Dec 2017

Comfort is Coming

I see many postings on social media about what a difficult year 2017 has been. It was challenging to many, but it was also a shift year, a transition year, a breakthrough year. Through the hardship, we received mercy. Through the struggles and pain of loss, we are coming to know the God of All Comfort. See, if we let the Holy Spirit be our comforter, He will console us and heal our hearts. Then, we become equipped to help others who will encounter similar losses. This is especially true where we become equipped to help the unsaved when they will have nowhere to turn. Let Him heal you.

“All praise goes to God, Father of our Lord Jesus, the Anointed One. He is the Father of compassion, the God of all comfort. He consoles us as we endure the pain and hardship of life so that we may draw from His comfort and share it with others in their own struggles.” (2 Corinthians 1:3-4; The VOICE)

Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:

  • If you had a hard circumstance to overcome in 2017, bring it back up to the Lord right now.
  • Bring the pain and the questions and the heartache to the foot of the cross and ask the Lord for a Divine exchange – His comfort for your grief, his blessing for your poverty, His healing for your sickness and disease, etc.
  • His scripture is healing. Look up Bible verses that can serve as a balm of Gilad to heal your heart.
  • Tell Jesus that you are willing to partner with Him to heal the hearts of those who don’t know Him.
  • Ask God to heal our nation’s wounds, as well.

A prayer you can pray:

Father, let me tell You about the heaviness on my heart. Let me tell You where I feel I need You most. (Bring the pain and the questions and the heartache to the foot of the cross and ask the Lord for a Divine exchange – His comfort for your grief, his blessing for your poverty, His healing for your sickness and disease, etc.) Lead me to scriptures that I can pray over my life – those that will heal my mind and emotions. I want to be thoroughly healed by You, so I can help lead others to you. Show me how to help heal this nation’s wounds, as well, Jesus. Amen.

Today’s decree:

I decree that God is taking our pain and making us a compassionate nation!

Dec 2017

The Reward of Friendship With God

As far as we know, only two people on earth were shown by God who the Messiah would be – two who waited on Him in the courts of the Lord. One was a priest named Simeon and one was a prophet and intercessor, Anna. These were not religious ones or they would not have recognized Jesus at all. These were those with Gods own heart, His friends, those with His eyes and His ears – eyes that see and ears that hear. He made them a promise, and, as old as they were, they saw that promise fulfilled. Jesus, the Savior of the world, was revealed to them.

“Anna, a prophet, was also there. She was a descendant of Phanuel from the tribe of Asher. She was now very old. Her husband had died seven years after they were married, and she had been a widow for 84 years. Anna never left the temple courtyard but worshiped day and night by fasting and praying. At that moment she came up to Mary and Joseph and began to thank God. She spoke about Jesus to all who were waiting for Jerusalem to be set free.” (Luke 2:36-38; GWT)

Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:

  • How’s your love life – with God, that is? We can all find more time to hang out with Him and fall even more deeply in love. Decide to do that as you move into 2018.
  • If you want to know God’s plans, see things as they unfold, and understand what is happening in current affairs, you are going to have to spend time with Him. There are no short-cuts. Ask Him to help you with a new level of discipline.
  • The natural response to seeing Jesus is telling others about Him. This will be the wave of evangelism about to hit our shores. It won’t be because we went to school to learn how to evangelize. It will be because we have been with Jesus and are compelled to tell others about Him. Pray it in!

A prayer you can pray:

Father, I want to fall even more deeply in love with You. I want to just hang out with you a part of every day. Minimize distractions in my life and draw me to You. Heal any broken, fearful places in my heart, so I don’t hesitate. Show me what You want me to see. I want to see Jesus, and I want to see what You are doing in America and the rest of the world. You are up to something and I don’t want to miss out on a thing! Stir my heart to want to tell others the things I know of Jesus. Spark the wave of evangelism in my neck of the woods. Use me in my circle of influence. Amen.

Today’s decree:

I decree that the Bride is coming into more intimacy in order to go out into the harvest fields!

Dec 2017

Jesus Unites and Divides

The Christmas story, as recorded in the Book of Luke, goes on for a while. A significant moment is when Jesus is taken to the Temple at 8 days old for his circumcision. Simeon, a priest at the time, was able to see Him. He was one of two people that God had revealed His plan to. God had told Simeon that he would see the Christ before he died, and this was the day! He prophesied that Jesus would be divisive. Imagine that being said of your child. God is one who unites men. He also divides – soul from spirit, thought and intent of the heart, light and darkness, and wicked from pure motives of the heart. He raises some up and takes others down. All of this is to draw men to Him.

“Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: ‘This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.’” (Luke 2: 34-35; NIV)

Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:

  • Is there an area of your heart that has become offended at God? Repent.
  • Let Christ shine His marvelous dividing light on your heart and deliver you from sinful, selfish motives, thoughts, and actions. Thank Him!
  • Now, you can intercede with a pure heart for others that you know are caught up in the same issues and pride. Pray for them as the Lord reveals their situation to you.
  • Pray for your Senators and Congressmen today – there is great need for pure hearts in Washington right now.

A prayer you can pray:

Father, where my heart has become offended at You and the way You have worked in my life, forgive me. Heal my heart and draw me closer to You. You are always good! I welcome Holy Spirit’s bright, holy light to shine in every nook and cranny of my heart. Straighten out the crooked and iniquitous thoughts, motives, and actions. Deliver me, so I can intercede for others with grace and anointing. Then, we can all be free together! I lift up my two Senators and my Representative and ask that you purify their hearts, as well, so they may serve the people well. If they resist You, remove them. In Jesus Name, amen.

Today’s decree:

I decree that God will continue to clean up Congress by dividing darkness from light in the hearts of this nation’s leaders!

Dec 2017

God Came Down

History shifted the day that Jesus was born! God became man and began to dwell among us. Oh the angelic rejoicing! Mankind would have an opportunity they hadn’t had since Adam and Eve fell into sin – man would walk and talk daily with God again. Intimate friendship! Face to face discussions. God came down. He came to give hope to the hopeless, forgiveness to the sinner, sight to blind, and hearing to the deaf. He came to show love to the lost and rejected ones. He came to the lonely and the oppressed. Nothing about Him has changed. He still comes to us each day just the same. Find Him today at your point of need or in your place of rejoicing! Merry Christmas!

“’Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.’ Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.’” (Luke 2: 11-14; NIV)

Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:

  • Open your Bible and read Luke 2:1-20 and Matthew, chapter 2.
  • Pay attention to the timing and the sequence of events. Notice how the enemy immediately tried to take Jesus out. Talk with your family about these things you noticed or write them down and think about them through the day.
  • These are the things God wanted us to know about His son coming to the earth. He wants us to see that despite the peril to Himself and His plan, He came anyway. He is that desperate for relationship with you.
  • Put on traditional Christmas worship songs today or sing a few carols that speak of Him and His miraculous birth. Make this a day of worship!

A prayer you can pray:

God, I am in awe! Christmas has a new meaning for me this year! It is always such a special season, but I feel You revealing Yourself in such a real way more and more. You are pouring revelation of Yourself and Your ways out on the Ekklesia. You are drawing us to Yourself. What a story Jesus’ birth is! It was dangerous and magnificent all at the same time! It was glorious and just the beginning of a whole new chapter in the earth – the chapter of “God With Us, the hope of Glory!” I will worship You all day long today in the midst of the gifts and the meals and the fellowship with family and friends! Jesus, I thank You for coming on that beautiful night long ago. Amen.

Today’s decree:

I decree that today Jesus will be revealed more than ever before! God is with us!

Dec 2017


The next twenty-four hours of most Americans’ lives will be expressed in numerous traditions celebrating Christmas. For most, there will be an acknowledgement that this is a celebration of Jesus’ birth. For some, it will only be a series of traditions. The Bible tells us that God commanded that some events be continuously celebrated, so His wonderful acts are remembered by His followers. Christians celebrate few of those today. Even though we love it very much, Christmas was not one of those commanded remembrances. In other cases, God rebukes the Israelites for “rote and form”, because it keeps people distant from relationship with Him. Here at GiveHim15 and Dutch Sheets Ministries, we pray that you have a memorable Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, celebrated with all the family traditions that make it precious to you and yours. And, remember to keep Jesus at the very center of all that you do! Merry Christmas!

““My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant.” (Luke 1:47-48; NIV)

Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:

  • Think about the various traditions you will participate in today and tomorrow. Can you see Jesus in them? Even playing games together as a family can be a celebration of Christ’s work in your hearts. Find Him there.
  • Worship Jesus! Sing hymns and carols and glorify God in your heart.
  • Pray for your family, friends, and neighbors. Intercede for members of the military far away. Pray for President Trump and his family, that they get much rest in their celebration time together.
  • Include a single person or an elderly couple in your family time. Or, go and minister at a shelter or church outreach. Many are lonely and in need of Jesus and they feel it most at Christmas time.

