pride (4)

Much is being written here and elsewhere these days about praying for our country.  Good thoughts, wisdom shared, encouragement and hope given.  Hopefully, we're praying even more than we're writing about prayer.

I wanted to take a minute to contrast two approaches that I've personally experienced to praying for our country. 

  • Pride brings God the answers and asks him to act on them; humility brings God questions and asks for his wisdom.
  • Pride tells God who needs to be elected or which party should be in or out of power; humility seeks God's intervention to raise up righteous leaders of his choosing.
  • Pride calls down God's judgment on people who believe or act in ways we consider immoral (and that even ARE immoral); humility seeks God's grace, forgiveness and cleansing for those who live far from his will, recognizing that we also once lived outside his will and saving grace.
  • Pride makes the assumption of the Pharisee - that we are in the right and that God should recognize that; humility recognizes with the tax collector that we are wrong and in need of God's grace.
  • Pride shouts; humility pleads.
  • Pride calls us to tell God the way things are going in our nation and in our world; humility causes us to seek his wisdom and strength to change them.
  • Pride focuses our thoughts on the changes other people need to make; humility confesses the changes we need to make.

I have prayed both ways.  By God's grace - and in his infinite patience - I'm slowly learning to pray less from pride and more from humility. 

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What Should We Repent Of As a Nation?


The work of Wheatland Ministries involves research in learning how to best pray and be involved in intercessory prayer.

I am currently reading the book the Harbinger by Jonathan Cahn. In it he identifies 3 spirits affecting our nation, which are the spirits of Defiance, Pride, and Arrogance. I mention them, because we seen many saying we need to repent--and that is in scripture--but there is a question--do we know what we are repenting of?--especially as a nation.

Research is one way we can identify how to pray. What we pray for should be in agreement with scripture.  These three spirits listed above are related to pride, and there is much scripture about pride, and the problems of pride.  A heart full of pride does not seek the Lord. 

This week (week of July 4, 2014) there has been a call to prayer by the National Day of Prayer Task Force-I encourage you to consider what is shared in this blog, and to search for even other things we as a nation need to repent of.

Some may not understand why repentance is so-o-o-o important.There is a verse found in II Chronicles 7:14: If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.


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In Matthew 6, Jesus instructs and models how to pray.  He shows how we can connect with the heart of God through worship and adoration (hallowing, or exalting, God's name above our own and all others).  He points us to pray for God's will to be done here one earth, as His will is currently being done in heaven.  He directs us to pray that our daily needs are met in Him.  Jesus also shows us how we can pray for our sins/debts to be forgiven- as well as seeking God to help us forgive others who have sinned against us.  Lastly, Jesus shows us that we can pray for wisdom when it comes to dealing with temptation(s), as well as God's strength in overcoming temptations of all kinds.

Twice, in Luke 22:39-46, Jesus instructs his disciples to pray that they would not fall into temptation. 

Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and his disciples followed him.
40 On reaching the place, he said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.” 41 He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, 42 “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” 43 An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. 44 And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.

45 When he rose from prayer and went back to the disciples, he found them asleep, exhausted from sorrow. 46 “Why are you sleeping?” he asked them. “Get up and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.”

Whether we like it or not, temptations come our way.  We are naturally weak (prone to a variety of hungers, anger, loneliness, tiredness, and more)- no matter how strong we think we might be on our own.  Temptations work on our insufficiencies, and in a strange way, can especially work on us in areas where/when we feel self-sufficient (exposing our pride or lusts).

Temptations give us an opportunity to choose between trusting or leaning on our own perceived strengths, knowledge, or understanding, or to turn to Jesus' all-knowing (omniscient) and all-powerful (omnipotent), Self.  When we turn to Jesus, He empowers us to press through and past the temptation; to see God as greater than the temptation, and help us overcome the thought or matter.

Notice, that when facing temptation, our way of escape is to turn to, lean upon, and focus on Jesus; not to dwell or focus on the temptation or circumstance itself.  Doing the latter will only make it seem more overwhelming and make us focus on our own weakness or inability to overcome the matter in our own ways- thus making it easier to cave in to, or under the weight of the temptation itself.

Turning our focus on God, zeroing in on Him, His Word, and the ministry of His Holy Spirit, helps fill our focus and attention with the One who is greater than all; the One who sent His only Son as a perfect, unblemished, sacrifice for all mankind- that fully and permanently defeated sin, death, and the devil- after being tempted in every way as we are.

Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil—
15 and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. 16 For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham’s descendants. 17 For this reason he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. 18 Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.
  - Hebrews 2:14-18

Praying for Teens

Teenagers, as we all, are tempted daily to set ourselves, our motivations, goals, desires, and more ahead of God.  Narcissism, exalting of others and things, and more, are constantly working to turn and tear people, young and old, away from focusing upon God alone.

