How Do You Write?

A precious reader asked me a thought provoking question…”how do I get focused before I write, so that I can write?” She shared with me how she struggled to know what to do and often finds the first 15 minutes or more to go to waste when she writes, as much as she loves to write. I always love getting questions like this, as they are truly good and thought-provoking questions!

What are the steps that I use when I write? How do I get focused? Well, honestly, the first thing that I do is pray, pray, and pray (and if I don’t, it shows!). Prayer is such a huge part in all of life, but especially if you are trying to share Yahweh’s heart with others, I think it needs to be an even more important aspect of our lives. So I pray not only for wisdom on what to write, but I pray for Him to put His words and heart within my own heart and mind (so that I can then share it via writing). There are times that I must admit, I don’t like what I feel Him leading me to write, but it’s often because it’s so covicting to myself! Ever have that happen? You think you’re just sharing something for someone else, and low and behold, He takes you on a totally different journey, one especially for you? :o) But I can’t stress enough to be willing to follow where He’s leading you…there is a reason, and you’ll really miss out on the blessing, if you don’t.

Another thing I do to get focused is, I generally won’t write articles around a lot of people, especially if it’s going to be thought-provoking post. If there’s a lot of activity around me, it’s often a lot harder to hear His voice, and be able to concentrate to write. So I usually try to write in a quiet place.

I want to say again, I pray. Even as I write, I pray. And if I get to a point where I am just struggling to know how to put down in words what is on my heart, I stop and pray. There are times that I have to take a break for more than a day…and that’s okay.

If I don’t feel Him leading me to write, I don’t force it. If I do feel Him sharing something with me to share with you, I have to write it down. Even if it scribbled notes on scrap pieces of paper. If I don’t, I usually will lose the truth He is trying to convey to me…so don’t wait! There have been times when He has gotten me get up in the middle of the night to write. And sadly, there have been times that I didn’t, and by morning, what He had been showing me the night before, was gone. :o( So be conscience of following His voice!

I pray this helps answer your question. :o)

Posted in Q and A's | 1 Comment

Waiting for my Beloved

Shalom girls!

I pray you all are doing well and joyous wherever Yahweh has you in life. Many of us are in the time of life that we have not yet been joined to our earthly spouse. We are waiting, and that can be hard. Learning to wait patiently is a good and necessary, though sometimes difficult, journey in my life. At times, the longing for my dear one wells up within me, making me feel a little overwhelmed and causing me to lift him up to our Heavenly Father and release him into His hands.

This time while we are unmarried is a precious time to draw nearer to Yahweh and focus solely on pleasing Him rather than trying to please our husband; it is a gift. Yes, I desire to be married to a Godly man someday and that is a good desire to have -as long as it does not become an area of discontentment because I begin to desire it more than where Yahweh desires for me to be.

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“But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord: But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife. There is difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit: but she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband.” – 1 Corinthians 7:32-34

“The unmarried woman cares for the things of Yahweh, that she may be holy both in body and spirit”. I love that piece of wisdom. It is such a good reminder of what I should be trying to become for Yahweh during this time, especially. At times, I will try to see things through Yahweh’s eyes so that I may see them in a better light; it is helpful. Honestly, I believe it displeases Him when I become distracted with marriage desires or any other type of earthly distractions instead of caring for His desires and pleasing Him foremost. It can be so easy to do!! When the time of marriage comes, I will be delighted to do His will in that area in life, also!!

Girls, this time during our unmarried years are precious! Yahweh desires for us to have a close walk with Him and this is a good time to give Him our full attention and try to please Him. Don’t waste these unmarried years being focused on pleasing men and what we think our husbands would be pleased with us being rather than being focused on becoming who Yahweh desires for us to be. He is ready to work in and mold our lives beautifully…if we only let Him do so with a willing heart, desiring to do His will.

“But godliness with contentment is great gain.” 1Timothy 6:6

 I can dwell freely on where Yahweh has me right now, rather than dwell on (and begin to long for) some-thing/one that He has not placed in my life yet. Giving our Heavenly Father my undivided attention helps not only deepen my relationship with Him, cause me to be stronger in Him, and clear my vision to better do His will, but, it also gives me contentment and joy in the place of life that He has me in. And in many, many ways it brings such freedom!!!

Proverbs 4:23, “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.”

I pray that when/if I am married, that my husband (both earthly and heavenly) will be able to tell me the same thins that Boaz said to Ruth in Ruth 3:10, “And he said, Blessed be thou of Yahweh, my daughter: for thou hast shewed more kindness in the latter end than at the beginning, inasmuch as thou followedst not young men, whether poor or rich.” Precious gals, protect and guard your hearts. It not only saves us from heartbreak and disappointments, saves us wholly for our “ishi” (“my man” -Hebrew), husband and Love, but it prepares us for marriage as we shape and mold our minds to be in all purity as we guard our hearts!

