Come to me, all you who are very weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke
upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for
your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. – Matthew 11: 28-30

Lent started on Wednesday 22 nd February with Ash Wednesday and would continue until
Saturday 8 th April, a day before Easter Sunday. Originally, Lent was kept as a pre-Easter retreat:
a prolonged period of time when Christians would “tone up” spiritually. Their “spiritual
aerobics” were not unlike the intensive training an athlete undergoes before an important race
or the strict diet a person goes on in order to lose weight for medical or cosmetic purpose.
The reason why Christians took Lent so seriously from the days of the Early Church onwards is
that Easter Day was the highlight of their year. On this day, like us, they celebrated the amazing
fact that Jesus’ body was not left in the grave. He rose from dead! But on this day, they also
welcomed converts to Christianity into full fellowship of the church and welcomed back people
who had once believed in God but whose faith in Him had grown dim and whose love for Him
had grown cold. Throughout Lent, these people would prepare for Easter by becoming familiar
with the basic teaching essential to understanding of Christianity. They would be encouraged to
repent of the past failures and be shown how to live life God’s way. Committed Christians did
not escape the rigours of the Lenten season. They, too, took Lent seriously and used it as a time
to examine their life-style, to turn their backs on the sin that so easily creeps into their lives and
to re-dedicate their lives to God.
Lent means to sacrifice our most precious commodity, time: quality time for God. During Lent
we should devote our time to extra prayer, extra Bible meditation, extra reflection and serious
repentance. Such dedicated time to God would make a difference to the way we worship when
Easter Day arrives.

  1. A time for spiritual spring-cleaning; a challenge to combat evil in our lives. And Lent
    is a time to turn back to God. The Prophet Joel puts the invitation this way: ‘Rend
    your heart and not your garments. Return to the Lord your God, for He is gracious
    and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and He relents from
    sending calamity.’ (Joel 2:13 NIV)
  2. A time for new beginnings. New beginnings start with repentance. Repentance is
    not negative. True repentance is an active, positive attitude which effects real and
    deep changes. Repentance involves recognizing the wrong, and, where possible,
    putting it right. And when we repent, we are determining in our minds that we will
    live differently. John the Baptist said ‘Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near’
    (Matthew 3:2). Repentance means to face up honestly to the past and turn from
    it… Our own repentance conjures up feelings of being sorry or guilty for something.
    The biblical meaning is far deeper and richer. In the New Testament usage,

repentance turns us from sin, selfishness, darkness, idols, habits, bondages and
demons both private and public. Jim Wallis puts it this way: ‘We turn from all that
binds and oppresses us and others, from all the false worship that has controlled
us. Ultimately, repentance is turning from the powers of death. These ominous
forces no longer hold us in their grip; they no longer have the last word’.
Repentance and receiving God’s forgiveness go hand in hand. The Apostle John
writes: ‘If we confess our sins to God, He will keep His promise…He will forgive us
our sins and purify us from all our wrongdoing.’ (1 John 1:9). After we have
confessed, we must move on to receive and embrace God’s forgiveness and love.
To fail to do so implies that we give greater importance to our sinful self than to
God’s goodness. We must learn to accept that God’s goodness is greater than our
‘badness’; that there is joy in God’s heart in extending to us the forgiving love
which sets us free from past sin. So, we must refuse to nurse a sense of guilt and
accept the healing God offers.

