A Prayer for a Husband — Going Out, Not Knowing Where You’re Going

Read Through the Bible in 2 Years: Proverbs 3:9-10; Genesis 12-13

"Now the LORD said to Abram, "Go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you." - Genesis 12:1 ESV

Abram, too, finds his way into the Hebrews Hall of Faith, like Abel and Noah that we read about recently.

"By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going." - Hebrews 11:8 ESV

In reading Genesis 12-13, I wanted to either focus on Abram failing to protect his beautiful wife from the advances of the Pharaoh or on Abram choosing to trust God and go out to an unknown land.

But, instead, I’m going to choose Door #3, that in spite of Abram’s great shortcomings, he was God’s chosen man called for a specific purpose. Like Noah, a righteous man, chosen by God for a great purpose who became drunk with wine shortly after surviving the worldwide flood, Abram obeys God in going out to this new place, yet he gives way to fear.

Like we read in Ephesians 2:8-10, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”

From Abel to Noah to Abram to Bill and Kim Endraske, each of us have been saved by our faith, not by our works. Yet our faith will lead us to do works of faith, whether in offering good sacrifices, or building big boats, or going out to foreign lands, or writing blogs one-day-at-a-time, may we walk faithfully with our God.

Let’s pray together.

Heavenly Father,

Thank You for the precious gift of faith. You did not choose me because of any deed that I had done. In fact, You cast Your eyes and Your love upon me while I was Your enemy. You called me and chose me and drew me and put faith into me … and all I can say is THANK YOU!

Lord, I pray for my husband to hear You loud and clear. Help him to be strong and courageous and not to be afraid. Help him to resist the temptation to take the easy way out. Father, I pray that You will be faithful to complete the good work that You have begun in him. Direct his steps and protect him from the schemes and lies of the evil one. Give him the strength and wisdom to follow You. Help him to know Your Word and hear Your voice as You lead him.

Father, help us as wives to submit to our husbands, not to fear anything that is frightening. Encourage us to sit daily at Your feet, that we might trust You when life is scary. Help us to keep a careful watch over our mouths and our minds, thinking and speaking the truth in love. Make us godly helpmeets, doing good to our husbands all the days of his life, so that his heart can trust us and he will have no lack of gain.

Lord, we submit to You and Your will for our lives. We will go where you send us, when you send us, trusting that Your ways and thoughts are always better than ours.

In the Good and Sovereign Name of Jesus we pray, Amen.

Three Brothers and a Prayer for our Children

Read through the Bible in 2 Years: Psalm 15, Genesis 9:18-10:32

"O LORD, who shall sojourn in your tent? Who shall dwell on your holy hill? 
He who walks blamelessly and does what is right and speaks truth in his heart; 
who does not slander with his tongue and does no evil to his neighbor, nor takes up a reproach against his friend; 
in whose eyes a vile person is despised, but who honors those who fear the LORD; 
who swears to his own hurt and does not change; 
who does not put out his money at interest and does not take a bribe against the innocent. 
He who does these things shall never be moved." - Psalm 15:1-5 ESV
"And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father and told his two brothers outside. Then Shem and Japheth took a garment, laid it on both their shoulders, and walked backward and covered the nakedness of their father. Their faces were turned backward, and they did not see their father’s nakedness." - Genesis 9:22-23 ESV

Earlier this week we read about two brothers: Cain and Abel. Today we read about three brothers: Shem, Ham, and Japheth, from whom every man and woman alive today are descended.

Three sons born of the same mom and dad. Three sons of righteous Noah. Three sons who saw the world destroyed in a worldwide flood. Three sons who survived in an ark built by their faithful father who heard from God and obeyed.

Yet, one son became a snitch who dishonored his dad while the other two sons chose humility and honor.

Why?

Why do some of our children walk blamelessly, doing right and speaking truth while others slander and do evil?

Why do some honor those who fear the Lord while others honor the vile and wicked?

