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Archive for the ‘God’ Category

MY PRAYER: When I Feel Rejected


 

MY PRAYER: Father,

I feel so broken and beaten,

So abused, rejected, and abandoned.

I never thought my life would be like this,

But I was wrong—dead wrong.

In spite of everything, You have been there,

Standing beside me in my darkest hours,

Even when I wanted You to leave me alone.

Things have been difficult for a long time,

But I’m tired of rehashing my pain and my angst.

I want more from life than being a perpetual victim.

 

Help me learn my lessons, which have been so painful,

So that I never have to repeat them again.

I don’t want to waste my years replicating foolishness.

Turn my imprudence into discernment,

So that I may gain wisdom and others can profit

From my experiences—just as I have.

In all of my broken places, heal me, Father,

With Your tender, loving, and caring hand,

Because I am ready to move forward,

Free from each of my enslavements and debilitations,

Amen.

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MY PRAYER: Father,

You know how badly

I have been mistreated

By those who should have nurtured me

But have done exactly the opposite.

Instead, they have taken advantage of my trusting nature.

I’ve expressed my outrage and indignation

To You so often that I’ve lost count of the times.

This affront has wounded me so deeply that—

In my pain and outrage—I know I have hurt others,

Which I have excused and tried to justify, but I cannot.

I fear I have become like those who have hurt me,

Wounding the innocent—just as I have been injured.

Father, I acknowledge I have behaved this way,

Which causes my conscience continuous grief.

I am becoming someone I do not want to be.

I don’t want to behave like my abusers,

But I concede that this is exactly what I have done,

Despite my persistent denials to the contrary.

 

Forgive me, Father. Heal my wounds,

And restore gladness to my troubled heart.

As a conscious act of contrition, I choose to renounce

My self-serving ways, which have been so destructive.

Despite my pain, anger, and disquietude,

I want to make a commitment to abandon my malice.

To ensure that I follow through with my intentions,

I will need Your strength and guidance.

Reach out to me and touch my heart, Father.

Help me bridle my sharp, caustic, and injurious tongue.

Keep my feet from stumbling, by seeking comfort

Through my addictions, which have been so destructive.

Transform my wandering heart and make me steadfast.

Because, without Your help, my resolve will be short lived,

Amounting to nothing more than a whimsical promise,

Amen.

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MY PRAYER: Father,

It is so easy to live my life each day,

Never taking the time to pay attention to You

Or to all that You have done for me.

I haven’t disregarded You purposefully,

But I have not made You a priority either.

Even so, when my life unravels and falls apart,

When nothing works and everything

That can go wrong definitely does,

My focus on You becomes immediate and complete,

And I regret the capriciousness of my folly instantly.

Becoming panicked, fearful that my world will crumble,

I want You to “fix” my problems quickly and easily.

 

Being honest about my desires, I’m embarrassed to say

That it is not You I want as much as what You can do for me.

It grieves me to confess this fact, but it is the truth.

Being fearful, in my pain and discomfort, I call upon You

From the depth of my being, begging You for relief.

I want You to take the mess I have created,

Solving each of my dilemmas quickly and effortlessly.

 

This is when I discern Your voice, which gently tells me,

To be still and know that You are Almighty God—

That Your thoughts are not my thoughts and that

You are in charge of everything, and all is well.

I know this should give me complete confidence—

That I should cease from my anxious fretting

And become still, but this is not what happens at all.

This has never been my experience.

Instead, I become more intense and insistent,

Beseeching, whining, moaning, begging, and harping—

Doing anything to gain relieve from my painful circumstances.

But no matter what I do or how animated I become,

Your answer never varies—not even a smidgen.

 

As I sit in solitude, in the few moments that are quiet,

Your voice becomes even clearer, reminding me

To be still and to know that You are God.

If I were stronger, I would cease from all my striving,

But it isn’t in my nature to trust this easily.

I wish this was my way, but it certainly is not.

I want to be peaceful and rest, but this doesn’t happen—

Not until I’ve exhausted myself with anxiety and fretful worry.

Finally, when I am completely spent and can no longer

Muster a complaint; I bow my knee, as I should have earlier,

And submit to the small quiet voice that never ceases to say,

“Be still and know that I am here for you—that I am God Almighty,”

Amen.