  1. A glorious forty-day retreat. A retreat is a time to stand back; to ask; ‘what have I
    been doing with my life?’ What has God been teaching me? Where have I
    succeeded in living life God’s way? Where have I failed? What do I need to
    confess to God or to change?’ Lenten retreat is a time to recognize our
    wanderings and to determine to go back to God. Like the young man in the story of
    the prodigal son, we are to make a calculated choice to come back to our Father: ‘I
    will get up and go to my father and say, “Father, I have sinned against God and
    against you. I am no longer fit to be called your son: treat me as one of your hired
    workers.’ (Luke 15: 20-24) : and enjoy our Father’s joyful restoration.
  2. A time to hope. Unending love is what God is. Lent is a time to experience that love
    all over again. For this reason, God ‘woos’ and assures us that though we have
    failed Him, He will not forsake us: ‘How can I give you up?… How can I abandon
    you?… My heart will not let me do it! My love for you is too strong.’ (Hosea 11:8).
    Now is the time to make a personal response to God invitation: ‘Return to the Lord
    your God and let this prayer be your offering to Him: “Forgive all our sins and
    accept our prayer, and we will praise you as we have promised”’(Hosea 14:2) .
    Because God’s love is perfect, when we return to Him, we enjoy security. He has
    promised that He will never abandon us nor banish us from His presence — ‘Does a
    woman forget her baby at the breast, or fail to cherish the son of her womb? Yet
    even if these forget, I will never forget you. See, I have branded you on the palms
    of my hands.’
  3. A time to re-focus; to turn away from the business which pre-occupies us for most
    of the year and concentrate on Jesus.

Lent is a wonderful time we should not miss. Let us go through the rigours of the 40 days
spiritual disciplines of fasting and prayers and enjoy prolific change and growth in our walk with
the Lord Jesus Christ.

Remain Blessed!
Please continue to join us on Asempa 94.7 FM – Sundays 5.30 am., Sunny 88.7 FM – Tuesdays
5:30 am; and YFM 107.9 – Sundays 6.30am; for our Radio Bible Study as well as Sunny FM
88.7 FM every Sunday at 3:30 pm. for Hymns and their Stories.


By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises
offered up his only begotten son, Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called:
Accounting that God was able to raise Him up, even from the dead; from whence also He
received Him in a figure. – Hebrews 11:17-19

The story of Abraham’s testing in Genesis 22 is one of the most famous stories about his life.
After waiting for years for God to fulfill His promise of a son, imagine Abraham’s shock when
God asked him to sacrifice his “only son” to him. Immediately Abraham set off to obey God in
faith, but as Abraham prepared to sacrifice his son, God stopped him and provided a sacrificial
ram in Isaac’s place.
Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son in obedience to God reminds us how God has done
the same for us. God gave His “only Son”, Jesus, to die for us a sacrifice for our sins. If God is
willing to sacrifice the one He loves most, why would we not offer everything, even our lives, as
living sacrifices back to Him?

Lent invites us to make our minds and hearts ready for remembering Jesus’ life, death, and
body resurrection.
From its start on Ash Wednesday (February 22 nd , 2023) until its conclusion on Easter Sunday (9 th
April, 2023). Lent has been a traditional time for fasting or giving something up or abstinence.
Lent is a 40-day season (not counting Sundays) marked by repentance, fasting, reflection, and
ultimately celebration.
The 40-day period represents Christ’s time of temptation in the wilderness, where He fasted
and where Satan tempted Him. Lent asks believers to set aside a time each year for similar
fasting, marking an intentional season of focus on Christ’s life, ministry, sacrifice, and
Honouring the Sacrifice of Jesus
During the Lenten season, we are expected to make sacrifices, as children of God and followers
of Christ. The sacrifices should remind us of the one made by Jesus through which He saved us
from sin and won for us salvation of our souls.
Many Christians traditionally give up (sacrifice) something they value or enjoy in order to
honour His sacrifice and to prepare themselves for His coming death, resurrection and victory over Satan.  The sacrifice does not have to be something extraordinary. It may mean cutting
down on our excesses on a daily basis and allowing God’s grace to reign in our lives.
These Lenten sacrifices can end up becoming traditions instead of acts of spiritual commitment
and focus. Like all spiritual practices it comes down to the motivation in our hearts. Are we
doing this for God or are we just doing this for ourselves?
Jesus said in Matthew 6:17-18, “But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face,
so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is
unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Jesus reminds us
that when we fast or sacrifice for Him we do not need to let others know or announce it in a
way that brings attention on ourselves. 

