Tuesday Prayer: Burden Bearer

…casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. 

1 Peter 5:7

Oh Father, today we are so thankful that You do care! You are good, and Your ways are trustworthy. This world continually stirs up anxiety and grief in our hearts. Some days, it seems that evil has the upper hand, and other days, it seems that the whole world works against us and nothing goes our way. 

Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.

Psalm 55:22

Yet even in the midst of all of it, You remain perfect and pure; our Rock and our Shield. Thank You that Your word is truth and that You really do work all things for the good of those who love You. Thank You for caring for us as a Father who tenderly looks after His children. 

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

Romans 8:28

Today we confess every anxiety and all the burdens and fears we carry. Lord, they are too much for us to bear! We lay them at the foot of the Throne of Grace, casting them on You because You are strong enough to shoulder the burdens we cannot manage; casting them on You because Your grace is sufficient for us and Your power is perfected in our weaknesses and because we trust You. 

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me

2 Corinthians 12:9

Thank You for allowing us access through Christ to Your throne where You provide the mercy we need and grace to help us. We confess a never ending need of You!

We need You for every waking moment, for each triumph, and to sustain us through every single tragedy. We need Your strength because ours is too small. We need Your wisdom because we have none in ourselves. And Lord, we need Your mercy for we have fallen short of Your glory. 

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus

Romans 3:23-24

Thank You today and every day that in Christ, we can find every single need met in perfection and completeness. To You be the glory, God, for the great things You have done! It’s in the name of Jesus we confess our need and offer our praises, amen. 

Tuesday Prayer: Relationships

Elohim, in the first mention of You in Genesis, Your name is given as a plural. In Yourself, You are a fellowship of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. This is a mystery which You have chosen to reveal to us in Your word – a profound and infinite mystery which our finite minds struggle to grasp. Yet we are not commanded to understand but to believe.

If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things?
(John 3:12)

Today we choose belief no matter what. We commit ourselves to walk with You in humble trust, knowing that You are who You say You are and are able to do what You say You can do. And we are thankful that You are not a disinterested, detached God. Instead, You are the God of relationships; the Triune Creator who deigns to commune with His creation. You are the perfect fellowship, inviting flawed and rebellious beings to lay aside our sin and join in Your holy unity.

As we go about our lives on this ball of rock and dirt, help us to be mindful that we who are in Christ belong to You. As Your word says in 1 Corinthians 6:20, we were bought with a price and are no longer our own. We are literally redeemed – bought back from a temporary master by the blood of the Holy One of God.

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
(1 Corinthians 6:19-20)

Because of this simple yet fathomless fact, every aspect of our being ought to be in submission to You – even our relationships. Yet You allow choice, because love can only choose; it cannot coerce. Today, show us those areas where our relationships are not guided by You and Your ways.

In fact, start with our our relationship to You. Show us where it is broken and in need of restoration. From that primary and most vital relationship, we pray that healing, love, and unity will flow out from Your heart, fill ours, and spill over into others as we walk in obedience to You. Let us truly be the branches of Your Vine with Your life-giving truth and love making us strong for fruitful, eternal service to You, amen.

I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.
(John 15:5)

Daddy Can

Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”
Matthew 14:31

Yesterday, I had the privilege of spending a few hours with two sweet young ladies, ages one and three. It has been a while since my kids were that age, and I found it delightful to go through the nap time, the fascination with all the big, wide world, and even the inevitable but short-lived teary sessions when big sister got a little too intense for little sister.

During our time together, the oldest one frequently told me such things as, “My daddy can build anything!

When the littlest was carrying around a piece broken off from a yard toy, big sister had no doubts. “My daddy will fix it.”

When we found two sky-blue bird eggs in the grass, she said, “My daddy will put them back.”

Underlying all of these statements was a confident and blissful certainty that whatever might be wrong with the world, Daddy could handle it. All at once, I was convicted by the very sweetness and simplicity of her trust. For I know her daddy, and while he is an excellent Christian man, husband, and father, there are broken things in this world that are far beyond his power to set straight.

But that is not the case with my Heavenly Father.

The last few months of my life have been marked by oddity. There are tasks I have done for years that I felt called to stop for a time, though I can’t say how long which is troublesome to a planner like me.

More than one exercise I was certain God was calling me to perform has ended with anticlimactic and depressingly fruitless-seeming results. Chronic migraine has awakened again after two years of relative dormancy, and each time I believe we have hit on an answer, it charges back in to prove me wrong.

What’s more, I am facing a strong possibility that my oldest two may go to private school next year; a tremendous change from the last several years of home schooling and thus a great and gaping unknown. This, perhaps more than anything else, has left me feeling emotionally torn as if I’ve been fired from the job I’ve poured everything into.

Beyond my family, the world is going crazy. This years’ presidential hopefuls leave me feeling dismal in my most positive moods, and so many of my fellow Americans seem to have separated church and state in their hearts so entirely that we no longer expect politicians to be moral or good or anything, really, but corrupt.

Perhaps resigned to some idea that corruption is “inevitable” within government, we have allowed it by repeatedly voting it into place.

Then there is the rise of militant branches of Islam, the frightening slide towards moral insanity, the tensions between “races” (which, frankly,  I cannot understand because while I see different skin tones and cultures, I see only one human race populating this earth)… and on, and on, and on.

I have allowed myself to get caught up in fear of the unknown, perhaps even a belief that any of these things are mine to handle. My fear of personal failure has caused my heart to forget that just because God calls me to do something does not mean it will appear successful by the world’s–or indeed even by my own–standards. The rise of darkness, ignorance, unconcern, rudeness, and a general public short attention span that reminds me startlingly of the world described in George Orwell’s 1984 have all crowded into my mind.

In short, I have fallen into the sin of unbelief. I have, to my shame, once again worried about what I will do, forgetting that no matter how large the problem or how shattered the component, my Daddy truly can take care of it. I cannot do it and there is much out of my control, but there is nothing out of His control or beyond the scope of His power.

I do not need to fear the unknown, for it is not unknown to my Father. I only need to follow Him, obediently, humbly, and cheerfully certain that He will accomplish His perfect plan no matter how far-fetched or round-about it may seem to me. I need the guileless, frank, honest, and complete trust of a well-loved child, for such I am.

Father, forgive my lack of faith and help me to trust in You, not just logically, but with my whole heart and with every atom of my being. Remind me that You have not called upon me to know the future nor to understand it, but to believe on You and follow You. Humble me as a child who knows she can do little, but her Father can do all things, amen.  

Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.
Luke 18:17