July 1, 2003

Prayer- Just do it!

Father,

How I praise You for Your word! It is filled with life-changing truth! You have given us treasures beyond our wildest dreams all wrapped up in the Bible. Yet what good does it do us if we just read it or listen to it? Father, help us to want to do it!

Thank You that we don’t have to do it on our own. How could we ever fulfill all You have written for us. How many times have I strived to be and do all You have told me to. The more I try, the more I realize I cannot do it on my own! I fall short every time. But with Jesus, I can do all things as He gives me His strength! Father, thank You for sending Jesus to live in my heart to help me live out Your word. HE fulfills it. HE does it through me! HE brings the word alive!

All those great ideas that we read about in the Bible are only ideas until we ask Jesus to help us do them! All the sudden they are living truths! As we ask Jesus to help us do what the Bible says, You provide circumstances to be able to practice them. You also give us Your Holy Spirit to remind us of what it says, and to teach us, and to reveal more and more to us. Jesus brings Your word Alive! The more HE helps me know, the more I realize there is no end to what there is to know. Jesus is the key, the way, the truth and the word!

Father, help me to not just read or listen to Your word, but to do it!!

July 2, 2003

Prayer- little answers to prayer

Father,

Thank You for working with Your life-changing power when we pray. Thank You for letting us be able to pray for others. I especially want to thank you for the friends with the marriage in crisis. Just when it looks like there is no way possible, You step in. Father, thank You for the efforts they are each making. I know You are inspiring them to at least try. There has been so much hurt, mistrust and angry bitterness. Anyone would look at the situation and say there is no hope.

With You, there is always hope. Love is the most powerful force available. They both love You and are willing to make attempts out of obedience to You. Father, thank You for their little acts of service to one another. Even though they may seem uncomfortable and awkward at first, help them each to continue until they feel Your love flowing through them and spilling out into their marriage.

Help them to be willing to show kindness and gentleness and love in more small ways. Let it become such a way of life for them that before they know it, they really enjoy caring for one another. Let them do it no matter what the reaction. Let them do it as they were doing it for You. Show them how to love in a deeper way than they ever thought possible.

Let them both see the hope. Let them put their hope in You. Let them trust their marriage to You. Someday soon, may they even turn around and be able to help show other married couples the way through their crisis.

July 3, 2003

Prayer- true FREEDOM!

Father,

I’m Free!! Thank You, God, for giving me freedom in Christ! Thank you that I am able to face a crisis with one of my children today knowing that I am free. Because of my life with You, I can face this challenge, knowing the solution doesn’t depend on my own frantic attempts. Thank You that I can rest, knowing that You are in control despite the circumstances.

What a privilege to bring this burden to You and know that You will begin working ALL things together for good. I can even give my child back to You, knowing that You can lead them through this trial far better than I ever could.

I can remember being imprisoned- to worries, fears, insecurities, and to sin in my life with no out. Then I surrendered all to Jesus. I gave up to him- even if it meant being enslaved to him forever. I found freedom! What a joyful abundant life with him! I love knowing that I am totally dependent upon him. I can do nothing without him. Yet through him, I can do all things!

Father, bring my child to the point of total surrender. Let them find FREEDOM as they declare their dependence upon You.

July 7, 2003

Prayer- wrestling with God

Heavenly Father,

I have been wrestling with You over a certain issue lately. When I finally surrendered, You won- but so did I!!! I love the way You work!

Sometimes a situation comes up that I feel so passionately about, it’s hard to completely let it go. I struggle in prayer to seek Your will and guidance. I feel so strongly about it that I want it solved right now! I push to control things the way I think they ought to be done and all the while You have hold of me asking me to be still and let You be God.

Thank You for being patient with me while I fight in prayer to truly place things in Your hands. At times, it’s hard to just hand it over. Forgive my lack of trust. Of course, You are at work! Of course, You know better than I do. Humbly, I bowed before You and placed the whole thing in Your hands.

It so amazing! Right after I did, You began to show me how many different ways You are using this situation to affect more lives than I could ever dream of. While I was trying so hard to argue the case for my way of handling it, I didn’t see that You were already at work weaving Your masterpiece in many lives all at the same time! You are my amazing, powerful, all-knowing, creative God! I yield to Your will, which far surpasses my ideas. Let Your will be done!

