Archive for the ‘Solitude’ Category

October 4th, 2013

Meaningful Times of Prayer

“But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matthew 6:6 (NIV)

Jesus solidifies the discipline of securing a location to connect with God in prayer. Why would the location matter? Can’t you connect with God in prayer from any location? Yes! God can retrieve your prayer from any location, but Jesus is affirming the value of having a special place for communion in addition to practicing God’s Presence throughout the day.

When you look into the rear view mirror of your life, where were you when you had the most meaningful times of prayer with the Lord? Can you identify a literal location? What was the environment like? Was it in the morning, at mid-day, in the evening, or into the night?

Maybe you already have that special place where you meet with God to read His Word and to spend time in unbroken fellowship with Him in prayer. Perhaps you have not selected that special place yet. Think about your schedule and think about a location that will enhance your daily quiet time alone with God. If you prefer solitude, then find a place that will ensure an environment of solitude. If you love the outdoors, find a place outside that helps you best connect with God. If you enjoy worship music playing softly while you commune with God, then have the music ready.

Remember that God will reward you for your private time alone with Him. God desires intimacy with you and has made that level of connection available to you. What will you do with the opportunity God has given you to know Him more?

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, October 4th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Prayer, Prayer Closet, Solitude.
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August 29th, 2013

Voice of Truth

“All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him down the cliff. But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way.” Luke 4:28-30 (NIV)

Jesus communicated to His hearers in the synagogue that a prophet is not accepted in his hometown. He was implying that many would miss the fact that He was the Messiah and forfeit the benefits just as many in Israel did not enjoy the benefits of the ministry of Elijah. The people were so furious with Jesus that they tried to throw him down the cliff. Jesus’ popularity in His hometown was not very positive!

Your identity is not based on what people say about you. Your identity in Christ is based on what God says about you. You are shaped by God’s hand. Your destiny is determined by the loving provision of your Heavenly Father. In the midst of opposition and being misunderstood, you can stand firm in the security of your identity in Christ.

  • “‘You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit–fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.’” John 15:16 (NIV)
  • “‘If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.’” John 15:18 (NIV)

Find a place of solitude and begin to eliminate the voices of falsehood and tune in to the voice of Truth! Now listen for God’s voice and allow Him to affirm your identity in Christ. Remember who you are in Christ!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, August 29th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Identity, Jesus, Solitude.
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October 4th, 2011

Meaningful Times of Prayer

“But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matt 6:6 (NIV)

Jesus solidifies the discipline of securing a location to connect with God in prayer. Why would the location matter? Can’t you connect with God in prayer from any location? Yes! God can retrieve your prayer from any location, but Jesus is affirming the value of having a special place for communion in addition to practicing God’s Presence throughout the day.

When you look into the rear view mirror of your life, where were you when you had the most meaningful times of prayer with the Lord? Can you identify a literal location? What was the environment like? Was it in the morning, at mid-day, in the evening, or into the night?

Maybe you already have that special place where you meet with God to read His Word and to spend time in unbroken fellowship with Him in prayer. Perhaps you have not selected that special place yet. Think about your schedule and think about a location that will enhance your daily quiet time alone with God. If you prefer solitude, then find a place that will ensure an environment of solitude. If you love the outdoors, find a place outside that helps you best connect with God. If you enjoy worship music playing softly while you commune with God, then have the music ready.

Remember that God will reward you for your private time alone with Him. God desires intimacy with you and has made that level of connection available to you. What will you do with the opportunity God has given you to know Him more?

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, October 4th, 2011 at 1:00 am
Category Prayer, Prayer Closet, Solitude.
Interact No Comments
August 29th, 2011

Voice of Truth

“All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him down the cliff. But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way.” Luke 4:28-30 (NIV)

Jesus communicated to His hearers in the synagogue that a prophet is not accepted in his hometown. He was implying that many would miss the fact that He was the Messiah and forfeit the benefits just as many in Israel did not enjoy the benefits of the ministry of Elijah. The people were so furious with Jesus that they tried to throw him down the cliff. Jesus’ popularity in His hometown was not very positive!

Your identity is not based on what people say about you. Your identity in Christ is based on what God says about you. You are shaped by God’s hand. Your destiny is determined by the loving provision of your Heavenly Father. In the midst of opposition and being misunderstood, you can stand firm in the security of your identity in Christ.

  • “‘You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit–fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.’” John 15:16 (NIV)
  • “‘If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.’” John 15:18 (NIV)

Find a place of solitude and begin to eliminate the voices of falsehood and tune in to the voice of Truth! Now listen for God’s voice and allow Him to affirm your identity in Christ. Remember who you are in Christ!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, August 29th, 2011 at 1:00 am
Category Identity, Jesus, Solitude.
Interact No Comments
August 11th, 2009

Bringing Your Worship: Intimacy

“‘Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.’” John 15:4 (NIV)

To nurture an abiding relationship with Christ involves a daily experience.

Your private worship is vital to having an ongoing vibrant love relationship with Christ. Are you growing in your daily intimacy with God? It takes time to develop intimacy. You may say that you just don’t have enough time to fit private worship into your schedule. The reality is that we make space for that which we value. Do you value intimacy with God? Are you willing to plan for and prepare for a daily experience with God?

