Totality in One

Context: A quiet day today. I made breakfast and took it back to bed, which is something I very rarely do. The morning brought the reflective verses below, whilst part of the afternoon was spent gardening in breezy sunshine under a beautiful blue sky.


God said to Moses, “I am Yahweh – ‘the LORD'”
(Exodus 6:2; NLT).

God,
Totality in One,
More dazzling than the rising sun;
No time, beginning, limit, end:
I love you.

God,
Eternity within,
No hate, or fear; no greed, or sin;
Pure love, light, fire; pure truth and peace:
I praise you.

God,
The mystery in all,
Concealed by darkness, yet you call
On me to worship, learn, and grow
Like you.

Put on your new nature, and be renewed
as you learn to know your Creator
and become like him (Colossians 3:10; NLT). 

You alone suffice

Context: After having the most astonishing, wonderful, joyful and liberating day yesterday, today’s blog just poured out as soon as I woke and started to pray this morning.

My grace suffices thee: for my power is perfected in weakness.
(2 Corinthians 12:9; LET). 

Yahweh,
You alone suffice:
My hiding-place,
My paradise;
My book, my priest,
My light, my peace –
I love you.

Yahweh,
You alone are God:
My resting-place,
My staff, my rod;
My night, my day,
My truth, my way –
I love you.

Yahweh,
You alone are good:
My dwelling-place,
My flesh, my blood;
My jubilee,
My liberty –
I love you.

Yahweh,
You alone are bliss:
My life, my death,
My longed-for kiss;
My welcome home,
My great shalom
I love you.

I love you, Lord; you are my strength.
(Psalm 18:1; NLT).


Reference

Shalom is a Hebrew word meaning peace, harmony, wholeness, completeness, prosperity, welfare and tranquility. It can refer to either peace between two entities (especially between a person and God, or between two countries), or to the well-being, welfare or safety of an individual or a group of individuals (Wikipedia).

Worship

Context

Despite a migraine, I was able to go to hospital for a stack of blood tests. Then my wonderful husband met me, and we went in the lift together: one floor up, and one floor down. This was truly the achievement of a lifetime for me, and I wept with joy afterwards.


Worship

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light (Genesis 1:1-3; NLT).
 

Yahweh,
Speaking and creating,
Caring, sharing,
Giving, taking;
Comfort when my heart
Is breaking:
You alone are God. 

Yahweh,
Never once forsaking,
No beginning,
No berating;
Joyful, loving,
Liberating:
You alone are God.  

You alone are God (Psalm 86:10; NLT). 

I’m nothing

Note

Greetings to all who see this post. Yesterday I received some negative comments about my way of addressing God in the day’s blog (I seek you: https://wp.me/p45bCr-bku).

This put me in a difficult position, because I can only express and share what God gives me, even though what I write may be rejected by some readers.

However, today I was shown a way forward which will hopefully honour us all. So from now on each prayer will be purely personal, addressed directly from my heart to God within. When appropriate, I will also briefly outline the context for some prayers.


Context of today’s prayer

Tomorrow I hope to face my most challenging fear: using a lift. I’ve been severely claustrophobic since early childhood, and have avoided lifts whenever possible throughout my life. Now that I use a rollator, stairs have become impossible, so it’s time to tackle this fear head-on. Sadly, with a migraine tonight, though, I may not be well enough to face it…

I am nothing but dust and ashes (Genesis 18:27; NIV). 

1. I’m nothing, God:
I’m small, and weak, and mortal –
Made of dust.

2. Without you
I can’t even pray,
But in your strength I trust.

3. I beg your Spirit,
Deep within,
To help me face my fears,

4. To intercede,
To sigh for me,
And, one day, dry my tears.

He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.
(Revelation 21:4; NLT).


References 

1. He knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust (Psalm 103:14; NLT. 

2. You cannot do anything without me (John 15:5; CEV).

We do not know how to pray as we ought (Romans 8:26; NRSV).

The Lord is my strength and shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me (Psalm 28:7; NIV). 

3. You have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you (1 John 2:27; NLT). 

The Spirit helps us in our weakness (Romans 8:26; NRSV).

In your strength I can crush an army; with my God I can scale any wall (2 Samuel 22:30; NLT). 