July 8, 2003

Prayer- seeking God’s wisdom

Father,

What a privilege to come straight to You! I’m so grateful I don’t have to rely on human wisdom. It may seem logical, but it is fickle and unstable. The world is exploding with “knowledge” right now. Between the over-abundance of information available, all it seems to do is bring confusion and fear. The news is filled with reports of the latest studies that reveal new causes along with the latest possible aids against cancer. There are so many I can’t remember what I’m supposed to be eating or not eating now.

There are experts everywhere on TV, in print and on the internet who tell us what we should be doing ( or is it what we shouldn’t be doing? I forget.) Father, there are even well-meaning friends who offer their advice. A lot of it is good, too. But…

I choose to come to You first. You have all wisdom and knowledge. In every situation, let me seek Your will first. Who else has made Heaven and earth? Who else created universes in tiny molecules which have not even been discovered or massive stars which defy our imagination? Who else knows for certain how our world began and when our time will end? Who else created billions of unique individuals with quirky personalities and knows every number of hairs on their head? Who else knows the past, the present and the future?

Why turn to the latest “expert” when I can turn to You? You have told us that when we keep our eyes on You, all else will fall into place. I come to You for wisdom, guidance, leadership. I come to You for so many reasons… most of all, I come to You because I love You. Thank You for sending Jesus to open the way so we can come straight to You!

July 9, 2003

Prayer- seeing satan’s attacks

Father,

I praise You! You have given us complete authority and power over all demons and satan himself with all his sneaky schemes! Thank you for the dramatic proof yesterday when my friend came under his attack. You used one of her own relatives to try to make her believe she was worthless and hopeless right when she is in the middle of a life-changing decision to serve You with the rest of her life, ministering to those imprisoned to drugs and alcohol. What painful lies he used!

Father, I have seen You work through her. I already know hundreds of lives have been affected by her testimony. Lord, she is in the middle of stepping out in complete faith in You and giving up a lucrative job to help addicts. It comes as no surprise that she should be attacked by satan who knows she can help lead more out of the prison he has built from substance abuse.

What is so strange is the form of attack he can come in- from a loved one. The slithery liar and schemer chooses ways he knows hurt us and trip us up the most. He would not even bother attacking if we were not a threat to his dark kingdom. Thank You, Lord, that You warned us to be on the alert for his poisonous arrows. Sometimes they feel more like bazookas, but it doesn’t matter the form of the weaponry- he has absolutely NO POWER over us!

I only pray that You continue to make us immediately aware of his inevitable attempts to make us ineffective in Your Kingdom. Help us to have eyes to see when we are being attacked and to immediately pray for help in telling him to get away. He does! Every time! He must cower and slither off in defeat in Your Holy presence. There is nothing to fear from him as long as we stay with You. He knows it, too. Thank You for helping my friend defeat him. Father, keep us close to You so we can recognize and rebuke satan in our lives- and in the lives of those around us that he tries so hard to sabotage.

July 11, 2003

Prayer- for my Daddy

Father,

How I thank You for my Daddy. I especially thank You that he has continued to live, despite the fact they sent him home on hospice care to die three years ago. I am so grateful for his faith, trust and joy in You through everything. Thank You for his smile and the twinkle in his eyes. My parents have always worked so hard. I remember praying my heart out for my parents to be able to relax and enjoy life. Little did I know the answer to that prayer would come disguised in the form of cancer.

Lord, thank You for helping my parents savor just sitting and listening to music or reading together during the past 3 years. Thank You for the delightful ways You have helped them look back on their lives and see the good fruit of their labor. You’ve also helped them to come to peace with the inevitable regrets one has when looking back. You’ve allowed them to be surrounded by family and friends who openly share their love because of the “terminal cancer.” I have been greatly blessed to have been born and raised by such wonderful parents. They have nurtured a godly legacy in me.

Father, the days are getting harder for my dad. His body is wearing out. Now, it’s work just to breathe and get up. As he draws closer to his time to go Home, please reassure him in very real ways of Your presence. Soften his sorrow at the thought of leaving his beloved wife and family. Let him know, it will be just a blink of an eye before we are all reunited. Give him a glimpse of what is ahead in Heaven. Let him finish the work he has to do, and then gently take him Home. Father, bless my Daddy.

July 14, 2003

Prayer- Here I am

Father,

You are my Lord, my God, my Creator, my Teacher, my Counselor, my Guide, my Friend, my all-in-all. You reign over all creation- and yet You have unselfishly given me so much. You sent Jesus to live and die for me even when I was stubbornly trying to live my own life apart from You. You love me so much that once I “gave in” to Your love-You arranged to let Jesus live with me even now. What a delight to know I will never be alone. There is nothing that could ever happen to me that You will not lead me through.

