Context: I had to get up early to see one of my consultants yesterday, so there was no time to pray properly, or to write. Accordingly, when preparing today’s blog, I chose a piece written a couple of weeks ago:
Recently, I stayed in bed with a migraine. It was a rare, blessed day with no medical appointments.
As I was praying, the first three lines of a new poem came to me. I wrote them down immediately, and the rest quickly followed.
In less than an hour the piece was finished, leaving me full of longing and sadness, yet astonished by what I had experienced, and clinging to my sense of hope.
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).
Take me where there’s no more pain,
Or weariness, or care.
Hide me where I’ll spend each day With you, at last, in prayer.
Put me where I’ll walk and talk
With you, Lord, one in love.
Keep me where I’ll dance and sing
For joy: in heaven above.
Christ died for us so that, whether we are dead or alive when he returns, we can live with him forever (1 Thessalonians 5:10; NLT).
Reading: Psalm 35, The Inclusive Bible
Let the desert and the wilderness exult! Let the Arabah rejoice and bloom like the crocus! Let it blossom profusely, let it rejoice and sing for joy! The glory of Lebanon is bestowed on it, the splendor of Carmel and Sharon. They will see the glory of YHWH, the splendor of our God.
Strengthen all weary hands, steady all trembling knees. Say to all those of faint heart: “Take courage! Do not be afraid! Look, YHWH is coming, vindication is coming, the recompense of God – God is coming to save you!”
Then the eyes of the blind will be opened, the ears of the deaf will be unsealed. Then those who cannot walk will leap like deer and the tongues of those who cannot speak will sing for joy.
Waters will break forth in the wilderness, and there will be streams in the desert. The scorched earth will become a lake; the parched land, springs of water.
The lairs where jackals used to dwell will become thickets of reed and papyrus. And through it will run a highway, a road called the Sacred Path.
The unclean may not travel by it, but it will be for God’s people alone; and no traveler – not even fools – will go astray.
No lions will be there, nor will any fierce beast roam about it, but the redeemed will walk there – for those whom YHWH has ransomed will return.
They will enter Zion shouting for joy, with everlasting joy on their faces; joy and gladness will go with them, and sorrow and lament will flee away.
Never stop praying, especially for others (Ephesians 6:18; CEV).
Every day, when I post my blog, I pray for those who will read it, for those who will only glance at it, for those who won’t be exposed to any prayers, and for those who don’t believe in God. This can sometimes feel like a heavy task, because of my ongoing illness and fatigue, so I’m wondering if any readers might like to share it.
One way to do this would be to develop the habit of praying briefly for others just before, or after, reading each new blog.
Here is a short, lighthearted poem that could be used:
Praying for others
Bless all those who read this prayer,
And all those, Lord, who don’t.
Bless those who will pray today,
And all those, Lord, who won’t.
Bless those who can grasp your love,
And all those, Lord, who can’t.
Bless those who are seeking you, And all those, Lord, who aren’t.
Alternatively, some readers might prefer to use their own words:
Pray for those who visit this website. Ask God to bless them, and to enable them to find something here that helps them.
Pray for those who glance at the day’s prayer, but dismiss it immediately.
Pray for those who never pray, and for all who don’t believe in God. Ask him to bring back those who have strayed, and to draw many new believers to himself each day.
Whatever the approach, I would deeply appreciate any prayers said for those who visit this website, and for the countless millions who don’t.