Genesis 5020

My Story for His Glory

The Essential Guide to Prayer by Dutch Sheets August 9, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 9:26 pm
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About:

Life-Changing Teaching on the Simplicity of Having a Powerful Prayer Life

A prayer life with God isn’t complex, but sometimes not knowing how to start can be enough to make a person turn away altogether. In The Essential Guide to Prayer, you’ll discover that the starting point is to find your motivation for prayer in the power of love by forming a solid relationship with God as Father and friend. As Dutch Sheets lays the foundation for your motivation to pray, he challenges you to reflect with “Did You Understand?” questions at the end of each chapter. Dig deeper into the core of your prayer life by learning to pray effectively both alone and in groups, and by persisting in prayer until you see God’s answers.

Dutch Sheets is an internationally recognized author, teacher, and speaker. Based in Colorado, he travels extensively, empowering believers for passionate prayer and societal transformation. He has pastored, taught, and served on the board of directors of numerous organizations. Learn more at http://www.dutchsheets.org.

My thoughts:

What a powerful book. This book truly stirred my heart and empowered me.

I think sometimes when it comes prayer we can become confused and not even sure what to pray about at the time, or who. At least for me that happens. This book talks about being sensitive to the promptings you might get from the Holy Spirit, even if the prompting wakes you up in the middle of the night.

Sometimes I feel bad because I am not one of those people who can go up to someone and just say, “Hey, can I pray for you?” or, “Jesus loves you.” But maybe that isn’t for everyone. Maybe instead of approaching someone in the grocery store I just pray for them. I see that mom struggling with her kids I and intercede for her right there but don’t say anything out loud. Now, there is a time and place for approaching and I think we need to be sensitive if Jesus is telling you that you need to be vocal and approach someone. But let’s not discount the power of intercession.

If someone or something keeps coming to your mind maybe you need to be interceding for them and this book will empower you to do just that.

Visit Dutch here.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher. All opinions are my own. 

 

You Might Be One Swing Away July 22, 2016

Filed under: Melissa's devotions/articles — Melissa Finnegan @ 3:40 pm
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By ANGELA BENITO

By ANGELA BENITO

This week has been a week of sensing God pressing me to pray, to not give up. I feel a desperate need to add my prayers to other believers around the world and see God rise up in power and justice.

Today as I was praying Jesus gave me a great visual of what our prayers can do. I know I often feel like I have been praying for something and nothing is changing. But the truth is you might be one prayer (or swing) away from the situation bending to God’s will. Below is what I learned today:

I asked Jesus how do our prayers make a difference. He told me every time we pray within the will of the Father our prayers go out to that situation or person.

Then I asked why don’t we always see change?

He told me that even though our prayers are within God’s will other people have free will. So even if you are praying for a marriage to be restored or someone to be healed from addictions the person we are praying for has a free will and can choose things that don’t allow us to see God answer that prayer.

However, every time we pray it’s like taking an ax to a tree, we make the tree weaker, we are chipping away at the trunk.

Jesus told me, “You’d be shocked to see how many trees are one swing away from falling and bending.”

I saw a forest of trees almost ready to fall but the people gave up and walked away. The tree only needed one more swing but the person swinging got tired but if they could have just swung the ax one more time the tree would have fallen.

The same is true with people. We pray and we pray and nothing seems to change, soon we forget about the situation or we give up and we stop. But how many times have we been one prayer away from the person being free from addiction, or that marriage being restored and we walked away. Just one more prayer could have made all the difference, but we got tired.

Just like some trees are thicker than others and will take more swings to get it to fall that same is true with people. Some people have stronger wills, or thicker heads (kidding…sort of) and will take longer to make them fall. Others are a bit thinner and will fall more easily.

I know my heart is burdened with the things the enemy is doing in this world, to families and nations. Praying for things like our country seems so big, what difference can our little prayer (ax) make. But if we all come together and take turns taking a swing soon the tree will fall and God’s power will be shown.

We can’t have the mind-set that things have to get this way before Jesus returns. I don’t think He is okay with that line of thinking. He doesn’t want to us to just watch this all happen. He wants us to show His glory to the world so more will be ready when He returns.

