Counseling One Another

Helping you grow in God's all-sufficient truth and grace

Counseling One Another

November 27, 2015
by Paul Tautges

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Hey everybody, Shepherd Press has 40% OFF EVERYTHING from now through Monday, November 30th. That’s a huge savings! For example,

Not only is it a great time to buy biblically rich books as gifts, but it’s a great time for your church or ministry to stock up on resources for discipleship ministry.

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November 27, 2015
by Paul Tautges

Security from the Shepherd

Psalm 23 is comfort food for the weary soul. Read it, meditate on it, and rest in these simple truths.

  • My Shepherd adequately supplies all of my needs.
  • My Shepherd is the only sure cause of contentment.
  • My Shepherd leads me and satisfies my deepest thirst for wholeness.
  • My Shepherd is the only one who can fully restore the inner person, my soul.
  • My Shepherd desires my practical holiness and will do whatever it takes to lead me there for the sake of His Name.
  • My Shepherd never leaves my side and will never forsake me.
  • My Shepherd provides for my safety; therefore, I have no legitimate cause for fear.
  • My Shepherd’s rod of discipline and staff of protection both bring me comfort.
  • My Shepherd abundantly lavishes His grace upon me when the wolves attack.
  • My Shepherd binds up my broken bones and heals my wounds; His supply and care are abundant.
  • My Shepherd’s goodness and grace will be by my side from now, until death, and throughout eternity.

“I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep” (John 10:14-15).

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November 25, 2015
by Paul Tautges

Give Thanks in All Things

“In everything give thanks” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). We must be told this because by nature we are not thankful people. It is more natural for sinners like us to complain and to be ungrateful. Regrettably, Jerry Bridges is correct when he writes, “We are anxious to receive but too careless to give thanks. We pray for God’s intervention in our lives, then congratulate ourselves rather than God for the results.” Therefore, we must discipline ourselves to practice the discipline of thanksgiving. Maintaining an attitude of thanksgiving expressed through constant prayer provides at least six benefits.

Thankful prayer reminds us that God is our Provider (1 Tim. 4:4–5)

Scripture teaches that all food is from God and therefore should be recognized as such by offering a prayer of thanksgiving to Him: “For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with gratitude; for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer” (1 Tim. 4:4–5). Jesus even modeled this for us in the account of the miraculous feeding of 5,000 men and their families. The Gospel of John is careful to note that before Jesus distributed the loaves and fishes He had already “given thanks” (John 6:11). It is assumed that, because food is God’s provision to us, we will bless, or thank, Him for it. When traveling in the former Soviet Union I always appreciate the believers’ dedication to prayer, which is marked by the simple custom of standing to give thanks to God not only before a meal, but also afterward, prior to anyone leaving the table. This form of thankful prayer is a simple yet important reminder that God is faithful to provide for His children.

Thankful prayer brings glory to God (2 Cor. 9:12–15)

One of the reasons why Paul wrote his second letter to the Corinthian church was to challenge them to get back on track concerning their giving to the Lord’s work. False apostles, who attacked Paul’s leadership by accusing him of being in the ministry for the money, had led the believers astray. Therefore, Paul called them to follow the example of the Macedonian believers, whose sacrificial giving had become well known. He believed with all his heart that “he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully” (2 Cor. 9:6). The apostle identified one aspect of this bountiful harvest as the thankfulness that the believers’ giving produced in the hearts of the recipients and, ultimately, the glory that was received by God (2 Cor. 9:12–15).

Thankful prayer proves we are filled with the Spirit (Eph. 5:18–20)

Believers are not to be controlled by alcohol (or, by application of principle, any other foreign substance): “do not get drunk with wine,” but instead “be filled with the Spirit” (Eph 5:18). To be filled with the Holy Spirit means to be willingly controlled by Him by means of daily submission to the Word of God which He inspired. When this is true we speak “to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with [our] heart to the Lord” (v. 19), and we also give “thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father” (v. 20).

