Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Forever in His Hands

Forever in His Hands--Held by His Love and Grace

Jude 24 - “Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy.”

Have you fussed and fumed through life’s challenges, wondering if the Sovereign Creator of the Universe was on vacation? I have a message for you: The God who hung the stars, the God who poured the oceans, the God who raised the mountains, the God who knew you before you were knit together in your mother’s womb, this sovereign God is your Savior. He is your King, and He is in control. When you are plucked from the depths of sin, you are placed in the very hand of God! You can’t climb up into the hand of God; you are placed into the hand of God. Hallelujah! Our efforts didn’t get us there. His grace placed us there. And His love will keep us there forever. ~Adrian Rogers

Read Psalm 139 and rejoice in the truth that God has created you and will make a way for you!


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In Everything Give Thanks

Dear Father God,

Please forgive my ungrateful spirit. So much of our world is hurting right now. So many people need Your help, and yet I can find myself complaining about the most trivial of discomforts. Thank you, Lord, for all Your many blessings, for sustaining our lives, and giving us hope. I pray that we, Your people, will reach out to our fellow man and women who need to know Your love. Please help me know how and where to help those who are hurting so desperately right now. I pray especially for all those affected by the tornadoes this week. Some have lost loved ones, many have lost homes and possessions. I pray they will not lose hope.

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pray without ceasing

"Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks;
for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you."
(1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)

I've often pondered the verse "Pray without ceasing". We know it would be physically impossible to vocalize prayers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, without ever taking a break. So we can surmise that Paul is speaking here about an attitude of prayer more than the audible language of prayer. We can also notice that in the verse preceding, Paul says we are to "rejoice evermore" and then he immediately tells us to pray without ceasing. It would seem that our attitude of prayer is the key to our ablility to be filled with a spirit of rejoicing at all times. 

Effective prayer isn't contingent upon a place or a posture. We don't have to be in the church and on our knees for our prayers to be heard. Voice isn't essential when it comes to our prayer time either. Our prayers don't have to be spoken aloud or in an eloquent manner for them to reach the ears of God.  Prayers that are whispered in the quiet are most assuredly heard by our Lord. Prayers that are uttered in seemingly inaudible sounds are heard by God. Those prayers that are merely thoughts in our minds as we worship most certainly reach the precious ears of our Savior. 

Prayer is not a formula. It's not scripted. Prayer is about our relationship with almighty God. Prayer is about our hearts engaging intimately with the heart of our Lord.  Prayer is our personal interaction with our Redeemer. It is the creation bowing to the Creator. It is pouring out all that is within us to all that He is so we can become all that He desires us to be.

Pray without ceasing. And be filled with joy unspeakable and a heart overflowing with thanksgiving.


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A lovely image

Sometimes the images in the writings of the saints are so profound and meaningful. This one from Saint Jane de Chantal is truly a lovely prayer. May God grant it to each of us!

May God make us strong in his holy love and our souls soft and supple as a glove, or like a ball of warm beeswax in his hands, to be molded as he pleases.


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Now to Him who is Able

Now to him who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages but has now been disclosed and through the prophetic writings has been made known to all nations, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith — to the only wise God be glory forevermore through Jesus Christ! [Romans 16:25-27]

Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. [Ephesians 3:20-21]

Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. [Jude 1:24-25]

All praise be to you our resurrected Lord. The grave was powerless to hold you! You are able to strengthen us. You are able to do more than we can imagine. You are able to present us blameless. To you be all glory, majesty, dominion and authority forever and ever.


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He is Alive! He has Risen as He said!

All praise to you Jesus Christ, risen Savior.  Your triumphed over death and hell.  You are the King of Kings and the Lord of lords.  Forgiveness and salvation and Yours.  You have redeemed us and made us holy in the sight of God.  Grace and peace flow from You.  In You and through You we find strength and blessing and abundant life.  Let all of heaven and earth declare Your praise as the risen Son of God, the Savior of the world."  Amen and Amen!



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Easter Prayer

Glory and praise to You, Risen Savior, for You bring light to our darkness, joy to our sorrow, and the fullness of love to our reluctant hearts. Once and for all You have conquered sin and evil. In the glory of Your Resurrection we have been set free from all that keeps us from following You.

On this Easter Day, fill our hearts with Your Light and Grace that we might joyfully echo the words of Your Holy Angels: He is not here in the tomb: He is risen! Alleluia!  Alleluia! Amen

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Growing Old

Dear Lord,
I've thought on growing old a little bit these past few months. I'm not yet quite sure how to pray about it or what to ask when that time comes, but found it interesting that I had taken a photograph of someone else's thoughts. (Click on the photo to read the piece.)
I packed the old "Ideal" magazines into a box today, the old books that Dad would pour over as he sat in his rocking chair on Saturday mornings, books full of poetry and timeless wisdom from days gone by. Please, Lord, help me know how to let all this go, how to put it all in Your hands because I'm finding it harder with each passing day.
Thank you.
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prayer is being in His presence

The quiet in the sanctuary was almost deafening.

