Prayer for wisdom and direction (Prayer day 30)

Making decisions are difficult when both the facts and the future are uncertain. We need wisdom!

Scripture

James 1:2-8; 4:13-15 – James’ instructions to a poor, persecuted church

1:2  Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, 3  for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. 4  And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

1:5  If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. 6  But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.  7  For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8  he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

4:13  Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”– 14  yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. 15  Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.”

Observations

  1. Read James 1:2-8 again and note the promises and instructions regarding prayer for wisdom in times of uncertainty:
    • What is the context in which this congregation should ask for wisdom? (verse 2)
    • What is the motive for this prayer? (verse 5)
    • Whom should we approach for wisdom? (verse 5)
    • What should we do to get wisdom? (v5)
    • To whom does God give wisdom? (v5)
    • In what measure does God give wisdom? (v5)
    • With what attitude does God give wisdom? (v5)
    • What is the condition for an answer of prayer for wisdom? (v6)
  2. James uses strong imagery about faithless prayer in verse 6. Try to make your own metaphor that conveys the same message.
  3. James 4:13-15 is written in the context of humility (see 4:6-10) in which he quotes from Proverbs 3:34 “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”
    • Considering the context of the poor, scattered, suffering church he is writing to, why would he need to write this instruction in 4:13-15?
    • What sinful attitude is James addressing in 4:13-15?
    • What does James imply a Christian should do before making plans for the future?

Application and prayer

As humans we have the tendency to escape hardship and flock to the greener grass. But neither comfort nor carnal appetite should direct our lives: we live in the protection, providence and presence of God.  We follow the Good Shepherd wherever He leads – through the dark valleys and to the still waters. He directs our path.

  1. Present your current life challenges to God: what is difficult or seem impossible?
  2. Pray in faith: remind yourself in prayer to God how big and wise God is by looking at His creation, his miraculous acts in recorded in Scripture, as well as His faithfulness to you in the past.
  3. Petition God for wisdom: Ask God to know His will in this situation – ask Him to speak to you and give you wisdom in this situation. Write down what you think and what you hear.
  4. Present your plans to God: the Proverbs below say to “commit your ways/work to the Lord”. So present you plans or ideas to God and ask Him if he approves.  Listen to God’s Spirit.  (it is always wise to get counsel from wiser Christian leaders and friends before you make an important decision).

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

Proverbs 16:3 Commit your work to the LORD, and your plans will be established.

 

 

 

 

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Power in prayer (Prayer day 29)

Your prayers move heaven and earth. Yes, your prayers!

Consider listening to or singing with Leeland’s Lion and the Lamb as we open Revelations 5 and 8 today.

Scripture

Revelation 5:8; 8:1-5 – The Lamb opens the Scroll to unfold God’s redemptive plan

5:8 And when The Lamb had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints…

8:1 When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. 2 Then I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them. 3 And another angel came and stood at the altar with a golden censer, and he was given much incense to offer with the prayers of all the saints on the golden altar before the throne, 4 and the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, rose before God from the hand of the angel. 5 Then the angel took the censer and filled it with fire from the altar and threw it on the earth, and there were peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning, and an earthquake.

Observation

Note: Revelation is an image-rich genre which communicates great truths, almost like contemporary Sci-Fi. In this scene above, Christ, the Lamb of God, takes the Scroll from God the King, and starts unfolding the events that brings God’s plan for His creation to fulfillment. The 24 elders represent the totality of God’s covenant people.

  1. Where do the prayers of the saints reach?
  2. What do the prayers of the saints ultimately accomplish? In other words,
    • for what purpose are the prayers of the saints stored up?
    • what are the effects of the prayers of the saints?
  3. What do you note about the the prayers of the saints and its impact over (a) TIME and (b) GEOGRAPHY?

Personal Reflection and Application

One gets easily intimidated to pray for big things like climate challenges, famine, wars, really sick people, the persecuted church or government. When things don’t change – or get worse! – one is tempted to give up praying. But the Revelation of John encourages us to pray, because it is indeed the prayers of the saints which move heaven and earth, affecting climate, governments, wars and ultimately ushering in the Kingdom of God. So pray on – Christ is in charge and invites you into partnership!