 

—Jack Watts

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MY PRAYER: When I Am Angry


MY PRAYER: Father,
As I grit my teeth defiantly,
My anger is so consuming that
Toxic emotions rule my soul.
My fury clouds my judgment.
The smile on my face has vanished.
Dark shadows dominate my countenance,
Warning others to stay clear.
I entertain vivid thoughts of being vengeful,
Of making my enemies pay a terrible price
For the injustice they have inflicted upon me.
When I look in the mirror, I don’t like
The person I see—the person I have become.
I spend my days feeding my anger,
Amusing myself with vengeful imaginations
That race through my mind repeatedly, in a never-ending
Cycle of malice. I’m consumed by thoughts of retribution
That dominate my waking hours and also my dreams.
I know I’m not ready to forgive—not yet.
While my hostile feelings has dominion over me,
I need Your help more than ever, Father.
Move me through this toxic period quickly.
Heal me from desiring merciless retribution.
Teach me to forgive—just as I have been forgiven.
While my anger consumes my conscious thoughts,
Depriving me of joy, peace, patience, and kindness,
Keep me from these four injurious behaviors:
From saying harsh words that can never be retrieved;
From wasting hours, feeding my bitter fantasies of reprisal;
From self-defeating behavior that assuages my pain—
And from desiring Evil to come upon my wrongdoers,
Amen.
Jack Watts

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MY PRAYER: Father,
The wounds from my mistreatment run deep,
Creating anger, frustration, and an overwhelming
Sense of worthlessness that
Enervates every area of my life.
With my mouth, I refuse to admit
That this is how I see my situation,
But in the deepest recesses of my mind,
I wonder if the castigation of my abusers is correct.
Maybe my life doesn’t have much value, after all,
Precisely as I have been told repeatedly.
It’s a message I have internalized as accurate.
When my exploitation occurred,
I was angrier with You
Than with those who abused me.
Because of the relentlessness of their vitriol,
I believed they spoke the truth,
Which was certainly what they indicated.
But now, I have begun to view things differently.
In my woundedness, it never occurred to me
That Your Son was also abused—just like me—
By hateful, self-righteous religious leaders.
You permitted His abuse—just like You’ve permitted mine.
What Christ’s abusers meant for evil, You meant for good,
Redeeming Mankind through his death and Resurrection.
Without the suffering of Your Son, all would be lost.
Thank You for allowing such a tragedy to occur,
On my behalf, as well as on the behalf of others.
Father, can You make my life have similar worth?
Can You use my abuse for something that
Has transforming value for others as well as for me?
Can You turn my pain and my weakness into strength?
Can You take my life, which has been shattered,
And make it joyful and purposeful once again?
Amen.
—Jack Watts

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A PERSONAL EXPERIENCE


HI, MY NAME IS JACK: Last Friday, I had tightness in my chest that I thought was acid reflux, but it just kept getting worse. I finally called my daughter, Katie, and she took me to Piedmont Hospital, just four blocks away. Within minutes of entering, after an X-Ray and bloodwork, over the loudspeaker I heard Code STEMI in room 14 . . . my room.
Within two minutes, I was in surgery where it was discovered that I had 100% blockage in my right carotid artery. The cardiac surgeon put in a stint and the pain was gone immediately. He said that if I had waited another twenty minutes, I probably would not have survived.
For the rest of the weekend while in CCU, they poked and prodded me constantly with this and that but finally discharged me Sunday afternoon.
That being said, I am extremely grateful to be alive, but I told the Lord I was ready to go if this was my time. Obviously, it wasn’t. My prognosis very good. Look fir me to continue being a warrior for the Lord and our American way of life.
Jack Watts
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Father,
I do not simply believe I have been mistreated,
I know I have been mistreated,
And You know I have been wronged as well.
I’ve told You what happened repeatedly.
Everybody in my life knows my story.
Now that it has been a while since my wounding,
All of my friends seem to have progressed
With their lives—everybody except for me.
I remain stuck in my debilitating mindset,
Which has not changed appreciably,
Despite the passage of so much time.
It’s infuriating and unfair that I am the only one
Who continues to experience such pain.
Those who used, misused, and discarded me
Should be the ones to suffer, but they are not.
At least, I can’t tell that they have.
I’m the one whose stomach churns in anger,
As I languish in resentment and bitter despair,
Refusing to move forward with my life.
I know I’m not hurting my abusers—not one bit.
I’m only hurting myself, and those around me.
It doesn’t seem fair—not fair at all,
But I can no longer continue living this way.
I refuse to waste my future nursing bitterness,
Rehashing my drama repeatedly in my mind,
But it’s going to be difficult to put my pain aside.
I didn’t realize I had drifted so far from You.
I didn’t consider how willful I had become,
But now I do. It becomes clearer to me each day.
I have blamed others for my plight for so long,
That resentment seems normal—even comfortable.
This frightens me for what lies ahead for me in life.
Show me how to find my way back to You.
Because, without Your active, healing guidance,
My life will never again amount to anything of value,
Amen.
Jack Watts

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