Father Yahweh, my Lord, thank-You that we can pour out our hearts before you, and come to your throne. Yahweh, there is no one like You in all the earth. Thank You that You care for us though You are God and we are tiny…even amidst our failures. Yahweh, You are truly magnificent! I pray you, guard our hearts…help us to be pure in everything, dwelling on the things that please You. Pour out your abundant love and protection on each one of Your children as we wait on You. Help us to mount up with wings as Eagles, to run where You’ve called us and not be weary, to walk and not faint, for truly, Yahweh, You are our hope and we can trustfully wait on You and Your perfect timing – though we do not always understand why You do what You do. Abba (Father), I ask this in Your precious Son’s name, Yahshua the Anointed. Amen

Know that you all will be in my prayers a lot in the near future. I know that this journey can be a constant battle and it can be difficult, but with our Heavenly Father Yahweh’s help, we can be triumphant and win this battle.

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Some things that I have found really helpful in staying pure and waiting for my husband-to-be is praying for him. This was hard at first. I wasn’t confident that he even existed, and it is hard to pray for someone that I doubt even exists! When I felt that Yahweh had laid it on my heart to pray for my husband daily, I didn’t know what to pray for or how I should reference him to Yahweh and my prayers were a little bit of a struggle. I often found myself a bit puzzled, as I tried to pray for him. Several years ago, a sister of mine told me that she was reading the Psalms and praying them for her husband-to-be and herself, only she was personalizing them.  Well, I don’t like reciting words for my prayers (with my simply personalizing) and that prospect didn’t settle well with me at the time. It was above me. :) But, as I read Yahweh’s word…the Psalms, prayers of Yahweh’s people, and see His desire for His people-in His word, they become my heartfelt desire, then they become my passionate prayer as well and it is so much easier to pray scripture!!! My prayers are becoming so much more “full”. I encourage you to seek Yahweh’s will, read His word, make your desire become His desire, and when you realize what His will is, then pray for it heartily.

At times, when I really want to be with, and talk to, my husband (to-be), I find it really helps to pray for him…really pray for him and “bathe” him in prayer…to turn my focus heavenward for him, instead of earthly. I can’t share my heart with him now as I would like to, but when those desires arise in me, it helps to not only pray for him heartily, but to write him a letter. I have a journal, that I have made specially for my husband-to-be, where I try to record my prayers, letters and love-notes for him there. Though I’ve never met him (at least, not as my husband-to-be), writing letters and prayers for him increase my love for him and reminds me that I am waiting for him -a specific God-chosen man…my husband-to-be…man-to-be…God’s child, that He has chosen for me to be a helpmeet to someday…and that is special! :)

Blessings;
Sarah

Posted in Godly Daughterhood | 3 Comments

Feminine Modesty Monday

Hello gals!

My beautiful sister Samantha has a pretty outfit to share with y’all. Here are some pictures of the beautiful gal who has been sharing what our heavenly Father has been laying on her heart lately!! I have been abundantly blessed in many ways, and in many areas of life, to be Samantha’s sister and to have her here with us at home still. Watching her and her love for Yahweh grow and abound is inspiring to say the least!

These pictures were taken last week, after a nightly snow fall. Yes, we still have snow although much of that fresh snowfall melted as the afternoon sun melted it that day!!  :) It has warmed up amazingly, though, and we have gotten sixty degree weather!!! It has been so warm, lately! :) I think that spring has really come to us in Maine. I know it doesn’t look it in these pictures, but truly, the snow has since melted so that we can now see over half of our yard and much of our pasture, the mud is drying on the road, our onions are poking their stems above the sparkling snow, and we have a fruit tree whose tiny white fuzzy buds are starting to bloom!!

I feel so invigorated when spring hits. The fresh new life…buds, warm beautiful weather, tiny babies being born, birds singing…ahh, those early morning songs when the sound of happy birds sing, calling back and forth to their family-to-be!!! What are some of your favorite blessings in spring? I’d enjoy hearing about them!!

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(Note from Samantha: I purchased the skirt, shirt, and scarf at the thrift store…both the skirt and shirt cost me between $2.99-4.99 and the scarf I got for $.99)

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The flexi that I am wearing is an extra-small Cameo Appearance, which you can purchase here for $15.

Blessings,
Sarah

You’re welcome to send in pictures of feminine and modest outfits to Samantha (at: samanthajoy@virtuousdaughters.com ) that you would like shared on Feminine Modesty Mondays. :) I enjoy receiving pictures and look forward to seeing some of y’all’s ways that you dress in a modest and feminine way! Pictures of all ages are welcome! Would you like to share cute little one’s outfits? I would really enjoy seeing how you dress your little girls modestly, yet femininely!!!

Posted in Godly Daughterhood, Modesty Monday | 7 Comments

Serving Like Yahshua Served: John 13:4-5, 12-17

John 13:4-5 “He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded.”

John 13:12-17 “So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you? Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you. 16 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him. If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.

Today’s passage brought me to the above passages in John 13. Have you ever thought about these verses before and how it applies to your life? The feet (okay, especially if you go barefoot or wear sandals on the dirt! ;o)) are usually the dirtiest part of your body. Yet, our Lord and Master got a towel, a basin filled with water, knelt down and washed his disciples feet…His servants feet! Why? As an example to show us that nothing and noone is too low for us! We are to serve one another, in love, just as He our Master, served us!