Be bold – choose one or two BIG things in your community, country and the world that touches your heart, and pray for that. Let’s follow the Lord’s Prayer as guideline

  1. Pray to OUR FATHER who loves all his children.
  2. Praise Him as HOLY – tell Him why there is NO ONE like Him (All-mighty, All-knowing, Just yet Merciful…)
  3. Pray LET YOUR KINGDOM COME, YOUR WILL BE DONE. Invite his reign into this crisis/ problem situation – that God’s reign be known and done in, and because of, this situation. Take your time here.
  4. Now pray for the needs – be specific: provision, peace, against seduction. Temptation, deliverance of oppression.
  5. Declare God’s KINGDOM, POWER, and GLORY. What will it look like if God was reigning in that situation? Speak it into being!

If this way of praying for the situation feels forced, pray in any way you want. Your prayers reaches the All-mighty God who rules heaven and earth!

Prayer in Crisis (Prayer day 28)

In a crisis we don’t run in panic – we reign through prayer!

Scripture

Psalms 143:1-12A Psalm of David in time of crisis

1  Hear my prayer, O Lord; listen to my plea!
Answer me because you are faithful and righteous.
Don’t put your servant on trial, for no one is innocent before you.
My enemy has chased me. He has knocked me to the ground
and forces me to live in darkness like those in the grave.
I am losing all hope; I am paralyzed with fear.
I remember the days of old.  I ponder all your great works
and think about what you have done.
I lift my hands to you in prayer.  I thirst for you as parched land thirsts for rain.

 Come quickly, Lord, and answer me, for my depression deepens.
Don’t turn away from me, or I will die.
Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning,
for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk,
for I give myself to you.
Rescue me from my enemies, Lord;  I run to you to hide me.
10 Teach me to do your will, for you are my God.
May your gracious Spirit lead me forward on a firm footing.
11 For the glory of your name, O Lord, preserve my life.
Because of your faithfulness, bring me out of this distress.
12 In your unfailing love, silence all my enemies and destroy all my foes,
for I am your servant.

Observation

This is an emotionally touching and theologically rich prayer.

  1. Why does David feel confident to pray to God in his crisis? (verses 1 and 2)
  2. Describe David’s situation in your own words (verses 3 and 4).
  3. What does David do to stir his faith and hope? (verse 5).
  4. What does David long for in this crisis? (verses 6, 8 and 10?)

Personal Reflection and Application

In his crisis David turns to God in prayer, confident that God is merciful, just and faithful.  In his hopelessness and depression, he recalls God’s saving acts of power and love. As he cries out for deliverance, David asks for God’s presence to comfort him, His Word to strengthen him and His Spirit to guide him through it.

Is there a crisis in your personal life, community or country? Then pray with David through it. (Note: it is best to pray these types of prayers so that you can hear yourself pray).

  1. Remind yourself of God’s power and faithful love demonstrated in his saving acts in the Bible.
  2. Recall how God has come through for you, your friends or family in the past.
  3. Describe the crisis in prayer to God, and how it makes you feel.
  4. Slowly pray these three things and wait for God’s answer:
  • Ask that God will make you aware of His presence, then wait to discern his presence.
  • Ask that God will give you a word of encouragement, then wait for God’s answer.
  • Ask that God will guide you with his Spirit, then wait and record your thoughts regarding the situation. Thank God for his presence, strength and guidance.
  • Respond in thanks and prayers as you feel.

Wait on God 2 (Prayer day 27)

Waiting on the Lord is what transforms prayer from a ritual to a relationship.  Be bold – ask the Lord the difficult questions, and confidently wait for His reply.