No talking.
No sounds.
Nothing stirring.
Just a muted, tranquil silence.

I could hear my heartbeat. I could hear every breath that I drew. I could hear the inaudible.

Yet - the silence was loudly proclaiming His presence.

There was stillness. There was peace. There was the unspoken knowledge that in that soft hush, God was there. I could feel Him. I could sense His sweet Spirit.

Oh, yes. There was the definite sound of silence followed by the definite Spirit of GodHe was there.

The noiseless sanctuary echoed loudly with the presence of the Lord. I was rooted to the spot. I couldn’t move. I didn’t want to move. I was calmly basking in my sweet Savior’s love. I closed my eyes and had precious fellowship with Him.

I was engulfed in His powerful presence. He ministered to my weary soul. He ministered to my wounded heart.

I sat in the quiet. Tears streaming. Broken. Repentant. Renewed. Whole.

In the silence, I was immersed in the Word. Saturated in the Truth. Mesmerized by Him.

The deafening quiet had vocalized loudly to my spirit.

The silence had spoken.

He is here, Hallelujah.
He is here, Amen.
He is here, Holy, Holy.
I will bless His Name again.

He is here, listen closely.
Hear Him calling out your name.
He is here, you can touch Him.
You will never be the same.

Lord, thank you for your amazing presence when we fall on our faces before you in prayer and petition. Thank you for being our God, our Savior, our Healer. We love you with all that we are and give you the praise and glory and honor that is due you.


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"O God, whose dearly beloved Son was greeted by the crowd on Olivet with hallelujahs, but who is that same week was mocked as he went lonely to the Cross, forbid that our welcome to him should be in words alone.  Help us, we beg you, to keep the road open for him into our hearts; and let him find there not another crucifixion, but love and loyalty in which his kingdom may be established evermore.  Amen."
(Walter Russell Bowie 1882-1969)


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What is the proper way to pray?

So, what is the proper way to pray? Philippians 4:6-7 tells us to pray without being anxious, to pray about everything, and to pray with thankful hearts. God will answer all such prayers with the gift of His peace in our hearts. The proper way to pray is to pour out our hearts to God, being honest and open with God, as He already knows us better than we know ourselves. We are to present our requests to God, keeping in mind that God knows what is best and will not grant a request that is not His will for us. We are to express our love, gratitude, and worship to God in prayer without worrying about having just the right words to say. God is more interested in the content of our hearts than the eloquence of our words.

Recommended Resource: Prayer, The Great Adventure by David Jeremiah.

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Dear Lord,
Thank you for the sunshine on this cold day. It may be cold outside, but I can make believe it is warm.
Thank you for the little people that bring their own bit of sunshine to my house each day. Please keep watch over them. And please help A. not to fall and reinjure his fractured collarbone.
Thank you school vacation next week. I am hoping to accomplish some things that are otherwise put off.
And thank you for teaching me how important it is to be thankful each and every day. :)
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humbly we bow

Precious Father,  We humbly bow before you and give you all honor and all praise that is due you. We stand in awe of who you are. We thank you for the many amazing blessings that you so lovingly lavish upon us daily. We are so grateful for the vastness of your goodness and your mercy. You dispense such generous grace to us that it blows our minds. We worship you.

We bring our petitions before you and lay them at your feet. Lord, we ask that you cover each person and each request with your protective wing. Saturate each person in need with peace and comfort.  Wrap your mighty arms around them in a loving embrace. Minister to bodies, spirits and hearts. According to your will, bring healing and restoration.  Renew hope to those who have lost their way. Fill the down trodden with sweet encouragement. Lift downcast eyes up to focus on you and your glory. Give new direction to those seeking the right path. Enlighten those that are searching but remain in  confusion. 

We thank you for being our Lord, our Savior, our God and our King. Help us to keep our eyes on you. Help us to seek your will. Fill us with a deep longing for your Word.  May we hunger and thirst for more and may our love for you grow daily.

"Saying with a loud voice, 'Worthy is the Lamb that
was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom,
and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing"
(Revelation 5:12)


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Saying Amen to the Prayer of Christ

In the seventeenth chapter of John's gospel Jesus offers what some have called "The High Priestly Prayer". Here are a few excerpts from His prayer:
  • I am not praying for the world but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours.
  • I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me.
  • I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one.
  • I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.
  • I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.
All I can say Lord is amen. Amen, to the idea that you ever live to make intercession for us. Amen, to your words and the truth of Christ's ministry. Amen, to being kept from the evil one. Amen, to the conviction that we your children may all be one with you and each other. Amen, that your love may be in us. Amen, and thank you, for living in us.

