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when our hearts are restless

Lord and King,

We come to you acknowledging how powerful you are as our Lord and King. That Your name is great among the nations and that You reign over all the earth. Yet You are also close to our hearts when we are in need, and You know every hair that is on our head.

Still, we wander, Lord Jesus. Our hearts seek to find anything that will fulfill and our hearts look to the wrong things. We look for satisfaction in our family, our jobs, money, food, and other things that make us temporarily happy. Good things that You have graciously given us. 

But our hearts are restless until they find rest in You.* Only You satisfy O Lord. Teach us to turn from all that merely makes us happy and toward what brings us ultimate joy: You.  Center our hearts on You and You alone. Keep us from being fickle, and keep us focused on You.

May our restless hearts find rest in You alone.

Amen.


*Augustine of Hippo

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JESUS, MY FRIEND


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JOHN 15:13-15  "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.  You are my friends if you do what I command.  I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business.  Instead, I have called you friends, for everything I learned from my Father I have made known to you."

O Jesus, I have no other friend like You.  In times of trial You re always there.  You always hear the unspoken longings of my heart.  You have hidden nothing from Your Father's truth.  Everything I need to know You have revealed.  You have loved me with an unsurpassable love.  You have given Your life for me, choosing by grace to call me Your friend.  Help me dearest Friend, to love as You have loved and to live as You have lived.  Help me to trust You enough to do all that You command.  I love You.  Amen.

Maranatha Worship Bible
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Amen

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Rest


“He lets me rest in green meadows……”
Psalm 23:2 (NLT)

Father with all the turmoil, anxiety and fear in the world, how sweet are the words of Jesus: Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29 (ESV)

Thank you Father that in your rest there is relief from debilitating stress, ease from depressing burdens, safety from dangerous snares, and tranquility from a chaotic world. We are as a lamb sleeping in a garden of peace. Of us it may well be said: “In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.” Psalm 4:8 (ESV)

In deed Father, “Let my soul be at rest again, for the LORD has been good to me.” Psalm 116:7 (NLT)

Thank you for this wonderful rest in Jesus name. Amen


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Our High Priest

From everlasting to everlasting, You are God, faithful and true. And because Jesus lives forever, His priesthood lasts forever. Therefore, we can come to You as He is able, once and forever, to save those who come to God through Him. He lives forever to intercede with God on our behalf. He is the kind of high priest we need because He is holy and blameless, unstained by sin. He has been set apart from sinners and has been given the highest place of honor in heaven.

So we have not received a spirit that makes us fearful slaves. Instead, we received God's Spirit when He adopted us as His own children. Now we call Him, "Abba, Father." For His Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God's children.
(Psalm 90:2b; Revelation 19:11; Hebrews 7:24-26 (NLT); Romans 8:15-16 (NLT) 

Therefore:

Arise, my soul, arise; shake off thy guilty fears;
The bleeding sacrifice in my behalf appears:
Before the throne my surety stands,
My name is written on His hands.

He ever lives above, for me to intercede;
His all redeeming love, His precious blood, to plead:
His blood atoned for all our race,
And sprinkles now the throne of grace.

Five bleeding wounds He bears; received on Calvary;
They pour effectual prayers; they strongly plead for me:
“Forgive him, O forgive,” they cry,
“Forgive him, O forgive,” they cry,
“Nor let that ransomed sinner die!”

The Father hears Him pray, His dear anointed One;
He cannot turn away, the presence of His Son;
His Spirit answers to the blood,
And tells me I am born of God.

My God is reconciled; His pardoning voice I hear;
He owns me for His child; I can no longer fear:
With confidence I now draw nigh,
  And “Father, Abba, Father,” cry. ~John Wesley 

Thank You, Lord, amen

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only you

Every day I see again that only you can teach me to pray.
Only you can set my heart at rest.
Only you can let me dwell in your presence.

No book, no concept or theory will ever bring me close to you
unless you yourself are the one who lets them become the doors to you.

But Lord, let me at least remain open to your initiative.
Let me wait patiently and attentively for the hour when you will come
and break through the walls I have erected.

Create new doors.
Teach me, O Lord, to pray

Amen
… a prayer from Henri Nouwen

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draw us close


Father,

In moments of uncertainty, it's easy for us to grow far away from You. We distance ourselves instead of growing close to You. Our anger can get in the way of seeing things clearly. Our sadness can steep us into despair. Help remind us that You are good even when things around us feel anything but good.

