Prayer Warrior or Prayer Wimp?

The Bible teaches us in Ephesians 6:10-18 that we are in a spiritual warfare. Our fight is not against flesh and blood but against spiritual, wicked, demonic forces. For that reason, we are instructed to put on the whole armor of God. The Apostle Paul tells us to fight the good fight of faith (1 Timothy 6:12). One of our weapons is the Sword of the Spirit. Just as a good soldier does not go into battle unarmed, we also must fight our spiritual battles armed and ready.

Part of our spiritual armor that is of utmost importance – that we had better not leave off – is prayer. We are told to pray without ceasing. Prayer must not be neglected because when we pray, we get in touch with God. Our guidance, our strength, our power comes from God. Just as we are to be spiritual warriors, we must also be prayer warriors.

However, when the Christian does not take advantage of and utilize this tremendous weapon, he is not trusting in God, but he’s going into battle in his own strength, or rather, in weakness. You don’t stand a chance against your spiritual enemy without God. If you do not pray as you should, then you will not be a prayer warrior, but a prayer “wimp.” You will not be a spiritual warrior if you are a prayer wimp.

In order to become a prayer warrior, one must dedicate oneself to going from a wimp to a warrior. Although it’s not difficult, it’s not easy. It requires time. Time alone with God. Time away from your smartphone and computer. Time away from brain-dead entertainment. Time away from worldly distractions. Many Christians are prayer wimps because they aren’t willing to dedicate themselves to the time required to become a warrior.

Becoming a prayer warrior requires humility. It demands being humble before God in childlike prayer, on your knees, as you seek God’s face and His heart. A prayer warrior recognizes his need for the Almighty on a daily basis, and will bow before His presence in humble servitude to ask for His help.

A prayer wimp will shoot off a thirty-second prayer as he scurries off to his other pressing duties of the day. A prayer warrior will take the necessary time to “suit up” with the whole armor of God, and not run out to face the enemy without taking the time to prepare for the battle.

Sadly, there aren’t too many spiritual warriors and prayer warriors in the churches of today, but churches are filled with spiritual wimps and prayer wimps.

Fellow Christian, how’s your prayer life? Would you be considered a prayer warrior or a prayer wimp? It’s past time for Christians in the twenty-first century to stop being spiritual wimps, put down their electronic toys, and get serious about spiritual things.

Are you a prayer warrior or a prayer wimp?

Sunday Dinner

Sunday dinner is not just a normal meal at my in-law’s house, but it’s more like a weekly family reunion of the Walters family.  My mother-in-law starts preparing Sunday dinner on Saturday evening. No, she’s not making Saturday’s supper, so don’t even think about digging in until Sunday after church!

The preparation continues early Sunday morning before she eats breakfast. Sunday dinner is a special time as we gather round the big table and wait for my father-in-law to pray. “Dad” is always mindful about thanking “Mom/Nanny” for the hard work she has done in making dinner for us all, and then he thanks the Lord for the food, and he thanks the Lord for Mom.

Mom has been doing this for many years, and there’s not many Sundays that she is unable to do it, unless she is not feeling well, or she’s out of town with Dad. Not only does she serve lots of delicious food (and always some type of dessert), but she puts in a good deal of time, energy, thought, preparation and work.

With all of that being said, there is one more thing that goes into this whole process, and that thing is a huge amount of love. There’s lots of preparation that goes into this weekly shindig, and there’s a good bit of cleanup after all is said and eaten. Why does Mom do this week after week, month after month, year after year, and decade after decade? It’s because she loves me, her favorite son-in-law! Of course, that’s not the reason because we have spent most of the past twenty-four years in Brazil. Simply put, Mom/Nanny loves her family, in spite of all the different idiosyncrasies each family has. (Some of my sisters-in-law have some pretty weird ways!)  LOL.