Thankful prayer combats anxiety and invites peace (Phil. 4:6–7)

Thankfulness is a mindset; it is a choice. As such, it is a remedy for worry. Philippians 4:6–7 instructs us to “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Why did Paul add the words “with thanksgiving”? It is because an anxious spirit cannot coexist with a thankful one. Thankful prayer summons the security guard called peace to stand post at the doors of our hearts, forcing out worry and forbidding its reentrance. Thankfulness is the proper attitude of prayer: “Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving” (Col. 4:2, emphasis added).

Thankful prayer reminds us that Christ alone qualifies us to be God’s children (Col. 1:12)

The Apostle Paul frequently prayed for the spiritual growth of believers under his care. At the end of his list of the spiritual qualities that he asked God to produce in the hearts of the Colossians is that they would always give “thanks to the Father, who has qualified [them] to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light” (Col. 1:12). When we pray we must never forget that the only reason why God hears us is because Jesus, our Mediator and Advocate, intercedes for us at that very moment (1 Tim. 2:5; 1 John 2:1; Heb. 7:25). Though we are sinners by nature, thought, and deed, God graciously receives us through faith in the sacrificial death and bodily resurrection of His dearly beloved Son. Thankfulness protects us from the prideful thought that we possess even an ounce of virtue in and of ourselves that obligates God to listen to us. We come to God’s throne of grace in prayer because of Christ and Christ alone (Heb. 4:15).

Thankful prayer recognizes God as the source of strength (1 Tim. 1:12)

In times of weakness we discover just how strong the strength of God is. This is a lesson God taught Paul by permitting Satan to afflict him with a “thorn in the flesh,” which the apostle repeatedly pleaded with God to remove. However, although Satan’s goal is always to kill and to destroy, God had certain plans to use that thorn to further the development of Christlike character in the apostle. God knew that Paul was susceptible to the pride of self-sufficiency and therefore he needed to learn that the strength of God was made perfect in His servant’s “weakness” (2 Cor. 12:9).

In addition to his own personal struggles, Paul faced severe treatment from others: “we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body” (2 Cor. 4:8–10). One might be tempted to think that this much suffering would result in a spirit of complaint and bitterness, but such was not the case with Paul. Instead, he wrote to Timothy, “I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service” (1 Tim. 1:12). The secret to Paul’s strength was his inner reliance on Christ, who had not only called him into the ministry, but also promised to strengthen him to persevere to the end.

[This post is adapted from Chapter 2 of Teach Them to Pray.]

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November 24, 2015
by Paul Tautges

7 Quotes from Owen’s “The Mortification of Sin”

This morning, I pulled one of my Puritan Paperbacks off the shelf, The Mortification of Sin by John Owen, and reviewed a few chapters, focusing on sentences I had previously underlined. Here are a few that the Spirit used in my heart.

Mortification Is Every Christian’s Duty

“The choicest believers, who are assuredly freed from the condemning power of sin, should also make it their business all of their days to mortify the indwelling power of sin.”

“To ‘mortify’ means to put any living thing to death. To kill a man, or any other living thing, is to take away the principle of all its strength, vigour, and power, so that it cannot act, or exert, or put forth any proper actings of its own….it is the constant duty of believers to render a death blow to the deeds of the flesh, that they may not have life and strength to bring forth their destructive influence.”

The Flesh Is Always An Enemy

“He that is appointed to kill an enemy, has only done half his work if he quits before the enemy is dead (Gal. 6:9; Heb. 12:1; 2 Cor. 7:1).”

“When sin lets us alone, we may let sin alone; but sin is always active when it seems to be the most quiet, and its waters are often deep when they are calm. We should therefore fight against it and be vigorous at all times and in all conditions, even when there is the least suspicion….Sin is always acting, always conceiving, and always seducing and tempting. Who can say that he has ever had anything to do with God or for God which indwelling sin has not tried to corrupt? This battle will last more or less all our days. If sin is always acting, we are in trouble if we are not always mortifying.”

Neglect of Mortifying the Flesh Leads to Spiritual Decay

“Those who neglect mortification allow the inner man to perish. Grace in the heart must have exercise.”

“We will not be making progress in holiness without walking over the bellies of our lusts. He who does not kill sin along the way is making no progress in his journey.”

“He who is able to swallow and digest daily sins in his life without conviction in the heart is at the very brink of turning the grace of God into lasciviousness, and being hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.”

