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Saturday, December 30, 2023

Good Things that Happened in 2023

 I could do this tomorrow, but I needed to do it yesterday so I'm posting it today. 

I reconnected with My Lamb over a beloved cat. I now pray for both of them and the Good Shepherd daily. I added The Flash and Maestro (?) as a bonus. 

I learned - at great expense - that my heart is healthy. I will list it as a good thing, although it is the reason I have accepted that I will live another 50 years. If losing Caleb didn't cause physical damage, I am indestructible. 

I read The Anxiety Opportunity. I spent the first 50 years mitigating loss but it can't be put off forever. I will need to keep working and trusting in Jesus at the same time my heart races and I can't catch my breath. This book is teaching me to do that. Good thing, too, because no med I've tried yet has worked. Except maybe the GABA. 

Home improvements. I had the money to do a little upkeep on Gethsemane. 

Dandelion returned to God. I don't know exactly what that means but I've made peace with it. I hope to see him again in eternity. God holds him until that happens. 

Clover joined the Turtle Household. It took far longer than I expected but it appears to have been worth it. She has helped heal the year's losses a bit.

I found seabands for nausea, which allowed me and my brothers to go sailing together for the first time in perhaps 40 years. Next time, I may even drink with them. 

I started listening to No Agenda, then Moe Factz, then Curry & the Keeper. Not only are they entertaining and informative podcasts, they indicate a reconnection with the world that I abandoned during covid. 

Yo estudio espanol otra vez. 

I starting taking small risks in the name of service. Living has to be more than work and cats. Not sure what more or how much more, but I'll keep trying. I have lots and lots of time. 

Keep the faith. 

Friday, December 29, 2023


 I listened to Moe Factz with Adam Curry, episode 96 yesterday, titled IDK, about 33 ways to fight a war. One of the higher ways was to attack in tiny, annoying skirmishes instead of full-on frontal assault. I thought of Satan. 

Yeah, big things attack sometimes but it's the daily grind of minor irritations that derail me most effectively. The nibbling of ducks. The continually tired, sore eyes with their big-ass floaters - that's what my optometrist calls them. Constantly exhausted yet unable to sleep. Eternally waiting for the next vomit attack. Sudden bouts of nausea, anxiety and pain for no external reason because that's part of The Turtle biology for this season. All of this compounded by hormones that refuse to stop churning and seek verbal release.  

Giving in to the rage doesn't help. There's no catharsis in yelling. Rage fuels rage. But there's no controlling it, either. I am constitutionally incapable of pretending I'm OK when I'm not OK. 

This has been a week of pinpricks. Of chemical washes. Of plans made and scuppered. Nothing huge. Nothing that would normally cause a moment of concern. But changes are on the horizon at work and at home and all bumps are magnified into mountains that extend for eternity in all directions. 

I always think I've figured out how to deal with this situation until life shows up and laughs at me. Then I have a choice. Flounder and splash and waste time railing at what I can't change, or do what millions of lives before me have done: keep swimming. 

I thank God that He's already forgiven what I will do next. If He hadn't, I'd be dead instead of alive to keep sinning. I thank God that change is constant and this horrible mood will change, too. Eventually. Sometimes acknowledging it makes it better; sometimes it doesn't. 

I'm sorry for everything that has and will happen, Lord. Thank You for loving me anyway. 

Keep the faith. 

Thursday, December 28, 2023

A Prayer Regarding Change

 Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who mercifully restores my soul within me. Great is Your faithfulness. 

Lord, You created change. You, the unchangeable being, made change as a gift to us. You give us the gift of growth, of learning, of adapting, of experiencing You in every iteration of our lives and experiences. 

It does not always feel like a gift. I like certainty. I like a sense of competence and familiarity. I don't like to be pushed or put out. I don't like the unknown. It sparks fear in my limbic system. Sometimes that fear is paralyzing. 

Be there for us in the uncertainty. Help us to trust You to walk with us, to walk us through whatever it is so we come out improved on the other side. We will emerge with a better understanding of Your grace and kindness and wisdom and mercy when we trust. 

