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Showing posts from 2020

Memorial Day prayer of thanksgiving & protection

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Lord of heaven and earth,

We love you.  Thank you for your unparalleled grace on us as a nation  by giving us the freedom to pursue you and your calling to serve and worship you.  We enjoy the blessings of abundance and opportunity  because servicemen and women and their families  have sacrificed comfort, protection and their lives to provide us with freedom.  Lord, pour out your comfort and blessing on our armed forces and their families.  Stave off the loneliness.  Protect them from dangers, within and without.  Fill them with your mission and purpose.  May the Holy Spirit fill our bases, our ships, and our aircraft.  Bring revival and comfort to these who give and suffer loss.  Thank you for your provision for us who enjoy America.  May we take advantage of all that you have supplied for us.
In Jesus' name, Amen.
Check out these blogs and prayers for Memorial Day: What I'm thinking about on Memorial Day How to pray when you're overwhelmed with sadness A Memorial Day prayer

Prayer for waiting

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I'm in a surgery waiting room for the next 4 hours until my son's procedure is finished.
This reminds me how hard it is to wait, to not control the outcome of something.
Waiting is life, isn't it?
We're aways waiting for things we want and waiting for things we don't want to be resolved.
Waiting for them to be over.
Fixed.


Here's a prayer for those long hours you spend waiting and waiting and waiting for something to happen...
or something to stop happening:


Oh, Lord,

I wait on you like I wait for the morning after a long night.
I wait on you like a mother anticipating her baby's birth.
I wait on you like a patient awaiting a diagnosis.
I wait on you like a soldier who needs reinforcements.
I wait on you like newlyweds on their first week apart.

You have everything I need and everything I want.

Help me to be patient while I wait.
Help me to be faith-filled while I wait.
Transform me into your image because I believe that you will meet my needs,
but my heart…

Praying Psalm 66 when life gets fiery

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I'd like to share a prayer of praise formed from Psalm 66.
It seems pertinent in helping assuage our fear over the global implications during this COVID-19 pandemic.


Praise our God,
people of the world!

Let the sound of our praise be heard by everyone.
He has preserved our lives
and kept us from going under forever.
Yes, He is testing us--
God is refining us like silver in the fire,
drawing our insecurities, fears, and faithlessness to the surface,
not to kill us or harm us,
but to perfect us--
to make us completely pure.

He has brought us into the prisons of this world,
giving us burdens to bear and offenses to carry.
Why?
Why would God do this, if He loves us?

Here's why:
He leads us through fire and water,
through the deserts and wilderness of our spiritual journeys
to lead us into a place of abundance.
He brings us into the open spaces of freedom.
Without the fire, we would never recognize the gift of choice, love, and abundance.

Lord, I will come to your feet and worship Y…

A Psalm for anxiety

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Have you ever woken up feeling anxious and unsettled?
Do a few dozen responsibilities and concerns fight against one another in your brain?
Feeling nausea or fear in the pit of your stomach?
Are you ever overwhelmed by the sense of defeat and failure when you haven't failed at something?

Hello, Anxiety.

You're a tough one to beat.

When I'm struggling with anxiety, I like to read Psalm 13 and Psalm 31. Several other Psalms speak to fear, oppression, and grief--which can feel similar to anxiety--but these two seem to zero in on the cloak-and-dagger enemy that is anxiety: our own minds and emotions.

Here's a prayer from Psalm 31:

Oh, Lord,

You are the Comforter and the Healer.
I need your power in my life.
I feel a lot of anxiety and pressure right now.

I honestly can't tell how much is true pressure,
real deadlines,
or just my own unrealistic expectations.
I am pressuring myself,
attempting to either control, direct, or manage
everything I care about.

I need you to manage me.

Take away…

Confession of racism in the U.S. & a prayer for Arbery's justice

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Maybe you ran 2.23 miles Friday in honor of runner Ahmaud Arbery, who was chased down and shot to death by Gregory and Travis McMichael on Feb. 23, 2020. Ahmaud would have been 26 Saturday, May 8.

Four months after the shooting, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation has decided to arrest the son and father vigilantes. But will Georgia justly prosecute this travesty of racism, racial profiling, aggravated assault, and murder?

