YouVersion Devotional

Good Grace

If there’s anything the man after God’s own heart knew, it was that He could do nothing in his own strength. David needed the help of a holy God to survive. He clung to His faith, even in the most difficult times. You see evidence of this in the songs He wrote. Psalm 121 is one of those songs that echoes David’s deep dependence on the graceful care and provision of God. 

He writes: 

“I lift up my eyes to the hills.

From where does my help come?

My help comes from the Lord,

who made heaven and earth.”

In this statement, David acknowledges that God is both His Creator and Sustainer. It’s a beautiful psalm of worship that pushes readers to examine exactly who they depend on. When you choose to depend on yourself, or others around you, there is always some way to be let down. Brokenness is not mended by adding more brokenness. Brokenness only finds healing when it is fully restored and made new.

When Jesus came to die on the cross, He made a way for your brokenness to be made new. Just as He explained to Nicodemus in John 3, Jesus has come so people could be born again. Not a physical rebirth, but a spiritual one—allows for the brokenness in your hearts to be made whole again through belief in Jesus. You get a brand-new life. That is good grace. 

Now, everyone who has received this grace is a part of the family of God. You can access the people of God to help you remember where your help comes from. When you can’t speak, they speak for you. When you can’t sing, they sing over you. Just like David reminded you in Psalm 121, your spiritual family is there to help you, encourage you, and remind you that the hope you need for every circumstance is found at the cross.

God is madly in love with you. Why else would He willingly die and take on the weight of your sin? Why else would He give you the people of God to lock arms with when times are tough? Remember the sacrifice of Christ and join in praise with the people of God. Watch the walls come down. Watch His kingdom come. Watch His will be done. All because He chooses to extend His good grace to those who call upon His name.

YouVersion Devotional

YIELD: The Fourth Step in Effective Prayer
Psalm 37:4 provides us the “Y” in the acronym P-R-A-Y, the four elements to effective prayer we have been discussing over the last few devotionals.

Here is what Psalm 37:4 says,

Delight yourself also in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.

Now the Hebrew word for delight in this verse literally means to become soft or pliable. This means that “delighting” in the Lord is assuming a yielded posture before God.

So the “Y” in P-R-A-Y stands for yield. The question is: How do you practice yielding to God when you pray? Yielding is when you stop talking, and you wait, listen, and seek to hear from God.

In my own practice of prayer, I will often bow before God and ask Him, “God, is there anything You want to say to me? Do You have any instructions for me? Is there anything You want me to change?”

Then I silently wait for Him to speak to me.

As you assume this posture of being yielded and waiting quietly before Him, you will be surprised at some of the things that come to your attention: “You need to spend more time with your daughter,” “Take your wife out on a date,” “Bake your neighbor a pie and build a bridge over which the gospel can travel,” “Spend more time praising Me,” “Show your gratitude and appreciation for those who have been helping you in your life.”

You will indeed hear from God if you ask Him to speak into your heart, and wait silently before Him.

That is the last element of effective prayer: praise, repent, ask, yield. Your prayers can indeed be effective if you commit to these four principles. That is how to P-R-A-Y.

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