Scriptures: Job 1:4-5, 42:2-17
Job interceded for his children by sacrificing a burnt offering after the feast. This was how righteous Job was – he asked for forgiveness in behalf of all his children as a precaution that they might have sinned.
God also told Job’s friends that He is not pleased with how they have slandered God’s name. God said that he will only accept the sacrifice of Job and his prayer on their behalf. Job was kind enough to seek forgiveness for them in spite of them insulting God and him. Job’s prayer was the only prayer acceptable to God.
Are my prayers acceptable to Him? It’s always a heart check, making sure I am not angry with anyone, and there are no idols in my heart.
I should intercede for people more especially when they ask me to pray for them. It has to be immediate. I have to be bolder with praying with people instead of praying in the quiet.
2 Corinthians 1:8-11, 2 Timothy 2:8-13
Persecutions happen to do one thing – increase our dependence on God. Paul was whipped, beaten, stoned, shipwrecked, constantly hunted down, experienced extreme hunger and cold – a life so different from his life as a Pharisee.
I am blessed to be in a country that doesn’t persecute believers. I drive to church every week. I’ve never been whipped (except by my dad’s belt), I’ve never been stoned. Life is easy, and comfortable for the most part, hence my independence from God.
Do I really want an uncomfortable life so that I’ll be passionate for him? Do I need to be shaken to the core? May it never happen. And may I open my eyes to the truth that the entire body of Christ has been suffering persecutions throughout the world.
I pray for a freer world, less pain for Christians and for all. I pray for everyone’s dependence on God even when things are super smooth and easy. I pray for every Christian who cannot even sing a hymn loudly. And for me, may I never take this for granted again. And may I never disown Jesus or be ashamed of Him even in the smallest of ways.
P99M or $5.5M
P99M, this is the Bureau of Customs’s audit and assessment for “various” penalties for 2014-2015 business transactions… as of this morning. This happens year after year and the amount would be haggled and reduced to a smaller, but still two digit number in millions of pesos. What’s important is they reach their “quotas” set by their supervisors – as if operating like a pyramid scam. They’d even issue a receipt for it – which means that the “penalty” is “legal”. The fact that the penalty can be haggled means that they manipulate financial reports to come up with an amount that the company is comfortable with.
P99M is the amount of our payroll for 3 years to feed 130 families. What if we are not able to pay the penalty and have to shut down? Will the government feed our 130 employees and their families?
Do government officials deserve to be prayed for?
Deserve, no. No one deserves anything. It is all by God’s grace. But need, yes.
Scriptures: 1 Timothy 2:1-8, Matthew 5:13-16, Ezekiel 22:30, 2 Chronicles 7:14
Paul instructs us to pray for all authorities so that we may live peaceful lives, in all holiness and godliness. When 1 Timothy was written, the psychotic Emperor Nero was impaling Christians and burning them as human torches. The P99M is nothing compared to the torture that they faced. Yet Paul asked them to pray for kings and all authorities – for this is good and pleasing to Jesus.
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Luke 5:18-26 (NIV)
18 Some men came carrying a paralyzed man on a mat and tried to take him into the house to lay him before Jesus. 19 When they could not find a way to do this because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on his mat through the tiles into the middle of the crowd, right in front of Jesus.
20 When Jesus saw their faith, he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.”
21 The Pharisees and the teachers of the law began thinking to themselves, “Who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
22 Jesus knew what they were thinking and asked, “Why are you thinking these things in your hearts? 23 Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? 24 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.”25 Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God. 26 Everyone was amazed and gave praise to God. They were filled with awe and said, “We have seen remarkable things today.”
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9 For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you.We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, 10 so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12 and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
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