Monday, March 31, 2008

86 Articles on Prayer

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Sunday, March 23, 2008

Quote; Unquote . . .

Intercession is a stethoscope to the heart of God. Shhh! Listen! The more you listen the more you'll hear His heart. The more you hear His heart the more transformed into His likeness you will become. Can you hear it even now? That is the Father's heartbeat. Listen carefully. You'll soon discover that His heart beats for your company. Alice Smith

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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Local Church Pastors Prayer Partners Program

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THE CHURCH AT PRAYER: Practical Ideas to Help Your Church Become a House of Prayer

Bethany Baptist Church
Bethany Baptist Church in Salem, Oregon has a well-organized Pastors Prayer Partners Program. The prayer partner commitment is to pray on a regular basis for the pastors and church for one year, asking for God's hand to move in their pastors' lives and in the ministries of their church. Click here for more information
Be sure to click on the Info Sheet on the left hand side of the page for a useful pdf file!

Pastors Prayer Partners Program

In the late 19th century, the great orator, writer and pastor, Charles Spurgeon, helped fuel a massive growth of Christianity in England with his fiery brand of preaching and his stirring and thought-provoking essays and devotions. Operating out of the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London, Spurgeon led a congregation of more than 10,000 people each Sunday in teaching, prayer and worship.

While giving a tour of his church to a group of people, he asked if they would like to see the boiler room of the church. He took them to the boiler room and there was a mass of people praying. Spurgeon said that it was these prayers that kept the "spiritual heat" within the church.

At the exact time he was preaching on Sundays to the masses, members of his church would gather in the church boiler room to pray. These early-day prayer warriors were specifically asking for Gods blessing over the services led by their pastor. This unique approach to prayer no doubt played a large role in the success and effectiveness of Spurgeon’s ministry and the spread of Christianity throughout 19th century Europe.

Click here for more information

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Prayer Styles Influence Intercession

Who Am I?

by Cynthia Hyle Bezek

–from PrayKids! Issue 19: Prayer Styles

The Bible is full of stories about people who prayed. But did you know that these great pray-ers used many different prayer styles? Can you figure out who the intercessor is in each of these stories? Which one are you most like?

I’m a nations intercessor. God gave me a specific assignment to pray for the nation of Israel. He told me about Israel’s problems and sins, and then He told me to be a watchman for Israel. He said that I would be able to save people’s lives by praying for them and then warning them about what God says. My story is in Chapter 33 of the Bible book that comes between Lamentations and Daniel.

I’m a warfare intercessor. I helped my friend Paul start the church in Colosse, so of course I cared about those Colossian Christians! Imagine how upset I was when I heard that Satan was trying to get them to believe lies about Jesus! I was so mad! I started...

Click here to read the rest of this article.

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Saturday, March 15, 2008

Prayer That Changes Chruches

San Diego, CA

February 27-28, 2008

>>>The following is a recap of my "Prayer That Changes Churches" workshop by San Diego prayer leader Thomas Bush . . .

We gained new insights into God’s work among His people as Rev. Phil Miglioratti challenged us to change the leader, list, and location of our praying during the “Prayer That Changes Churches” worship and prayer services in February.

Pastor Phil reminded us that the Holy Spirit is the One Who leads us into all truth and discloses the Father’s heart to us. (John 16:13-14) What a difference it would make if we followed the lead of the Holy Spirit during our prayer meetings!

Next, Phil talked about our prayer lists. Pastor Phil acknowledged that our lists contain many “good” things to pray about, however, he asked an important question about our lists: If God answered all the prayer requests on our lists, would it make a difference in our communities? Of course, we would all rejoice at healed bodies and comforted hearts, but would God’s purposes for our world be fulfilled?

After all, as Pastor Phil shared, two of God’s purposes for answering prayer are: that His purposes would be fulfilled and that He would be glorified. In order to pray more in concert with God’s purposes, Pastor Phil suggested that we pray “across our prayer lists” rather than “down our prayer lists.”

As Pastor Phil described, if we only pray “down” our prayer lists, we can end up spending our prayer time simply informing God about our problems. On a personal level, this could give us the idea that our prayer times are all about us, and not about what God wants. As a prayer group, at the end of a prayer time like this, we could come away feeling emotionally drained, even slightly depressed as if the sum of our lives and the lives of those around us consisted only of problems.

Instead, Pastor Phil suggested that we pray “across” our prayer lists to help us keep in mind God’s intention for prayer. How do we do that? By adding 2 words to our prayers: “SO THAT.”