Scripture

Habakkuk 1:12-13; 2:1-4 – the prophet’s conversation with the Lord about the cruelties of the Chaldean’s

12  Are you not from everlasting, O LORD? My God, my Holy One, we shall not die. O LORD, you have ordained [the Chaldeans] as a judgment, and you, O Rock, have marked them for correction. 13  You who are of purer eyes than to see evil and cannot look at wrong, why do you idly look at traitors and remain silent when the wicked swallows up the man more righteous than he?…

1  I will take my stand at my watchpost and station myself on the tower, and look out to see what he will say to me, and what I will answer concerning my complaint. 2  And the LORD answered me: “Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it. 3  For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end—it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay. 4  Behold, his soul is puffed up; it is not upright within him, but the righteous shall live by his faith…”

Observation

  1. Israel suffers under the cruelty of the Chaldeans. How does the prophet find comfort in verse 12?
  2. Paraphrase the prophet’s plea to God in your own words (verse 13).
  3. How does Habakkuk prepare himself to get an answer from God in verse 1?
  4. How does God tell Habakkuk to prepare for the answer? (verse 2)
  5. What is [the beginning of] God’s answer to the prophet’s question? (verse 4; to read the rest of the chapter)

Personal Reflection and Application

To wait on the Lord means to confidently expect God to respond to your plea, and to respond favourably.  It speaks of a trust in the faithfulness, goodness and power of God.  The prophet Habakkuk shared his troubled heart with God, and confidently waited for God to answer him.

Is there an injustice, a problem or crisis that troubles your heart? Let’s follow Habakkuk’s lead in prayer:

  1. Confess your confidence in Who God is: his nature and relationship to you (verse 12).
  2. Confidently share your dilemma with God, and freely ask what you want to know (verse 13).
  3. Resolve to wait faithfully “on your post” until the Lord answers you (verse 1). (i.e. come back daily, ask God and search the Scriptures until He answers you).
  4. When the Lord speaks, through either Scripture a vision, in a dream, through His Still voice, etc, write it down (verse 2)! Listen for any instructions.
  5. Thank God for the answer and continue the conversation. Share this experience with a friend.

 

Wait on God 1 (Prayer day 26)

One of the clearest signs of trust in God is to wait on him: to refrain from any action in a certain manner and wait for God to intervene and resolve the matter on our behalf. Why and how would we do it?

Scripture

Psalm 62:1-12 – A Psalm of David

1  For God alone my soul waits in silence; from him comes my salvation. 2  He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken.

3  How long will all of you attack a man to batter him, like a leaning wall, a tottering fence? 4  They only plan to thrust him down from his high position. They take pleasure in falsehood. They bless with their mouths, but inwardly they curse. Selah.

5  For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him. 6  He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken. 7  On God rests my salvation and my glory; my mighty rock, my refuge is God.

8  Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.

9  Those of low estate are but a breath; those of high estate are a delusion; in the balances they go up; they are together lighter than a breath. 10  Put no trust in extortion; set no vain hopes on robbery; if riches increase, set not your heart on them.

11  Once God has spoken; twice have I heard this: that power belongs to God, 12  and that to you, O Lord, belongs steadfast love. For you will render to a man according to his work.

Observation

Let’s study this Psalm today by asking the interrogative questions:

  1. What does David wait on God for? (verses 1-2)
  2. In what situation(s) does David suggest we wait on God? (verses 3-4; can you seen three motives?)
  3. What is the difference between verses 1 and 5? What do we learn about waiting on God from this apparent repetition?
  4. How does David wait on God (verse 8)?
  5. In waiting on God, what does David not trust in? (verses 9-10)
  6. Why does David trust God? (three reasons in verses 11-12)
  7. What assurance does David have that he can trust God? (verses 11-12; hint: it happened twice…)

Personal Reflection and Application

To wait on God means to trust and wait for God to act on our behalf.  David waited on God because He alone can save David (v1-2) from the overwhelming odds, the false accusations and the hypocrisy and betrayal (v3-4). David’s waiting involved showing trust by refraining from own intervention and pouring out his heart to God (v5, 8).  He would not trust in people or money (v9-10), and trusted in God’s promise that He is powerful, loving and just in judgment (v11-12).

