11.1.23: My eyes are closed


As I woke two days ago, I began to pray without words. My eyes were still closed, and I found that I was exploring the darkness of my mind. After a time, the first words for today’s prayer arrived, so I wrote them down, then returned to my silence. And, as often happens, the rest slowly followed:

Live a life filled with love (Ephesians 5:2; NLT). 

My eyes are closed,
And I can see the darkness
Of my mind.

Lord,
Show me every corner here
That isn’t filled with love:
Please shine your light.

Keeping them shut,
I move into the darkness
Of my heart.

Lord,
Show me every corner here
That isn’t filled with love:

Please speak the truth.

With eyes still closed,
I stumble through the darkness
Of my soul.

Lord,
Show me every corner here
That isn’t filled with love:

Please save my soul!

Save my soul (Psalm 22:20; NASB20). 


References 

God is light (1 John 1:5; NLT). 

Give light to my eyes (Psalm 13:3; NIV).

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it (John 1:5; NLT).

Make your face shine upon Your servant (Psalm 31:16; NKJV).

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

When the Spirit of truth comes, she will guide you into all truth (John 16:13; TIB).

Return, O Lord, deliver my soul: oh save me for thy mercies’ sake (Psalm 6:4; KJV).

The LORD is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety (Psalm 18:2; NLT).


The Rosary Hospital

Yesterday, to my delight, I received the little wooden cross-shaped beads I ordered not long ago. These will serve as the “Our Father” beads on some of my rosaries.

Although the first rosary including them isn’t quite finished, here is a photo to show how these new beads will look. The idea is that they will mark the end of each decade is a very clear and tactile way. Hopefully, this will be particularly helpful for people who have difficulties with their sight, or their sense of touch.

31.12.22: Lord, save us! (with thanks for the safe crossing of C.O.)

Context: Yesterday I woke to the sound of a roaring sea, knowing that my friend was crossing to the island at that time. As I prayed for him, today’s blog burst into my mind. It is my prayer for all people in 2023:

It is what comes from inside that defiles you. For 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 (Mark 7:20-23; NLT). 

Lord,

Please calm
Our raging storm
Of greed, and hate,
And war.

Heal every mind,
And heart, and soul –
Lord, save us!
I implore.

Change us,
As you changed Saint Paul,
For we, too, hate, oppress,
And kill.

In every mind,
And heart, and soul
Please whisper:
Peace, be still.

Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was a great calm (Mark 4:39; NKJV).


References 

Then His disciples came to Him and awoke Him, saying, “Lord, save us! We are perishing!” (Matthew 8:25; NKJV).

Saul was uttering threats with every breath and was eager to kill the Lord’s followers. …As he was approaching Damascus on this mission, a light from heaven suddenly shone down around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul! Saul! Why are you persecuting me?” “Who are you, lord?” Saul asked. And the voice replied, “I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting. Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do” (Acts 9:1;3-6; NLT). 

“Go out and stand before me on the mountain,” the LORD told him. And as Elijah stood there, the LORD passed by, and a mighty windstorm hit the mountain. It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper (1 Kings 19:11-12; NLT).

What I tell you now in the darkness, shout abroad when daybreak comes. What I whisper in your ear, shout from the housetops for all to hear! (Matthew 10:27; NLT).


The Rosary Hospital 

Yesterday, to my great joy, I received a package of beads and special Fiat rosary centrepieces, which I ordered several weeks ago from America. Having tracked their long journey, including the surprising information that delivery had been unsuccessfully attempted at 7am on Christmas morning, I was delighted to lay hands on them. In the evening I celebrated their arrival by making the first section of a Fiat rosary:

25.12.22: Christmas Day

Context: God often gives me a special prayer well in advance, ready to post on Christmas Day, but this year it didn’t happen. In fact, I had begun to think there would be no Christmas prayer at all this year. To begin with, I felt I should be able to write something appropriate, but I knew I couldn’t do this without inspiration, so eventually I placed the matter in God’s hands, and let it go.

