Praying for an Open Heart

If I could only pray one prayer for the rest of my life, I would choose this prayer! Search me . . . know my heart Test me . . . know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything . . . that offends you, Lead me along the path of everlasting life. Psalm 139:23-24, NLT This prayer includes everything we need to ask God to do in order to let Him clean and transform our heart. It is a meticulous but not insensitive search for anything that stands between us and the person God would grow us to be. It tests the thoughts and preoccupations of our heart that get in the way. God will not stop until He has pointed out whatever needs to go. But the best part of the prayer is the celebration at the end w

Praying Past my Dreams

Can prayer make dreams come true? It depends on whose dreams they are! I discovered this prayer when I was single for longer than my dream had provided. I thought I had found my formula for making dreams come true. Just pray what I wanted and if my faith was big enough, my dream was waiting for the taking. But that’s not the way it works. My problem was that I forgot to add God to my dreams until after I had created them, detailed them, timed them and handed them over to God to make happen. God is not on call waiting to hear what I want so He can provide it. I had it backwards. It was this prayer that guided me through one of the most important trust lessons I have ever learned. Now glory

Praying to Finish

How do you know when your work is finished? When you’ve put in your 8 hours? When you’ve turned the project over to someone else? When you’ve met some deadline? When you’ve added your part and have nothing else to say or do? I’ve turned in enough writing projects over the years and always wondered; could I have said it better, been more concise or descriptive or clear? Was it finished just because I hit SEND and didn’t have to face it the next day? There’s a prayer for that feeling of wanting to know the relief and success of finished work. It comes from my favorite book of Philippians when Paul prayed one of his joy-prayers for his beloved friends. I am certain that God, who began the go

A Prayer for Special Mothers...

Who Have Lost a Child by death, miscarriage, or estrangement. I know something of the hole in your heart, the empty place that haunts you, especially on Mother’s Day. There is one less card, one less hug, one less chair today. It hurts. It always hurts. And while I know only too well there is nothing I can say or do to fill that hole, I would like to offer this prayer for you and ask you to pray it for me. Lord Of all birth and adoption, Of all life and death, Of all our days marked by relationship and separation; You know the hole we carry. Take us to your quiet place this day of many celebrations. Remind us of the hope we shared for the life we borrowed from you. Point out where hope gre

Praying for Roots

Plants need roots. Shallow tendrils won’t hold. Plants need aggressive, tunneling fingers that go deep and wide to support and supply nourishment. We should learn our lessons from weeds with vast networking roots and deep-boring cores that make them hard to get rid of. The prayer that takes me to rooted growth is this one: Pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power . . . to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ . Ephesians 3:17b-18 To be rooted in God is to never let the core of your life bury itself anywhere else. To be rooted in God is to know that all nourishment comes first from God and God alone. Not from success. Not from product

Praying for Discernment

How do you decide what is best? Flip a coin? Make a pro and con list? By what “feels” best? Pray about it? Of course we know the “right” answer is to pray about it. But I have listened to many people who thought they were letting prayer direct them when they were only praying their wants until they convinced themselves why they could have them. That’s not prayer. In my favorite letter from Paul to his beloved Philippians, I found the prayer that always helps me when best direction confuses me with too many choices. This is my prayer: that . . .. love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight so that [I] may be able to discern what is best. Philippians 1:9-10 It starts b