Showing posts from September, 2016

Thanks for Chocolate

Dear God, the Omniscient One-- Thank you! You were wise enough and imaginative enough to create chocolate. Or, at least, you created the cocoa bean, and You inspired some Latino to invent chocolate. It doesn't matter. Chocolate was perhaps the greatest invention of all time. Thank you for its rich flavor and bitter-sweetness. Thank you for its energizing and comforting qualities. Thank you for its versatility: no matter what you bake, it will taste better with chocolate. How remarkable that one square of dark chocolate or one sip of hot, foamy milk chocolate can reach down into the sad and tired places of my soul and stir up warmth and vitality! You must want me to eat and drink it because one bite or one sip is never enough. I must have more. Perhaps this is a cautionary tale--a shot across the bow--a warning against a food addiction. Whatever. I just know that I love chocolate. And for that reason, and many other more important reasons, I love You. (And now,

Praying the "Turnaround Prayer"

Today has been especially hard for me, for no particular reason except that I'm grieving, and today I'm grumpy and unsettled about it. I am not a perky Christian right now. I feel dried up. Parched like a wind-swept desert, I am unable to quench the emptiness of my heart. My faith is strong enough not to rage at God or question His sovereignty; I'm just unhappy, lost even. How selfish that sounds!  After a sad, scrolling-through of social media posts, I ran across my friend Bob Hostetler 's blog on Guideposts , dated yesterday, Sept. 20, 2016. I appreciate his perspective on praying through hard times. Here is an excerpt from his blog  "Pray for Blessings from Disappointments" -- "Most of us, when misfortune occurs, pray for relief or deliverance. That is natural, and it’s a good way to pray.  After all, the psalmist David prayed, “Please, God, rescue me! Come quickly, Lord, and help me” (Psalm 70:1, NLT). And “Please, Lord, rescue me! Com

Prayers from a stacked pot

O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer-- I feel like a stacked pot, waiting among so many others for something new and miraculous to overpower my life. I forget what miracles You've already done on my behalf. Now I'm asking for Your transforming power to erase pain, redeem mistakes, and use my years of working and waiting. Somehow, take my ordinary life and transform it into a glorious piece of Your master plan. Make me patient as I sit and wait. Build my faith as I trust You. Help me see past the pressures of this life that weigh on me and threaten to stifle my calling. I feel so ordinary, so confined in my purpose, like a clay pot stacked among so many others. I forget that You made me for eternity. I should not pine for it or waste my time here, but I need to work like what I do here matters. Because it does matter. I must participate and fulfill whatever task you have placed in front of me. You will redeem even the mundane. Even the mistakes, as long as I

Prayer for my sponsored child

Dear Lord, You provide and equip us for the journeys we take. Please provide a covering from evil and protection from violence for my sponsored child. Keep the enemy away from his family and his future. Give him hope, courage, and resilience to live in his present situation. Help him to know You and love You. I pray for his salvation and surrender to Your will. I pray for spiritual influences in his life that give him a picture of You and Your love. Give him a hope and a future of Your designing. May he always walk in Your ways. I thank you for the privilege of speaking into his life and loving him. Your grace is unfathomable. Thank you for loving me enough to involve me in Your important work. Make me faithful to Your calling. I love you! And I love this child. May he grow up in the confidence of both. Amen.