Then, on the 21st of December, I received a long Christmas prayer, which was very difficult to put into words, to condense, and to edit. Eventually it took the form of a spoken exchange. The first section pictures Christ speaking to us, whilst the second pictures us responding to him.

✝️ She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them (Luke 2:7; NLT). 

I was born in the shadow of want,
And lived in the shadow of fear.

I worked in the shadow of hate,
But knew that my Father was near.

I wept in the shadow of grief,
And prayed in the shadow of pain.

I walked in the shadow of death,
Then rose, to save all, and to reign.

The world has now become the Kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign forever and ever (Revelation 11:15; NLT).


✝️ We all have sinned against you (Jeremiah 14:20; NLT). 

Though we dwell in the shadow of sin,
And grieve in the shadow of loss,

We pray, and give thanks, and rejoice,
For we follow your way of the cross.

Though we walk in the shadow of death,
We trust in your staff and your rod.

Lord, you are here, in earth’s darkness,
So we sing in the shadow of God.

Because you are my helper, I sing for joy in the shadow of your wings (Psalm 63:7; NLT).


Christmas greetings:

My very best wishes to every reader who visits this website. May God bless you. I pray for you all every day.

✝️  With love, and many thanks for your support, from Ruth xxxxxxx

15.12.22: That’s easy

Context: I wrote this poem quite a while ago, after experiencing a series of shattering realisations during prayer. Yesterday I rediscovered it amongst my drafts, and decided to post it today:

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

The Father himself loves you dearly (John 16:27; NLT). 

I love you, Lord – that’s easy!
But: You love me, too – that’s hard!

Why do you love me, Yahweh?
Why do you guide and guard? 

You know my every weakness,
And my sins are all too real,

So why do you help and comfort me?
Why do you cleanse and heal? 

Ah! It’s because you’re perfect, Lord,
Pouring out love and peace,

And sending your Son to make us all one:
Your mercy will never cease.  

His mercy endures forever (1 Chronicles 16:34; NKJV).

16.11.22: I believe in Jesus

Context: Both my husband and I have covid, so I’m not able to write at present. However, here is a prayer which arrived a short time ago. I chose it because it seemed to follow on from yesterday’s (https://wp.me/p45bCr-cKC):

Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying” (John 11:25; NLT).

I believe in Jesus,
For he is all I need:
He heals my mind,
Forgives my sins,
And hears me when I plead.

I believe in Jesus,
For he is all I seek:
He heals my heart,
Redeems my life,
And helps me when I’m weak.

I believe in Jesus,
For he alone can save:
He heals my soul,
And cares for me –
His humble, willing slave.

Whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of everyone else (Mark 10:44; NLT).

Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:4o; CSB). 

24.10.22: My flesh is weak

Context: Today I’m in London again, for further specialised hospital tests. These trips are a big challenge, because of my limited mobility and chronic fatigue. There’s something good to look forward to, though, as I’ve sent for all the basics I need to start learning the craft of making rosaries. If there’s any news worth reporting, I’ll include it when the time comes.

Following the prayers posted here for the last two days, today’s strikes a more optimistic note. It continues to build on the recent, recurring theme of inner healing:

The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak (Matthew 26:41; NIV). 

My flesh is weak,
My mind is scarred,

My heart is crushed,
My soul, afraid; 

And yet, my spirit
Leaps with joy

Because you love me:
Lord, I’m saved!

God’s love toward us is great, God’s faithfulness, eternal (Psalm 117:2; TIB).

You are the God who saves me (Psalm 25:5; NLT).


References 

He knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust (Psalm 104:14; NLT). .

I am exhausted and completely crushed. My groans come from an anguished heart (Psalm 38:8; NLT).

Yahweh is near to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit (Psalm 34:18; LSB).

Fear came upon every soul (Acts 2:43; RSV). 

How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior! (Luke 1L47; NLT). 

