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Dan R. Crawford's Blog (125)

Praying Through Transitions

Transition is tough! I wonder how old does one need to be before life is not punctuated by transitions? I’m not sure. You’ll need to ask that question to someone older than me. I clearly remember transitioning from being at home all day, as a five-year old, to going off to school every morning. I did so with a prayer from and with my mother, the greatest prayer warrior I ever knew. She faithfully prayed every day, that I would do the best I could, with what I had, for Jesus’ sake, on that…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on October 27, 2018 at 1:18pm — No Comments

What God Can Do, and What We Can Do

To my surprise, the church announced their high-attendance Sunday goal and then prayed that God would help them to reach it. I was only their Interim Pastor, so was not in on the setting of the goal. When I asked how they arrived at the number, the answer was that it was ten more people than they had last year on high-attendance Sunday. Why do we ask God for things we know we can achieve in case He doesn’t? Were they afraid to ask God for fifty or a hundred more people? Afraid that the God…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on September 23, 2018 at 6:11pm — No Comments

The Need to be Taught to Pray

I’m about to try something I’ve not done before. For many years I occupied the Chair of Prayer at Southwestern Baptist Seminary and taught a very popular course on prayer each semester. I’ve also used those class notes to teach prayer on Sunday nights or Wednesday nights in churches where I served as Interim Pastor and furthermore, lead numerous prayer seminars in churches over the years. I’ve never used the notes to preach a series on prayer on Sunday mornings. Now I find myself serving as…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on August 27, 2018 at 6:10am — No Comments

Prayer Offered at the Memorial Service of a Long-time Friend

In the stillness of this time and place, we lift our hurting hearts to You, O God. Thank You for life, and specifically the life of the one we celebrate today, and for allowing these family members and friends to share life with them. Thank You for the assurance that we who are believers, will once again share life with them in Your eternal heaven (John 14:1-3). Thank You for the gift of memory which will allow a continuation of thoughts about them for the next days, weeks, years. Relieve…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on July 29, 2018 at 7:22pm — No Comments

Grieving for Those Who Grieve Amiss

In the past three months, I have grieved for two groups of people. First in April, when my brother Bob had unexpected multiple bypass surgery then his recovery then the past three weeks with his accidental fall, suffering blunt force trauma to the brain – then having brain surgery, and spending time in the Palliative Care Unit dying – and then having his memorial service, I have observed two groups of folks who differed from Bob’s family and friends, in the way they grieved. One group seemed…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on June 30, 2018 at 12:15pm — No Comments

How to Pray, and How Not to Pray Following a Tragedy

It happened again last week – another mass shooting, this time at the Santa Fe High School in southeast Texas. Previously, this High School was perhaps best known for its role in the fight against school prayer in the 1990s. In 2000, the Supreme Court struck down the school’s long-standing tradition of prayer before football games, ruling that prayer over the stadium’s public-address system violated the separation of church and state. Ironically, last Friday, a member of the school’s…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on May 21, 2018 at 8:26am — No Comments

Prayer Opens Heaven

What is the result of prayer? Does it make the pray-er feel better? Yes, but it does more than that. Does it fulfill biblical instructions? Yes, but it does more than that. Does it follow the model of Jesus? Yes, but it does more than that. Prayer opens heaven. Jesus lived with an open heaven. At His baptism, “When all the people were baptized, it came to pass that Jesus also was baptized; and while He prayed, the heaven was opened” (Luke 3:21). In the midst of His ministry, Jesus…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on May 6, 2018 at 5:28pm — 1 Comment

Internet Praying

In recent years I have posted serious prayer requests on social media – twice for my wife’s surgeries, related to her fractured pelvis, and hip replacement, and once for my brother’s multiple bypass surgery. Friends replied in large numbers, many with encouraging, and supportive comments. Some however, simply responded with the word, ‘praying.” Perhaps I’m the only one who feels a bit empty when these one-word replies appear. If so, attribute it to twenty plus years of trying to teach…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on April 22, 2018 at 6:26pm — No Comments

Praying Evil or Being Kind?

I once had a person who disliked me very much and tried to discredit my every action. In fact, at times, they were quite proactive in their attacks on my family and on me. How should I have prayed for such a person? The human side of me wanted to pray evil on them, to ask God to just remove them from my life. In fact, David, in his psalms of judgement, often called “the imprecatory psalms,” repeatedly asked God to punish his enemies. As an example, David once prayed to God about, “those who…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on March 25, 2018 at 4:51pm — No Comments

Thoughts and Prayers and More

“Sending thoughts and prayers your way.”

