How do I pray? Prayers from the Bible.
Before utter disaster is Joshua’s prayerlessness. Commanded specifically to NOT make a treaty with the Canaanites, the Israelite prince is quite flattered by the appearance of visitors who — apparently — come from far away to see the marvels of God. Even though he senses a red flag, he falls for their ruse (they wear old clothe in their caravan) and skips the step of prayer in his hurry to sign peace.
But the Israelites didn’t consult the Lord. – Josh. 9:14.
Thanks In My Melon blog
Think of getting all the Canaanites out of the Promised Land like the Homeland Security’s mission to clear America of potential terrorists. How many bomb-exploders do you want lurking in your neighborhood? But once they give their word, the Israelites have no choice but to let the Gibeonites live.
Can’t get motivated to pray? Think about averting disaster. Before you decide, pray. What consequence for not dispossessing the Canaanites of the land? The Israelites themselves were dispossessed of the land centuries later (in the captivities).
pic from Joy’s Facebook
Joy Womack could have resigned herself to failure when she was kicked out of the renowned Kirov Academy at age 13. They cited her inflexibility and predicted failure for her.
Joy’s hand is raised
But Joy didn’t give up. Today the 19-year-old is the first American ever to graduate from the Bolshoi Ballet Academy — and the first American to be contracted by the Bolshoi professionally. (Ok, so she wasn’t good enough for Kirov? Now, she’s winning roles traditionally reserved for Russians at the world’s preeminent ballet company, a reign of unquestioned dominance that has lasted for 200 years.)
Joy, a vibrant, Spirit-filled Christian, embodies her name. She got saved as a child and attended our church before her family moved to Texas. Her Twitter account says “I dance for Jesus.” She evangelizes everyone she meets.
with her dad, Clay Womack
I had scant conversation with her when she was a kid because I was a missionary in Guatemala when she was growing up in the church. But as I think about her overcoming failure, of her rejecting rejection, I’m inspired myself.
“She worked really, really hard,” her mom, Dr. Eleanor Womack, said. “She sought coaches and other techniques to improve her flexibility.” From the looks of the photo above, she’s not lacking flexibility anymore.
The video below was produced by the New York Times when they broke the story of Joy.
Thank you, Joy! (All photos are from Joy’s Facebook page)
Legendary football coach Chuck Knox
Then-new L.A. Rams football coach Chuck Knox told his players that his squad would be 1) tougher, 2) smarter, and 3) in better condition. Walk-on Rob Scribner figured he wouldn’t make the team, but he tried out just to prove himself right.
But those words energized Scribner for what they omitted. They left out a key word in sports: “talent.” Scribner figured he lacked the raw talent for NFL level to make the team. But he knew he could work hard at being tougher and get in better condition. While other guys were out drinking, he’d be studying his plays to be smarter.
In the end, Scribner made the team and played four years. Of him, Knox said, “Scribner was one of my all-time great guys.”
Lots of people have limitless talent. Not everybody is willing to roll up the sleeves, dig in and sweat a gallon. Too many pastors, leaders, and church members are set on cruise control. They’re lazy.
Scribner, at right
Too many are unwilling to log the hours in prayer or sacrifice their time in service. Is cleaning the church beneath you? Can you give up personal entertainment options to set yourself apart for His service. Do you want to charge the church for your expertise and talent? Are you getting “smarter” by reading your Bible?
Today Scribner is my pastor, at the Lighthouse Church in Santa Monica. His phenomenal work ethic, his tenacity, his vision continue to inspire new generations of dragon-slayers. There’s genius in “just showing up” to rule the world, as they say.
- How to pray?
- Prayers from the Bible
Recommissioned by President Ronald Reagan in 1984, the USS Iowa saw action in the Persian Gulf War. Her frontward deck turrets make for impressive pictures, but their storied blasting power ceded to superior weapons: the Harpoon missiles.
When I visited the Iowa with my family on Memorial Day in the Los Angeles Harbor, a sailor told how he launched harpoon missiles to simultaneously strike from three different directions an Iranian oil rig where they were mining waters. The poor Iranian Guardsmen had no idea where the attack was coming from when three harpoon missiles all struck from different directions at the same time. It was that easy. Just program the computer and push the button.
LOVE the mustache of this guy!
That sounds like prayer to me. 1) Program the computer = praying. 2) Push the button = God acts. And KABLOOM! The devil and his minions are annihilated.
The war goes on. So there is a continued need for prayer. In the Old Testament, Biblical authors used the imagery at hand to describe God: “He is a strong tower.” Well, in the age of technology, a tower is not very strong anymore. Maybe we should sing about God being our Harpoon missile system.
You don’t neutralize threats by sending Hallmark cards. You must pray:
- for your children
- for your parents
- for your relatives
- for your pastor
- for your church
- for your friends and neighbors
- for finances
- for health
- for the advance of the gospel worldwide
The LA Fire Department’s firefighting tug for ship fires in the harbor put on a show for the Memorial Day tourists.
It would be ideal to live in world without war. But since terrorists fly planes into building to kill civilians for Allah-knows-what reason, there is war. Similarly, the devil is raging war, and we can only counteract his threat with spiritual action. He’s not interested in signing peace. He’ll sign peace only to get us to unilaterally lay down our weapons (prayer). He has no intention of ceasing from his hostile opposition to God’s kingdom.
- How to pray?
- Bible prayers.
- Use of prayer.
Perched on a warship’s side, the U.S. Navy’s potent anti-missile Gatling gun Phalanx CIWS spews out 3,000 armor-piercing tungsten 20mm rounds per minute that down rockets flying at Mach 3 straight towards a ship. Guided by radar and computerized systems, the Phalanx bullets blunt incoming attacks.
But when an Argentine warplane fired an Exocet missile against a British warship in the 1982 Falkland War, the powerful Phalanx failed, and the HMS Sheffield was struck and sunk.
What was the “design flaw” of the Phalanx?
In order to work, it had to be turned on.
The Brits, staging a reconquest of the disputed Southern Hemisphere island, had failed to turn on the Phalanx, and consequently the Phalanx failed to defend the ship. It was left on “standby.”
So too, prayer, in order to work effectively, must be turned on. It must be used. We must pray for it to work. Too many Christians leave prayer on “standby” only. And when incoming missiles head towards us at Mach 3, we don’t have time to react.
Prayer is meant to be used, not ignored.
Posted in Bible prayers
Tagged Bible prayers, Christianity, Exocet, Faith, Falkland War, HMS Sheffield, how do I pray?, how to pray?, Jesus, Phalanx CIWS, prayer, prayers from the Bible