The 5 P’s of Faith

Spirit of Faith

It has been almost two months since I last posted here at The Prayer Journals. Within two weeks after my last post, Praying the Scriptures, I received and accepted a job offer from a nationally respected insurance company.

The Lord has blessed me abundantly throughout my lifetime. And in writing my spiritual memoir I was communicating how I was transformed by growing closer to God, particularly since the collapse of my career in the summer of 2009 during the biggest economic collapse since the Great Depression. Yet here I am again. I have experienced another sudden end to what I thought was a beginning of a new career to only have the company to completely dissolve operations this time. My reaction to the unsettling news would be much different than the summer of 2009 because I listened to the prompting of the Holy Spirit to fully and completely turned my face towards Jesus Christ.

Praying the Scripture

“If (I) have died with Christ, (I) believe that (I) will also live with him. (I) know that Christ, who was brought back to life will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. When he died, he died once and for all to sin’s power. But now he lives and lives for God. So (I) consider (myself) dead to sin’s power but living for God in the power Christ Jesus gives (me).” Romans 6:8-11

The “5 P’s” of Faith

No doubt many of you have heard the phrase, “Prior planning prevents poor performance.” Often that phrase is heard when someone must make a presentation to another or a group of people. I heard it many times throughout the course of my sales management career.

God has awesome power to turn the negative into a positive

When my career came to an end in 2009, I was two years shy of turning 50 years old. I feared I would never obtain a job worthy of my past position. I was right. I didn’t. At least not in terms of compensation, but I would gain something even more valuable – insight into the power of faith in God. With God and his angels on earth, I created a job in the form of a contracting business in another sector of the financial services industry. It would help keep my family financially afloat.

God be the glory!

Within seven years in 2016, I was given an opportunity of full-time employment in a related sector in the financial services industry of the contracting business I had created. The position offered learning new skills, stability in compensation, a retirement plan, and dinner every night with my family.

Again, God was firmly in control.

So, when the news came again that I would need to look for a new job on Friday, April 13, 2018, I turned to my own “5 P’s” statement. It has become my personal statement of faith.

“Poised prayer produces purposeful performance.”

What does this statement mean?

Poise: God is control

God is in control of all situations and outcomes. That is, if I allow Him to be in control of my life rather than the world.

Prayer: God’s promises and presence

Praying without ceasing relying on God’s promises and fervently asking for His presence in my life and in all situations.

Productivity: Positive attitude

In my fervent prayer to God, asking for his help to present a positive Christ-like attitude that reflects the power of His mercy, love and peace.

Purpose: In joyful service

Accepting wherever God places me, so I may joyfully serve others in Christ’s name to fulfill His purpose through me.

Performance: God-centered

And in every position, not just in my job, but in all I do and say that I may keep God as the center of life’s work giving Him all the glory and praise.

“Blessed is the person who places his confidence in the Lord.” Psalm 40:4

The attitude of Christ

“So then, as Christians, do you have any encouragement? Do you have any comfort from love? Do you have any spiritual relationships? Do you have any sympathy and compassion? Then fill me with joy by having the same attitude and the same love, living in harmony, and keeping one purpose in mind. Don’t act out of selfish ambition or be conceited. Instead, humbly think of others as being better than yourselves. Don’t be concerned only about your own interests, but also be concerned about the interests of others. Have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.” Philippians 2: 1-5

On May 29th, a full month after my last blog post, I started a new career once again. At the end of this coming week, I will have been employed one month at this new company. I am thoroughly enjoying it! I know that all I have gone through in my life, God has and will continue to prepare me to joyfully serve with the attitude of Christ. I gratefully give Him ALL the Praise and Glory.

My prayer journal of May 3, 2018 – Accepting an offer of employment

Dear Lord, Great and Wondrous God who is in control of this world and of my life, it is with thanks and praise I acknowledge Your majesty and power. Because in Your steadfast love and mercy You have made Yourself my Father in Jesus Christ and recreated in me the image of Your holiness. I cannot by fully comprehend the extent and fullness of Your love. In faith, I thank and praise Your grace and mercy. You do so much for me without any merit in me that I all I can do is thank and praise Your holy name through Jesus Christ, my Lord. Amen

(Prayer adapted from the Lutheran Book of Prayer.)

May I pray for you?

The Prayer Journals blog is my personal spiritual journey in conjunction with writing my spiritual memoir. My posts in 2018 are a series relating to this theme. If you have just joined The Prayer Journals, I hope you will take the time to explore previous posts on this site.

Please join me next time as I continue my series, Getting to Know God.

