Prayer, Fresh Start, Change

We started a series about Change in October 2015. Still working on it. Then heard the theme in the powerful sermon last week. Mulled it over all week. Bill and I are reading through Galatians and we’re reminded about the Fruit of the Spirit (“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”Galatians‬ ‭5:22-23‬). How am I going to finally master this? I know only the Lord can perform this miracle, so here’s my Fresh Start, from my morning devotional (link below it):

I pray because I can’t help myself. I pray because I’m helpless. I pray because the need flows out of me all the time – waking and sleeping. It doesn’t change God – it changes me. – CS Lewis
All relationships require communication. As any friend, parent, spouse, son or daughter knows, communication does not always come easily. It takes intentionality. Vulnerability. Understanding. It takes practice.
Communicating with our heavenly Father through prayer is a blessing, a privilege, and a gift. But it also takes practice. Over the next 3 weeks, we will examine the power and practice of prayer together as a body of believers. We will identify five types of prayer – praise, confession, petition, intercession and kingdom advancement – and look closely at instruction and examples of each in Scripture. Then, we will discuss the Who/Where/When of prayer and challenge ourselves to put what we have learned into action.
Will you join us as we search God’s Word for His truth about prayer?
“Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16, ESV)
Day 1: Prayers of Praise
Text: Psalm 8

Do you wake up praying? Giving thanks and praising Him for who He is and what He’s done?

I admit, it’s not my first conscious action. Generally, I wake with a grumble at the sounding alarm, not a prayer (except maybe for it to stop). I drag myself from the warm covers, make a promise to myself that tonight I’ll take my makeup off before bed and stumble to the kitchen to start the coffee and pull open the blinds.
And at that moment, most mornings, I gasp.

The sky is perfectly painted in layers of icy blue, pale yellow and fiery pink leading to a burst of orange. The sunrise.

He’s gifted this intentional reminder of “glory in the heavens.” This evident, majestic work of His hands.

And despite my weariness, my to-do list, my need for coffee and obvious need for grooming, I forget myself completely. It all becomes about Him. In an instant, my gasp becomes a prayer—a prayer praising His greatness.

Psalm 8 is David’s gasp at God’s majesty, though it’s far more eloquent than my smeary mascara-eyed admiring.
Yet, this is what I long for my first prayer of every day to be – a prayer of praise:
For His perfect creation (Psalm 8:3, NIV), seen in a sunrise that a million painters could never come close to replicating.
For His unfathomable love for each and every one of us (v.4, NIV), despite our grumbles and sinful ways.

For the dominion over all His creation, given to us in the garden and restored in Christ (v. 5-8, NIV), the undeserved redemption we find in His son.
Nothing could be more praiseworthy.

These prayers are not expectant, not tinged with our own self-interest, or a laundry list of problems we want rectified. These are prayers of pure praise, thanksgiving and adoration that our Father receives so gratefully, like the crayon-scrawled thank you note we get from a child. He’ll take our gift and cherish it anytime, anywhere.

Let your first prayer today be one of praise. Forget yourself completely. Share with Him your gasp at His greatness, singing a prayerful song of praise:

“Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the Earth!” (v. 9)

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3 thoughts on “Prayer, Fresh Start, Change

  1. I’m on a roll this morning, for this is the day the Lord has made! I’m participating in #Abide21. I’m a day behind but for me, this is today’s devotional l, which fits this post perfectly as it’s also a daily change I need to work on and it’s my favorite topic, as is the name of this blog: FORGIVENESS A Heart Like Jesus Ephesians 4:32
    Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
    Imperfect people dealing with imperfect people are bound to end up in calamity from time to time. We can’t help it. It just comes naturally. As perfect as we would like to think that we are, we hurt people. A lot! And they hurt us, too.
    With an enemy on the loose, that seeks to “kill, steal and destroy” (John 10:10) everything that God’s love story to humanity encompasses, it’s no wonder that the old adage “divide and conquer” is on the front page of the ol’ slippery serpent’s strategy book. He knows as well as anyone that the oldest trick in the book, the one that is sure to cause defeat, is division. It separates us from one another, and it separates us from our great God.
    God, as He always does, developed a solution long before the problem ever existed. Knowing that unforgiveness creates division, God broke through and sent His one and only Son. Motivated by His great love for us, The Divine drew battle lines to bridge the divide between He the Father and the fallen. He forgave. God’s love for us stirred Him to do the unthinkable…the immeasurable even. God extended the opportunity for forgiveness to a world that He had perfectly designed for His glory though it didn’t even hesitate to turn its back on Him—and that changed everything. Thanks to Jesus Christ—Son of the Living God, a Cross, and an empty tomb—we, the fallen, could now be forgiven.
    Quit trying to fix all of the world’s divisions and show the love of Jesus by sharing His love today.
    But God demonstrated His own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
    Thoughts for today:
-Who around you needs to know God’s love today? -Are you prepared to share that love?
-Are you ready for a divine appointment from God
    to show His love?
-Have you told those closest to you yet?
    – Pastor George Hall

  2. We just recently found your blog and we are reading your thoughts and about your faith in our Lord. Thank you for opening yourself up and sharing. We have re entered the full time life but this time we are not in our motor home but in an Oliver travel trailer. Would love to be able to communicate with you via email if that is possible. We have several things to share and also would like to ask you to pray for Gerri who is one year removed from chemo therapy after cancer was found. She is still seeing oncologist every 3 months and tests in between.
    Thank you.

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