Rest

Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows
(John 16:33; NLT).

Father,

Life is tough,
And change is hard.

Please help me to live
More restfully,

By doing only one task at a time,
Never hurrying,

And taking the pressure off everything –
Even prayer,

Until my soul finds rest, at last,
In you.


My soul finds rest in God
(Psalm 62:1; NIV).

Rest

I have suffered from Chronic Fatigue since 2005. This means that my energy is always very limited. Exhaustion often forces me to rest, regardless of what I want, or need, to do.

Until today, I have always understood ‘rest’ as time spent sitting down, or being in bed.

However, to my astonishment, God has now shown me that rest can also be a state of mind, and even a way of life.

With this approach, whether or not I am active, living restfully means noticing my sensations, thoughts, and emotions as they occur, acknowledging their reality without judgement, then sharing them simply and honestly with God.

Hopefully, this process will teach me how I need to change in order to live more restfully, so I can be at peace with myself, with God, with others, and the world. 

References

My soul finds rest in God (Palm 62:1; NIV). 

May I serve you

Image: WikiImages, Pixabay

He has planted eternity in the human heart,
but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work
from beginning to end (Ecclesiastes 3:11; NLT).

1. May I serve you
Somehow, Lord, today.
Yet, if I cannot serve,
Help me to pray;
Or, if I cannot pray,
To feel you near.

2. But, if I cannot sense you,
I’ll wait here
As patiently, and calmly
As I can,
For you are God, unchanged
Since time began.


References

1. You must worship the Lord your God and serve only him (Luke 4:8; NLT).

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

Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me (Psalm 23:4; NLT).

2. Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him (Psalm 37:7; NIV).

I have calmed and quieted myself (Psalm 131:2; NLT).

I am the Lord your God (Hosea 12:9; NKJV).

I am the Lord, and I do not change (Malachi 3:6; NLT)

Before the mountains were born, before you gave birth to the earth and the world, from beginning to end, you are God (Psalm 90:2; NLT). 

All glory, majesty, power, and authority are his before all time, and in the present, and beyond all time (Jude 1:25; NLT).

Enlightenment


The true light that enlightens everyone was coming into the world

(John 1:9; HNV).

1. Each human life brings trials
And suffering.
God gives, and takes away;
He wounds, and heals.

2. He helps us learn
From all we undergo,
Until, at last,
Enlightenment reveals

3. His purpose: change and growth
For every soul;
For as we learn to love,
We are made whole.


References

1. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows (John 16:33; NLT).

The Lord gave me what I had, and the Lord has taken it away. Praise the name of the Lord (Job 1:21; NLT).

I am the one who wounds and heals (Deuteronomy 32:39; NLT).

2. We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28; NIV).

Let us go on instead and become mature in our understanding (Hebrews 6:1; NLT).

The Lord my God will enlighten my darkness (Psalm 18:28; NKJV).

Teach us to number our days carefully so that we may develop wisdom in our hearts (Psalm 90:12; CSB).

The inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding (Job 32:8; WEB).

3. His purpose was for the nations to seek after God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him (Acts 17:27; NLT).

We will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ (Ephesians 4:15; NLT).

Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them (Romans 12:9; NLT).

I am the Lord who heals you (Exodus 15:26; NLT).

He restores my soul (Psalm 23:3; NKJV).

You are the potter


It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God
(Hebrews 10:31; NIV).

1. You are the potter,
We, your jars of clay;
Yet some prefer to think
You don’t exist.

2. You send both good and bad
To help us grow,
But we don’t want to change,
So we resist.

3. Yet, when we have to face
A crisis, Lord,
Our frailty
Is suddenly revealed.

4. At last, we see:
Our lives are in your hands;
We call your name,
And beg, Lord, to be healed.


References

1. O Lord, you are our Father. We are the clay, and you are the potter. We are all formed by your hand (Isaiah 64:8; NLT).

We […] are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure (2 Corinthians 4:7; NLT).

The fool says in his heart, “There is no God” (Psalm 14:1; NIV).

2. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows (John 16:33; NLT).

Should we accept only good from the hand of God, and never anything bad? (Job 2:10; NLT).

Don’t reject the Lord’s discipline, and don’t be upset when he corrects you. For the Lord corrects those he loves (Proverbs 3:11-12; NLT).

3. The Lord gave me what I had, and the Lord has taken it away (Job 1:21; NLT).

How frail is humanity! How short is life, how full of trouble! (Job 14:1; NLT).

4. Our lives are in his hands (Psalm 66:9; NLT).

We will call on your name (Psalm 80:18; NIV).