Please reach out to The Prayer Journals if I can answer any questions about keeping a prayer journal of your own. A prayer journal is an intimate communication between you and God. You don’t have to be a master writer. Perhaps you are an illustrator, a painter, a poet, a lyricist or creator of scrapbooks. Use your gifts to communicate with God however you wish in your prayer journal. God enjoys hearing from you and you will be blessed!

Blessings on your day,

Sheri

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Power of Prayer and a Prayer Journal

A Daily Discipline

Since the financial crisis of 2009, I have searched for a new career that will allow me to take care of my family and provide a reasonable retirement. It’s been a difficult journey financially and emotionally these last seven years of primary self-employment. Yet, I am grateful that God has provided for us in many ways I could not have imagined prior to 2009.

A couple of weeks ago I happened upon a job posting on LinkedIn that was very similar to my past career prior to 2009. Everything about the company, job, and the outlook was perfect (well, as perfect as anything can be, right?) I had a short telephone interview with the human resources manager who recommended me to the hiring manager. My personal interview with the hiring manager, seemed in my opinion, to go great. She enthusiastically said I met all of her criteria for the position and could not name one objection that would prevent her from extending an offer to me. She told me she was recommending me to go to the next step in the hiring process – an interview with her boss. Now it is important for me to note that this company and her boss was known to me as a client of my previous employer before the downturn. So I believed my chances of moving forward and possibly being hired were excellent. But instead of a telephone call after the Memorial Day holiday to schedule the third interview, I received the typical rejection email notification from the human resources manager. Needless to say, my heart sank and a few tears were shed.

“God? I don’t understand. What more can I do?”

I am disappointed. Discouraged? I would be lying if I said I wasn’t. But what my prayer journal has helped me to overcome in the last seven years is despair. I have received literally hundreds of rejection emails from prospective employers that didn’t even give me a chance to interview, and hundreds more from companies who never responded to my resume and application. I have applied for all types of jobs with varying pay scales.

Rewind the clock five days

I went back to my prayer journal to read what I had written the day of my interview with the hiring manager. On the last page for that day, I had written the following passages.

My prayer: “Lord, when the odds are against me, help me to remember You have a plan for my life. Amen”

Further down the page: “No matter how He answers my prayer, can I trust and love Him?”

Fast forward to today

5262016   Today, I have written in a bold marker for journal entry 5/26/16:

“Yes! Lord, I trust and love you always! I do believe you have a plan for my life, and it may not be one I ever expected, but Lord, you have always taken care of me. Thank you, Lord. I praise your name. Amen”
PRAY

The confidence in prayer comes from the power of God’s Word. My prayer journal time is reading God’s Word and reading a number of different Christian devotionals for a perspective that helps me to understand how God is working in my life.

“God’s word in the Bible can have power only because it corresponds to God’s word in the universe. It is the present Voice which makes the written Word all-powerful.” A.W. Tozer

Parables on Prayer – Luke 18:1-8

Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lose heart, saying, “In a certain city there was a judge who did not fear God and did not respect man. There was a widow in that city, and she kept coming to him, saying, ‘Give me legal protection from my opponent.’ For a while he was unwilling; but afterward he said to himself, ‘Even though I do not fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow bothers me, I will give her legal protection, otherwise by continually coming she will wear me out.’” And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge *said; now, will not God bring about justice for His elect who cry to Him day and night, and will He delay long over them? I tell you that He will bring about justice for them quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?”

God’s Word and the daily discipline of writing in my prayer journal has taught me to go to God first because only He can bring immediate peace over my situation – that is the power of prayer and the power of a prayer journal.

Journal Tools

As I have mentioned in earlier posts, I leave space in each day’s entry for when God answers prayers. Today was a prime example of needing that extra space!

Because I journal early in the day and often throughout the day, I usually re-read my daily journal entry prior to my evening prayers. I also believe that re-reading my journal at the end of the month helps me to see the progression of my relationship with God. I may even read several of my past prayer journals.

In the past when I would have received yet another rejection letter, I would have had a complete meltdown and would be depressed for days. Yesterday, I had a few tears, but today my faith in God is stronger and His Word gives me hope. That is the power of prayer. It is also the power of a prayer journal to see how far I have come in faith, hope, and love of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Praying the Scripture:

“Now may the God of hope fill (me) with all joy and peace in believing, so that (I) will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

Psalm 62:5-6
My soul, wait in silence for God only,
For my hope is from Him.
He only is my rock and my salvation,
My stronghold; I shall not be shaken.

Prayer Writing Prompts:

How has prayer strengthened my relationship with God?

What do I do when things go wrong or go badly?

May I pray for you?

Email:          Hoot@TheBloggingOwl.com
Twitter:       @PrayerPrompts

Blessings on your day!

Sheri