Prayer, spiritual development, personal growth, faith, exploration, wholeness,

In your presence

When I wake up, you are still with me! (Psalm 139:18; NLT).

I know the Lord is always with me (Psalm 16:8; NLT).

The kingdom of God is within you (Luke 17:21; KJV).

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

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Lord,

I sleep and wake
In your presence;

Walk and talk
In your presence;

Work and rest
In your presence;

Love and pray
In your presence –

For you
Dwell in my soul

Both night
And day.

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Prayer, spiritual development, personal growth, faith, exploration, wholeness,

When someone hurts me

When someone hurts me, I tell them how I feel. If they apologise, I forgive them immediately and genuinely, without hesitation. Then we put what happened behind us, and our relationship is undamaged.

However, when someone hurts me, but doesn’t apologise, we inevitably have unfinished business. The relationship becomes awkward. I’m tempted to avoid the person, and may even do so. I wait for months, sometimes even years, still hoping they will think about what they did, and that in the end they will care enough to approach me. Meanwhile, I pray for them each day, whilst trying to forgive and love them.

Eventually, I realise they are not going to apologise, and give up hoping, which is a big step forward. I face the fact that forgiving them is entirely my responsibility, because the other person involved isn’t going to help in any way. They may have forgotten what happened, or simply not care. However, I still need to forgive them, and to work out how to love them and relate to to them, despite what they did. This is a big challenge.

From this point onwards, I continue praying for the person and trying to forgive and love them, whilst also attempting to develop a new relationship with them, if possible. On my side, at least, this new relationship will, of necessity, recognise, include and accept all that has passed between us, both good and bad.

In my experience, learning to forgive those who hurt us, but won’t apologise, is one of the most challenging spiritual tasks we face throughout our lives. However, such forgiveness is a vital healing process, if we are serious about spreading God’s kingdom on earth.

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If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them, and if they repent, forgive them (Luke 17:3; NIV).

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

Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing (Luke 23:34; NLT).

Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us (Luke 11:4; NLT).

Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you (Matthew 5:44; NIV).

Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them (Romans 12.9; NLT).

The Kingdom of God is within you (Luke 17:21; KJV).

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Prayer, spiritual development, personal growth, faith, exploration, wholeness,

You make and care for us

The Lord looks down from heaven on all mankind to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God. All have turned away, all have become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one. (Psalm 14:2-3; NIV).

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Lord,

You make and care for us
With love,

Yet we ignore and thwart you,
Which is strange –

For we’re on course
To devastate our world,

With greed, pollution, war,
And climate change.

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Prayer, spiritual development, personal growth, faith, exploration, wholeness,

My blend

Hello everyone. Much of the news has been bad recently, so today I’m posting a more lighthearted prayer by way of compensation:

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The baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God (Luke 1:35; NLT).

You are all one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:28; NIV).

People will come from east and west and north and south, and will take their places at the feast in the kingdom of God (Luke 13:29; NIV).

I can never get away from your presence! (Psalm 139:9; NLT).

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

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Son of Man, I am a Quaker
With a pantheistic flavour,
And a subtle Catholic influence
From youth.

I combine your Holy Scripture
With a dash of Celtic mixer,
And The Book of Common Prayer
Thrown in for truth.

I blend Buddhist meditation
With my Christian contemplation,
For both of these are simply
Wordless prayer.

So, rejoicing in your birth,
I pay homage to the earth,
And celebrate your presence
Everywhere.

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Prayer, spiritual development, personal growth, faith, exploration, wholeness,

Hidden anger

Do not let the sun go down on your wrath (Ephesians 4:26; NKJV).

Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us (Luke 11:4; NLT).

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

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Lord,

I acknowledge,
Here and now
Before you,

My hidden anger,
Hate,
And bitterness;

The hurt and harm
I’ve done
To other people;

And the conflicts
That have left me
Scarred for life.

Forgive and heal me,
Gentle Lord,
I pray,

And help me learn
To speak the truth
In love.

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spiritual development, personal growth, faith, exploration, wholeness,

My lips say I forgive

Whilst listening to a radio play called Home Front, one character said something that suggested the beginning of this prayer to me, so I’m very grateful to the writer for their inspiration.

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Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others (Colossians 3:13; NLT).

Do not nurse hatred in your heart (Leviticus 19:17; NLT).

Forgive your brothers and sisters from your heart (Matthew 18:35; NLT).

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Lord,

My lips say
I forgive all those
Who hurt me,

But my mind knows
It needs longer
To catch up.

My mind says
I forgive all those
Who hurt me;

But my heart knows
It needs longer
To catch up.

My heart says
I forgive all those
Who hurt me;

But my soul knows
It needs longer,
To catch up.

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Prayer, spiritual development, personal growth, faith, exploration, wholeness,

The struggle to forgive

Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us (Luke 11:4; NLT).

With the measure you use, it will be measured to you (Luke 6:38; NIV).

If you have been merciful, God will be merciful when he judges you (James 2:13; NLT).

Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others (Colossians 3:13; NLT).

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Lord,

The struggle to forgive
Those who have hurt us

Can be the longest, hardest battle
Of our lives.

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