We don’t go to my in-law’s house each Sunday because we “have” to, but because we love her, we appreciate all that she does for us, and because we like to eat her wonderful homemade food. When my family is Stateside and in South Carolina, we count it a privilege to have Sunday dinner with the family. No one at our church needs to ask if I want to go out to a restaurant to eat Sunday dinner. No! (Duh.) I don’t even need to think about it or consult with my wife. The place for all the family to be for Sunday dinner is at my in-law’s house. It’s not a choice we have to think about because it’s automatic. It’s Sunday, and we’re going! If someone wants to take us out to eat, well, let’s go out between Monday and Saturday.

The past two weeks have been rough for my mother-in-law, but she doesn’t like it when someone makes a “fuss” over her when she’s not feeling well. When she was taken by ambulance to the hospital last Friday I was very concerned, and prayed for her a lot that afternoon and evening. I was greatly relieved when I found out that she was feeling better and able to go home. I was also somewhat surprised – though not entirely – that she was at church today, and even in her usual spot of interpreting for the deaf. I don’t know if she fixed Sunday dinner for the family today (I’m in Brazil as I write this), but even though she shouldn’t have, she probably did.

Let me finish my sentimental rambling by saying that I am grateful to God for the wife that I have, and for the mother-in-law that I have. I love her, and she says she loves me (maybe because I did my part in contributing to the majority of her grandchildren, or maybe because I live thousands of miles away). I wanted to let her know that what she does is not unnoticed or unappreciated. As long as I live I will never forget Sunday dinner at Dad and Mom’s house.

Whether it’s Sunday dinner, pizza-movie night, or whatever your family traditionally does, don’t squander those precious times together as a family, but hold on to those times as long as possible. The “good old days” that you will one day look back on are happening right now.

I missed Mom’s Sunday dinner today because I returned to Brazil a few days ago, but I sure could go for a plate of her stewed beef and rice, green beans, and banana pudding!

Friends, don’t take your family for granted. Love them, tell them that you love them, but most of all, show them that you love them. Love your family more than you love your smartphone. You will never regret the time you spend with family members that love you, but you will regret it if you miss an opportunity that you will never have again.

I love Sunday dinner with the family!

A Desire for God

What does a desire for God look like? The word desire has different meanings, as do many words, but the principal meaning is “to long for, or to crave something.”

People have different degrees of desire, such as a desire to visit a foreign country, get a good education or a good job, and have a meaningful relationship with someone of the opposite sex. Many people work hard to save money, study, or whatever it takes to fulfill their desires, even making sacrifices to accomplish their goals, dreams, and desires.

Edward McKendree (E. M.) Bounds was a man of prayer, and he is credited with saying, “A desire for God which cannot break the chains of sleep is a weak thing and will do but little good for God after it has indulged itself fully.”

For the Christian, a desire for God should be greater than anything else. If you can get up at 4:00 o’clock AM on Black Friday to go shopping, or get up before dawn to go hunting, but you can’t break the chains of sleep to spend time with God, then your desire, love, and commitment to God is a weak thing.

Going back to my original question, what does a desire for God look like? It looks like someone who sets their alarm early in order to pray and read God’s Word. It looks like a committed Christian on his/her knees in prayer to ask forgiveness, guidance, to worship, praise, and make supplication for others. It looks like a saint of God with an open Bible – not a digital, electronic app – that has a desire to learn, grow, and draw closer to God.

James 4:8 says, “Draw nigh to God and He will draw thy to you.” No one draws nigh to God by accident. To draw nigh to God requires a desire to draw nigh which not too many Christians possess. By the way, yes, I know this is the 21st century, and I know that it’s hard to separate time for God. However, it all boils down to how great your desire is for God, and it shouldn’t be that difficult to draw nigh to the One that loves you with an everlasting love.


Everyone will fall and hurt themselves from time to time. If possible, you will get back up and continue on your journey. You may not be able to get back up without help, but hopefully someone will come along soon and help you back on your feet. You may feel the results of that fall for a long time, but you can only get back up once from one fall. You cannot get back up five times if you’ve only fallen once.

This same principle applies to when a Christian sins. When you sin, there may be long-lasting feelings of hurt, resentment and shame. However, when you repent, confess your sin to God and ask for His forgiveness, He will forgive you the first time you ask. Once God forgives you of that sin, then you do not need to ask His forgiveness for five or ten more times. Yes, you will feel the guilt and shame for some time, but God’s forgiveness is immediate, so you don’t need to confess it or ask for His forgiveness anymore. With God, when you’ve been forgiven, it’s over with. As Jesus told the woman taken in adultery, “Go and sin no more” (John 8:11).