If you go on a business trip or on a family vacation, you prepare for it. If you are anticipating a major exam in school or fulfilling a commitment to teach a small group Bible study, you prepare for it. The same is true in our daily walk with God. To have a meaningful and productive daily experience with God, you treat it as something you value and treasure. You prepare for your daily intimacy with God.

If my private worship time alone with God is important, then how should I prepare for it? Select a time each day when you are at your best. Find a physical location that enhances your experience with God. If you enjoy nature, then plan to have your quiet time outdoors. If you enjoy soft music playing as you spend time with God, then have the music ready for the moment. If you prefer solitude, then search for that room or closet or other environment that will provide that kind of atmosphere. Have a Bible reading plan in place whether it is to read through the Bible in one year, read one chapter, or read a few verses each day. Choose to jot down insights gleaned from your reading time. Reflect on what God is saying to you. Spend time in prayer sharing your heart with God and listening for His voice.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
(This devotional was originally posted in ’07 or ’08. I’m taking a break from writing for a season of personal renewal.)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Abiding in Christ, Christ-centered, Intimacy with God, Solitude, Worship.
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May 21st, 2008

Bringing Your Worship (2)

“‘Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.’” John 15:4 (NIV)

To nurture an abiding relationship with Christ involves a daily experience.

Your private worship is vital to having an ongoing vibrant love relationship with Christ. Are you growing in your daily intimacy with God? It takes time to develop intimacy. You may say that you just don’t have enough time to fit private worship into your schedule. The reality is that we make space for that which we value. Do you value intimacy with God? Are you willing to plan for and prepare for a daily experience with God?

If you go on a business trip or on a family vacation, you prepare for it. If you are anticipating a major exam in school or fulfilling a commitment to teach a small group Bible study, you prepare for it. The same is true in our daily walk with God. To have a meaningful and productive daily experience with God, you treat it as something you value and treasure. You prepare for your daily intimacy with God.

If my private worship time alone with God is important, then how should I prepare for it? Select a time each day when you are at your best. Find a physical location that enhances your experience with God. If you enjoy nature, then plan to have your quiet time outdoors. If you enjoy soft music playing as you spend time with God, then have the music ready for the moment. If you prefer solitude, then search for that room or closet or other environment that will provide that kind of atmosphere. Have a Bible reading plan in place whether it is to read through the Bible in one year, read one chapter, or read a few verses each day. Choose to jot down insights gleaned from your reading time. Reflect on what God is saying to you. Spend time in prayer sharing your heart with God and listening for His voice.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, May 21st, 2008 at 1:00 am
Category Abiding in Christ, Intimacy with God, Quiet Time, Solitude, Worship.
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January 5th, 2008

Something Great (5)

Do something great by releasing the past.

“Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” Phil 3:13-14 (NIV)

Don’t allow your past to prevent you from doing something great for God in the future. Everyone has a past. Everybody has pollution at some level in their past. We have made decisions we regret, said hurtful words we regret, and have had impure thoughts. We have caused pain in the lives of others and we have also been the recipient of pain from others. Living in a fallen world becomes evident by looking into the rearview mirror.

Paul enjoyed the favor of God. While participating with God in the redemptive process, Paul also encountered the trauma of severe persecution. His rearview mirror included scenes of immense failures and tremendous successes. Paul understood the vital importance of releasing the past and embracing the future.

Memory has power. Satan uses memory to immobilize us. God uses memory to remind us of the depth of His love. God wants to do something great through your life in spite of your past. God factored in your sin before you were even born. God made provision for your sin and your success by allowing Jesus to pay your sin debt in full.

Find a private place of solitude. Take out a notepad and ask God to reveal un-confessed sin in your life. In the quietness of the moment, begin to write down what God reveals to you. Specifically confess each sin by agreeing with God that you have broken His heart and missed the mark. Now receive God’s cleansing for your sin and release the past.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Pastor of Leadership and Pastoral Care

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, January 5th, 2008 at 1:00 am
Category Forgiveness, Memory, Redemption, Solitude, Something Great.
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April 1st, 2007

Solitude

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.” (Mk. 1:35 NIV)

Can you imagine having a daily appointment with the Creator of the universe? What would you say? How would you prepare for such an important meeting? The reality is that you have that wonderful privilege of connecting with the Creator. Through the completed work of Jesus on the cross, the divine connection has been established. Can you hear me now?

The challenge for us is not making the connection. God took the initiative to bring us into a vibrant love relationship with Himself. The challenge is for us to carve out unhurried time to be alone with Him. Jesus modeled the value of solitude throughout His earthly ministry.

We must consciously practice solitude. Solitude becomes the environment by which we bend our ear and our will toward the echo of God’s whisper. What needs to change in your daily routine to make room for connecting with our Creator? What adjustments do you need to make in order to practice solitude?

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Pastor of Leadership & Pastoral Care

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, April 1st, 2007 at 3:00 am
Category Habits, Intimacy with God, Solitude.
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