Change is constant, Lord. There is no safety in life. Animals know this. They live and die hard. Short and sharp. Only humans believe it should be easy, and that is likely a memory of the Garden, where it was safe and easy. But we chose change, and You in Your wisdom and justice gave us what we asked for. Then, with mercy and grace, You stayed with us as we fight our way back into a fuller knowledge of Who You are. 

Thank You for walking with us. Thank You for not abandoning us to fear and meaninglessness. Thank You for providing a way. Thank You for giving us the gift of challenge and practice and improvement. Thank You for each new day and a new spirit within to face that day. Thank You for Your Spirit to comfort and guide as we go. 

Help us to listen. Help us to walk through and past the fear. 

In Jesus' name. 

Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Vampires and Morality

 I reread The Vampire Lestat and Queen of the Damned for maybe the 3rd time? Likely the last. Lestat was OK. I remember not liking QotD much the first or second times, but I do change over the years so I gave it one more try. 

Still don't like it. Probably for different reasons. It's too long and waaaay too long on the topic of morality. 

I know the backstory for Interview with a Vampire. It flows into Lestat. I believe most books - most good books, anyway - are therapy books: written by a person working stuff out. People who churn out blockbuster after blockbuster maybe not so much, but many authors write because they have something to say and they are good at saying it in an entertaining fashion. 

This author seems to be saying that humankind is evolving toward morality by removing all aspects of the spiritual and doing whatever they want as long as the motivation is love. "Love" is not really defined, although all the vampires seem to have it for their victims even as they rip their heads off and crush their bodies to pulp while drinking all their blood. They also all seem to want to be human again as long as they don't die. 

She paints a picture of all these atheists (although even that isn't correct because only the vampires seem to even think about gods) just getting along with each other in cities like Miami and San Francisco and doing their own thing without hurting each other anymore. The vampires discuss how the world keeps evolving into more and more loving of neighbors as religious thought is abandoned. 

Obviously a fictional world. Seems pretty clear to me thirty years after publication that removing religious thought from the marketplace leads to insanity, incivility and disorder. The world is searching for a Messiah more than ever. Focusing on presidents or world leaders instead of considering how each person can make a difference in their own tiny sphere of influence. Enough people living in the light daily would transform the world. Russell Brand has the correct idea there. 

Morality is found in God but it does have to be lived to make a difference in the world. It's not a thing that is stumbled into. Not yet. 

Keep the faith. 

Tuesday, December 26, 2023

God's Will

 I used to think God's will was an immutable, predetermined set of events that I was somehow supposed to find and follow as a testament to how well I listened to God. Yeah, it sounds like a load of crap to me, too, when I write it out. 

If it's immutable, why do I have to find it? Shouldn't I just walk into it accidentally? And doesn't that mean that whatever happens is what God meant to happen since it's all His plan? There's a major depressive episode right there. I no longer think it's that simple. One of the reasons I love Jordan Peterson is how quick he is to acknowledge the complexity of life. 

God's will is immutable in that I'm pretty sure everything has already happened. If God is outside time, then I'm in the snowglobe of the universe moving toward timelessness, but I'm also outside it already. This me just hasn't met that me yet. Doctor Who helps a bit with this kind of thinking. 

But what if God's will is a predetermined plan of multiple perfectly acceptable outcomes that all come together in the end no matter which path I choose? I'm not talking about other religions here. I'm talking about this job vs. that job, or this event vs. that event or even this spouse vs. that spouse. Not a choice between good and evil but a choice between two perfectly good choices. 

The times I most want God to tell me what to do are times when, quite frankly, the outcome feels like a big deal but may not actually make that big a difference. If it was a choice between waiting tables or porn star, I don't need a message from above. But to take my car for service today or a week from today? I don't really pray about that, but I do debate over when to take a cat to the vet, or when to take myself to the doctor. Or when to bring up an uncomfortable work topic. 

Yeah, many decisions have an impact. Can I really know which ones will destroy me and which won't? I can't know that. How many people chose to go to the Towers on a whim that day? A seemingly insignificant choice that wasn't insignificant at all.   

