Prayer: Your word gives me understanding, Oh God. You have called me to Yourself, to deny myself and follow Thee. You enlarge my perspective to see each day of my life as a longer plan reaching throughout eternity. Life is not for what I can gain or do or become, it is about walking with You and living and moving and having my being in You. It is to be found faithful at the end of my days doing exactly what You would have me do, to be found faithful in what You have set before me to do. It is You who make the way and orchestrate divine connections. It is You who order my steps and my steps are secure in Thee. It is knowing You and communing with You. It is to know Your voice, to listen, and to obey. It is to come away from the noise of the world and sit before You and receive wisdom and understanding from Thee alone.
Mankind can speculate, but You reveal truth in the hidden place and inner parts. You divide between soul and spirit/ join and marrow/ intent and action with Your word. You oversee all the ways and means of mankind and know the way that I should take. I will hear a voice behind me saying, “This is the way walk ye in it.” I will heed Your voice alone, for You are the Way, the truth, and the life. Without You is no good thing.
You are the breath in my lungs. I lift my voice with a praise and thanksgiving. I offer my days to you as a fragrant offering. I offer my heart to you to love those around me. Give me words of wisdom, knowledge, and understanding to bring a refreshing word to the weary soul, to build up and proclaim, “The Lord is good, come to Him all who are weary and heavy laden and find rest for your souls, for His yoke is easy and His burden is light.”
I offer all that concerns me to You, to enter into Your rest. I now move about my day with a renewed mind, an enlarged heart, and broadened perspective. You make a way unseen, you clear a path for our feet where it seems there is no way out. You make the way so that we triumph over my enemies. How good You are, full of tender mercies, surrounding me with Your grace and peace.
When I give up on myself, You do not, Oh Lord. When I tire of my own struggles and even the look of things about me, it is You who give a new vision for days ahead. You satisfy my thirsty soul and broaden the path beneath me so that my ankles do not turn. You give me plans and reveal new things to create and bring forth out of a creative mind and the works of my hands.
When I think that I am spent and look back over my life and incorrectly assume that surely my best days and accomplishments are behind me, it is You who renew my youth as the eagles, you strengthen the weak arms and trembling knees and say, “Go to a place I will show you.” A place in Your presence, a place of renewal, a place to get a second wind of strength and ideas from You, a place where I hear You say, “There is still more to create, there is still more to do.” Oh Lord, I await these new ideas from Thee that will bring life and relief, draw all mankind to You, and give You glory. Let me bring forth the more that delights Your heart in this day.
Ephesians 5: 16-26 – 6:1-10
“I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another. Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor. For each will have to bear his own load. Let the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches. Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.”