Is there a troubling situation that is either overwhelming or beyond your control? Let’s pray like David about it:

  1. Confess your trust in God regarding this situation (v1-2).
  2. Declare the situation to God (v3-4).
  3. Resign your effort and intents to solve the situation yourself (v5-7).
  4. Pour out our heart to God (v8).
  5. Give up trust on external (v9-10).
  6. Declare your trust in God’s power, faithful love and justice (v11-12).
  7. Now WAIT ON GOD FOR AN ASNWER, A WORD OF ASSURANCE as David did (v11-12). Write it down and tell a close friend about it.

 

Responding to a crisis (Prayer day 25)

No-one schedules a crisis, but at some point in our lives each of us need to respond to a crisis.  How do I prepare myself?

Scripture (in pictures)

2 Chronicles 20:1-28

Comic_1Comic_2Comic_3

Observation

  1. Note king Jehoshaphat’s response to the crisis.  What he did do in verses 3-4?
  2. How did he pray? (verses 5-13)
  3. After crying out to God, what did the nation do? (verse 13) and hod did God respond? (verses 15-18)
  4. What do you see in Judah’s behavior in verse 20?
  5. The story ends beautifully in verse 25.  But why do you think the nation needed to end at the temple again in verse 28?  What do you learn from that?

Personal Reflection and Application

King Jehoshaphat lived a life devoted to seek and serve God.  When crisis knocked, he turned and was confident to cry out to God, reminding himself of Who He is and what He has done.  Then the king presented his problem to God and confessed their helplessness and trust in Him. They asked for help and guidance, and when God spoke they acted confidently.  After God had saved them, they returnend to the temple to make His praise glorious!

Do you have a crisis currently? Then pray with Jehoshaphat today. (if your life is at peace, pray for one of the crisis currently threatening your community or country).

  1. DEVOTION(v6-13): Take time to reaffirm your devotion to God – reminding Him of His covenant with you.
  2. PRAYER (v13-14): Let God be the first place you run. PRAISE God for who he is, REMIND Him of his promises, CONFESS your trust and dependence on Him.
  3. WAIT (v13-15): Be still and wait for God’s direction.
  4. FAITH (v16-21): Worship God – with song and obedience.
  5. THANKS (v24-26): With every sign of God’s grace, stop to give God honor.

 

Persistence in prayer (Prayer day 24)

If I don’t get what I pray, does it mean God says “no!”? Or does it mean I pray wrong, have no faith or have sin in my life? Or is God not pleased with me?

Scripture

Luke 18:1-8

1  And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. 2  He said, “In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man. 3  And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, ‘Give me justice against my adversary.’ 4  For a while he refused, but afterward he said to himself, ‘Though I neither fear God nor respect man, 5  yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming.'”

6  And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge says. 7  And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? 8  I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?”

Observations and reflections

Context: In the first century, widows had no legal status or political power.

  1. What is the main point of this parable? (verses 1 and 8)
  2. How is God (a) different from the judge and (b) like the judge in this parable?
  3. What do we learn the widow about our prayers?
  4. What do you think is the meaning of verse 8? How will Jesus “the Son of Man” find faith?

Personal reflection and Application

We live in an instant world where you get what you want by clicking a button, swiping a card or making a phone call. Yet God does not seem to respond to our requests immediately.  Should I pray for something more than once? Jesus said yes! We should persist in our prayers, knowing that God hears and will answer.

