My inner wolf

Context: Following the recent blog about my shadow-self (see https://wp.me/p45bCr-bXF), this related, rather strange, exploratory and deeply metaphorical prayer surfaced yesterday, soon after I woke up. It was very hard to write!

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 7:20-3; NLT). 

A wolf from the desert will pounce on them (Jeremiah 5:6; NLT). 

I’m sensing my inner wolf,
Hearing it howl,
Glimpsing my shadow-self,
Watching it prowl;

Dreading my temper, Lord,
Hiding my fear,
Loathing my shameful greed:
Always so near.

Yet, in my heart, Lord,
I’m seeing your face,
Asking forgiveness
And seeking your grace.

Mingle my shadow-self
With your pure light,
For I face temptation
All day, and all night.

You are my Shepherd,
My staff and my rod;
You are my All-In-All:
Jesus, my God.

You are my chosen way:
Though I still sin,
You are eternal life –
Jesus, within.

We live in fellowship with the true God because we live in fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ. He is the only true God, and he is eternal life.
(1 John 5:20; NLT). 


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

You forgive and forget

Context: Today I’m writing an article I was given this morning to work on. I’m very tired, and have had a small eye surgery, so it’s not finished yet. Accordingly, I have brought out of my “storeroom” a blog I got ready a little while ago (see Matthew 13:52, for the allusion).


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).

I will forgive their sins and forget the evil things
they have done (Jeremiah 31:34; CEV).  

I love you, Lord, with all my mind,
And honour you within,
Because you pardon me each day,
Forgetting all my sin.

I love you, Lord, with all my heart,
And glory in your name,
Because you pardon me each day,
Forgetting all my shame.

I love you, Lord, with all my soul,
And follow you, my Guide,
Because you pardon me each day,
Forgetting all my pride. 

I love you, Lord, with all my strength,
And put my trust in you –
Please help me, Lord, to show my love
In everything I do. 

Do everything with love (1 Corinthians 16:14; NLT).

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

Close

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

1. You are as close to me as breathing.
You are as close to me as dread.
You are as close, Lord, as my heartbeat –
Closer than words unsaid.

2. You are as close to me as weeping.
You are as close to me as pain.
You are as close to me as anguish –
Closer than guilt, or shame.

3. You are as close to me as living.
You are as close to me as prayer.
You are as close to me as panic –
Closer than my despair.

4. You are as close to me as grieving.
You are as close to me as kin.
You are as close to me as dying –
Closer, by far, than sin.

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


References 

1.  The Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty gives me life (Job 33:4; NLT).

2. Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me (Psalm 139:1; NLT).

3. The Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words (Romans 8:26; NRSV).

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? (Mark 15:34; NLT).

4. To all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God (John 1:11; NLT). 

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

I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow – not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below – indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:38-9; NLT). 

Celtic Christianity (#2 of 2)

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge. They have no speech, they use no words; no sound is heard from them. Yet their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world (Psalm 19:1-4; NIV).

The sun rides high
In the silent sky;
The heavens stream
With your light.

The planets shine
Beyond space and time;
Your moon reigns
Over the night.

Lord, they rejoice
To express your voice,
But we only fear
And grieve,

For we hide in shame 
When you call our name,
As you walk in the cool
Of the eve.

They heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden. And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself (Genesis 3:8-10; KJV). 

World-wide justice

Don’t use your freedom as an excuse to do evil.
(1 Peter 2:16; NLT). 

Let true justice prevail (Deuteronomy 16:20; NLT). 

1. We pray for world-wide justice, Lord:
For shame about the lies we’ve spun;
For confession, and contrition
As we weep for what we’ve done.

2. We pray for widespread mercy, Lord:
For sorrow that we’ve used brute force;
For repentance, and forgiveness
As we face our deep remorse.

3. We pray for global fairness, Lord:
For readiness to love our foe;
For penance, and for reparation
As we pay back all we owe.

4. We pray for perfect wisdom, Lord:
For faith and hope; an end to war;
For reconciliation, truth
And peace on earth, for evermore.

