Faith and prayer are the vitamins of the soul; man cannot live in health without them.Mahalia Jackson
Do you experience a moment in your day when your energy is just drained out for no apparent reason? Thought of being tired and hopeless and just do not have the motivation to be engaged in anything? Depression is not a fun experience to be in. I am not sure if I have depression, I doubt that I have. But I have seen people who were depressed.
When I look at them, I do not see joy nor life in their eyes. Moreover, the urge to help is there but I also feel helpless about how to help them. What I do most of the time is offering a prayer. Either silently or aloud with them. Because I know that God is able to help them for He knows us inside out.
History to Understand God’s Word
Ezra, which means Yahweh helps in Hebrew, was a prophet in the Old Testament during the time Israel was exiled in Babylon. They had a “second exodus”, but the difference is now only those who choose to leave Babylon left. The first was with Zerubbabel, who rebuilt the temple in Jerusalem and the second was with Ezra himself.
Today’s devotional reading is from the Book of Ezra 3:1-7. Please, read our recent devotional from the Book of Acts 3: Are Great Wonders Needed In Order To Repent?
Like the Israelites who left Babylon, let us be in God’s presence daily by offering our time. Devote your thought, speech and actions to Him who have freed us from the bondage and slavery of sin.
How is your Spiritual Health?
I am not going to discuss eastern mysticism, which people typically relate to spirituality. However, Christianity has to look into one’s spiritual health as well. The spirit in us, when we are following Christ, is the Holy Spirit. With this, Jesus said, I will not leave you as orphans (John 14:18 ESV). But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. (John 14:26 ESV)
So how does one make sure that they are spiritually healthy? No need for emptying yourself, no mantras needed to chant, and no need for yoga or some sort of practice. In order for someone to be spiritually healthy, one should be doing three things that Jesus and His disciples did. First, prayer. Second, fasting and finally, studying God’s word.
Effects of Prayer and Fasting
Prayer is present in all religions of the world. But you know what is different between Christianity and other religions? Jesus hears and answers our prayers. Of course, not the way we wanted our prayers to be answered, but He answers according to His will.
Fasting is not that common in today’s Christians. Probably, they forgot when Jesus mentioned, And when you fast, (Matthew 6:16 ESV). Furthermore, it is clear that Jesus said “when” and not “if”; fasting is not an option but a practice one should do. There are lots of people of God that fasted even before the time of Jesus.
Reflection on God’s words
We cannot emphasize the need for a Christian to immerse oneself in the word of God. It is vital and should be done daily. One cannot claim to be a full-fledged Christian but does not read and worst not believe in the scriptures.
Paul wrote to Timothy the importance of why we should be studying God’s words when he said, Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth (2 Timothy 2:15 KJV).
Also, read the article how to Make Your Bible Reading Habitual And Joyful
This is the time for your journaling. Reflect on these questions. Ask the Holy Spirit to test your faith and your walk with Christ.
Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? — 2 Corinthians 13:5 KJV
- Are you a believer of Christ? Accept Jesus Now.
- How is your spiritual health?
- Do you have a schedule for prayer and bible devotional daily?
- When and How do you fast?
- Do these activities help your faith and hope in Christ?
Almighty Father, we give praise to your name. We thank you for the Holy Spirit, who is guiding us every day of our lives. Who encourages us and strengthens our faith and hope in You.
Oh Lord Jesus, we thank you for not leaving us alone to wander aimlessly in this word. We thank you for teaching the apostles what we now read in the pages of the Bible.
May the Holy Spirit guide us as we pray fast and study the scriptures that will help us act in accordance with God’s will and strengthen us until the day of the judgement.
All these we pray in Jesus’ name. amen.