Darkness (#2 of 2 linked prayers)

Image: wallpapertag, Yandex

If we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering
(Romans 8:17; NLT).

1. I share my darkness, Lord, with you,
The One who guides me on my way.

2. I share my emptiness with you,
The One who weeps with me today.

3. I share my anguish, Lord, with you,
The One who never leaves my side.

4. I share my loss of hope with you,
The One who suffered, bled, and died.


References

1. You have taken away my companions and my loved ones. Darkness is my closest friend (Psalm 88:18; NLT).

By this time it was about noon, and darkness fell across the whole land until three o’clock (Luke 23:44; NLT).

He guides me along the right paths (Psalm 23:3; NIV).

2. I am allotted months of emptiness, and nights of misery are apportioned to me (Job 7:3; ESV).

During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death (Hebrews 5:7; NIV).

In all their suffering he also suffered (Isaiah 63:9; NLT).

3. How long must I struggle with anguish in my soul, with sorrow in my heart every day? (Psalm 13:2; NLT).

Being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground (Luke 22:44; NIV).

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

4. Our hope is lost; we are indeed cut off (Ezekiel 37:11; ESV).

My God, my God, why have you abandoned me? (Psalm 22:1; NLT).

Jesus suffered and died outside the city gates to make his people holy by means of his own blood (Hebrews 13:12; NLT).

Truth

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

1. Jesus spoke the truth
In love –
It didn’t go down well

2. With Pharisees,
And Sadducees,
And those with stuff to sell

3. Inside the temple:
As he taught,
Each time he paused for breath,

4. The people he reproved
Rejected him,
And planned his death.


References

1. I tell you the truth, corrupt tax collectors and prostitutes will get into the Kingdom of God before you do (Matthew 21:31; NLT).

They were deeply offended and refused to believe in him (Matthew 13:57; NLT).

2. The Pharisees and Sadducees came to test Jesus, demanding that he show them a miraculous sign from heaven to prove his authority (Matthew 16:1; NLT).

My Temple will be called a house of prayer for all nations, but you have turned it into a den of thieves (Mark 11:17; NLT).

3,4. He taught daily in the Temple, but the leading priests, the teachers of religious law, and the other leaders of the people began planning how to kill him (Luke 19:47; NLT).

He came to his own people, and even they rejected him (John 1 :11; NLT).

The Jews persecuted Jesus, and sought to kill Him (John 5:16; NKJV).

Come close

Image: Ruth Kirk

Come close to God,
and God will come close to you
(James 4:8; NLT).

1. Lord,
May I come close to you
In prayer,
Trusting in your presence
And your care.

2. Lord,
May I live close to you
Each day,
Trusting in your gospel
And your way.

3. Lord,
May I draw close to you
In death,
Trusting in your love
Till my last breath.

4. Lord,
May I rest close to you
In grace,
Then I’ll know your kiss,
And see your face.


References

1. When you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private (Matthew 6:6; NLT).

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

2. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them (1 John 4:16; NIV).

Believe in the gospel (Mark 1:15; NKJV).

Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children, and walk in the way of love (Ephesians 5:2; NIV).

3. Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me (Psalm 23:4; KJV).

Then Jesus shouted, “Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands!” And with those words he breathed his last (Luke 23:46; NLT).

4. The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

Those who follow godly paths will rest in peace when they die (Isaiah 57:2; NLT).

While he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him (Luke 15:20; NIV).

Now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face (1 Corinthians 13:12; NRSV)

Foundation

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No one can lay any foundation
other than the one we already have – Jesus Christ
(1 Corinthians 3:11; NLT).

1. We have to lose our faith
For it to grow.

2. Time after time,
All that we think we know

3. Will fail,
And we will have to build again,

4. Learning from Christ’s example,
Death, and reign,

5. Until our grasp
Of all he taught matures –

6. Then, grounded in love for all,
Our faith endures.


References

1. Anyone who hears and doesn’t obey is like a person who builds a house without a foundation. When the floods sweep down against that house, it will collapse into a heap of ruins (Luke 6:49; NLT).

When your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow (James 1:3; NLT).

2. To those who listen to my teaching, more understanding will be given. But for those who are not listening, even what they think they understand will be taken away from them (Luke 8:18; NLT).

3. I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to me, strengthen your brethren (Luke 22:32; NKJV).

From the ruins I will rebuild it (Amos 9:11; NLT).

4. Learn from me (Matthew 11:29; NIV).

Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us (Ephesians 5:2; NLT).

The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David, and he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end (Luke 1:32-3; NLT).

5. [I pray] that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith [and] that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may […] know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge (Ephesians 3:17-19; RSV).

This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ (Ephesians 4:13; NLT).

6. Supplement your faith […] with love for everyone (2 Peter 1:5,7; NLT).

Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught (Colossians 2:7; NLT).

I love you

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1. I love you, Lord,
Please help me
By forgiving all my sins,

2. By healing me,
And saving me,
And giving my soul wings.

3. I love you, Lord,
Please help me
By redeeming me from death,

4. And crowning me
With mercy, Lord,
Beyond my final breath.


References

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

He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy (Psalm 28:7; NLT).