Here are some of the key elements of the Lenten season, along with some of the symbolism that comes
with it. Many of these practices can be celebrated both individually and as a community:

  1. Purple: Like Advent, the official color for Lent is purple. Usually, churches that celebrate Lent choose
    the deepest, darkest shade of purple for this special season. They may also strip their churches bare of
    some of the usual decorations adorning the walls. Purple is the color of repentance for sins and also
    symbolizes the state of our souls outside the light of Christ. During this time, pray for those who do not
    know Christ and for those who have sinned gravely against Him.
  2. Confession: The 40 days are set aside to really examine areas of recurring sin in our lives that prevent
    us from being conformed to God’s Will.
    Keep in mind the idea here is not to be overly scrupulous or to deceive ourselves into thinking we can
    earn heaven through our own goodness. The goal is to honestly examine our lives in light of God’s Word
    and to make a commitment to change in any areas we have not submitted to the Lord. A good way to
    start an examination of conscience is by praying Psalm 139:23-24: “Search me, O God, and know my
    heart; test me and know my thoughts. See if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way
    everlasting.” Then, hold up your life to the Ten Commandments. Confess, perhaps even to your pastor
    or an accountability partner (James 5:16), the ways you’ve sinned against God, thank Him for His
    forgiveness, and ask Him for the grace to change.
  3. Fasting and Prayer: Fasting is a practice that has really gone by the wayside in many Christian circles.
    Yet, if done correctly, it can be a powerful time of renewing our relationship with God. Fasting can be
    found in both the Old Testament and the New, with Moses (Exodus 34:28; Deuteronomy 9:9,18 ), Elijah
    (1 Kings 19:8), and our Lord (Matthew 4:2) all participating in 40-day fasts. Fasting is a way of denying
    ourselves the excesses of life so that we might be more attuned to the Lord’s voice. It is also a way of
    disciplining ourselves, strengthening our “spiritual muscles” so to speak so that when temptations arise
    in life, you are already used to saying “no” to your desires. And finally, fasting is also a way of
    participating, in a small way, in the sufferings of Christ and can be particularly powerful when
    accompanied by prayer and confession.

  1. Meditating on Christ’s Sacrifice for Mankind: In addition to periodic fasting and prayer, our scriptural
    meditations typically turn to the salvation offered to us through Christ’s suffering. Read Old Testament
    Scriptures prophesying the suffering of Christ and the New Testament Gospel accounts.
  2. Charity/Almsgiving: A very important element of the Lenten season is becoming aware of not only
    the suffering and sacrifice of Christ but also to the suffering of others. Between now and Good Friday,
    choose one way you can increase your giving to those in need. It could be through extra financial
    offerings, donating goods you no longer need or use to charity, or increasing your personal time
    commitment to a ministry or cause close to your heart.

 So let us honour God this Lenten season by giving up the sin in our lives “that so easily
entangles us” (Hebrews 12:1) so that we can “fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter
of our faith!” (Hebrews 12:2) Let us focus on prayer and being obedient to His commands

Stay blessed!

For further inquiries please contact us on Tel Nos. 0243588467 or 0268130615
Email: saltnlightministries@gmail.com
Website: saltandlightministriesgh.org


Last week we published Part 1 on ‘GOD’S UNCHANGING WORD: HOPE FOR ALL’, theme for the
celebration of Bible week 2023 by the Bible Society of Ghana. We studied some scriptures
which offered guidelines on how God’s unchanging Word directs and positively transforms our
lives in a rapidly changing world.
Please enjoy and pass it on!

