Category Archives: Prayer

I met with my best friends yesterday. I have been unwilling to let go of resentment. As a result I have suffered spiritually. The wonderful thing about close Christian friends is that they can admonish with love. I needed that yesterday, and as they quietly challenged me about something unwise, I felt convicted. We meet in a coffee shop and then go and pray in the car. This is our pattern. As we walked to the car we were reflecting on psalm 23. Our shepherd King makes us lie down in green pastures and even uses his rod to enable us to do it. For me, this picture is so wonderful. God disciplines us. We see hurt and cruelty in it, and yet if we saw it from God’s perspective he is driving us from brown parched land, to lush green pastures, where the quiet waters are.


So as we got in the car, we all prayed that we would love those we don’t want to love, and that they would be made to lie down in green pastures. Since this prayer, my whole mindset has changed. Joy has returned to my soul. God is leading us beside the still waters and yet  for God to do it, it often causes us pain because just like stupid sheep, we don’t understand what’s good for us. 

We have such an amazing Saviour. Such a great God. The discipline we receive enables us to lie down in green pastures. I pray that when God disciplines us in the future we will have the green pastures in view, and thank God for the discipline and not rebel against it. 

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Philippians 4:11-13

“I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”

My life has plateaued, and the adrenalin that was frantically pumping in every direction has finally halted. Being in a constant state of high alert is finally over, and I am faced with my new life which I didn’t choose. I have struggled to find contentment with my life as it is now.

Rick Warren says:

“Contentment means my happiness is not dependent upon circumstances. Most people get caught in “when” thinking — “When I get such and such, then I’ll be happy.” ”

This morning, driving to work I  prayed for contentment. I also acknowledged that I didn’t want to pray this prayer, and I needed God to work In my life to enable me to mean the words that I was saying.  This took energy  and effort  because I was asking God to make me content with something I was discontent with.  Its hard to ask God for true contentment if  we don’t feel proactive about changing our attitudes.

Paul says in Philippians 4:11 that  He had to learn to be content. It wasn’t something that came to him naturally.  I’m sure he didn’t want to be in dire need or in prison or shipwrecked or hungry. Yet paul experienced all these things and through it, learned contentment.

I know my heart is rebellious and I know how wrong I am. I am struggling and grappling and trying to work through finding contentment in this situation I am now in. The key is loving God more and wanting every situation we find ourselves in, good  or bad to please God.

This is my prayer for today:

Lord,
I am discontent about many things in my life.  There is an unwillingness to accept the here and now. I am discontent over all I have lost. Forgive me for my rebellious heart that is so slow and reluctant to ask for contentment with the life I now have.

To know contemtement in every situation pleases you. You know best, and whatever happens in our lives, help me to trust you and understand that you are working out everything for my ultimate good. Help me to know that contentment can only come from you. It has  to be learned and applied as we look to you for help.Thank you for your willingness to forgive again and again. Thank you for Jesus who gladly gave up everything, and yet was content to submit to your will. Help me to do the same.

Amen.

I am very grateful to God for how I’ve felt this weekend. Often weekends are hard going, and conversations happen which lead me to dark places which then spoil a morning or an evening. Which ever part of the day is spoiled, it’s because I’ve allowed it. My emotions dictate my mood. 

On Saturday morning we read and prayed together as we normally do, sometimes conversations evolve which can become unhelpful as there is time to overthink and obsess. Then my feelings dictate my mood which is hard for my husband and unhelpful for me. 

This Saturday however, ended on a different note and because the end results were stark I thought it was worth writing it down.

So the past with all its hurt and pain  were candidly talked over. I felt myself sinking into a pit of despondency. For the first time ever after such a hard conversation, I suggested that we pray together, so that whatever negative emotions that were now at the forefront of my mind,  God would rule over them  and take charge of them in a way that was right and honouring to him, so that our weekend wouldn’t be spoiled. 