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). 

God already loves you, because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God (John 16:27; TIB).

God’s love toward us is great, God’s faithfulness, eternal (Psalm 117:2; TIB).

Everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved (Joel 2:32; NLT).

Jesus

Context: As soon as I woke up in my own familiar bedroom yesterday morning, I received today’s prayer with an indescribable sense of peace, gratitude and joy:

I am with you at all times, even to the end of the world.
(Matthew 28:20; HNT). 

Jesus Christ is here today,
Tomorrow and for evermore,

Bringing liberty for captives,
Giving good news to the poor;

Forgiving sins and healing blindness,
Setting free the long-oppressed, 

Crowning us with love and mercy,
Saving all from sin and death.

Thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death
through our Lord Jesus Christ.
(1 Corinthians 15:57; NLT).


References

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8; NLT).

The Spirit of the LORD is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the LORD’s favor has come (Luke 4:18-19; 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 (Psalm 103:3-5; NLT). 

Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us (Colossians 3:11; NLT). 

Thine, the kingdom

Context: I woke at 6am, began to pray, and immediately had to catch hold of today’s prayer. To my delight, it flowed easily, and wasn’t too exhausting to write. After that I slept and woke, slept and woke, until 10am.

My first morning in Ely meant buying some food at the outdoor market. Life here in the Fens is very different from my quiet days on the island. There were hundreds of people crowding around the stalls, talking, laughing, eating and shopping, ready to help strangers and to chat. One lovely man even told me his life-story.

By the time I got back to my flat for lunch and a rest, I was quite shaky, completely overwhelmed by all the sounds, sights, smells and colours of creation so lavishly displayed in this busy, lively town. This fitted with a theme seems to be emerging from my trip: “I will make all my goodness pass before you” (Exodus 33:19; NLT), as illustrated by today’s blog:

Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever.
(Matthew 6:13; KJV). 

God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God,
and God in them (1 John 4:16; TIV). 

Thine, the kingdom,
Thine, the power,
Thine, the glory,
Thine, the love,

Thine, the mercy,
Thine, the giving,
Thine, the saving:
God above.

Mine, the weakness,
Mine, the failure;
Mine, the darkness,
Mine, the sin,

Mine, the longing,
Mine, the searching,
Mine, the finding:
God within.

You will seek me and find me,
when you search for me with all your heart.
(Jeremiah 29:13; NKJV). 

You are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people.”
(2 Corinthians 6:16; NKJV). 

Save us!

Lord, save us! (Matthew 8:25; NLT). 

Save us, Lord! We live in thrall
To evil: please forgive us all.

Change each foolish human mind:
Lend us patience; make us kind.

Melt our hearts, Lord God, above:
Give us grace, so we may love.

Heal each fragile, human soul
And grant us wisdom: make us whole.

Give me wisdom (2 Chronicles 1:10; NIV). 

His hands make whole (Job 5:18; KJV).

 


Save us!

Lord, save us! (Matthew 8:25; NLT). 

1. Jesus,
Save us from ourselves,
For we are ignorant and weak.
The last thing we remember, Lord, is:
Blessed are the meek.

2. Jesus,
Save us from ourselves,
For we are always wanting more.
The last thing we consider, Lord, is:
Blessed are the poor.

3. Jesus,
Save us from ourselves,
For we pursue what makes us glad.
The last thing we acknowledge, Lord, is:
Blessed are the sad.

4. Jesus,
Save us from ourselves,
For we are blind, and immature.
The last thing we reflect on, Lord, is:
Blessed are the pure. 

🖤

You say, “I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.”
But you do not realise that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.
(Revelation 3:17; NIV).

I tell you the truth, unless you turn from your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven.
(Matthew 18:3; NLT). 

 


References

1. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth (Matthew 5:5; NKJV).

2. Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 5:3; NKJV). 

3. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted (Matthew 5:4; NKJV).

4. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God (Matthew 5:8; NKJV).