6a. Nations are also blessed when they return to God’s unchanging word.
All the people came together as one in the square before the Water Gate. They told Ezra the
teacher of the Law to bring out the Book of the Law of Moses, which the Lord had commanded
for Israel.
So on the first day of the seventh month Ezra the priest brought the Law before the assembly,
which was made up of men and women and all who were able to understand. He read it aloud
from daybreak till noon as he faced the square before the Water Gate in the presence of the
men, women and others who could understand. And all the people listened attentively to the
Book of the Law.
Ezra the teacher of the Law stood on a high wooden platform built for the occasion. Beside him
on his right stood Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Uriah, Hilkiah and Maaseiah; and on his left were
Pedaiah, Mishael, Malkijah, Hashum, Hashbaddanah, Zechariah and Meshullam.
Ezra opened the book. All the people could see him because he was standing above them; and
as he opened it, the people all stood up. Ezra praised the Lord, the great God; and all the people
lifted their hands and responded, “Amen! Amen!” Then they bowed down and worshiped
the Lord with their faces to the ground.
The Levites—Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita,
Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan and Pelaiah—instructed the people in the Law while the people were
standing there. They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the
meaning so that the people understood what was being read.
Then Nehemiah the governor, Ezra the priest and teacher of the Law, and the Levites who were
instructing the people said to them all, “This day is holy to the Lord your God. Do not mourn or
weep.” For all the people had been weeping as they listened to the words of the Law.
Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have
nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your
strength.” – Nehemiah 8:1-10.

6b. God’s unchanging word needs to be taught, studied and obeyed with diligence.
For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the Lord, and to
teaching its decrees and laws in Israel. – Ezra 7:10
Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with
all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in
your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord
Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. – Colossians 3:16-17
Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be
ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. – 2 Timothy 2:15.

6c. We must submit to the searchlight of His unchanging Word.
For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates
even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the
heart.  13  Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare
before the eyes of him to whom we must give account. – Hebrews 4:12-13
  Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who
listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a
mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks
like.  25  But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in
it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do. –
James 1:22-25
6d. Rejection of this unchanging word can spell doom for families and nations.
This is what the Lord says: “For three sins of Judah, even for four, I will not relent. Because they
have rejected the law of the Lord and have not kept His decrees, because they have been led
astray by false gods, the gods their ancestors followed, I will send fire on Judah that will
consume the fortresses of Jerusalem.”
This is what the Lord says: “For three sins of Israel, even for four, I will not relent. They sell the
innocent for silver, and the needy for a pair of sandals. They trample on the heads of the poor as
on the dust of the ground and deny justice to the oppressed. Father and son use the same girl
and so profane my holy name. They lie down beside every altar on garments taken in pledge. In
the house of their god they drink wine taken as fines. – Amos 2:4-8
To be continued!

Stay blessed!

For further inquiries please contact us on Tel Nos. 0243588467 or 0268130615
Email: saltnlightministries@gmail.com
Website: saltandlightministriesgh.org



“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of His glory.” – Isaiah 6:3

The word Holy in Isaiah 6:3 was carefully repeated three times. It is the only description of God
repeated in the three-fold formula, a literary device to lay great emphasis to God’s Holiness. 
This is precisely what God gave to Isaiah; a dramatic revelation of His holiness. He saw the Lord
sitting enthroned, lofty and exalted. The angels who stood above Him were magnificent, and
they called out to one another, “Holy, Holy, Holy, is the LORD of hosts, the whole earth is full
of His glory”. The earth quaked, and the temple was filled with smoke. 
In the awesome presence of the Lord, the prophet Isaiah stood in awestruck wonder, yet the
holiness of God caused him to recoil in reverential fear. Similarly, the prophet Daniel and the
apostle John demonstrated the same emotional mixture of attraction and dread when ushered
into the presence of their majestic Creator (Daniel 8:17; Revelation 1:17).
God is beyond full human comprehension. Indeed, our language lacks the superlatives and
precision necessary to justly describe Him. Drawn to Him for His unequaled goodness and
majesty, we will fall down in Holy reverence to His Majesty.

