Help me, Lord

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🤎

You are to be perfect,
even as your Father in heaven is perfect
(Matthew 5:48; NLT).

1. Help me, Lord,
To follow in your footsteps,
To walk with you,
And slowly be reformed.

2. Help me, Lord,
To understand your teaching,
To sit with you,
And gladly be transformed.

3. Help me, Lord,
To love and serve, as you did,
Like you in all I feel, think, say,
And do.

4. Help me, Lord,
To live and die as you did,
For then, at last, I’ll reunite
With you.

🤎


References

1. Then he said to the crowd, “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).

2. Don’t copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think (Romans 12:2; NLT).

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

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

Repent and turn to God

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💛

Each of you must repent and turn to God, and be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit
(Acts 2:38; NLT).

1. Repent,
And turn to God.
Open your mind –
Then wait,
Until his Spirit comes
To help you.

2. Repent,
And turn to God.
Open your heart –
Then wait,
Until his Spirit comes
To teach you.

3. Repent,
And turn to God.
Open your soul –
Then wait,
Until his Spirit comes
To cheer you.

4. Repent,
And turn to God.
Open your hands –
Then wait,
Until his Spirit comes
To fill you.

5. Repent,
And turn to God.
Open your eyes –
Then see, and love, and serve
His Son
In all.

💛


References

1. He will give you another Advocate, [Comforter, Encourager, Counsellor] who will never leave you (John 14:16; NLT).

Wait patiently for him (Psalm 37:7; NIV).

The Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness (Romans 8:26; NLT).

2. The Spirit teaches you everything you need to know (1 John 2:27; NLT).

3. He will give you another Comforter, that he may be with you for ever (John 14:16; DBY).

4. We know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love (Romans 5:5; NLT).

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

May the Lord make your love for one another and for all people grow and overflow (1 Thessalonians 3:12; NLT).

Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:40; NIV).

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

I’m sorry

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My life is spent with sorrow and my years with sighing; my strength has failed because of my guilt, and my body has wasted away (Psalm 31:10; NASB20).

1. I’m sorry that I’m nothing, Lord.
I’m sorry I’m so weak.

2. I’m sorry I can’t serve you, Lord,
And sorry I’m so bleak.

3. I’m sorry I’ve got nothing, Lord,
To show for all my years.

4. I’m sorry that I’ve wasted all my life
On sin, and tears.

5. I can only cling to you, Lord,
As I face each test.

6. I can only try to pray, Lord,
And to do my best.

7. I can only cry to you, Lord:
Father, lift me up!

8. I can only trust in you,
And drink each bitter cup.


References

1. I am nothing but dust and ashes (Genesis 18:27; NIV).

Have compassion on me, Lord, for I am weak (Psalm 6:2; NLT).

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

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

3. I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth (Matthew 25:25; NLT).

Is not all human life a struggle? Our lives are like that of a hired hand, like a worker who longs for the shade, like a servant waiting to be paid. I, too, have been assigned months of futility, long and weary nights of misery (Job 7:1-3; NASB20).

4. I was born a sinner – yes, from the moment my mother conceived me (Psalm 51:5; NLT).

You have fed us with sorrow and made us drink tears by the bucketful (Psalm 80:5; NLT).

I have cried until the tears no longer come; my heart is broken. My spirit is poured out in agony (Lamentations 2:11; NLT).

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

5. I cling to you (Psalm 63:8; NLT).

You examine us every morning and test us every moment (Job 7:18; NLT).

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

Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth (2 Timothy 2:15; NIV).

7. O Lord, I am calling to you. Please hurry! Listen when I cry for your help! (Psalm 141:1; NLT).

You have allowed me to suffer much hardship, but you will restore me to life again and lift me up from the depths of the earth (Psalm 71:20; NLT).

8. Trust in God and trust also in me (John 14:1; NLT).

He has […] given me a bitter cup of sorrow to drink (Lamentations 3:15; NLT).

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).

Humility

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Always be humble and gentle
(Ephesians 4:2; NLT).