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November 21, 2015
by Paul Tautges
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Saturday Night Prayer

Lord of the Church,

As we anticipate gathering together as Your people for the purpose of worship, tomorrow morning, we pray Your name will be glorified and Your will accomplished in our hearts and the hearts of all those who worship You through Jesus Christ.

  • Lead us to the Rock, Redeemer, and Refuge. Lift our thoughts to the Rock so that we may trust in Your strength (Psalm 19:14). Touch the affections of our hearts so that we, the household of God, will grow in our love for our Redeemer, Jesus Christ, who is the Chief Cornerstone (Ephesians 2:20). Hide us in the shelter of Your wings as we listen to Your promises (Psalm 61:1-4).
  • Make us responsive to the Holy Spirit as You seek worshipers to draw near in spirit and truth. May the Holy Spirit who indwells us stir us up in our inner person to praise You with every part of our being (Psalm 138:1). Lord, reveal our hidden sins or hypocrisy so that we may repent and worship in truth, purity, and faith (Psalm 24:3-6).
  • Fill the pastor-preacher with the Holy Spirit’s power. Lord, it is You who enables a mere man to preach with clarity, conviction, and boldness as the forces of Hell wage war against him (Ephesians 6:10-20). Fill his heart with love and compassion for those to whom he preaches so that his preaching will edify and equip believers with grace and truth, and plead with unbelievers to embrace Christ (Ephesians 4:12; 2 Corinthians 5:20).
  • Open the hearts of the unconverted, make the gospel’s power to save real in our public worship experience. As You did for Lydia, when the apostle preached, open hearts to respond to the Word that is spoken (Acts 16:14). May the Spirit prick their consciences over sin, pierce their hearts with conviction, and grant them the gifts of repentance and faith so that they may turn from unbelief to faith in Jesus Christ (John 16:8; Acts 2:37-38; Ephesians 2:8-10; Acts 11:18; 1 Thessalonians 1:9).

Glorify Your name, we pray, in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.

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November 20, 2015
by Paul Tautges
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Nuggets of Wisdom [11/20/15]

Here are 5 resources that I found profitable this week:

Grieving Pastor Speaks Out about Wife’s Murder Investigation (Fox News) – Beautiful! Let’s continue to pray for Davey Blackburn.

When You Indulge in Pornography, You Participate in Sex Slavery (Andy Naselli) – The only thing I would add to this excellent article from the CBMW Journal is the reminder that women and girls, though primary, are not the only victims of pornography and sex slavery. Men and boys are also deeply sinned against by homosexual pornography and sex trafficking. Too many biblical resources are silent on this very real problem.

Gone Fishin’: A Forgotten Model of Pastoral Ministry (David Murray) – “I believe fishing for souls is one of the most powerful models of Christian ministry and must be re-prioritized.”

Satan’s Great Trick (Tim Challies) – “Satan’s great joy is to convince you that the sin you are about to commit is very small and the sin you have just committed is very large.”

Come to the Man Rejected by Men (Desiring God) – “Christ’s rejection on our behalf covers all the inadequacies of our acts of obedience.”

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November 17, 2015
by Paul Tautges
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Jesus Knows Our Every Weakness

The old hymn affirms, “Jesus knows our every weakness, take it to the Lord in prayer.” How true this is! Therefore, reminding ourselves of the depth of the Savior’s understanding of our humanity compels us to become people of prayer. That’s the basic point of Part 2 in a 3-part blog series from Cruciform Press, featuring excerpts from Brass Heavens: Reasons for Unanswered Prayer.

Jesus Christ, fully God and fully man, is the one whose perfect life and sin-atoning death serves as the only possible bridge between sinful man and a holy God. Accordingly, all our prayers must go “through” him, the believer’s High Priest. Now that Jesus has ascended back to the Father, his ministry to us continues. The door to God that the Son opened for us through his death, he now keeps open in his role as our High Priest. Read the rest here.

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November 16, 2015
by Paul Tautges
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The Most Encouraging and Comforting Promise in the Bible

[Today’s post is written by Armand Tiffe and is a devotional message he gave at a pastor’s breakfast at Cornerstone Christian Academy in Willoughby, Ohio. Armand preceded me as the founding pastor of Cornerstone Community Church in Mayfield Heights, Ohio, and remains on staff as Pastor Emeritus, overseeing our counseling ministry and training center.]

