Thursday, January 17, 2013

Praying 10 minutes today: FRIDAY 1/18


(It snowed Tuesday night and Wednesday morning found the tall pines in my back yard bowed down before their Creator, their branches bent with the weight of white armor....   

Just a day later, their wintry coat melted away, those same arms were waving freely in a breeze that brought a welcome warmth...

I didn't find a haiku in my back yard, but I did find this prayer...)



Find a quiet time and place to pray... take a few deep breaths...
be still... and know that God is near...


In green pastures you let me graze;
   to safe waters you lead me;
      you restore my strength.
You guide me along the right path   
   for the sake of your name.
Even when I walk in a dark valley,
  I fear no harm for you are at my side...     
- Psalm 23



In January, Lord, it's not so easy to remember
   the green pastures and the safe waters where, not so long ago,
      you refreshed my soul and restored my strength...

In the dark valleys of winter skies and snowy storms,
   I much too quickly lose my way, my sense of where the path lies,
      of where your wisdom leads me
and I begin to fear what might be, what might come my way
   or even what I've left behind...

So, I pray you'll give my soul a place to graze
   though snow lies on the ground...

I pray you'll lead my heart to waters not yet frozen
   where I might drink and splash my face 
      with a bracing cold to wake me from my dullness,
         to stir me once again to know your presence,
            to waken me to trust in you as I have done 
               so many, many times before...

When winter's fields are barren and fruitless,
   feed me with the hopes and memories 
      squirreled away in corners of my heart, 
   stored up for just such times when my soul's hungry 
      and the harvest lean and spare, past its season...

When I'm thirsting for a drop to quench my worries,
   give me streams of peace still flowing free in places
      in my mind, my heart, my memories and my thoughts
   and help me drink, deeply, of grace that melts my fears...

In the quiet of my prayer, Lord, 
   show me the path that leads to you and to your heart
      and let me rest in warmth that stills 
         whatever shivers, anxiously, within my soul...

In the stillness of new fallen snow, Lord, help me find:
   the beauty in the cold,
   the prayer that comes of bowing down,
   the nourishment of heart-stored hope,
   the sweetness streaming from the tears 
      that thaw my soul and flow with peace...

Let no change in weather tempt me, Lord, to doubt
   for in stormy days and fair you take me by the hand
      and guide me on a path where I will fear no harm
         for you are always by my side... 

In green pastures you let me graze;
   to safe waters you lead me;
      you restore my strength.
You guide me along the right path   
   for the sake of your name.
Even when I walk in a dark valley,
  I fear no harm for you are at my side...  
       
(Before moving on to the reflection below,
   spend some quiet time with the scripture verse above...)

To ponder and pray over...
Are there times when hope is frozen and I wonder
   if the spring will ever come?
Will I ask the Lord to show me how he's with me
   in stormy days and fair?
Do I look for hopeful memories squirreled away in my heart?
Do I see in nature how even in the storm, the cold,
   there's promise of light and warmth?   
What will I ask of the Lord today?
From this prayer time, what word or phrase will I keep with me
   to carry through the rest of my day?

(After you spend some time with these questions,
   pray the reflection above one more time...)

Here are some tips for praying 10 minutes a day.  If you find these daily prayer reminders helpful, please let me know - and share them with others.  You'll find an archive of these daily posts here.

 
 
   
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1 comment:

michelle said...

thank you-

this was helpful at the start of my day-
and at the end...