National Day of Prayer 2017

National Day of Prayer 2017
May 4, 2017 is the 66th annual National Day of Prayer. The theme this year is “For Your Great Name’s Sake! Hear Us… Forgive Us…Heal Us!” Taken from Daniel 9:19, which says, “O Lord, Listen! O Lord, Forgive! O Lord, Hear and Act! For Your Sake, O My God…”.
Let’s join together and pray. Here are a few ideas for prayer:
1. For children, that…
they will know Christ as Savior.
they will obey their parents.
2. For parents, that…
they will be imitators of God.
they will walk in wisdom.
3.For families, that…
they will be committed to loving the Lord and loving each other.
they will be protected physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.
4.For schools, that…
students will grow academically and socially in safe learning environments.
students will learn Christian values and morals.
5.For churches, that…
pastors will clearly proclaim the Gospel.
all church activities will continue to glorify the Lord and draw people closer to Him.
6.For missionaries, that…
they will feel loved and encouraged.
they will be safe as they share the Gospel of Jesus with others.
7.For the government, that…
government leaders will seek the Lord as they lead others.
public officials will live lives of integrity.

And the Winner is…

Congratulations to Mary of Ohio! She is the winner of a free copy of A Heart of Praise! My next drawing will be Saturday, May 13th! I am giving away a copy of I’m Glad I’m a Mom! You can be entered by signing up for my newsletter at http://tenadegraaf.com/site/contact/ AND entered again by liking my Facebook page-Tena DeGraaf-Author & Speaker https://www.facebook.com/tenadegraaf/until May 13th.
Blessings, Tena

Fruit of the Spirit

Today I am sharing some verses to read and reflect on to help develop the fruit of the Spirit in our lives. Some fruits are easier to grow in our lives, but some are more difficult. My prayer is that one of the verses will resonate with you and help you grow.

LOVE
Do everything in love.
1 Corinthians 16:14
JOY
Yet I will rejoice in the LORD,
I will be joyful in God my Savior.
Habakkuk 3:18
PEACE
You will keep in perfect peace
those whose minds are steadfast,
because they trust in you.
Isaiah 26:3
FORBEARANCE
Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?
KINDNESS
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
Colossians 3:12
GOODNESS
Seek good, not evil,
that you may live.
Amos 5:14
FAITHFULNESS
Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
bind them around your neck,
write them on the tablet of your heart.
Proverbs 3:3
GENTLENESS
Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.
Philippians 4:5
SELF-CONTROL
Like a city whose walls are broken through is a person who lacks self-control.
Proverbs 25:28

Lord God, help us to develop the fruit of the Spirit in our lives. Amen.

Spring into Praise

I love spring! Living near Chicago, I am able to fully experience all the seasons, but my favorite time of the year has always been spring. Signs of springtime are all around me as the birds are chirping, the trees are budding, the warm wind is blowing, and the tulip leaves are breaking through the cold, compact dirt. Everywhere the earth is shouting: a fresh start, a new life, a new beginning, and an optimistic view. Thankfully, my winter blues dissipate with each added minute of sunshine and upward degree. As winter bids farewell and spring says hello, my energy increases, and I feel lighter. My entire outlook changes. It is similar to how my view changes when I praise the Lord.  Each time I am depressed, discouraged, or down in the dumps, I have a choice to worship God. When I select this route rather than the road of self-pity, my perspective improves. Faith increases as I begin to acknowledge that God is not surprised by my circumstances, and He is aware of what I am feeling and experiencing. As I trust in Him, I am able to move from a winter-like attitude to a spring-like attitude, full of hope and confidence in God. This is a trust that believes that flowers will bloom out of the overwhelming times and situations. The trials of our lives are the dirt for the beautiful flowers to fully bloom.

Father God, thank you for spring and fresh beginnings. Amen.