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Posts Tagged ‘Prayer’

How do you pray?

I found this funny clip on GodTube and I thought I’d share it with you.  I must confess my prayers were also like that for many years – basically just a list of requests and I never thought of giving God a chance to respond…

I’m having trouble inserting it into this post so here is the link:  http://www.godtube.com/featured/video/coffee-jesus/comedy

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I had some bleeding yesterday, so we had a trip to the emergency room.  What a nightmare! All the dr on duty could tell me was that my cervix is still closed.  Luckily I got an appointment with my FS this morning – he is not worried about the bleeding, he says he can see it on the scan and its probably from the empty sac, and it should just get out.   But our baby’s heartbeat is too slow, and it measuring at about 8 weeks although I’m 9 weeks already.  There is not much the doctor can do for us, as I’m already on all medication that he can give me.  We’ll try another intralipid drip tomorrow if I can get hold of any!  All that we can hope for is another miracle! Both DH and I are so upset!

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Today I want to refer back to one of my favourite books:  “God’s po.wer to cha.nge your li.fe” from Ri.ck War.ren.  He says something so profound in that book that I just need to share it with you.  He says we must focus on the presence of God.  We must realise that God is always with us and we must learn to be aware of His presence.

Isaiah 26:3 (NIV):  3 You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in You.

We have a choice:  Focus on your problems or focus on God, who can give us the solution to our problems.  If we look at the world we will get discouraged or dejected, if you look inside you will get depressed, but when you look to Jesus Christ you will have peace.  Focus on the presence of God, He is with you and has promised to never leave you.  When you are stressed, it means you are not focusing on God, but on your circumstances.  You are focusing on the problem and not on God.  Stress is God’s way of saying:  “get your priorities straight, focus on Me!”

Psalm 46:1-2 (NIV):  1 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,

Psalm 46:11 (NIV):  11The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.

Philippians 4:6-7 (NIV):  6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

How do we get this peace?  Ask God to give it to you.  First you must pray and the result will be peace.  When you get dejected don’t get anxious – pray!

1 Peter 5:7 (NIV):  7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

John 14:1 (NIV):  Jesus Comforts His Disciples:  1 Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.

You will never experience lasting peace if Jesus Christ is not in control of your life.  Remember:  Peace does not mean you will have a life without problems; peace is the feeling of calm in the middle of the storm…

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A prayer request please!

I have mentioned before that my mom was diagnosed with uterine cancer last December.  She had to have an emergency hysterectomy and she received 5 weeks radiation treatment afterwards.  My mom had some abdominal pain recently and her GP referred her for another CT scan.  There was a difference between last week’s scan and the first one she had in January and yesterday she heard that she now has cancer in her para aortic lymph nodes.  So she has to do another round of radiation for 5 weeks with chemotherapy once a week during that same time.

Fortunately she had the abdominal pain – her next appointment was only 9 July and we are very thankful that it was picked up at least 7 weeks earlier.  She has a very positive attitude and she is convinced that she will beat this cancer too!  Unfortunately I goog.led  para aortic lymph node cancer and I scared me a lot.  What I did see before I stopped was that it seems a common problem that emerges after ovarian or uterine cancer.  I just pray to God that they were able to catch it in time, and that they will be able to treat it…

I also want to ask you to pray for a very dear friend of mine whose dad was diagnosed with a very aggressive prostate cancer last Friday.  They did a biopsy last week and now he has to wait 6 weeks before they can operate on him.  It does not make sense to me, but that is apparently how it works.  She is very close to her parents and the thought of losing her dad is absolutely terrifying.

Please keep these two people in your prayers; please ask for complete healing from the cancer.  Jesus promises us in Matthew 18:19 (NIV): 19 Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven.”

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I have had a few comments recently about how “strong” I am and how “strong” my faith is.  That is certainly not the case – I need to put the record straight here.    The posts that you are reading are mostly about things that I’m experiencing and therefore messages that I need.   I guess you can say I’m preaching to myself here.  And being “strong in faith” is another message that I really need.

