Is it hard for you to reach out for prayer? Do you feel guilty or like you are being a burden?
I took some time to talk with my good friend, Renee Swope, and ask her about a blog post she wrote about asking for prayer called, “When You Need Prayer But Hesitate to Ask“.
She shares why we fear asking for prayer, what we are missing out on by not asking, and what baby steps we can take in order to ask without feeling like a burden.
Mentioned in this episode:
Renee’s Office in what was her master bedroom:
What do you do when everything you know comes Undone?
From a “conquer the world” kind of a gal to a “cowering in the corner” woman, Michele Cushatt walked through a long journey from fear and panic to an unwavering confidence in God after a devastating cancer diagnosis.
Join us for a special message from Michele recorded before her surgery in November for the beginning of her fourth battle with cancer. Michele wants to share with listeners:
– God sees you and will provide you with the strength you need
– The peace she carries wasn’t easy but is only through God
– No matter how dark and big your circumstance, God is BIGGER
Listen in and check out Michele’s book Undone where she reveals more about her journey and shows how complication turns into a beautiful canvas, angst into joy, and the unknown into an adventure.
For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
Let us remember that, as much has been given us, much will be expected from us, and that true homage comes from the heart as well as from the lips, and shows itself in deeds. -Theodore Roosevelt
Perhaps it takes a purer faith to praise God for unrealized blessings than for those we once enjoyed or those we enjoy now. -A.W. Tozer
Thanksgiving is a time when the world gets to see just how blessed and how workable the Christian system is. The emphasis is not on giving or buying, but on being thankful and expressing that appreciation to God and to one another. – John Clayton
Gratitude is the inward feeling of kindness received. Thankfulness is the natural impulse to express that feeling. Thanksgiving is the following of that impulse. – Henry Van Dyke
Dear Lord; we beg but one boon more: Peace in the hearts of all men living, peace in the whole world this Thanksgiving. – Joseph Auslander
Thanksgiving Day is a jewel, to set in the hearts of honest men; but be careful that you do not take the day, and leave out the gratitude. -E.P. Powell
As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. -John Fitzgerald Kennedy
Remember God’s bounty in the year. String the pearls of His favor. Hide the dark parts, except so far as they are breaking out in light! Give this one day to thanks, to joy, to gratitude! -Henry Ward Beecher
If we meet someone who owes us thanks, we right away remember that. But how often do we meet someone to whom we owe thanks without remembering that? – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving. – W. T. Purkiser
“Gratitude can transform common days into Thanksgiving, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” -William Arthur Ward
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the lands!
Serve the Lord with gladness! Come into God’s presence with singing!
Know that the Lord is God! It is he that made us, and we are his;
we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise!
Give thanks to him, bless his name!
For the Lord is good;
his steadfast love endures for ever,
and his faithfulness to all generations.
Praise the Lord.
I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart, in the company of the upright, in the congregation.
Great are the works of the Lord, studied by all who have pleasure in them.
Full of honor and majesty is his work, and his righteousness endures for ever.
He has caused his wonderful works to be remembered; the Lord is gracious and merciful.
He provides food for those who fear him; he is ever mindful of his covenant.
He has shown his people the power of his works, in giving them the heritage of the nations.
The works of his hands are faithful and just; all his precepts are trustworthy,
they are established for ever and ever, to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.
He sent redemption to his people; he has commanded his covenant for ever. Holy and awesome is his name!
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
a good understanding have all those who practice it. His praise endures for ever!
We Give Thanks
Our Father in Heaven,
We give thanks for the pleasure
Of gathering together for this occasion.
We give thanks for this food
Prepared by loving hands.
We give thanks for life,
The freedom to enjoy it all
And all other blessings.
As we partake of this food,
We pray for health and strength
To carry on and try to live as You would have us.
This we ask in the name of Christ,
Our Heavenly Father.