A prayer you can pray:

Jesus, today and tomorrow I am celebrating You! Amidst everything there is to do and all of our holiday plans, I want You to be front and center. I will worship you, singing Christmas songs that so beautifully honor You. Hear my intercession for my family and friends (pray for them for a few minutes). Be with our military members who are far away from their families today. Let them know that you are close. Keep them safe. And, Jesus, give our President and his family a good day of much needed rest. Amen!

Today’s decree:

I decree that Jesus will be exalted in our Christmas traditions all across America this year!

Dec 2017

We Must See Jesus!

Since the wise men from the east saw God’s star in the sky, men have laid everything aside to seek Jesus. They have left homes and countries, loved ones and careers, in order to find Him, follow Him, or lead others to Him. How is it that one man can have such an effect on people, except He be God. Seeker of Christ, are you still desperate to know Him and make Him known?

“Not long after Jesus was born, magi, wise men or seers from the East, made their way from the East to Jerusalem. These wise men made inquiries. Where is this newborn, who is the King of the Jews? When we were far away in the East we saw His star, and we have followed its glisten and gleam all this way to worship Him.” (Matthew 2:1b-2; VOICE)

Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:

  • In the midst of this busy day just before Christmas, put everything aside and cry out to God for even more desperation to know Him. He is everything!
  • Read Matthew 1 and 2 today and write down the revelation you receive about Him. Jesus is being revealed to us in these passages of scripture.
  • Today, pray for every member of your family to know Him. Our nation will be saved one family member at a time.

A prayer you can pray:

Lord, I feel a renewed passion for You today. I want to know You in a new way. I want You to be first in my life! I want to have a fresh desperation to seek you in prayer and in the study of Your Word. It is there You are revealed to me. The more I know You, the more I can make You known to my family and friends. Make me bold in expressing to others who I know You to be. I must see Jesus more clearly and help other see You, as well! Amen.

Today’s decree:

I decree that many in this nation will see Jesus this Christmas season!

Dec 2017

Who Do You Say That He Is?

A King born in a manger. The King of Kings, in fact. With angelic fanfare before shepherds on lonely hillsides, he came into this world virtually incognito. We read the story of His birth annually, but how often do we really stop and think about it? Do we sit and ponder the total lack of hoopla, when we live in a world where being known is important? Do we daydream about the rejection He suffered, both at His birth and throughout His life, right up to the end? Do we understand at all why God chose to introduce Himself to us like this – as a suffering servant rejected of men. Can you relate to Him? If someone were to ask you who He is, what would you say?

“When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, ‘Who do people say the Son of Man is?’ They replied, ‘Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.’ ‘But what about you?’ he asked. ‘Who do you say I am?’” (Matthew 16:13-15; NIV)

Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:

  • What of Jesus’ humanity can you relate to? Don’t get religious. Stay real. Is it His joy, His rejection, His freedom, His persecution, His wisdom, His humility, or something else? Is it the fact that no one really understood Him? How about the fact that the Bible says He was really pretty ordinary in looks and occupation? Read His Word and find it.
  • Now, ask Him for a divine exchange this Christmas. He became human so we could have a relationship with Him while still clothed in our humanity. Ask Him to exchange His wisdom for your constant mistakes. Ask Him for humility in place of pride, or His contentment with not being the center of attention, unless the Father wanted Him there. Ask Him for rich blessings, freedom from sin and addiction, or for His love, acceptance, and sense of adoption. This is His Christmas gift to you. Let His Word speak to you.
  • “Simon Peter answered, ‘You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.’” Stop and think about why Peter answered this way. Was it the miracles He performed, His profound teaching, or pure revelation? When God asks you, “Who do you say that I am?” ask Him to reveal Himself to you in a new way.
  • Ask God to show You who He is revealing Himself to be to this nation right now. Intercede for America to see Him as He is.

A prayer you can pray:

Father, reveal Your Son to me in a new way. I can relate to Jesus’ humanity in that He was (See the examples above and fill in the blank.) I’m so glad You wrote about this in Your Word. He was like me, but He did not sin. Exchange (list an area you struggle in, such as pride or some area addiction, needing attention or feeling rejected) for wholeness, love and acceptance. I’ll sit here and let the revelation sink in. I want to be changed in Your Presence. I receive Your Christmas gift to me. Show me how You are revealing Yourself to this nation right now. Help us to realize this, Jesus! Help us to see You. Amen.

Today’s decree:

I decree that God is revealing Himself to America and our nation shall be changed!

Dec 2017

God Cares About Our Struggles

How’s the weather where you are? It looks like the forecast across the nation is calling for pretty freezing temperatures from now through Christmas and New Year’s. Travel will be challenging for so many as they try to trek “home” for the holidays. The failure of heaters in the homes of the poor and elderly could prove tragic. Extra room in makeshift shelters will need to be found for the homeless. What about medical emergencies these next few nights? Jesus cares about all these needs, just as He did on a night long ago when Jesus was born. Let’s get ahead of the storms in prayer and action.

“Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” (Philippians 2:4; ESV)

Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:

  • Pray for the safety of those who will be traveling for Christmas reunions over the next few days.
  • Intercede for the heating systems of the poor and elderly to hold up to the challenge of the incoming storms. Pray that neighbors stay connected to them.
  • Ask God to help cities and charities to get ready to house more of the homeless.
  • See if there is anything you can practically do to help keep people in your locale safe, cared for and feeling connected and loved in this Christmas season.

A prayer you can pray:

Father, keep the millions of travelers safe over the next week or so. Let there be an unprecedented lack of accidents or travel issues this year in America. Let families be able to be united and to celebrate Jesus’ birth together. May many come to see who Jesus is! Make sure that those who need help are able to obtain it. Help me to know what needs done to help care for the needs of the elderly, the poor and the homeless in my realm of influence. Thank you, Jesus. Amen.

Today’s decree:

I decree that America is a caring nation, because we are a Christian nation!

Dec 2017

Humanity Interrupted by God

I really enjoy Max Lucado’s Christmas books. In fact, my wife, Ceci, always encouraged me to read from them as Christmas drew close each year, when I had a church in Colorado Springs. We would hold a service we called a fireside chat, complete with a fireplace prop, and I would read some of Max’s Christmas stories. He has such a way with words. Here’s a quote I like a lot, “He came, not as a flash of light or as an unapproachable conqueror, but as one whose first cries were heard by a peasant girl and a sleepy carpenter. God tapped humanity on its collective shoulder, ‘Pardon me,’ He said, and eternity interrupted time, divinity interrupted carnality, and heaven interrupted in the form of a baby. Christianity was born in one big heavenly interruption.” (Max Lucado)1

“’Am I a God who is near,’ declares the LORD, ‘And not a God far off?’” (Jeremiah 23:23; NASB)

Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:

  • Take some time and rest in this busy season. Get out your Bible and read about Jesus’ birth. Take some time to notice some things about His coming as an infant.
  • Think about how He first came to you. Did He interrupt your life and set you on a new course.
  • Intercede for loved ones you have that need a little God-interruption in their lives.
  • Thank God that He is interrupting our national life. He is good at this. He’s been at it at long time – setting things back on course.

A prayer you can pray:

Lord, I’m pulling my Bible out today to read the Christmas story with new eyes. Since we read it year after year, I think I’ve gotten used to the way the story has been told, instead of the way you want me to “hear” it. You certainly interrupted my life when You came to me and saved me. Your tap on my shoulder was a shock and I have never been the same. Thank you. (Intercede for loved ones you have that need a little God-interruption in their lives.) Thank you for interrupting our nation’s course. You are course-correcting it, and, while it may be challenging, You know what You’re doing. I choose to trust You and to pray for those in the thick of the change. Amen.

Today’s decree:

I decree that God is interrupting our nation’s course and the end result will be good!

1 Lucado, Max, God Came Near: God’s Perfect Gift. Thomas Nelson, Nashville, Tennessee, 1986. Page 7.

Dec 2017

Laying Down Their Lives

Abraham Lincoln said, “Honor to the soldier and sailor everywhere, who bravely bears his country’s cause.”1 There are a special class of men and women who put their lives on the line for our freedom. As Christmas approaches, let us pray for our servicemen and women, especially for those deployed to the battle field.

“Greater love has no man than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15: 13; NASB)

Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:

  • Thank the Lord for the men and women who serve in our United States military.
  • Proclaim the protection of the Lord over them at home and abroad, especially over those in active war zones. Send a card of encouragement. *
  • Pray for the families of those who are deployed, that they will feel the loving care of the Lord over their lives.

A prayer you can pray:

Dear Lord, from the time of the Revolutionary War until now, I thank you for all of those who have given so much so that we can live free! I know that freedom is not free. Just like my salvation was bought with the blood of your Son, so is the freedom of this nation bought with the blood of its military. Please keep those on the battlefield safe from harm and let their families know that they can entrust You with their lives. Thank You, Jesus, Amen.

Today’s decree:

I decree that the Lord watches over the United States military at home and abroad to keep them safe, for they lay their loves down daily for our freedom.

*A great resource to help you encourage the military:

1 Abraham Lincoln. “Military Tributes, by Abraham Lincoln.” Abraham Lincoln Online. Source: Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, edited by Roy P. Basler et al, 2017. Web. December 18, 2017.

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