I have been trying my best to be positive, and to believe that I’m going to get a positive pregnancy test next week, but every now and then, especially when my guard is down, then a sneaky thought or two come into my mind.  Things like:  “Maybe I should test a day earlier, so that I don’t have to go through the agony of spotting again, before I need to test, like so many times in the past.  Or:  “what will I do if it’s negative again? What will I tell people? “Or even “Why do I even put myself through another IVF when it will probably be negative again?”

If I analyze it, I realize that deep down inside me there is a part of me that cannot believe that I will ever get pregnant.  There I said it.  It’s really difficult for me to admit it.  Believe me, I feel so guilty and bad that my faith is not strong enough.  I have been praying a lot about it recently because I know it’s wrong.  I need to change.  Yesterday morning I begged God to help me and not to punish me for my doubts.  I went back to God’s word to help me.  I read out loud the confessions and prayers of “Dealing with fear and thoughts” from the book “Supernatural Childbirth” from Jackie Mize.  Then I did the same with “Before pregnancy: Desire to conceive, fulfilment over barrenness” from the same book, and I must say I felt a lot better and had a lot less of those nagging fears.

This morning in my prayer time, I confessed my doubt again and I asked God to please help me with a message that I need regarding this problem.  When I opened my Bible I read John 20.  It’s about the resurrection of Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene who was the first to see Jesus and then the chapter ends with Thomas, who did not want to believe that Jesus was resurrected until he saw it for himself.

John 20: 26-31 (NIV): 26 A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, Peace be with you!    27 Then he said to Thomas, Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.    28 Thomas said to him, My Lord and my God!     29 Then Jesus told him: because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.

30 Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book.    31 But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”

I got some comfort from my reference Bible’s explanation:  “Jesus did not reject Thomas because he was unsure and doubted whether Jesus was indeed resurrected.  Thomas was still loyal to Jesus and the other disciples even though he needed to see with his own eyes and feel with his own hands.  It is unfortunately so that some people need to doubt first before they can believe.  If our doubts lead to questions and our questions lead to answers then our doubts had good results.  When doubts lead to obstinate stubbornness and that stubbornness leads to a lifestyle, then those doubts are a stumbling block for your faith.”

“Thomas is the one who will always be remembered for his doubts, but he must be respected for his faith.  He did doubt, but his doubts had a purpose, because he wanted to get to the truth because of it.   He didn’t treasure his doubts, but acted in faith when he found answers to his doubts.   He voiced his doubts and Jesus gave him acceptable answers to his doubts.  We get the impression that this was just a reaction and not a lifestyle for him.”

“Thomas really tried hard, in spite of his doubts, to stay true to what he believed.  When Jesus life was in danger, Thomas said:   16 Then Thomas (called Didymus) said to the rest of the disciples: Let us also go that we may die with him.” (John 11:16 (NIV)) He did not hesitate to follow Jesus.”

Praise the Lord!  Thank you God, that you have given me an immediate answer and some comfort! Time and again I learn that I just need to turn to God immediately, when I have some kind of problem, or doubt in my life, and He comes through for me!  Hallelujah!  Why do I even doubt Him? Why do I even question whether He will or won’t make me pregnant?

PS:  Please forgive me if I haven’t come round to your comment yet.  We have had a lot of problems with our internet connection for the last week or so.  I will attend to it all as soon as we are on for longer than a few minutes at a time!

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Keep on praying:

I heard this message about a month ago from Angus Buchan – a well know South African preacher.   A week later I read the passage in my reference Bible during my Bible study time.  I’m currently praying so much that God will give us our long awaited and much anticipated BFP, so I thought I need to revisit it.

Luke 18: 1-8 (NIV):   “The Parable of the Persistent Widow:  1 Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.    2 He said: In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared about men.    3 And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’    4 For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care about men,    5 yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually wear me out with her coming!’   

6 And the Lord said, Listen to what the unjust judge says.    7 And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?    8 I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”

If an unfair, worldly judge will give in to the persistent pleas of the widow, how much more won’t our loving, almighty God respond to our pleas.  If we have a loving relationship with Him, we know with certainty that He will respond to our cries for help.  Some people pray a bit, decide that God doesn’t exist or that He doesn’t listen to them or hear them and they give up.  To really know God takes a lot of study and Jesus promises us that He will reward our persistence.