Now, you may need to ask someone else to forgive you, so do it without delay.

You will also need to get over it yourself, and not allow that FORGIVEN sin to linger on in your heart and mind. The devil wants that sin – that’s already been forgiven – to keep you down, discouraged and disheartened for a long time. He wants you to feel the pain, the shame, and think about it after it’s already been forgiven. If you confessed and asked God for forgiveness of sin yesterday, then He forgave you yesterday. Don’t allow the forgiven sin of yesterday to hold you down today!

How Do You Identify?

It’s incredible that in today’s world, a person can identify as anything he wants to identify as, and it doesn’t even have to be a person. Men are identifying as women, women are identifying as men, and some people are even identifying as animals.

The same type of thing is happening in Christianity. Some people identify as “Christians,” and an increasing number of Christians are identifying as unbelievers.

You can read about the unbeliever that identifies as a believer in Matthew 7:21-23. Jesus said that there will be those who stand before God that sincerely identify as Christians and will even point to their good works as “proof,” but Jesus will sadly say, “I never knew you.”

 On the other hand, there are Christians today that, by their lifestyle, are identifying as unbelievers to their peers.

For example, police officers have a badge, a uniform, a gun, and some other pieces of equipment that will identify them as law enforcement officers. Military personnel are easily recognized by their uniforms, as well as their strict military demeanor and discipline.

Unfortunately, there have been imposters that have put on a uniform to either draw attention to themselves, or to receive honor and respect of which they are unworthy. They have identified as something they are not, but they are not what they want you to believe they are. These types of people are often referred to as, “wolves in sheep clothing.”

Going back to the example of the Christian identifying as an unbeliever, the person who has been saved but does not act like a Christian causes the Holy Spirit of God to grieve. The Christians that want to fit in with the world are like, “sheep in wolves clothing.” I cannot understand why a Christian would want to identify as a “wolf.” There is danger in hanging out with the wolves because they will identify you for who you are, and they will eat you up!

Does the music you listen to “identify” you as a Christian or an unbeliever? Do the clothes you wear make it easy to identify you as a Christian, or do you look like the rest of the unsaved world? What about the movies you watch and the words you say? When other people look at you and listen to you, when they see you at certain places that are questionable, how would they identify you?

It greatly concerns me to see that so many Christians are completely comfortable and “feel at home” among people that are drinking, dancing, going to worldly concerts, listening to rock, funk, rap, and country music. More and more Christian women are copying the fashion of the world in regard to short skirts and dresses, tight jeans, and bikinis. When Christian men want to flaunt their manhood with tight clothing, going around shirtless, and sporting tattoos, this is not an indication that, “after all, this IS the twenty-first century,” but rather an indication that we may be living in the end times.

In today’s world, the feeling of many people is that they don’t care what other people think of them. There is a growing trend among Christians that says, “I am who I am, and I don’t care what you think because I am who God made me to be.” The problem with that thought process is that, even though God made you and saved you, He didn’t mean for you to stay the way He found you. He certainly doesn’t want you to copy the world and be identified as an unbeliever. Yes, every person is unique, but the Christian needs to be very careful about not caring what others think of you. You are supposed to be copying Jesus Christ, and your identity in Christ is what others must see in your life.

The Bible says, “love not the world, neither the things that are in the world” (1 John 2:15,16). In 1 Peter 1:16 and 17, the Christian is commanded to, “be holy” in all aspects of life. If a Christian is living a life that is unholy and sinful, and also loves the things of this world, then he or she is not “identifying” as a Christian at all. Don’t identify as a Christian on Sunday and identify as an unbeliever the rest of the week. Love God. Hate the world.

Christian friend, what you identify as is very important. What other people identify you as when they see you is also extremely important. How do YOU identify?

To whom are you submitting?