God's will is His ability to take what I will do and make it work for Him. I have no idea how He does it. I can't even be 100% sure that He can do it, since it's not over yet. But this is why I call Him God and not myself. He's supposed to be able to do things I can't. Like make it all mean something. 

Keep the faith. 

Monday, December 25, 2023

Merry Frelling Christmas

 In case you were wondering if I've gone through some miraculous transformation that turned me into a hyper-spiritual Mary Poppins - I haven't. I'm still me. I don't know what that means anymore but I know that the parts of me I hate the most remain fully intact. My ovaries, for example, and the frelling mood swings, and for the last 3 years, the covid nose - olfactory hallucinations of smells that don't exist, hang around for 24 hours or more, and like as not make me sick to my stomach - that accompany my ovarian nightmares. 

I hoped I was over the whole breeder thing and could settle into a post-menopausal world with its special horrors, but, no. Two libidinous coworkers scuttled those dreams and since we share the same ventilation system, I'm also back in circulation for who knows how long. One unpleasant aspect of my aging is that I now cycle through numerous hormone-charged moods instead of just irritability or sadness. I've added sleeplessness, anxiety, body aches - which doesn't really describe the depth of pain or utter lack of relief from that pain - and daily headaches that only ibuprofen can reduce, which I no longer take because some people think it's bad for my health. Because the rest of this is good for my health. 

This year, again, of course, the most wonderful time of year has coincided with the most hormonal time and I woke from a fitful sleep to fury and intense pain in every body part connected to my spine. I'm supposed to meet with family later, assuming I make it through winter road conditions that waited until today to manifest, and spend hours trying to play nice and prevent the inevitable when dealing with humans related by blood and little else. 

The cats have caught my mood and a peaceful four day stint has dissolved into spats and demented howling. Mostly from me, but they're adding what they can. 

All this will pass, but not today. Today I have some acrid, horrible smell in my nose that I can't identify and can't ignore. Today the only part of me that doesn't hurt yet is the top of my head and it's only 5 AM so that can change. Today I have to do my best to not kill, maim or firebomb any living things in the true spirit of Christmas until this unwelcome chemical wash passes. 

So Merry Frelling Christmas. May God have mercy on us all. 

Tuesday, December 19, 2023

A Prayer for My Coworkers

 Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who mercifully restores my soul within me. Great is Your faithfulness. 

Every day, we walk and work and live among people who know and people who don't know You. Every day You provide an opportunity to encourage and care for our fellow humans. Help us capitalize on that opportunity. 

For my fellow believers, strengthen our commitment to You and Your love. Allow us to channel the grace and forgiveness we receive daily. Help us reflect the Light of Christ instead of the darkness of the world. Help us support one another in our devotion to You. 

For my fellow humans who do not know You yet, change their hearts daily to become aware of their need for You. Change my heart to feel compassion instead of impatience. Give me courage to live Jesus daily at all times in all seasons. Give me eternal eyes to see Your future. 

Strengthen families. Cement spousal relationships into true partnerships of love and respect. Provide hope in a fallen world that You are present and working under the surface to change hearts and lives. Allow no pain to enter a life except that necessary to drive people into Your arms for comfort and healing. 

Protect the children as they enter a dangerous and corrupt world. Allow them innocence with strength. Give them purpose in a dark world. Be real to them, Lord, as only You can. 

Give us today our daily bread. Multiply the blessings of a generous heart. 

In Jesus' name. 

Saturday, December 16, 2023


 You know that beautiful but terrible movie Under the Tuscan Sun

TT: I finally realized I hate that movie so much because I'm Frances. Always wanting what I don't have. 

Remember when Frances is complaining to the real estate agent about all the things she wants, and later in the movie he shows her how she got everything she wanted, just not the way she wanted it? 

I've wished things were different for so long, but I never defined different. I never imagined I would outlive my goals. I never planned to live out my full 111 years.  

