10.12.23: God is…

The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. He himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else (Acts 17:25-5; NIV). 

God is all-giving,
All-living, within.

God is all-braving,
All-saving from sin.

God is all-bearing,
All-caring, all worth.

God is all-being,
All-seeing on earth.

God is all-feeling,
All-healing: a dove.

God is all justice
And peace: God is love.

Anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them (1 John 4:8,16; NLT).


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

We are the temple of the living God. As God said: “I will live in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they will be my people” (2 Corinthians 6:16; NLT).

Day after day he bears our burdens; God is our salvation (Psalm 68:19; CSB).

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

He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases (Psalm 103:3; NLT).

After his baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him (Matthew 3:16; NLT).

The LORD is a God of justice (Isaiah 30:18; NIV).

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

8.11.23: You make us

You created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13; NIV).

You make us, Lord,
Watch over us,
And teach us.

You cherish us,
And make us whole.

You live in us,
You share our pain,
And help us.

You walk with us
In death,
And save each soul.

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).

He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety (Psalm 18:2; NLT).

4.10.23: Tricked

geralt: Pixabay.

Early yesterday morning, as I sleepily finished saying the Lord’s Prayer and began to pray for the people who scammed us last week, the first four lines and the shape of today’s poem struck me very forcefully.

From within, out of a person’s heart, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, lustful desires, envy, slander, pride, and foolishness. All these vile things come from within; they are what defile you (Mark 7:21-23; NLT). 

It’s better to be tricked
Than to trick others.
It’s better to be hated
Than to hate.
It’s better, Lord, to suffer
Than to lie, and cheat, and steal,
But better still to feel ashamed –
Before it’s far too late.

It’s better to be kind
Than to be angry.
It’s better to be patient
Than to rage.
It’s better to be martyred
Than to harm, abuse, or kill,
But best of all is to repent –
For You, alone, can save.

Our God is a God who saves! The Sovereign LORD rescues us from death (Psalm 68:20; NLT).


Verse 1

If your hand – even your stronger hand – causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell (Matthew 5:30; N,T).

Abraham said to him, “Son, remember that during your lifetime you had everything you wanted, and Lazarus had nothing. So now he is here being comforted, and you are in anguish. And besides, there is a great chasm separating us. No one can cross over to you from here, and no one can cross over to us from there” (Luke 16:25-6; NLT).

Verse 2

Love does no wrong to others, so love fulfills the requirements of God’s law (Romans 13:10; NLT). 

The Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-3; NLT).

From then on Jesus began to preach, “Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near” (Matthew 4:17; NLT).

Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins (Acts 2:38; NLT).

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

There is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away! (Luke 15:7; NLT).

12.8.23: Seek us

The Good Shepherd, by Theodore de Bry; Dutch: metmuseum.org.

This prayer came to me a few days ago, as I prayed before my favourite icon:

The Son of Man came to seek and save those who are lost.
(Luke 19:10; NLT). 


Seek us when we turn away
And lose our faith in you:
Please bring us gently back again
And let us start anew.

Save us when we turn aside
And stumble, slip, or fall:
Forgive us; guide us back again –
Lord, hear us when we call.

Help us when we turn from you
In rage, grief, or despair:
Encourage us to lean on you,
And trust, Lord, in your care.

They do not fear bad news;
they confidently trust the LORD to care for them.
(Psalm 112:7; NLT).


Restore us, O LORD, and bring us back to you again! (Lamentations 5:21; NLT).

If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them wanders away, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others on the hills and go out to search for the one that is lost? And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he will rejoice over it more than over the ninety-nine that didn’t wander away! (Matthew 18:12-13; NLT).

Who among you fears the LORD and listens to his servant? Who among you walks in darkness, and has no light? Let him trust in the name of the LORD; let him lean on his God (Isaiah 50:10; CSB).

They will lean on the LORD, the Holy One of Israel (Isaiah 10:20; NAB).