He forgives all my sins, and heals all my diseases. He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies. He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle’s! (Psalm 103:2-5; NLT).

2. Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners (1 Timothy 1:15; NLT).

Those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles (Isaiah 40:31; NLT).

3. God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave (Psalm 49:15; NKJV).

4. The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

Firestorm

God is great (Psalm 70:4; NLT).

1. God is great:
His firestorm
Consumes our hatred, rage, and scorn.

2. God is strong:
His blinding light
Dazzles our weak, human sight.

3. God is good:
His perfect peace
Brings us joy that will not cease.

4. God is wise:
His sacred truth
Kindles insight from our youth.

5. God is kind:
His endless love
Flows from heaven, in Christ’s blood.

6. God is close:
His still, small voice
Helps us with each painful choice.

7. God is here:
His gentle breath
Sustains us all from birth to death.


References

1. God is a consuming fire (Deuteronomy 4:24; NIV). 

2. God is light (1 John 1:5; NIV).


3. The Lord is peace (Judges 6:24; NLT).

4. The Spirit is truth (1 John 5:6; NKJV).

5. God is love (1 John 4:16; NIV).

6. Call on him now while he is near (Isaiah 55:6; NLT).

7. God is with us (Matthew 1:23; NLT).

Presence

The Lord is in this place, and I wasn’t even aware of it
(Genesis 28:16; NLT).

1. God is present in all things:
In joy and pain,
In loss, and gain;
In smiles and tears,
In plans, and fears.

2. God is present in all things:
In earth and sky,
In land, and sea;
In life and death,
In you, and me.


References

1. There is […] one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all (Ephesians 4:5-6; NLT).

In all their suffering he also suffered (Isaiah 63:9; NLT).

2. “Am I not everywhere in all the heavens and earth?” says the Lord (Jeremiah 23:4; NLT).

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

You are the temple of the living God (2 Corinthians 6:16; NLT).

“Self”


In him we live and move and have our being
(Acts 17:28; NIV).

1. Help me, Lord, to seek
My inner “self” –
The hidden light
That always guides my way.

2. Help me to discern
My shadow “self” –
The honest truth
That talks with me each day.

3. Help me to explore
My silent “self” –
The secret peace
That brings me such great joy.

4. Help me to accept
My inmost “self” –
The healing love
That nothing can destroy.

5. Help me, then, to shed
My fragile “self” –
It’s only an illusion, Lord,
A breath,

6. For I am one with you,
And you with me –
So nothing will remain of “self”
In death.


References

1. You will find him if you seek him with all your heart and with all soul (Deuteronomy 4:29; NIV).

God is light (1 John 1:5; NIV).

2. You will know the truth and the truth will set you free (John 8:32; NLT).

The Spirit is truth (1 John 5:6; NKJV).


3. You will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand (Philippians 4:7; NLT).

The Lord is peace (Judges 6:24; NLT).

4. Three things will last forever – faith, hope, and love – and the greatest of these is love (1 Corinthians 13:13; NLT).

God is love (1 John 4:16; NIV).

5. We ourselves are like fragile clay jars (2 Corinthians 4:7; NLT).

Common people are only a vapour; important people, an illusion (Psalm 62:9; CSB).

They will fade like a dream and not be found (Job 20:8; NLT).

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

There is […] one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all (Ephesians 4:5-6; NLT).

The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

We are sinners

Father,

1. We are sinners –
Please forgive us.
Wash away our guilt
And make us whole.

2. Speak to us,
And help us all to listen.
Heal us, Lord,
In body, mind, and soul.

3. We forgive all those
Who sin against us,
Praying for our enemies
And friends.

4. Help us to bear our cross,
And follow Jesus
Through good and ill, Lord God,
Until life ends.


References

1. We are constant sinners (Isaiah 64:5; NLT).

Forgive us our sins (Luke 11:4; NLT).

Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin (Psalm 51:2; NLT).

2. Let me hear your voice (Song of Songs 2:14; NIV).

O Lord, if you heal me, I will be truly healed (Jeremiah 17:14; NLT).

3. We forgive those who sin against us (Luke 11:4; NLT).

Love your enemies! (Matthew 5:44; NLT).

Pray for those who hurt you (Luke 6:27; NLT).

4. If you do not carry your own cross and follow me, you cannot be my disciple (Luke 14:27; NLT).

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

Final tide


Into your hands I commit my spirit (Psalm 31:5; NIV).

Father,

1. When my final tide
Has ebbed,

2. My soul, set free,
Will skim across the waves

3. To reunite with you
For evermore,

4. In primal bliss,
On some uncharted shore.


References

1. All our days ebb away (Psalm 90:9; CSB).

2. Free my soul (Psalm 6:4; DBY).

3. The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

We can live with him forever (1 Thessalonians 5:10; NLT).

4. Your joy will be complete (John 16:24; NIV).

I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb (Jeremiah 1:5; NLT).