The Lord will mediate between nations and will settle international disputes. They will hammer their swords into ploughshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will no longer fight against nation, nor train for war any more (Isaiah 2:4; NLT).  

You have shattered the yoke that burdens them, the bar across their shoulders, the rod of their oppressor. Every warrior’s boot used in battle and every garment rolled in blood will be destined for burning, will be fuel for the fire. For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end (Isaiah 9:4-7; NIV).


The Father shares our tears

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).

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

Beyond our death, all grief will end;
Till then, the Father shares our tears.

After death, all dread will cease;
Till then, he helps us face our fears.

Beyond our death, all pain will end;
Till then, the Saviour shares our cross.

After death, all cares will cease;
Till then, he helps us bear each loss.

Beyond our death, all hate will end;
Till then, the Spirit is our guide.

After death, all hurt will cease;
Till then, he’s always at our side.

Beyond our death, all wrong will end;
Till then, the Lord forgives our sin.

After death, all shame will cease;
Till then, we put our trust in him.

🖤

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 4:16; NLT). 

 


I have sinned

Everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.
(Romans 3:23; NLT).

Each of you must repent and turn to God.
(Acts 2:38; NLT).

1. I have sinned,
But I repent, Lord:
Father, I have fallen short.

Take my hand in yours;
Forgive me –
Help me not to sin again. 

2. I have sinned,
And I am sorry:
Jesus, I have fallen short.

Comfort my sad heart;
Forgive me –
Heal my sorrow, and my shame. 

3. I have sinned,
But I repent, Lord:
Spirit, I have fallen short.

Let me hear your voice;
Forgive me –
Tell me that you love me still.

4. I have sinned,
And I am sorry:
Three-fold God, I’ve fallen short.

Let me see your face;
Forgive me –
Strengthen me to do your will. 

🖤

I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources
he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit.
(Ephesians 3:16; NLT). 

Give your strength to your servant.
(Psalm 86:16; NLT).

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

 


Oneness

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

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

1. Father,
We are always one with you.

However long
Or short our lives,
We come from you,
And must return to you.

2. While we are on this earth
You wait within:

Longing for us
To seek your presence;
Yearning for us to change,
And turn from sin.

3. During our exile here,
We have a choice:

Learning to love you, Lord,
In all,
Or stopping our ears,
So we can’t hear your voice.

4. But, when our lives are done,
We meet again.

Then, as we kneel
Before your glory,
Will our hearts leap with joy –
Or burn with shame?

🖤

The day is coming when God will judge all of us. In the Scriptures God says, “I swear by my very life that everyone will kneel down and praise my name!” And so, each of us must give an account to God for what we do.
(Romans 14:10-12; CEV).   

Your eyes will shine, and your heart will thrill with joy (Isaiah 60:5; NLT). 

Their faces will burn with shame (Isaiah 13:8; GNT).


Fear God (#1 of 2)

I’ll tell you whom to fear. Fear God, who has the power to kill you and then throw you into hell. Yes, he’s the one to fear (Luke 12:5; NLT). 

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).

Fear God’s awesome fire and strength:
Turn away from sin.

Seek God’s gracious heart and mind:
Worship only him.

Choose God’s faithful truth and care:
Give up lies and shame.

Search God’s endless height and depth:
Honour his great name.

Share God’s blissful light and peace:
Make his love your home.

Choose God’s perfect way of life –
Serving him alone.

🖤

Serve him alone (Matthew 4:10; CPDV).

 


Sharing

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

You desire honesty from the womb (Psalm 51:6; NLT).

Lord,
May I share everything with you:
Progress, praise,
Achievement, love,
And joy.

Lord,
May I share everything with you:
Failure, guilt,
Rejection, shame,
And sin.

Lord,
May I share everything with you:
Sickness, pain,
Depression, fear,
And grief.

Lord,
May I share everything with you:
For then
I will experience
Your peace.

🖤

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand (Philippians 4:6-7; NLT).