  1. Few things challenge our faith like unanswered prayers. Think for a while of things that you have given up on praying for.  Tell God about these things, and how you feel about it.  (you can use the emotion-wheel again to help express yourself)emotion_wheel1
  2. Take some time and recall some answered prayers you know of in the Bible (Abraham’s son Isaac, Hanna’s son, Elijah’s prayer for rain, Moses’s Red Sea, manna, water in dessert, …). Talk to God about these answered prayers.
  3. Take some time and recall personal answered prayers in your life, family life or a friend’s life. (Ask the Holy Spirit to remind you). Talk to God about what he did and how you felt.
  4. Pick one of your unanswered prayers and passionately pray about it to God, asking Him to stir your faith.  Pray with thanks for what the Lord had done and with confidence that he hears you always.
  5. How will you remember to keep on praying about this? Who else knows about this need?
  6. dear_God_spring

 

 

Prayer for breakthrough (Prayer day 23)

Resigning to all circumstances as though God wills us to live like this forever leads to passivity and indifference – the opposite of faith, hope and love. In contrast, the Bible is filled with prayers that lead to breakthrough.

Scripture

Daniel 9:1-23 – Daniel’s prayer for Israel’s restoration

2  In the first year of [Darius’] reign I, Daniel, understood by the books the number of the years specified by the word of the LORD through Jeremiah the prophet, that He would complete seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem.

3  Then I set my face toward the Lord God to make request by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth, and ashes. 4  And I prayed to the LORD my God, and made confession, and said, “O Lord, great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and mercy with those who love Him, and with those who keep His commandments, 5  we have sinned and committed iniquity, we have done wickedly and rebelled, even by departing from Your precepts and Your judgments… 8  O Lord, to us belongs shame of face, to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, because we have sinned against You. 9  To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness, though we have rebelled against Him…

18  O my God, incline Your ear and hear; open Your eyes and see our desolations, and the city which is called by Your name; for we do not present our supplications before You because of our righteous deeds, but because of Your great mercies.

21  …While I was speaking in prayer, the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, reached me about the time of the evening offering. 22  And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, “O Daniel, I have now come forth to give you skill to understand. 23  At the beginning of your supplications the command went out, and I have come to tell you, for you are greatly beloved; therefore consider the matter, and understand the vision…”

Observations and reflections

Context: Daniel had been exiled and enslaved along with the Jews for 70 years by the time of this prayer. In reading Jeremiah’s scroll he saw that God foretold their restoration was due, and determined to humbly pray for deliverance from slavery.

  1. What was the basis for Daniel’s determined time of prayer and fasting? (verse 2)
  2. What was Daniel’s attitude while praying? (verses 3-4a)
  3. With what does Daniel’s prayer start? (verse 4b)
  4. What does he pray next? (verses 5-9)
  5. What does Gabriel’s answer suggest about the duration of Daniel’s prayer? (verse 23)
  6. Why is Daniel so confident in his prayer? (two things: verse 2 and verses 9,18)

Personal reflection and Application

As a youth, Daniel and his friends were exiled and enslaved.  For 70 years, they endured and served two empires, but never stopped praying and waiting for God’s restoration of Judah. The prayer above lead to the miraculous return and restoration of God’s chosen nation.

Let’s pray according to this breakthrough-prayer of Daniel.  Which situation in your life, community or country do you yearn most for God’s breakthrough?

  1. WORD: Can you recall God speaking to you about this situation in Scripture or otherwise? If yes, remind God; if not ask God and listen/ read the Word.
  2. PRAISE: Thank and praise God for who he is and what he had done. (feel the faith stirring!)
  3. CONFESS: If the Spirit of God convicts you, or if your sins are pressing on your conscience, confess your sins to God and ask for forgiveness – receive the gift of grace!
  4. DETERMINATION: Like yesterday, allow your heart and mind to stir with passion, and pray fervently. Clearly state what you desire from God (Consider fasting).
  5. CONTINUE: Persist in prayer – pray about this every day!  Are you serious about receiving this breakthrough? Hold on to God’s promise and person – he is willing and able!
  6. Tell a friend about this need for breakthrough; even invite him or her to pray with you regularly about this!

 

Power in passionate prayer (Prayer day 22)

One of the most destructive lies parents model to children is that we must be “decent” and inhibited in the presence of God. Once we suppress our joy and passion, our prayers are without life and power.