How many times did we hear some politician or dignitary say these very words in the days following the recent school shooting in Florida (or any previous mass shooting). I suppose it is an attempt to comfort those who are hurting. In fact, one politician said in a T.V. interview, “I have sent my prayers to comfort them.” Since prayer is to be addressed to God, not to persons, I have my doubts about how much these folks know about prayer, and…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on February 25, 2018 at 7:30pm — No Comments

Praying for Planters

I first met Jim Essian when he played 3rd base for the Fort Worth Cats minor league baseball team and I worked with the team Chaplain. I next met him years later as he was starting a church in downtown Fort Worth. Many church plants don’t make it seven years, but many are not started by guys who hustle on every play, don’t mind getting their uniform dirty, and play every game to win. In seven years, Jim’s church plant has baptized over 200 people, planted another church down the road,…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on January 21, 2018 at 7:21pm — No Comments

A Lost Christmas Word

Here’s a Christmas word for you. The oft-read “Christmas Story” from Luke 2, contains a wonderful word, largely a lost word in our vocabulary – “ponder – “to consider something deeply and thoroughly; to meditate; to weigh carefully in the mind; to consider thoughtfully.” “Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart” (Luke 2:19). One of God’s greatest gifts is the gift of memory. In fact, much of our Christmas observance is spent remembering, pondering. And pondering has a…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on December 25, 2017 at 9:33am — No Comments

Prayer and More

Prayer and More

Every time there is a mass shooting in a church, someone asks me if it causes me to re-live the emotions of September 15, 1999 at Wedgwood Baptist Church in Fort Worth – my home church – where a lone gunman entered a “See You at the Pole” Rally with two guns, two hundred rounds of ammunition, and a home-made pipe bomb. Before he took his own life, he killed seven people, wounded seven others, and traumatized…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on November 12, 2017 at 6:00pm — No Comments

A Pastor Appreciation Prayer

October is Pastor Appreciation Month.  As we…
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Added by Dan R. Crawford on October 22, 2017 at 5:56pm — No Comments

Pray for Las Vegas and More

We sat in the airport awaiting our flight and watched as people boarded the flight at the adjacent gate - Allegiant Airlines flight 417, non-stop to Las Vegas. They were mostly happy people, headed for a holiday weekend or a vacation. Many no doubt planning to visit a few casinos, perhaps take in a few shows. We laughed at some as they gathered all their belongings and tried to carry on more than was allowed. We grieved with one who arrived five minutes after the door was shut. A little more…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on October 4, 2017 at 12:52pm — No Comments

A Prayer Meeting Surrender

Fifty years ago, this month I began a six-year tenure serving as the Baptist Student Minister and Bible Instructor at Pan American University. Next week I am speaking five times in three days to students at the same University (now called The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley).  In preparation for these presentations, I journeyed back in time.  One clear memory was the day I ran out of Seminary momentum.  This was my first ministry assignment…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on September 22, 2017 at 7:24pm — No Comments

United Prayer of the Nations

Last week I participated in the North American Prayer Summit in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada (the oldest and most easterly city in North America). Prayer leaders from North American countries, especially Canada, U.S. and Mexico met for four days to share reports and pray for their continent. It made me wonder about the possibility of believers from North and South Korea joining in prayer for their peninsula. It may well be logistically impossible but with today’s technology, surely…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on August 28, 2017 at 8:15am — No Comments

When God Says No

When we get that for which we pray, we say God answered our prayer.  When we fail to get that for which we pray, we say, God didn’t answer our prayer.  Is it possible that God answered your prayer by saying, “no?”  When some would-be followers of Jesus requested to first bury their father, the answer was, “no” (Luke 9:57-62).  When a mother requested of Jesus to let her sons sit in places of prominence in the kingdom, the answer was “no” (Matthew 20:20-23).  When Jesus asked the Father to…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on July 30, 2017 at 6:19pm — 1 Comment

Pray on the Armor or Refrain from Removing It?

I have a question for those who speak of “praying on the armor every morning.”  Why did you take it off the night before?  I know.  You say you can’t sleep with all that armor on.  The Roman soldiers did, especially when they thought the enemy was near.  The analogy to spiritual warfare and the “armor of God” is in Ephesians 6:10-20, and it is a reference to the Roman soldiers being ready to protect themselves from the enemy.  In all probability Paul was in prison when he wrote Ephesians,…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on June 18, 2017 at 3:47pm — No Comments

Prayer Sent Where?

I saw it again last week. Someone posted on social media, “We are in need of prayers sent our way.” I’ve written about this before, but it keeps reoccurring, apparently from folks who understand their need for prayer, but don’t understand prayer. The Bible is clear that all prayer is to be offered to the Father, to and in the name of the Son, in, with, and through the Holy Spirit. Consider the following scripture passages: “When you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door,…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on May 30, 2017 at 10:15am — 1 Comment

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