A. The core idea behind holiness is absolute moral purity. God is not only perfectly good; He is
the very source and standard of goodness. In this regard, goodness has a permanence to it
precisely because it is rooted in the eternal and everlasting God. Goodness does not change
because God does not change.
B. God is holy. In Him, there is not even the faintest trace of evil. He is impeccably pure, wholly
without fault, and uncompromisingly just. God cannot lie. He cannot make wrong decisions. He
is blameless, timeless, and sinless.

C. When we lose a vision of the beauty of His holiness, then there is an ugliness that creeps
from the inside out, touching our relationships, churches, workplaces, buildings and ways of
life. In the Old Testament, there were holy places and holy spaces. The ground around the
burning bush was holy (Exodus 3:5). The temple was holy (Isaiah 64:11; Habakkuk 2:20). There
are holy utensils (I Chronicles 9:29), garments (Exodus 29:21; Lev. 16:4), foods (I Samuel 21:4;
Nehemiah 7:65), oil (Exodus 30:25, 31; Numbers 35:13; Ezekiel 42:13).

D. The holiness of God sets apart concrete things as holy. Though we are not bound by the
ceremonial law (fulfilled in Christ), we are to now set apart all aspects of our lives as holy unto
the Lord. There is for us a holy meal (the Lord’s supper), holy baptism, holy hands (I Timothy
2:8), and a holy calling (II Timothy 1:9). We are now to be holy in body and spirit (I Cor. 7:34)
and to offer our bodies as a holy sacrifice (Romans 12:1). 
Unlike His created beings, God is eternal, preeminent, omnipotent, omniscient, and
omnipresent. He was, is, and will be before all things. He is ageless, tireless, and faultless. He is
beyond full human comprehension. Drawn to Him for His unequaled goodness and majesty, the
Prophet Isaiah wrote,
“For thus says the One who is high and lifted up,
who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy:
‘I dwell in the high and holy place,
and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit,
to revive the spirit of the lowly,
and to revive the heart of the contrite’” (Isaiah 57:15, ESV).

To the lost the holiness of God is a dreadful matter, but to the redeemed the holiness of God is
our greatest good.
Christians may rest safely in God’s promises because He is faithful not only in his intentions but
in his nature. By nature, He is unchangeable. God swore by himself. He is immutable and,
therefore, His oath/promise is immutable and reliable.
The Dangers of Ignoring God’s Holiness
Ignoring God’s holiness brought deadly consequences. Aaron’s sons Nadab and Abihu, acted
contrary to God’s commands in their priestly duties and he killed them with fire. Many years
later, when King David was having the ark of the covenant moved on a cart, in violation of God’s
commands, it tipped when the oxen stumbled, and a man named Uzzah touched it to steady it.
God immediately struck Uzzah dead.
We ought to offer absolute reverence to His holiness
Reverence for God is a quality missing in much of what masquerades as Christianity today.
Instead of the kind of reverence we see demonstrated throughout the Bible, modern
Christianity has adopted a “a posture” in their prayers that seems to command God. Our
attitude grossly downplays the holiness, power, and righteous wrath of the Sovereign Creator.
When the worshipers enter the place of meeting, they should do so with decorum, passing
quietly to their seats. We should not be indolent, careless, and inappropriate in our attitude.
Common talking, whispering, and laughing should not be permitted in the house of worship,
either before or after the service. Ardent, active piety should characterize the worshipers.

Human beings were created to worship God, so reverence is the natural response of a heart
that has been transformed by the Holy Spirit. The more we grow in knowledge and
understanding, the more reverence we feel toward Him. Proper reverence is not the same as
stiff, religious formality. The gift of Jesus to us was God’s invitation to draw near (James
4:8; John 14:9). However, familiarity with God should not breed contempt, by making us ignore
the awesomeness the Holiness of the Almighty God.
Prayer point
God Almighty, we have out of total ignorance made you too little. Please forgive our foolish
ways. Help us to tread cautiously in your presence and help us to be holy as you are Holy. In
Jesus name we have prayed. Amen

Remain Blessed!
Please continue to join us on Asempa 94.7 FM – Sundays 5.30 am., Sunny 88.7 FM – Tuesdays
5:30 am; and YFM 107.9 – Sundays 6.30am; for our Radio Bible Study as well as Sunny FM
88.7 FM every Sunday at 3:30 pm. for Hymns and their Stories.