This really touched me. He taught us to serve with our whole heart…and to serve the least of these. Do we truly serve like this? When it comes to the “dirty” aspects of life, are we willing to lovingly, give them our all? Are we willing to stoop down and lovingly wash the feet of another, or are we just willing to wash their hands? Are we willing to go to another’s house and stoop down and clean their toilets or floors? Or just their sinks and dishes?

Are we willing to serve just the “wealthy”…or are we willing to serve the poor, those out of the streets who haven’t had a shower in over a month? Are we willing to stop by the ones on the street and invite them in for a hot meal or shower? Are we honestly willing to serve the least of these, my brethren? Or do we, when we see them (or smell them coming!), change to a different side of the street/isle in the store to avoid them?

What about our sick loved ones? Are we willing to tenderly care for them and clean up after them when they get sick? Sisters, are we truly serving with our whole heart, knowing nothing and noone is below us? Do we truly treat others better than ourselves? Every single person?

I know this passage was challenging for me! It’s easy for me to serve…most of the time. But where I struggle is not looking down on the dirty, unwashed, person. I see those living out on the street, who okay, haven’t showered or changed their clothes in quite awhile from the smells of things…and my first response is to put distance between us. I know I don’t treat them like I would another who was clean. It’s honestly repulsive to me. But is that what Yahshua taught us? He stooped down and served even these precious people with unconditional love.

It reminds me of when I had the absolute privilege of serving some prostitute girls, living out on the streets. I knew it would be hard, but I wanted to with all my heart, and I don’t regret a single minute with them! I knew the only way to help myself overcome this, was to jump in with both feet and truly serve them and love them, unconditionally, looking past everything. As I walked near that section of the city where the ministry was held, everything within me told me not to breathe. It was bad. Really bad. I can still smell it. But I remember asking Yahweh for grace and strength to keep going. They needed to know that they were loved with an unconditional love, too! I didn’t speak their language well at all, and so communication was exceedingly hard, but as I wondered how I could serve them, Yahweh brought to my mind that I do know how to massage. It’s a gift He’s given me and I just really felt like it would be one way of showing them His love, even though I couldn’t really talk to them. I thanked Yahweh for the idea and went to go talk to the leader about it.

I smile as I think back to their response. The lady in charge told me that she thought they’d love it and then translated for me, letting them know if they wanted a massage, that I would love to give them one. This ministry offered them a shower, a warm meal, and a place to sleep…off of the streets…even if only for a couple of hours. They had people there praying. People talking to them about the gospel, administering medical treatment, etc. They were truly loving them and it was beautiful! So beautiful!!! 

These girls ate it up! They loved it. I could tell that they truly looked forward to this day when they knew they’d be loved…truly loved…just for who they were! As I massaged one after the other, they would fall into a peaceful sleep or smile and thank me. It’s when I realized that most people probably turned their noses up to them, ignoring them, or looking down on them, avoiding them like the plague so to speak…like I often did when faced with such poverty and lifestyles. Yet, because of unconditional love, these girls are giving their lives to their Saviour and trying to change and come off the streets! Talk about conviction 101!

Sisters, do we show His love, as we should, to all those He has cross our paths? Do we truly serve like we should? Like He taught us? Are we willing to touch the lives of the poorest on earth? To stoop down and wash their feet? Could you imagine how this could touch their life?

And although for me personally, this is where the challenge comes into play…what about you? I know that even just washing someones feet, is often repulsive for some. Where do you struggle with serving? Where do you struggle serving someone as though you were the servant, they the Master? Is it cleaning a dirty toilet or barn? Or???

Pray and ask Yahweh to help you serve and love like His Son served and loved us and taught us to do the same! You will be so blessed if you do! Go past your comfort zone into the uncomfortable places! You will be so surprised at the rewards you will get when you do!

I can not tell you how much I miss these girls and how much I look forward to showing back up one day, smiling and telling them “I’m back…line up!”! Once I was able to put my comfort aside and think about them and only them, it was incredible! Yahweh taught me so much! And He continues to help me be willing to go beyond my comfort zones…which I’m learning is where He generally is! :o) So I challenge you…try it! :o) Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty for Him. He did for us!! :o)

Posted in Challenges, Choices, Godly Daughterhood, Intentional Living, Serving Others | 1 Comment

Have We Truly Laid Our Life Down That We May Live?

Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal. If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour. Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour. Father, glorify thy name…” John 12:24-28a

Shalom again, my precious sisters!

This morning found me once again pondering these words of Yahshua’s in John chapter 12 and somehow, although I known I have written about it before, I just felt like Yahweh laid it upon my heart that I needed to write about it again. It seems to be a passage that He has had me personally dwelling upon a lot lately. What does it mean to die to oneself? What does it mean to hate ones life, and thus gain it for eternity? What does it truly mean to follow and serve Him, and thus have our heavenly Father, honour us?

I know precious sisters, that I have written a lot about spreading the gospel lately, but in truth, what is more important this side of heaven, than to serve and obey Yahshua, and spread the good news that He has truly come…that He truly is the Messiah and the Son of the living God? I look back upon my own life not too many years ago…I see the struggle that I had. I know what it’s like to live in the dark and to be redeemed and saved…I remember like it was yesterday when through tears streaming down my face, I looked into the beloved eyes of my praying mother and asked her “Mama, why did I fight Him for so long?!” I went from toilmoil to total peace…a peace that truly did pass all understanding, in the blink of an eye! I went from fighting, to being surrendered, and knowing just how much my Saviour loved me! He gave me that lifeline that I so desperately needed! And He’s told us to go and spread the good news of who He is and what He has done for us…and yet more than ever, I am seeing people hold back from doing it…why?

