We thank God for our food, we ask Him to heal Aunt Thelma's painful gout, and when the red and blue lights circle with sirens, we beg Him to get us out of the imminent speeding ticket. Often prayer conversations are one directional and needs-based—hardly a conversation. What if we spent more time and effort reflecting, contemplating, listening or simply just being in the presence of our Almighty Creator? The Prayer Crossing: A 28-Day Guide to Quality Time with God, provides contemplative guidance for Christians to both talk and listen to God. With the use of scripture, interactive devotional content, and journaling, participants are challenged to self-assess, soul search and actively listen for the still, soft voice of God.
Life is crazy, so why should prayer be complicated? The Prayer Crossing Personal Devotional invites readers to draw near to God through honesty and transparency in their prayer life. By emphasizing quality time, the book will daily guide readers into creating a daily habit of personal fellowship that is enjoyable and life-giving. This devotional is not a "five-minute-fill-up" but rather is designed to enhance your quiet time and make room for Jesus. The Prayer Crossing Personal Devotional will keep you intrigued, draw you deeper and nourish your soul. Say "good-bye" to stagnant devotionals and be propelled into intimacy that matters.
Rebecca Greenfield has given us much to consider when it comes to spending "quality time with God" as opposed to merely spending "time with God."
The Prayer Crossing Personal Devotional provides a monthly guide to a much needed spiritual discipline that we can repeat throughout the calendar year.
Each week begins with "Monday Manna" and concludes with "Sunday Stillness."
This workbook is creative and clever, full of stories, application, and journaling, while also referencing popular culture and drawing from the rich tradition of Christian theology and literature.
Anyone looking to grow in Christ will find this a useful resource.
Dr. Joel Soza, Professor of Biblical Studies, Malone University and author
I had the pleasure of interviewing Rebecca on my radio show about her book "RAW" and I thought what a powerful and anointed author.
I heard the soft words of a woman that is kind and full of the Love of Christ. I was so excited to preview, "The Prayer Crossing Personal Devotional."
This devotional is a great way to set a daily goal to be devoted and balanced in our prayer life.
Joyce E. Hardnett, Radio show host, author and CEO of Destiny Changers Foundation, Inc
Rebecca writes in her book, The Prayer Crossing Personal Devotional, "Sometimes it is easy to forget the call or vision God has placed on our lives,
especially if our lives have been disrupted with confusing heartache, dashed dreams, and tormenting losses."
I couldn't agree more. Thanks to her 28-Day Guide to Quality Time with God you will learn how to transition your quiet time from reading about God to conversing with Him.
Is there a pressing need on your heart? Do you need to hear His still small voice? This book is a great place to start!
Renee Fisher, Author, Writing Coach & Biz Consultant at ReneeFisher.com
I invite you to share this amazing book with friends, family and colleagues. What a way to enrich one's journey than to Empower the Spirit within.
I look forward to many more Holy Spirit filled words from this new author, Rebecca Greenfield.
As our Women2Women Ministry touches lives of children (mere babies) being victimized in human trafficking to adult victims, this is a Rx to begin the healing.
Sallie D. Gibson, Founder of Women2Women
And So They Went Back to Fishing
Rest is necessary for proper mental, physical, and spiritual health. Even God rested on the last day of creation (Gen 2:2). The Ten Commandments again stresses how important God deems rest to be, "Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy" (Exodus 20:8). Jesus states how God specifically designed rest for humans because it is in our best interest to cut out time for a break, "The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath" (Mark 2:27).
Take a brief inventory of the "down" moments during your days this week—the moments you weren't working, taking care of someone or something or completing necessary tasks. What did you do during your free time as you relaxed (i.e., watched TV, browsed social media, napped).
Do you think you ever spend too much time doing the above items you listed? ______________________________________________________
Do you ever retreat to your free time activities because of:
Mental Necessity? ________
Aside from Judas, the Disciples had been devoted to Christ, even until the Garden of Gethsemane. They believed in a King who would reign forever and even though Jesus spoke of His death, they did not fully grasp the implications of their powerful King dying a scoffer's death (Matthew 26:2). They followed Him almost to the very bitter end, but their humanity got in the way and they lost their vision—they forgot the call of Christ.
Jesus knew His disciples would soon forfeit their devotion to Him as the persecution unfolded prior to His crucifixion. Hours before His arrest He warned them, "This very night you will all fall away on account of me, for it is written: 'I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered'" (Matthew 26:31). As the events unfolded, and the long-awaited Messiah fell subject to Roman law and hostility, the fearless leader of the disciples appeared to have died like a weak vagrant unable to defend them or Himself.
