Tiny spring flowers: Sunday morning praise

spring beauty and wake robin

Bend down, O Lord, and hear my prayer;

answer me, for I need your help.

Protect me, for I am devoted to you.

Save me, for I serve you and trust you.

You are my God.

spring beauties

Be merciful, O Lord, for I am calling on you constantly.

Give me happiness, O Lord, for my life depends on you.

O Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask your aid.

Listen closely to my prayer, O Lord; hear my urgent cry.

I will call to you whenever trouble strikes, and you will answer me.

Psalm 86:1-7 NLT

 

violets

Daily Lenten devotional 3.21.16

Read:  Mark 11:22-23

path w grass

With less than a week remaining to teach his disciples, Jesus emphasized the importance of prayer, using a withered fig tree as an object lesson.  Prayer held such power for Jesus that he compared it to throwing mountains into the sea.  He challenged his disciples to pray with great confidence in God who will answer and provide.  He also exhorted them to forgive offenders who come to mind during prayer.  My takeaway from this passage is a desire to pray with more confidence, believing that I will receive what I ask for if it is God’s will.  I want to move mountains with my prayers.

Reflection:  

How can this passage strengthen your prayer life?

Being Aware: Finding God’s Plan in the Details

Recently my treadmill broke, so I have been exercising outside in the glorious autumn weather.  Years ago, my husband and I purchased acreage from a small country church, and now a county road runs between our properties.  I had never considered the church cemetery’s gravel pathway to be a walking track until my treadmill broke.  I began walking laps around the cemetery, enjoying the peaceful country setting.

Soon I became curious about the names on the headstones, and I took a break from walking for closer inspection.  On a fresh grave marked with a hanging flower basket, I bent over to read the small nameplate.  Tears filled my eyes as I recognized the name of a dear lady.  She was the mother of a friend I’ve known since kindergarten.

This godly woman, full of a zest for life, died from a long battle with cancer earlier this year.  I remembered joyful sleepovers at her house, and I recalled her quirky stories when she subbed for our elementary school teachers.  She was the “fun mom” in our class—always laughing and telling jokes, keeping our spirits high.  I have kept in touch with my friend in recent years, and I know how devastating this loss has been to her close-knit family.

I realized that by passing this gravesite on my walks, I have a visual prompt to pray for my friend and her family as they continue to grieve.  Like so many Christians, I start with good intentions to pray regularly for people in need, and then I easily forget to keep praying.  God’s plan is for me to pray over and over for this family during my walks.  If my treadmill had not broken, if I had walked the county road instead of the cemetery path, and if I had not stopped to inspect the new grave, I likely would have forgotten to keep praying for my friend.  I am thankful God strings those small, seemingly insignificant details together to direct me into service for His kingdom.

When I pay attention to the details right where I am, God often surprises me with new ways I can serve others.  What detail is God calling you to notice in your daily life, so you can join Jesus in serving others?