One of the books I read early this year was The Power of Now by Eckhardt Tolle, a student of Deepak Chopra (someone I believe suffered a psychotic break and made it work for him). Tolle's thesis is every day is a continual fresh slate. I am not bound by the person I was yesterday. That person is gone. 

One of my mantras this year is "change is constant." I cannot infuse those incredibly profound words with as much meaning as they convey. Maybe if I learned them in another language it would leave a more permanent mark on my soul. 

TT: I just got the irony in that thought. Permanent mark about constant change. 

My Dear Friend introduced me to Tuck Everlasting years ago, another thesis on the need for life to move forward. Life is not safe. Life is experience until death. After that, who knows but God? Life is supposed to be dangerous, and messy, and full of mistakes, and hard. Maybe even full of regrets. 

I find comfort in the idea that in some other multiverse, there is a "me" who made different choices, and has different regrets, and wishes her life was like mine. Bless her. I wish her well, whoever she became. Whoever she is becoming. Perhaps we'll grow toward each other as the years pass. 

Keep the faith. 

Friday, December 15, 2023

Why I Like Jordan Peterson

 I learned of Jordan Peterson this summer. I don't remember what I was reading or watching that involved him but I did a quick search, read a bit of The Book of Knowledge and watched a Rogan interview. 

He was not as represented - naturally - so I continued my investigation. He is worthy of respect in a world of increasingly useless people. I count him a lion. 

His most valuable contribution to my life so far is a non-religious argument for how to live with meaning. 

In my darkest moments, I have gone from "there is no God" to "God is an immortal sadist and there is no way out of this hell I call life." I often think of the movie Dark City with Rufus Sewell and the "crazy cop" in those times. 

But Dr. Peterson has spent his life in the search for existential truth and its practical applications. He agrees that life is bloody hard, possibly by design, and the only way to wring meaning and satisfaction from the struggle is to accept hardship as the path to truth and embrace the battle with gratitude for the opportunity. He often quotes "take up your cross and follow me" as a classic example, although I see no evidence that he believes Jesus is anything more than a Jungian manifestation of a hero arch-type. Which doesn't change the usefulness of his argument for me. 

Because, on my dark days, when I wonder if God is real, there is still a brilliant human who has drawn the conclusion that to live as if God is real by moving forward with gratitude and grit, seeking and speaking truth as I find it, provides the same benefits as anything else I might try. In this worldview, truth is God and truth is the prize that must be sought and gratitude is expressed truthfully as worship when encountered, and even if I become nothing at death, I will have lived with as much chance of happiness and fulfillment in the search as if there is a God who can provide eternal reward. 

I find great comfort in that thought. A man who at best appears agnostic has concluded that what I call a religious life has value even if ultimately it may have no meaning allows me to go on until my dark mood passes and my rational brain returns. 

Thank you, Jordan Peterson. May the God of peace and the source of truth bless you and your family in your quest. 

Keep the faith. 

Thursday, December 14, 2023

Is Anything Hard for God?

Yeah, I'm being serious. One of my main complaints about life is how hard it is. We all know this. Some accept it with more grace and gusto than others. I'm one of those who rails against the machine. The whiner. The resentful. The brat. 

Fairly obvious, I know. 

Life only gets harder. I've struggled as an adult because I don't like this reality and I keep looking for a way around it instead of through it. One of my newly acquired and oft-practiced skills is not thinking about things. My intellect is my greatest enemy in this adventure called life. Thinking hard about certain topics leads to terrible things. 

This new skill involves thinking about God's attributes instead of (fill-in-the-blank). And while I was doing that, I was wondering how an all-powerful God decided to make a world with built-in mastery requirements. I mean, a chick has a limited supply of air and energy with which to break out of its egg before it dies. A butterfly that doesn't fight its way out of the cocoon doesn't get wings that work, and dies. All animals below mammals have some kind of shedding process that requires struggle to grow. Or they die. This hardship is built-in. 

What does God know about struggle? Isn't everything easy for Him? He created the universe with a word. I can't do that. How would He know that struggling to succeed is the only way to make life worth living? 

Is His omnipotence an assumption on our part because He can do things we can't? Was there a time when He did struggle and saw the benefit in it? Does He struggle now to love us? Is it hard for Him to maintain the universe? 

