For Perseverance

My prayer today for my kids and my grandkids, from the "31 Ways to Pray for Your Kids" app for iPhone and iPad.

Saturday Psalm #86

Hear, O LORD, and answer me,
for I am poor and in great need.
Defend me, for I am devoted to you.
You are my God;
save your servant who trusts in you.

Be gentle with me
and be kind to me, O Lord;
I'm calling on you right now.

Give me back my joy, O Lord,
for your joy is my strength.

You are gracious and good, O Lord,
overflowing with love to all who call to you.
So overflow in my direction, LORD,
please be moved to action by my cry for mercy.

I'm in trouble, as you know;
I'm in need; that's nothing new.
I call to you, and wait for your answer.
What else can I do?
There is no one else to whom I can turn.
There is no god but you,
and I have no hope but in you.

Let all the nations come and worship before you, O Lord;
let all your people bring glory to your name.
For you are awesome and do marvelous deeds;
you alone are God.

Teach me your way, O LORD,
and I will walk in your truth;
give me an undivided heart,
that I may fear your name.

I praise you, O Lord my God, with all my heart;
I glorify your name,
and I will glorify it forever.
I know your love for me is great,
and you've saved me so many times before.
So come to my aid now, O God,
as the fur flies all around me.
Save me from every temptation and attack,
every stumble and setback.
For there is no one else to whom I can turn.
There is no god but you,
and I have no hope but in you.

Turn to me and have mercy on me;
give me strength,
give me energy,
give me hope,
give me joy,
give me clarity,
and wisdom,
and effectiveness.
Give me a sign of your goodness,
that my enemies may see it and be put to shame,
for you, O LORD, have helped me and comforted me.
Amen.

(photo via pixabay.com)

For Me and Those I Meet

Lord God, as I speak to and teach and meet with
hundreds of writers today and tomorrow,
help me to instruct,
inspire,
comfort,
and guide
with wisdom
and effectiveness.

Grant more energy,
humor,
creativity,
focus, and
insight,
than I could ever possess
or relay
on my own.

Let your Spirit rest on me
and work in me
and through me,
according to your good pleasure
and perfect will,
in Jesus' name, amen.

Valentine

Like summer snow
floating from a sun-filled sky,
draping airy-white on flowered fields,
Your love astonished me.

No frilly show,
no assorted-chocolate pledge,
no candy hearts or silver kisses
disclosed your care for me;

But unsparing,
thorn-wearing
cross-bearing love,
that opened hands and feet and side
to spill your heart for me,

To recreate,
inundate my longing soul
with giving, holding, accepting,
enfolding love for me.

Pruning Prayer

Abba, you know I don't like the pruning process. I want uninterrupted, straight-line growth...
but I confess that as arrogance and ambition. I open my heart to your pruning process, confident in your loving nature, and good, wise plans for me. Do what you will with me, amen.

(photo via pixabay.com)

Safe in Your Hands

I know, O God,
that wherever I travel,
you will be with me,
and with my lovely bride,
who travels with me.
There is nowhere we can go,
no situation we can face,
which is outside your love and strength;
and so I commit us both
into your care and keeping on this journey,
knowing that we are always safe in your hands. Amen.

Twin Virtues


My prayer today for my kids and my grandkids, from the "31 Ways to Pray for Your Kids" app for iPhone and iPad.

Saturday Psalm #86

Hear, O LORD, and answer me,
for I am poor and in great need.
Defend me, for I am devoted to you.

You are my God;
save your servant who trusts in you.

Be gentle with me
and be kind to me, O Lord;
I'm calling on you right now.

Give me back my joy, O Lord,
for your joy is my strength.

You are gracious and good, O Lord,
overflowing with love to all who call to you.
So overflow in my direction, LORD,
please be moved to action by my cry for mercy.

I'm in trouble, as you know;
I'm in need; that's nothing new.
I call to you, and wait for your answer.
What else can I do?
There is no one else to whom I can turn.
There is no god but you,
and I have no hope but in you.

Let all the nations come and worship before you, O Lord;
let all your people bring glory to your name.
For you are awesome and do marvelous deeds;
you alone are God.

Teach me your way, O LORD,
and I will walk in your truth;
give me an undivided heart,
that I may fear your name.

I praise you, O Lord my God, with all my heart;
I glorify your name,
and I will glorify it forever.
I know your love for me is great,
and you've saved me so many times before.
So come to my aid now, O God,
as the fur flies all around me.
Save me from every temptation and attack,
even the well-intentioned ones.
For there is no one else to whom I can turn.
There is no god but you,
and I have no hope but in you.