Since I was asked to share a devotional to pastors, I cannot think of anything that would be more encouraging than what I consider to be the most encouraging and comforting promise in the Bible. It’s a promise made by God which has sustained me for 33 years of pastoral ministry. Life and ministry are hard and overwhelming at times; there are times we feel a sense of inadequacy in dealing with the pressures and problems. I have found this promise from God to be encouraging, comforting, and true; and hope you will too.

The promise I have in mind is found in Hebrews 13:5, For He has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” It’s actually an Old Testament quote, a promise that God has made at various times. For example, God made this promise to Jacob when he was at a low point in his life due to adverse family circumstances. His heart was filled with regret over the past; he was facing loneliness in the present, and anxiety about his future (Genesis 28:15). God made the same promise to Joshua after Moses died and Joshua would be Israel’s new leader. He needed encouragement to lead the people, and God gave him the encouragement he needed with this great promise (Joshua 1:5). Now, in Hebrews, we see this same promise made to Christians. Some of them were under intense persecution and facing the stresses and afflictions that accompany it — being disowned by family and friends; loss of employment; loss of property; public mockery; imprisonment, and even martyrdom. As a result, many of them were very discouraged and; therefore we find sprinkled in the letter to the Hebrews strong words of encouragement to energize their faith.

It’s intended to energize our faith as well. This promise is meant to be an encouragement, especially during difficult times. Even though most of us in the U.S. may not have to face imprisonment for our faith, or martyrdom (not yet, anyway); we do face some persecution and some unique stresses that come with being a church leader. It’s in the midst of these times that God calls us to be faithful to Him, but He also wants us to know that He is faithful to us.

So, let’s reflect upon this remarkable promise by making an amplified version of a key verse. It’s a relatively easy thing to do. As you know, the New Testament was originally written in Greek — a technical language but also a very rich language. Many English words in the New Testament, when researched in a Greek dictionary, yield nuggets of truth; i.e., they amplify precious truths. You look up the word in a Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, it gives you a richer understanding and you can make your own amplified version. Word studies are like windows in a house; they let in some light.

This promise in Hebrews 13:5 is like a gold mine and there are three nuggets I want to draw out of it for you. They are found in three key words: never, leave, and forsake. As we consider each of them, we’ll see how richly they amplify this precious promise from God.

The first nugget is found in the word “Never.

Greek scholars tell us that never is not a bland word. It’s a compound of five negatives heaped together to confirm the promise. In other words, it’s like saying, “No, not, and never” five times. So, an amplified version could read something like this: I will never, no not ever, no never leave you, nor forsake you. It’s a gold nugget that reinforces and intensifies this great promise.

Furthermore, the force of this statement is even greater when we keep in mind that this is an actual quotation from God Himself. God wants us to have strong assurance of hope to the end (cf. Hebrews 6:11). It’s as if God is saying: “Declare the thought of My leaving or forsaking you null and void; abolish it from your mind; eliminate it from your thoughts.”

Let this great never burn into your mind like a branding iron so that you will never, no not ever, no never forget it. If you yield your heart to its truth, it will calm your fears and strengthen you to go on no matter what you are up against.

The second nugget is found in the word “Leave.”

The Greek lexicon tells us this word means “to leave behind; to let go; to abandon; to give up on.” When added to our amplified version it could read something like this: I will never, no not ever, no never leave you behind, abandon you, give up on you, or let go of you. It’s a tremendous promise, isn’t it? Let it burn into your soul and speak to your emotions. Its truth will steady you during the dark moments of life and ministry.

Perhaps you are thinking, “Then why do I feel abandoned by God at times?” It’s not uncommon to feel abandoned by God. It can happen while you’re in the midst of a trial or when something horrific happens to you. It can happen when you don’t seem to get the desired results for your labor in ministry or when some people are causing strife within the church. At such times your emotions may whisper “God has forsaken me.” However God clearly says in His Word, “I will never leave you, nor forsake you.”

