Friday, June 23, 2017

The Importance of Prayer

Pray, Prayer, Humility, Humiler

Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. 1Peter 5:6-7 (ESV)

            When we accept Jesus as our LORD, believers tell us we are to pray to God. A ‘babe in Christ’ wonders why this is so important.

            We draw closer to God when we pray. If we find ourselves feeling alone in a circumstance. All we have to do is enter God’s presence. When a person accepts Christ, that person may or may not come from a Christian family. If they do, they seem to find it easier to navigate through life. If they don’t, they have to learn more about the LORD through the church, through Sunday school, and through prayer.

          We learn to rely on Him in times of distress. Due to our humanity, we will experience stressful events. A dear friend and her husband recently spent most of a week at his sister’s caring for that sister and her husband, who was in the process of going to be with Jesus. Prayer got them through. After the brother-in-law passed, my friend told us that she was very thankful that God used her and her husband during that time.

          We seek His guidance when we are doing things we have not done before. When I began again to write, all the things that presented themselves were new to me. Every time something different came my way I met by voicing, “I haven’t done that before. . .” and then finished my thought. I learned I had to pray for His guidance in order to receive thoughts on which to write. As I sit here typing this essay, I approach a new phase of writing for the LORD, that of published author. I have had to consider factors that I never had to think about before. Without God and people praying for me, I would be a very nervous woman.

         We seek His protection over our loved ones when they travel. Our son, a confirmed bachelor, recently went on vacation. His destination was a lake three states away. He arrived a day earlier than he thought. He camped three nights. On the fourth day, he had hired a guide to take him fishing on a neighboring lake. He tent camps. On that third night, it rained, drenching everything. On that fourth day, he called me and said he was on his way back to his home. I had prayed for travel mercies for him. I had also prayed for God to guide him while he was so far from home.
One lesson we all have to learn is that God answers prayer according to His plans, not ours. When we pray, we can only ask what is in our hearts. He is in control and will answer as He sees fit.

Prayer: Lord God, please help us to learn that we can trust you when we pray. Help us to realize that You will answer our requests in Your way and in Your time. We will give You the praise. In the name of Jesus, we pray. AMEN

        I will be taking a break from blogging to do work for Vacation Bible School. Also, to get my writing area better organized, and to proofread my book when it comes in the mail. I will be back here on July 10th.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Prayers Requested

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            I realize I have not been forthcoming about something with you. I didn’t mean to keep a secret from all of you. I recently made reference to a book I have been writing and one of my readers commented that she didn’t know about it. Please forgive me for being so quiet about it.
        Today, I will interview myself about this new venture. That way you all will know how to pray for me.

Quiet Spirit: Tell us about your new book.

Cecelia Lester: “Times of Trouble Bring Rays of Joy” is a collection of 60 devotions that encompass six basic areas of concern Christians have. These concerns can occur in the hearts of long-time believers as well as those new to the faith.

Q.S.: Who did you write this book for?

C.L.: I wrote this book for men and women who have questions about where they are in their walk with God. People who are newly retired or recent empty-nesters.

Q.S.: What is your overall theme?

C.L.: My overall theme is to get close to God, talk to him. Observe our world and, again, talk to Him about what we as individuals do.

Q.S.: What does the title “Times of Trouble Bring Rays of Joy” mean?

C.L.: When we have times that seem to get the best of us, we have to look for the hope, even if it’s a tiny sliver. When we cling to that hope, we eventually find God places joy in our hearts.

Q.S.: How did you go about putting together this book?

C.L.: At the beginning of 2015, I felt I wasn’t quite doing what God wanted me to do. Days seemed to slip away from me. I started journaling. I wrote for six months on the themes of Time Management, Strength, Humility, Compassion and Mercy, Faith, and Peace. God, in His mysterious ways. saw to it that I had to practice humility, faith, and peace when I had an accident and suffered a severe injury to my right ankle. I was on bed rest in a rehab center for eight weeks. I was in that facility for three months.

Q.S.:  Tell us about the Illustrations at the beginning of each section.

C.L.: I needed something to show the different sections of the book. I tried taking some photos but they I didn’t have enough skill to do them attractively. I wanted each one to be distinctive. When I found them, I liked them. I believe each of the illustrations conveys a message about the theme of each devotion in its section.

Q.S.: What do you think people mean if they call your book non-typical?

C.L.: At the end of each devotional passage, I included up to three questions that relate to the message in that reading. Also, I placed lines for the reader to record his or her answer. These questions are to make a person think about what the message said and apply it to his or her life if that is possible.

Q.S.: What is the value of a book like “Times of Trouble Bring Rays of Joy?”

C.L.: It is easily read. It is small enough to fit in a purse or a small tote bag. The messages are short and to the point. This book can be easily incorporated into a person’s daily devotions, along with his or her Bible reading.

Q.S.: Do you have a release date for this book?

C.L.: Yet this summer. It will be in print and Kindle formats. I will have more information when it is released

Q.S.: Thank you for sharing with us. We look forward to the release of “Times of Trouble Bring Rays of Joy”

Fear, Courage: God Is With Us  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD ...