Workplace Prayer

[‘was digging through some old papers & found this prayer written awhile back … seems rather applicable to most workplace settings]praying

Thank You, Papa God, that You are at work in the lives of EACH person who works where I work and who directs the affairs of where I work.
You will perfect and carry to completion Your work in them.
You will use each person to bring Your will to fruition.
May YOU be magnified in all things—You are Lord of all.
I can trust YOU.
You are so much bigger than everything.
You will show Yourself strong.
Help me to pray for each one, serve them, love them as You love me, expect and trust in Your work in them to continue, just as You work on me.

For those I work with who follow You, their identity is in YOU!
You live in us. We’re to be love wherever we go.

I am crucified with Christ; I live through You, dying to self.
I am free of myself and others can’t control me or make/break my days.
It’s all about You; it’s not about me.
People are not my barometer.
“Forgive them, Father , for they know not what they do”
Help me to manifest Your kind of love throughout today.
Help me to bless and not curse those who irritate or distract.
Love thinks the best of every person.

Guide me in taking every thought captive with the Word.
You love me AND those around me.
You’re perfecting each of us.
You want us to submit to one another.
Today, I acknowledge: I am a daughter of God—not merely a Christian.
Cause Your Word to become flesh in me this day.
Restore my nature back to that of love as You desire and intend.

Jesus, You were beaten, so I could be unbeatable.
Help me to wear Your presence as I go.
Make me righteousness conscious–You’ve made me righteous through Jesus’ death.
Guilt, shame, nor condemnation can’t touch me!
You, God, who are Love, live in each of us. Love never fails.
Those who trust in You will never be disappointed and never be put to shame.
I choose to submit to You and to resist the enemy.
Lord, be magnified!

Bring forth a spirit of unity among us today as we serve You by loving and serving others.
Help me to not be anxious about anything, but to give each thing to You.
I can rest in the finished work of Christ… letting patience have its perfect work, so I’ll not be lacking anything.
I rest with my Shepherd … my Caretaker.
You will do above and beyond whatever I could ask or think.

I am IN Christ—there is no condemnation.
Love covers over a multitude of sins.
You have given me everything I need for life and godliness.
Help me to love others and not see anyone from a worldly standpoint.
Help me live from a position of rest in You.
Be magnified, Lord!

(c) Kat Kreations

When I Need You

When I need a place to hide,Source
You are my Shelter;
When I need a place to rest,
You are my Strength;
When I need a place for love,
You’re my Security.
When I need You,
You’re all things to me.

Lord, I need You always.
I need You always.
There’s never a day
When I can’t say
I need You always.

When I need a hand to hold,
You are my Comfort;
When I need a light to see,
You are my Guide;
When I need a word of hope,
You’re my Counselor.
When I need You,
You’re all things to me.

Lord, I need You always.
I need You always.
There’s never a day
When I can’t say
I need You always.

You’re my life.
You’re my breath.
You’re the reason I exist.

Lord, I need You always.
I need You always.
There’s never a day
When I can’t say
I need You always.

These lyrics were inspired by a poem written by Rebecca Barlow Jordan.  See the image for that poem.  I’ve sung these lyrics at home, but that tune has yet to be set to music or heard by others.

The drawing was inspired by the cover of a concert program during Sandi Patty’s Another Time, Another Place tour.

Lyrics and colored pencil drawing © Kat Kreations/Kathi Isbell

When He Speaks

One day, when Jesus was visiting Simon, the Pharisee, having a meal at his house … a lady came in. She kept sobbing, kissing Jesus’ feet and washing them with her tears and perfume. Simon tried to tell Jesus what a sinful woman that was at His feet. But Jesus cut him off, and told him this story: “Two men were in debt to a banker. One owed five hundred silver pieces, the other fifty. Neither of them could pay up, and so the banker canceled both debts. Which of the two would be more grateful?” Simon answered correctly, “the one who was forgiven the most.”extravagant

After pointing out to Simon all that the woman had been doing since she arrived, He said, “She was forgiven many, many sins, and so she is very, very grateful. If the forgiveness is minimal, the gratitude is minimal.” Then, He spoke to her–the first words recorded–and said, “I forgive your sins. … Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.” (Luke 7:36-50 MSG)

When we take our wounded and wayward lives (hearts, minds, bodies, spirits) to Jesus, what healing! what pardon! what freedom there is to be found when He speaks forgiveness and peace to us! He wipes the stain away. He affirms our faith. He sends us out in peace, free from the chains we came into His presence wearing.

“I, even I,” said our Daddy, “am He who blots out your transgressions, for My own sake, and remember your sins no more” (Isaiah 43:25). “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing!” (Is 43:18-19a). “I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist” (Is 44:22).

Though we know in our minds that all sin is sin, sometimes the shadow of our chains lurks around when the sin was one of “those” sins … the kind that come with an “open to the public” sign plastered all over them (even when you didn’t post it!). Still, sin is sin and His forgiveness is real forgiveness.

David Seamands once wrote, “When God forgives, He buries your sins in the sea of His forgiveness and forgetfulness. As Corrie ten Boom says, ‘He then puts a sign on the bank which says: NO FISHING ALLOWED.’ You have no right to dredge up anything that God has forgiven and forgotten. He has put it behind His back.” He chooses to forget.

Luke 1 – 19 Leading toward Easter: The Determination of Jesus

Based on Luke 1-19

While looking through the first nineteen chapters of the gospel of Luke, I recorded that which stood out …

We see Jesus announced (Lk 1:26-56); born (2:1-20); dedicated, and blessed (2:21-39); growing up (2:40-52); heralded (3:1-20); baptized (3:21-22); tempted yet victorious (4:1-13); ministering (3:23; 4:14ff);  teaching, rejected, driving out evil spirits, healing, calling followers, praying (with others and alone), blessing and cursing (6:17-26); exhorting, encouraging, loving, anointed, supported by some, sleeping during a storm, silencing a storm, deploying apostles, meeting physical needs, and then . . .

The Twelve returned from their trip of preaching and healing–expecting to rest, recuperate and fill Jesus in on the experience.  This seemed like Jesus’ intentions too; however, the crowds found Him and them.  Jesus welcomed them, spoke to them, healed them and then miraculously fed them. Then, they all finally got their leisure time.

Once, Jesus asked the disciples who they believed He was.  When Peter proclaimed, “The Christ of God,” Jesus dropped “the bomb” that He must suffer much and be killed.  Then He pointed out the cost of choosing to follow Him: The degree of difficulty of following Christ depends on how closely one wants to follow.

Eight days later, Jesus headed up a mountain to pray.  He took Peter, James, and John.  Something spectacular happened up there which conveyed the glory of Jesus ever so brightly.  His Father, himself spoke, identifying Jesus as His Son, who was to be listened to.

The next day it was business-as-usual:  crowds coming up; people being healed and freed from demons; Jesus teaching; people being amazed–and then Jesus states that someone’s going to betray Him. But His followers didn’t understand. Instead, “the boys” argued about who’s the greatest and who can and can’t drive out demons.

Meanwhile, Jesus knew the time was drawing close.  He knew the day was coming when He’d be taken up to heaven, yet He also knew that He must suffer tremendously before that day arrived.  So, He mustered up the “guts” of His humanity and His intense, undying love as deity, and it is stated, “Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem” (9:51).

For Him, there was no turning back.  He made up His mind and set His life’s direction toward Jerusalem.  It wasn’t a popular destination for His followers and He knew what awaited Him if He went.  But greater than that expectation, He knew what awaited all of God’s children if He did not go.  His love for us was the deciding factor and the determining glue which fixed His mind on reaching Jerusalem.

Jesus set His course and continued His ministry “as He made His way to Jerusalem” (13:22).  He held much compassion and sorrow for that city.  He knew of the treatment given prophets and others sent to her.  He had longed to draw her near to His heart, but she was unwilling.

Some Pharisees (not the typical self-righteous, plotting ones of that time it seems) came to warn Jesus that King Herod wanted Him dead.  They strongly suggested He leave and go somewhere else.  But Jesus had a plan and a goal to reach, and He was intent on reaching it.  He kept on going.  He told them that the next time they saw Him they’d be saying blessings to Him (13:35).

