Heart Keepers Ministries

The Place Of Prayer

by Debbie on November 3, 2022

Have you intended to pray but things got in the way and before you knew it your days got worse before they got better.

Paul and Silas had some days like that.

Their story is supernatural but nonetheless real!

Acts 16:16-40

Once when we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a female slave who had a spirit by which she predicted the future. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling. She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” She kept this up for many days. Finally Paul became so annoyed that he turned around and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her.

When her owners realized that their hope of making money was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to face the authorities.

They brought them before the magistrates and said, “These men are Jews, and are throwing our city into an uproar by advocating customs unlawful for us Romans to accept or practice.”

The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten with rods.

After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully. When he received these orders, he put them in the inner cell and fastened their feet in the stocks.

About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose. The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”

The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”

They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved-you and your household.” Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house. At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his household were baptized. The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God—he and his whole household.

When it was daylight, the magistrates sent their officers to the jailer with the order: “Release those men.” The jailer told Paul, “The magistrates have ordered that you and Silas be released. Now you can leave. Go in peace.”

But Paul said to the officers: “They beat us publicly without a trial, even though we are Roman citizens, and threw us into prison. And now do they want to get rid of us quietly? No! Let them come themselves and escort us out.”

The officers reported this to the magistrates, and when they heard that Paul and Silas were Roman citizens, they were alarmed. They came to appease them and escorted them from the prison, requesting them to leave the city. After Paul and Silas came out of the prison, they went to Lydia’s house, where they met with the brothers and sisters and encouraged them. Then they left.
They dealt with an evil spirit in a woman by casting it out in Jesus name.

They then had to deal with the greedy, angry owners of this woman.

They were seized and dragged to the marketplace and placed before the authorities by these greedy, angry people.
(In other words these people called the law on them.)

Then others joined in against them and they were stripped and severely beaten with rods per the law.

Next they were sent to prison and guarded closely by a jailer who put their feet in stocks.

Apparently they couldn’t sleep because after midnight Paul and Silas started praying and singing hymns and had the attention of all the prisoners.

Okay finally we get to the best part, the supernatural part:

A violent earthquake shook the foundations of the prison and the doors flew open and everyone’s chains came loose.

But Paul and Silas didn’t run for their lives. Instead they stayed and saved the jailer from taking his life and then they told the jailer how to be saved for eternity. The jailer and his whole household were saved and baptized by Paul and Silas.

The jailer did something for Paul and Silas before he and his household were saved though, he washed their wounds.

Can you imagine Paul and Silas sitting in prison with severe wounds praying and praising God?

I don’t know about you but I might be complaining and whining and crying my eyes out, instead.

The jailer, after washing their wounds was immediately baptized along with his family and then he set a meal before Paul and Silas.

They found out they were free to go in peace as per the law and they refused the offer.

They instead wanted as big of a public exit as they had a public entrance into prison.

The authorities appeased them and lead them out of prison and they went to Lydia’s house and encouraged those who were there.

What a story! Everything from evil spirits to being placed in prison tried to stop Paul and Silas from getting to their place of prayer but in the end it was prayer and praise to God that got them a miracle.

The most important thing we can do is get to our place of prayer.

What is stopping you from getting to your place of prayer?

Deal with whatever it is quickly because when we pray and praise God miracles happen!

Father in Jesus name I cast out anything keeping me from getting to my place of prayer. I know that when I pray and praise you will make miracles happen in my life that will get me to a place of freedom so I can lead others to you and encourage those who are downcast. Thank you in advance for all you do when I let nothing get in the way of praying and praising you! In Jesus name amen



by Debbie on March 30, 2021

Here’s an interesting observation:

Letters make words! Words make letters!

Letter has two definitions:

a character representing one or more of the sounds used in speech; any of the symbols of an alphabet.

a written, typed, or printed communication, especially one sent in an envelope by mail or messenger.

I have been doing some organizing at my home in an upper room in my husband’s shop.

While organizing, I came across a plastic container with some letters.

These were hand written letters.

Three of the letters fell out of the container and I grabbed them up to read later.

When the day came that I read these letters, I was not prepared for how they made me feel.

They made me feel really nauseated, deep in the pit of my stomach.

These letters were love letters. One from my big brother and two from my sweet mama.

Why did they make me feel so sick? I wasn’t even sure, yet!

Here is an excerpt from the letter my big brother left for me on his kitchen counter dated 10-8-1983.