Here I am today to offer myself to You. I trust You to use me in whatever way You know is best. I give You my life to spend; I give You this day; I give You my hands to use; I give You my voice to speak; I give You my smile to cheer; I give You my time to arrange; I give You my marriage to bless; I give You my home to live in; I give You my family to lead; I give You my will to mold to Yours; I give You my mind to change to Your thinking.

Father, my ways are so puny and insignificant compared to the plans You have. Here I am to humbly acknowledge that You know best in all things. Lead me in every step of my life. Use me for Your perfect will. I trust You. I know that Your way leads to life- not just for me, but for everyone around me. Here I am. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit and send me where You need me.

July 15, 2003

Prayer- where two or three gather

Father,

What a delight when all my children gather back together in my home- the young ones still at home, the older ones who are married and have their own lives- and of course, the grandkids! There’s eating, laughing, playing games, visiting and fun and lots of reminiscing! How I cherish having all of my family gather together!

Is that how You feel when two or more of Your children gather together in Your name? Do You just enjoy listening and visiting and being with us? You promised us that wherever two or three gather in Your name, You will be in our midst. You are here, even now!

How I love to gather with Your other followers/ believers/ children. Even more- how I love to pray with two or more. You also promised that if two agree on earth, it will be done for us by You. Father, how I cherish my prayer partners (the long-term and short term ones). We have a bond- a history! We are eternally related! We’ve gathered in Your name and prayed for many things over the years. When we get together, we love to reminisce and praise You for all the answered prayers we have seen! How our faith has increased because we have prayed through hard times and good times. We have seen You move in miraculous ways just because we have asked together! Does it bless You to have us pray in agreement- whether in a home, church, over the phone or by email? Does it bring joy to Your heart to have us all come together in Your name to seek You? We honor You, for You are our Father.

July 16, 2003

Prayer- be my filter!

OK, God!

I need You to be my filter again. I come to Your listening chair before I say anything to anyone else. I have learned from experience to run things by You first!

Yesterday, I suddenly got very sick and started feeling a little sorry for myself. I thought no one cared (could it be because no one knew?) When I called my husband at work, he was extremely busy and couldn’t talk long. He’s been so overrun lately between work and helping others, I started getting upset that he wasn’t giving me attention. (Yes, Lord- I know that’s one of the reasons I love him- because he works so hard for us and he loves helping people. And yes, he gives me much more attention than I could ever hope for.)

When my daughter came slamming in the house, I knew she must be having a difficult time with her boyfriend. I felt bad for her- until she came complaining to me that I didn’t leave her enough dinner! I wanted so badly to get upset right back at her- but You reminded me how all-encompassing new love is. (Yes, Lord. I know she wasn’t really upset at me. It’s hard work being in love!)

I tossed and turned all night, trying to get comfortable. Sweating from a fever, I got irritated that everyone else was asleep. (Yes, Lord. You were awake- right there with me. And yes, Lord, I know my illness was just short-term, not like my dad’s and others I know.)

This morning when I got up, I saw the stack of dirty dishes and started to gripe to myself about the mess from one night of being out of commission. (Yes, Lord, I’m very thankful to have a houseful of loved ones who make dirty dishes and who do care very deeply about me!)

OK, Lord, I feel much better now! I think I’m even well! Thanks for being my filter again!

July 17, 2003

Prayer- my friend’s heart

Father,

You are the holder of life. You know the sanctity and holiness of life better than anyone. What a comfort to trust in Your will for our lives, knowing how precious a price You place on each of us. Even above our physical well being, You hold our spiritual well being at an even higher value.

Knowing all this, I pray for my friend who faces heart cauterization with a possible angioplasty and stint placed in his heart. Father, I pray for all to go well with him physically, but even more, I pray that You let him literally place himself in Your hands. May You anoint him with Your peace that goes beyond human explanation. Let him (and his wife) be so willing to simply trust You that all fear melts away.

There is something about the heart. Perhaps it’s because all our blood is pumped through it to keep us alive. But actually, life depends on You. Once we ask Jesus to live in us, His blood flows through us giving us eternal life that can never be threatened or killed.

Give my friend and his wife the reassurance that You hold his heart in Your hands and Jesus’ blood flows through him and there is nothing to fear.

