Theme: PRAYED UP not PREYED ON
The Joy of a Relationship with Jesus Christ
Theme Verse: Romans 15:13 - Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Thought for the three days: God desires to fill us with Joy by the power of His Holy Spirit. There is someone who wants to steal that Joy. When we don't PRAY and submit to God's desire for our lives, satan PREYS on us. The crazy thing is that we often don't take time to confront the way we are PREYED upon because we are not PRAYED UP.
PRAY for the Joy of a secure relationship with Jesus through the invitation of the power of His Holy Spirit. Confront the PREY on your insecurities.
1 And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led about by the Spirit in the wilderness 2 for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And He ate nothing during those days; and when they had ended, He became hungry. 3 And the devil said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread." 4 And Jesus answered him, "It is written, 'Man shall not live on bread alone.'"
It was 4:00 a.m. and, as a young boy, I was helping my Dad deliver milk from house to house. In one neighborhood at the end of a driveway that morning was a go-kart waiting to be picked up by the trash man. I was able to convince Dad to let me become the owner of that go-kart. You can imagine my excitement. My Grandpa gave me a small building behind his house to work on it. Mom, however, did not share the same enthusiasm as I did. One day, instead of doing my chores, she caught me working on the engine and, with a very frustrated voice, she belted out, "That thing will never run again!" While those words motivated me to finish the go-kart, they also became a stuck record in my mind. Years went by and I continued thinking that acceptance and love came through the need to prove myself by what I do, not who I am. This insecurity became the way I functioned and even began to make me think that is who I really am. The more the insecurity grew, the harder I worked to prove it true so I could meet my own expectations that I had accepted as an 11-year-old boy. After 16 years of being PREYED ON, I submitted my life to God and invited the Holy Spirit into my life. As I began to be PRAYED UP, God began to confront me with the insecurities of that stuck recording that I had gotten so used to that I did not even think about it; I would just act on it.
JESUS, TRANSFORM MY THINKING
Jesus was in the wilderness hungry and likely very weak. His physical body desired something to eat. But being PRAYED UP, Jesus heard the right words from God as a recording in His head and immediately said, Satan, you are not able to PREY ON me. I do not live or exist because of my physical body but because of my Spirit, which is connected to God by the Holy Spirit (paraphrase). Satan PREYS ON us by identifying our natural desires in the now. My insecurities have a root in the protection of myself "in the now," and so I try to protect the natural. When I let Jesus, by the power of the Holy Spirit, confront my insecurities, I am able to have Joy in the now because I have hope in the eternal, and Jesus is my security in the now.
Lord, today I give you permission to confront my insecurities and, yes, that even includes your choice to let others around me reveal them to me. I repent for those thoughts and actions that are being PREYED ON, and I choose today to repent and ask You for forgiveness. I submit to You and invite the Holy Spirit to come in my heart and mind today. I choose today and every day to change my daily status from PREYED ON to PRAYED UP. Thank you, God, for Joy today.