It’s the easiest path to obsess over past hurts, and it takes effort and will power to even have a desire to ask God to help us think and respond rightly when we are in the middle of an emotional crises. I am beginning to see that we need to be self disciplined.

It’s good to talk things through, it’s healthy and it’s right. In my situation I need to vent my fears  and my insecurities, but it’s how I deal with the end result that matters. 

God expects us to exercise self discipline. If I bring up subjects that I want to talk about, I need to have my armour on first. Prayer is pivotal.

So praying with one another about reacting rightly so that our joy and peace are not spoiled was a revelation this weekend. When our emotions control behaviour negatively, we sin. Up till now I have honestly thought that I can’t help it.

So we had a happier day ~ God is so good and kind showing us the right way to live. We may not like it at the time, but when God is listened to and obeyed, the results show  themselves. Joy replaces resentment and a calm replaces anger. 


 Godly living is a continual learning curve. God was so kind to us this weekend, and we need to be continually praying that we take his word seriously because the way we respond, even behind closed doors when no eyes are upon us, matters. 

Bend me, break me.

Through heartache and pain, God has been showing me how he changes and transforms our situations.
In order to grow us, I have realised that he needs to change us first.

This has been painful and uncomfortable, and It’s easy to resist change when our flaws are exposed. He has revealed facets of sin that I’ve never owned up to, or taken responsibility for, and he has even shown me sin in my life that I didn’t see as “sin.” This revelation is never pleasant, but needful if we want to grow and be right before God. Sometimes I have resented God for showing me my flaws, and my response has been, “Come on Lord, I’ve been through enough! Please don’t burden me any more!”

As my previous blogs have shown, there were many things in my life that have been exposed and laid bare. Today I feel many emotions, and a lot of them aren’t good ones for many reasons.

It has taken me an hour to get dressed and dry my hair, and it felt like I was climbing Mount Everest.

But like the psalmist, it’s good to remind ourselves how good and kind God is, and how he can smash through every situation that we find ourselves in if we are willing to submit to him.

As I ponder on God’s goodness, my perspectives change, and as I pray for a determination to go his way, God will give me that help as I earnestly seek him.

I have found myself singing this morning, and this is my prayer for today:

Pray without ceasing.

My life as I now know it has overwhelmed me. It has devastated me on every level and without God, I don’t know what I would have done.

I have found that my only comfort has been talking to God. He has been my only constant and my only foundation. I have found myself talking to him continually.

In 1 Thessalonians 5:17, Paul tells us to pray without ceasing. I have been unable to do anything else. I have muttered everywhere I’ve gone. When I have stopped talking to God, I have begun to sink into melancholy and despair. I have felt like a small child never taking its eyes off its mother, just in case all is lost.

At my lowest, all I have managed to mutter is “God, help me!” I have been unable to say anything more than that. It’s been so hard at times, I began to wonder if I would be able to stand under the weight of it. The feelings of isolation and bereavement have sometimes been so acute, that I have wondered if I will cope.

But, in all of this, I have found treasures that are precious. Even in the devastation of my life, I have known God to be faithful and kind all of the time. By leaning completely on God, my faith has been rooted in him and no other, which has been a help and a comfort. We are reading daily devotions on the psalms by Tim Keller. Today we read psalm 55 v 8, about David’s temptation to flee. Tim Keller says:

“But there is no shelter apart from God. We must continue to trust in him, because all other “shelters” will prove to be places of greater danger. There is no other place to go. He has the words of eternal life ( John 6:66 – 69)

When my life fell apart many friends failed, but God has stayed by my side. There is no situation too ugly for him to intervene. He is a precious and faithful God, full of mercy and abounding in love. He will never fail.

I know I can move forward with the confidence that only God can give. If God is with me, I need not fear. This is not the journey I would ever choose, but it’s the one that has been to given me, and my Heavenly Father knows best. I pray that I won’t waste this situation, but God would shape and mould me so that I become more like him.