Every breath


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).

Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion.
(Ephesians 6:18; NLT).

Let every breath
Become a prayer:
Feelings, thoughts, words, deeds –
The same.

Let every sigh
Become a prayer,
As we hold fast
To Jesus’ name.

Let every stress
Become a prayer:
Pain, sickness, sorrow,
Sins and fears.

Let every test
Become a prayer –
Because our Father
Always hears.

🖤

The angel also said, “You are now pregnant and will give birth to a son.
You are to name him Ishmael (which means ‘God hears’),
for the Lord has heard your cry of distress.”
(Genesis 16:11; NLT).

We are confident that he hears us whenever we ask for anything that pleases him. And since we know he hears us when we make our requests, we also know that he will give us what we ask for (1 John 5:14; NLT).


Testing and temptation

The Lord your God is testing you to find out whether you love him
with all your heart and with all your soul.
(Deuteronomy 13:3; NIV).

When I’m being tested,
May I fear you, Lord, alone.
When I’m feeling tempted,
May I cling to you, alone.

When I’m being tested,
May I serve you, Lord, alone,
And when I’m feeling tempted,
May I follow you, alone.

When I’m being tested,
May I praise you, Lord, alone.
When I’m feeling tempted,
May I worship you, alone.

When I’m being tested,
May I love you, Lord, alone,
And when I’m feeling tempted,
May I trust in you, alone.

🖤

God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation.
Afterward they will receive the crown of life
that God has promised to those who love him.
(James 1:12; NLT).

When troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.
For you know that when your faith is tested,
your endurance has a chance to grow.
(James 1:2-3; NLT).

 


Life is short

How frail is humanity! How short is life, how full of trouble!
(Job 14:1; NLT).

No one can live forever; all will die.
(Psalm 89:48; NLT).

Life is short;
From birth, I face its end.
Life is hard,
But I am in your hand.
Life is a test,
Yet you, Lord, care from on high:
Sharing my sorrows;
Hearing every sigh.

Life is short,
And death is drawing near.
Life is hard,
But I am safe, with you.
Life is a test,
Yet you, Lord, come from above:
Sharing my anguish;
Pouring out your love.

Life is short;
My days are numbered here.
Life is hard,
But I need have no fear.
Life is a test,
Yet you, Lord, suffer within:
Sharing my pain, my failure,
And my sin.

Life is short;
My time on earth is brief.
Life is hard,
But I belong to you.
Life is a test,
Yet you, Lord, dwell in my soul:
Sharing my life and death,
To make me whole.

🖤

He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his stripes we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5; RSV).

 


At birth

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. At birth,
We all begin
Our lifelong journey
Back to you.

2. Our task:
To serve you, Lord,
In all we think,
And say, and do.

3. Our test:
To live like you,
By loving everyone
We meet.

4. Our goal:
To see your face, Lord,
Touch your hands,
And kiss your feet. 

🖤


References

1. Come back to God (2 Corinthians 5:20; NLT). 

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

Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all (Mark 9:35; NIV).

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

3. The Lord your God is testing you to find out whether you love him with all your heart and with all your soul (Deuteronomy 13:3; NIV).

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

As we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the day of judgment, but we can face him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world. (1 John 4:17; NLT). 

A servant of the Lord …must be kind to everyone (2 Timothy 2:24; NLT). 

4. I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:14; NIV).

I will see your face (Psalm 17:15; NKJV).

Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have (Luke 24:39; NIV). 

She kept kissing his feet (Luke 7:38; NLT).


 

I fix my eyes

Look straight ahead,
and fix your eyes on what lies before you.
(Proverbs 4:25; NLT).

I fix my eyes
Beyond this world –
On Christ,
Who shares my life.

I fix my mind
Beyond this grief –
On Christ,
Who shares my loss.

I fix my heart
Beyond this fear –
On Christ,
Who shares my dread.

I fix my soul
Beyond this pain –
On Christ,
Who shares my cross.

🧡

I focus on this one thing:
Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us 
(Philippians 3:13-14; NLT).


Oneness

From eternity to eternity I am God
(Isaiah 43:13; NLT).

There’s only one time
Throughout the world:
One now.

Only one God,
Before whom
All must bow.

There’s only one Spirit
In us all;
One soul.

Only one path
For every heart;
One goal.

There’s only one Judge.
We can’t escape
Our lot.

Only one test:
Did we love all,
Or not?

💙

Anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love
(1 John 4:8; NLT). 

Whoever loves God must love others also
(1 John 4:21; GNT).


You wait within

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

You wait within, Lord,
To forgive,
Yearning to help us grow
And live. 

You wait within
To make us whole,
Aching to save and heal
Each soul.

You wait within, Lord,
Every day,
Thirsting to hear us praise
And pray.

You wait within
To share each test,
Longing to give us peace
And rest. 

❤️

The Lord longs to be gracious to you
(Isaiah 30:18; NIV).


Thank you

I will thank the Lord with all my heart 
(Psalm 111:1; NLT). 

Thank you, Lord,
For healing us
In mind and body,
Heart, and soul.

Thank you, Lord,
For waiting all these years
To save,
And make us whole.

Thank you, Lord,
For helping us
To follow you
Through every test.

Thank you, Lord,
For cleansing us,
And promising
Eternal rest.


God’s promise of entering his rest still stands
(Hebrews 4:1; NLT).


If I never lay my cross down


Come to me, all of you who are weary
and carry heavy burdens,
and I will give you rest
(Matthew 11:28; NLT).

Father,

If I never lay my cross down,
If I never pause to rest,
If I never try to pray:
I’ll never bear each test.

If I never stop to listen,
If I never care to seek,
If I never wait on you:
I’ll never hear you speak. 

If I never ask forgiveness,
If I never feel remorse,
If I never start afresh:
I’ll never stay the course. 

If I never spread your Gospel,
If I never praise your grace,
If I never worship you:
I’ll never see your face.

If I never share your body,
If I never taste your blood,
If I never strive to follow Christ:
I’ll never know your love.

Those who wish to boast should boast in this alone:
that they truly know me
and understand that I am the Lord,
who demonstrates unfailing love
(Jeremiah 9:24; NLT).