Prayer

Personal Prayers

Reflecting on Holy Week

The west side of the Wilderness…. The Valley of Dry Bones… The Desert… places in scripture where God’s people experience the Holy and Miraculous… but right now I am not seeing it… Our family is smack dab in the middle of a wilderness of God’s plan for our life. We are looking, listening, praying, reading scripture and seeking a glimpse of where God is calling us to make disciples and spread the gospel and it seems at times that God can be silent or whispering so softly that we cannot hear.

Today things changed just a bit. Today my wilderness reflection and Holy Week came crashing together.  God revealed to me… that sometimes… most of the time…basically all the time… we spend in the wilderness is a time we are called to release or re-frame the plans we have for our life / family / career and take on or accept the plans that God has for us.

During times of upheaval and uncertainty we tend to grab hold to things that are stable and firm so that we can steady ourselves and find our solid footing. As Children of God the moment we hit wilderness and our world is turned upside down we have a two solid rocks that we can cling to and that clings to us. One rock that we have is the story of God and God’s people that we can grip and steady our vision of an ever-changing world. The other Rock we have is Christ and Christ is the solid rock that clings to us no matter how bad or upside down our world seems. Today two lessons ring in my heart as I reflect on Holy Week and the wildernesses we face as Disciples of Christ.

The Hebrew people enter stage left, wandering, wondering, and complaining in the desert, they had to shed what they wanted for their life so that God could bring God’s people from death to life, from slave to free. (P.S. – they wanted leaks, onions, garlic; aside from bad breath they wanted to stay the same in bondage….!)

Jesus and his disciples enter stage right, atop the Mount of Olives where we hear Jesus, the Son of God, asking that the cup pass from him…. ‘Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me; yet, not my will but yours be done.’ Today I give thanks to God for not letting that cup pass because it is through that cup, the sacrificing of God’s only Son that I am able to have a relationship with my creator.

With the Hebrews wondering and wandering stage left and Christ submitting to the Will of the Father on stage right, we find ourselves center stage amidst Holy Week.

Holy Week is a time of releasing the control and the desire to keep life within the lanes we define and letting go of the life plans that we have so that we can turn to the Will of God. It is absolutely fair to pray, God let this cup pass if it is your will not mine, but my guess is there are times we are called to walk through dark valleys, sacrificing and surrendering what we want for our life so that we make room for God to grow and give life to our lives. We are the Post-Easter church. We know that Jesus is RISEN and that our relationship with God our Father in Heaven is secure forever!!! One thing is for certain, we know that because Jesus lives on the other side of death is Life. So, though we may enter the valley of the shadow of death we fear no evil. This certainty is not limited to actual dying, i.e. losing our life, kicking the bucket or punching the card the last time…

  • When we die to the ways of the world we begin to live into who and whose we are as children of God!
  • When we die to our life plans then we can live into the plans that God created us to live!
  • When we die to what we want out of life, church, family, relationships we begin to see how we can give of ourselves in those relationships and let God make them what God wants of them!

Pray the prayer Jesus gives us, ask God for the cup to pass you and see what God calls you to do… drink, pour it out, walk away, or pick up your cross and follow Christ…. The life of a disciple is not always easy; we will have to go through the storms of life to see the promised rainbow… we must traverse the wilderness to get to the land of milk and honey… we must experience the crucifixion before we get Easter morning…

Remember always, we as God’s people have nothing to lose… heaven is our final destination. So, why not work to re-frame / reorder your life now and experience the breakthrough of the Kingdom this side of the second coming of Christ.

 

Think for a moment, as you enter into this holy and miraculous wilderness that we call Holy Week:

  • What could God be calling you to release or let go of….?

  • Where in your life is too full for God to work and how can you shed some of those things to make room for God to bring you from death to life?

  • So how are you going to start living…?

 

Personal Note:

Today I stand tall as a disciple knowing that my LORD LIVES and because he lives I too live anew… Today I live by walking the dogs instead of sitting on the couch loafing… Today I live by surrendering to the wilderness and acknowledging that God will provide for our family and show us where we are to follow his command and Go and make disciples… Today I live by writing and praying….

 

My prayer:

Holy, mighty and ever living God, you created the heavens and the earth with your holy breath and hands… with those same gracious hands and mighty Spirit help us see the places in our life that we need to hold tight and to let go of… We are your children and as children we need you in our life to guide and tend to us. Come near those who are at death’s bed and bring peace to their life, welcoming them home. Be near those who are grieving their impending death. Walk with those who are addicted and provide them the courage and strength to live a life of sobriety.  Light the pillar of fire and smoking pot for those wandering and wondering in the wildernesses of life so that their wandering is not for naught but so that they, me, might find You… Bless us, Keep us, Hold us, Heal us, In the name of Christ, + Amen

 

 

Looking ahead, I will be reflecting on living a balanced life imitating the balance we see in the life of Christ.

Personal Note:

Today I stand tall as a disciple knowing that my LORD LIVES and because he lives I too live anew… Today I live by walking the dogs instead of sitting on the couch loafing… Today I live by surrendering to the wilderness and acknowledging that God will provide for our family and show us where we are to follow his command and Go and make disciples… Today I live by writing and praying….

Categories: Discipleship, Prayer, Reflections | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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