The Journey Thoughts

January 3, 2017

You are a conqueror! Because of your faith in Christ, you have been given
the right to be a conqueror. But what exactly is a conqueror?  In the 5th
Chapter of 1 John, we read: "Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Messiah
has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father also loves the one
born of Him. This is how we know that we love God's children when we love
God and obey His commands. For this is what love for God is: To keep His
commands. Now His commands are not a burden, because whatever has been born
of God conquers the world. This is the victory that has conquered the world:
our faith. And who is the one who conquers the world but the one who
believes that Jesus is the Son of God." 1 John 5:1-5   I was reading an
article yesterday that said, the most persecuted group of people on the
earth today, are Christians.  When I read that, I was cut to the heart,
because, you see, we all live here pretty comfortable, and the persecution
is small and minor compared to some places in this world.  But have we
become desensitized to the plight of other believers?  Have we stopped
praying for believers everywhere for their persecution is great?   We, as
believers in Christ, have the love of Christ within us, and that love should
be especially for all the saints, yet do we even take the time to think
about them?  I have this heavy burden that is eating away at my soul about
the need to pray for other believers.  Sure, we are to pray for the lost,
yet they are not the ones being persecuted.  They are lost and wandering,
but the laborers are being killed and tortured for their faith.   If it were
the other way around, and we were the ones being persecuted physically, I
would want others to be lifting me up in prayer, because of the great need
for intervention.  John says, "For this is what love for God is: to keep His
commands.  What are the commands He is talking about? Before Jesus left this
earth, He told His disciples: "This is My command: Love one another as I
have loved you. No one has greater love than this, that someone would lay
down his life for his friends. You are My friends if you do what I command
you." John 15:12-14  Shortly after Jesus told this to His disciples, He
prayed, first for Himself, then for His immediate disciples, then for us,
those who would come to believe by the message of God.  At the end of His
prayer for us, He prays this: "I made Your name known to them and will make
it known, so the love You have loved Me with may be in them and I may be in
them." John 17:26   My brothers and sisters in Christ, we are made new; we
have become a different person because of Christ being in us, and with us.
We have been given His love, and that love is for Him, and all who call on
His name.  There should be no complacency, for when one hurts we all hurt.
When one is persecuted, we are all persecuted.  When one is healed, we all
feel the healing, as well, as the pain.  Have you ever felt the pain of
another?  I have, and it should break our hearts that our brothers and
sisters over this world are suffering for being related to Jesus, and they
are related to Him, and also to us.  We should realize that we too, share in
the burden of our brothers and sisters, and bring a petition to Him daily
for those who suffer because of Christ. That's the command; that's the love
of God found in Christ, and that's the love of Christ found in us.  So what
do you say, let's be in prayer daily for those who stand strong in Christ,
and feel the pain of suffering.  They are on the front lines in the battle,
and we need to uphold them, to encourage them to be strong, and to fight the
good fight, for it may be us next, who need the prayers. We are conquerors,
and the reinforcements of prayer that help hold up those weary from the

Pastor Andy

Heavenly Father, forgive me for being so complacent about the great need of
my brothers and sisters over this world.  I know we are to remember them to
You. Your prayer for us was that we be one as You and the Son are One.
Lord, make us one with each other, so that we see the Son in them, and that
we can lift them in prayer to You, Father, and that we keep them lifted to
You.  They have taken a stand, that even in the face of death, they remain
faithful, and I pray that they will stand at the appointed time. I pray that
we will stand daily in that way, that brings glory and honor to Your Holy
name.  I pray for strength that You would heal, strengthen and show them
Your glory, that they would see You.  I pray also for these that are daily
lifted up.  Some of they are Yours already, and some don't know You, but I
pray for them to be strengthened and are brought to the place of
understanding Your great grace.   I pray today for: The Schneider family,
Dwight and Sammi, Clara, Cathy, Shannon, Roy, Brent's grandfather, Starla's
mother, Michele, Carol, Gene, Terry, Angie, Isabel, Pam, William, Carrie,
Ada, Rheba, Mary, Veronica, Douglas, Fritz, Dan, Dillon, Tara, Kristena,
Kristen, Don, Carolyn, Jackie Ann, Mike S., Barbara, Candace, Meredith, Abe,
Ramona, Ben, BJ, Ida, JV, Nada, Eva, Kelly and her son, Corbin, Robert, Pat,
Ryan, Fred, Dotty, Scott, April, Tracy, Abraham, Elijah, Japheth, Matt, Liz,
Matt, Bethany, Mike, Megan, Jeff, Laura, Tim, Carmello, Kaitlyn, Alex, Ken,
Lynette, Patrick, Kathy, Jennifer, Montella, Nancy, June, Pastor Berkey,
Harriet, Shelbi, Fisher, Marlaina, Cynthia, Loren, Mike, Pam, Jerry, Gary,
Diane. Lord, instill in us this great love You have for us, and may we see
Your glory, and the need of our brothers and sisters all over, who need our
prayers.  I pray this in Jesus name.

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