Jesus' predications came true—Peter denied Jesus three times before a day had even passed and "all the disciples deserted him and fled" (Matthew 26:56). The disciples had officially, unequivocally, without hesitation abandoned their loyalty to their King, their trust in His abilities and their belief in the vision of redemption He had spent years explaining.
As darkness came upon the mid-day, their leader gave up His spirit and died shamefully on a criminal's cross. It was over. His body was wrapped, He was put away in a tomb and there appeared to be no hope of a reversal to the tragic events. Day 1 passed—mourning, grief, confusion. Day 2 passed—processing, memorial, finality. Day 3 passed—moving on, attempts for closure, many "Now what?" questions. These disciples had given up their livelihoods to devote themselves to a cause—a belief bigger than them. They had poured their hearts and energy into a man that promised to be the One talked about for centuries before—the Messiah that was supposed to save them. But now, the vision didn't make sense. How was He supposed to save them when He was dead? All those years they devoted to Him, but now was it for no good reason? Should they have left their business, their livelihood, all that they knew to follow someone who would die? It didn't make sense. The vision was gone, the calling was confounding and the events inexplicable.
So they went back to what they knew—they went back to fishing. What does anyone do when their hopes are dashed and their goal and plan they had been working towards seems to take a drastic turn south? They go back to what they know—the familiar, the ordinary, the safe.
Simon Peter, Thomas (also known as Didymus), Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two other disciples were together. "I'm going out to fish," Simon Peter told them, and they said, "We'll go with you." So they went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing.
Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realize that it was Jesus.
He called out to them, "Friends, haven't you any fish?"
"No," they answered.
He said, "Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some." When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish.
Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, "It is the Lord!" As soon as Simon Peter heard him say, "It is the Lord," he wrapped his outer garment around him (for he had taken it off) and jumped into the water. The other disciples followed in the boat, towing the net full of fish, for they were not far from shore, about a hundred yards. When they landed, they saw a fire of burning coals there with fish on it, and some bread.
Jesus said to them, "Bring some of the fish you have just caught." So Simon Peter climbed back into the boat and dragged the net ashore. It was full of large fish, 153, but even with so many the net was not torn. Jesus said to them, "Come and have breakfast." None of the disciples dared ask him, "Who are you?" They knew it was the Lord. Jesus came, took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish.
The disciples weren't living-out their spiritual gifts, they weren't proclaiming the promises of Christ or explaining the death and imminent resurrection of Jesus. No, they were fishing. They didn't know what to do with their lives after everything happened, so they returned to what they knew, what was familiar and something that required no faith.
After Jesus finishes eating with the disciples, He meets specifically with Peter and restores the calling on His life. Back and forth they go—Jesus asking if Peter loves Him and Peter responding shamefully, timidly that he does love Jesus—painfully recalling how he had abandoned Jesus before His crucifixion. But Jesus, in all fullness and authority, bestows on Peter a grace and forgiveness Peter did not deserve. He professes over Peter that Peter's life still has purpose and will be used to glorify God by ministering to the multitudes. Jesus reminds Peter that he is more than a fisherman, he is a fisher of men for the kingdom of God.
Things to Consider
Sometimes it is easy to forget the call or vision God has placed on our lives, especially if our lives have been disrupted with confusing heartache, dashed dreams, and tormenting losses. The darkness comes over the mid-day, and we lose sight of that initial relationship, passion and love we once had when we first followed Christ. The fire grows cold and apathy sets in so we return to filling our days with empty entertainment. We turn to social media and scroll through others' lives, either comparing ourselves or living our lives vicariously through others' apparent happy moments. We turn on the TV and drown ourselves in shows that take us away from reality and make us covet a future or possessions we don't have. We go back to fishing—to the ordinary tasks, the climbing of the corporate ladder, the self-promotion and self-preservation. We go back to what we know—what's common, what's safe.
If life seems a little meaningless or stagnant, maybe you've gone back to fishing. Perhaps you are waiting for an infusion of excitement, adventure, or hope. Could it be time to put down your phone, stop scrolling through social media, shut off the TV and awake from the nap? Rest is a good thing and relaxation is necessary, but when your rest has stolen your joy and your relaxation has made you comatose to the passions of this life, then the good things have become a hindrance.