Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Practicing the Presence - My Story shared at Trinity Family Church

It was an honor to speak last Sunday at Trinity Family Church and share a Word on practicing the presence of God, seeking Jesus, and desiring to walk like Enoch. I pray it blesses you.

If you would like to come share the Word at your church, small group, or any gathering, I love to teach the Word of God. Contact me at 972-922-0022 or - Bunni

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Practice the Presence: How a simple man from the 17th century can help us simplify our lives today

By Bunni Pounds

The longer I walk with God the simpler my walk gets. I am convinced that we over complicate our relationship with God. 

For younger believers, I have always broken down devotion to God into three areas so they can remember them- worship, prayer, and the Word of God. Yet even those three can flow in and out of each other and comes down to a simple posture of turning our eyes to Jesus. A healthy vibrant spiritual life really in simplicity to being with God and making Jesus our number one thought every day - turning our affections toward Him through our often weak and half-hearted prayers.

In our crazy busy culture that we live in, this can seem so hard, but it is because our souls are so cluttered. Just as we de-clutter our houses or our closets, the Holy Spirit, our teacher, wants to take us on a journey of de-cluttering our souls.

If you are a born again believer who has accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior, then your spirit is reborn and is in the constant presence of God; but so often we don’t tap into our spirits, our internal lives, because of all the noise going on in our souls- our mind, will, and emotions.

Our spirits are yearning for communion with God and Jesus died for us to be with Him and know Him, but what is the answer for us today? How do we do that?

I believe the answer lies in the PRACTICING of the presence of God in simple moments in the car, washing dishes, changing diapers, taking a break from our computers, throughout our day taking a moment to remember we are walking in His presence.

I work in politics where our souls are always getting attacked with pride, anger, and fear. If we, as Christians in this field, don’t deal with our souls, we will turn into horrible, prideful, angry, and controlling people. It is not pleasant. In whatever field you are in, I am sure you can list out the enemies of your soul.

I recently ran for Congress and found joy and peace in the midst of the hardest six months of my life. My testimony at the end of it all was that God is so faithful to our hearts in the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. He was faithful to protect my soul as I daily and minute by minute turned my heart toward Him.

Last week, I picked up a book from my shelf in my office that has always inspired me - but even more so this week than ever before - The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence. I have consumed this book again this week because I believe this is really the fight for all of us in the Body of Christ in our generation.

Will we steal away with God in our hearts during the most turbulent moments of our lives?

Will we cut through all the voices and the noise and seek God in the stillness of our hearts?

Will we fulfill the desire and prayer of Jesus in John 17:24 that we would be “with Him where He is”?

Will we really admit that He is our ultimate source and if we don’t have His presence with us, we can’t do anything?

Now is the time to connect with God like never before and we will have to be intentional and militant to see it happen in our lives.

Brother Lawrence (1614-1691) was a just a lay brother who served at the Carmelite monastery in the 17th century. He washed dishes and later in life repaired sandals. He sought God in the midst of his simple work and became known for his great peace, his contentment in life, and his words of wisdom concerning how to access the presence of God every day at any moment.

I think we here in our modern culture have something to learn from Brother Lawrence. I have been convicted and provoked by this simple man’s wholehearted love for God again.

Every day I will be posting on my FacebookTwitter, and Instagram pages a quote from Brother Lawrence and then I will give you some practical instruction or a story from my own life on how I #PracticeThePresence.

He said such profound things as “Believe me, count as lost each day you have not used in loving God.”

Or “Let what may come of it, however many be the days remaining to me, I will do all things for the LOVE of God”

He didn’t need to retreat to find God because he found Him every day in the noise of His kitchen doing hundreds of dishes. He would turn his thoughts toward the Living God and commune with Him in prayer and meditation of the Word of God.

As I have said many times, being in the presence of Jesus is what we are going to be doing for all eternity- we might as well practice it now.

The four living creatures and the elders in the book of Revelation never get tired of saying “Holy, Holy, Holy” because they see again and again and again another aspect of His beauty. They cannot stop because they have seen Him- the beautiful Son of God.

Will you go on a journey with me for as many days as we want to - discovering the words of this simple monk who learned the art of practicing the Presence of God?

We are going to #PracticeThePresence. I have much to learn. 

After thirty-one years of walking with God, I believe this is the essence of the Christian life and the place where true joy and peace is found. If we don’t have JESUS, we don’t have anything. I am by NO means perfect and I am more hungry for God now than every before. 

Let’s #PracticeThePresence together and discover more about the beauty of Jesus than we ever imagined.

INSTRUCTIONS on how to see every post on social media. Don't miss one!

On Facebook, you can click on my profile and go to the “Following” button and click “See it First” and it will jump to the top of your newsfeed everyday.

On Twitter, you can follow me, then click on the BELL on the lefthand side of the Follow button and click on it to get account notifications on “all tweets”.

On Instagram, you can follow me then click for notifications of posts or add me to your close friends list so you see the posts everyday.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

A Time to Weep

By Bunni Pounds

I was a puddle of tears on the floor about a month ago. Finally feeling, finally letting go of the walls, and finally letting the tears flow down my cheeks.

Weeping over the great tragedy of abortion in our generation. Weeping over the 881,000 babies killed in the womb in America just in 2017 and the millions upon millions killed over the last decade. Weeping over the seduction of this age that speaks in the ears of women and men to pursue the ending of a pregnancy - a LIFE.

You might think I am over reacting. You might say, “Bunni, there are so many important issues out there.” But really- there is not.

Our silence is killing us. Our complacency and unfeeling hearts are killing our national conscience.