Sisters, is it because we are afraid we may lose our life if we did? We hear all the time about those who are being killed for their faith. It doesn’t take much to look around us and see the hundreds falling and dying by the sword. And truly, if the only meaning we had belonged to us here on earth, we would have something to fear! If life ceased after our time here on earth, yeah, I could see why people would fear dying. But as born again believers, we know the truth! We know it isn’t the end! It is just the beginning! So why are we living our life as though it is the end? Why are we more concerned about what others think, than what our Saviour thinks? Why are we so consumed with pleasures of this life, than of glorifying our Father? Why are we more concerned with fitting in with the world, than shining His light to the world?

My precious sisters, we have that Lifeline and Anchor that they need! We have the ability to help others find the way, see and understand who our Messiah and King is…who THEIR Messiah and King is, so what is holding us back? Fear? Fear of what? What they could do to our bodies? Sisters, if we are already dead, what could they possibly do to us? I love how Yahshua tells us that unless we hate our life and lose it, we will never gain it. It is only by being willing to lay it down, will we ever be truly free to bear much fruit in His Kingdom! We will never bear much fruit until we are willing to truly lose our life and to love Him more than our life! Until we are willing to care less about life here on earth, and more about eternity and simply caring about being in the center of His will and being obedient to Him, we truly will not be able to bear much fruit at all…because when it comes between having to choose, we will choose pleasure over loving the soul of another. We will say it isn’t worth giving up our safety, our comforts, our pleasures. For what? Someone we don’t even know? Why would we want to?

But sisters, when we see things in light of eternity, everything changes. Instead we see a world of people that our Messiah loves and gave His life for. We see “us” and who we were before He saved us, in them. We see a hurting world who needs to know the love of One who loves them more than life itself! We realize that our life won’t end, even if our time comes, when we go home to be with Him. But what is more important…us being willing to love like He loved, even at the cost of being brutally killed, so that another can have eternal life? Or us saving our life, living in the comforts and pleasures that this world has to offer, while another is doomed to spend eternity in hell, simply because we chose pleasure rather than obedience? This life here on earth is nothing. It’s a vapor which quickly passes away. What is important, is where we will spend, and where the world will spend, eternity!

So will you allow Yahweh to use your life? Will you allow Him to honour you, as you are obedient to Him, come what may? Will you be willing to lay your life down, so that others may know life? Eternal life? Will we be willing, at all costs, to bring glory to His name? He can not use us if we are holding onto this life and what this life has to offer! He can only use a willing and broken vessel…one that He can mold for His service. Will you be that vessel unto honour?

Sisters, I’m not saying you have to be on a foreign mission field. It starts here at home, in your communities, in your churches, in your families…in your heart. You have been bought with the highest price anyone could pay…the blood of the Messiah! Will you live your life sold out for Him? To Him? To live more concerned about Him, His ways, His word, than yourself and the comforts around you? How I pray that each one of us will come to a place in our lives where we truly surrender our all to His control, His keeping! For until we truly die, we won’t be able to live. Nor will we be able to serve Him with our whole heart, soul, strength and mind!

Posted in Challenges, Conviction, Eternal, Faith, Godly Daughterhood, Intentional Living, Serving Yahweh | 4 Comments

Lessons from John 11 – Part 2

With everything happening with ISIS and the extremist, this passage really stuck out to me. As I was down serving this past month amongst some retired missionaries, one was telling about their children and grandchildren who live in a very heated area where ISIS is very active right now. As they were sharing the story with us, one of the ladies at the table asked something to the extent of “aren’t they afraid?” or “aren’t you afraid?” Then asked “how do they live day to day under such pressure?” I love what their parents said “They know this is where God has led them, so they just don’t allow themselves to dwell on it”. The truth is, if you are in the center of Yahweh’s will, what could be safer than that? That was what they were trying to convey to us all. Yes, they understood the dangers of where they were, but they chose to turn those concerns into prayers for their children and grandchildren, knowing that they were and are in the center of Yahweh’s will. If they died while serving, they died while serving…that wasn’t the issue or the question we should have.

So when I read this passage and listened to Yahshua’s words, it really hit home to me. Reading this chapter, verses 49-54 seemed to tie into verses 25-26. Yahshua is talking to Martha and tells us her “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die…” fast forwarding to the end of the chapter and we see that the Pharisees are trying to kill Yahshua and in verse 54 says “Yahshua therefore walked no more openly among the Jews:”. So how does this apply to us when living our lives in the face of “danger”?

Terrorist are ones who cause terror. Their goal is to wipe the Jews and believers off the face of the earth. We know that. They terrorize people to try to get them to convert (because of fear). But sisters, if we are truly believers, are we supposed to fear those who can kill or destroy our bodies? Why do believers fear death? We know that we won’t die! We just go from breathing here on earth, to breathing in the presence of our King! It’s not death…it’s a promotion! So why do we fear death? Yes, we can see from the end of the chapter that we are to be careful…but being careful versus fearful, is two drastically different things! Yahshua taught us to be careful, He never taught us to be fearful! And He taught us obedience…come what may. He never promised us an easy life or even safety in the sense that we often think of it.