Jeremiah 33:3 (NIV):  “3 Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”  Angus Buchan says this verse is God’s phone number; we must use it when we need Him. 

I found some other scriptures that are in keeping with the message today:  Matthew 7: 7-11 (NIV):   7 Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.    8 For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.    9 Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone?    10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?    11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him!”

In these verses the child asks his dad for two essential items: bread and a fish.  Would the father have given the son a poisonous snake if the child asked for it?  God knows when the things we ask for in prayer are poisonous snakes, and no matter how many times we ask for it, He will not give us something that is not good for us.  But the closer we get to Him, the better our relationship becomes, we will know what to ask for.   

Mark 11: 23-24 (NIV):  23 I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.    24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”

Matthew 18:19 (NIV):  19 Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven.”

John 15:7 (NIV):  7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.”

Psalm 37:4 (KJV):  4 Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.”

John 16:23 (NIV):  23 In that day you will no longer ask me anything. I tell you the truth, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.”

Ephesians 3: 16-21 (NIV):  16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being,    17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love,    18 may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,    19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge— that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.    20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,    21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen.”

So can you see how many times God promises us that He will help us?  He cannot lie, He cannot make promises that He cannot keep.  Believe it for yourself and be persistent in your pleas, and He will give you what you need!

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Trust in God:

Yesterday I told you about how utterly devastated I was after my first IVF failed.  Today I want to talk about the second IVF and the difference between them.

I have a bookmark with the following verse on it:  Proverbs 3: 5 (NIV):    5Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;”  In the beginning of the cycle this bookmark fell out of my Bible and I read what was on it.  I decided then and there that I would meditate on this verse during the coming weeks.  I needed to trust God that He would help me.

A few weeks later I found out that our second IVF had also failed.   My initial reaction was negative.  I had a lot of negative thoughts run through my mind, but after seconds I realized I needed God’s help.  I prayed to God to help me, to comfort me and carry me through this difficult time.  I asked Him to help me act the way He wanted me to act, e.g. by not being bitter, angry, jealous, depressed etc.  The first few days were actually fine, except for a numb feeling.  I was worried that I could not cry this time.  The realization of the failed cycle only hit me days later.  That was the first time I cried.  It really helped to cry, to get it all out, but this time I didn’t cry all day, like the previous time.  I knew I was healing, slowly but surely.  I also had hope, because I read on the internet that 90% of all women who go for IVF treatment are pregnant after 4 IVF cycles (FET’s included).  I still had my frozen embryos so I was hoping that a future FET would be successful.

About three weeks after the news of my failed IVF, I got the news that my mom had endometrial cancer.  She had to go for a hysterectomy immediately, and that was done 2 days before Christmas.  Thank God that the cancer had not spread outside her uterus.  It was quite a stressful time, but my mom recovered well from the hysterectomy.  She had to endure radiation as well (as a precaution), and her last radiation treatment was yesterday.  It seems that she is free from cancer.  Praise the Lord!

It was a stressful time for me, but I came upon the above verse a few other times over the next few weeks.  Sometimes it was not just verse 5, but Proverbs 3: 5-8 (NIV):  “5Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;   6 in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.  7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil.    8 This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.” 

When I come upon the same message again and again I write it down in my notebook.  On 15 January I wrote the following:  “These verses sum up exactly what I have been thinking and what I’ve heard time and again when I came upon this message.  This is what I hear from the message:

  1. Trust in God.
  2. Do not try to do things on your own.
  3. Pray about everything and consult with the Lord first.
  4. Don’t think you know everything.
  5. Serve the Lord.
  6. Avoid everything that’s bad – stop sinning.
  7. When you do all of the above, then you will have health and nourishment.”

There was such a huge difference in my reaction from both failed treatments.  I was almost suicidal after the first failed IVF, but after the second I was sad, but I was also hopeful.  The difference was the help I got from the Lord.  Every time I felt that I was getting despondent or depressed I prayed to the Lord to help me and He did, almost immediately.  I did not get the result I wanted (a pregnancy) but the Lord helped me through the difficult times, and the second time was definitely supposed to be worse if you take the stress of my mom’s cancer into account, yet it did not feel worse to me… Praise the Lord!

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