Jesus continued on with His traveling as well as teaching, healing, and encouraging. He taught and taught, just like a man who knows He’s going to die and still has much to say. All the while, the self-righteous Pharisees were muttering about Him and sneering at Him.

“On His way to Jerusalem” (17:11), He continued His ministry.  Over and over He did what He came to do among people, as He kept His focus on what He primarily came to do for people.  He mentioned the rewards and celebration for those who follow in His footsteps:  “many times as much” as what one surrenders “in this age and, in the age to come, eternal life” (18:29-30).

He pulled the Twelve aside to restate the plan, “We are going up to Jerusalem” (18:31).  He told of the fulfillment of prophecy that would take place there.  He told of His betrayal, the mocking, insulting, spitting and flogging He must face.  He told them of His death and He gave a burst of hope in saying He would not remain dead, but would rise from the dead on the third day after they kill Him!  All this news and the disciples still didn’t understand.  At least they’d heard it all.

While in Jericho, He healed a blind man’s eyes.  He changed a tax collector’s heart.  He cleared up some misconceptions about the kingdom of God.  (“He was near Jerusalem” at this point –19:11.)

Moving closer, “going up to Jerusalem” (19:28), He paused at the Mount of Olives to have the disciples go acquire some transportation.  They brought a colt to Jesus.  He mounted it and rode into Jerusalem with “the whole crowd of disciples joyfully praising God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:  `Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord'” (19:37-38).

As Jesus “approached Jerusalem and saw the city, He wept over it” (19:41).  If only she’d known what would bring the time of God’s coming to her. And so, Jesus began the last week of His life, having met His goal of going to Jerusalem.

He arrived seated on a colt;

He’d depart nailed to a cross —

all because of His deep and undying love

for you and me!

download this entry

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV®.  Copyright©1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society.

Traces of Our Father’s Handiwork

It had been an extremely rough summer. If there were a way to stretch me or mold me, God found it and did it!!  Finally, it was cool to see that autumn had brought some welcome changes within me.  Daddy is just SO faithful… He does such wonderful work, and it’s much easier to accept when I choose to welcome His “chiseling” and “molding.”  I had been growing utterly dependent upon Him to provide my basic needs, and He continued to be more than faithful to do so.  Eventually, I could recognize that I was growing stronger in the area of depending on Him to be sufficient for all things.  What a hard thing to learn and what a mass of things to have to let go of in my mind in order to embrace such a notion.

Enjoy these ramblings of something that He did to brand into my soul just how interested He is in my knowing, beyond any hint of doubt, that He is continually working for my good, working to make me just like Jesus. . .

On Saturday night, 10/3/12, I went with a couple of friends northward to Berne, IN. We went for a $5.00 Kathy Troccoli (KT) concert that was being hosted by the home church of one of those friends on the trip.   Of course, we were bugging him on the way up about whether or not he’d arranged for us to meet Kathy…  That night with KT turned out to be phenomenal for me!!  Daddy did something that could only be from His hand…. one small, yet huge, act for which only He could orchestrate the sequence of details to be just right.

During the concert a few house lights had been left on and couldn’t be turned off, even though Kathy asked a couple of times.  So, that meant she could see practically everyone… and she was “harassing” some folks in the audience all night or coming down to walk among us and standing on a chair to sing, just being a part of us.

In the middle of the concert or so, she did a few songs from her new cd called Corner of Eden.  One’s called “Take Me With You”…. asking Jesus to take me with Him wherever that may be.  I listened for the words while she sang and “quietly” signed it to myself, “speaking” the words to Him with my hands  (sign language)–something I often do in worship or just to more deeply enjoy or ingrain a song.  The next one was “A Different Road,” about recognizing the past and firmly determining to walk a different road with Him, for things to be different from this day forward.  Again, my heart said, “Oh yes! That’s me too” and I signed with it as well.