Why do I share this with you? Because if you could simply grasp this truth, you would not be concerned with what or where your Master sends you! You could, in all boldness, proclaim His gospel anywhere and everywhere! For you’d realize and understand that you are alive and will always be alive…in Him! The question isn’t to be concerned about those around you and what they could do to your bodies…as it is that you should be really concerned about being in the center of Yahshua’s will! If you are in the center of His will, you have absolutely NOTHING in the world to be concerned or fearful about! He’s not promising a life of ease, nor is He promising you that nothing will happen to your body. Look at the disciples and prophets lives. They teach us something completely different. But the difference was, they allowed Yahshua to use their vessels to bring Him glory and honor and they didn’t hide His light under a bushel.

The same should hold true for us as believers. We shouldn’t be consumed with fear, and allowing those trying to terrorize us, to be able to do just that…and thus paralyze us! But we need to walk in the truth of scripture…knowing that they can not touch our souls…and that we MUST be obedient to the Father!

It’s so freeing when you think about it! I love the scripture verse that says something to the extent of “when you lose your life, you gain it”. For you truly do! When you lose the fear of dying, knowing that it isn’t something to fear at all, then what can man do to you? Death loses its sting and becomes for the believer, a victory instead! We are in a war, my sisters. We need to pray for the strength and protection of our brethren, but don’t mourn or question Yahweh for calling them (or you!) home because they (or you) were faithful to His calling!

May it only strengthen us to be willing to take a stand for righteousness and put our all to the work that He has called us to do…and be anxious over nothing, but in prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, make our requests known to God. May we stand and boldly say “I fear not what man can do unto me” but instead say “I do fear in not being obedient to the Father and what He has called me to do”! Notice that the Pharisees never even questioned Yahshua’s obedience. They knew He’d be obedient and come to Jerusalem to keep the feast, regardless. Does the enemy know that you will be obedient, come what may, too? Is this also what you are known for? I pray that it is, or atleast will be, if it isn’t!

Posted in Faith, Godly Daughterhood, Trusting God | Leave a comment

Lessons from John 11 – Part 1

This mornings devotions was one of those really thought provoking passages. I had gotten away from reading John while I was away, needing to spend more times in the Psalms, but lately I’ve begun to go through it again and wow! How I love Yahweh’s Word!!!

Have you ever thought about the lessons within John 11? It starts off with Yahshua being summoned because Lazarus was sick. Yahshua then tells His disciples that He would raise him from the dead. This, mind you, was before He was suppose to have realized he was even dead! He just got word that Lazarus was sick…not dead. Yet, Yahshua held back a couple of days, knowing what would take place.

Let me ask you a question. Did this change who Yahshua was and is? Did His waiting to answer their prayer, change who our God is?

When Yahshua goes to Martha and Mary, they tell Him that Lazarus is dead. In fact, he had been dead and burried for four days. What struck me was the fact that Yahshua wept and groaned within His spirit when He heard their cries…but I don’t think it was just their weeping that brought Him to tears, but their words. Listen to what Mary (or Mariam) said. Verse 33 goes on to say “Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. When Yahshua saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping, which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled.” But going onto verse 37…”And some of them said, “Could not this man, which opened the eyes of the blind, have caused that even this man should not have died?” Look at Yahshua’s response to these thoughts “Yahshua therefore groaning in himself cometh to the grave…”

In the past, I have heard people say that the reason that Yahshua wept was because of his love for Lazarus and the girls. And yes, I know Yahshua loved them! But was that truly the reason behind him groaning, being troubled, and weeping? Or was it something far greater than that? Was it because they had doubted him in the first place? Was He more concerned with their heart and minds, than He was with their grief? They first believed Him and that He could heal, which is why they sent for Him. But then something happened. Because He delayed His coming to them, they started to doubt.

Thinking about this in terms of what I’ve been sharing, it made me stop and ponder what exactly was the cause of his grief and I have to wonder that it wasn’t because of their lack of praying through, believing, and trusting Him, instead of simply relying on the circumstances. Our God is who He is, yesterday, today, and forever! Circumstances should not alter how we think and believe about Yahshua! Yahshua planned on raising Him from the dead even before He heard He was dead. That didn’t change. What changed was the fact that they thought He was too late and couldn’t or thought that He wouldn’t. They lost their trust and belief in Him and His ability.

I love this quote by Bill Thrasher “Prayer is not attempting to get our will done in heaven, but His will done on earth.” Prayer isn’t to get our own way. It isn’t to make something happen. It is how we can join hands with God and accomplish what He wants to accomplish! It is coming along side with His will.

The other thing that really stuck out to me was the steps that Yahshua took. He first thanked the Father for hearing Him (even before He asked), then He acknowledged that He always heard His prayers, then He asked. Do we thank, acknowledge, and then ask?

