From My Heart

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight. – Proverbs 3:5-6 -NIV

Archive for June, 2011

Whatever you do………..

That’s good enough. I’ve heard that said many times. Even though perfection is sometimes an eluding thing, as Christians I believe that scripture is clear we should strive to do our best in everything we do. No matter who we are serving here on earth we should always have the mindset that we are serving our Lord. After all our actions reflect on Him always.
After I read Oswald Chambers the other day a thought really resonated with me. Jesus calls me friend. I should stand loyal to Him. His honor is at stake in my life. If I do a task sloppily it reflects poorly on my friend (Jesus).
The Proverbs 31 woman knows that if it isn’t excellent she shouldn’t set it out for sale. She knows that her work reflects on her husband and her God.
1 Corinthians 10:31 says it well, “Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”
Our actions should reflect Colossians 3:23 “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.”
Everything we do or don’t do reflects on our attitude toward God. Our every move is a testimony to our love for God. People see it in us and know that they can depend on us because we depend on Him. There is no such thing as “good enough”.

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In Jesus’ Name

“And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.” John 14:13-14
These verses are a wonderful promise! We often read them without careful thought of the context, and we dream of the endless possibilities of that word anything.
Some misapply this verse, thinking that saying “in Jesus’ name” at the end of a prayer results in God’s always granting what is asked for. This is in reality using the words “in Jesus’ name” as a magic formula; like rubbing a magic lamp so that the genie of God will suddenly appear and do all that we ask! This is absolutely unbiblical.
I have no objection to people adding these words to their prayers. But there are many prayers with those words tacked onto the end that are not prayed in Jesus’ name at all.
In some cases we tack on “in Jesus’ name” out of habit without giving it a conscious thought. Many of us are taught from early childhood to end our prayers in this way. We say it so casually just as we would say goodbye to someone. Praying in Jesus name should not be taken casually; it’s a serious matter.
So what does praying in Jesus’ name mean?
Jesus Christ has given Christians the right and authority to use his name. Liken it to a power of attorney given from one person to another. Legally, power of attorney is the authority to act in another person’s behalf, at their request. So, one person (Jesus) permitting another (Christians) to take action on his (Jesus Christ’s) behalf. Praying in Jesus’ name should be praying according to the will of Jesus.
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him” (1 John 5:14-15). Praying in Jesus’ name is praying for things that will honour and glorify Jesus.
Saying “in Jesus’ name” at the end of a prayer is not a magic formula. Some believe that when we claim the name of Jesus we should have everything go our way. Life should be trouble-free and we will have everything we wish for. That is not the case at all. If what we ask for is something that is not for God’s glory and according to His will, saying “in Jesus’ name” is meaningless. The heart behind your prayer is what is key. Are you seeking to ultimately bring glory to God? It is not the words in the prayer that matter, but the purpose behind the prayer. Praying for things that are in agreement with God’s will is the essence of praying in Jesus’ name.
Our heavenly Father will listen to sincere prayers that stem from an open and honest heart; a heart to glorify Him. There are no magic words, no need to even to speak out loud. He knows our thoughts, He knows our pain, He simply wants us to come to Him. Just like a loving parent loves to speak with their child.
No motive is hidden and every thought clear to our Father. Our thoughts that come straight from the heart are heard. In Jesus’ Name!
David said it so well in Psalm 141:2
“Let my prayer be set before You as incense, The lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.”