Your daily prayer

A Prayer for Earth Day
By Jennifer Heeren

“Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.” – (Psalm 139:14)

The definition of faith is to believe in things that we cannot see. And God rewards and loves faith. But there is plenty to see that builds faith as well.

1. The Placement of Earth in the Universe

In space, stars often explode into supernovas. The Earth, however, is located in such a position that it doesn’t fall victim to devastating collisions with stars. Our moon also protects us from collisions with debris. Nearby Jupiter draws objects that have the potential to hit the Earth. In the universe, too many stars grouped together can cause immense radiation. The Earth only has a few stars near it so too much radiation isn’t a problem.

Somehow, our planet is placed in just the right position to protect it.

2. The Climate for Life on Earth

The Earth is just the right distance from our solar system’s sun—any closer and we as well as our water supply would burn up and any further we’d freeze. Even the tilt of our planet makes a huge difference. If it was tilted differently, temperatures would quickly rise or lower to extremes. The size the Earth is also just right to hold just the right amount of oxygen and carbon dioxide—both are essential to sustaining life.

The Earth is different from every other planet around it and it contains the perfect conditions for life.

3. The Intricacies of the Human Body

The human body has many, many parts and systems that work seamlessly to fight off problems and disease. For the most part, everything works perfectly without the person’s opinion or guidance. It takes seven octillion atoms to make up one human body. The eye has the equivalent of 576 megapixels. Even the smallest parts of us have a purpose. The pinky finger contributes to about 50 percent of the hand’s strength.

The body has a multitude of parts that work in sync.

And best of all, God didn’t just create a functional world, although that alone is huge. He also gave us the ability to see, hear, touch, taste, and smell so we could appreciate beauty as well as function.

It takes more faith to believe that an explosion alone created this perfect environment than it does to believe that an Almighty Engineer built it. When you throw a bunch of random things in a pile, you do not get intricate design. You get chaos. But when you engineer and design things, you come up with products that have a purpose and beauty too. The extreme details involved in life as we know it point extensively to a Creator who deserves to be praised!

Prayer for Earth Day

Dear Creator God,  on this Earth Day and all days, let me always be in awe of Your wonderful works of creation. I don’t want to take the details of the world You created for me for granted. Everything around me is wonderfully complex and splendid. You, Lord, are both an Engineer and an Artist that built a world to perfectly sustain life. But you didn’t stop there. You also made immense details that please all of our senses as well. There are beautiful things to see, sounds to hear, textures to feel, yummy food to taste, and even delightful aromas to bring us enjoyment. Thank you for the details of life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Editor’s Note: Content taken from “3 Ways to be Sure God Exists” by Jennifer Heeren. You can read that piece in full here. All rights reserved.

A Prayer to Pray Before You Sleep (reblog?)

At the end of every day there’s nothing better we can do than to give it all to God. To lay down our worries and cares. To thank him for his blessings and his presence through every hour of the day. To recognize the ways he’s led us, offered protection over our families, and provided for our needs. And though often we know that to be true, it can be difficult to really let everything go. Or we forget to even give him thanks for the constant way he’s at work in our lives.

We carry the worries and stress straight to bed with us. We hold on to the wounds and hurt feelings. We wrestle for sleep but can’t seem to turn off the spinning thoughts of to-do lists, schedules, and what we still need to get done for tomorrow.

It’s true, some days just get hard.

It’s true, some days just get hard.

We feel exhausted. Worn. Tired of fighting. Struggling with defeated thoughts. None of us are immune. And often there’s not even just one big thing, but just lots of little battles that can drain us dry. Parenting, marriage, job, relationships, fears, worries about the future, experiencing loss, discouragement, illness, money problems – it all can leave us beaten down and worn. And the enemy seems to fight hardest when he knows we’re already weary.

God’s very presence and the truth of his word are the only things that can bring deep peace to our souls. The peace he gives is the kind of peace the world can’t offer, the kind of peace that doesn’t make sense even to our own minds.

Photo by Jordan Bauer on Unsplash

"Your future is secure and made certain because of him."

“Your future is secure and made certain because of him.”

May he remind you right now that you are never alone, that he knows your way, and he has a plan. He’s right there with you, both now and in all your tomorrows too. He has already covered the past, so you don’t have to keep going back there. You don’t live there anymore. And your future is secure and made certain because of him. You can rest assured, knowing, believing, he holds it all in his hands.