23.8.23. Don’t wait

Our Lady of Pentecost: commons.wikimedia.org.

Yesterday, when I touched my icon of the Holy Spirit falling on all those present at Pentecost, the first two lines of this prayer came insistently into my mind. Immediately, I wrote them down, then set about discovering where they would lead me. Within half an hour, the shape, and most of the words for today’s prayer were safely set down. The rest then followed more slowly, throughout the day.

The LORD must wait for you to come to him so he can show you his love and compassion (Isaiah 30:18; NLT). 

Don’t wait for me to grow
Before you come, Lord.
Don’t wait for me to fail
Before you save.

Don’t wait for me to pray
Before you fill me.
Don’t wait for me to plead
Before you give.

Don’t wait for me to change
Before you rescue.
Don’t wait for me to weep
Before you kiss –

For I’m a sinner, through and through,
So come, Lord God, have mercy,
And forgive.

The tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, “God, have mercy on me, a sinner” (Luke 18:13; NIV).


Let the wicked change their ways and banish the very thought of doing wrong. Let them turn to the LORD that he may have mercy on them. Yes, turn to our God, for he will forgive generously (Isaiah 55:7; NLT).

On the day of Pentecost all the believers were meeting together in one place. Suddenly, there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm, and it filled the house where they were sitting. Then, what looked like flames or tongues of fire appeared and settled on each of them. And everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-4; NLT).

19.8.23: Holy Spirit

Pexels: Pixabay.

Yesterday I woke early. Before I had even begun to say the Lord’s Prayer, the first two lines of this diary entry arrived, so I began writing it immediately. 

Now all of us can come to the Father through the same Holy Spirit because of what Christ has done for us.
(Ephesians 2:18; NLT). 

1. Holy Spirit, deep within,
Please pray for me, despite my sin.
I beg you, Lord, to help me cling
To Jesus.

2. Pray for me with heartfelt sighs.
Lord, plead on my behalf. Arise
And intercede for me, with cries
To Yahweh.

3. Holy Spirit, pray for all.
Please weep for those in need, and call
Their names, and save them when they fall:
Bring comfort.

4. Pray for us. Please don’t delay,
For you know what we need to say:
Lord, keep our feet on Jesus’ way

Jesus answered, “I am the way.”
(John 14:6; NIV).


Verse 1
*Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? (1 Corinthians 6:19; NLT).
*Cling to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days (Deuteronomy 30:20; NKJV).
*Cling to your faith in Christ (1 Timothy 1:19; NLT).

Verse 2
*The Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words (Romans 8:26; RSV).

Verse 3
*I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them (1 Timothy 2:1; NLT).
*I am writing to all who have been called by God the Father, who loves you and keeps you safe in the care of Jesus Christ (Jude 1:1; NLT).

Verse 4
*We do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself asks on our behalf with ineffable sighing (Romans 8:26; CPDV).
*Your Father already knows all your needs (Matthew 6:32; NLT).
*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 8:27; TIB).

20.7.23: Filling my soul

Pezibear: Pixabay.

I had to wake up early yesterday morning for some work to be done in my house. Whilst I was praying, these verses arrived:

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 8:26-7; TIB). 

Filling my soul,
You pray within me –
Lord, I’m your willing slave.

Pleading on my behalf
For others –
Lord, please forgive and save.

Making me weep,
With sighs and groaning –
Lord, please touch every mind,

Ending our hatred, wars
And bloodshed –
Heal us, for we are blind.

In their blind conceit, they cannot see how wicked they really are.
(Psalm 36:2; NLT). 

You will open the eyes of the blind.
(Isaiah 42:7; NLT).


