Pragmatic Communion

pragmatic living in the presence of God

one minute with God: Jude 1:20-21

a Quote:
“. . . daily prayer and religious readings and churchgoing are necessary parts of the Christian life. We have to be continually reminded of what we believe. Neither this belief nor any other will automatically remain alive in the mind. It must be fed. And as a matter of fact, if you examined a hundred people who had lost their faith in Christianity, I wonder how many of them would turn out to have been reasoned out of it by honest argument? Do not most people simply drift away?”
from Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis

my Prayer:
Lord, I don’t ever want to drift away from you. I don’t want to ever forget you. And yet, as I pray this so sincerely, I also know, without a shadow of a doubt, that in the not too distant future, I will forget you for an entire day. I will, out of the blue, probably with no definitive cause, go through an entire day without devoting even one moment of thought to you. So I pray that you won’t let me forget for two days in a row. Because it could lead to three. And then I’m the prodigal. Again.

Thank you for your Word. Thank you for my propensity to journal. Thank you for teaching me how to abide. Please help me to stop rambling on and on during my prayer times and abide MORE. Thank you for my love of reading. Thank you for the writers who draw me closer to you through their vulnerability and frankness. Thank you for your Holy Spirit, moving in me to bring me back into fellowship with you when I’ve forgotten you again.

Thank you for your stubborn love.

the Word: But you, dear friends, carefully build yourselves up in this most holy faith by praying in the Holy Spirit, staying right at the center of God’s love, keeping your arms open and outstretched, ready for the mercy of our Master, Jesus Christ. This is the unending life, the real life!
Jude 1:20-21 (The Message)

This was dual published on my main blog: Pragmatic Compendium blog.

August 31, 2010 Posted by | bible, books, christian living, devotions, prayer, spiritual growth, two minutes with God | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

one minute with God: 1 Corinthians 1:10

a Quote:
“Instead, make it your goal to love those who disagree with you. Go for the love, not the win.”

“We don’t always have to agree to get along. Our verse today says, “Let there be real harmony.” In an orchestra, there’s a big difference between unison and harmony. If all the musicians played in unison all the time, the music would get pretty boring. It’s the harmony that creates beauty in music, with different players playing different instruments and different notes, but all under the same direction of one conductor. The goal of each musician is not to play louder than the others or to finish the piece first; the goal is to ‘be of one mind, united in thought and purpose.‘”
from Better Together: What on Earth Are We Here For? Devotional and Journal edited by Rick Warren

my Prayer:
Lord, please help me find harmony with the cranky person I have to work with today. Please bless me with patience and a calm temperament. Please remind me to pause and respond instead of react when he speaks condescendingly and sarcastically. Thank you for the discernment you’ve already given me. Thank you for showing me that source of crankiness has little to do with the work, and more to do with his fear of losing credibility with our mutual client. Please break down our pride – both of us, so that we can work together, bringing the best of both of our capabilities to solve our client’s problem. Regardless of whether he is a Christian, please open his mind and make him receptive to this idea of combining our knowledge openly with the common goal of serving. Please let my freakish love of harmony cross over from my music to my work today.

the Word: I beg of you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ to stop arguing among yourselves. Let there be real harmony so that there won’t be splits in the church. I plead with you to be of one mind, united in thought at purpose.
1 Corinthians 1:10 (LB)

This was dual published on my Pragmatic Compendium blog.

August 27, 2010 Posted by | bible, books, christian living, devotions, patience, prayer, spiritual growth, two minutes with God | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

one minute with God: 1 Corinthians 14:22

a Quote:
We want to know what extraordinary deed we can perform for God sometime in the future – the ephemeral “will of God” that we seek to discover. But it is not the big things we want to do with such bravura but the little things we do every day that constitute His true will. God wants us to practice daily obedience. Such obedience requires attentiveness to God in our present circumstances”

“. . . spiritual grown does not require replacing daily tasks with more “spiritual” duties; rather, it depends on changing our attitude about our mundane work.”

“Routine engenders fortitude in the face of difficulty, gratitude to God for the ordinary blessings of life, love for people whom we are serving, joy in doing a job well done.”
The Will of God as a Way of Life: How to Make Every Decision with Peace and Confidence by Jerry Sittser

my Prayer:
Lord, thank you for my ordinary life. Thank you for the routines that, when I pay attention, are evidence of overwhelming blessing. Loading the dishwasher full of dirty dishes is evidence that my family is well fed. Paying the electric bill is evidence that our home is a provision safety and comfort. The hours I spend driving my children around is necessary because I HAVE two wonderful children. When I pick up my husband’s dry cleaning it shows we are thoughtful of one another after 20 years of marriage. All these, and many other mundane, routine tasks are in my day because of your blessings. Thank you.