I wish I had an answer but I don’t. What I do know, though, is that God is good and all-knowing and all-powerful. He has a plan and purpose through it all and He is working behind the scenes in His perfect timing and wisdom to accomplish good.

Like A.W. Tozer wrote in his classic book, Knowledge of the Holy, “All God’s acts are done in perfect wisdom, first for His own glory, and then for the highest good of the greatest number for the longest time. And all His acts are as pure as they are wise, and as good as they are wise and pure. Not only could His acts not be better done: a better way to do them could not be imagined.”

If you struggle with this, too, I suggest you read Romans 9 which addresses some of this issue.

Let’s pray together.

Heavenly Father,

We know that You alone are always good, always wise, and always in charge. We lay our questions and struggles at Your feet. We choose to trust You in things that we don’t understand.

We also choose to lay our children at Your feet, trusting You to work for their good. Please, Father, save our children from their own selfish pride and sinfulness. Open their eyes to see You and to see their need for salvation.

We pray that You will make us godly examples for our children. Keep us from drunkenness. Help us to be sober-minded and self-controlled. We want to be filled with Your Holy Spirit, walking by faith and living pure and holy lives.

Please protect our children from pride and jealousy and strife. Guide them to the truth that You bless the meek and humble. Remind them that love covers a multitude of sins.

In the Name of our Merciful and Wise Lord Jesus Christ, Amen.

A Cord of Three Strands

If you’ve ever spent more than a few hours with me, you’ve probably seen me whip my hair back into a simple little braid. While together with family for the Christmas holiday, I asked someone (I can’t remember who ☺️) if they could do that and they replied that, no, they couldn’t, it must be a special thing for my curly hair.

So, yesterday, while getting my hair out of my face by quickly braiding three strands of my fine, curly hair behind my head, I suddenly remembered Ecclesiastes 4:12 ESV, “A threefold cord is not quickly broken.”

But, then, my mind went to this — that three-fold cord takes effort to stay tight, to stay woven and together. I can’t just throw my hair up in a braid and expect it to stay for the rest of the day or week or month. This reminds me that my relationship with God, my relationship with my husband, or my sister, or my children, or a good friend, needs attention to remain tightly held together. Something to ponder.

Father, please help me to abide in You, to hold fast to you, to cling to you. Help me to weave myself into Bill’s life and to be his faithful helper. Grant me your strength to love others and to serve them by your love abiding in me. Thank you for giving me Your Spirit and for the promise that You will never leave me or forsake me. Help me to hear Your voice and to walk step by step holding onto Your loving hand. By the Grace of Jesus, I pray. Amen.

“And though a man might prevail against one
who is alone, two will withstand him
a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”

Ecclesiastes 4:12 ESV

Ecclesiastes 4:12 KJV “And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”

Ecclesiastes 4:12 NLT “A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.”

#PrayforCollierville

My heart goes out to everyone in my town of Collierville, Tennessee, following the tragic shooting that took place yesterday in our local grocery store.

I wish I could more, but I can pray and I can share the gospel. I want to do what God has equipped me to do.

Please pray for the friends and families of those who were shot as well as the shooter.

Please pray for the first responders and law enforcement officers working on the case.

Please pray for the Christians and churches in our area to be a beacon of light and hope in the darkness.

Please pray for revival all across our country and our world.

Come quickly, Lord, and in the meantime strengthen us to be about our Father’s business of sharing the good news of the gospel and making disciples.

A prayer for my grandbaby

I pray that you know how deep and wide and long and high is the love of Jesus.

I pray that you know the greatness of our God – from His mighty power and perfect holiness to His personal closeness and faithful love.

I pray that you know that God has a unique purpose for your life.

No matter what happens, no matter how hard life gets, I pray that you will always remember that God is always, always good. May your faith in Him grow as you grow. May you trust Him with every part of your life every day of your life.