Jesus Expects Us To Love Him In Storms!

SCRIPTURE: “He said to His disciples, Why are you so afraid?. Do you still have no faith?” (Mark 4:40 NIV)
What Jesus expected of His disciples is the same thing that God expected of Israel in the wilderness. What did God expect of Israel in the wilderness? To love and trust Him in a walk of faith.  We have a description of Israel’s deliverance from Egypt and God’s leadership of them in the wilderness. As believers, we do not have to fear following Jesus. You will note that each place that God led Israel by the glory cloud, He expected one thing of them: Will you trust Me? Will you believe me? Each time He tested their faith, they murmured and complained. Do you really feel that it was realistic for Jesus to expect the disciples to react differently in the storm? Most of us would agree that their reaction to the circumstances they faced that night was quite natural. Jesus expected them to trust Him in the storm. Throughout Scripture, we find that God expects us to love and trust Him. Our growth and enlargement proceeds from our trust and obedience to God.

Source: Culled from, Growing Through The Storms Of Life, by E. Truman Herring (Vol. one)


Rev. Dr. Joyce R. Aryee
(Executive Director, Salt and Light Ministries)
Salt and Light Ministries
P.O.Box AN 15007, Accra North
Contact: 0302 772013,026 8130 615/0243588467
Email: saltnlightministries@gmail.com
Website : saltandlightministriesgh.org


“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you” – Psalm 32:8.

The prospect of a new year can be exciting because of many new possibilities and opportunities, but also disquieting if you face the future with anxiety – wondering whether the problems and disasters of the past will repeat themselves.

International crises, financial setbacks, as well as personal problems and disappointments tend to cloud our vision of the future.

Always remember that you can place your hope in the omniscience of God. He truly cares about you and He loves you deeply. Believe in the promises of Jesus and approach the new year in His loving presence. He will guide you through the labyrinth of life because He knows what is best for you.

Prayer: You are truly a God of love! Thank You for sending Your only Son so that I, too, can be saved. Amen.


SOURCE: Culled from Grace for Each Moment.


Romans 8:1-4

Some believers are plagued by feelings of condemnation. Either they think they’ll never live up to God’s expectations for them or they’re nearly drowning in guilt over past sins. These men and women cannot seem to shake the sense that God is displeased with their puny efforts at being Christlike.

The book of Romans confronts this lie head-on: “There is therefore no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 8:1). When the Savior went to the cross on our behalf, He lifted the blame from our shoulders and made us righteous before God. Those feelings of condemnation do not belong to us; they are from Satan. He amplifies our guilt and feelings of inadequacy and then suggests that’s how the Lord feels about His “wayward child.” Nothing could be further from the truth. Our sins are wiped clean, and we are chosen and loved by God.

Condemnation is reserved for those who reject the Lord (John 3:36). Sin is a death sentence (Rom. 6:23). Anyone who chooses to cling to sin instead of seeking divine forgiveness must pay the penalty, which is an eternity separated from God. Two synonyms of condemn are ‘denounce’ and ‘revile.’ Those words certainly describe Jesus’ statement to unbelievers in Matthew 25:41: “Depart from me, accursed ones.”

There is no condemnation for those who receive Jesus Christ as their Savior. The believer’s penalty for sin is paid, and he can stand blameless before God. Trust in the Lord’s love and let go of Satan’s lie. God’s beloved children are covered by His grace and the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.


SOURCE: Culled from In Touch Ministries


John 15:16

Yesterday we looked at God’s promise in John 14:14. Too often people take the verse to imply, “If you ask anything, I will do it.” They overlook the most essential phrase: “in My name.”

