God. You know
that when you have persevered and done the will of God there will be a
reward. The secret, if there is a secret, to persevering and doing the will
of God is to take your selfishness out of the picture. Take your eye off the
prize and bury what you want in selflessness. When you lose yourself in
Christ’ love, care, and compassion then perseverance and doing the will of
God becomes automatic.
Never turning back…
Jeremiah 32:27 "I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too
hard for me? (NIV)
The road of our Christian faith is a long and difficult road to walk. There
are voices behind us calling out to us to come back and forget about this
faith business. There are voices behind us telling us the walk of our faith
is too difficult and things would be easier if we just forget about living
this Christian life. There are voices behind us that want us to turn back to
living our old life of sin, darkness, and hopelessness. The voices behind us
tell us there is no use in going on because our unseen God has no power. The
voices behind us tell us our unseen Jesus is just a myth. There are voices
behind us telling us our unseen Holy Spirit is just a story and of no
effect. What lies we hear coming from behind us! What a lie it is that we
serve a God of no power! What a lie it is that God does not love us, care
about us, or watch over us! What a lie it is that our old life of sin is
easier! What a lie it is that our old life of sin with all its pain,
darkness, and loneliness was somehow better! On this road of the faith, you
must remember our God is to be worshipped in love and He is not to be fooled
with. In God's time and in His will, God will welcome you into Heaven. For
this road of our faith leads not to some earthly mansion but to our heavenly
mansion. We do not take the slings and arrows of those who seek to persecute
us without knowing full well the consequences for them and for us. For them,
for those who reject God, reject Christ, and reject the Holy Spirit, there
is a fire waiting. For us, if we do not turn back there is Christ's eternal
joy and happiness. But to achieve our Christian goal we must not turn back.
We must listen only to the kind and gentle voice of our Shepherd who leads
Never giving up…
James 5:11 As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered.
You have heard of Job's perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally
brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy. (NIV)
Your world is full of trouble. In the future, the world's trouble may impact
you, your loved ones, your employment, your home, or other important parts
of your life. We do not live in a perfect place like the Garden of Eden. Yet
even in the Garden of Eden, trouble slithered in and temptation was placed
before Adam and Eve. In walking your daily walk of faith, you must make a
continual and conscious effort never to give up believing, hoping, and
trusting in God. In the midst of our many troubles, we have a God with a
powerful arm. Our job in the midst of these many troubles is to keep the
faith, keep others in the faith by our perseverance, and keep our heart in a
position of never giving up. Many people in the world consider it total
lunacy to worship, praise, and pray to a being we cannot see. Yet we know
that in the end and at the end, we will be given mountains of blessings. We
know even in any present trouble no matter what trouble may come to us, we
will most surely be comforted, blessed, and kept strong by God's mighty
hand. Because we will be comforted we shall never give up. Because we will
be blessed we shall never give up. Because we shall be kept strong we shall
never give up.
Never giving in…
1 Corinthians 16:13 Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of
courage; be strong. 14Do everything in love. (NIV)
There are times when you want to give up and give in. There are pressures
and forces of darkness and evil that twist you and turn you. The power of
evil lurks behind you and whispers in your ear while at the same time this
same dark power tries to directly crush your spirit with an in-your-face
assault. In your dark and lonely moments, when you think you do not have the
strength to wage this war, you must remember you have more going for you
than you can ever know. At this minute, as you read these words, Christ
Jesus is standing next to you pouring out His spirit of strength,
encouragement, and sustaining power upon you. At this very minute, as you
read these words, Christ Jesus is calling upon you to hold fast and not give
in. For Jesus knows what is just ahead of you. Jesus can see the golden rays
of heaven that will someday wrap their splendor around you. Your crucial
battle in these minutes with this present darkness can be won not by your
human will but by your simply turning your human will in the direction of
God's will. There are many costs to standing firm for Christ. However, there
is no cost greater than the cost He paid for each of us upon His Cross.
Because He did so much, He knows you can do this little bit of standing firm
and never ever giving in.
The power to stay where you are…
Psalm 103:26 They will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out
like a garment. Like clothing you will change them and they will be
discarded. 27 But you remain the same, and your years will never end. 28 The
children of your servants will live in your presence; their descendants will
be established before you." (NIV)
Ephesians 6:11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand
against the devil's schemes. (NIV)
For some people, there are times in life they feel compelled to change
everything because everything seems so rotten and awful. Perhaps you know
too well about these times. However, we are blessed by God to be able to
stand up against tough times. You are blessed by God to have a spiritual,
moral, and behavioral spine. Your spiritual, moral, and behavioral spine
enables you to fight back against the powers and forces that want you to
crumble under the weight of temptation, chaos, and an unraveling of life
around you. When you face a crisis, no matter what the circumstances, you
can stand up to the forces of evil that want you to change. In life's ups
and downs, there is a time to change and a time to remain fixed. It takes
wisdom to know what to do in every circumstance and it takes a heart willing
to only go in the direction of God's will to gain and possess this wisdom.