Your strength will support me (Psalm 139:9; NLT). 

I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13; NLT)..

4. That very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words (Romans 8:26; NRSV).

I seek you

You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.
(Psalm 63:1; NIV). 

1. Father God, I seek you,
Mother God, I greet you,
Mighty God, transcending all,
Your Spirit falls like dew.

2. Father, I adore you,
Mother, I implore you,
Spirit, intercede for me,
Forgive me, make me new.

3. Father, you defend me,
Mother, you befriend me,
Spirit, plead within my soul
Till I am one with you.

4. Clouds and darkness hide you,
Yet I walk beside you
In the light of your dear Son,
For Christ is shining through.

For you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture.
(Malachi 4:2; NLT). 

Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life” (John 8:12; NLT).

His face shone like the sun (Matthew 18:2; NIV).


References 

1. Transcendent power belongs to God (2 Corinthians 4:7; RSV). 

Your life-giving light will fall like dew on your people (Isaiah 26:19; NLT). 

Let my teaching fall on you like rain; let my speech settle like dew. Let my words fall like rain on tender grass, like gentle showers on young plants (Deuteronomy 32:2; NLT).

2. The Spirit, too, comes to help us in our weakness. For we don’t know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit expresses our plea with groanings too deep for words. And God, who knows everything in our hearts, knows perfectly well what the Spirit is saying, because her intercessions for God’s holy people are made according to the mind of God (Romans 26:27; TIV). 

3. Don’t you realise that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you? (1 Corinthians 3:16; NLT).

So you also are complete through your union with Christ (Colossians 2:10; NLT). 

4. Clouds and thick darkness surround him (Psalm 97:2; NIV). 

He makes darkness his secret place, around him, his dwelling place, darkness of waters, thick clouds of the skies (Psalm 18:11; LSV). 

You are a God who hides (Isaiah 45:15; CSB). 

Walk humbly with your God (Micah 6:8; NLT). 

Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God (John 20:31; NLT). 

What is prayer?

We do not know how to pray as we ought.
(Romans 8:26; NRSV).

You desire honesty from the womb (Psalm 51:6; NLT).

Prayer is sharing every thought,
Sensation, feeling, word and deed
With God.

Prayer is sharing all our weakness,
Judgement, sin and selfishness
With God.

Prayer is sharing stillness, silence,
Darkness, need and loneliness
With God.

Prayer is sharing all our joys and sorrows,
Pain, fear, life and death
With God.

Prayer is listening, trusting, loving –
Facing all we undergo
With God.

Yea, though I walk in the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me. Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
(Psalm 23:4; KJV).


References 

Pray continually (1 Thessalonians 5:17; NIV).

Pray about everything (Philippians 4:6; NLT).

Pour out your heart to him, for God is our refuge (Psalm 62:8; NLT).

Through helping (#3 of 3)

Whoever wants to be first must take last place and be the servant of everyone else (Mark 9:35; NLT). 

Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:40; NIV).

Through helping others, Lord,
We help ourselves.

Forgiving others,
We forgive ourselves.

So, we beg you,
Heal and bless

Our selfish hearts
With kindliness,

Till, loving all,
We learn to love ourselves.

Love your neighbour as yourself (Luke 1027; NLT).

If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me (Luke 9:23; NLT). 

Be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you (Ephesians 4:32; NLT). 

Through loving (#2 of 3)


You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind (Luke 10:27; NLT).

Through loving God,
We learn to love our neighbours.

Through loving them,
We learn to welcome strangers.

Through loving them,
We learn to love

Even those
Who thirst for blood,

And, loving them,
We learn to love ourselves.

Love your neighbour as yourself (Luke 1027; NLT).

When they came to a place called The Skull, they nailed him to the cross. And the criminals were also crucified – one on his right and one on his left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.”
(Luke 23:33-4; NLT).

Through judging (#1 of 3)

Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you (Luke 6:37; NLT).

You will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged (Matthew 7:2; NLT). 

Through judging others, Lord,
We judge ourselves.

Condemning others,
We condemn ourselves;

For when we criticise
And sneer,

We never stop to think,
Or fear

That, hating them,
We also hate ourselves.

You are all one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:28; NLT).

At last they will hate themselves for all their detestable sins (Ezekiel 6:9; NLT).