So the question is, what’s happening at these times? Your emotions are lying to you. It’s at these times we need to call our emotions a liar and believe the truth of God’s Word. The Bible is filled with examples of leaders who have gone through great trials, adverse circumstances, and evil people plotting against them — Abraham, Joseph, Moses, David, Job, the Apostles, and even Jesus. Even though on the surface it appeared for a time that God had abandoned them, He did not. He was at work behind the scene bringing about His desired purpose.           

For example, Jacob, whom I mentioned earlier, was at a low point in his life due to adverse family circumstances, and God assured him of this promise but did not immediately relieve him of the problem. Instead, God was working behind the scene, accomplishing through the trial His desired result for Jacob. Jacob emerged more humble, more refined in character, and with a greater faith in God. We need to get our thoughts in-tune with God’s Word, and it will stabilize us and give us hope.

The third nugget is found in the word “Forsake.”

Forsake means “to leave helpless; to let down; to relax the grip.” The idea is that of forsaking someone while they are in a state of defeat, a state of helplessness, or while they are in the midst of a hostile circumstance.

I’m sure some of you have experienced the pain of being forsaken by others. People may treat us this way, but God will never treat us this way. Think about it, why would God forsake those who have cost Him so much already? Romans 8:32 assures us, “He who did not spare His own Son but gave Him up for us all, how will He not also with Him graciously give us all things?” He has given His Son as the atoning sacrifice for our redemption. He has given us His Spirit to renew us. Therefore, He will not abandon us nor leave undone the work He has begun in us. We are assured in Philippians 1:6, “He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”

Now, let me give you a full-amplified rendering of the promise: I will never, no not ever, no never leave you behind, abandon you, give up on you, let go of you, leave you helpless, let you down, nor shall I ever relax My hold on you. This is a promissory note you can cash a thousand times. Remember this great promise, especially during the dark days of life. It may be during a financial setback, when anxiety over tomorrow wants to hold you captive. It’s a great promise to remember when you have to make a hard, yet right decision, when you have to go against the carnal thinking of church members or fellow leaders, when you are being unjustly criticized or misrepresented, and when your future is unknown.

“I will never leave you nor forsake you.” It’s a truth that will stabilize your thoughts and emotions. And once again, remember who backs up this great promise: For He has said… Behind this great promise is the all-powerful, all-knowing, everywhere-present God.

May this great truth give you hope, encouragement, and comfort!

I will never, no not ever,
No never leave you behind, abandon you,     
Give up on you, let go of you,
Leave you helpless, let you down,
Nor shall I ever relax My hold on you.

An appropriate way to respond to this is to take a moment to bow in private prayer and thank God for this comforting and encouraging promise.

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November 14, 2015
by Paul Tautges
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Avoid Taking Communion in an “Unworthy Manner”

One of the soberest warnings in the New Testament concerns the manner in which we approach and participate in the Lord’s Supper. Following the apostle’s repetition of Jesus’ command to regularly “do this in remembrance of Me” (1 Corinthians 11:23-26), he exhorts:

27 Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord. 28 But a man must examine himself, and in so doing he is to eat of the bread and drink of the cup. 29 For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly. 30 For this reason many among you are weak and sick, and a number sleep. 31 But if we judged ourselves rightly, we would not be judged. 32 But when we are judged, we are disciplined by the Lord so that we will not be condemned along with the world.

This warning to take God’s judgment seriously was prompted by the reality of the Corinthian’s self-exaltation, which was manifested by sinful living, pride, divisions, self-satisfaction, and contempt for others (read 11:17-22). In fact, things were so bad that God’s judgment had already begun, and some were experiencing illness and even death. Therefore, in response to the warning of God’s judgment upon those who eat of the bread and drink the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, what should we do? How should we prepare for a Communion service?


Communion is a time to examine your own heart, not primarily the hearts of others. I say primarily since the leaders of a local church and its members do have the biblical responsibility to discipline its members who are living in unrepentant sin. This discipline includes–when necessary–exclusion from participation at the Lord’s Table. So, there is a time to examine others, in a proper, biblical manner. When this is the case, the public discipline of a member is a firm reminder to all of us to practice repentance as a lifestyle.