The Bible tells us that God wants us to grow in humility. Mother Theresa of Calcutta, who is now a Saint, saw the process of learning to become more humble as a set of specific, concrete measures we can practice every day.

Her advice is easy to understand, but much harder to follow. Over time, though, by embracing her approach and making it our own, we can gradually learn to respond to people and events with greater acceptance and humility.

I first posted these teachings as a series of daily quotations on Twitter and Facebook. When that project was complete, I decided to draw them together, and make them available here.

Each quotation is followed by an illustrative verse from the Bible or few words of clarification. I hope very much that you will find Mother Theresa’s clear, practical advice as helpful as I do.


1. Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters:
You must all be quick to listen
[and] slow to speak
(James 1:19; NLT).



2. Aspire to live quietly,
to mind your own affairs,
and to work with your own hands
(1 Thessalonians 4:10; RSV).


3. You should mind your own business
(1 Thessalonians 4:11; NIV).



4. They have an insatiable curiosity to hear new things
(2 Timothy 4:3; NET).



5. Be patient with each other,
making allowance for each other’s faults
because of your love
(Ephesians 4:2; NLT).


6. Whoever learns from correction is wise
(Proverbs 15:5; NLT).


7. How can you say to your brother,
‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’
when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?
You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye,
and then you will see clearly to remove the speck
from your brother’s eye
(Matthew 7:4-5; NIV).



8. Do not judge others, and you will not be judged.
For you will be treated as you treat others.
The standard you use in judging
is the standard by which you will be judged
(Matthew 7:1-2; NLT).


9. He was oppressed and treated harshly,
yet he never said a word
(Isaiah 53:7; NLT).


1o. He was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
yet he never said a word

(Isaiah 53:7; NLT).


11. The wisdom from above is first of all pure.
It is also peace-loving,
gentle at all times,
and willing to yield to others
(James 3:17; NLT).

NB: This doesn’t mean letting people walk all over you. It means letting others choose, and gladly going along with their choice, rather than insisting on having your own way.



12. He was despised and we did not care
(Isaiah 53:3; NLT).



13. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way
(Isaiah 53:3; NLT).


14. A gentle answer deflects anger,
but harsh words make tempers flare

(Proverbs 15:1; NLT).



15. They brag loudly about themselves
(Jude 1:16; NLT).

Don’t do your good deeds publicly,
to be admired by others
(Matthew 6:1; NLT).


16. Whoever wants to be first among you
must be the slave of all
(Mark 10:44; NET).



17. Do not be wise in your own opinion
(Romans 12:16; NKJV).


18. Even the Son of Man came not to be served
but to serve others,
and to give his life as a ransom for many
(Matthew 20:28; NLT).


Reference

All the quotations used here can be found by doing a Google search for: “Mother Theresa humility list”. I am very grateful to Mother for putting her advice list together, and to all those who circulate various versions of it online.

Made of dread

Image: Leigh Heasley, Pixabay


🖤

I’m just a worm, less than human
(Psalm 22:6; CEB).

1. I’m made of dread,
Instead of dust,

2. And cling to you in doubt,
Not trust.

3. I plead through pain,
Instead of prayer,

4. And serve you out of pride,
Not care.

5. I offer sin,
Instead of good,

6. And wait for you with fear,
Not love.

7. I seek the dark,
Instead of light –

8. Lord, may I walk by faith,
Not sight.

🖤

We walk by faith, not by sight
(2 Corinthians 5:7; NIV).

I belong to you (#2 of 2 linked prayers)

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❤️

1. Father,
May I praise your name,
Serving in all I do;
Then I will see your face, at last,
For I belong to you.

2. Jesus,
May I face each day
Bearing my cross anew;
Then I will share your joy, at last,
For I am part of you.

3. Spirit,
May I hear your voice
Teaching me all that’s true;
Then we will reunite, at last,
For I am one with you.

❤️


References

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

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

You and I both belong to God (Job 33:6; NLT).

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).

Share your master’s joy (Matthew 25:21; CSB).

Don’t you know that your bodies are a part of Christ’s body? (1 Corinthians 6:15; CSB).

3. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth (John 14:17; NLT).

Then the dust will return to the earth, and the spirit will return to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NLT).

I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one (John 17:21; NLT).

The person who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him (1 Corinthians 6:17; NLT).

I belong to you (#1 of 2 linked prayers)

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🤎

1. Father,
May I praise your name,
Serving in all I do;
Then we will share my exile here,
For I belong to you.

2. Jesus,
May I face each day
Bearing my cross anew;
Then we will share each heavy load,
For I am part of you.

3. Spirit,
May I hear your voice
Teaching me all that’s true;
Then we will always live in love,
For I am one with you.

🤎


References

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

You and I both belong to God (Job 33:6; NLT).

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).

Don’t you know that your bodies are a part of Christ’s body? (1 Corinthians 6:15; CSB).

3. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth (John 14:17; NLT).

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

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 3:8; NLT).

The person who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him (1 Corinthians 6:17; NLT).

Start in silence

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🧡

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

1. Start in silence.
Wait alone.
Make the Lord
Your hiding-place.

Share each grief and fear
With him,
Then God will heal you,
Deep within.

2. Live in stillness.
Go apart.
Make the Lord
Your dwelling-place.

Love and serve
With all your soul,
Then God will come
To make you whole.

3. End in darkness.
Slip away.
Make the Lord
Your resting-place.

He will share
Your final breath,
Then take you home, at last,
In death.

🧡


References

1. You are my hiding place (Psalm 32:7; NLT).

Pour out your hearts to him (Psalm 62:8; NIV).

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

2. The eternal God is your dwelling place (Deuteronomy 33:27; ESV).

Jesus left the crowds to pray alone (Luke 9:18; NLT).

You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind (Luke 10:27; NLT).

Serve only the Lord your God (Deuteronomy 13:4; NLT).

Upon him was the chastisement that made us whole (Isaiah 53:5; RSV).

3. His resting place will be glorious (Isaiah 11:10; NASB).

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

The dust will return to the earth, and the spirit will return to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NLT).

Separation and reunion

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💙

May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven
(Matthew 6:10; NLT).

Lord,

1. At birth
We separate from you –
Living in exile,
Far from heaven above.

2. Each day,
We search for you as best we can –
Bearing our burdens;
Growing in your love.

3. Throughout our lives
We strive to do your will –
Serving your kingdom;
Following your Son.

4. In death,
We reunite with you at last –
Dwelling beyond all time,
For we are one.

Nothing can ever separate us from God’s love
(Romans 8:38; NLT).

Image: jplenio, Pixabay


References

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

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

You brought me out of the womb (Psalm 22:9; NIV).

I will be a sanctuary to you during your time in exile (Ezekiel 11:16; NLT).

2. “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord (Jeremiah 29:13-14; NIV).

Then he [Jesus] said to the crowd, “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).

May the Lord make your love for one another and for all people grow and overflow (1 Thessalonians 3:12; NLT).

3. Teach me to do your will, for you are my God (Psalm 143:10; NLT).

I want your will to be done, not mine (Matthew 26:39; NLT).

Since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear (Hebrews 12:28; NKJV).

Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me” (Matthew 4:19; NLT).

4. Then the dust will return to the earth, and the spirit will return to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NLT).

I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever (Psalm 23:6; KJV).

I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one (John 17:21; NLT).

All glory to him who alone is God, our Saviour through Jesus Christ our Lord. All glory, majesty, power, and authority are his before all time, and in the present, and beyond all time! Amen (Jude 1:25; NLT).

I love you

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🌹

1. I love you, Lord,
With all my heart.

2. I cling to you
With all my mind.

3. I serve you, Lord,
With all my strength.

4. I seek you in my soul —
And find.

🌹


References

1. You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind (Luke 10:27; NLT).

2. Cling to him (Deuteronomy 10:20; NLT).

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

4. “If you look for me wholeheartedly you will find me. I will be found by you,”  says the Lord (Jeremiah 29:13-14; NLT).

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