Although every Christian is not called into full-time ministry, every Christian should be involved in some ministry of their local church on a voluntary, part-time basis. When you were saved, you were separated from the world in order to serve the Lord. A Christian that is not serving God will not hear, “well done, thou good and faithful servant,” at least, not from the mouth of Jesus. Could it be that you’ll hear those same words from the devil? Of course not, because Satan will not be present when you stand before the Lord.

However, what if the devil were to be in the near vicinity when you stood before God as rewards are given out? Would you hear the Lord say to you, “well done, thou good and faithful servant,” for a life that has been faithfully active in serving God? Or, would you hear Satan scornfully say, “well done, thou good and faithful servant,” because you did nothing in service to God?

Just as Joshua told the children of Israel, God’s chosen people, to choose whom they were going to serve, it’s possible to be a child of God, and at the same time be serving Satan. The word, “serve” is a verb, a word of action. It’s also a word that denotes that someone has authority over you to whom you must submit. Are you actively serving God, or have you submitted to Satan? To whom are you submitting?

Those who do not submit to God are, “by default,” submitting to Satan.

Don’t be a child of God, while at the same time being a servant of the devil. If you’re saved, serve God with all your heart, mind, and soul. Serve God with everything you are, and everything you have. Serving God is loving God. If the only thing you do at church is to show up in time for the service, and then leave at the final, “Amen,” you’re missing out on an opportunity to serve the Lord. You’re not only missing out on being a blessing, but you’re also missing out on receiving a blessing. Serving the Lord is one of the best things you can do after you are saved.

I know that every Christian is not called to be a full-time pastor, missionary, or evangelist, but every person who is saved is called to be a full-time Christian who is serving God in some capacity of ministry.

Are you fulfilling your calling? If not, determine to stop serving the enemy, and start serving the Savior today!

Discouragement or Encouragement?

“Discouragement” is a dark and awful place. Don’t go there. You may be tempted to go there when things aren’t going your way. When you have a loved one that is sick or having problems, Discouragement is the last place you need to go!  When someone breaks your heart, stay far, far away from Discouragement. When it seems as if the world is crashing down around you, you don’t need to run to Discouragement, for it is a lonely, sad place. I know that many people are there, but they are sad and lonely, too.  “Misery loves company,” and they will only make you even more miserable than you already are.

When the storms of life hang dark and heavy, instead of running to the place of Discouragement, you should head straight on over to the place called, “Encouragement.”  I know you won’t feel like going there, but it’s the best place to go, and you’ll be glad you went. There are happy people there that will help you. They can’t dispel the storm clouds in your life, but at least it won’t be so gloomy. 

When your storm passes, and you feel encouraged, then it would be good if you went over to the place of Discouragement to try and help someone that may be stuck there.  Discouragement is an easy place to go to, but difficult to leave. There are many people there that need help leaving the muck and mire of Discouragement. Only a person who has been to Encouragement can help a person leave Discouragement.  YOU can be that person!

Friend, I don’t know where you are today, and I don’t know what is going on in your life. Run to the place of Encouragement, for Jesus is the King there, and He is all about loving and helping and encouraging you.

The king of Discouragement is the devil, and he wants you to avoid King Jesus and Encouragement.

Every day you make choices in life. You will choose who you’re going to be with, what you’re going to do, and where you will go. Choose to go to Encouragement and choose to go with those that will encourage you.  Those who are discouraged will try and lure you to that horrible place of Discouragement.  Don’t go!

When things seem to be going “all wrong,” stop in your tracks, turn around, and make a beeline for Encouragement.  Someone will be waiting for you with outstretched arms, a shoulder to cry on, and a listening ear.  When things go wrong, go right to the place of Encouragement.  You’ll be glad that you did.

Two Years of COVID

In March of 2020, the whole world came to a screeching halt with what is now called, “the pandemic.”  Schools, businesses, and churches were closed as governments around the world ordered their citizens to stay at home.  And stay at home we did.  Fear gripped the world as the COVID plague was out of control.

