Remembering him in my prayers

Remembering him in my prayers

Remembering him in my prayers | 40 Gifts of Lent | Gift 29

Today’s Reading: Ephesians 1 – end

Remembering you in my prayers…I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened… Ephesians 1:15 – 23 (NIV)

Fast and furious, he maneuvers the skate board down the steep hill. The thrill of speed and wind and conquering the downhill ride is all that matters. He can do it! And he does this well…for days and weeks and months the adrenaline pulses with each victory. There is no fear of danger, just the triumph of victory over that hill.

And then one day, he crashes.

It’s the simple things that become the biggest thing that bends the knee. A deep cut, a nasty scrape to the head, a broken bone. The physical trauma becomes our spiritual cause to pray. And our prayers are fervent and relentless for his physical healing.

Years pass and he becomes a man baring those scars deep on his skin from the adventures that sent his parents to their knees. He is now a man, maturing through the resilience of pressing on, for he has been faced with much more than physical brokenness.

And then one day he crashes.

It’s the complex things that become the biggest thing that bend the knees to pray. His spiritual trauma becomes our cause to pray. Our prayers are fervent and relentless for a true vibrant grace-giving healing in his life.

The gift is answered through our prayers: “Father, grant him a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of yourself. Please, don’t leave him to himself. Help him to feel awe and trembling and sense your beauty and sweetness and glory. Have mercy and by your Spirit awaken in him a spirit of wisdom and revelation so that when he reads or hears your wisdom and your words he will have ears to hear and eyes to see the wonder of it.”

This is a prayer that keeps on praying and keeps on seeing God answer. Through the storms and through the fray he is knowing the Lord Jesus Christ better and better.

For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better... Ephesians 1:15 – 23 (NIV) 

Prayers for him

[1] An adapted prayer for my family from, Desiring God |  Be Constant in Prayer for the Joy of Hope

About 40 Gifts of Lent 

I am anticipating the arrival of Easter and celebrating the most amazingly good gift I’ve ever received. I want to focus my heart on the fulfilled expectation of Christ’s first coming and the glorious expectation of His second coming. To continue reading, please go here: 40 Gifts of Lent

#LentChallenge

Given Freely to be Deeply Owned

Deeply Owned

Given Freely to be Deeply Owned | 40 Gifts of Lent | Gift 28

Today’s Reading:  Galatians 1 – end

May what our Master Jesus Christ gives freely be deeply and personally yours, my friends. Oh, yes! Galatians 6:18 (The Message)

I am discouraged today. I feel empty.

And so I run away. Purposefully running to the gospel of grace, owning its truth. I’m talking to myself. I’m telling myself that what Jesus Christ has given freely is reaching deep and deeper still in my soul. His gift of joy overwhelms discouragement.

Why are people usually unhappy? David Martyn Lloyd-Jones said it’s because people are listening to themselves instead of talking to themselves. I can choose to listen to whatever my thoughts are telling me–I can listen to the negative banter and feel horrible.

Or I can talk back. I can remind myself of what is true, and who I am, and who God is and what he has done.

This gift is unwrapped, there is amazing joy and is deeply owned.

Deeply Owned 2

I read a sweet devotional book today: Thoughts to Make Your Heart Sing by Sally Lloyd-Jones

About 40 Gifts of Lent 

I am anticipating the arrival of Easter and celebrating the most amazingly good gift I’ve ever received. I want to focus my heart on the fulfilled expectation of Christ’s first coming and the glorious expectation of His second coming. To continue reading, please go here: 40 Gifts of Lent

#LentChallenge
Sandra Heska King - Still Saturday

Three Things to Do When the Pain Won’t Quit

Romans 12:12

Three Things to Do When the Pain Won’t Quit

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12 (NIV)

I once wrote about the rough edges of a smooth life. I remember a chaotic and exhausted feeling from fighting a never-ending bout of nerve pain. I had to make an active choice to be joyful because choosing to be joyful while enduring serious pain is not a natural tendency for any of us. It was not easy to do. It required a lot of perseverance and clinging to hope. Not just the hope that this would end “right now!” but a deeper hope that all of this painful mess was designed for a greater good.

