Thursday, May 2 nd , 2024
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Useless... Unless the Lord...


Unless the LORD builds the house, They labor in vain who build it; Unless the LORD guards the city, The watchman keeps awake in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, To retire late, To eat the bread of painful labors; For He gives to His beloved even in his sleep. Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one's youth. How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them; They will not be ashamed When they speak with their enemies in the gate. Psalm 127 NAS



As we step into February our monthly prayer focus turns to prayer for the Family sphere of influence. We seek God for His tenderness, wisdom, and compassion as we pray through this month that can be filled with more situations and emotions than we could ever imagine or address… but God!

God does not miss a moment of your life. God has seen every joy-filled and every brokenhearted tear that you have shed. God knows the desires of your heart; your wounds and wants, every treasured memory and biggest dreams. God knows everything about you because He created you, loves you, has made extraordinary plans for you, never leaves you, is always for you, gave His Son for you, and is continually working out His Kingdom good and goodness in your life. Why? Because you belong first and foremost to Him.

You are His creation, fearfully and wonderfully made and He doesn’t miss a moment of your life. People may come and go, disappoint, drain, abandon, or take advantage of you – but God will never leave you or forsake you because He loves you as your Heavenly Father from whom every family derives its name. People do not complete us, God does. He who began a good work in you will see it to completion, to perfection in heaven, all while lovingly leading us through every moment on earth.

If you have been longing and praying for a spouse, walk in faith and continue to be the godly person that will one day be the answer to your future spouse’s prayers. You are worth the wait and so are they. Never step outside God’s will to fill a need with a counterfeit or convenient momentary substitute that could leave you spiritually and emotionally damaged.

If a beloved member of your family has transitioned to heaven, treasure their memory as you grieve and take strength and joy in their glory in heaven. In Christ, we are forever family, look to Jesus for compassion, comfort, and companionship before and beyond anything or anyone else on earth. Enjoy the company of family and friends on earth, do not isolate yourself in grief, but know that your God-designed purpose still abounds, your race is not finished, and God will lead and love you as you walk in His will and ways.

If you have a prodigal child or parent in your family, God knows exactly where they are, and He is always working to draw them back to Him and to you. Keep praying. If you have been abandoned, know that God is always with you, you are never alone. If you have gone through a divorce, a breakup, or are losing hope in ever getting married, embrace God’s love and family, find a church community, immerse your thoughts, emotions, and actions in the Word of God and His wonderful purpose and plans for you, and live daily in His abundance and not with a spirit of lack or disappointment. Trust your Heavenly Father that in all times, in all things, in all your dreams, desires, and disappointments He is for you, with you, and loves you with a greater, truer, purer, never-ending love than you could ever imagine.

How We Can Pray

When we stand before the Lord to give an account for all God has given to us, we cannot blame our parents, politicians, pastors, or our problems because the Lord was loving us and laboring in us all along. It is up to each of us to choose to invite Jesus to forgive and live in us. As a “Holy Household” we have a personal relationship with Him that overcomes darkness, sets us apart, and sets us up for spiritual success.

The most obvious point of this Psalm tells us that unless the Lord builds the household; unless He is Lord over it, in it, and through it we can pay, paint, participate in all sorts of sports and clubs and fill our schedules with activities, education, vacation and more, but all will prove useless without God. God is clear that an 80-hour workweek provides labor that is in vain and brings pain, not gain. What shall it profit a person, if he gains the whole world, and lose his own soul… and I would add, loses their family?

The greatest Valentine gift you could ever give your family is to become an “Abiding” member of your family; leading them to the Lord and joining Him as His love and light builds and fills your household.

Would you please pray with me now?

Lord Jesus, You are our Heavenly Father, and You never leave us or forsake us. Thank You for blessing each of us with Your purpose, and through Christ, grafting us into Your family. Teach us how to dwell with You as we would dwell with family in a house – ever-present, always speaking and learning and growing. Heal hearts that have been wounded by the choices of earthly parents and parental figures and renew our minds to fulfill Your mission for us, to become spiritually significant tools in Your hand to grow your Kingdom. Show us how to be abiding members of our family, always pointing them toward You and filling our homes and gatherings with the light of Christ. In Jesus name, amen.

Serving Him with gladness,


Kathy Branzell