We have a gnawing knot in our stomach when we read a story on abortion, when we see another statistic, and when we read about the new laws passed in New York or Illinois. We think to ourselves  - we should be bothered. The pink lights on the top of the World Trade Center celebrating the new law passed in NY that gives access to abortion through the 3rd trimester- should bother us.

This tragedy of life lost in the womb in our nation should make us weep, but we can’t  - because our hearts are so numb to it all. It is just another story line, news crisis, or issue that demands our attention where we feel helpless and powerless to do anything about it.

Over this last month - this thought kept pounding through my heart - IT IS A TIME TO WEEP.

“A time to weep, And a time to laugh; A time to mourn, and a time to dance.” Ecclesiastes 3:4

I have studied this subject for so many years. I wrote papers about it in high school and later in college. I have spoken many many times about the #1 issue that drove me to get involved in politics in the first place. The issue was the protection of human life from conception to natural death - but here I sat and I couldn’t shed a tear over the horrible cavern of death that we are continuing to fall down into as a nation.

Then I cried out in prayer, “God, give me Your heart. Break through my hardened heart and let me see this issue as You see it. I can’t go on just seeing these babies’ murders with my intellectual mind. Let me really see the hearts of the wounded women who have been scarred deeply by their decision to end a pregnancy. Let me see the hearts of the men who paid for abortions and still carry that burden back in the depth of their consciousness. Let me see the wounds that you want to heal in this nation. Let me see the ravaging of our nation by the sin of abortion. Let me see Your heart to heal individual hearts, to save this nation from judgement, and to see the precious babies’ souls that are with You."

Then I wept. And wept. And wept. The walls finally feel down around my heart and I could see.

It is a time to weep. It is time for us to feel again the stain of abortion on the moral fabric of our nation.

Let’s pray this prayer together and ask God for tears, for a heart that feels, and a cry that will change our lives and the future of our nation.

Jesus, I plead Your Blood over my sins and the sins of my nation. God, end abortion and send revival to America.

Here is my written prayer on 1/24/19. Please pray it with me.

Oh that we would fear the Lord
That we would see You truly as You are
High and lifted up

Forgive the people of New York
But us as well
That we don’t stand up and protect human life
At EVERY stage of growth in the womb
That we don’t esteem the creation of God
The God breathed soul
As something to be valued and cherished
Forgive us for destroying
our future generations
by murdering the unborn

God, raise us up as warriors to step up
For the unborn at EVERY stage of development and with every weakness

And that we would be mothers and fathers
of a generation who are born
who need a moral compass,
A hand up of compassion
Relief from terror, oppression, and injustice

Let us be a people who values LIFE
in our beautiful nation in the years to come
Let us serve the Lord with fear
And rejoice with trembling
Putting our trust firmly in You
Jesus, You are the Son of God

And our only HOPE. 

After you pray and feel again, find some way to plug into the answer of your prayers. 

This weekend there is a day of mourning being called in New York. Check it out!

Plug into a pro-life activism group, support the crisis pregnancy center near you, talk to young people about this issue, and keep crying out for new manna to keep in the fight for LIFE. We will not stop. 

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Love In Them - Devotional #7 (John 17:25-26)

By Bunni Pounds

"O righteous Father! The world has not known You, but I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me.  And I have declared to them Your name, and will declare it, that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.” John 17:25-26 

As believers in Jesus we have experienced and tasted something that the world doesn't understand. We have experienced the love of God. 

Here, Jesus was praying to the Father before He went to the cross, acknowledging that He knew the Father, and that He had revealed Him to His disciples to the point where they could say that they too knew the Father. Then He prayed for one more thing: "that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them."

Here is God (in the form of Jesus), speaking to God (the Father), by God (the Holy Spirit), concerning the love of God being given to us. Powerful!

He wants us to know the love that is in the heart of the Trinity for one another. Imagine how strong the love of the Father is for the Son. Imagine the love of the Son of God for the Father. God wants us to have that kind of love. He wants us to know it deep in our souls. 

The beauty of this is that Jesus was actually praying for the Holy Spirit to come to the people of God, and to shed that love abroad in our hearts

"And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever…the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.  I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you." John 14:16-18

The Holy Spirit is so critical to have in our lives because it is through Him that we have communion with the Godhead. He is our Helper. He is the one who communicates the love of God to us. When we are born again, the Holy Spirit regenerates our spirit. However, there is also an empowerment—a "coming upon" of the Holy Spirit—like on the day of Pentecost in Acts 2. It is this baptism that enables us to pray by the Spirit and commune with the Spirit.

The Holy Spirit wants to have a relationship with us and make that LOVE really clear in our hearts. He wants to reveal the love of the Father to us and release a dynamic love in our hearts for the Son of God. He wants to create a “love fest” on the inside of us with explosions of the love of God.

In this day and hour, we must engage with the Holy Spirit – talking to Him, praying with Him, and seeking His comfort and guidance. We need to pull from the treasure chest on the inside of us and the fire within to live out the call of God for our lives. This does not happen by accident – we must be intentional - engaging with Holy Spirit.

The love of God is deep. It is beyond words or understanding. Only the Spirit of God can show us the depths of the love of God for us and the world around us. Communing with the Holy Spirit is essential to the revelation of the love of God in our lives. 

God is after voluntary lovers. He won't force us into anything. Knowing Jesus and walking in, and with, the Holy Spirit is life eternal.

It is what we will be doing for all eternity. What is keeping us from starting on that journey now?

Download the full 7 day devotional book in pdf form here to print off and study.