31 October, Thursday – Pray and Bless

31 Oct 2019

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Romans 8:31-39

With God on our side who can be against us? Since God did not spare his own Son, but gave him up to benefit us all, we may be certain, after such a gift, that he will not refuse anything he can give. Could anyone accuse those that God has chosen? When God acquits, could anyone condemn? Could Christ Jesus? No! He not only died for us – he rose from the dead, and there at God’s right hand he stands and pleads for us.

Nothing therefore can come between us and the love of Christ, even if we are troubled or worried, or being persecuted, or lacking food or clothes, or being threatened or even attacked. As scripture promised: For your sake we are being massacred daily, and reckoned as sheep for the slaughter. These are the trials through which we triumph, by the power of him who loved us.

For I am certain of this: neither death nor life, no angel, no prince, nothing that exists, nothing still to come, not any power, or height or depth, nor any created thing, can ever come between us and the love of God made visible in Christ Jesus our Lord.

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Luke 13:31-35

Some Pharisees came up to Jesus. ‘Go away’ they said. ‘Leave this place, because Herod means to kill you.’ He replied, ‘You may go and give that fox this message: Learn that today and tomorrow I cast out devils and on the third day attain my end. But for today and tomorrow and the next day I must go on, since it would not be right for a prophet to die outside Jerusalem.

‘Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you that kill the prophets and stone those who are sent to you! How often have I longed to gather your children, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you refused! So be it! Your house will be left to you. Yes, I promise you, you shall not see me till the time comes when you say:

‘Blessings on him who comes in the name of the Lord!’

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Blessings on him who comes in the name of the Lord!

Growing up, I always heard the phrase “God bless you”.  We say it to someone who just sneezed, to someone who is going to work or somewhere, or to someone who will take an examination.  We say our blessings to each other before and after any activity.  Do we say it because it has been our practice ever since? Or do we really mean to say those blessings to others?

When we say “God bless you” or “God bless”, we are already saying a prayer.  Many would say that they don’t know how to pray.  They don’t realize that they are already actually praying.  We have this connotation that praying is only when we ask God for something.  We sometimes forget that whispering, “Praise the Lord” is already a prayer.  When we say “Thanks be to God”, it is already a prayer.  A prayer should not be a complicated thing.  For starters, let us remember ACTS.  I learned this first from my Mom.  A is for Adoration of our Lord.  It is when we say praise to Him.  C is for Contrition.  It is when we seek forgiveness for our sins.  T is for Thanksgiving.  It is when we show how grateful we are.  S is for Supplication.  It is one of my favourite parts because it is when I ask for all the things that I need.

ACTS is just a guide and we should not be anxious when we pray to God.  It is not a required procedure that we must follow, word for word.  Prayer is a communication with God.  We just talk to Him like how we normally talk to our friends.

Quoting our Psalm today: “Loud thanks to the Lord are on my lips. I will praise him in the midst of the throng…”

(Today’s Oxygen by Beryl Baterina)

Prayer: Father God, please grant us the Holy Spirit and teach us how to pray. Amen.

Thanksgiving:  Thank you Father God for giving us the capability to bless others through our Lord, Jesus Christ.  Amen.

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