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Prayer and What I Have Been Learning About It – Part 3

This brings me to something that really stuck out to me. I know I’ve said this before, but it stands repeating, I guess. :o) Remember how I shared with you about Esther calling the people to pray before going before the king and how it really showed me how important prayer was? Something that this book showed me was how much Yahshua taught us about prayer, by when and how He prayed. Listen to this.

Yahshua prayed before the important events and decisions of his own life – Luke 6:12-13 “And it came to pass in those days, that he (Yahshua) went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also he named apostles;”

Yahshua prayed after significant achievements of his life – Matthew 14:22-23 “And straightway Yahshua constrained his disciples to get into a ship, and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away. And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone.”

Yahshua prayed when life was unusually busyMark 1:35 “And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.”

Yahshua prayed when he was overwhelmed with needMatthew 9:35-38 “And Yahshua went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd. Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest.”

If this was true for Yahshua, how much more so, should it be true of our own lives? Of my own life? Again, I can’t tell you how much this book has impacted my life…nor everything that has happened in the past month/months. It is so hard for me to write it words what is on my heart, but I pray with all my heart that even amongst the scrambled thoughts and words, you will come away with feeling atleast in part, what I am trying to relay. Sisters, prayer shouldn’t be a side dish of our life. It should be the main course! This is how we share our hearts with God and this is how He shares His heart with us! This is how the enemy looses its hold and grip upon our lives and the lives around us! Just as a husband and wife need to communicate, so should we with Yahweh! We say we understand that we are in a spiritual battle, but if we did, than why do we (why do I!) take this so lightly?! Why have I taken it so lightly in the past? If it’s a spiritual battle, shouldn’t we start fighting down upon our knees, not standing? I just can’t help but wonder what could happen if we truly humbled ourselves and fell upon our knees in prayer, not only for those around us, but for ourselves, as well! There is so much work that must be done, but how can we possibly get it done, if we don’t first go down upon our knees and, as the scripture says, not let Yahweh rest until He answers? It’s not nagging Him, this is what brings Him joy and delight! He longs to feel us drawing so close to Him and trusting Him in such a way! And whatever you do, make sure you enter His courts with thanksgiving and praise for all He has done!

I also wanted to share something else with you. I know you know that Esther called the nation to pray and fast. But did you also know that when America was on the verge of a war with France, President John Adams commanded a fast on May 9, 1798? Or that in 1815 James Madison issued a proclamation for the nation to fast? Or that Abraham Lincoln, on three different occasions in his administration, also proclaimed a national fast? We also know that so many of the godly men and women before our generation fasted and prayed and saw Yahweh work mightily! I can’t help but wonder if the fact that we see so little happening (so little power in a good sense…we certainly see the evil taking over and accomplishing much!) in our generation, is because we have forgotten how to fight the enemy down upon our knees, beseeching Yahweh’s strength and might and wisdom?

I know I could go on and on…I know I’ve already gone on long enough. But please, dear precious sisters, lets get down upon our knees and really seek the face of our God! Let’s begin to pray like we have never prayed before! While you’re at it, keep track as to what Yahweh lays upon your heart to pray, so that you can later go over it’s pages and see just how He has answered the prayers of your heart! It will be totally amazing to behold! I have recently begun to do this and it has only spurred me on to go back to writing down what He has had me praying, what He has shown me through scripture, etc. I have sadly kind of gotten away from keeping a spiritual journal, but after going back over last years, I decided that I really needed to be more faithful in this area of my life. If anything else, because it really shows me that Yahweh is at work, He does hear my prayers, and He does answer them! And how can I remember what He has done in the past, so that I know what He will continue to do in the future, if I don’t write it down so I can remember it? Atleast in part? I love how the kings in scripture wrote things down and then went back over the events that happened. It’s such a beautiful picture and one that I must be more faithful in! What about you? What has Yahweh been showing you lately? Do you have a way that has worked out well for you, with keeping track of prayers and answered prayers? I’d love to hear more about where Yahweh has you in regards to praying, my sisters! Also, I know I love praying the scriptures. I’d love love love to hear some wonderful passages of scripture that you have prayed! Let’s help each other out and share in this wonderful journey together, shall we? :o)

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Prayer and What I Have Been Learning About It – Part 2

This brings me to another aspect that I have always struggled with. I HATE begging! I don’t want to be seen as someone who nags!! I’m the type of person who doesn’t even relish in asking. I’d rather be asked, then be the one to ask. Yet, what I am learning is, Yahweh delights in hearing my heart. I read a verse today that, I must admit, shot down my whole thought process! I always struggled with and wondered if, it was right to keep asking Yahweh for the same thing? Was that not really bothersome to Him? I mean, was I to ask once, then sit back and see if He answered? Or was I to keep to my knees, and keep beseeching Him until He answered? I thought of Hannah who beseeched Yahweh with tears and fasting. I thought of Esther who asked her people to go to their knees in prayer and fasting for three days! Not to mention Daniel who prayed for 21 days! I realized as I began to meditate upon what scripture taught, that I had indeed missed something huge! And I believe with all my heart, something so profound!

This is why when I read this verse, it made me totally stop and sit back and take a deep breath. As many times as I have read scripture, I never ever remember seeing it (I mean I saw it, but never applied it to prayer). It is located in Isaiah 62:6-7 and reads as follows “I have set watchmen upon thy walls, O Jerusalem, which shall never hold their peace day nor night: ye that make mention of Yahweh, keep not silence, And give him (Yhwh) no rest, till he establish, and till he make Jerusalem a praise in the earth.”

