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Archive for November, 2019


MY PRAYER: Father,
As I have done so many times before,
I come before You feeling worthless,
Feeling like I can never hold my head high,
Feeling broken, scorned, and devalued.
The Scriptures teach that my transgressions,
Which have been so egregious, have been forgiven,
But I cannot seem to forgive myself for what I’ve done.
I can’t divest myself of my culpability.
My sin is ever before me,
Relentlessly wearing me down, grinding me down,
Telling me that I am not a good person,
Which in my heart I know is true.
Living in a dense fog of despair,
I wander through life purposelessly,
Never free from shame, never able to be myself,
Never able to experience sustained peace or joy.
I want to find pleasure in life and to cast aside
My debilitating low self-esteem,
But I have no power to accomplish this task,
Regardless of my earnest desire to do so—
Regardless of my determined efforts to believe differently.
My enemies scold me for my wrongdoing,
Wagging their condescending fingers in delight,
Mocking me with their disingenuous smiles,
Reminding me of what I have done—never letting go.
They seem confident my life will never have value again.
I loathe their reproachful, insincere counsel,
Which constantly reminds me of my failure.
It chips away at my self-worth each day, everyday.
Help me, Father. I have no place to turn but to You.
Forgive me and restore me to wholeness.
Help me regain my strength and sense of wellbeing.
Let my heart know joy and serenity once again.
Teach me to face my enemies with self-confidence,
Knowing that their condemnation no longer has merit—
Now when I have found complete forgiveness in You,
Amen.
—Jack Watts

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MY PRAYER: Father,

As I observe those who call upon Your name

To fulfill their trivial, meaningless desires—

Those who are always craving and never satisfied,

Those who constantly demand more from You—

Like ravenous, all-consuming gluttons—

I’m amazed at how little they understand

Either Your nature or Your purpose in life for them.

Mellifluously, they say, “Praise the Lord,”

In a voice that quavers with calculated sanctimony,

But in their self-serving hearts, they do not seek You.

Instead, they seek a way to take advantage of others—

To manipulate the innocent to achieve nefarious goals,

Which they cloak in a shroud of religious altruism.

Winning at the expense of those who must lose,

They smile greedily, having successfully conned their prey.

 

As I watch and listen, I still remember a time,

When I was young, naïve, and easily fooled—

When I was unable to discern their deceptive intentions.

But that was then, and things have changed.

When I observe them now, I recognize how devious,

Self-serving, and cunning they really are.

In their hearts, they harbor pretense and treachery,

While craftily displaying a facade of external humility.

When I was innocence and naive, I was easily deceived.

Trusting by nature, I believed they had been sent by You

And that they had my best interests at heart.

As I reflect upon their actions decades later,

Having weathered their malice, manipulation and treachery,

I see the fruitlessness of their constant scheming.

Now, when I look for them, they cannot be found.

While I smile at the future, regardless of what it may hold,

I have learned that coming to You in complete honesty

Is the only path that will lead to a life of lasting contentment,

Amen.

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MY PRAYER: When I Am Worried


MY PRAYER: Father,
I am grateful for all that You have done.
I am so honored that You would love me
And would pay attention to my needs.
On my best days, which seem to be rare,
When I am peaceful and tranquil—
When I am confident You are in charge
And that I need not fret or worry—
I acknowledge how truly blessed I am.
Help me live in this truth each day.
Help me show others that You care
And that You are always available.
Let people see by my actions
The depth of my confidence in You;
Let them be convinced Your ways are worthy—
And You are always wise and prudent.
Teach me to refrain from boastful arrogance,
And let the pride of life be far from me.
Do not let this be my witness; Do not allow me
To push those who seek You further away,
Rather than help them draw nearer in time of need.
Teach me to be mindful that whatever I do,
Whether positive or negative, that it reflects on You—
On Your holy name,
Amen.
Jack Watts

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MY PRAYER: Father,
As I observe those who call upon Your name
To fulfill their trivial, meaningless desires—
Those who are always craving and never satisfied,
Those who constantly demand more from You—
Like ravenous, all-consuming gluttons—
I’m amazed at how little they understand
Either Your nature or Your purpose in life for them.
Mellifluously, they say, “Praise the Lord,”
In a voice that quavers with calculated sanctimony,
But in their self-serving hearts, they do not seek You.
Instead, they seek a way to take advantage of others—
To manipulate the innocent to achieve nefarious goals,
Which they cloak in a shroud of religious altruism.
Winning at the expense of those who must lose,
They smile greedily, having successfully conned their prey.
As I watch and listen, I still remember a time,
When I was young, naïve, and easily fooled—
When I was unable to discern their deceptive intentions.
But that was then, and things have changed.
When I observe them now, I recognize how devious,
Self-serving, and cunning they really are.
In their hearts, they harbor pretense and treachery,
While craftily displaying a facade of external humility.
When I was innocence and naive, I was easily deceived.
Trusting by nature, I believed they had been sent by You
And that they had my best interests at heart.
As I reflect upon their actions decades later,
Having weathered their malice, manipulation and treachery,
I see the fruitlessness of their constant scheming.
Now, when I look for them, they cannot be found.
While I smile at the future, regardless of what it may hold,
I have learned that coming to You in complete honesty
Is the only path that will lead to a life of lasting contentment,
Amen.
Jack Watts

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MY PRAYER: When I Am Afraid


MY PRAYER: Father,
Sometimes I’m so afraid
That my skin grows cold
And I can hardly breathe.
I feel so helpless and all alone.
I’m afraid of so many things—
Of people, of places, of isolation,
Of death, and of economic insecurity.
The list seems endless, and I am powerless
To calm the fears that rob me of my serenity.
Without Your protective shielding,
I fear that imminent devastation
Will be my destiny, crushing me completely.
I am so consumed with fear that I cannot hear
Your calming reassurance.
In my heart, I know You are my immovable refuge.
My only hope is to rely on You completely.
In You, I am safe and sheltered from the storm
That threatens to destroy my future.
Help me to be calm, confident, and serene,
Regardless of my perplexing situation.
Help me to stand firm and never shrink away,
Regardless of the uncertainties that lay ahead.
Help me dwell in the safety of Your strength.
Guide me and protect me each day of my life,
For as many days that are left—one day at a time,
Amen.
Jack Watts

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