Author Archives: possesshispromises

Pray the Scriptures when life hurts … A Review

Pray the Scriptures When Life Hurts by Kevin Johnson

I first heard of “praying the Scriptures” from a man who was comforting a woman in pain with very little hope. He showed her how to pray through Psalm 23. I then practiced praying the Psalms. I had not thought of praying the rest of the Bible, until I read Kevin Johnson’s book, Pray the Scriptures when life hurts: Experience hope and healing through the power of God’s Word.

Johnson walks readers through nine key Scriptures as he teaches the reader to pray the Scriptures to regain hope and healing. Along the path, he pauses to reveal the agony of his depression and the pain of his neurological challenges. Like David in the Psalms, he describes his pain and depression, and then he turns his eyes on the greatness of God, and he finds hope.

I appreciate his candor in sharing his thoughts and his emotions during his suffering. I have experienced similar thoughts and pain.

“Scripture teaches us to offer up not only our agony and questioning but also our surrender … When we allow Scripture to lead us to a breadth of prayers, we begin to be filled with God’s fresh life.”

Johnson begins the book with nightmares and agony and closes with peace and hope.

Scripture heads the brief chapters; reflections follow;  Johnson’s challenges unfold, leading to God’s all-sufficiency and Johnson’s perseverance. The reader is then prompted to read one or two verses and pray using prompts. The reader repeats the process until the entire passage of Scripture is prayed through. The last section of the chapter includes questions to reflect upon, pray about, and discuss with others.

This book is a great tool for a reader to use alone, and it would be an even greater resource in a small group Bible Study.

About the author.
Read Chapter One.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers, a division of Baker Publishing Group, for my honest review.

My prayer

Father, thank You for Kevin Johnson’s courage in writing this book. Bless his readers with the knowledge of Your presence in their lives as You lead them by the hand through their pain and suffering. I pray for Kevin Johnson, Father, You know the great and precious promises You have in store for him. Pour them out on him abundantly. Thank You.

4 years healed … 4 years of grace

Eagle in Alaska

Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
His understanding is unsearchable.

He gives power to the faint,
and to him who has no might He increases strength.

Even youths shall faint and be weary,
and young men shall fall exhausted;

but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:28-31

Today marks the fourth anniversary of the Lord’s healing. On November 21, 2010, the Lord miraculously healed me of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

I had come to the end of what I could do for myself and what the doctors could do. I had even come to the end of pleading for healing. My desire had changed … I wanted more of God.

My Father honored that desire for more of Him. That would have been enough, but He had more in store for me;  He healed me.

My LORD took this pain-stricken, exhausted woman who had come to the conclusion that she would honor God from her bed and healed her. Healed her for a purpose … to live the story of His great grace and love, to proclaim His goodness and works in today’s world.

I recently participated in the Step Out Walk to Stop Diabetes. I ran part of the walk. A nurse who had prayed with me during my pain and suffering saw me run and marveled. I hadn’t seen her while I was running, but a week later, she told me how much that had meant to her.

My prayer.

Father, You renewed my strength. You have enabled me to soar to new heights and empowered me to swoop down into new depths with You. With You, I will not grow weary or faint. In Your grace, I have been healed for Your work. Thank You for Your grace, love, and power.

Are you waiting on the Lord?

 

 

Jesus wept

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“Where have you laid him?” They *said to Him, “Lord, come and see.”

Jesus wept.

So the Jews were saying, “See how He loved him!” John 11:34-36

 

 

 

 

 

Jesus knew that his beloved friend, Lazarus, was sick. Lazarus’ sisters, Mary and Martha, sent word to Jesus to come to them. But He stayed two days longer where He was, and then walked to Bethany.

When Jesus arrived, Lazarus had been in the tomb for four days.

Jesus wept.

Why was He weeping? He knew that He was going to raise Lazarus from the dead.

He had told His disciples that the outcome would be

… for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified by it.” John 11:4

Why am I crying?

Mama’s in heaven.

There’s no pain in heaven.

Daddy’s in heaven.

Mama met her mother; Mama’s biological mother died giving her birth.

I’m happy she’s in heaven.

Why am I crying?

I’m crying for her suffering.

I’m crying for my family.

I’m crying for her caregivers.

I’m crying for myself.

I’ll miss her.

Why did Jesus weep?

I know that death is the result of sin.

I know that Jesus came to pay the price of our sins, death on the cross.

I know that Jesus is fully man and fully God.

I know that Jesus is compassionate and loves the world.

I know that Jesus loved Lazarus.

I know that Jesus loves Mama.

I know that Jesus loves me.

I know that God wept.

My prayer

Jesus, I don’t understand these emotions. I am happy that Mama is in heaven; yet, I’m weeping. Thank You for including this small verse in Your Word. Jesus, I love You.

Life with a Capital L … A review

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Matt Heard, senior pastor of Woodmen Valley Chapel in Colorado Springs, has given Christians a gift with a capital “G” in his book Life with a capital L.  A moment in the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow forever transformed him. Nikolai Yaroshenko’s painting There is Life Everywhere captured his attention and his mind.

Heard grapples with the statement of Jesus, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10

From C.S. Lewis to Jonny Lang, from Tolstoy to John Lennon, Heard goes deep into what this God-given life we have on earth could potentially become if we were to stop and recognize the fullness of humanity and eternity within us.

Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way,
though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, …

 

“Be still, and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:2, 10

What if in the busyness of life, we stopped to “be still and know” God? Really “know.” Life as a big “L” might spill from our hearts, flood our eyes with rich rainbows, pour unheard tones into our ears, and stream new depth of thought into our minds.

This book came to me as my Mama was walking to heaven. Her journey to heaven was longer and more agonizing than expected. Yet, in her journey, there were glimpses of eternity, reflections of her new home. On her journey, she was experiencing life with the capital “L,” and I was able to recognize that journey in a much richer depth than I think I would have if I had not been reading this book.

I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books for an honest review.

My prayer

Father, thank You for Matt Heard and his insight into the depth of this precious gift You have given to Your people, this Life. Help us in our busyness of going through life to be still and know You, to recognize You as our Great God and Creator and You as our Father who cares about each of our tears and takes us by the hand and leads us. Thank You, Father. I love you.

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Thank you to our veterans, active duty military, reservists, and their families

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Thank you to America’s veterans, active duty military, reservists, and their families for your service, your sacrifice, and your dedication. You have honored Americans and preserved our freedom.

Thank you!

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