Sisters, do you see this?! Yahweh is telling us that He has set us as a watchmen, which we are not to hold our peace day nor night, we are NOT to keep silent, and we are not to give Him rest, until He does exactly as He tells us He will do! We are to keep praying, until it happens!

Yes, I realize that this is Jerusalem He is talking about and I believe that we must be in prayer day and night about this, literally! But, I believe that this can certainly apply to all areas of our life, when it comes to instruction on how to pray through! If we are commanded to not give Him rest until He brings it to pass, how much are we to keep praying and not to keep silent, until He answers the other prayers of our hearts? Oh, yes! We must be careful to pray His will! But this showed me that like Yahweh tells us in Psalms and Proverbs, He truly does delight in hearing and answering our prayers, but there are going to be times when it will take generations to answer those prayers, but no matter how long it takes, we are still to pray through until our God calls us home!

Again, I’m being totally open and honest with you, my sisters. This has truly been a struggle that I have had for years. There are times when it has been easier, and times when the struggle seems overwhelming! But I think the reason that I have struggle so much with it, is because I have not understood what scripture has taught us concerning prayer. For if I did, I think I would have given a much greater amount and urgency of my life to this very important aspect of my walk! I would have taken prayer requests and struggles that people were having, much more seriously, and besought the very gates of Heaven on their behalf…and on the behalf of myself.

But quite frankly, what I have learned this month (and the past few months) more than ever before is, when a believer is going through a trial, they can’t necessarily beseech Yahweh, like those who aren’t going through it. It can be so intense at times, so completely envolving oneself and their energy, that I think we more or less really depend on others to carry us through it, via their own prayers of intercession on our behalf. Atleast I know that’s how I felt this past month and in the months previously. Yes, I think we need to certainly pray, too! I’m not trying to say that we shouldn’t. I guess what I’m trying to convey with you is the importance to, as a body of believers, to lift up the other members in prayer, too, and not be so consumed with our own daily needs that we forget to bathe others in prayer, too. If Yahweh wakes you up, or keeps you awake, and you feel a burden to pray (or even if you don’t understand that burden or alertness), I can’t beg you enough to get down on your knees and pray! Ask Yahweh why He’s awaken you and how you can pray, for He knows! Don’t ignore the spirit’s promptings. For I can not tell you how richly blessed I have been because of the obedience of another to pray…even in the middle of the night…for I and those I was with, truly did need prayer at that exact moment! We needed someone intercessing for us when we couldn’t. Yes, Yahweh hears our one word prayers for help and wisdom…but how much more does He long to hear the prayers for another who is in need? Talk about the greatest gift of love we can offer another!

Last month I got to be so totally blessed to serve with some precious believers and retired missionaries. It was the most incredible time I have had in a while! But one thing they have taught me, probably more than anything else was, the importance of prayer. They gather in groups daily, to pray. They told me that they might be retired, but that doesn’t mean they can’t do what they can…and bathing the other younger missionaries in prayer and believers who are being persecuted, is one thing that they can still do and will do! They knew that they needed prayers while on the field, and they know that these others, also needed someone to bathe them in prayer, too. And throughout the day I would see aged grandfathers, bowed in prayer together. I would walk down the stairs to the dining hall where we were staying early in the morning to get my coffee, and I absolutely loved the sight I walked into each day! It was to see these precious aged grandmothers and saints, reading the word together and praying together! This was the assisted living building. The houses which stood around us, also gathered in prayer with each other. Prayer was taken extremely seriously there. They were true intercessors and I will forever hold those sights dear to my own heart! And what an example they set for us younger ones!

It brings to my mind two quotes I read today. S. D. Gordon said, “The greatest thing one can do for God and for man is to pray. You can do more than pray after you have prayed, but you cannot do more than pray until you have prayed. Prayer is striking the winning blow; and service is gathering up the result.” and Corrie Ten Boom said, “The devil smiles when we make plans. He laughs when we get busy. But he trembles when we pray, especially when we pray together.” Talk about two powerful quotes! But they are SO true!!!

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Prayer and What I Have Been Learning About It – Part 1

As you know from previous articles, Yahweh has been teaching me a great deal on the importance and power of Prayer. As I sit here thinking over all He has taught me this past month especially, I must admit, I’m in awe. I always knew I was to pray, it wasn’t that. I may not have known how He wanted me to pray at times, but I always knew I was suppose to. But where I struggled was in realizing the power of prayer and the importance of prayer! Yahweh doesn’t command us to pray for naught! And Satan doesn’t try to get us to ignore prayer, for naught! There is a reason that he trembles and fights so very hard, when we pray!

