Hungry {Day 24}

By Saturday, November 24, 2012 0 0

One chapter into the book 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess and I can already feel my life changing.

Jen Hatmaker ends the first chapter with a reminder that Jesus launched his ministry, the most world-changing three years in the history of world, not with great (earthly) power, not with politics or plans or a charismatic campaign, but in weakness. He began his ministryhungry.

“And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.” (Matt 4:2)

I have been praying to be filled up. I do need that, sort of desperately. But first, I must empty myself of everything I am using to try to fill me up so that I can be filled with stuff that lasts. So that my longing soul is satisfied.

Tonight, this missionary is praying to be emptied.

Stay Connected {Day 23}

By Friday, November 23, 2012 0 0

In the spirit of Twitter’s “Follow Friday.” I want to remind you that in this day and age, it is super easy to stay connected with a missionary. Unless they serve in a closed country and can’t share specific prayer requests or be available on the internet, chances are your missionary has a website, a blog, a Facebook page or group, a Twitter feed, relevant boards on Pinterest, a Skype username (chris.duryee10) or a church that posts updates.

I am sorry for this shameless post. I have just started reading a book that I can tell is going to change my life forever and it will certainly influence this blog as well.

We Have An Audience… {Day 20}

By Tuesday, November 20, 2012 0 0

We have an audience, as witnesses for Jesus Christ, but the world is not a stage. Read this passage out of Matthew 6 from The Message. Remember this is Jesus talking; giving us instructions on how to pray. Check yourself! Pray that missionaries would check themselves too. That’s why I titled the post the way I did. Some people {ministers of the Gospel} are in a wonderful position to be ambassadors for Christ for a living. It feels like the spotlight is on them. But these instructions are for all. We are all ambassadors for Christ.

The World Is Not a Stage

6 “Be especially careful when you are trying to be good so that you don’t make a performance out of it. It might be good theater, but the God who made you won’t be applauding.

2-4 “When you do something for someone else, don’t call attention to yourself. You’ve seen them in action, I’m sure—‘playactors’ I call them—treating prayer meeting and street corner alike as a stage, acting compassionate as long as someone is watching, playing to the crowds. They get applause, true, but that’s all they get. When you help someone out, don’t think about how it looks. Just do it—quietly and unobtrusively. That is the way your God, who conceived you in love, working behind the scenes, helps you out.

Pray with Simplicity

“And when you come before God, don’t turn that into a theatrical production either. All these people making a regular show out of their prayers, hoping for stardom! Do you think God sits in a box seat?

“Here’s what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace.

7-13 “The world is full of so-called prayer warriors who are prayer-ignorant. They’re full of formulas and programs and advice, peddling techniques for getting what you want from God. Don’t fall for that nonsense. This is your Father you are dealing with, and he knows better than you what you need. With a God like this loving you, you can pray very simply. Like this:

Our Father in heaven,
Reveal who you are.
Set the world right;
Do what’s best—
as above, so below.
Keep us alive with three square meals.
Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others.
Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil.
You’re in charge!
You can do anything you want!
You’re ablaze in beauty!
Yes. Yes. Yes.

14-15 “In prayer there is a connection between what God does and what you do. You can’t get forgiveness from God, for instance, without also forgiving others. If you refuse to do your part, you cut yourself off from God’s part.

16-18 “When you practice some appetite-denying discipline to better concentrate on God, don’t make a production out of it. It might turn you into a small-time celebrity but it won’t make you a saint. If you ‘go into training’ inwardly, act normal outwardly. Shampoo and comb your hair, brush your teeth, wash your face. God doesn’t require attention-getting devices. He won’t overlook what you are doing; he’ll reward you well.

Get Kids Involved {Day 19}

By Monday, November 19, 2012 0 0

Yesterday we were privileged to teach the first through sixth graders at Eastgate. After sharing a bit about our ministry in Spain, pointing out Spain, Madrid, and Alcalá on a map, and answering questions, we all did a craft together to encourage the kids to pray for us every day.

Prayer Wheel for Spain

Materials

  • This image, printed to be about 6 inches
  • 2 basic paper plates
  • 1 brad
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick (represented by double-sided tape in my picture. That’s all I had.)
  • Crayons, markers or colored pencils
  • Stickers and other paper decorative items (not pictured here. If you like glitter, go all out!)

Instructions:

Cut out the wheel and color the images.

Using the wheel as a guide, mark lines on one of the paper plate and cut a slice out of it.  (Be sure not to cut all the way to the middle, where the brad will go). You can also decorate this plate however you like.

After the wheel is colored, glue it to the center of the whole plate (try to avoid getting glue right in the middle of the plate, where the hole is)

To poke your hole, layer the cut plate on the bottom, poke a hole in the plates using a dowel, and then put the cut plate back on top. Finally, attach them together with the brad.

Turn the top of the wheel each day to pray for a different person or aspect of church planting in Spain six times a week. You can write some specific requests in the plate’s border.

Be Thankful {Day 17}

By Saturday, November 17, 2012 0 0

Most of my prayers are prayers of gratitude. Gratitude to God is the only way that I can pray unceasingly, as 1 Thessalonians 5:17 says, and abide in Christ. Certainly, I can ask all day long for things I want, but that’s not relationship. It’s whining. When I thank God, though, I remember that he is worthy. He knows best. And he gives good gifts to me, his daughter.

Perhaps thankfulness lists deserve their own button or category, but I see being grateful as an answer to prayer as well. It qualifies because my thankfulness glorifies the Son, which is the end result of answered prayers.

Some things I am thankful for:

  • My friends Jenny and Ally and their children who turned two this week.
  • I have finally let go of needs and expectations around Susanna’s nap schedule and been more productive and relaxed.
  • So has she, consequently.
  • My family is sick but I am well.
  • Thanksgiving dinner at our church tonight.
  • My in-laws, who watch and entertain Susanna while I chat with friends at church
  • Constant reminders to be thankful.
  • Warm clothes, warm home, warm life.
  • Football isn’t everything. (Tough night for my Ducks)
  • Chris prays for us each night before we put Susanna to bed, and she seems to be calming down and able to sit still during this time. It is sweet to watch her grow.
  • Prayer changes things.
  • My life seems chaotic, but God is constant.