Does God withdraw?

He makes darkness his secret place
(Psalm 18:11; LSV). 

When the sun sets on the hill,
Does God withdraw?

No, for he’s in darkness,
As in light.

When affliction blights my life,
Does God withdraw?

No, for he’s in weakness,
As in might.

When depression breaks my heart,
Does God withdraw?

No, for he’s in weeping,
As in cheer.

When anguish fills my soul,
Does God withdraw?

No, for he’s in all,
And he is here.

💙

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me (Psalm 23:4; KJV).


You’re here (#2 of 2 linked prayers)


He made darkness his hiding place
(Psalm 18:11; BSB).

You’re here, Lord, in my darkness:
You share it every day.

You’re present in the loneliness
I face along your way.

You’re here, Lord, in my silence:
A place I know too well.

You’re present in the weariness
Which locks me in this cell.

You’re here, Lord, in my weakness;
My wretchedness; my pain.

You’re even in my emptiness:
For I am your domain.


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

_____________________________

Share my darkness (#1 of 2 linked prayers)


Pray about everything
(Philippians 4:6; NLT). 

I want to share my darkness, Lord,
With you throughout today –
My foolishness; my ignorance;
My weakness, and my sin.

I want to share my emptiness
With you, Lord, all day long –
My brokenness; my barrenness;
My silence deep within.

I want to share my loneliness
With you, Lord, day by day –
My weariness; my suffering;
My sorrow, and my pain.

I want to share my littleness
With you, Lord, every day –
My worthlessness; my nothingness:
Then I won’t live in vain.

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

___________________________________

You share your strength with me

The Lord is glorious and strong
(1 Chronicles 16:28; NLT).

Lord,
You share your strength with me,
Which makes my weakness
Wholly unimportant.

Lord,
You share your mind with me,
Which makes my ignorance
Of small account.

Lord,
You share your heart with me,
Which makes my lack of love
Inconsequential.

Lord,
You share your soul with me,
So we are one,
And that is paramount!
You have been united with Christ Jesus
(Ephesians 2:13; NLT).

Brought to a standstill (for S. & A. K.)

Yea, though I walk in the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me. Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me
(Psalm 23:4; KJV).

1. Brought to a standstill.
Forced to rest:
The Lord will help you
Through this test.

2. Sharing all your pain
And fear:
His Son is with you,
Ever near.

3. He knows your weakness;
Hears your cries:
His Spirit prays for you
With sighs.

4. Protecting you
Beneath his wing:
Our God bears all
Your suffering.


References

1. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world (John 16:33; NLT).

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand (Isaiah 41:10; NLT).

2. In all their suffering he also suffered, and he personally rescued them. In his love and mercy he redeemed them. He lifted them up and carried them through all the years (Isaiah 63:9; NLT).

Be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age (Matthew 28:20; NLT).

3. 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).

4. He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armour and protection (Psalm 91:4; NLT).

Blessed be the Lord! Day after day he bears our burdens; God is our salvation (Psalm 68:19; CSB). 

Temptation (#1 of 2 linked prayers)

Hear my plea
(Psalm 28:2; NET).

Father God, in weakness,
Jesus, in dismay,
Spirit, in temptation:
Hear my plea.

Father God, in anger,
Jesus, in alarm,
Spirit, in temptation:
Come to me. 

Father God, in sorrow,
Jesus, in distress,
Spirit, in temptation:
You are near.

Father God, in failure,
Jesus, in despair,
Spirit, in temptation:
You are here.

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

Forgive my ignorance

Image: Pha Biano, Pixabay


✝️

1. Please forgive my ignorance,
And teach me, Lord, to follow you.

2. Please forgive my weaknesses;
Help me to serve in all I do.

3. Please forgive my selfishness,
Then I’ll see you in everyone.

4. Please forgive my carelessness,
So I will grow like you, God’s Son.

5. Please forgive my foolishness:
May I reflect your wise concern;

6. And please forgive my sinfulness:
Don’t punish me, but help me learn.

✝️


References

1. They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them (Ephesians 4:18; NIV).

Teach me how to live, O Lord. Lead me along the right path (Psalm 27:11; NLT).

2. This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all the same testings we do (Hebrews 4:15; NLT).

3. 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).

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

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

5. People ruin their lives by their own foolishness (Proverbs 19:3; NLT).

All of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord (2 Corinthians 3:18; NLT).

God looked on the Israelites and was concerned about them (Exodus 2:25; NIV).

6. The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He will not always accuse, nor will he harbour his anger forever; he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities (Psalm 103:8-10; NIV).

Your breath in my body

Image: LoggaWiggler, Pixabay


🧡

God is love,
and all who live in love live in God,
and God lives in them
(1 John 4:16; NLT).

1. Your breath
In my body,

2. Your life
In my blood;

3. Your strength
In my weakness,

4. Your fire
In my love;

5. Your light
In my blindness,

6. Your truth
In my soul;

7. Your Word
In my heart, Lord —

8. At last,
I am whole.

🧡


References

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

2. The Word gave life to everything that was created (John 1:4; NLT).

Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you (John 6:53; NIV).

The life of the body is in its blood (Leviticus 17:11; NLT).

Christ lives within you (Romans 8:10; NLT).

3. My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9; NLT).

4. Love flashes like fire, the brightest kind of flame (Song of Songs 8:6; NLT).

5. I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth (Isaiah 42:16; NIV).

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

You have received the Holy Spirit and he lives within you (1 John 2:27; NLT).

I am the way the truth and the life (John 14:6; NIV).

7. I have hidden your word in my heart (Psalm 119:11; NLT).

He is the Word of life (1 John 1:1; NLT).

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

8. Then at last everyone will say, “There truly is a reward for those who live for God” (Psalm 58:11; NLT).

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

God alone (with thanks to A.K.)

Image: falco, Pixabay


🤎

Be sure that your faith is in God alone
(James 1:6; NLT).

1. God, alone,
Turns anguish into joy.

2. God, alone,
Turns darkness into light.

3. God, alone,
Turns hatred into love.

4. God, alone,
Turns blindness into sight.

5. God, alone,
Turns sickness into health.

6. God, alone,
Turns weakness into might.

7. God, alone,
Turns exile into home.

8. God, alone,
Turns dying into life.

🤎


References

1. It will be like a woman suffering the pains of labour. When her child is born, her anguish gives way to joy because she has brought a new baby into the world (John 16:21; NLT).

2. The Lord turns my darkness into light (2 Samuel 22:29; NIV).

3. Love your enemies! Do good to those who hate you. Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you (Luke 6:27; NLT)

4. The Lord gives sight to the blind (Psalm 146:8; NLT).

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

6. To keep me from becoming proud, I was given a thorn in my flesh. […] Three times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me […] for when I am weak, then I am strong (2 Corinthians 12:7-10; NLT).

7. Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them” (John 14:23; NLT).

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