I pray that you cast all your cares on Him – from the biggest to the smallest – knowing that He cares for you.

I pray that you will give thanks in all circumstances – not because the circumstances are good, but because God is good. God has created you at just the right time, in just the right place, and with just the right parents, but sometimes your parents are going to blow it. They’re going to mess things up like their parents before them and their parents before them and their parents before them. I pray that you will know that you have a Heavenly Father who is perfect in all of His ways and who is always there for you and always there for them, too.

I pray that your parents will be quick to see and confess their faults, and be quick to turn to God in their sins and shortcomings. May your parents have humble hearts toward one another, toward you, and toward God.

Baby, I pray that you will be quick to forgive those who hurt you, even your mom and dad. You can only do this, Baby, when you realize how much God loves you and how much He loves to forgive you. God loved you before you were born, before you’d taken a breath, before you’d had a chance to do even one good thing. In fact, God loved you even before He created you, before He knit you together in your mother’s womb.

You are not an accident. You are a unique, purposeful creation of the Most High God of the Universe.

God will give you unique skills and interests, and I pray that you will use those skills and interests for His glory. Wherever you live and whatever you do, may you live for the glory of God – giving thanks to Him for everything that you receive because our Father is a good Father who gives us these gifts to enjoy, for our pleasure and for His fame and glory.

I pray that you will know Jesus.

I pray that you will know all about Jesus, about His birth, His life, His goodness, His teachings, His death, and His resurrection. But I also pray that you will know Jesus – like a friend who is always there for you, who sticks closer than a brother, who walks with you on the lonely roads and busy streets of life, who talks with you in quiet closets and noisy rooms, who is your best and closest counselor, speaking words of life and wisdom every day.

May you hear His still, small voice above all the others. May you hear clearly the voice of your Lord and King saying, “This is the way: Walk in it.”

And may you obey Him. May you follow Him as a faithful sheep, discerning His voice among all the cacophony of thousands of voices screaming out at you in this world. Jesus is the way, the only way. Jesus is the truth, the source of truth. Jesus is the life. He is the giver of life, Baby. Turn to Him and follow Him, and it will go well with you even when life isn’t really going so well.

I pray that your life will be filled with Joy and Peace and Hope and Purpose. But I also pray that you will know that these are only truly found at the feet of Jesus.

I pray that your heart would be kept free from idols. I pray that you would diligently keep your life free from the love of money, of fame, of power and selfish ambition, of worldly pursuits and people pleasing, of thinking too highly of yourself and not highly enough of others.

Look to Jesus. Jesus is our perfect example. He has gone before us and shown us the way. Jesus left heaven, HEAVEN, to be born as a helpless little baby – like you. Jesus gave up His glory and His throne, to live among common men and women like your mom and dad, and your grandma and grandpa.

Jesus loved people. Always. Jesus told the truth. Always. Jesus told the truth with love. Always.

I pray this for you. May you love truth and love people. May you love God’s Word, our fountain of truth and our fountain of love, and our source of wisdom for life.

Jesus was humble. Jesus, the great and glorious King of kings and Lord of lords, listened to the very people He had made. Jesus, the sinless Savior and sacrificial Lamb of God, went willingly to the cross to die a sinner’s death in place of sinful man. Jesus willingly gave up His own life that we could have life eternal and life to the full.

Baby, I pray that you would have that kind of spirit, a humble, gentle, willing, selfless spirit.

Jesus was bold. Jesus spoke boldly and loved boldly. Jesus didn’t follow the crowd. Jesus led the crowd, or Jesus left the crowd. Beware of the self-righteous. Beware of the wolves in sheep’s clothing. Jesus spoke earnestly with the Samaritan woman at the well, an outcast, a sinner. Jesus touched the hearts, minds, and lives of broken people like you and me.

I pray that you would be a bold, sacrificial leader for God’s kingdom, following Jesus rather than the crowds.

I pray that you will have the strength and fortitude of Daniel and his three friends, standing strong for what is right despite the risk.