July 18, 2003

Prayer- for someone with no where else to go

Father,

I just got off the phone with one of my relatives who is a really nice guy in a lot of ways- but oh, Lord, how I pray for his stubbornness. I pray that it doesn’t do him in. Once again, he has lost almost everything. I do not understand why he just won’t give in and turn to You.

For years, I have seen him choose his own way and his own addiction. I have watched him lose his wife, his job, his cars, his friends. Here he is again with nowhere else to go. Father, I thought he was there before- and urged and begged him to reach out to You. I tried so hard to explain that nothing in his life would be right until he surrenders to You.

I told him that I knew from experience that life without You is hell, and life with You is filled with peace. If only he knew how easy it is to just give up and how rewarding it is to live with Jesus in his life. Father, why is it so hard for him to make that choice? If only he could see from the other side. If only he knew what he is missing.

Father, You know my heart cries for him (and for all those around him). As he sits right now in the loneliness of his room, let him come to the place where he finally surrenders to You. Forgive him for the anger, bitterness and blame he chooses to hang on to. He doesn’t realize what he’s doing. Let all the seeds of Your love that have ever been planted in his life come to his mind right now. You know that I have a strange mixture of wanting to wring his neck and crying for his soul to be saved. Father, thank You for being patient with him. Let this no-where-else-to-turn-time be another chance for him to turn to You. Let this be the time he quits running!

July 21, 2003

Prayer- “on call” for You

Father,

You are always with me! You are always available- whether I need You in the middle of the night or in the heat of the day; Whether there’s a crisis or a celebration; whether I’m completely alone or in the middle of a huge crowd. You have faithfully led me through my life every step of the way. (Even through the times I stubbornly tried to live life my way, You patiently brought me back to You.)

Father, I want to be faithful to You. I want to be “on call” for You. Remind me to never be too busy for You. Forgive me for the times I set up my plans and get irritated when they are interrupted. Father, give me a sensitive spirit, so I will know when You need to use me. Bring those who You need me to point to You. Remind me it is not my job to chose who You send or when You send them. I want to be available to whoever You place in my path. Keep my heart humble to hear the messages You send me through others. Let me be ready to answer the phone, the door and for those chance meetings when You send someone my way. Let me always be in prayer- living with You- so I’ll be ready on a moment’s notice to give the hope You’ve given me. Remind me that You are in charge of eternal life, my job is to point to You in all things!

Father, help me always be determined to be cheerfully “on call” for You.

July 22, 2003

Prayer- water in a parched land

Father,

I just got through watering my plants outside. In this heat, they are already in danger of burning up from lack of moisture- and I just watered the day before yesterday! I have several plants that wilt and look as though they might not make it. And yet, when they soak up the fresh cool water, they almost immediately perk up and are filled with new life!

Lord, You are my Living Water! In the treacherous heat of this world, there is no way I can make it without You. I will surely wilt and die and not be able to withstand this parched land. I come to You to lead me beside Your still waters. I want my roots to go down deep into Your River of life. I need to drink of Your water EVERY DAY. Let me be still and soak up Your Holy Spirit.

Father, I’m so glad You are always there to water me when I turn to You. You never fail me. Lord, it breaks my heart to see so many trying to survive this life without You. They are parched and dry and desperately seeking for relief from the torrid heat. Father, if only they will begin to seek You, they will know the joy and security of resting in Your shade. They will be full of lush, fruitful life that never runs dry. Father, use me to offer them a cup of Your life-sustaining water.

July 23, 2003

Prayer- I want to die

Father,

I want to die to myself. I don’t like my old self- with all the selfishness, pride, stubbornness, fears, complaining, whining, insecurities. I want to nail my old self up on a cross and let Jesus be resurrected in me. Help me to take up my cross daily and follow You into brand new life.

You are such a powerful and loving Father God, that when I offer myself to die, You give me more life! What a rich, blessed wonderful life. It is eternal life- true life- abundant life. It is never-ending and it is with You! It is now!

Let Jesus be more and more real in my life. Let Him be known through me. Let Him live in me! Use me to carry Jesus to everyone around me. Use me in some way to help Your Kingdom come here on earth as it is in Heaven. Let there be less of me and more of Him!

Father,

Today I’d like to pray for a young man named Rocky and a young girl named Kalyn, both who have been in jail for a while now. Lord, thank You for showing them both You are there with them. Please help them continue to keep their hearts, minds and souls focused on You. Let this “time” they serve as prisoners draw them very close to You. Let them soak up Your word and be still in Your presence. Use this time to prepare them for all Your good purposes.

