It was one of those mornings…I wonder if you ever have them, when loving, merciful, true truth seems hard to find and yet the ‘truth’ of your own nature is all too clearly visible, at least to yourself.
If you know what this is like, then maybe you’ll find this helpful as I did.

The Small Verse
Open, Lord, my eyes that I may see. Open, Lord, my ears that I may hear. Open, Lord, my heart and my mind that I may understand. So shall I turn to you and be healed.

The Prayer Appointed for the Week
Most loving Father, whose will it is for us to give thanks for all things, to fear nothing but the loss of you, and to cast all our care on you who cares for us: Preserve me from faithless fears and worldly anxieties, that no clouds of this mortal life may hide from me the light of that love which is immortal, and which you have manifested to us in your Son Jesus Christ our Lord; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Lord God, almighty and everlasting Father, you have brought me in safety to this new day: Preserve me with your mighty power, that I may not fall into sin, nor be overcome by adversity; and in all I do direct me to the fulfilling of your purpose; through Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen.

These prayers are from the Divine Hours by Phyllis Tickle, they were particularly apt for me today. You know those days when you wake, believing you are vividly aware of knowing yourself, but in reality, you are only engaging with those parts of yourself that you want to be rid of?
That was me this morning.

As I took refuge in the words of ancient prayers, this first prayer echoed round my heart and made me long even more for growth and healing in myself. My sin needs repentance and my weakness needs encounter with God or I will return to this place again.
Where is this place? Oh…just the same old place of fear and insecurity. We all have our old haunts and the enemy knows this is a good place to come hunting in me for a foothold. I know, or I should by now, that if I’m vulnerable because I’m more visible than usual then he can tell me I’m rubbish and a fake and sometimes he finds I will listen.

As I read the second prayer I’ve posted here, ‘The Prayer Appointed for the Week‘, it too hit home. I need fear nothing, he loves me and will take good care of me….or more accurately, it hit home that I was dealing in ‘faithless fears and worldly anxieties’, my heart only slowly received warmth from the fact that he loves me and I need fear nothing.

Then, of course, there is the beauty of the concluding morning prayer, which I love, and especially engage with more often than many others.
Here it is again:
Lord God, almighty and everlasting Father, you have brought me in safety to this new day: Preserve me with your mighty power, that I may not fall into sin, nor be overcome by adversity; and in all I do direct me to the fulfilling of your purpose; through Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen.

I spent a fair amount of time with my husband, listening to what he had to say, because the truth needs to come from those closest to us as well as from spending time with God. Both are vital for a healthy life, he is good at this stuff, he’s had a lot of practice, we’ve been together since I was fourteen…

Jenn Johnson sings ‘Lord, I look to you, I won’t be overwhelmed‘ a song she grew into when she was finding the challenge of everyday life…well, challenging.

Many have found they can look to God by spending time sitting in his presence, that this is the best way to deal with those aspects of our nature we all long to be free from, to address them directly isn’t always the most fruitful way, but go indirectly, via the presence of God, and a freedom can be discovered which is not possible elsewhere.

To be like Jesus, we don’t ‘go direct’ and try hard to behave like he did, we can’t make ourselves fearless, gentle, or humble, we can’t strain and urge until we are able to discern what the Father wants us to do. We need to engage in the habits Jesus had, the rhythm of life he walked in was to be quiet with his Father, restore his soul and hear what he had to say.

Do I know this? Yes. Do I still need to remind myself? Yes.

I thought you might like to be reminded too.

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