Come to him with your troubles. May God lift all burdens of anxiety from your shoulders. Where you’ve been filled with doubt, may he replace it with faith. Where you’ve been filled with racing thoughts, may he replace it with calm.

"He's the storm-calmer, the peace-giver, the burden-lifter, the hope-bringer."

“He’s the storm-calmer, the peace-giver, the burden-lifter, the hope-bringer.”

Whatever’s pressing on our minds and hearts tonight, may God give us the strength to lay it down…again. All our wrestling, and the worries and stress we carry, are useless. We can trust that he’ll take care of whatever concerns us. He knows the best way; his timing is perfect. And he is able. He’s the storm-calmer, the peace-giver, the burden-lifter, the hope-bringer. Nothing is too difficult for him. He truly is our peace.

Use this prayer as an outline for your own prayer to God for the end of each day, and let him fill you with his peace and love.

 

A Prayer to End the Day:

A Prayer to End the Day:

Dear God,

Thank you for the blessing of this day and your goodness in it, we’re grateful for the gift of life. Thank you for all that you’ve allowed into our lives these past hours, the good along with the hard things, which have reminded us how much we need you and rely on your presence filling us every single day. Thank you for your great love and care. Thank you for your mercy and grace. Thank you that you are always with us and will never leave us.

We ask for your huge peace to surround us tonight, all of us who feel restless and worried right now, those who have been carrying big burdens and shouldering stress. Help us to lay it down before you, again, even though we’re struggling to really let go. Remind us that you can carry it so much better than we ever could. May your power and your rest fill us fresh. May the presence of your Spirit breathe hope deep into our souls, even as we sleep.

We give you every care, and every anxious thought.

We give you every care, and every anxious thought.

We choose to find rest in you. We choose faith over fear. Thank you that you are our refuge and strength, a very present help in times of uncertainty or trouble. Thank you for your promise that it’s your peace that will guard and protect our hearts and minds in Christ, as we pray about all that concerns us.

Lord we confess to you that sometimes our worries seem too big, we don’t see a way out of our current circumstances, and we can’t understand what you’re doing. But we know that you see the big picture and thank you that you are with us in it all. Help us to trust you more. Thank you for your reminders that you are surely with us. Thank you that through every weakness and hard place, your strength is displayed in our lives. We can’t do it on our own. But you can work miracles, in us, through us.

Forgive us God for the times we missed the mark today.

Forgive us God for the times we missed the mark today.

Forgive us for the times we tried to do things all in our own strength, getting too easily distracted, or forgetting our need for you. Forgive us for letting fear and impatience control us, or for allowing pride and selfishness to dictate our choices. Forgive us for not following your ways or for living distant from your presence. Cleanse our hearts and renew our minds in you, as we lay it all to rest.

We ask that you would provide for our needs, even as we sleep. We pray for your huge grace and favor. We thank you that you never sleep or slumber, that you’re always at work, even in the dark of night, even behind the scenes where we can’t fully see. We pray for your blessings to cover us, that you would make every plan you’ve birthed in our hearts to succeed at just the right time. We pray that you’d be opening doors, clearing pathways, closing the wrong roads, and setting up our way for tomorrow.

We pray for your protection over our family and all those we love.

We pray for your protection over our family and all those we love.

We ask for your hand to cover us and keep us distanced from the evil intent of the enemy; that you’d be a barrier to surround us, and we’d be safe in your hands.  We pray for your healing and huge grace to encircle us in every need, and for your comfort to cover us when we feel deep loss. We ask for your angels of protection to surround our families through the night.

Help us to be alert to your spirit, that our hearts would be eager to hear your voice as we awaken. We pray you’d make us strong and courageous for the road ahead. Help us to feel refreshed deep down in our souls, and to be faithful to walk in the wisdom of your word. Give us a desire for more of your presence. Help us to remember to rely fully on you, fixing our eyes on Jesus. We ask for your words of truth and power to strengthen us in our inner being.

Thank you for your goodness, thank you that you know the way we take and that you have a plan.

We love you Lord, we need you, and we thank you we can rest in your perfect care.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen.