I'm not trying to blaspheme, or belittle. He's God and I'm not. I'm not even questioning His wisdom. I'm wondering if He understands me better than I know because He fights the same fights I do, just on a cosmic scale. Does that make Him more glorious? 

Keep the faith. 

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

A Prayer for the Lions

Lord, thank You for the truth seekers. Thank You for the ones who want real answers in a false world. Thank You for their courage to speak and question and search and persevere in their quests. 

Thank You for the Lions. The ones who stand up and roar the truth. The ones who point out hypocrisy. The ones who will not be canceled. Who will not back down. Who will not be silenced. 

Thank You for the awakening ones. Those who are noticing. Those who wonder if there is more to be known. Those who want to spread grace instead of condemnation. 

Thank You for the prayer warriors. Warriors who fight in the spiritual realms against the real if invisible forces of darkness and chaos and fear that choke our world. 

Hear us, Lord. Bless us as we reflect Your light. Keep us humble as You are humble. Teach us to focus on You no matter the circumstances. 

Use this time of turmoil to bring more and more souls into Your glorious presence. You are the source of truth, and peace, and victory. 

In Jesus' name. 


Monday, December 11, 2023

A Prayer for the Kind Ones

Lord, be merciful to the kind ones. The ones who see a need and step up. The ones who take a risk. The ones who understand that much can be gained by the strength of the ox. 

Bless Kiya's family. 

Bless Hazel's family. 

Bless Apple's family. 

Bless Chloe's family. 

Bless Misi's family. 

Bless Molly's family. 

Provide for them each day. Give them wisdom. Give them grace. Give them Your love and patience. 

Give them the joy of relationships. Strengthen their families. Strengthen their love for You. 

Let them be an example of how much blessing You can bestow when people follow Your example of kindness. 

In Jesus' name. 

Sunday, December 10, 2023

A Limnal Space

Yesterday, a mentor introduced me to limnal space. The threshold. A space between this place and that place that must be crossed. Sometimes it is a simple step. Sometimes, it is an eternity of waiting in uncertainty. 

This would be my limnal year. 

I have spent months of 2023 in a breathless - sometimes literally air-starved - state of anxiety. I have pleaded for God's intervention, God's return, and finally for God's presence as I gasp and weep my way into some kind of daily death and resurrection. 

A limnal space. 

I don't know what tomorrow holds. I don't know what today holds. That has become quite clear to me. I have the impossible grave in The Swamp to prove it. 

I am slowly learning to box-breathe through the fear. To keep swimming. I watched Finding Nemo over and over like a three year old seeking mastery in April. I repeated Jesus telling His disciples "You can't just shut down when you are afraid." - The Chosen season 2, episode 7. 

My mantras. I don't know what today holds. God is good. God's plan is good. God is with me. 

Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who mercifully restores my soul within me. Great is Your faithfulness. 

I will wait. I will practice gratitude. I will accept the limnal space. 

Keep the faith. 

Saturday, December 9, 2023

What Is Prayer?

I've thought about this a lot in the last 12 years. I've listened to sermons, read the Bible, read some tutorials, attended and led prayer groups. 

Prayer is talking to God. That's a simple definition but I find no fault in it. As Phillipe of Ladyhawke fame says, "I talk to God all the time." And I do. Even when I was so angry I turned my back on God, I couldn't make myself stop talking to Him. 

But I don't think it's just me talking to God, even as I don't think any conversation should just be talking at someone. The goal of talking is to share information. To make a change in myself, or the other person, or both, hopefully. 

Prayer should change something. I used to think it should change circumstances, or more specifically, prompt God to change circumstances. The idea being He would change more things if only we would ask Him to. 

That can happen. I absolutely believe God can do anything, absolutely anything He wants, up to and beyond raising the dead. I also believe God will do what He thinks is best, and I no longer believe I have any idea what that is. 

