Tag Archives: Holy Spirit

am I like the other nine?

PictJesusHealsLeperRembrandt1655-60

Luke 17:11-19

Now it happened as He went to Jerusalem that He passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee.  The as He entered a certain village, there met Him ten men who were lepers, who stood afar off.  And they lifted up their voices and said, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!”  So when He saw them, He said to them, “Go show yourselves to the priests.”  And so it was that as they went, they were cleansed.  And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, returned, and with a loud voice glorified God, and fell down on his face at His feet, giving Him thanks.  And he was a Samaritan.  So Jesus answered and said, “Were there not ten cleansed?  But where are the nine?  Were there not any found who returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?”  And He said to him, “Arise, go your way.  Your faith has made you well.”

I love to read stories in the Bible because when you are truly reading and seeking Him, amazing truths seem to pop out of the page and right into your lap.

There were ten lepers in the village that Jesus passed through.  They were miserable and wore a horrible disease and they all wanted the same thing….to be healed.  I wonder if they had heard about Jesus performing miracles in other towns and decided to take a chance and cry out for healing.

SIDE NOTE:  Have you ever wanted something so bad and you’ve prayed that God would answer your prayer (the way you wanted it answered) and were actually stunned when He does?  Or did you even notice that HE answered…..not karma, not good luck….but GOD.

What did you do?  Did you drop to your knees and thank Him?  I know that there are so many times (gulp) that I have used God as a genie….or made a silent pact with Him, like, ‘ok…if you do this…then I’ll do this…” 

Thankfully, when I asked God to come into my life, the Holy Spirit set up shop right there inside my heart.  As a believer, I am like a container for God being filled with His goodness and joy and HE should always be first in my life and in my actions.  In Psalm 119:11, David says, “Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You.”  

But in this passage of Luke, only one leper gave thanks.  Only one leper looked down as he walked to show himself to the priest and saw healing.  Unbelievable.  The one thing he wanted more than any….he was healed.

But that wasn’t the only miracle.

Can you hear the sadness in Jesus’ voice?  “Were there not ten cleansed?  But where are the nine?  Were there not any found who returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?” 

Jesus saw only one leper return and give thanks and Jesus says one more thing…”Arise, go your way.  Your faith has made you well.”  Ten were healed but one was healed AND forgiven.  Your faith has made you well.

Can you recognize God’s blessings?  Has He healed you of something….disease, finances, job…..have you thanked Him?  I don’t want to be like the other nine lepers….so excited about their healing that they either forgot or said, “That’s okay God, I can take it from here.”

I am thankful for God’s grace.  He doesn’t keep score and no amount of ‘good works’ will make Him love us anymore.  I want to have Him in my heart and on my lips so when I receive His blessings I will immediately be reminded of His love and grace.

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no fear….

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God knows….

“Behind the dim unknown

Standeth God within the shadows,

Keeping watch above His own”

~James Russel Lowell

(photo taken on our ranch) 

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what’s your excuse?

Be honest.  This is something between you and God.

Do you read the Bible?  Have you read the Bible?  If you don’t, you should.  And if you do, you know that you are reading God’s love letter written for YOU!

One of the many reasons that people (yes, believers also!) don’t bother reading the Bible is that they can’t understand it….or maybe they think it is dry and boring.  But how about this…did you know that the Bible is the world’s bestselling book?  Ever?  Hey!!  You like bestsellers!  There’s a reason to read!!

It’s also history, friends!!  AND it has changed lives!  As believers, one of the Holy Spirit’s goal is to enable christians to understand the things of God.  The Holy Spirit will teach you what you need to know, all you have to do is ask.

God wants you to understand His truth so you will fall in love with Him.  No matter where you begin in the Word, God will bless your efforts to wanting to become closer to Him, It also doesn’t matter what translation or what method you use to study.

Don’t have a Bible?  No problem!   You have a computer!  Try YouVersion.  It’s free and you can choose whatever translation suits you.  If you have trouble with your thee and thou’s,  try the Message Translation, or the Living Translation.  It’s important to pick a translation that you can read easily.

YouVersion also offers reading plans for those that don’t know where to start.  The important thing is to start.

Each time you read your Bible, ask the Lord for understanding.  There are so many treasures in God’s Word that could remain out of reach if you never ask!  Once you start, you will long to spend time in His Word and get to know your Creator even better.

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changing…

Have you ever said to yourself, “Oh, if God will just change or fix this situation, then my life would be sooo much better!”  I know I have.

But I believe that God wants us to think a bit differently.  Did you ever stop to think that maybe….just maybe…God wants to change us!

The Holy Spirit has more than enough power to transform our life from the inside out, but working that change within us can be a very slow process.  Just as the delicious fruit on the tree, our spiritual fruit takes time to grow and mature.  That is why we need patience and the faith to believe that He is working, even when we don’t see the results right away.  Our sweet Lord is never in a hurry and will never, ever give up on us.

God doesn’t just have a purpose for your life, but a unique, individualized plan for all of us!  He wants to conform every believer to the image of His Son, Jesus.  And although it may make no sense to you right now, trust Him…..He knows exactly what He is doing.