Turn to me and have mercy on me;
give me strength,
give me energy,
give me hope,
give me joy,
give me clarity,
and wisdom,
and effectiveness.
Give me a sign of your goodness,
that my enemies may see it and be put to shame,
for you, O LORD, have helped me and comforted me.
Amen.

(photo via pixabay.com)

For the Blessings of a Teetotaler

Lord, thank you
that I've never been drunk,
have never suffered a hangover,
never blacked out,
never embarrassed myself or my loved ones
by drunken behavior,
never hurt myself or others
while under the influence,
and never made life-changing alcohol- or drug-induced decisions to later, deep regret.
Thank you that through no special effort or particular credit of mine
I've enjoyed the blessings of being a nearly total teetotaler all of my life,  in Jesus' name, amen.

(photo via pixabay.com)

For a New Book

Lord, thank you so much for my new book--and my first children's book--Don't Close Your Eyes, which (as you know) releases today. I ask you, please, to bless it and all who buy it, read it, and share it with others. Make it a blessing to parents, grandparents, children, and all who love books and children. Grant that it may enchant readers, enrich relationships, and foster sweet sleep and precious memories, in Jesus' name, amen.

Herder of the Stars

Herder of the stars in the sky, we are grateful for the short month.

For unlatching the heavens and letting the new moon out. This snow must melt and this ice will gurgle into our stock pond under thy strengthening sunshine.

Even so, all our cold tears must turn to sweetwater under the warmth of thy everlasting care and sprout the seeds of hope stored high and dry in our hearts.

Put thine unerring finger on our compass, Lord, that we run this terrace rightly and plan a year's work on this farm that will delight our Great Landlord.

Whether we seed, weed, feed, or breed, walk close by and lend us the counsel of the Good Shepherd, all of whose lambs we will feed, even as thou feedest us.

Amen.

(from the book, The Farmer Gives Thanks; photo via everystockphoto.com)

More Love to Thee, O Christ



More love to thee, O Christ, more love to thee!
Hear thou the prayer I make on bended knee.
This is my earnest plea: More love, O Christ, to thee;
more love to thee, more love to thee!

Once earthly joy I craved, sought peace and rest;
now thee alone I seek, give what is best.
This all my prayer shall be: More love, O Christ, to thee;
more love to thee, more love to thee!

Let sorrow do its work, come grief and pain;
sweet are thy messengers, sweet their refrain,
when they can sing with me: More love, O Christ, to thee;
more love to thee, more love to thee!

Then shall my latest breath whisper thy praise;
this be the parting cry my heart shall raise;
this still its prayer shall be: More love, O Christ, to thee;
more love to thee, more love to thee!

(words by Elizabeth P. Prentiss, music by William H. Doane)

Saturday Psalm #85

Lord, you have poured out blessings
on your people!
You have guided
and been good to us all the way.
You forgave us our many sins,
our stupid mistakes,
our poor leadership,
our petty controversies,
and more.

You held back your fury
and, from time to time, I'm sure, your laughter.
Now restore us again, O God of our salvation.
As you have done before, once more lay aside what we deserve
and shower on us what your love decrees.
Revive us again,
and we will be careful to thank you and celebrate your goodness.
Show us your unfailing love, O Lord,
and grant us your salvation.

I will listen carefully to you,
I will lean in to catch your whispers,
and watch your face closely to pick up on your signals.
Speak peace to your faithful people.
Speak wisdom and victory and righteousness.
Your salvation is near to those who fear you,
so our land will be filled with your glory.

In you are joined unfailing love and uncompromising truth.
In your presence is found righteousness and peace!
In your presence, truth springs up like crocuses from the earth,
and righteousness beams down like starshine from heaven.
Pour down your blessings.
Pour out your bounty.
Send on us a bountiful harvest,
and let your church take to the streets
with news of your kindness.

(photo illustration via pixabay.com)

For Things that Didn't Happen

Thank you, Lord, that much evil that could have happened to me yesterday didn't.

Thank you that I didn't run out of gas,
that I didn't get a ticket or a toothache.

Thank you that I didn't stub my toe or bite my tongue.

Thank you that I didn't hurt a friend or a loved one,
or anyone, to my knowledge.

Thank you that I didn't trip and fall,
I didn't lose my wallet,
didn't lose my voice,
my job,
my health,
my wife,
my children,
my grandchildren,
my mind...yet.

Thank you that I didn't fall into conscious, willful sin.

Thank you that I didn't neglect you in prayer.

In this and in everything, Lord, I give thanks, in Jesus' name, amen.