🔻 I am the Lord’s slave  (Luke 1:38; HCSB).
🔻 We all have sinned against you (Jeremiah 14:20; NLT).
🔻 Sin whispers to the wicked, deep within their hearts. They have no fear of God at all. In their blind conceit, they cannot see how wicked they really are. Everything they say is crooked and deceitful. They refuse to act wisely or do good. They lie awake at night, hatching sinful plots. Their actions are never good. They make no attempt to turn from evil (Psalm 36:1-4; NLT).
🔻 He touched their eyes and said, “Because of your faith, it will happen.” Then their eyes were opened, and they could see! (Matthew 9:29-30; NLT).
🔻 Jesus told him, “I entered this world to render judgment – to give sight to the blind and to show those who think they see that they are blind” ( John 9:39; NLT).

8.7.23: I lift my hands

CoppertopsRB: Pixabay.

These verses came to me whilst I was praying early yesterday morning. I saw the structure and essence of the whole piece at once, so my only task was to put it into words.

The illustration shows a woman (who I think is probably the Virgin Mary), lifting her hands in the Orans posture. If you would like to know more about this way of praying, I’ve written an article about it, which is available on this link: https://wp.me/p45bCr-bb8.

I lift my hands toward your holy sanctuary.
(Psalm 134:2; NLT).

1. I lift my hands to you in thanks,
My eyes, in faith,
My voice, in praise.

2. I lift my mind to you in peace,
My heart, in love,
My soul, ablaze.

3. I lift my life to you in joy,
My wish: to serve you
All my days.

4. I lift my prayers in childlike trust,
Because your grace
Alone, Lord, saves.

It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!
(Ephesians 2:5; NLT).


Verse 1
– Give thanks in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:18; NIV).
– I lift my eyes to you, O God, enthroned in heaven (Psalm 123:1; NLT).
– Then Jesus said to the disciples, “Have faith in God” (Mark 11:22; NLT).
– Let everything that has breath praise the LORD (Psalm 150:6; NIV).

Verse 2
– You will live in peace (Isaiah 54:14; NLT).
– I love you, Lord; you are my strength (Psalm 18:1; NLT).
– They said to each other, “Didn’t our hearts burn within us as he talked with us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:32; NLT). 

Verse 3
– You will live in joy and peace (Isaiah 55:12; NLT).
– Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy (1 Peter 1:8; NLT).
– Serve him with all your heart and with all your soul (Joshua 22:5; NIV).
– Worship the Lord your God and serve him only (Luke 4:8; NIV). 

Verse 4
– Anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it (Luke 18:17; NLT).
– The LORD protects those of childlike faith (Psalm 116:6; NLT).
– Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me (John 14:1; NLT).
– We are all saved the same way, by the undeserved grace of the Lord Jesus (Acts 15:11; NLT).
– God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God (Ephesians 2:8; NLT).

7.7.23: I look on you

The Crucifixion
Fra Angelico, Italian, ca. 1420–23, metmuseum.org.

Today’s blog came to me swiftly as I prayed before my icon of Christ yesterday morning:

They will look on the one they pierced.
(John 19:37; NLT).

1. I look on you:
The One we pierced –
The God who died,
And rose again.

2. I look on you:
The One who heals –
Who sets us free
From sin and pain.

3. I look on you:
The One who hears –
The God who listens
To our prayers.

4. I look on you:
The One who sees –
Who saves us, helps us,
Guides, and shares.

I will be with you in trouble.
(Psalm 91:15; TIB).

Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior,
who daily bears our burdens.
(Psalm 68:19; NIV).


Verse 1
Jesus died and rose again (1 Thessalonians 4:14; RSV).

Verse 2
I am the LORD who heals you (Exodus 15:26; NLT).
He gave his life to free us from every kind of sin (Titus 2:14; NLT).
He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases (Psalm 103:3; NLT).

Verse 3
God hears (Genesis 16:11; NLT).
He listens (John 9:31; NLT).

Verse 4
You are the God who sees me (Genesis 16:13; NLT).
Our God is a God who saves (Psalm 68:20; NIV).
He helps me (Psalm 28:7; NLT).
He guides me along right paths (Psalm 23:3; NLT).
In all their suffering he also suffered (Isaiah 63:9; NLT).
Give your burdens to the LORD and he will take care of you (Psalm 55:22; NLT).