Persistence in Prayer

Do you ever feel like your prayers are not being heard or you don’t think that they will be answered? I have. Don’t give up; keep praying. Be persistent. God is ok with that. Sometimes I think He wants us to show how much we want it and wants us to “pray without ceasing.” To not give up. Sometimes, we are being impatient, and God is answering in His own time. He’s ok with that too. He just wants us to pray earnestly, and pray with faith. Jesus gives us a couple parables to remind us to be persistent in our prayer and remind us that God is faithful and will give us what we need.

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What God Sows

The type of soil we use for our gardens and crops can really make a difference. The right soils can produce a beautiful garden, good crops and abundant fruit. Other soils, not so much. We used to live in Nevada. It was hard to get things to grow there (except sagebrush and tumbleweeds and nasty things called “goatheads which have spikes that will go through a bicycle tire and don’t feel good on the feet). Other places we have been have lush green plants because they have that dark organic soil full of nutrients. How we hear and understand (and accept or not) God’s word is kind of like that, as Jesus explains in this parable.

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Out with the Old, In with the New

Sometimes change is hard. Sometimes we have a hard time accepting new things. Jesus told a parable that speaks to us about the new…The New Covenant that is better than the old. Grace is more complete than the Law. We are a new creation in Christ. The old self has passed away. There will be a New Heaven and a New Earth. He will make all things new.

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Working in God’s Vineyard

Many are called to do God’s work. It might be something seemingly insignificant that may be behind the scenes or a small task or it might be something that will impact many others. Whatever work you do, do it as unto the Lord (because you are!) and do it wholeheartedly. If you are called to lead, be the shepherd God has called you to be and follow what the Holy Spirit tells you. Listen to godly advice. And leave pride out of it. And do not compare yourself to others. Again, let God be your guide. Let us remember that God is in control, not us. The leaders of Israel did not see it that way. When God sent someone to give a message, they would not listen. Pride got in their way. They wanted the power and prestige and didn’t want anyone to take that from them. Jesus told a couple parables that deals with the heart of those who are called to do God’s work.

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Vine and Branches

Many of Jesus’ parables relate to Israel’s way of life. Many people understood about sheepherding, vineyards and olive groves. That was their lifestyle. Jesus would teach with relatable stories. In this parable He teaches that our relationship with Him is much like a grape vine and its branches.

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