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,
Jack Watts

PRAYER: For Fortitude

MY PRAYER: Father,
As I come before you today on bended knee,
Submitting myself to You and to Your will completely,
I ask that you strengthen me with power inwardly.
Give me the fortitude I need to move forward.
Help me become the person You have called me to be.
The Scriptures teach that those who are lost will know
Your children by their love for one another. Let this be true of me.
Regardless of where I am in life, or what my situation happens to be,
Give me the grace that reveals Your love from the depth of my heart.
Father, You know me intimately and can number each hair on my head.
You know my struggles with my family, my work, and with those
Who do not know You—those who mock Your name and malign
Those of us whose hearts belong to You, and not to the world.
Give me a heart to be kind and loving to those who are not lovely,
To those who do not believe they need You but desperately do.
Let them witness Your overwhelming love and acceptance.
Allow me to touch them in numerous ways that demonstrate
Your desire to accept them exactly where they are in life.
I want to be of service to You and to demonstrate what
You are building in me. Father, let me be known for my love
For others and for nothing less than this for the rest of my life.
I ask for this spiritual breakthrough to be able to love
In the name of Your precious Son, my Savior, Jesus Christ,
—Jack Watts

MY PRAYER: Father,
I come to You broken,
With a continuous heartache
That I am certain will never end.
At times, it’s difficult for me to even breathe,
Fearful, cold chills pulse through my body.
My loss is so great that I’m certain
I will never be a whole person again.
I awaken at night, knowing something is amiss.
Then, grim reality floods my consciousness.
Startled and disoriented, I quickly become alert—
Fully aware of the trepidation of my circumstances.
Then, my countenance diminishes appreciably,
As despair and dread encompass my entire being.
I am bowed down and feel totally defeated.
This is when I come to You.
This is when I seek Your face.
This is when I weep and mourn.
This is when I feel consumed by the pain of my loss.
I desperately desire for my grief to abate,
But it seems to have a life of its own.
I want You to hold me like I am a small child.
I want You to “make it all better.”
I want my suffering and discomfort to cease.
I want to know peace and joy once again,
But none of my desires come to fruition.
Instead of granting my pleadings, which are really demands,
It seems like You speak to my heart, saying,
“You need to feel this pain for a season, my child,
But only for a season. For I know the plans I have for you—
Plans for a future that is bountiful and hopeful.
I understand your pain and your loss.
I, too, have felt such deep pain and sorrow,
But what I have gained through My loss is you,
And you are worth the price that was paid.”
When I comprehend this, when it resonates within me,
It provides me strength to move forward a step or two,
And I feel humbled and cease from being self-consumed.
This is when I bow my head, bend my knee, and say,
“Father, You give and take away,
You give and take away,
You give and take away,
Blessed be Your holy name,
—Jack Watts

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,”
Jack’s Prayers: mcgeeandme.net/books

PRAYER: When You Are 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,

PRAYER: When You Are Mistreated


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?


PRAYER: When You Are Abused

MY PRAYER: 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,
Jack’s Prayers: mcgeeandme.net/books