Prayer of Encouragement, Voices of Youths, 2022

Weekly Prayer of Encouragement 17 July

Youth Brother Jonathan Baldie offers the Weekly Prayer of Encouragement 17 July 2020.

My Brothers, Sisters and Friends,

We are hope that you are well. My thoughts have been bombarded with issues concerning our relationship with God, the practices that we obtained among ourselves; and, most importantly, those things that we are passing on to the next generation. When narrowed down, the specific issue is whether or not we are more enthused about speaking among ourselves rather than speaking to God and connecting with Him on an individual and corporate level.

Recently, I was praying concerning an issue that was presented to me. During the prayer, the Holy Spirit showed me a view of God inside somewhere. It was not a fully closed place but there was a door and the sides had something around them that looked like a picture of sorts.

The Lord was saying that many persons are working around Me but are not entering into intimacy with Me. They are talking about Me, and doing things for Me, even learning about Me but not entering into My presence. They are at the door and do not want to take steps towards Me, to sit with Me. Taking the steps require focus and time. This takes us through different phases of life and levels of intimacy with Him. When we get into His presence we learn, think and do of Him, according to His will, at work in us.

This scenario kept rolling over in my mind. At some point, I started thinking about the Scripture that is written to the church in Laodicea:

15 I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! 16 So, because you are lukewarm — neither hot nor cold — I am about to spit you out of my mouth. 17 You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. 18 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see. 19 Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent. 20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”

Revelation 3:15-21 (NIV)

Man, sometimes the word of God seems so harsh. When we are attuned and open to His word, it can stick like a rusty nail in the bottom of our foot. I am reminded of the Scripture that drives God’s discipline even harder. It says:

Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? If you are not disciplined — and everyone undergoes discipline — then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all.”

Hebrews 12:7-8 (NIV)

You know, my mind went to Martha’s encounter with Jesus, which can be found in Luke 10:38-42. This tells of one person choosing intimacy with Jesus over labour. At that event, Jesus said that Mary had chosen to do the right thing over Martha by sitting at His feet listening to Him. Yet, the more forceful passage of Scripture in my mind was Revelation 3. In this passage, God expressed His disappointment at the distance that existed between Him and that type of church (thinking, attitude and behaviour) mentioned. We say the people are the church, it tells that. What the church thought of as accomplished and satisfying was the opposite of what God thought. The church was self-empowered with what was needed so they worked around God. The harsh reality is that they were blind to their own behaviour.

The church’s attitudes and behaviour had become religious. They did what was culturally expected but the doors of the hearts of the people were not opened to the level of intimacy that God required. Wow…this is tough. This kind of insight and revelation could bring on a struggle, a wrestle to the one whose heart is opening… man, Jesus.

The passage is a strong and direct one but let us never miss this great thing. God expressed His love for the church. He affirmed His role as Father, and the people, His children. He wanted a certain level of intimacy with His people. This involved a relationship wherein His people kept opening their hearts to Him. I recalled being on my knees one night in prayer and I heard the Holy Spirit saying that I needed to open my heart more and more to Him. He enters in when we open the door of our hearts, and very importantly, He wants us to daily enter into His presence, not stand at a distance. He wants our intimacy with Him to be a lifestyle, He is waiting for us His children to take the time, come in and be with Him, not just stand at the door.

Many persons may have studied the passage in Revelation 3 and have notes on it. However, can we have a fresh view of that passage by using it to reflect on our intimacy with God? Do we need to open our hearts to Him in a way that satisfies Him? Do we need to open it more to Him? Or do we connect by spending good quality time with Him, allowing Him to show us our ways, and His ways? Do we make a purposeful effort to change where there are discrepancies? Do we keep trying to make those changes?

These are some of the things we may need to think about, and do what God requires. Yet, it is going to be up to us to decide. As we contemplate, let us never forget that regardless of what has happened He loves us. Just think about it. He is willing to forgive. He loves us, and He is waiting…

As we continue in reflection, Jonathan Baldie will lead in today’s prayer. Jonathan is a member of our youth group, Teens in Praise.  His twin sister is Kaylee Baldie.

Let us pray:

As we battle through this COVID-19 pandemic, we seek blessings for our leaders, workforce and families. Lord, we ask that You give us the will, wisdom, courage, boldness and determination to overcome the Monster, crime, that is affecting our Nation.

Dear heavenly Father, you are our refuge and our strength, and we magnify Your name. We lift up Your name in praise. Lord, You are the Most High God, and we exalt You. We realize that it is through You that we live, move and have our being. Lord, without You we would fail to exist.

Lord, we come in the name of Jesus Christ thanking You for all that You have done in our lives. We ask dear Father, that You forgive all of our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Lord, we pray for the leadership of our church and business owners at this time. Lord, we ask that You be with them every step of the way and lead them into the right path. We also pray for families who lost jobs. Lord, we ask that businesses will open doors of opportunity for them so that their needs can be met, Oh great Jehovah Jireh.

Lord, we also present to You the business leaders in our congregation:

Ewan and Maxine Oliver; Lanna and Desmond Bennett; Warrick Bogle, Carol and Leroy Blake, Marcia Leair, Robert and Bevelin Smith, Paulette Dixon, Kemorine and Karl Henry, Ava Comrie, Catherine Barkley and husband, Cornel Richards and family, Everton Lewis, Pauline and Mark Garvey, Brother Astley Hall, Maxine and Benedict Ranger, Melva Knight, Nicole Fender, Sharon Baldie, Karl Jones and others.

Lord, we pray for the leaders of this country that You will guide them into the right path.  Lord, we call by name, The Honourable Prime Minister of Jamaica Andrew Holness, Minister of Health Christopher Tufton, Minister of Finance Nigel Clarke, health workers and support staff, Minister of National Security Horace Chang, Minister of Education, Karl Samuda, Leader of the Opposition Peter Philips, and their families; Jamaica Defence Force and Jamaica Constabulary Force personnel and Security Guards, all other leaders of government and their support staff; Minister of Justice, Delroy Chuck. We also remember the judges in our congregation: Paula Blake Powell and Grace Henry McKenzie.

Lord, we pray for frontline doctors, nurses and pharmacists that You will protect them from the Covid-19 virus, as well as the general workforce, and those who have to go to work or work from home. We pray that you will be with them at this time.

We pray for those frontline workers connected with our church: Medical Doctors: Asana Anderson Wilks and Rohan Wilks, Kahlete Falloon, Tina Kong, Vernon Jones, Leighton Logan; Dentists: doing emergency cases; Jhenell Black, Kimora Garvey, Dania Jones, Eleanor Reynolds; Pharmacists: Sandra Bucknor-Jones, Viveen Watson; other doctors and nurses from GMC or in connection with members and adherents of GMC who are working on the frontline (for example Dr. Richard Reynolds) and their families.

Father, we stand against what is happening in the world now as it relates to racism, diverse diseases, crimes and natural disasters in our country and different parts of the world. So Lord, we ask for your divine intervention.

Lord, we thank you for your continued protection of us.
In Jesus’ name we pray with thanksgiving.


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