Imagine that our prayer lists have 3 columns. Column 1 contains our prayer requests. Columns 2 and 3 are added to our prayer list to remind us of God’s purposes in answering prayer. Column 2 reminds us that God is committed to fulfilling His purposes in the lives of those being prayed for. Column 3 reminds us that God’s ultimate goal in answering prayer is to glorify Himself.

So, rather than praying “Lord, I pray that you would heal my pastor,” and then going to the next prayer request, we could pray: “Lord, I pray that you would heal my pastor, “so that” he will fulfill the purpose you created him - to preach the gospel “so that” you will be glorified in bringing the lost to Yourself.”

Making these changes causes us to focus on God’s purposes and promises rather than our problems. Colossians 3:2 says, “Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.” By focusing on God’s purposes, we get on God’s agenda for answered prayer rather than asking God to get on our agenda.

In addition, Pastor Phil challenged us to add requests to our prayer lists for our neighborhoods that reflect the kingdom purposes of God. How would the items on our prayer lists change if they were motivated by what is on the heart of the Father? He questioned whether the condition of our communities is related in part to our churches not praying the prayers that are on God’s heart for them.

Finally, Pastor Phil advocated that we change the location of our prayers. He correctly identified that most of our prayer time is spent in “holy huddles” (with other believers inside the church building) away from the places in our communities where the Lord wants to make His presence known. He strongly recommended that we “get out of our seats” and “into the streets” so that the Lord can give us insights into how to pray for the lost and for our communities as we prayerwalk, setup “prayer stations,” visit schools, etc., and pray the prayers that are on God’s heart wherever we go.

May the Lord use this message from the man of God to motivate us to be churches that are changed as we pray those things that are on the heart of God, as led by the Holy Spirit, according to the purposes of God and in the places in our communities where, through the Church, the manifest presence of God can have a transforming influence on our culture.

Ephesians 3:20-21:
“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.”

Ephesians 3:10:
“so that the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known through the church to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly places.”

Written by Thomas Bush, Prayer Coordinator, San Diego Southern Baptist Association March 14, 2008

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Thursday, March 13, 2008

Prayer Burn-Out?

Hindrances to Intimacy
with God
By Alice Smith
If we don't acknowledge the possibility of burnout, we will find ourselves burnt out. Burnout is when one is sapped of physical, emotional, and spiritual strength. You don't have to be a minister, to experience this….just let people know you like to pray and it can happen to you. Burnout can happen when we see ourselves as the ones who should take every prayer request regardless if they are our God-given assignment or not.
Taking every prayer assignment that comes along is how some well-meaning Christians find significance. Don't slip into this "messianic role" because it has the potential to lead to pride.
Most praying Christians aren't prideful at all. They are simply immature. Bless them, they've not been taught how to determine God-assigned topics. If that is you, there's no condemnation. Learn today! A God assigned topic is one that pricks your heart, stirs your emotions and captures your thoughts. It's a "ah-ha" moment in your spirit. That is a God-given assignment to accept for prayer.
Other people who pray are just reluctant to say "no." Interpreted as uncaring or unspiritual, the fear of men causes some to say "yes." Wow, that was me! I struggled with disappointing people, so I took on every prayer need given to me. Not good, no, not good at all. Probably like me, you might feel that the Lord expects you to pray fervently for every need out there. Dear God, how could any of us do this effectively? We can't.
If we have a poor "father image" we may accept prayer assignments in hope of getting God's fatherly approval. Guess what? You are accepted just as you are. (See John 3:16; Eph. 1:6) Isn't that great news?
Chuck and Delsie Moore are a precious godly couple, living in the St. Louis, Missouri area. They are board members of the U.S. Prayer Center. Chuck is one of the most gentle, yet effective prayer warriors you could ever meet. Everything about him radiates the love of Jesus. His wife, Delsie cares for their grandchildren in her home. Chuck shared this story and describes perfectly the kind of child/father relationship God wants from us.

"Elly is a shy 2 years old and a very precious little girl. Delsie cares for Elly, our granddaughter, while her parents work so I see her most every day. She has been very stand-offish with me for some time. But every time I would see her I would say "Hi Elly!" and she would say NO! in a very stern voice. I have tried and tried to win her love but all she would do is say "NO!"
One evening the family was together and Elly wanted her mother to read a book to her. Her mother was busy preparing supper so she told Elly she didn't have time right then. So I said "Elly, I will read the book to you." I'm thinking in my mind she will never let me read to her. But to my surprise she climbed up in my lap and let me read the book. After I read to her Elly went back to saying "NO!"
However, little by little these past few months it has gotten where she will say "Hi" and sometimes "Hi Poppa." Yesterday I drove over to my son's house and Elly was in the driveway. Without hesitation she ran straight to me and jumped up into my arms. Of course I smothered her with hugs and kisses.
Isn't this a picture of our relationship with Father? He longs for a relationship with us and draws us to himself time after time and we continue to say "NO!" Sometimes when we want something bad enough we will come to him but after we get what we want we go back to "NO!" But because he loves us God keeps trying to build a relationship with us.
We may even get to the point when we will say "Hi!" and "thank you" and think we have a relationship with God. All the while what he really wants is for us to jump into his arms so he can lavish his love on us.
Chuck Moore, sent by email, May 6, 2007