 

12 Verses to Pray Before You Sleep

12 Verses to Pray Before You Sleep

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7

“You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.” Isaiah 26:3

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” Psalm 46:1

In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, Lord, make me dwell in safety.” Psalm 4:8

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:14

“When you lie down, you will not be afraid, when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.” Proverbs 3:24

“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 14:27

“…for he gives to his beloved sleep.” Psalm 127:2

“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the LORD, ‘My refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust!’ He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you will find refuge…” Psalm 91:1-2,4

More Prayers

More Prayers

This article is part of our larger Prayers resource meant to inspire and encourage your prayer life when you face uncertain times. Visit our most popular prayers if you are wondering how to pray or what to pray. Remember, the Holy Spirit intercedes for us and God knows your heart even if you can’t find the words to pray.

A Daily Morning Prayer
A Prayer for a Broken Heart
A Prayer for Worry
A Prayer for First Thing in the Morning

A Prayer for When You Don’t Know What to Do

———–

Debbie McDaniel is a writer, pastor’s wife, mom to three amazing kids (and a lot of pets). Join her each morning on Fresh Day Ahead’s Facebook page, for daily encouragement in living strong, free, hope-filled lives. Find her also on Twitter and at her blog www.debbiemcdaniel.com

WOW THE BIG PICTURE

WOW – The Big Picture 4/22

 

April 22
Solomon and the Shulamite
Song of Solomon 5:9-16; Psalms 47:6-8; Proverbs 12:21
THE DAUGHTERS OF JERUSALEM
What is your beloved
More than another beloved,
O fairest among women?
What is your beloved
More than another beloved,
That you so charge us?
THE SHULAMITE
My beloved is white and ruddy,
Chief among ten thousand.
His head is like the finest gold;
His locks are wavy,
And black as a raven.
His eyes are like doves
By the rivers of waters,
Washed with milk,
And fitly set.
His cheeks are like a bed of spices,
Banks of scented herbs.
His lips are lilies,
Dripping liquid myrrh.
His hands are rods of gold
Set with beryl.
His body is carved ivory
Inlaid with sapphires.
His legs are pillars of marble
Set on bases of fine gold.
His countenance is like Lebanon,
Excellent as the cedars.
His mouth is most sweet,
Yes, he is altogether lovely.
This is my beloved,
And this is my friend,
O daughters of Jerusalem!
THE DAUGHTERS OF JERUSALEM
Where has your beloved gone,
O fairest among women?
Where has your beloved turned aside,
That we may seek him with you?
THE SHULAMITE
My beloved has gone to his garden,
To the beds of spices,
To feed his flock in the gardens,
And to gather lilies.
I am my beloved’s,
And my beloved is mine.
He feeds his flock among the lilies.
THE BELOVED
O my love, you are as beautiful as Tirzah,
Lovely as Jerusalem,
Awesome as an army with banners!
Turn your eyes away from me,
For they have overcome me.
Your hair is like a flock of goats
Going down from Gilead.
Your teeth are like a flock of sheep
Which have come up from the washing;
Every one bears twins,
And none is barren among them.
Like a piece of pomegranate
Are your temples behind your veil.
There are sixty queens
And eighty concubines,
And virgins without number.
My dove, my perfect one,
Is the only one,
The only one of her mother,
The favorite of the one who bore her.
The daughters saw her
And called her blessed,
The queens and the concubines,
And they praised her.
Who is she who looks forth as the morning,
Fair as the moon,
Clear as the sun,
Awesome as an army with banners?
THE SHULAMITE
I went down to the garden of nuts
To see the verdure of the valley,
To see whether the vine had budded
And the pomegranates had bloomed.
Before I was even aware,
My soul had made me
As the chariots of my noble people.
THE BELOVED AND HIS FRIENDS
Return, return, O Shulamite;
Return, return, that we may look upon you!
THE SHULAMITE
What would you see in the Shulamite-
As it were, the dance of the two camps?
THE SHULAMITE
I am my beloved’s,
And his desire is toward me.
Come, my beloved,
Let us go forth to the field;
Let us lodge in the villages.
Let us get up early to the vineyards;
Let us see if the vine has budded,
Whether the grape blossoms are open,
And the pomegranates are in bloom.
There I will give you my love.
The mandrakes give off a fragrance,
And at our gates are pleasant fruits,
All manner, new and old,
Which I have laid up for you, my beloved.
Song of Songs 5:9-6:13; 7:10-13
WORSHIP
Sing praises to God, sing praises!
Sing praises to our King, sing praises!
For God is the King of all the earth;
Sing praises with understanding.
God reigns over the nations;
God sits on His holy throne.
WISDOM
No grave trouble will overtake the righteous,
But the wicked shall be filled with evil.