As believers, we can and should pray for at least two things regarding this tragic situation:
1. confession of the racism in our country
2. requesting justice for the Arbery family and other non-white citizens who undergo similar persecution in "the land of the free"

Why should we confess something if we had nothing to do with it?
Answer: the same reason that Moses confessed the sins of Israel, even though he didn't commit them. Moses prayed to stop God's heavy hand of judgment, which was poised to annihilate the Israelites. Moses' faithfulness…

Pray "The Blessing" over your kids

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Lord Jehovah,

the Great I AM, 
the One who sees all,
knows all,
and loves all--

I pray your blessing over my children
to a thousand generations.
May my children and their children and their children
seek you with their whole hearts!

May they be found in you,
may you be found in them,
going behind and before them,
carving out a path of blessing and purpose!

Make them mighty men and women of God--
warriors who defend their hearts against evil,
who nurture their minds with truth,
who allow the Holy Spirit complete access and direction of their lives.

Bless them,
use them,
protect them,
challenge them,
call them into your great and mighty work!

In Jesus' name and his holy words
Amen.



"Know therefore that the Lord your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments." (Deuteronomy 7:9)

Click on the image above to hear "The Blessing" by Kari Jobe and Elevation Worship or here to read the lyrics. Pray …

Praying for your child's future spouse

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In Genesis 24, Abraham sends his servant back to Ur, the country of his origin, to find a wife for his
son Isaac. 
Abraham instructed his servant:

1. Don't take my son away from here (the Promised Land--where God had called them to be)
2. Don't find a wife from here (because this is a pagan culture)
3. Go back to our people for his wife
4. God will send an angel ahead to prepare her

Pretty cool idea.

So here's a prayer for your son or daughter's future spouse--


Lord God,

I have already dedicated my child to you.
I trust you with him/her.

You created this child in the womb,
perfectly crafting every part of him/her, just as you wished,
because You have a special calling and mission for him/her.
You want him/her to love and serve you all his/her life.
You are protecting, providing, and disciplining him/her,
molding him/her into the likeness of Your Son, Jesus.

You love this child more than I do,
which is saying a lot.
You know what is best and who is best for him/her,
which is …

Before you ask God for something, pray this...

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I was just about to pray and ask God for some important and noble things (things I can do for God), and it occurred to me that my motives might be selfish, that perhaps my heart isn't quite right. I thought about my locked doors, the little places I'd rather ignore than open.

So I didn't pray that prayer.

Here's why:

"When you ask, you do not receive because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your own pleasures."--James 4:3

"Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me."--Psalm 51:10

"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and will purify is from all unrighteousness."--1 John 1:9

"He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy."--Proverbs 28:13

Here's what I did pray:

Lord, God,

I can't ask you for anything right now,
not even direction,
not for your will,
not for your blessing.
I know your will:
it…

Your faith could change someone's life

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Look at this cool story in Matthew 9:2-8--


Some men brought to him a paralyzed man, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the man, “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven." At this, some of the teachers of the law said to themselves, “This fellow is blaspheming!” Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, “Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts?Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’?But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “Get up, take your mat and go home.”Then the man got up and went home.When the crowd saw this, they were filled with awe; and they praised God, who had given such authority to man.
Some things to notice about this story (and why it applies to you!):

Jesus saw the faith of the whole group and said to the paralytic, "Take heart, son, your sins are forgiven."Jesus told the paralytic not to be afraid. "Take heart&quo…

I feel stuck in this crisis

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Hello, 

It's me again, Lord.

I feel stuck.

There's so much to talk about,
to ask you for,
and to ask you about:

The Coronavirus
the quarantine,
the Chinese,
the economy,
the jobless,
the sick,
the first responders,
the doctors and nurses,
my work,
my home,
my family,
my church,
my community,
my country,
the world.

There is so much.
I know you're not worried.
I know you have a plan.

Of course, your plan is always to glorify your Son, Jesus.
Your plan is always to redeem us, your children.
Somehow, you do both.
It's hard to understand.

Your ways are higher than mine.
Your perspective is broader than mine.
Your purpose is holy, while mine is selfish.
You are working,
and I want to join you,
but I feel stuck in this crisis.

Develop courage in me because I am afraid.
Develop grace in me because I am judgmental.
Develop patience in me because I am impatient.
Develop compassion in me because I am selfish.

I ask you to answer my concerns,
to give me your perspective,
your heart,
and your mission.
Heal and save us al…

When you keep doing the same sin

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Have you noticed that you struggle with the same bad habits,
over and over?
Maybe it's your temper, your insecurity, your selfishness, or your critical tongue.
Deep down, you know they're not even habits.
They're sins.