Toward the end of the concert, Kathy said, “I want to do one more song for you all” as she walked toward the stairs for the stage and came down to our left.  As she walked along, she said, “I’ve been watching this girl all night…”  She got to our row, looked over at me, and, pointing toward me, said, “You sign, don’t you? …like on `Take Me with You’ ”  I nodded and she asked, “Would you come do this last song with me?”  I went out to meet her in the aisle.  She took my hand as we walked toward the stage.  She paused in her talking to everyone to ask “Do you sign much?” I said (into the mike held toward me) “when I worship.”  She continued to speak to the audience, leading up to the song.

As we climbed the stairs behind the speakers, she was continuing to describe the song to everyone … and she then said the title: “My Life Is In Your Hands”…. I just “looked” at God and said, “YOU want me to say this, don’t YOU?  You want me to believe this! (And boy! do You EVER want me to say it in a big way!)”  And He knows that when I sign a song, it’s not a performance with my hands; but that a song signed comes from all of me, my entire person expresses the song along with my hands, face, and such… and He knows that for me to do that, I have to believe what I’m signing!  He knew…

She asked my name (that was fun). “Kathi,” I said.  She had that look on her face that went with “cool name,” since it was hers too and she chuckled a bit.  She held to my hand behind her back as she continued to introduce the song.  I don’t remember her words.  If I’d listened, I’d probably been a crying basket case.  Then she said, “You stand there, front and center” and she stepped to the side to sing, saying “I’ll feed you the words.” At that, I thought, “Hey, there’s NO need to do that for this one!”  I knew God had THAT under control.  (I was familiar with the song, although the copies of her CDs with that on it I’d given away twice.  So, I hadn’t heard the song for a while, except on the radio.  But I was confident that if He’d gotten me up there, He’d move my hands as they needed to go.)

We did the song together.  Usually when I’m doing something in front of people like singing, signing, or speaking and I can tell it’s really, really ordained by Him, my mouth goes bone dry and my leg shakes.  This time the mouth did its thing, but my hands were what shook.  Yet He carried me through the song, helping me to believe, know, feel and mean each concept signed.

There was an interlude near the end in which Kathy stepped over beside me, gave me a side hug, and then stood beside me to do the chorus again.  As we did, I thought I could see some movement out there (later one of my friends confirmed it)—the people were standing to their feet… (Go, God!)  We finished.  She hugged me hugely and I said in her ear, “Thank you SO much.”  She did that motion toward me for the audience saying “Kathi…” and I don’t remember hearing the hands clapping.  All I could honestly hear was my Father’s confirmation to me that indeed, my life IS in HIS hands!

I left the stage in a bewildered awe and went back to our row… where my friend greeted me with, “Was that not the biggest answer to what you’ve been seeking?!”  As she hugged me tears flowed.  I’m still in awe when I think of that night or testify to what HE did!

It was also wonderful, later, after a long-line wait to get to chat with Kathy and share briefly the impact of that invitation and the encouragement her ministry has had on my life since her early days in ’82-83.  In fact, she’d shared that she accepted Christ in ’78, and that was the year that I became His too.  Over the course of these past two decades, it’s kind of cool that one of the sources He’s used to bolster and enhance my faith has been Kathy’s music….  wow! just, wow!

Our Daddy loves me so much! And I know that He is at work to take care of me through any and all rough days. HE is the strength of my heart (Ps 73) and I wouldn’t want it any other way. He’s becoming the One that I think of most often. I said “becoming” because I still struggle with other pursuits, probably my “thorn” that will keep me humble until I get to go “home free” and be with Him.

Somewhere along the way, I read Max Lucado’s book Just Like Jesus.  Oh! it’s SO good!!!  When we accept Jesus, we get His heart not just His name (Gal 2:20).  He’s made your heart and my heart His home.  Max writes, “He has moved in and unpacked His bags and is ready to change you ‘into His likeness from one degree of glory to another’ (2 Cor 3:18 RSV).  Paul explains it with these words: `Strange as it seems, we Christians actually do have within us a portion of the very thoughts and mind of Christ’ (1 Cor 2:16 TLB).”