The more I focused on finding joy outside of myself and focusing on the presence of God, hope became a vibrant reality. This new-found hope is strengthening my patience to endure a little longer. One day at time…just a little longer, to be patient with this interruption in life named affliction.

So two of the things to do when the pain won’t stop is to be joyful in hope and patient in affliction. The third is to be faithful in prayer.

I’m not joyful and I’m not patient unless I am faithful in prayer. I don’t want to settle for mere relief when God is offering all of himself. It’s because of this relentless discomfort that I am praying more. Not just praying for myself but for family, friends, for people I haven’t met yet, for the city I live in, for the church where I worship and serve, and for the community of relationships I have across the world serving in Haiti, Togo, Mexico, the Ukraine, Thailand, the Philippines, Belarus, Indonesia, Uganda…I know there are more. This is becoming a worship experience during the very early hours of morning when the sky is still dark and everyone else is sleeping.

Three things to do…and all three are gifts from God, comforting us in our heart-of-hearts, giving us much more than better circumstances.

Be joyful in hope
Be patient in affliction
Be faithful in prayer

Romans 12:12 2

Ask the Big Question

Ask the Big Question 1

Ask the Big Question

40 Gifts of Lent | Gift 22
Reflections on Acts 24 – end

Then I heard a voice in Hebrew: “Saul, Saul, why are you out to get me? Why do you insist on going against the grain?” I said, “Who are you, Master?” The voice answered, “I am Jesus, the One you’re hunting down like an animal. But now, up on your feet—I have a job for you. I’ve handpicked you to be a servant and witness to what’s happened today, and to what I am going to show you”  Acts 26: 12 – 16 The Message

I think the biggest question I’ve ever asked God to answer is, “Who are you?” I often think I know who he is, but truthfully, I don’t know what I don’t know.

I forget to ask God, “Who are you?” when life is moving steadily by at a happy rhythm with no interruptions. It’s those “life interruptions”…those “stepping off a cliff interruptions” that shake up my thinking to ask God the big question, “Who are you?” I would like to say that I’m a brave person, able to face any challenge, but I’m actually afraid to face the unknown. The interruptions in life bring me to my knees. [1] I read once that you’ll never treat the darkness as something strange until your eyes are opened to the light. I’m asking to see more of his light. I’m asking God for his help to stop fighting against his will.

I am asking God to answer the big question…I’m asking for a life-change of deeper faith, a faith that is not just something I do with my brain (head knowledge) but the way that I live my life. Throughout life, our faith must grow. We start with a small faith, but as we live the Christian life our faith becomes stronger, enabling us to trust God more and more. [1]

Ask the big question of God and he will reveal who he is through his son, Jesus…and then you will get up and go and press on through his strength and grace.

In Christ there is grace to sustain for every need, grace to empower every deed. There is the grace to forgive all of our sins and the grace to impute to us his perfect righteousness. There is the grace to absorb the wrath of God we were due and the grace to conquer the sin and death we could not escape. There is grace to live and grace to die. There is grace to crawl and grace to fly. There is grace below and grace up high.

In Christ, there is grace to get through the stinkin’ day. And whether we do so by the skin of our teeth or bounding and leaping with joy upon joy, our souls are united to him day by day and age to age. Because his fullness does not afford a meager grace, a probationary grace, a tentative grace. For from his fullness we have all received grace upon grace. [2]

As the Big Question 2

[1] To Count it All Joy is a Real Life-Change, Donna Harris, More Grace  | [2] All of Christ for All of Life, Jared C. Wilson, The Gospel Coalition Blog

About 40 Gifts of Lent 

I am anticipating the arrival of Easter and celebrating the most amazingly good gift I’ve ever received. I want to focus my heart on the fulfilled expectation of Christ’s first coming and the glorious expectation of His second coming. To continue reading, please go here: 40 Gifts of Lent

#LentChallenge
Sandra Heska King - Still Saturday