Draw us close to You, Lord, when we want to run. Help us to see all the ways You chase after us when we leave. Center our hearts on all that is true, pure, admirable, and right. Keep us close to You whenever when all we want to be is far away.

Please use our pain and brokenness in uncertainty to lead us to repentance and love. Hear our voices and our cries this day.

Amen

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Prayer to the Holy Spirit

Breathe in me O Holy Spirit
that my thoughts may all be holy;
Act in me O Holy Spirit
that my works, too, may be holy;
Draw my heart O Holy Spirit
that I love but what is holy;
Strengthen me O Holy Spirit
to defend that is holy;
Guard me then O Holy Spirit

Amen
Augustine of Hippo

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SEARCH ME, O GOD




 Proverbs 21:2-3
"All a mans ways seem right to him, but the Lord weighs the heart.
To do what is right and just is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice."

Dear Father, You know my heart better than I do.  Nothing is hidden from You.  For You search every heart and understand every motive behind our thoughts.  You have shown us what You require of us ~ that we act justly and love mercy and walk humbly with You.  So I pray, "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.  See if there is any offensive way in me and lead me in the way everlasting.  I love You.  Amen.

I praise Thee, Lord,
For cleansing me from sin.
Fulfill Thy Word,
And make me pure within.
Fill me with fire,
Where once I burned with shame.
Grant my desire
To magnify Thy Name.
~J. Edwin Orr 


Amen

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Friend



”Hushai the Arkite was the king's friend.”
1 Chronicles 27:33 (NIV)    

Father as I think of King David and how he was surrounded by a great variety of people who sustained him on the battle field and in city life. All played their strategic roll from servants to counselors. None were more important to him than Hushai. Father, to be singled out and distinguished as the friend of King David was not only a great honor but also an acknowledgement of his personal value to David.

We can be many things to people but to be their friend is truly special. And Father you gave Hushai to David as a gift to express your love and kindness to him. A friend who was both wise and honest. What a blessing and encouragement he must have been to David. And how great their relationship must have been, as Proverbs 17:17 says: ”A friend loves at all times….”

Father, how thankful I am for the gracious friends you have brought into my life. My wife, children, extended family, friends near and far, all incredibly important to me and without whom life would be a void too lonely to imagine. Thank you, Father, for all of my beloved friends, and especially for Jesus the friend of all who will embrace him.

Amen.


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A Prayer for the Day

"Lord, may nothing separate me from You today. Teach me how to choose only Your way today so each step will lead me closer to You. Help me walk by the Word and not my feelings. Help me to keep my heart pure and undivided. Protect me from my own careless thoughts, words, and actions. And keep me from being distracted by MY wants, MY desires, MY thoughts on how things should be. Help me to embrace what comes my way as an opportunity... rather than a personal inconvenience. And finally, help me to rest in the truth of Psalm 86:13, 'Great is your love toward me.' You already see the ways I will fall short and mess up. But right now, I consciously tuck Your whisper of absolute love for me into the deepest part of my heart. I recognize Your love for me is not based on my performance. You love me warts and all. That's amazing. But what's most amazing is that the Savior of the world would desire a few minutes with me this morning. Lord, help me to forever remember what a gift it is to sit with You like this. Amen."

~Lysa Terkeurst

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a prayer for good humor

Grant me, O Lord, good digestion, and also something to digest.

Grant me a healthy body, and the necessary good humor to maintain it.

Grant me a simple soul that knows to treasure all that is good
and that doesn’t frighten easily at the sight of evil,
but rather finds the means to put things back in their place.

Give me a soul that knows not boredom, grumblings, sighs and laments,
nor excess of stress, because of that obstructing thing called “I.”

Grant me, O Lord, a sense of good humor.

Allow me the grace to be able to take a joke to discover in life a bit of joy,
and to be able to share it with others.

Amen
… by St. Thomas More

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a prayer for storm season



Father,

Your creation is magnificent. It reflects Your glory in ways we can only imagine, and yet it is such a tiny reflection of the true magnificence of You. 