I now believe, for the most part, prayer is meant to change me. The daily practice, both at set times and on the fly, is meant to put myself into a place where I can experience the wonder of God no matter what is happening. Where I can suspend judgment of immediate results and accept that God is good, and His plan is good, and that's good enough until God says it isn't. 

That sounds like I've mastered living in God's presence. I haven't. Far from it. 

I'll keep praying about it. 

Friday, December 8, 2023

Vomit: An Autobiography

Vomit is the story of my life. 

I've been told I puked breastmilk at 3 months after a one hour trip to KC. I puked after every car ride where I didn't sit in the front seat. I puked on every plane ride, one of several reasons the Turtle doesn't fly. I only stopped puking regularly when I started driving myself. 

I suffer acute motion sickness. Actually diagnosed by medical professionals at 15, who wanted to put me on some kind of medication my mother refused because it was dangerous. Like a statin-blocker for the brain. I didn't need it because an adult in America can control what vehicle she takes and who gets to spin her around and what rocking chairs she sits in. I coped. 

Then I got furbabies. And the vomit continues. 

My Number One Son projectile vomits. For 16 years I've dealt with four foot sprays of regurge when he eats too fast, eats the wrong thing, when Mercury is in retrograde, when the dog eye-balls him sideways. 

His sister has chronic pancreatitis. From her, every couple of months, we endure bouts of vomiting that last for hours, long after her stomach is empty. She goes into quarantine. Nothing she can swallow for... we're up to 8 hours to be sure we don't restart the cycle. No warning. No pattern. Just one day after eating - uch uch uch blech! For hours. 

The funny part is she vomits other times, too, that are over and done. Blech. Move on. It's a crapshoot. Or vomitshoot. The Fits happen most when it's inconvenient, like 6 minutes before I have to go to work, or right before bed. 

I've cleaned at least as much vomit in my adult life as I produced in my childhood, and there's really no end in sight. Should I live another 50 years - and at this time I've accepted that I will - I have vomit to anticipate. 

I suppose the good news is, thanks to Covid nose, I don't smell it like I used to. 

Keep the faith. 

Thursday, December 7, 2023

The Anxiety Opportunity by Curtis Chang

Miss Mercy saw a copy of this book in my van recently and asked "Is anxiety really an opportunity?" 

Turns out, it is. 

After suffering three extended bouts of anxiety and panic attacks since fall of 2018, I tried and rejected two anti-anxiety meds in one year because of side effects. Talk about panic attacks. Modern medicine can't help me and I can't help myself. Then I heard Curtis being interviewed - on Point of View with Kerby Anderson, I believe - about this book that published in May 2023. 

First important lesson for me: fear is normal. It is a thing that happens. A limbic response is out of my conscious control. It is possible for fear to be triggered out of context, and most of us would agree that the last 3 years at least have been some of the most triggering times in recent history, but it is not wrong or sinful to feel afraid. 

Second important lesson and in many ways the crux of the book: fear should propel me toward Jesus. That is the appropriate response to the fear trigger when another response is not obvious (such as, run away from the grizzly that has reared up to kill you). Most of the time, an angry grizzly is not the fear trigger. 

Jesus isn't mad at me for feeling afraid. He had bouts of fear, too. He took them to His father. I'm supposed to take them to Him. It's one of the reasons they exist.

There's more in the book, of course, and there's more to how I'm learning to cope with fear in 2023, but that's enough for now. 

A final lesson: fear will not end until Heaven. Accepting this, accepting that Jesus will be with me no matter how I feel moment to moment, is an important step in recovery. Acceptance is my word of the year. 

Keep the faith. 

Tuesday, December 5, 2023

One Day at a Time

I should know by now, after almost 4 years in recovery (12.16.2019), that worry and depression come when I "think ahead" or "think behind." 

Much of my recovery practice this year focuses on The Now. My child-self thinks "The Now of Wolf Thought" from Elfquest. The art of being in and experiencing only this moment. Worry comes from anticipating future problems. Depression comes from dwelling on past grief. I've wasted far too much of my life in a future I can't control and a past I can't change. It's time to be here now. 

