Prayer, suffering, life, courage, help, bear, illness, mental, physical,

Blood within

Then the soldiers nailed him to the cross (Mark 15:24; NLT).

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Blood within;
And blood without.

Love within;
And love without.

Light within;            
And light without.

Hope within;
And hope without.

God within;
And God without.

Breath within;
And breath without.

Life within;
And life without.

Death within;
And death without.

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

At noon, darkness fell across the whole land until three o’clock (Mark 15:33; NLT).

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

Then Jesus shouted, “Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands!” And with those words he breathed his last (Luke 23:46; NLT).

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Personal growth, faith, prayer, contemplation, love, oneness,, Prayer

Learning, changing and growing

“Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good – except God alone” (Mark 10:18; NIV). 

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

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

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Lord Jesus,

Just as you
Were learning,
Changing,
And growing in faith and love
Throughout your life,

Please help me
To do the same.

I ask this, Lord,
In your dear name,
Amen.

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

The way of love

A few days ago I woke up speaking aloud. I was explaining to someone what following God’s way of love involves, like this:

Following God’s way of love means loving, and caring for, all people, all creatures, and all creation.

It means loving everyone we see, hear about, and come into contact with, however briefly – in person, by phone, online, in letters, whilst passing them in the street, or seeing them drive by, reading about them in newspapers, or watching them on TV.

It means genuinely expressing this love through everything we think, and say, and do.

It means responding to all that happens to us as wisely, truthfully, and lovingly as we can, no matter how hurt, offended, angry, or afraid we feel.

It means working to forgive those who have hurt us, loving them, and praying for them each day.

It means never judging or condemning others, and it especially means a total absence of prejudice, discrimination, scapegoating, or hatred of others just for being different from ourselves. 

These qualities take years to learn, because they can only be developed through personal learning, inner change, and deep spiritual growth. This process depends on years of prayer, and of listening to God, as we struggle towards maturity, until we can always speak the truth in love – to ourselves, to God, and to others, as Jesus did.

His example of walking the way of love in both life and death helps us with every step along the path, for he asks us to face nothing he hasn’t already faced himself. Our goal, therefore, is to become more and more like him.

So here is today’s prayer:

Jesus, 

May we learn from you,
Our Lord, in heaven above,

Until our daily way of life
Becomes God’s way of love.

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Bible quotations

Walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us (Ephesians 5:2; NIV).

Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it” (Isaiah 30:21; NIV).

Commit everything you do to the Lord (Psalm 37:5; NLT).

I want your will to be done, not mine (Luke 22:42; NLT).

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

“My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed (John 20:28; NLT). 

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

Our souls’ release

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

I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly (John 10:10; NRSV).

Only he will release my feet from the snare (Psalm 25:15; NIV).

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

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Fill us, Lord,
With your forgiveness;

Fill us
With your healing light.

Fill us 
With your cleansing fire; 

Fill us 
With your lasting peace.

Fill us 
With your ceaseless love, Lord;

Fill us
With your precious truth.

Fill us
With abundant life, Lord,

So we gain
Our souls’ release.

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Personal growth, faith, prayer, contemplation, love, oneness,, Prayer

Life

Therefore let us move beyond the elementary teachings about Christ and be taken forward to maturity (Hebrews 6:1; NIV).

A wise person thinks a lot about death (Ecclesiastes 7:4; NLT).

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Lord,
Bless us all,
Throughout our lives:

Our struggles
To grow up,

To overcome
Our brokenness,

And search
Our inner depth.

Lord,
Bless us all,
Throughout our lives:

Our sickness
And decline,

The struggle to accept
Our fate,

Our letting go,
And death.

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Personal growth, faith, prayer, contemplation, love, oneness,, Prayer

No soul

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

Let love be your highest goal! (1 Corinthians 14:1; NLT).

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Father,
Life with you
Is an adventure –

It has meaning,
Steps to learn,
A final goal.

But without you
It’s essentially
Depressing –

It lacks meaning,
Has no structure,
And no soul.

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

Live without blaming others

Live
Without blaming others
For your life.

Love
Without blaming others
For your pain.

Lose
Without blaming others
For your loss.

Die
Without blaming others
For your death.

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Enjoy prosperity while you can, but when hard times strike, realise that both come from God. Remember that nothing is certain in this life (Ecclesiastes 7:14; NLT).

Love your enemies (Matthew 5:44; NIV).

We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28; NIV).

The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised (Job 1:21; NIV).

When your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow (James 1:3; NLT).

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

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