Your creation is awe-inspiring. Every Spring the earth renews and begins again. Every Summer the crops grow. Every Fall is a harvest and every Winter is a reminder to rest. As sure as the sun rises, the world creates and re-creates itself anew.

Your creation is imposing. Trees so tall that when we stand next to them, we are reminded of how small we are. The wonders of this earth as spectacular as the Grand Canyon... the fish teaming in the Great Barrier Reef... the rushing waters of Victoria Falls... are all enough to cause us to fall silent in awe and drink in the beauty and grandness of all that you have made.

Father, thank you for entrusting us to care for this earth and we humbly ask for Your help to be mindful of this responsibility. Please help us to do the honoring work of being stewards of this great earth You've created. When your thunder and lighting come, may it serve as a reminder of Your strength. When the rain replenishes the earth, may it remind us that You are the true Living Water. Guide and protect us from the many storms that will come this season. Help us to know in our heart that You are good and Your love for us is even greater.

In Christ's Name,

Amen

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Ascension

Lord Jesus, even though we might wish you had stayed here on this earth, we thank you that you ascended to the Father and promised to send the Holy Spirit to guide us and empower us to do greater things than even you did while you were here. Amen

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Mother's Day


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Father, we pray blessing and joy to all mothers today.  Many will be celebrating, many will be hurting and sad, but your grace is poured out on all.  So may mother's today feel you love and presence.  We thank you for the wonderful role of "mother" and thank You that is was Your idea.  We love You.  Amen.


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Today’s Path




Proverbs 2:6 (ESV)
    For the LORD gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding;

Father, today contains its own journey into the unknown. A path that may be similar to others yet unique in that it is yet to be traveled. So for this day’s journey and the uncertainties it holds, I pray for your wisdom, knowledge and understanding.

I ask for wisdom to discern the best choices, knowledge to inform me of the appropriate options and understanding to have the insight into what will please you most.

I realize Father that my choices not only affect me but also those I love, respect and cherish.  So, at the end of this day, may my life be an honor to you and a blessing to those it touches. And I pray Father for all who seek your guidance that they will be encouraged by your promise in Psalm 32:8 (NLT) The LORD says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.”

Thank you Father for your presence and guidance. I pray this in the Name of your beloved Son and our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.


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A prayer for the broken-hearted.

Praying that the love of God surrounds you, holds you up, strengthens you with His peace, comfort, grace, direction, and wisdom as you navigate the days to come. 

You are under the shelter of His wings and His everlasting arms hold you up. You will not stumble or fall, you are His and He is yours. God loves you. Keep your mind stayed on Him and trust in Him. Sometimes it feels you can barely hold your head above the water, but He has your hand. 

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you will overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen

Isaiah 26:3-4 (NIV) 3 You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. 4 Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD, the LORD himself, is the Rock eternal.

Psalm 147:3 (NASB)
He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds.

Isaiah 41:10 (NIV) So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

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ask ... seek ... knock ...

And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.


Whenever I read these verses I always think of how the words Ask, Seek and Knock spell out ASK when you use the first letter of each word. Here is the way that I see the progression of prayer in these verses:
  • Ask: communicates to me the simplest form of prayer. Often all that is needed is to simply request something of the Father. Many times this is a one-time occurrence that is answered in a straightforward manner.
  • Seek: this type of prayer represents more than just a request. When we seek we do not seek for an answer so much as we seek God in the answer. The answers to seeking prayers often come in a much subtler fashion.
  • Knock: the role of persistence and perseverance in prayer is represented by this word. Lets face it, no one likes to stand knocking at a door for a long period of time. Yet this is the sort of prayer that can change us the most.
The wonder in what Jesus says is that each of these prayer types always has a God response. I sometimes ponder if, when my prayer is not answered, I am asking when I should be seeking or seeking when I should be knocking.

Teach me to pray Lord. Help me to discern the type of prayer that I need to pray. Assure me that you hear me when I pray. And create a thankful heart in me.

Amen

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to know you more



Father,

It is our greatest joy to know You with our imperfect soul; 

it is powerful and joyful to look inward when all our powers and passions are engaged in pursuit of You, when our soul longs and passionately breathes after conformity to Your will; 

no hours pass away with so much pleasure as those spent with You,

How desirable, how profitable to the Christian life is a spirit of holy watchfulness and over ourselves when our souls are afraid of nothing except grieving and offending You, the blessed God, my Father and friend, whom we love and long to please, rather than be happy in ourselves! 