It’s been two years.  For a good part of the past two years, people have spent countless hours playing online games, watching innumerable movies, and being “glued” to an astronomical amount of YouTube videos. While many people have done workouts and learned to cook new recipes, I would venture to say that a large percentage of people have “wasted” nearly two years of their lives.

I’m not going to do a Google search of things that you can do in two years, but I know that it’s possible to get an Associate degree from your local community college or technical college in two years. I understand that those colleges were also closed part of the time, but while it seemed as if life had come to a standstill, time did not.

Now that businesses and schools are open again, let me encourage you to consider either taking an online class, or even going to a class in person.  Maybe you started college but never finished.  Think ahead to the NEXT two years, and consider the possibilities of learning a trade, or getting an Associate degree, or even finishing college.

Don’t waste the next two years playing Minecraft or Call of Duty. Don’t throw away your life watching endless movies or videos. Think, plan, and get up from the couch to start living a productive and meaningful life.  

In two years, your life can be completely different, and you can be going to places of which you’ve only dreamed. Or, in two years, you can still be sitting on your couch, doing the same old thing, and going nowhere.  Don’t be satisfied with doing nothing, when you could be learning, growing, and going places.  You’re never too old to learn something new.

Let me challenge you to make some goals and make some changes in your mundane way of living. Perhaps in two years you will write me to say “thank you” for encouraging you to get busy and do SOMETHING.  I hope so.

The best time to get started is now, so don’t waste another day.  The past two years of the pandemic are history.  The future lies straight ahead, full of adventure and opportunities just waiting for you. Are you going to miss out?  I hope you don’t. Make a decision to improve your whole being (spiritual, physical, mental), and begin this two-year journey today.  In two years, will you look back with satisfaction and gratitude, or will you look back with regret?  The choice is up to you. 

“Evangelize? Who? Me?”

What is the greatest thing that has ever happened to you?  If you are a Christian, your answer should be when you got saved. We’re talking forgiveness of sin, not going to “Hades” (a literal place of fire and suffering), but going to be with Jesus your Savior for all eternity.  Stop and think about that for a moment. Isn’t that the greatest and best thing that has ever happened to you? Of course, it is!

Now, do you know anyone who is not saved?  Sure, of course.  Do you want them to spend eternity with Jesus, or with Satan?  If you thought, “Jesus,” then what are you doing to introduce them to the Savior?

You know how you were saved, but can you explain to someone else how they can be saved?  If you do, then when was the last time you tried to win someone to the Lord?

I know that’s none of my business, but it is YOUR business, and it’s YOUR responsibility to take care of YOUR business.  If you don’t know how to share the Gospel, let me encourage you to learn.  Ask God to give you one person with whom you can share the Good News of salvation.

Don’t be surprised if God gives you more than one person, and more than one opportunity. The world is full of people who need Jesus.  Pray, “Lord, please give me one person.” If every church member would do that, your church could double in size this year. That’s my prayer, and I hope that you will make it your prayer, too.

“Live Chat Café”

If I was a businessman, I would open a “Live Chat Café.”  This would feel like stepping back in time, to the age before smartphones.  It would be a coffeehouse for “old people,” a place for people who actually want to have a “live chat,” a conversation in person, face to face, without having to check their phones every 20 seconds. Oh, young people could go there, too, but I would somehow have a place to store the patrons’ phones while they are there.  Some people who are dating, or engaged, or newly married might go there. This would be a place where the people at the table would give their full attention to the other people in the conversation, and not be distracted by their phones. 

Probably 99% of what screams for your attention on your phone doesn’t require immediate attention.  You see, I would open this coffee shop for those who want to be “all in” on the conversation they are going to have.  I get tired of seeing people seated around the table who are off on another planet, playing a game, or scrolling on Facebook.  You know, the “important” stuff.

This could be successful for a while, at least until all the “baby boomers” died out. Then it would become just a thing of the past, too, like meaningful conversation has.

I know I’m old, and some of us old-timers don’t fit well in the 21st century, but we won’t be here for very much longer.  Your older parents and grandparents would love my coffeehouse, and I am sure that they would love it even more if their children and grandchildren would take them there to just talk, and listen, and be engaged in the conversation.

You know, like it was before smartphones.