Asking in Christ’s name has two meanings. First, believers are welcome to make requests that align with God’s purpose and plan. To do that, we need to ask Him if our prayers match His will. God has several ways of assuring followers that they are on the correct path. For instance, He may increase right desires or decrease wrong ones. Another possibility is that He will use His Word to redirect a Christian’s steps or confirm that the believer is going the right way. Either way, God will make a path for the man or woman who seeks to do His will.

Second, invoking Christ’s name means that we desire to glorify Him instead of ourselves. James gives this warning: “You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures” (James 4:3). To understand that, let’s consider those who are trying to pray their way out of a financial hole as an example. The question is, Does a person want to get out of debt so that he has more for himself or so that he can use the excess in God-honoring ways? Motives are apparent to God, and He will not encourage ones rooted in sin.

In the name Jesus Christ, there is abundant power. However, calling upon Him in prayer is not a magic charm to get what we want. Rather, it is a signal that we are laying down our personal desires and our own way of getting things done. In so doing, we commit to follow God and bring honor to Him.
Bible in One Year: Luke 2-3

SOURCE: Culled from In Touch Ministries


”‘I know what I am planning for you,’ says the LORD. ‘I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you a hope and a good future. Then you will call my name. You will come to me and pray to me, and I will listen to you’” (Jeremiah 29:11-12 NCV).

Is there anything God can’t do? There are a lot of things God can’t do. He can’t deny himself. He can’t be evil. God is good, so by nature, he cannot do bad things. Everything God does is good. And so, because God is good, God’s plans for your life will always be good.

Jeremiah 29:11-12 says, “‘I know what I am planning for you,’ says the Lord. ‘I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you a hope and a good future. Then you will call my name. You will come to me and pray to me, and I will listen to you’” (NCV).
Do you see the connection between prayer and God’s plans for your life?

I’ve said this many times, but I’ll say it again: You are not an accident. There is a purpose for your life. There are accidental parents, but there are no accidental children. Your parents may not have planned you, but God did, and he wanted you alive.
Now, God didn’t have to create a plan for your life. He could have just let you be born and then wander around aimlessly.
But God has never made anything without a purpose. Everything has a purpose and a plan. God gave you a plan for your life. Why? Because he loves you. He is a good God, so he put a lot of thought into creating you.

And now you may ask, “Well, how do I know God’s plan?” God’s plans for your life are revealed and realized through prayer. The more you pray, the more you’re going to understand God’s plan for your life. When you pray to him, he listens, and he answers and reveals more of himself to you.
SOURCE: Culled from Daily Hope with Rick Warren


”He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve . . . He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west” (Psalm 103:10, 12 NLT).God always gives us what we need, not what we deserve. Psalm 103:10, 12 says, “He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve . . . He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west” (NLT).
Instead of giving us the punishment we deserve, Jesus Christ paid for all our sins and all our wrongs. I like that the Bible says, “as far as the east is from the west,” because there’s no end to east and west. There is a north pole, and there is a south pole. But there is no end from east to west. God has simply taken our sin and wiped it out!
And if God has forgiven you, then you need to forgive yourself.

There’s this guy in the Bible, King David, who committed adultery and then, to cover it up, had the woman’s husband murdered. Those are pretty big sins—murder and adultery. Did David deserve to be forgiven? No. Did David deserve mercy? No. But David knew that God is a good God, and so he asked for mercy. He prayed: “Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love. Because of your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins. Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin” (Psalm 51:1-2 NLT).
If you are struggling with a big sin right now, you need to go read all of Psalm 51. The entire psalm is based on who God is, not who you are.

Let me make this really clear: God forgives you not because you’re good but because he is good. He is a good God, and he has a good plan for you—even when you blow it big-time. Nothing can separate you from his love!
SOURCE: Culled from Daily Hope with Rick Warren