Foremost in our minds, however, when preparing for the Lord’s Supper, should always be the state of our own relationship with God. Is there personal sin that you are cherishing in your heart (Psalm 66:18), of which you must repent? Spend time in personal confession of sins to the Lord and then rest in the promise of His forgiveness (1 John 1:8-9).


Scripture places the irrevocable duty upon believers to make every human effort to resolve the conflicts they have with others, primarily with other professing believers, and before attending public worship (Matthew 5:24). Conflict was certainly one of the issues the apostle confronted in his letter to the Corinthians, some of whom were even going as far as suing each other in the secular court (1 Corinthians 6:1-8). When anger is left to turn into resentment then ground is given to the devil for his destructive work, and bitterness defiles many people (Ephesians 4:26; Hebrews 12:15). Biblically speaking, there simply is no acceptable, justifiable “out” for the person who claims to know Christ but also refuses to be reconciled.

But what do you do if a person who professes to know Christ refuses to be reconciled to you? What then? What do you do? Must you abstain from taking communion until that person is willing to resolve the conflict biblically? Must you put your own Christian life “on hold” while they remain unwilling to heed God’s command? Scripture answers, No. If you have made multiple attempts to resolve a conflict, but the other person refuses, you must pray for your enemy (Matthew 5:44) and rest in the truth of Romans 12:18-19,

If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men. Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.

If you have tried everything to be at peace with that person, as far as it depends upon you, then you need to rest in the fact that God knows the steps you have taken, He knows your heart’s desire to be reconciled, and you must let God be God by leaving room for Him to carry out His work.


Here are a few practical suggestions:

  • Read one or more Gospel accounts of the crucifixion in Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John.
  • Read Psalm 22 or Isaiah 53, meditating on the prophecies concerning the Messiah’s suffering.
  • Sing a cross-centered hymn or worship song, thinking deeply about the truths conveyed in the lyrics. Here are few suggestions: And Can It Be?, Hallelujah! What a Savior, In Christ Alone, I Will Glory in My Redeemer, The Power of the Cross, When I Survey the Wondrous Cross, and many more.
  • Spend time in prayer, asking the Holy Spirit to prepare your heart to worship the Lord in a worthy manner.
  • Spend time in prayer for tomorrow’s Communion service. Pray for all who come to partake, the musicians, choir, Scripture readers, and preacher. Pray the Spirit leads all to exalt Christ.

Tomorrow, as you join with other believers who love the Lord Jesus Christ, make the necessary preparations.

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November 12, 2015
by Paul Tautges
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A.C.T.S. Prayer App

After reading yesterday’s post about the ACTS of Prayer, one of my readers informed me that he has created a free app based on this prayer strategy, called Prayer Prompter. Currently, the app is suited for iPhone and iPad only (not Android).

2-Drawer File Cabinet

Prayer Prompter is like a two drawer file cabinet. The top drawer stores and organizes Scripture passages in folders by topic. It comes with 600+ passages from the New American Standard Bible already installed and more can be added. You can change the passages to another version if you want and even delete the passages you don’t like. The bottom drawer stores and organizes prayer requests and answers to prayer in folders.

Prayer Prompter has been designed to enrich your prayer time by providing an easy way to read and reflect on key passages of Scripture and return to them on a regular basis. The first few folders in the top drawer are organized according to the popular ACTS method of prayer. The letters, A-C-T-S, stand for Adoration or Worship and Praise, Confession which includes Repentance and Forgiveness, Thanksgiving or the expression of Gratitude to God, and Supplication which means Petition, Intercession or Requests.

These four things are important elements of a balanced prayer life and the order of the letters is intentional. We ought to begin prayer with worship of God just as Jesus did when He taught the disciples how to pray and, even though God encourages us to bring our needs and wants to Him, we should first acknowledge Him for who He is (Adoration) and what He has done (Thanksgiving) and who we are and what we have done (Confession) before we get to our “needs and wants.” It is worth noting that those things are reserved for the second half of the Lord’s Prayer.

I don’t know about you but, when I go to God in prayer, my mind is “prone to wander.” Prayer Prompter helps me to be faithful in prayer while keeping my attention focused on God and His Word rather than myself.

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