Please, Lord, as I pray for you to allow me to serve you more in a faith based speaking ministry, please let me spend my days faithfully serving you right where I am NOW. I’m where I am today because you want me here. Please don’t let me miss opportunities to serve you today because I’m focused on something in the future, which may not even be your will for my life.

the Word:
But in the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue.
Ephesians 3:17-19 (NIV)

This was dual published on my Pragmatic Communion blog.

August 25, 2010 Posted by | bible, books, christian living, devotions, gratitude, prayer, two minutes with God | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

one minute with God: Philippians 2:15

a Quote:
“Moral authority is the credibility you earn by walking your talk. It is the relationship other people see between what you say and what you do, between what you claim to be and what you are . . . There is an alignment between conviction and action, belief and behavior . . .

Nothing compensates for moral authority. No amount of communication skills, wealth, accomplishment, education, talent or position can make up for a lack of moral authority. We all know plenty of people who have those qualities but who exercise no influence over us whatsoever. Why? Because there is a contradiction between what they claim to be and what we perceive them to be.” Visioneering: God’s Blueprint for Developing and Maintaining Vision by Andy Stanley

my Prayer:
Lord, please help me to be blameless today. For even one minute of today. Please help me to represent you well. Please help me to be honorable. Help me to be a woman of my word today, Lord. Please fill me with an awareness of your Holy Spirit and remind me include you in every conversation, every action, every thought. If you are with me every minute, I stand a chance of being blameless. I want to be a credible witness for your grace and glory today. I want to be trustworthy. Please help me.

the Word:
. . . so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe
Philippians 2:15 (NIV)

This was dual published on my Pragmatic Compendium blog.

August 23, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

crazy woman singing in the van singing WHAT? “Glory to God Forever”

Loving the new praise song this week: “Glory to God, Glory to God, Glory to God Forever. Take my life and let it be all for you and for your glory. Take my life and let it be yours.”

For more Saturday music, check out Then Sings My Soul Saturday every Saturday hosted by Amy at Signs, Miracles and Wonders.

August 21, 2010 Posted by | christian living, music, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

one minute with God: 1 Peter 4:10-11

a Quote:
“Where is God leading today? What are the priorities that need to be addressed? Who needs my attention? What do I have to learn? Where might be the landmines in the day’s journey? What needs to change? In asking these questions, I hope to tune my soul to the voice of God so that I will be conscious of His guidance throughout the day. With increasing frequency this actually happens.” A Resilient Life: You Can Move Ahead No Matter What by Gordon MacDonald

my Prayer:
Lord, please bless me with discernment today. Show me what I need to see, whether I want to see it or not. Lead me where I need to go, give me the words I need to speak and, please Lord, give me an awareness not only of your faithful presence, but an awareness of the needs of others that I so often miss even when they are smack in front of me. Allow me to serve you today Lord, even if I never get to know how you do it. Please allow me to be your hands and feet and voice. Please use me right where I am. Please allow me to be a witness for your grace and glory today.

the Word:
Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.
1 Peter 4:10-11 (NIV)

This was dual published on my Pragmatic Compendium blog.

August 20, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

one minute with God: Ephesians 4:12

a Quote:
“What if power comes from empowering others rather than dominating them?” The Friends We Keep: A Woman’s Quest for the Soul of Friendship by Sarah Zacharias Davis

my Prayer:
Lord, please bless me with the motivation and wisdom to recognize opportunities to encourage those I interact with today. In those opportunities, help me to equip someone by showing me how to freely and graciously share any knowledge, skills or talents you have already blessed me with. Please don’t allow me to miss any opportunities due to my attention to self-focused goals, indifference or the sense of being needed or admired that can stem from knowing, understanding or being able to do something better than someone else.

Help me to remember how much I don’t know, don’t understand and can’t do. Help me to remember all the people who have helped me, and those who continue to help me. Thank you for those people in my life, Lord.

the Word:
. . . to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.
Colossians 3:12 (NIV)

This was dual published on my Pragmatic Compendium blog.

August 19, 2010 Posted by | books, christian living, devotions, prayer, spiritual growth | , , , , , | Leave a comment

one minute with God: Colossians 3:12

a Quote:
“Jesus understood that the deadliest sins – resentment, arrogance, judgmentalism, lovelessness – are ones we can commit without lifting a finger.” Everybody’s Normal Till You Get to Know Them by John Ortberg

my Prayer:
Lord, please bless me with patience and kindness today. Please bless me with empathy and compassion for others. Please don’t let me hurt anyone as a result of my neglect or indifference or pride.

the Word:
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
Colossians 3:12 (NIV)

This one minutes with God devotional was dual published on my Pragmatic Compendium blog.

August 18, 2010 Posted by | bible, books, christian living, devotions, prayer, two minutes with God | , , , , , , | Leave a comment