– Harry Jewell
And just for giggles…
What we’re really talking about is a wonderful day set aside on the fourth Thursday of November when no one diets. I mean, why else would they call it Thanksgiving? -Erma Bombeck, “No One Diets on Thanksgiving,” 26 November 1981
I wanted you to know about the great sale on Praying God’s Word for Your Life that is happening right now for a limited time. Get the eBook for just $5.99 (or less at Amazon) at all major retailers for your eReader. The sale ends on June 13, 2014 so .
Amazon for Kindle
Barnes & Noble for Nook
Lifeway for Lifeway Reader
Description of Praying God’s Word for Your Life:
Many of us find it easy to pray for the concerns and well-being of others. But when it comes to praying for ourselves, we may wonder, Should I pray for my own needs? Are any prayers too big or too small? Are my prayers selfish? Does praying really make a difference?
Praying God’s Word for Your Life gives women the direction and Scripture we need to bring purpose and power to our prayers. In her warm, approachable style, Kathi Lipp shares more than one hundred specific prayers for our lives, relationships, worries, mistakes, faith, and more. The simple strategies Kathi reveals will help each of us create a habit of praying with renewed boldness, consistency, and expectation.
I don’t know when exactly I stopped praying. Just that, gradually, in the exhaustion and life changes of new motherhood, I stopped regularly reaching out to God.
I knew I needed God. Boy, did I need him. I was a mess. An exhausted, weepy, milk-leaking time bomb of a woman.
But other than frequently asking God, “Are you sure you meant me to be a mother? Really, really sure? Because I’m not at all convinced that I’m the right one for the job,” I wasn’t managing a whole lot of prayer.
I wanted to have quiet time with God, but many days I couldn’t even seem to find the time to take a shower. At night, during the three seconds between my head hitting the pillow and sleep overtaking me like an oncoming trailer truck, I would think, Oh I didn’t pray today. Again.
Part of the problem was my limited idea of prayer as this hour you spent with God very early in the morning. I constantly felt guilty for not doing this. Praying first thing in the morning is a beautiful way to greet the day, and I know that it works well for many, but at this stage of my life, the thought of getting up earlier than my lark of a baby was daunting, to say the least.
So I was thrilled to discover a prayer ideal for praying at night.
It’s an ancient Ignatian prayer called the Examen, and since it is an examination of your day, it makes the most sense to pray it at nighttime.
First, you reflect on where you felt closest to God in your day.
Second, you think of when and where you felt furthest from God.
Finally, you ask God for forgiveness for any ways in which you strayed and ask for help in doing better.
I love this prayer. Often I go through the three steps fairly quickly and then fall asleep. Other times I find myself lingering with God in thanks for something or working through a time when I messed up. It is so joyful to reflect about those times in which I feel close to God, which for me usually come when I am with my children or in fellowship. And I find that I don’t even dread thinking about those times when I have gotten angry (usually also with my children) or otherwise erred because I am asking forgiveness and resolving to do better. I actually find myself looking forward to these nightly strategy sessions with God.
Yes, I am still exhausted when I fall into bed at the end of the day, but having this agenda for my prayer makes it so much easier to do it rather than just feel guilty about it. (How much time do we waste feeling guilty about NOT praying?)
When it comes to prayer, I don’t think God cares much whether we do it at night or in the morning, just that we do it.
I still pray the Examen at night before I fall asleep, and I still get to be woken up in the morning by my early-rising boys leaping into my bed and snuggling into my arms. And that is a beautiful way to greet the day.
In the comments please share your tips or favorite way to pray. We will choose THREE winners to receive a copy of Julia’s book Mom Seeks God. You have until Friday, April 7. Or you can purchase Mom Seeks God today.
Julia Roller is the author of Mom Seeks God, the story of her journey to reconnect with God through ten essential spiritual practices that she did her best to fit into the chaotic life of a mom with small children. She lives in San Diego with her husband, two sons, and miniature dachshund.