Great story, huh? If we suffer from guilt whether true or false guilt, we may take these prayer assignments subconsciously hoping to earn a right standing with God; when it can only be found with genuine confession, the cleansing blood of Christ deciding to forgive ourselves and forgive those who have hurt us. (See 1 John 1:9, Matt. 18:32-35)
Self condemnation, feelings of unworthiness, rejection, and performance will cause us to attempt to use activity to find personal significance. All of this leads to burnout.
The result of burnout is that we lose our desire and ability to silence our hearts for genuine intimacy with Jesus but instead move into a work mode that creates a blackout in our life.
Blackout is when we are numb, tired, and unable to hear the voice of God. Why does this happen? Because if we look for power (approval from men, driven by having to get answers to needs, or seeking approval from God by working) instead of passion, then our relationship with Jesus will be driven by a adolescent attitude that expects Jesus to meet us on our terms. That is soulish, not spiritual. And it's a good sign of blackout.
Intimacy with God is the foundation of our spiritual authority. We have no more authority over darkness than we have intimacy with the Father. To the degree of the depth of intimacy we have gained with Jesus, to that degree we will see warfare breakthrough in the heavenlies. As we, his Church, approach the challenges foretold in Scripture for the last days, we will need more and more authority--thus more and more intimacy with God!
Power follows passion, and not in reverse. Power is often selfish, demanding, and aggressive. If we seek power first, then we are likely to become self-motivated following our own desires instead of God's will. However, if we passionately seek to be God's intimates, then the power to live, pray and achieve breakthroughs will result. Passion for Jesus should always be our first priority in life. Passion to serve him, love him and appreciate him on his terms.
So what is intimacy? Here's my definition. "Intimacy is a close or warm friendship, a feeling of belonging together, and a loving relationship that stems from a strong mutual intention to share feelings, understanding, and communication." Intimacy doesn't "just happen." It must be intentionally sought, cultivated, and maintained. It's a continual process, not an event. Release any guilt or shame from the yesterdays, and start your journey fresh and new today....hurry, Jesus is waiting for you!

UPDATE ON EDDIE: What a wonderful group of Christian friends you are. Thank you for all the love letters, prophecies, words of knowledge, Scriptures, PayPal gifts, checks and commitments. My sweetheart is resting like never before. His birthday was March 5, and we celebrated it here at our house with Eddie playing fun slight of hand tricks on the grandchildren....uh and the rest of us. Thank you in advance for your ongoing support... please don't stop. We need you. God has met every bill due, every need, and we are confident your obedience has made the difference!!!

You can make an online donation by clicking here:
- United States: 800-569-4825;
- Overseas: 713-466-4009
- You can mail checks or money orders to:
Eddie and Alice Smith Ministries
7710-T Cherry Park Dr, Ste 224
Houston, TX 77095. USA

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Friday, March 07, 2008

RESORUCE ~ Use Poetry to Set a Prayer Focus

'Rhymes and Reasons' book by Greg Asimakoupoulos published.

The Partial Observer is proud to present Greg's latest book, a collection of some of his best poems from his popular column, Rhymes & Reasons. A Great gift idea!

Don't miss this opportunity to support Greg by purchasing your copy through today.

More information about Rhymes & Reasons

"My friend Greg Asimakoupoulos communicates timeless truths through timely rhymes. His little poems pay big dividends — in wit, insight and inspiration."
Michael Medved, Nationally Syndicated Talk Radio Host

"Rarely does a game go by without my pastor and friend Greg Asimakoupoulos penning a poem that captures what occurred on the field in a fun and creative way. It always brings a smile to my face when I read his weekly Rhymes and Reasons."
Mike Holmgren, Head Coach of the Seattle Seahawks

"For more than two decades I have appreciated Greg Asimakoupoulos' creative way of stringing words together. The denomination I serve has been enriched by his unique contributions both in the pulpit and on paper."
Glenn R. Palmberg, President of The Evangelical Covenant Church

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