You are present even when everything else is gone.
You are by my side even when everyone else leaves.
You are real even when all else disappoints.
You are faithful even when I am not.
You are peace even when I am destruction.
You are strength even when I am insecure and shaking.
You are light even when all I seek out is the darkness.
You are restoration even when I am completely broken beyond repair.
You are holding me even when I feel loneliness.
You are in complete control even when I feel no control at all.
You are sovereign even when I try to take matters into my own hands and fail.
You are truth even when the enemy is whispering lies into my head.
You are all powerful even when I am powerless.
You are open doors even when I stubbornly close them all.
You are still the same God who stood in the fire with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. You are still the same God who saved Noah’s family from the flood. You are still the same God that used Moses and his stutter to lead Your people out of slavery. You are still the same God that changed the heart of Saul, a man who murdered Christians, into Paul, a man who brought Christians to You. You are still the same God who took Joseph out of the fields, out of the pit, out of slavery, out of prison and placed in him in the palace. You are still the same God who sent Hosea after Gomer, time and time again. You are still the same God who healed countless times. You are still the same God who gave sight to the blind, who made the limp walk, who brought the dead back to life. You are still the same God who provided for Ruth. You are still the same God who went after Jonah anywhere he hid, including the belly of a whale.
You remain faithful. You remain unchanging. You remain my provider, my protector, my strong tower, my solid rock, my healer, my restorer, my truth, my light. You remain my way out of sin and death and slavery and the fire and the pit and the flood and the belly of the whale.
You are still the same God who sent His Son to take on the punishment I fully deserved, the stripes I fully deserved, the humiliation I fully deserved, the judgement I fully deserved, the brutal death on the cross I fully deserved. Time and time again, You’re stories proved, even if it was just me, You still would have done it. But You, my sweet God, You offer that level of love and sacrifice to all of us if we would simply accept it. You offer that level of freedom to all of us.
We don’t have to stay hiding. We don’t have to live in shame. We don’t have to live in slavery. We don’t have to continue struggling. We don’t have to keep trying and failing to do it on our own. We don’t have to continue living in fear. We don’t have to continue living like we haven’t already been saved from all the mess this world will throw at us. This is not our home. Our story does not end like that. We have hope and healing and redemption. We have surrender at the cross. We do not have to carry our burdens on our own. We can leave them at the cross. We do not have to carry anyone else’s burdens for them either, we can help them bring theirs to the cross too. And we can leave it there and not pick it up again. You already conquered it. You not only will unpack that mess for us, You will literally crush it. You are the only one capable of filling the God-shaped holes in our hearts and in the hearts of those we love. We simply have to come to the foot of the cross. We drop all that weight off and pick up the cross.
So, here is my prayer. I pray for my loved ones. I pray they seek you. I pray you grab their hearts and fill the holes. I pray they surrender to you. Lord, Father, please keep knocking on their doors. I pray they let you in all the way. In every direction I turn lately, is someone I know that needs you desperately and I can see their need so soberly. Lord, I asked for you to break my heart for what breaks yours. I thought you were going to send me into the world. But boy howdy, you told me to stay right where I am, the most important thing I could do is bring your love and light to those right around me. Thank you for teaching me and guiding me and opening my cold, cold heart. Lord, please keep changing my heart. Father, change my attitude, my voice tone, my aggression, my pride, and bless, please fix my mouth. Lord, help me to chose kind, loving, gentle words. And help me quit getting distracted from my purpose. And as always I pray for my family and sorority sisters. I pray for my university. I pray for guidance for our government, church, and school leaders. I pray for protection for our troops. I pray for all of those that need you now and for those that haven’t met you yet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.