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when you don’t know what to say…

I know I talk about prayer a lot, but it has brought me through some really tough times.  When my son, Clay, was three days old and contracted Group B Strep, I found myself praying frantically and not really even knowing what to say except, “HELP!”

Then for the next 15 years of his life I would lean on God more and more, because I realized that He held my little angel in His hands.  There were times I didn’t even know how to pray.  And then there were the moments in my life that I could hardly pray at all.

I remember taking Clay in for his second G-tube placement.  His first was placed in at 5 months and now that he was 13 years old, it was no longer in the correct position since he insisted on growing!  With this surgery, we had to remove his old G-tube to prepare him for the new one.  Because Clay took so many medications, they were all in liquid form which made them easy to give….especially at three in the morning.  I could sneak in his room in the middle of the night and give him meds without him ever knowing.  It was honestly a blessing in disguise.

However, for this operation, they had to give his medications to him through his IV.  This was fine, except he could not take every medicine because some weren’t available for the intravenous lines.  So, Clay didn’t get all of his seizure medications…..and this caused him to have non-stop seizures for an entire day until I called off the surgery and demanded that they figure out a way to give him enough medication to put a halt to this non-stop seizure.

As he lay, in a puddle of sweat, his head was continuously jerking, and his right arm was suspended in the air as if being held by invisible wires.  His legs were moving spastically one direction, as his arms were moving in another.  This was the most horrific thing for a mother to watch.  I tried to crawl up in bed with him to hold his little body, but as long as he was aware of my presence, he would let out the most sorrowful moan. Clay could not communicate, but he could say, mama.  Thankfully  he could not say it now, but he could still moan and it was the most pitiful cry I had ever heard.  So the only thing for me to do was to sit by his bedside and watch, pray and cry buckets of tears.  My eyes hurt, my head hurt and there was nothing I could do.

I would close my eyes and try to pray but no words would come out.  This had not happened before.  I usually had no trouble putting my words together, but all that would come from my lips was, ‘please’.  I just remember saying please over and over again.  I know that fatigue and concern and fear had taken over my body and I just could not find words to describe my anguish. I was in a nightmare and my baby was suffering.

When the nurses finally came in and gave him an additional seizure medicine, his little body began to relax and he fell into a deep sleep, drenched in sweat.   Although I had not been able to form words of my own, I realized that God had indeed answered my prayers.

Romans 8:26-27 assures us that the Holy Spirit prays for us when we can’t even pray for ourselves.

Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses.  For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.  Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.”

When we can’t find the words, the Holy Spirit prays for us according to the Will of God.  This is a wonderful promise because as we go through life we will be faced in many situations where we can’t, or don’t, know how to pray.  It is these moments that we can be certain that the Holy Spirit is praying for us.

How many times have you tried to pray and don’t know what to ask for?  This happens most often when we are in a crisis and obviously cannot see the future or how things will turn out.  Our vision is so limited.  We can only see what is going on in our own little universe, but God sees all.  Our own vision is limited also because we are a little tainted by selfishness.  How can I be sure that I am praying for what God wants?? I want what He wants because I know that His plan is far greater than mine, but I’m selfish enough to have my own desires, too.

I love verse 27 because it says God is always searching our hearts.  There is no contradiction between the Spirit in our hearts and our Father in heaven.  When the Spirit intercedes for us, He is praying according to God’s Will. So as I pray what is in my heart, I imagine the Spirit is saying, “Father, what she really means is…..”

God knows what our deepest desires are, and He knows what we need before we even ask him.  And this, my friends offers great encouragement.

So go ahead and pray.  When you are weak and when you feel desperate about the things that truly matter to you, and all you can do is cry out, “please” or whatever word is rolling off your tongue, know that our God in Heaven hears your cry because in your weakness He is strong.  When you cannot speak, He can speak for you.

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our prayers…

Todays devo comes from Greg Laurie…I will be on a plane all day, so pray for my safe return to Phx!

SATURDAY, AUGUST 21, 2010
When You Don’t Know What to Pray

One of the things the Holy Spirit does in our lives is to help us with our prayers.

Why? Because there are times when we don’t really know what or how to pray. Maybe you are overwhelmed by a burden. You find yourself discouraged, depressed, and overwhelmed. It is at that point that the Holy Spirit will help you.

Jesus referred to the Holy Spirit as a “comforter.” In John 14:16, He said, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever” (NKJV).

We have lost the meaning of the word “comforter.” It comes from the Greek word paracletos, which means “called alongside to help,” a helper, aide, or assistant.

Some versions translate paracletos as the word “advocate,” which is applied to Jesus in 1 John 2:1: “If anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the Righteous” (NKJV).

The purpose of an advocate is to plead the cause of another—to be an intercessor. This is part of the work that the Holy Spirit has come to do in your life.

Here’s the good news: sometimes just a sigh or groan will do. Why? Because we don’t always have to put words to our prayers. The Holy Spirit will do the rest.

Trust me; I have done this many times. I don’t know what to say, or how to say it. I just know that I am in pain; so I sigh, I groan, and sometimes I cry.

That’s where the Holy Spirit comes in.

Romans 8:26–27 tells us, “And the Holy Spirit helps us in our distress. For we don’t even know what we should pray for, nor how we should pray. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will” (NLT).

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