Of course, His heart may be in us, but we still have all our hang-ups and we still think so much like us.  That’s what the rest of the book is about… looking at how God sets about to shape our hearts to be like His.  He loves us just the way we are, but He refuses to let us stay that way.  It’s like a dad getting some yummy ice cream for his little girl, only to find when he gets to her that she’s playing in the yard and has dirt in her mouth.  He doesn’t leave her that way; he cleans her up, has her spit out her choice of snack and then gives her the yummy stuff.

Our Daddy’s plan is “nothing short of total transformation: He decided from the outset to shape the lives of those who love Him along the same lines as the life of His Son.” (Rom 8:29 MSG)  “You have begun to live the new life, in which you are being made new and are becoming like the One who made you.  This new life brings you the true knowledge of God” (Col 3:10 MSG).

He’s been giving me tastes of a life consumed by Him… the reality of Him, not some human make-shift image or costume.  I desire my heart to reflect His.  He promises that when we delight in Him, He will give us the desires of our heart (Ps 37:4), most often by making His desires our own.  He shapes ours into a forgiving heart, a compassionate heart, a listening heart, a God-intoxicated heart, a worship-hungry heart, a focused heart, an honest heart, a pure heart, a hope-filled heart, a rejoicing heart, and an enduring heart… as our Daddy makes us more like Him!

Visit Kathy Troccoli’s website at http://www.kathytroccoli.com/ and/or follow her on Facebook and Twitter

 

Faithful Sustainer

Your Word You have kept throughout the ages of time
and throughout the decades of my life.
From day to day You sustain me,
You fashion my heart into one
which will resemble Your own when completed.
You provide for my every need.
You awaken me in the morning,
walk with me throughout the day,
and tuck me into bed at night.
You listen to my cry;
You enjoy my praise.
You answer my requests;
You direct my ways.
I lay into Your hands all that I am;
All that I am becoming, I place at Your feet.
Though my humanity impedes my progress
toward the waterfall of Your holiness,
You make a way; You are the Way:
Your life for my life
to give me life with You eternally
–Thank You, Lord!

©1995 Kat Kreations; written by Kathi Isbell

Our Father’s Love Letter to You and Me

 

I’M YOUR FATHER & I accept you as My unique creation.

Genesis 1:27

I’M YOUR FATHER & I have no intention of leaving or rejecting you.

Joshua 1:5

I’M YOUR FATHER & I walk through the dark times.

Psalm 23:4

I’M YOUR FATHER & I establish this promise:

Psalm 37: 23-24

I’M YOUR FATHER & I see every moment of your life.

Psalm 139:1-4

I’M YOUR FATHER & I praise your achievements both small and great.

Proverbs 27:2

I’M YOUR FATHER & I desire only what is best for you.

Jeremiah 29:11

I’M YOUR FATHER & I just want you to know that I love you.

Zephaniah 3:17

I’M YOUR FATHER & I keep a protective eye on you.

Zechariah 2:8

I’M YOUR FATHER & I believe you are precious and valuable.

Matthew 10:30

I’M YOUR FATHER & I forgive all your sins, even future ones yet uncommitted.

John 1:29

I’M YOUR FATHER & I offered My Son so that we could be together forever.

John 3:16

I’M YOUR FATHER & I zealously look to the day that you come Home to be with Me.

John 14:3

I’M YOUR FATHER & I rejoice over our friendship.

John 15:13

I’M YOUR FATHER & I give you the Holy Spirit to assist you with your prayers.

Romans 8:26

I’M YOUR FATHER & I love you.

Ephesians 5:2

I’M YOUR FATHER & I understand your weaknesses.

Hebrews 4:15

I’M YOUR FATHER & I quickly run to your aid anytime, anywhere.

1 Peter 2:25

I’M YOUR FATHER & I care about your hurts, tears, and all that touches you.

1 Peter 5:7

I’M YOUR FATHER & I marvel at how you have grown and changed.

2 Peter 3:18

I’M YOUR FATHER & I yearn to have fellowship with you.

1 John 1:3

I’M YOUR FATHER & I invite you to let Me into your heart.

Revelation 3:20

(Source unknown)Jesus Loves Me mural on walls in 3 Indiana churches