Lent Bookclub Part 24: Essential ingredients for a breakthrough

Chapter 11: Warfare; Part 2: Victory Strategies

The Bible is a book full of battles, which comes in handy when you’re reflecting on battling in prayer. One of the things which most inspires me about the way victories happen in the Bible stories is that God so often does unexpected things with unexpected people in unexpected ways. That heartens me because it means I don’t need to become an impressive warrior or a conventional superhero. I just need to be myself and do my thing.

These are a few thoughts on Gideon, who isn’t in the book (though he is in my last book!). I find his story helpful because he had to make a stand in a rather unconventional way, and his strange battle strategy helps me keep my battle strategies rounded and grounded.

I hope you enjoy thinking about him, and I hope it helps you get your own battles into perspective.

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Lent Bookclub Part 12: Don’t feel bad for getting bored

Chapter 5: Action; Part 2: Doing and Making

I often teach on prayer and personality, and it’s always the bit on Action Prayer that gets the best response … people coming up to tell me that it’s been a real lightbulb moment for them, or that they suddenly feel released to be themselves. I think that’s perhaps because, over the centuries, the church has often had a bias towards quieter, more sedentary forms of prayer, and that has left some people feeling distinctly inadequate.

If you’re the kind of person who finds stillness and wordy prayer rather boring … if you’re like the apostle peter and you fall asleep all too easily during prayer times, then this chapter is yours. And this podcast is just a few more thoughts on how you can pray in ways that suit you better. It’s also to reassure you that you’re not less holy or prayerful, just because you don’t find it so easy to sit still.

And the question of the moment: what activities have you turned into prayer acts today?

https://anchor.fm/lyndall-bywater/episodes/Dont-feel-bad-for-getting-bored-Chapter-5-Part-2-e3iqmc

Being included and being enough – Thoughts on Moses’ calling (Exodus 3:1-12, 4:1-9)

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of leading a day-retreat for The Salvation Army’s divisional (regional) prayer co-ordinators. The retreat was based around these thoughts on Moses and his calling.

 

Invitations can say so much. If a friend asks you along to their dinner party because ‘you’ll be the life and soul’ then you could be forgiven for feeling under pressure. If a friend says, ‘Just come as you are and we’ll get take-away,’ then a wholly different evening is in prospect.

 

A calling is basically an invitation, and when we listen to the language of that invitation, it gives us some idea of what is (or isn’t) expected of us. Are we being invited for a relaxing evening with take-away, or are we expected to make the evening go with a swing? Since Moses was being invited to lead a whole nation out of slavery, we might reasonably assume this was a call to deliver something immense – far more immense than livening up a dinner party. But when we examine the burning bush encounter more closely, we discover that God’s invitation to Moses wasn’t so much an invitation to super-hero-dom as to just being himself.
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