Sunday, August 16, 2020

Equipped for Turbulent Times - Part One

I've written quite a bit lately about the turbulent times we are living in. It's not often we experience a worldwide pandemic, civil and racial unrest and  the upheaval of a contentious election season all at once! However, it's important to remember that even though the events of 2020 may have caught us by surprise, none of these things have been a surprise to God. There is nothing that we face that He hasn't equipped us to walk through. For the next three Sundays, let's focus together on some of the "tools" in the toolbox that God has given us for turbulent times.

The Mind of Christ
For who has known or understood the mind (the counsels and purposes) of the Lord so as to guide and instruct Him and give Him knowledge? But we have the mind of Christ (the Messiah) and do hold the thoughts (feelings and purposes) of His heart. 1 Corinthians 2:16 AMPC

In turbulent times opinions fly like an infestation of gnats. It can become quite overwhelming, confusing and frustrating. What we need more than the opinions of man and even more than the counsel of our own thoughts is to know how Jesus sees things and what He thinks about them. His Word tells us that we can know the thoughts and feelings and purposes of His heart. I believe it's as simple as asking Him and then being willing to let go of your own long standing ways of thinking, reacting and responding. Try to think two thoughts at the same moment-it's impossible! Likewise, we can't think our own way and God's way at the same time.

Let's turn this truth into a point to pray about.
Dear Father God,
Oh, how I need your guidance and instruction and knowledge in these confusing and turbulent times. I am asking You to give me the mind of Christ as Your Word promises. I want to know Your thoughts, Your feelings and Your purposes for my life and for (name specifics situations or circumstances).  Silence the loudness of my own thoughts, the thoughts and opinions of others and the voice of the enemy and help me to hear Your voice and Your thoughts above all others.
In Jesus' Name. Amen.

The Counsel of the Holy Spirit
But [only] with [God] are [perfect] wisdom and might; He [alone] has [true] counsel and understanding. Job 12:13:AMPC

And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, and Standby), that He may remain with you forever— John 14:16 AMPC

But the Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, Standby), the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My name [in My place, to represent Me and act on My behalf], He will teach you all things. And He will cause you to recall (will remind you of, bring to your remembrance) everything I have told you. John 14:26 AMPC

It's almost instinctual to run here and there looking for godly counsel. We have a problem and we phone a friend. There's nothing wrong with that, but perhaps a good habit for you and I to develop would be to remember to talk to God first. He gave us the Holy Spirit to teach and guide and counsel us. How sad if we neglect to ask for His counsel. Of course we also have to learn to listen to His still small voice speaking to our spirit.

Let's pray.
Father God,
Thank You that when Jesus left this earth and returned to heaven to sit at Your right hand, You didn't leave us alone here on planet earth. Thank You that You sent the Holy Spirit to live in my spirit-to strengthen my innermost being and personality, to help me to pray, to guide me and to counsel me. I'm asking that You will help me to hear the counsel of the Holy Spirit. I especially need His counsel about________________. Thank You, Father God. Now I ask that You also give me spiritual ears to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit and strengthen my will to obey what He says to me.
In Jesus's Name. Amen.

The Word of God

Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of Your law. Psalm 119:15 AMPC

Your testimonies also are my delight and my counselors. Psalm 119:24 AMPC

My life dissolves and weeps itself away for heaviness; raise me up and strengthen me according to [the promises of] Your word. Psalm 119: 28 AMPC

This is my comfort and consolation in my affliction: that Your word has revived me and given me life. Psalm 119:50 AMPC

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. Psalm 119:105 AMPC

Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration) and profitable for instruction, for reproof and conviction of sin, for correction of error and discipline in obedience, [and] for training in righteousness (in holy living, in conformity to God’s will in thought, purpose, and action), 
1 Timothy 3:16 AMPC

The Word of God, the Bible, is the plumb line of truth against which we are to measure all other thoughts and opinions and ideas. For example, if you believe that you have heard the voice of the Holy Spirit in your spirit, if it is truly God's voice then it will never contradict the Word of God. God gave us the rich treasure of His Word to renew our minds, to comfort us, to guide and direct and teach us and even to correct us. The simple truth is, it is impossible to live an overcoming, victorious Christian life, especially in turbulent times, without feeding our mind and nourishing our spirit with God's Word.

Dear Father God,
Thank You for the living and active and powerful Word of God! I need Your Word to renew my mind, to align my thoughts with Yours, to give me insight and understanding, to guide me in Your truth. Oh, Father, open the eyes of my heart to Your Word, use it to open my understanding and to enlighten me about Who You are and Your ways, about myself and things that need to change within me and about the people and world around me and your purpose and plan for me in the middle of it all. 
In Jesus' Name. Amen.

Wisdom of God

If any of you is deficient in wisdom, let him ask of the giving God [Who gives] to everyone liberally and ungrudgingly, without reproaching or faultfinding, and it will be given him. James 1:5 AMPC

Well, you can't get more clear than that verse! If you or I need wisdom in these turbulent times, (and who doesn't!), then we simply need to ask God who promises that He will give us wisdom liberally and ungrudgingly without reproaching or finding fault with us. Let's Ask!

Dear Father God, 
I need wisdom. I specifically need your wisdom about __________________. You said to simply ask and so here I am asking. Give me the wisdom that I need, Father. My mind and heart are open to what You want to reveal to  me.
In Jesus' Name. Amen.

I hope you find these scriptures and prayers helpful. Next week we will feature three more of God's wonderful tools that we need as we walk through these turbulent times.


  1. I remember the days when I'd call friends about my challenges - my poor friends - when I learned to take them directly to God - all that stopped. When I get the urge to call a friend about a heart issue - I recognize it as a call home - a call to go sit with the Father and pour my heart out to Him. I'm sure my friends are much happier about that! LOL - This struck me - "we can't think our own way and God's way at the same time" - I know we're not to be double minded but I so like how you said this - it reminds me to put aside my thinking or opinion and be obedient to God and sit under His authority! Awesome post Elizabeth!!!! ~ Shalom, Maryleigh

    1. Thank you, Maryleigh. You are a blessing and encouragement!


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