What everyone must keep in mind is changing is not always God's will. The
essential message of our faith in Christ has not changed in two thousand
years. Through every crisis, through every trial, and through every tumult,
our essential message has remained the same for two thousand years…the
redemption and salvation through faith in Christ. There will be times when
you desperately want to change parts of your life, but you must pray
earnestly God keeps you where you are if it is His will to keep you there.
You must also pray earnestly that God does move you to change if your
changing is His will. In the end, at the very last moment of our life, where
we live, what obstacles we encountered, and the circumstances we had to
face, make little difference. For in the end, as we see Jesus and feel His
arms wrapped around us in Heaven, the only thing that will make any real
difference to God will be whether you remained steadfast in your love, in
your devotion, and in your service for Him.
Pushing back against temptation…
1 Peter 5:8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls
around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9 Resist him,
standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout
the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings (NIV)
You do not need to be helpless against temptation. You are helpless against
temptation only when you have given up and decided you cannot fight back.
Indeed, you might be helpless against temptation using your own power and
your own will. With just your own power you are indeed helpless to fight
against the sinister power that wants to drive you into the ground…the
sinister power that urges, cajoles, and wants to draw you into doing what
you know you should not do. However, if you want the power, you can find the
power to stand against temptation by asking Christ to help you push against
temptation. In pushing back against temptation you must realize you do not
have to be alone at any moment of your life. Christ is always with you and
He will push back against your temptations that beg you to do wrong things.
When you combine your will and His will, when He and you push back against
temptation, no power of temptation can overcome you. When your hands and His
hands push against the dark urgings within your soul, then both He and you
can defeat the forces of evil plotting your failure. Most importantly, you
must understand a maximum effort on your part is mandatory. You must push
back against the darkness with all your might…push back against the darkness
lurking about you. To be able to push back, you must pray hourly to always
be in alignment with His will, to always be in alignment with His power, and
to always be in alignment with His love.
When you lose faith…
1 Timothy 1:12 I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength,
that he considered me faithful, appointing me to his service. 13 Even though
I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown
mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. 14 The grace of our Lord
was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in
Christ Jesus. (NIV)
What’s the use? Why believe? Why not just walk away? Why not just forget
about this faith thing? What not just forget about God? These questions are
questions people ask when any shred of their faith has been lost or any part
of their faith capability has never been energized. Every person on earth
who holds any belief in God will be confronted with times when their belief
ebbs away and seems to disappear. When you lose faith, you must remember to
stay the course. When you lose faith, you must remember Christ came to earth
and willingly suffered the torture and pain of the Cross so you would
believe. When you lose faith, you must keep your mind focused on what Christ
has done for you when He was upon the earth rather than focusing your mind
upon what you want Christ to do for you now. When we lose faith, we lose
faith because the power of darkness has come and overtaken us. When we lose
faith, we live in the darkness and do not see the Light. When you live in
the darkness you can regain the Light if you tell the truth…the truth you
have lost Him and you want Him back. Finding Christ after you have lost Him
is both difficult and easy to do. It is difficult to be honest and tell Him
you have lost Him, yet it is easy to be honest and tell Him you want Him
back. It is easy to be honest with Jesus for He understands you, loves you,
and He will always make a way for you to find Him again.
Luke 8:15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and
good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.
Having a good and noble heart is a wonderful trait. The heart alone,
however, will not do us any good. In addition to the heart we must be able
to listen to the small, quiet voice of God. When we read or listen to God’s
wonderful words in scripture, we must let the Living Water of the words of
God be absorbed into our heart and soul like the soil absorbs the rain.
After our souls or innermost being has absorbed the Living Water of the
words then we must retain the meaning, purpose, truth, and power of the
words within us. Good soil retains the moisture of the rain. Poor soil does
not retain the moisture. After we have absorbed the Living Water we must
persevere and do the hard work of life by standing against Satan and his
attacks, we must resist temptation, and keep going even when the storms of
life try to push down or destroy us.
How you must never give up…
1 Peter 5:10 And the God of all 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. 11 To him be the power
for ever and ever. Amen. (NIV)
No matter who you are, where you are, or what you must face each day, you
must never give up. You must never give up being a true child of God. You
must never give up trying to be 110% of who God wants you to be. You must
never give up surrendering all you are to Christ. You must never give up
trying to be righteous and devout in God’s eyes. You must never give up
being the kind of person others can count on when they face all kinds of
trials and difficulties. You must never give up because you are incredibly
important to the world. You are incredibly important to the people around
you. You are incredibly important to God. If you give up, it is as if you
have thrown sand into the bearings of God’s great and wonderful machine
called the kingdom of God . In the most personal of terms, others need you.
Others count upon you. Others look to you to see the light and love of God
in the world. When you refuse to give up, you change the world in which you
live. When you refuse to give up, you encourage others to change themselves
and their world. When you refuse to give up, you keep open the door leading
to unlimited possibilities and unlimited potential in your life. When you
refuse to give up, your light shines into the hearts of others and into the
very heart of God.
Source: Patrick Kelly,
Shepherd’s Care Ministries
Courtesy: Rosana D' Alessandro