Heal me, Lord (Psalm 6:2; NLT).

Change

Photo: Ben_Kerckx

For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage,
so that I could gain Christ and become one with him
(Philippians 3:9; NLT).

1. May we give up our will for yours,
Dear Father;

2. May we change, growing much more like
Your Son;

3. May we be filled
With your most Holy Spirit –

4. Then we will live in you,
Becoming one.

References

1. I want your will to be done, not mine (Luke 22:42; NLT).

2. Change your hearts before the Lord (Jeremiah 4:4; NLT).

The Lord – who is the Spirit – makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image (2 Corinthians 3:18; NLT).

3. You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you (Acts 1:8; NLT).

4. All who live in love live in God, and God lives in them (1 John 4:16; NLT).

I have given them the glory you gave me, so they may be one as we are one (John 17:22; NLT).

Life

1. Life means enjoying
Good things –

2. Perhaps even taking them
For granted,

3. Then having to let go
Of what we did not want to lose.

4. It means struggling
To accept our losses,

5. And slowly learning
To be contented with our lot.

References

3. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised (Job 1:21; NIV).

4. The Lord your God is testing you to find out whether you love him with all your heart and with all your soul (Deuteronomy 13:3; NIV).

5. Be content with what you have (Hebrews 13:5; NET).

When we leave your side

1. Father, when we leave your side
And come to live on earth,
We enter time, and space, and mass,
Through pain and blood, in birth.

2. Here, we must face change and growth
Through suffering and loss;
Here, we strive to follow Christ,
By taking up our cross.

3. Here, we long to find again
The bliss we knew above;
Here, we struggle to forgive,
And slowly learn to love.

4. Help us, Lord, in our short lives,
To serve in all we do;
For then, in death, eternally,
Our souls will rest in you.

References

1. Mortals, born of woman, are of few days and full of trouble (Job 14:1; NIV).

2. 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).

3. I long for you, O God (Psalm 42:1; NLT).

4. My soul rests in God alone (Psalm 62:1; HNV).

Heaven on earth

1. Son of God, to seek and find,
We must all leave heaven behind;
Yet, dear Lord, to follow you,
We must trust in heaven, too.

2. Son of Man, to change and grow,
We must dwell in heaven below;
Yet, dear Lord, to care and bond,
We must draw on heaven beyond.

3. Holy One, to feel you near,
We must be in heaven here;
Yet, dear Lord, to practice love,
We must learn from heaven above.

4. Lamb of God, to share your bread,
We must long for heaven ahead;
Yet, dear Lord, to grasp your worth,
We must live in heaven on earth.

References

1. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me (Jeremiah 29:13; NLT).
Follow me and be my disciple (Matthew 9:9; NLT).

2. We will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ (Ephesians 4:15; NLT).
Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:40; NIV).

3. The Lord is near (Philippians 4:5; NIV).
Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them (Romans 12.9; NLT).

4. Jesus took some bread and blessed it. Then he broke it in pieces and gave it to the disciples, saying, “Take this and eat it, for this is my body” (Matthew 26:26; NLT).
Worthy is the Lamb who was slaughtered (Revelation 5:12; NLT).

Always

Always new-born in the stable;
Always safe on Mary’s knee;
Always playing and rejoicing,
Always, Lord, alive and free.

Always, Christ-child, in the temple,
Talking there with everyone;
Always rising from the river:
This is my beloved Son.

Always shining and transfigured;
Always changing those you meet;
Always saving and forgiving,
Ready to wash others’ feet.

Always calling: Come and follow;
Always teaching: Take your cross;
Always healing and restoring,
Helping those distressed by loss.

Always sharing our temptations;
Always here to calm each storm;
Always angry, always weeping,
Always breaking every norm.

Always pleading in the garden;
Always suffering, in pain;
Always dying, always rising,
Always coming, Lord, to reign.

Always living in our hearts, Lord;
Always pouring out your love;
Always caring, giving, serving —
Lord, you are our flesh and blood.

References

She gave birth to her first-born son and wrapped him in swaddling-cloths, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn (Luke 2:6-7; RSV).

They found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions (Luke 2:46; ESV).

There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light (Matthew 17:2; NIV).

Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me” (Mark 1:17; NLT).

Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil (Luke 4:1-2; NIV).

If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine (Matthew 26:39; NLT).

Christ lives within you (Romans 8:10; NLT).

This is my body given for you (Luke 22:19; NIV).

This is my blood (Matthew 27:28; NIV).

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