Will you join me in praying for our country, our world, families, children, whatever you can think of. When you get tired know someone else is picking up their ax and taking a swing.

Don’t give up. You might be one swing away from seeing your prayer answered.

 

 

Fervent by Priscilla Shirer September 10, 2015

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 12:45 pm
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Fervent

About:

You have an enemy . . . and he’s dead set on destroying all you hold dear and keeping you from experiencing abundant life in Christ. What’s more, his approach to disrupting your life and discrediting your faith isn’t general or generic, not a one-size-fits-all. It’s specific. Personalized. Targeted.

 

So this book is your chance to strike back. With prayer. With a weapon that really works. Each chapter will guide you in crafting prayer strategies that hit the enemy where it hurts, letting him know you’re on to him and that you won’t back down. Because with every new strategy you build, you’re turning the fiercest battles of life into precise strikes against him and his handiwork, each one infused with the power of God’s Spirit.

My thoughts:

Out of all the books I have read from the War Room resources this is by far my favorite.

I had done a study by Priscilla but never read anything by her. I love her tone as she writes. It’s so real you feel like you are sitting in the room with her.

Each chapter starts with why the enemy would want to steal something from you, like your passion, your purity, your focus. It makes so much sense. He knows what he is doing and knows what to target on you.

In the back of the book are cards, on them you can write a prayer from each chapter and pull it out and put it somewhere you will see it and prayer over it. I have done this and put them on my vanity so while I am getting ready in the morning I can pray over these things.

I can not recommend this book enough. If you want to get to the heart of your prayer life this is a must read. It is for women, but honestly, the principles given here can be applied to men’s lives as well.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Books-A-Million or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me in exchange for an honest review. 

 

There is Power in Prayer September 4, 2015

Filed under: Melissa's devotions/articles — Melissa Finnegan @ 12:55 pm
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Through reading all of these book on prayer recently God is really rocking my world (I have one more to review and I will get to it next week. It is my favorite by far). He is showing me this has been an area of neglect in my life and time with Him and this is the time He treasures most.

As a momma I love when my kids ask me to snuggle with them for a minute. I know all too soon they will out grow that but for now I treasure it.

The same is true with God. He loves when we take the time to come to Him and rest, speak, whisper, cry, laugh. Whatever it is we need to do.

Things change when we COMMIT to prayer. Notice the word commit. We must do it when we feel angry toward the one we need to pray for the most, when we feel hopeless for a situation we have been praying for change for years and see nothing.

I have even gotten to the point (most of the time, but not always) where I can pray in the mist of a disagreement. I can stare at the one I am angry at and not say a word but turn my mind to the One who can change the situation.

The bottom line is if you want things to be different in your life: pray. This isn’t an easy, quick-fix answer. It’s anything but easy but it’s the only thing that will work.

Nothing will change if we don’t go to the only One who can change it. Our battles are fought on our knees, not on Facebook or by gossiping about those who annoy us.

And it is a fight. We must fight for those we love, even when we don’t feel love. But we fight from victory, not for victory.

We fight for our marriages, not in our marriages.

We fight for our children not with our children.

We fight for our churches not with our churches.

The battle has been won, our enemy just wants to makes us miserable while we wait for the One who loves us. The One who calls us by name.

Waiting isn’t easy and our enemy would like nothing more than for us to give up and give in to the defeat he places in our minds. But we must persist. We must press in. We can’t give up. Our Father makes all things new. We must trust and believe with child like faith.

Speaking of waiting, here is a song we’ve been doing at church. I’m sure you’ve heard and maybe I’ve shared it already, sorry if I have but it’s a good song matter what.

Click here to listen. Have a great Labor Day weekend everyone!

 

This Means War: A Strategic Prayer Journal (For Teens) August 27, 2015

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 5:37 pm
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this means war

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You’ve got battles to fight—on your knees.

The teen years can be tough; don’t try to make it through without one of your most powerful weapons—prayer. A companion book to the movie War Room, this new kind of journal will get you ready for a new kind of prayer life, one that’s strong, growing, and reflects just how powerful prayer is. Each short chapter tackles one of the biggest questions teens have about prayer, questions such as:

Why pray, anyway?What should I pray for? Are selfish prayers okay?Who should I pray for? Am I really supposed to pray for my enemies too?Will God listen? And will He answer? Just-right journaling prompts will then get you thinking—and praying—and reinforce the real power of fighting battles on your knees.