Scripture

James 5:17-18

The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit. (in reference to 1 Kings 18)

Observations and reflections

  1. James teaches us much about prayer here. What do you understand about prayer that is (a) effective, (b) fervent, (c) righteous man, and (d) avails much?
  2. James writes that “Elijah was a man with a nature like us”.
    • What does that imply about Elijah’s earthly life? What was his limitations?
    • What does that imply of what is possible for us? What is possible for us?
    • What should we learn from Elijah, according to these verses? (hint: look for the repeated F-word in verses 17 and 18)

Personal reflection and Application

God does not regard empty words – he responds to our hearts. Passionate prayer is powerful, because fervency unlocks the faith that moves us, then the mountains respond.

Talk to God about today’s lesson from James.

  1. Would you describe your prayers as “passionate” or “fervent”? Why/why not? When you read “fervent prayer”, what image does that conjure up?  How do you feel about that image, and why?
  2. Recall an instance where you were infuriated about seeing / hearing of/ reading about a gross abuse or injustice. Tell God about the situation and the feelings. Allow yourself to relive that event, to feel those emotions.  Now pray about that event with passion as the Spirit leads you.
  • Note your feelings, your freedom, your faith in prayer.
  1. Pick one current situation you are passionate about, such as a relational or family situation close to home | A business or project you dream about | Someone’s health or healing | A work situation | Art or music | The drought | The political situation | A specific justice issue like human trafficking, poverty, malnourished children, etc | The persecuted church or advancing Islamic militarism…
    Express your thoughts, feelings and desires to God about this, and allow your passion to be known.
  • Ask God what you wish him to do – but ASK BIG and BOLD! (“Is anything too hard for God?” Jeremiah 32:27)
  • Again, note your feelings, your freedom, your faith.  Now ask God to fire up your fervency – to stir your passion in your prayers.

Faith and feelings – praying my emotions (Prayer day 21)

Our emotions are neither our masters to whom we submit, nor our enemies whom we resist. Rather, our emotions are like warning lights that help us, drawing attention to our relation health.

For today’s devotional study and reflection, consider listening to this song from Casting Crowns.

Scripture

Psalm 43:1-5

1 Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause against an ungodly people, from the deceitful and unjust man deliver me!

2 For you are the God in whom I take refuge; why have you rejected me? Why do I go about mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?

3 Send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling!

4 Then I will go to the altar of God, to God my exceeding joy, and I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God.

5 Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.

Observations and reflections

  1. Note all the emotion-laden words and phrases. How many of the psalmist’s emotions could you identify? What can you presently identify with most in this psalm?
  2. What do you read of the psalmist’s emotions in the two questions he asks God in verse 2?
  3. Could you identify the pivotal point in this psalm? Why would the psalmist’s prayer in verse 3 change his emotional state?
  4. It would seem as though the psalmist could be satisfied, and the prayer ended in verse 4. What significant lesson is learnt by the addition of verse 5?

Personal reflection and Application

We are emotional beings. Neither suppressing nor succumbing to our emotions is helpful. But our emotions are ques, prompting us to re-evaluate our relational health in God’s presence, asking for his “light and truth” – his perspective on our circumstances, which brings us love, hope and joy.

Let’s pray according to Psalm 43. To help you put words to feelings, make use of this emotion wheel.

emotion_wheel1.png

  1. Prayerfully look at this emotion wheel, and name the most prominent positive emotion you can presently identify with. Who and what situation is related to this emotion? Tell God why do you feel this emotion. Find other emotions related to this situation to describe how you feel. What would you like God to do for you, and what does God want from you in this situation?
  2. Now, prayerfully name the most prominent negative emotion you can presently identify with. Who and what situation is related to this emotion? Tell God why do you feel this emotion, and what other emotions you also feel about this situation. Pray what you would like God to do for you, and what does God want from you in this situation?
  3. Pray with the psalmist for discernment of God’s presence and perspective: “Send out your light and your truth; let them lead me!”
  4. After meeting with God about this situation, how would you direct your emotions, as the psalmist did in verse 5? Speak to your own soul, and take charge of your emotions.