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"Do you think, Christian, that you can measure the love of Christ?  Think of what His love has brought you ~ justification, adoption, sanctification, eternal life!  The riches of His goodness ae unsearchable!  Oh, the breathof the love of Christ!  Will such a love as this have half our hearts?  Will Jesus' marvelous lovingkindness and tender care meet with but faint response and tardy acknowledgement?  Oh my soul, tune your heart to a glad song of thanksgiving!  Go through the day rejoicing, for you are no desolate wanderer but a beloved child, watched over, cared for, supplied, and defended by your Lord."

Charles Haddon Spurgeon (1834-1892

He left the splendour of heaven

Knowing His destiny
Was the lonely hill of Golgotha
There to lay down His life for me

If that isn’t love the ocean is dry
There’s no stars in the sky
And the sparrow cannot fly!
If that isn’t love
Then heaven is a myth
There’s no feeling like this
If that isn’t love

Even in death He remembered
The thief hanging by His side;
He spoke with love and compassion
Then He took him to paradise


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A Prayer For The Sick

Lord God, our light and our hope, to you we run when our body and our soul hurts, for you are our doctor and our healer, and the comforter of those in heavy grief. You know the depths of our being and with a single word you can heal us.

Have mercy, Lord, on those afflicted by illness and infirmity, on those who cannot live their life with joy because of the evil in the flesh that's tearing them like a worm day and night. Examine each of them and pour your blessings out of your never-ending spring of love.  ~Eliza's Prayer Box

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Dear Lord,

I don't know why I find myself so forgetful on Fridays, though I did wake up today with a splitting headache and slept away half the morning and then half the afternoon as well. I am thankful that even though they turn my stomach and find me clutching my pillow for hours, I do not fear these headaches that afflict me on occasion. They are just part of who I am. I thank you for the rest I did get today, for the daughter who so lovingly looked after the little ones, and for a headache reprieve tonight so that I could go for a short walk with My Darling.

I pray, dear Lord, that You would be with those who are really hurting this night, those whose headaches are not going to go away, those who battle pain and illness on a regular basis. And, I pray that when my head throbs and my stomach threatens to turn over, that I would remember the hurting people of the world. Please show me, Father, someone who needs a bit of encouragement and tell me how I can share Your love with them.

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boldy before the Throne of grace

 "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne
of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find
grace to help in the time of need"
(Hebrews 4:16)


Father God, I come before you in awe of who you are and of the amazing privilege that we have to approach your throne boldly.  Thank you for this awesome gift you give us. Today, I bring these requests before you for all those in need and humbly lay them at your feet.

Where there is pain, apply a soothing balm. Where there is sorrow, fill them with joy. Where there is turmoil, grant them peace. Where there is confusion, give clarity. Where there is deep hurt, deliver encouragement.

Restore hope to the hopeless. Rest for the weary. Sweet comfort for the broken hearted.

To those who have lost their way, gently steer them back on the path to you. To those that are in a season of loneliness, show them that you are the friend above all friends.

To those that are sick, place your healing hand upon them. Minister deeply to hurting spirits. Strengthen the weak. Cheer up the downhearted.

Wrap those in need in your loving embrace and allow your sweet Holy Spirit  to flow freely through their bodies and do a mighty work.

Draw us all closer to you and fill us with love unimaginable.

I ask all this in the mighty and saving name of Jesus Christ our Lord.


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God, be merciful to me, a sinner!

He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and treated others with contempt: “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus:
‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get.’
But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying,
‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’
I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.” [Luke 18:9-14]

Lord, this parable speaks to me so deeply about my need for your mercy in my life. So often I pray in the attitude of the Pharisee. Help me Lord to pray like the tax collector. Cause humility to rise in my soul when I pray for myself and for others. We so need your mercy Lord. Remove the blinders of pride that prevent us from seeing that need. And fill us with your mercy and compassion for those all around us.


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One act of thanksgiving, when things go wrong with us, is worth a thousand thanks when things are agreeable to our inclinations.
~Saint John of Avila
I'm learning that all prayer should begin with Thanksgiving... giving continually thanks doesn't leave room for all the negative things that surround us.  Lord let me live a life of Thanksgiving! Amen.

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Delay is Not Denial

We get discouraged in prayer by thinking God has said no when in fact He's said nothing at all.
"Wait" is an answer. Delay is not denial. God often delays His answer to cultivate patience and persistence, and build our faith. Or to bring our will around to conform to His own. ~Sue Bohlin

Dear Lord, help us not to get discouraged in our prayer life and learn to patiently wait on You.

in Jesus' name amen.

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Dear Father God,

I pray this morning for guidance as we make decisions regarding our childhood home. I pray light for the path and a sure place to set my foot. I thank you, Father, for Your continued presence, Your never-ending love, and the continual stream of gifts that pours into my life each and every day. I am not alone. You have given helpers and counselors and You never leave me.

And, Lord Jesus, we had a terrible accident here in town yesterday morning where a young mother lost her life. Please, please be with her children and family.

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