My thoughts:

I love this book for teens. It takes a simple, straight forward approach to introducing them to prayer and asking them questions to get them thinking about why it’s hard to pray.

At one point the teen is asked to be quiet for fifteen minutes and pray and reflect on what that’s like. Not easy for a teen but I love that they are being pointed in that direction.

I can see this book having a HUGE impact on lives if the child will actually go through it slowly and take the time to write down answers to the questions in this book.

I will say I haven’t gotten my daughter to do it yet and I don’t believe forcing her is what God wants. So I’ll leave it with her and hopefully one day she will decide to pick it up. Maybe you could do the same thing for the teen in your life 🙂

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Books-A-Million or your favorite retailer. (Book releases Sept. 1st)

A copy of this book was given to me in exchange for an honest review. 

 

The Battle Plan for Prayer by Stephen and Alex Kendrick August 25, 2015

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 5:10 pm
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the battle plan

About:

Inspired by the Kendrick Brothers’ new movie, War Room, this exciting new resource from the #1 best-selling author team behind The Love Dare and The Resolution for Men is designed to help anyone learn how to become a powerful person of prayer. The Battle Plan for Prayer begins with prayer’s core purpose, its biblical design, and its impact throughout history. Readers will be guided scripturally through the fundamentals of how effective prayer works, inspired towards a closer, more intimate relationship with God, and shown how to develop specific prayer strategies for each area of life. Prayer can accomplish what a willing God can accomplish. It should be your first plan of attack in all of life’s battles, not your last resort. If you want to experience the joy of mightily answered prayer, then it’s time to engage with God at another level.

My thoughts:

This is another resource to go along with the War Room. This one is for any adult, man or woman.

The book starts out basic and gradually moves into more specific prayers.

This book should be read over a thirty-five day period, just read one short chapter a day then apply what you have learned in prayer immediately and continue building on those truths as you move throughout the book.

I would recommend this book for anyone who is new in the faith, who needs guidance because they find themselves easily distracted in prayer, or anyone who has grown lukewarm in their faith or prayer life. This is a wake-up call to the need for prayer.

God is really showing me as I read through all of the War Room books the power of prayer and that we can’t give up, even when we don’t see anything changing, we must be persistent and this book will guide you in doing that.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Books-A-Million or your favorite retailer. (This book releases Sept. 1st)

A copy of this book was given to me in exchange for an honest review. 

 

Prayer Works: Prayer Training and Strategy for Kids August 20, 2015

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 5:51 pm
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prayer works

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What’s Your Strategy?

As kids grow, their prayer life needs to grow too—but how? Stephen Kendrick and Alex Kendrick offer a strategy that kids can use to figure out how prayer works and just how powerful it is. Lots of great explanation is combined with fun activities, illustrations, and journaling prompts to get kids thinking and praying.

This companion book to the movie War Room contains 32 perforated journal pages kids can use to write specific prayers and then post them on the walls in their prayer room—just like the characters in the movie. Topics include:

What is prayer?

Why should I pray?

Where do I pray?

Is there a wrong way to pray?

What should I pray for?

Does God really hear me?

My thoughts:

This is another book brought to you by the creators of the War Room. This is for your older elementary prayer warrior.

My son and I are working our way through this book. It’s a great guide for parents who are wanting to get their kids praying but aren’t sure how to introduce it in a way that will grab their attention. My kids pray before meals and I pray with them before they go to bed but this book is really a great guide for talking about the different ways you can pray, why and when.

This book begins with a what a relationship with Jesus is and how to have that. If you child hasn’t asked Jesus into their heart now might be the time. Then the book progresses with questions kids might have, like does God really hear me? Will God answer my prayers?

Finally, in the back of the book your child can write out suggested scriptures in their own words (I love that) and then different prayer requests.

Overall, I recommend this book for 8-11 year-olds…a great resource.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Books-A-Million or your favorite retailer. (Book doesn’t release until Sept. 1st)

A copy of this book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.