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When you just gotta push through.

Friends, it has been a long day of travel, and start of meetings in Indianapolis . . . but I feel compelled to get this briefing out. It is different than my usual writing, but I know it is meant for breakthrough for someone. 'Not feeling it? Okay, see you back here in a couple days I hope.

We all have challenging, rough times…

no matter what those are - we've gotta find

a way to push through. The key: determination, fortitude and self-discipline.

And prayer is key.

Several weeks back, I mentioned I would be teaching through a great book, Pray First,1 because being a consistent, creative, engaged person of prayer is vitally important. The Biblically-inspired writing has been great for all who have been reading and participating in discussions. That is, until . . .

Well, this week we hit a chapter I was tempted to have readers skip called the “Prayer of Moses” or the "Tabernacle Prayer". I simply could not grab ahold of it! What kept me in the game was that the author said it is probably the model of prayer he uses most often, and because I value his thinking, I decided to keep pushing until I gained understanding. Because sometimes what we need to 'push through' is gaining mastery of something or seeking to fully understand. And with prayer, remember, we are not required to pray specific words in a specific order--but, I have found that having different formats or models of prayer that I employ keeps my prayers fresh and interesting and most importantly, effective.

Here is what I learned, and why it is so valuable: The Tabernacle Prayer links Old and New Testament learning, giving us a refresher about God's instruction to the Israelites to build a place of worship while in the wilderness. In Exodus 26 and 27, God gives very specific instructions with measurements and what exactly was to be included. Take a look at the picture - imagine that you were to enter through the 'gate' at the front (far right) and advance your way to the Holy of Holies and the very presence of God.

I hope you might consider giving this a chance; it took some work to grasp the notion of this tabernacle prayer--but I truly do like the way it leads into the presence of God.

Simplistically, the prayer looks symbolically like moving through the gates, into

->the Outer court, where we offer God our thanks and praise, past the

->brazen altar, thank God for the Cross and all it means, to the

->laver, looking into a bowl of water where we can see our sins and confess them, into the first part of the tent, where there is the

->candlestick, representing the fire of the Holy Spirit, asking him to move in us

->table of showbread, the bread/praying the promises in God's Word

->incense, offering worship by using God's name: Redeemer, Savior, Shepherd

->Mercy seat, we approach God asking for the needs of others and ourselves, separated in the tabernacle from the

->Ark of the covenant: presence of God

Below, you can see the explanation beside each place or item in the tabernacle.

There is an app: Pray First that is loaded with valuable tools to aid in prayer, from scripture to teaching to music. (and I'm not really an 'app' person; I'm a paper and pen girl)

PRAY FIRST - sometimes you just gotta push through!


p.s. In Indianapolis for Colson Fellows Int'l Conference where I'll be commissioned on Sunday morning.

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