Last month, while I was serving down south, I borrowed a book (which I now own) called “A Journey to Victorious Praying…Finding Discipline and Delight in Your Prayer Life” by Bill Thrasher. I had never even heard of him before, but the title drew me to pick it up, and when I saw that my precious older friend, Elisabeth Elliot (now Elisabeth Gren) recommended it, I immediately decided that I wanted to read it. This is what she said about it “As a born worry wart, like my father, I have had to learn to seek his face to find strength. I wholeheartily agree with Dr. Thrasher that, ‘in God’s kindness he instructs us how to process our anxiety’. I pray that this book blesses many.” I also knew I needed more help in this area of my life, so I began to read it, and wow! I must admit, I haven’t been disappointed at all with this book. It has been so challenging in many ways, eye opening, and encouraging as I try to become the prayer warrior I know Yahweh has called me to be. And since I wasn’t able to finish it while serving down yonder, I really felt like I needed to buy it so that I could. Yes, it’s $8.99 on Amazon…but it’s truly worth every penny, atleast I have thought so! :)

But, onto what He has taught me and some of the ways He has blessed me through it. I hope in sharing this, it will richly bless your own lives.

For weeks before I left, I really felt like Yahweh told me to wake at midnight and pray for my beloved husband, and those He also layed on my heart. I wasn’t sure why that particular time, but I knew for some reason, I needed to. For myself, I really felt like I was to pray fand intercede for him (as well as the others He brought to my mind) for 30 minutes. There were times when I will admit, it was hard to convince myself to wake and leave my bed…but I knew that it would be hard ahead of time, as I knew that Satan was going to try to hinder this time. And I soon found that I so looked forward to that time and was sad to see it come to a close and was time for me to return to my bed.

But, then something happened and this is what I want to write about. I share only what I did, because it just amazes me how mysteriously Yahweh works at times! Little did I ever realize back then, what I would need shortly after and it truly humbled me! It began the weeks following my time serving down south. I was serving an elderly precious friend and her husband and it became obvious that midnight was going to be a time that those I was serving, as well as myself, was going to need to be bathed in prayer! It just seemed that it was when Satan attacked us the most. And emotionally, it was a battle ground for me, as I struggled with not knowing what the future may hold and it bringing back to my mind so many memories of the past when I served another family, which I wasn’t expecting at all. I just felt so helpless and so weak as we wondered what each minute and each day, would bring our way.

But then God’s people started praying. It wasn’t the end. It was just the beginning! The nights, instead of being dreaded, became a place that I felt so secure, so peaceful, and so full of strength in. I knew that no matter what happened, I wasn’t alone. Yahweh was right there with us. And we truly began to see Yahweh working on our behalf…and to say it was exciting, was an understatement!

But it didn’t stop there. Each night, the girl serving with me and I , and also whoever might be spending the nights with us, found ourselves in prayer together. It was a time that we drew close to Yahweh and close to each other as we shared our hearts in prayer and praise! And I realized more than ever before, the importance and power of prayer! The importance of God’s people getting on their knees for others, bathing them in prayer, beseeching the throne of Yahweh on their behalf!! And the power of it…as Yahweh answered one prayer after another! It was so amazing, so awe inspiring, so wonderful! But it left me so humbled and convicted, as I began to realize that I should have been praying like this, for so many, many years!

Thoughts began to flood my mind. Was the reason that we were accomplishing so little in the Kingdom of Yahweh, because we lacked being humble and getting upon our knees in prayer? Was Yahweh waiting for us to take the first step? Remember the passage in scripture when the angle was disbatched, but it took him 21 days to break through and get to Daniel? Yet, Yahweh heard and began to answer his prayer from the first day…but can you imagine if Daniel stopped praying? Would the angel have ever gotten to him? (Daniel 10:12-13 Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words. 13 But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia.)

It also reminded me about how we don’t fight against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers of darkness! (Ephesians 6:12 says, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”)

So why is it that we (I) seldom really and truly beseech Yahweh on our (my) knees? Is it because we (I) truly don’t believe there is power in prayer? Is it that we (I) think our (my) prayers are not important to Him? For His word teaches us just the opposite! Proverbs 15:8 says, “… but the prayer of the upright is his delight.” Do we think that He doesn’t hear our prayers? Proverbs 15:29 says “Yahweh is far from the wicked: but he heareth the prayer of the righteous.” Psalms 66:19-20 says “But verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer. Blessed be God, which hath not turned away my prayer, nor his mercy from me.” Again we can see in Psalms 6:9 “Yahweh hath heard my supplication; Yahweh will receive my prayer.” I love how David puts it in Psalms 143:1 “A Psalm of David. Hear my prayer, Yahweh, give ear to my supplications: in thy faithfulness answer me, and in thy righteousness.” and again Psalms 141:2 “Let my prayer be set forth before thee as incense; and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.”

I realized for my own life, one of the reasons that I have truly not understood the power of prayer, was because I had allowed Satan to convince me in the past that it didn’t really matter…Yahweh was in control anyhow. Sure, I prayed. But certainly not as much or as faithful as I should have been! This is how, I believe, we go to battle with the powers of darkness! It’s upon our knees! This is how we receive breakthroughs in our lives. We need to get past the thinking, my precious sisters, that our God is not one of Might and Strength…but we must begin to realize that He DELIGHTS in, yes, YOUR (OUR) prayers! He hears our prayers. He answers our prayers! But are we willing to pray, if need be, for 21 days as Yahweh disbatches His angels on behalf of us? Will we lose hope and quit a little short of victory? What if His answer is only minutes away? Will we not receive, because we stopped asking?

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