Why Did You Lead Me Here, God? – Encouragement for Today – April 22, 2020

Abby McDonaldApril 22, 2020

Why Did You Lead Me Here, God?
ABBY MCDONALD

Lee en español

“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:19 (NIV)

I expected confirmation that we’d made the right decision. But as soon as we took the step of faith, we faced roadblocks.

My husband and I were in the midst of our second cross-country move. We had prayed about this move for months and sought counsel from other believers before moving forward. We asked God to open the door if He wanted my husband to take this job. And God did. But when we walked through it, we hit a wall.

First, our home wouldn’t sell. Then, due to a miscommunication, we didn’t receive temporary housing and lived in my in-laws’ basement for months. Although we were grateful for a place to live, the hour-and-a-half long commute wore on my husband. When we discovered our second child was on the way, the necessity to find a place to live became crucial. But despite our best efforts, we didn’t have a house.

What do we do when we think God is leading us in a certain direction, but we’re stopped in our tracks? How do we continue to act on faith when the path is uncertain? During those months in the basement, I wondered if we had heard God correctly. Things sure weren’t working out the way I thought they would.

But even in my doubt, God was working. He was there, but to see Him, I had to shift my focus. Instead of looking at the detours, I had to focus on the unchanging attributes of God.

In time, I realized that struggle doesn’t mean God is absent. It means He’s working. His faithfulness isn’t dependent on our receiving a specific answer. Faithful is who He is.

Often, I think obedience results in everything going according to my plan. I’m laser-focused on getting from point A to point B, and I miss what God is already doing. And while God wants to give us an abundant life, it may look different than we envision.

In Isaiah 43:19, the Lord says, “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”

Do you notice the word “new” there? It means unlike “anything we predict.” God has cleared the path for us. He’s prepared the way, just as He prepared the way for the Israelites who were in exile. The problem is, we tend to see only one way to get to the next point in the journey.

But God sees the entire trajectory of our lives. He sees not only the obstacles of today but also the road that will lead to victory. He sees the needs we overlook because He’s a good Father.

Eventually, I saw that God was providing stability for my firstborn during those months at my in-laws. After a huge transition, he needed familiarity. In my focus on finding a home, I missed it. But God knew. He saw each detail, and when the time was right, we acquired renters for our old home. We also found a place to live near my husband’s job that was the perfect fit for our growing family.

Friends, when we come to God with our desires, we can approach Him with confidence. We may not see the answer right away, but we can be certain He’s working. The outcome may not look the way we anticipated. God’s abilities go beyond our imagination. But often, at the moment we least expect it, we’ll see Him move.

Father, thank You for seeing each and every one of our needs, even when we doubt. Open our eyes to see the ways You are working when things don’t go according to our plan. We know You are a trailblazer, and our struggle is the fertile ground You use to do Your mightiest work. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” (NIV)

RELATED RESOURCES:
If we want to see God in the midst of our struggles, we must change the way we look for Him. Abby McDonald’s new book, ShiftChanging Our Focus to See the Presence of God, empowers readers with biblical truths and practical steps to see God working in their lives.

CONNECT:
For more encouragement to live a life of faith even when our steps are shaky, visit Abby’s blog, where you can sign up to receive a free copy of her e-book, The Daughter’s Manifesto.

Enter to WIN your very own copy of Shift by Abby McDonald. To celebrate this book, Leafwood Publishers will give away 5 copies! Enter to win by leaving a comment here. {We’ll randomly select 5 winners and notify each one in the comments section by Monday, April 27, 2020.}

REFLECT AND RESPOND:
Is there an area of your life where you prayed for God’s leading, but things didn’t turn out the way you expected? Reflect on times when He’s been faithful, and ways He’s delivered you in the past.

© 2020 by Abby McDonald. All rights reserved.

Abby McDonald is a writer, speaker, wife and mom whose passion is to empower women to grow in faith and hope, even when life is messy. When she’s not reading or writing, you can find her wrangling her three kids and black lab while drinking copious amounts of coffee. Abby lives with her husband and three children in western Maryland. You can connect with her at abbymcdonald.org.

Proverbs 31 Ministries thanks Leafwood Publishers for their sponsorship of today’s devotion.

Click here to view our policy on 3rd party links.

Proverbs 31 Ministries
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Matthews, NC 28105
www.Proverbs31.org

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