I pray that you would have the wisdom of Esther, discerning right from wrong and using your life to serve others rather than your self.

I pray that you would have the righteousness of Job, holding fast to your integrity and your Savior, no matter the tests and trials that come your way.

I pray that you would have the tender heart of David, repenting time and time again of your own sins even at great personal expense.

I pray that you would have the integrity of Joseph, trusting in God’s good, loving will and choosing what you know is right, even when all of life’s circumstances are pointing you the other way.

May you know that no matter how often you mess up, no matter how often you go astray like a foolish little sheep, that you have a praying grandma who loves you, who’s in your corner, who’s cheering for you.

By the grace and love and power and strength that is ours in the Mighty Name of Jesus I pray.

Amen.

What will we do with our Freedom?

“Many are my persecutors and my adversaries, but I do not swerve from your testimonies.” Psalm 119:157 ESV

Excerpt from The Insanity of God – Nik Ripken

“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

“You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.

“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”

Matthew 5:10-16 ESV

Please watch the full movie or order a copy of the DVD.

Please pick up a copy of the riveting true book, The Insanity of God, by Nik Ripken

Please commit to pray daily for our brothers and sisters who are living under daily persecution, as well as those brothers and sisters who remain silent despite their freedom. God help us all.

Father, strengthen us. Grow our faith. Help us to be confirmed to the image of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, to love others, to seek out the lost, to share the good news of the gospel for those who are perishing.

Let us not be ashamed of the gospel for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. Lord, you have not given us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.

Let us be willing to share in suffering for the gospel by the power You give us, for You saved us and called us to a HOLY calling, not because of our works but because of Your own purpose and grace, which You gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began! Thank You for giving us Your grace. Thank You for giving us purpose! Thank You for your LOVE!

In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.

Waiting and Watching

Our huge lab-poodle-aussie, Kylo, absolutely adores my younger daughter. He will sit and wait for her, watching where she went. It’s so sweet.

Are we waiting and watching like that? Do we have that kind of love? That kind of faith?

Heavenly Father, help me to watch for you, trusting you and waiting expectantly for Your return!


Blessed is the one who listens to me, watching daily at my gates, waiting beside my doors. Proverbs 8:34 ESV

Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning, and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the wedding feast, so that they may open the door to him at once when he comes and knocks. Luke 12:35-36 ESV

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. Titus 2:11-14 ESV

And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him. Hebrews 9:27-28 ESV

Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace. And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him. 2 Peter 3:11-15 ESV

Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, you have no need to have anything written to you. For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. But you are not in darkness, brothers, for that day to surprise you like a thief. For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness. So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober. 1 Thessalonians 5:1-6 ESV

A simple, but powerful, way to read through the Bible – John 6

I share with you one simple way that I’ve found to really personalize and apply the scripture that I’m reading that day.

Read through the Bible, one book at a time, one chapter (or a portion of a chapter) each day. Each day, choose one specific verse that really speaks to you that day and use that verse to write out a prayer.

Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you are seeking me not because you saw the signs, but because you ate your fill of loaves.”

John 6:26

Father, I want to follow You because it is true, because I believe, because You are REAL. You are the true and living God, not a figment of my imagination, not my fairy godmother, not a genie in a bottle. I don’t want to pray to you like I’m wishing on a star or on my birthday candles. You are not the God of “cross my fingers” and hope You will give me whatever I ask for.

I see you and I follow you because you are REAL and Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God. You have opened my eyes and I can never go back. I pray that you will use my life, my words and my testimony to spread the good new of the gospel and bring many to know the truth of Jesus.

In the name of Jesus I pray, Amen.

A prayer of worship, and a prayer for strength – from Romans 11:33-36

“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! “For who has known the mind of the Lord,
or who has been his counselor?” “Or who has given a gift to him
that he might be repaid?” For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.” Romans 11:33-36 ESV —