How to Pray When You Hate Your Job

Unfortunately, this article is probably one that many people will need. In fact, I read recently that over 75 percent of employees said that they were unhappy at their jobs. From Crossway………….

https://www.crossway.org/articles/how-to-pray-when-you-hate-your-job/

Transformation of the Mind — Dallas Willard

Transformation of the Mind

The ultimate freedom we have as human beings is the power to select what we will allow our minds to dwell upon. It is in our thoughts that the first movements toward the renovation of the heart occur. Thoughts are the place where we can and must begin to change. There the light of God first begins to move upon us through the word of Christ, and there the divine Spirit begins to direct our will to God and his way. We are not totally free in this respect, but we do have great freedom here. We still have the ability and responsibility to try to retain God in our knowledge. And those who do so will surely make progress toward him; for if we truly do seek God as best we can, He, who always knows what is really in our hearts, will certainly make Himself known to us.

Clearly our thoughts are one of the most basic sources of our life. By “thoughts” we mean all of the ways in which we are conscious of things—and it includes our memories, perceptions, and beliefs. Thoughts determine the orientation of everything we do and evoke the feelings that frame our world and motivate our actions. Interestingly, you can’t evoke thoughts by feeling a certain way. However, we can evoke—and to some degree control—our feelings by directing our thoughts.

Our essential nature as active and creative beings depends upon our ability to envision what is not the case, as well as what is. Our ability to plan for the future must constantly run ahead of reality. And this we do in thought. A will that runs ahead depends, of course, upon our ability to think; and what we think, imagine, believe, or guess sets boundaries to what we can or will choose, and therefore to what we can create.

As our senses present a landscape for our body and its actions, so our thoughts present the “lifescape” for our will and our life as a whole. Within that “thought lifescape,” which includes our perceptions, we make the decisions that determine what we will do and who we will become.

From Renewing the Christian Mind: Essays, Interviews, and Talks. Copyright © 2016 by Willard Family Trust. All rights reserved. Used with permission of HarperCollins Publishers.

The Toughest Critic You’ll Ever Face

This article from apologist Greg Koukl is very important because of the turbulent times we are in the midst of right now. What with the devastation of waves of COVID, political and societal unrest around the world, and even basic questions of identity, reality and meaning — the practice of apologetics is needed now more than ever. But not for other people….for ourselves! From Stand to Reason……………

https://www.str.org/w/the-toughest-critic-you-ll-ever-face

Praying the Names of God: Maon — Dwelling Place

I love the tidbits of information and insight provided in these articles from author and Ann Spangler! Here is a takeaway for me: “The Hebrew Scriptures reveal a God who dwells with his people—first in a tent in the wilderness and then in the Jerusalem temple. The New Testament takes this idea of God’s dwelling place on earth a giant step further by revealing a God who wants to dwell not merely with his people but within his people. Occasionally, Scripture reverses this imagery in a wonderful way by picturing God himself as our Dwelling Place, or Maon (ma-OHN).”

Maon — Dwelling Place

A Bigger Perspective

My wife is a watercolor artist so the analogy in this article really works for me. The advice is that we all need to take a step back from time to time to get a look at the big picture, because a different perspective can help us better appreciate the art that God is making of our lives. From Core Christianity…………………..

Rest for the Soul

Just this title conjures up feelings and images that makes me feel refreshed and renewed. We all could use some rest for our souls, and the Shepherd of our souls provides that rest! From the Mental Health Grace Alliance……………..

BOOK REVIEW: WHEN PRAYER IS A STRUGGLE: A Practical Guide for Overcoming Obstacles in Prayer by Kevin P. Halloran (P & R Publishing; 2021)

Minister, author, and blogger Kevin Halloran has written an eminently helpful and encouraging book on how to handle the most common difficulties with prayer. He covers prayer problems such as being at a loss of what to pray, being hindered by guilt or shame, unable to focus, being too stressed or too busy. Halloran writes on nine of the most common obstacles to prayer reported by laymen and clergy alike as a fellow struggling pray-er so that the reader does not feel either belittled or unusual for needing assistance in developing a healthy and consistent prayer life.

The author begins the book by demonstrating through Scripture why prayer is essential, and the benefits to every believer for persevering through the difficulties often found in praying to God in any kind of meaningful and fulfilling manner. Readers will probably recognize themselves in more than just one of the difficulty areas described and are encouraged to skip around if they wish. Each of the chapters provides doable action plans that are thankfully not very complicated. At the back of the book, Halloran offers a listing of psalms to pray grouped by topic and verses to find the prayers of the Apostle Paul. Finally, he lists many recommended books for those who want to go deeper into the subject of prayer. This is one of the most practical and approachable books on prayer I have read. I highly recommend it!

What Can We Learn from the Roman Centurions in the Bible?

There are some very interesting insights in this article from Crosswalk.com! Here is a tidbit: “In Matthew 8 this centurion understands that Jesus is a man of great power and authority. He has faith that Jesus is able to speak a word and his servant will be healed. This is rather astonishing because up to this point in the narrative Jesus has not healed anyone from a distance. But this centurion seemed to know and believe that Jesus could accomplish whatever He desired.” From Crosswalk.com……………..

https://www.crosswalk.com/faith/bible-study/what-can-we-learn-from-the-roman-centurions-in-the-bible.html