I will experience today. I will be grateful for the obvious good (hot showers, clean clothes, edible food, humans I can help and encourage, family who love me) and I will be grateful for the good to be revealed at a later date (plot twists like sick cats, sick friends or home maintenance issues). 

Joe Rogan believes life is just a series of experiences. The more varied, the more interesting, the better. Why are we here if not to try new things, fail and learn, and try again? 

I've never felt the call of adventure, but 2023 has convinced me I need more in my life than work and cats. Maybe not a lot more, but more. 

I need service. Service to others. More than just a kind word on the phone, although sometimes being kind to one person is the hardest thing I do all day. 

I am always tired by day's end. I can be tired knowing I tried to be better today than yesterday, or I can be tired knowing I was a grade A snapping turtle. Only one of those choices gives me a chance at some restful sleep. And it is easier to Be Here Now when my goal is to serve the one in my line of sight instead of the one in the mirror. 

Lord, keep me in this moment, until You bring me home for eternity. Thank You for being Here Now with me. 

Monday, December 4, 2023

A Prayer for Healed Hearts

Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who mercifully restores my soul within me. Great is Your faithfulness. 

Lord, heal our hearts. 

Heal us of past hurt, trauma, wickedness, pain, loss and fear. Be present with us in those memories and nightmares and help us to give them to You and receive healing in return. 

Thank You that yesterday is over. We ask forgiveness for our past mistakes, but we know only You can turn them into paths for eternal blessing. 

Thank You that the person I was yesterday is dead. I am a new person every morning. I can learn from my past, but I am not chained to it. You give me a fresh page every day. I can make different choices. I can praise You in the pain. I can seek You when I am afraid. I can trust that You will make all things right if I surrender to Your will. 

Thank You that nothing I do or fail to do can disrupt Your plan for eternity. You've already taken it all into account. 

Heal our hearts, Lord, spiritually and physically. 

For all those who are in the midst of physical heart issues - and there are many - I ask Your provision and healing. But above all, Lord, give us Your heart for the world. Let us shed the skin of past pain and move forward into the next glorious day of service until You take us home forever. 

In Jesus' name, 


Sunday, December 3, 2023

A Prayer for Hope

Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who mercifully restores my soul within me. Great is Your faithfulness. 

Lord, change my heart to see what You see, to want what You want, and to do what You tell me to do, either through Your written word or the leading of Your Spirit. 

Show me a vision of eternity where you make all sad things untrue. 

Teach me to keep Your perfection and sovereignty firmly in mind no matter what I am shown by sources less reliable than You. 

Teach me to focus on You and not my surroundings. Teach me this is what real worship is. 

Teach me to put feet to my faith through hope in Your promises of salvation, perfection and peace. 

Teach me to trust Your goodness in all things. I only know good exists because You made me to want it. If there was no good, I would never be dissatisfied with my life circumstances or anyone else's. I would never think "That's not good." 

Be first in my heart all my days. 

Teach me to be grateful for every situation as a way to draw closer to You. 

In Jesus' name, 


Saturday, December 2, 2023

A Prayer for Peace for Our World

Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, who is the source of all peace. Great is Your faithfulness. 

Lord, You are the source of all love. You are the creator of Heaven and Earth and all they contain. You want your creation to exist in harmony, not hatred. 

Change the hearts of Your people, to seek Your will day by day, moment by moment. To look for the ways You show love to us. To look for ways to pass that love and grace to others. Change our hearts to want what You want. Change our attitudes from despair to hope in You. Awaken Your holy fire within us to see the small ways we can make a difference - a smile, an encouraging word, a shared prayer. 

Unify Your church. Help us to see the obvious ways we are similar, and focus on those, celebrating the ways we are different as proof of Your endless creativity and grace. 

Change our hearts first, so that those who do not know You may see a real difference in us, and be drawn, not to us as humans, but to You as the God we love and worship. 

Peace can only come through hearts set on fire by the love of Jesus Christ. Change our hearts to know that love more and more. 

Help us to grant forgiveness to each other as You have forgiven us. 

Grace received; grace extended. 

May all be done according to Your will. 

In Jesus' name,