Luke 21:31 (God is always near)

27 Nov Luke 21:31 (God is always near)

Let’s welcome God today by reflecting on this short Living In Faith Exchange (LIFE) Group devotion (, which is based on Living Faith. All whatsoever you do in word or in work, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Col. 3:17

When you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near. Luke 21:31 (full readings)

Living Faith snippets: “There is no surer sign that God is with us than when we are in pain. During the dark times of our lives, the very times when we might question whether God cares for us, God is at hand. God is like the neighbor who brings a covered dish and checks to see if there is anything else she can do to help, anything at all. God will not forget the ones he loves.” by Karla Manternach

Rich’s comments: It is difficult to recognize that God is with us when we are suffering or in despair. Sometimes it is during these moments that we feel most alone and think that God is not listening to our prayers. We need to have confidence that God is always with us. He inhabits our despair as well as our praises. We just have to be willing to look for Him in the suffering and not seek to run from it. It is this faith in God’s presence that will carry us through the difficult times. During my tough times, I like to think about the famous poem “Footprints in the sand,” and imagine God walking beside me throughout life.

Faith Challenges: Let’s all invite one person each week (John 14:6) to join our LIFE Group (~250 of God’s children).

* NEW: Look back on the footprints of your life and see when God was walking beside you or maybe even carrying you through the tough times.

Counter-Culture News: LifeSiteNews, American Family Association, Priests for Life

* Let’s never forget the horrific reality of abortion (images)…#1 cause of death in America. Let’s courageously share ProLife Truth to create social tension for exposing abortion’s unjust peace…rebuilding a Culture of Life (Matt 5:16) for setting the unborn (and parents) free!

Our Prayers: Those who pray together stay together. Fasting ideas in footnote below.

* Prayer to end abortion, abused children, chastity, peace, our enemies, our troops, depression/despair, prisoners, politicians, illnesses/injuries, jobs, natural disasters, refugees, addictions, persecuted believers, Peters family (JP, Rebekah), Joe (brother Mike), Doug Young (special intention), Pat Castle (health care reform bill), Joe (daughter’s pregnancy), Aaron Ferrie (special intention).

NEW: Vicki (cousin & new born baby in car accident; cousin was 8 months pregnant)

Faith Quote: “During your times of trial and suffering, when you see only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you.” – Jesus

Through Christ our Lord,
James 1:22

* Prayer: Prayer connects us with God’s will & His miracles, changing us & helping others. ‘If you pray that God will move a mountain and He doesn’t, assume Christ wants you to climb it instead.’

* Fasting: Let’s fast from things that take our eyes off Jesus (selfishness, pornography, bitterness, criticalness, impatience, gossip, excessive video games, etc) and take on things that fix our eyes on Jesus (selflessness, kindness, compassion, forgiveness, patience, understanding, caring, helping, listening).

* Defend the unborn: ‘Rescue those who are unjustly sentenced to death; don’t stand back and let them die’ (Prov 24:11). ‘Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you’ (Jer 1:5). ‘It is a great poverty that a child must die that you might live as you wish’ (Blessed Mother Teresa).

* Evangelization: Let’s make room for unbelievers (be a friend, make a friend, lead a friend to Christ) and perpetual re-evangelization of self and those near us, by way of daily prayer (relationship) and following Christ’s example of selfless love, mercy, and service (Matt 28:19).

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