We rejoice with you in the success you’ve had in getting a new job. I trust you will give God credit as HE guides you to greater heights. You’ve only just begun! ...
Your uncle ( my mama’s brother) called and wants you to go to church with him sometime...
Be good; do what you do, do well; and be sweet, crisp, clean, and modest. You can do all things through Christ which strengthens you. (Phil. 4:13)...In His Steps, Don

Don was my half brother. We have the same Dad but different mothers. He was a pastor at a Baptist church in Lynn Haven, FL at the time he wrote this letter.

I was living in the small town of Graceville, FL and wanted a change, so I contacted him and asked if I could stay with him and his family until I could find a job and a place of my own.

He welcomed me to stay, with these two conditions:

I must attend church and tithe.

I moved in with him and his family and went to church and tithed, but with little passion.

The other two letters that I read were mailed to me from my mama.

One was dated 2-3-1986. Here are a couple of touching lines from it:

My Darling girl,

...So you and Jane (my roommate) take real good care of yourselves and I’ll be praying for you both...take care now. I’m so proud of your grades (I was attending college part time)...Love, Mom and Dad

The second letter mailed to me from my mama was dated 9-18-1986. Here are some touching words from it:

Darling Girl,
I hope this finds you feeling even better than yesterday, do hope things work out for the best for you. Try real hard to remember that anger doesn’t help anything, I know sometimes it’s hard but you will see it works better the kind way...Honey, just try to take things one day at a time. Just turn your problems over to the Lord, for remember, we could do nothing without him, but if we don’t ask him and trust in him he can’t help us...Much, much love Mom & Dad & All

Slowly I realized that I was grieving about times in my life when I didn’t really know the Lord or for that matter, want to know him. I was saddened by the time that I missed.

Yes, I went to church and tithed but only because it was required of me.

As soon as I found a townhouse I could afford near the beach, I left my brother’s home and his church and never returned to church again until October of 1996.

I realized I waisted over 10 yrs of my life living in the world and not in God’s Word. Yes, it greatly grieved me and I asked for his forgiveness. I realized God had given me a godly brother, a godly uncle, and a godly mother who tried so hard to direct me with words and letters to put God first in my life.

How in the world I just ignored their love and kinds words, I’ll never truly understand.

This morning I started reading in a new Bible called The Passion Translation and for some reason I started reading in Revelation.

I came across the letters Jesus lovingly wrote to the seven churches.

Christ’s letter to Laodicea seemed to help me better understand why I felt so sick about the years I waisted in the world instead of his word.

Here are a few excerpts from that letter:

Revelation 3:15-17, 19, 22

I know all that you do, and I know that you are neither frozen in apathy nor fervent with passion. How I wish you were either one or the other!

But because you are neither cold nor hot, but lukewarm, I am about to spit you from my mouth.

For you claim, “I’m rich and getting richer-I don’t need a thing.” Yet you are clueless that you’re miserable, poor, blind, barren, and naked!

...All those I dearly love I unmask and train. So repent and be eager to pursue what is right...The one whose heart is open let him listen carefully to what the Spirit is saying now...

I wish that my heart had been open to the words the Spirit was speaking to me through my brother and my uncle’s many invites to church and my mothers encouraging words, but as Jesus stated, I was clueless.

I didn’t understand the reason my life was so miserable is because Jesus was standing at the door knocking and I wasn’t interested in dining with him at all.

That is why I felt so sick. Because I know now the lukewarm state I was living in made Jesus sick too.

I am very thankful I am fervent with passion now but very sorry I waisted all those years just bring lukewarm.

I have repented and I am eager to pursue what is right and I now find myself writing letters to others in hopes they will have ears to hear what the Spirit is speaking to them, through me.

Here’s a challenge for you:

Read Christ’s letters to the seven churches and ask for an open heart and ears to hear what the Spirit is saying.

Repent if you find yourself identified in any of these letters and be eager to pursue what is right.

Think of at least one person you could write a love letter to that might need to hear godly words of encouragement. Be sure to pray for them and believe one day they will have open hearts to what the Spirit is speaking through you.

Darling Jesus,
I am thankful I can write this letter to you today. I am thankful I finally heard you knocking and listened to you and repented and began to eagerly pursue what is right.
Thank you for never giving up on me. I pray for those who may be deaf to your knocking. I know they are clueless and miserable. So I ask fervently that their ears would be open to hear your knocking at the door of their heart.
I pray they too would repent and be eager to pursue what is right. Thank you Jesus.
Much, much love Debbie.


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