This happens to me.
I make this happen, by my own choices.

Every time I try to pray,
I feel this weight.
At first, I can't tell why I feel this way
or why my prayers seems to bounce right back.
Then I realize I'm sinning again.
I'm doing the same things I always do when my soul isn't full of righteousness.

Of course, I want to confess it and stop doing it.
But I feel ashamed that I'm about to pray the same prayer again,
confess the same sin,
and enter the same battle.

I have a decision to make:
I can humble myself and confess my sin,
and start working to change,

or

I can give up.
I can say "This is me.
This is just the way I am."
I can pretend that change isn't possible,
even though I know it is.
I can assume that God is tir…

Praise & Fear

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A paraphrase of Psalm 34

I won't stop bragging about God and what He's doing all the time.
Praising him will be my normal conversation.
I will boast about God's goodness,
even to people who are suffering
because it will encourage them.

Join me in singing about God's goodness--
He always designs the right futures for us!

When I am afraid, I pray to God--
specifically asking Him what His will is
and what He wants to do in my life right now.
When I am afraid, and there are no answers.
My fear always vanishes.
I can move forward with courage and purpose,
even though I don't know what will happen next.

Anyone who depends on God
can face hardship and crises
without feeling ashamed or depressed.
Their faces will be joyful and radiant.
I am safe in God's hands.

I have called on God many times.
He always hears me.
He always saves me.
He always changes my troubles into blessings.

Like an army, God camps out all around me,
guarding me from the enemy
and delivering me at j…

Today I'm thankful for ...

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Oh, Lord,

Today I'm thankful for...

tulips
the sunshine
doing a craft project for someone
a repaired A/C
chocolate chip cookie dough (and eventually cookies)
adult kids working from home
two freezers full of food (for the adult kids working from home)
my she-shed (because adult kids working from home are not always quiet)
a computer to keep me connected
Scripture--it never gets old or irrelevant
Clorox wipes (although I don't have any)
Amazon (to get the off-brand wipes)
flowering cherry and pear trees (dogwoods are next!)
a warm bed
French toast and syrup
my childhood memories
a recently-organized garage and potting shed
verdant green grass
the smell of stained wood
trash pick-up on my street
the diffuser with lemon grass oil (to off-set the smell of the stain)
books
students of all ages
people who have poured into me
Friday (it's tomorrow!)
this blog.

All these things are therapy for me today.
They are reminders of your infinite goodness,
some of the many reasons you don…

You are a God of life

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This is what the Lord says--

your Redeemer who has made all things, 
who formed you in the womb: 
I am the Lord who has made all things, 
who alone stretched out the heavens, 
who spread out the earth by myself..." (Isaiah 44:24)


Lord, Jehovah,

I worship you.
You have made all things,
including me,
and you can do anything.
You are a God of life.

You foil the attempts of the wicked to discredit you,
You reveal yourself to the unbelieving,
You rebuild people and cities that are broken down,
You restore inheritance to the poor,
You place the lonely in families,
You use both the ungodly and the godly to accomplish your will,
You water the earth and display your creative genius,
You heal diseases and raise the dead.

You cannot be delayed.
You cannot be surprised.
You cannot be overcome.

You made all things.
You restore all things.
You use all things

You make all things new.

I love you.
Amen.

Isaiah 44

A prayer for justice and vengeance

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Oh, Lord God of love and vengeance, 

You uphold the cause of the fatherless and widows.
You put the orphans in families.
You release those imprisoned by sin into freedom.
You bring justice for the abused.
You feed the hungry and clothe the naked.
You sit with the lonely.
You heal the sick.
You remember the abandoned.
You lift up the fallen.
You embrace the unloved.

You are all we need.
Always and forever.
You are everything we could ever long for, 
hope for,
or strive for.

No, you are more than that.
I praise you and believe in you 
that you will serve justice and give hope to _________
as he/she fights against the evil forces that come against his/her life.
I pray for God's Holy Spirit to pour out like fire from heaven 
on ___________ and the needs sitting before him/her.

Decimate the evil that pushes in
and the enemy that sows doubt, fear, and worry.
I pray against the Liar of all lies,
against his forces of evil
and against the people who allow the enemy to work in them and through them.

If they will not…