Parents, grandparents, and Christians of all ages and backgrounds, often struggle how to pray for children, youth, and teenagers.

It's important that we make and keep God as the first and only center of our prayers.  There are many things working to turn our attention, focus, even our prayers, and ability to pray, away from Him and His Word.

Bob Hostetler offers 31 ways to pray for your teen (or a teenager you know or see around you).  His first prayer point is vital to pray; and the Scriptures that each prayer point is focused or centered upon are worth looking up, reading, and praying through individually beyond simply praying or parroting what he's written!

Praying for Your Teen is a link with additional Scripture-based prayer points to help focus on praying for teens.  A statement in the article, "There is a myth that teenagers cannot practice self-control, that the teenage and young adult years are the time for "sewing wild oats", and Scriptures refuting that idea, are also valuable.

As you'll see as you read and pray through many of the Scriptures and prayer points offered in these links, you may also find that you pray some of these points for yourself and your personal walk with Jesus Christ.  That's perfectly okay!

God often does His greatest work of answered prayer in the heart of the person praying- although He often reveals ways He's answered our prayers for others in their lives/circumstances as well.  Our personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ is our most valuable possession- and it's one of, if not THE most valuable possession to God as well.  Let's continue seeking and pressing into Him through today, tonight, and the day(s) to come.  Whether we focus our prayers on children, teens, ourselves, or others, we won't be disappointed as we turn to God as our Rock, Center, Stronghold, and more!

In His grip,

Rob Griepentrog

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Hearing The Spirit's Voice

How do we hear the Spirit’s voice today? He generally speaks to us through scripture, a sermon, a book, a movie, a song or even a dream, but He also speaks directly into our spirit by His still, small voice! “Holy Spirit intuition” is a God-given gift to all who have spiritual ears to hear what the Lord is saying at any given time for any particular situation that requires His guidance, approval or command. It is the supernatural ability to know right from wrong—truth from error—God’s leading from your leading, which seldom makes sense to our natural minds!

Intuition simply means “knowing or sensing something without reason”. Jesus declared seven times in the opening chapters of Revelation a foundational rule of Kingdom living that never fails to keep us or to take us where we are to be, doing what we are called to be doing.“He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit is saying unto the churches”. What is the Spirit saying at this present time to His Church? Well, for one, He’s enforcing His certain threat to resist the proud and give grace to the humble. He’s counseling us to get the stinking pride out of our lives and ministries as God prepares to shake all things that can be shaken, and woe to all the “spiritually superior” celebrity preachers and TV evangelists who defiantly continue to walk in arrogance as they proudly build their own extravagant kingdom against the Spirit’s warning when God’s judgment falls. Pride goes before destruction and Jesus is returning for a beautiful Bride clothed in humility, not haughtiness.

Pride was Lucifer’s downfall to disgrace and damnation and he uses the same spirit of arrogance today to delude all who will listen to his lying voice—the same insinuating voice that deceived Eve into falling into the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. Adam & Eve’s spiritual intuition became corrupted by satanic logic and rationality. For that very reason, genuine, spiritual impressions are hard to explain to the average, lukewarm christian, whose typical response to your intuitive step of faith, whether spoken or thought is “How do you really know this is what God is wanting you to do? This makes no sense! Just who do you think you are—a prophet or something? Come back down to earth!” Sometimes your only answer is a direct “I just feel it in my spirit!” Unspiritual, rational christians don’t like that kind of a smug answer! Where’s the logic? Where’s the responsibility? Where’s the common sense? And yet you know that you’ve heard the unmistakeable voice of the Holy Spirit! Go confidently from there, alone if need be.

There are times, however, when your intuition may not be crystal clear. In matters of uncertainty, the Bible tells us in 1John 4:1 to test the spirits to see if they are from God—how do we do that? The following are seven considerations in testing spiritual impressions.

1. Does this impression line up with God’s Word or does it plainly contradict its obvious teaching? The Bible always takes precedent over thoughts, feelings and voices.

2. Will the carrying out of this impression bring honour to Christ? Would Jesus approve?

3. Does this impression bear witness with my spirit, or does it make me sick to my stomach? “The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God” (Romans 8:16)

4. Does this impression bring peace and excitement or confusion and fear? “God is not author of confusion, but peace” (1Corinthians 14:33)

5. Does this impression leave me with a clear conscience? “Pray for us: for we trust we have a good conscience, in all things willing to live honestly” (Hebrews 13:18)

6. Do my pastor and my trusted Christian advisors agree that this impression is of the Lord? “In the multitude of counsellors there is safety” (Proverbs 11:14)

7. Is this impression staying with me over time or is it a fleeting emotion?

As you pray and quiet your thoughts, expect the Spirit to respond in His still, small voice with the very direction that you are seeking. Jesus assures us in John 10:27, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow Me” Amen!

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