In fact, Lord, I’d like to pray for prisoners everywhere today. Open their ears so they can hear you in the solitude of their cells. I pray for those who are guilty of all kinds of crimes. I pray for those who have been imprisoned even though they are innocent.

Thank You for the two or three prisoners I read about who began to agree in prayer for a revival in their prison. Once again, You answered in an amazing way. Not only have there been regular prayer and revival meetings in their facility, but Promise Keepers heard about it and is broadcasting one of their revivals to be seen in prisons via satellite. Lord, open the hearts of wardens everywhere to let their inmates particpate. Let my prayers join with these few inmates who started this and let their be a huge revival throughout prison systems.

Let each person who asks Jesus to be their Lord, find freedom (and love, peace and joy) in the confines of their cells.

http://www.promisekeepers.org/redeemthetime/index.htm

July 25, 2003

Prayer- help me be still

Father,

I just want to be still in Your presence- and know with all my heart, mind and soul that You are God. Settle my spirit. Quiet my mind. Let everything in me focus on You- my Holy Lord God Almighty.

July 28, 2003

Prayer- I’m terminal

Holy Father,

Thank You for the knowledge that I don’t have long to live. None of us do. This life is temporary. It could be over at any minute from a gunshot, a car wreck, a heart attack or a terrorist attack.

I want to be ready at all times so I won’t be caught off guard whenever the end comes. It is so exciting to know that the very moment I take my last breath, I step into eternity with You. Let me live always looking forward to what’s ahead, but also enjoying every minute of right now.

Help me to stare death right in the face and not be afraid- for Jesus overcame it and opened the way for me to live forever in Paradise with You. With nothing to fear, let me hold Your hand and walk through every situation each moment brings with peace and calm. You are with me in all things!

Forgive us for trying to live like this world is the only life. Let us live today with our eyes on Heaven. Let us live with the certainty we are going to die. No one escapes death. When Jesus is Lord of our lives, we simply slip from this life into glorious eternity. Father, let me live each day like it could be my last. Help me to treat others like it could be the last time I see them. Let me walk so closely with You that I yearn for You instead of the things of this earth.

July 29, 2003

Prayer- coming in & going out

Father,

There are so many times I wish I could just stay here in Your holy presence, curled up like a little girl in my Daddy’s lap. With You, all is well. All is safe and peaceful and holy. It is heaven to be alone with You. All life’s problems melt away in the glory of who You are.

I know You love to have me come and just be with You. You love to renew me and restore my soul with Your Fresh life. I also know that You want to send me back out. Just like You sent Jesus from Your presence to a dying world. Just like Jesus sent his disciples out from his presence to reach the lost. Lord, I am willing to go. I just don’t ever want to go without You.

This life is too hard. The lost and the hurting are too much for me to handle by myself. It gets discouraging when people continue to chose life apart from You when they could know the joy of Your friendship. And yet, You remind me that Your word does not go out without accomplishing what You intend it to.

So I will continue to come into the sweetness of Your presence. Fill me up with Your loving holiness and send me out. I will go where You send me. Keep me weak before You- so You can be strong in me. Shine through me with every step I take. Let me never grow tired of coming to You and then going out to bring others into Your presence.

July 30, 2003

Prayer- in awe of You

Most Holy God Almighty,

There are times I feel I know You so intimately. It’s like You are right here with me- even a part of me: guiding me, teaching me, showing me things, comforting me, continually calling me closer.

Then there are other times, I stand in complete awe of You…unable to comprehend who You are. Your holiness goes beyond comparison. You are pure love all the way through. There is not even a tiny spot of evil or malice anywhere in You. Your power and glory shine so brightly that shadows and darkness cannot stand in Your presence. Your justice overruns our pale attempts to know the difference between right and wrong. There is no end to Your mercy and grace. How is it that You- the God of everything- would go to any measure to draw us back to a sweet relationship with You?!!

How is it- that You take time from ruling heaven and earth and all creation to care about every little thing in my life? How is it- that You do the same for some other person completely on the other side of the world at the same time? How is it- that You love and are intimately involved in every person’s life on earth and in heaven?

How is it- that the more I know You and love You, I find I don’t know You at all. There is far too much of You to know. There is no end to Your holiness and love! I stand in awe of You!