Welcome Today I am talking again about one of my favorite subjects, prayer. Prayer is an amazing thing. We are given a path of communication to the most awesome and powerful being, which in itself is a blessing! And today’s recipe is a healthy snack of Strawberry-Pineapple-Passion Fruit Popsicles. Thanks for joining me today. Note-I may receive a small compensation from advertisers or affiliate links found on this blog. For further information, please see my terms and disclosure page.
Food For Thought I often give you a window into my prayer life here at faith-family-food. It is not to show off or make anyone think I have all the answers. You do not see every prayer or spiritual moment I spend with God. But I share these glimpses to show what real faith and real struggle looks like in real life, because that’s what we are all dealing with here…real life. It’s not always tied up neatly with pretty bows, but sometimes a moment of simplicity can bring profound joy. What I share is intended to offer encouragement, and maybe a little help for the right person at just the right time. So today I’m going to share a change I have noticed in my prayer life recently.
Have you seen the movie, War Room? It has become a favorite for me and my husband. I believe we’ve watched it probably 5 or 6 times already. The movie is full of powerful moments, but the overall theme is that God will fight our battles and wars, if we give them over to him in prayer. I believe this, really always have, but went through a period of time in my life when I didn’t apply this belief. In the past year I have found myself praying more frequently, and more passionately, than ever before. I still have my almost-constant little side-talk prayers with God. I mentioned this back when my blog was first getting started in Pray without Ceasing or Let Go and Let God. I also keep a prayer journal and we say blessings before our meals. But I recently found this wasn’t enough to satisfy my need to talk with God, both in praise and petition. I needed more. I needed a “war room,” of sorts. I didn’t set out to establish a war room, emptying out closets and such, like they pictured in the movie. I also don’t have scraps of paper or sticky notes posted around with prayers, although not a bad idea. I just save the writing for my journal. What I needed, though, was a place I could truly get down on my knees, and humble myself in the sight of the Lord. I wanted a place where I wouldn’t be distracted by phone, TV, or computer, or baskets of unfolded laundry. I love my family, but I wanted a place where they wouldn’t interrupt my prayers by asking what’s for dinner or what’s wrong, are you sick? Somehow, the space that has become my own personal war room is our guest bedroom. Our guest bedroom also houses my crafting supplies and a substantial stash of spiritual and inspirational books. It’s a bit cluttered, but it’s bright and airy with lots of windows and I always feel like it’s “my” space. What better place for me to bow down for some Heavenly communication.
Most every day I go to my War Room. It is transforming me, not just from what prayers God is answering for me personally, but it is transforming my spiritual and prayer life for others. I used to tell people I would pray for them, and then casually mention them in my prayer journal or during my bedtime prayer. Now, I passionately take my friends and family to the Lord in prayer, and lift up their needs to Him. My words are spoken with sincerity, not like I’m mechanically checking off my prayer to-do list. I can spend 45 minutes to an hour in prayers, and not even realize that I’ve been praying that long. Praise God that I now have the time to do that! And, most every day I’m in my prayer room, I cry. I admit this because I want to be honest about my prayer experience and what these tears mean. I cry tears of joy and thankfulness when I recognize my blessings and witness answered prayers. I cry tears of sadness and disappointment when I’m praying for God to intervene in a struggle for me or a loved one. I cry tears of frustration when I see injustice in the world around me. But mostly I cry tears of surrender. You see, it is only here recently that I have begun to recognize the need to completely surrender all my needs, wants, and concerns to God. I can’t really explain it and I know some doubt these experiences, but I truly feel God’s presence with me during these prayers. I am moved by the spirit of God, and it brings me to tears. Tears of joy, tears of peace, and tears of surrender.
My prayer room works for me. Some people may like the idea of turning a walk-in closet into their prayer room. Some may turn to their backyard space as an ideal spiritual locale. But wherever you think will serve your needs best, I do encourage you to find a space to devote to time in prayer with the Lord. I think you will be amazed at the transformation you will FEEL.
Today’s Scriptures I found some examples of what I feel were passionate prayers in scripture and would like to share them today.
Passionate praise in 1 Chronicles 29:10-13 “David praised the Lord in the presence of the whole assembly, saying, ‘Praise be to you, O Lord, God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours, O Lord, is the kingdom, you are exalted as head over all. Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things. In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all. Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.”
Passionate surrender in Job 1:20-21 “At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.”
Passionate desperation in Mark 14:34-36 “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,” he said to them, “Stay here and keep watch.” Going a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour might pass from him. “Abba, Father,” he said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.”
Today’s Recipe The calendar tells me that summer will be over tomorrow. However, the thermometer didn’t get the message. We are having a final push from summer this week with a mini-heat wave. What better way to celebrate the end of summer and cool down from the heat with some homemade fruity popsicles. Today we have a very simple recipe for Strawberry-Pineapple-Passion Fruit Popsicles. We happen to have the plastic popsicle molds here at home, but if you don’t have any, you can also use paper cups and purchased popsicle sticks. These two sets are the popsicle molds we use and love (link verified on 9/20/17 at 1:15 pm CDT):
Strawberry Pineapple Passion Fruit Popsicles (makes 8 popsicles, and inspired by popsicle recipes found at Laylita’s Recipes)
- 1 lb. strawberry, chopped finely
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup Splenda, or other sugar substitute, or regular sugar)
- 2 cups V8 Veggie Blends pineapple-passion fruit flavor juice
- popsicle molds or 8 paper cups and sticks
- Combine strawberries, water, and Splenda. Mash together with potato masher until syrupy. Pour, or better yet, spoon into the bottom of 8 popsicle molds. Do not put in sticks yet and place in freezer for 90 minutes. Remove from freezer and divide juice between eight molds. Place sticks in and return to freezer for four hours. Run molds under warm water to release before serving.