Knowing, as we do, that this is Your holiness living in us, which is worthy of the highest ambition, may our joy derive from glorifying You. 

We long to fill all our time for You, whether at home or in the way; to place all our concerns in Thy hands; 
to be entirely at Your disposal, 
having no will or interest of our own. 

Help me to live to and for You forever, 
to make You our last and only end, 
so that we may never more in one instance love our sinful selves.

In Your Son's holy name we pray,

Amen

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LET ME




Teach me, O God, so to use all the circumstances of my life today that they may bring forth in me the fruits of holiness rather than the fruits of sin.
LET ME use disappointment as material for patience;
LET ME use success as material for thankfulness;
LET ME use suspense as material for perseverance;
LET ME use danger as a material for courage;
LET ME use reproach as material for longsuffering;
LET ME use praise as material for humility;
LET ME use pleasure as a material for temperance;
LET ME use pains as a material for endurance.

O Lord Jesus Christ, who for the joy that was set before Thee didst endure the Cross, despising the shame, and are now set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

For many years I have read and been deeply moved by the book of John Baillie, A Diary of Private Prayer written so many years ago, in a form of English we rarely see, but always reaches deep into  my soul.  This prayer comes from one of the days of his private prayers.  Let it be our prayer too.









Amen

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A Prayer for Healing

James 5:14-15 (NLT)
     14Are any of you sick? You should call for the elders of the church to come and pray over you, anointing you with oil in the name of the Lord. 15Such a prayer offered in faith will heal the sick, and the Lord will make you well…...”


Father there are many aspects of your will that have been revealed to us in the Scriptures. But there are times when I am uncertain of your will. I know what you can do, for you have said: “Is anything too hard for the LORD?” Genesis 18:14 (NLT), but I do not always know what you will do.

So with limited knowledge, not faith, I pray for you will, in your sovereign knowledge and miraculous power, to heal a friend now lying in critical condition. His life may be in the balance, but it is secure and safe in your hands.

Father I trust your wisdom, love and mercy to intervene for him in this great hour of his need and to give peace to his family and friends as we wait for your answer. You are “…the God of all grace” 1 Peter 5:10 (NIV) and I trust You.

And, Father, not just for my friend alone, there are many others in need of healing prayer. So for them also may your healing love and power be extended according to your gracious will and perfect love.

We ask this in Jesus Name. Amen.



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2 Chronicles 7:14

Father, thank You that You are always in charge of our lives. Thank You that You have never lost control. Teach us again that You often work through a remnant. You need some who will stand in the gap for the cause of the living God. Your eye is on Your people, and You’re carrying out Your will through individuals who love You and serve You. I pray that we will know You and make a difference in the world in which we live. Give us the discipline and the courage to bear witness to You, the living God, in a world that’s lost its way. I ask this, believingly, in the name of Jesus, Amen

2 Chronicles 7:14 NLT
"If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.

Chuck Swindoll Study Bible

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prayer for perfectionists

May today there be peace within.

May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be.

May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith.

May you use those gifts that you have received,
          and pass on the love that has been given to you.

May you be content knowing you are a child of God.

Let this presence settle into your bones,
          and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love.

It is there for each and every one of us.

Amen
... a prayer of St Teresa

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nothing separates us



 Lord, may nothing separate me from You today. 
Teach me how to choose only Your way today
 so each step will lead me closer to You. 
Help me walk by the Word and not just my feelings. 
Help me to keep my heart pure and undivided. 
Protect me from my own careless thoughts, words, and actions.
And keep me from being distracted by MY wants, MY desires, 
MY thoughts on how things should be. 
Help me to embrace what comes my way as an opportunity
... rather than a personal inconvenience. 

And finally, help me to rest in the truth of Psalm 86:13, 'Great is your love toward me.' 

You already see the ways I will fall short and mess up. 
But right now, I consciously tuck Your whisper of absolute love for me
 into the deepest part of my heart. 
I recognize Your love for me is not based on my performance. 
You love me warts and all. That's amazing. 
But what's most amazing is that the Savior of the world
would desire a few minutes with me this morning. 
Lord, help me to forever remember what a gift it is to sit with You like this.


 Amen.


- Lysa Terkeurst



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