All posts by TheSeekingOne

Enjoy the Moment

Dear One,

Right here, right now.   If I could give you one bit of advice, based on everything I know about you, this would be it:

“ENJOY THE MOMENT”.

If I could, dear Seeker, I would take you for a  long, slow walk just before sunset and have a conversation with you much like the one I had with someone yesterday and remind you of the simple things.

I know you want to trust God.  I know you’re tired of being stressed and fearful and feeling responsible for a future that you really have no real control over.   You believe that the LORD is Sovereign; so…

“The path of the righteous is smooth; O Upright One, make the path of the righteous level.” Isaiah 26:7

Relax

Take a deep breath.  You’re alive.

Don’t let disappointments and frustrations control your day.  Days may feel long, but life is short.

  • Internet connections will run slow.
  • Computers will crash.
  • Health will come and go and come again.
  • Appointments and deadlines will be missed.
  • Events will be cancelled.
  • Kids will break things.
  • Appliances and vehicles will break down.
  • Traffic will back up and you will miss a turn.
  • Things will be misplaced.

It’s going to be alright.  You already know it: God is on His throne, and you are not.  Do you really think any of those unexpected-to-you, no-surprise-to-Him, things can thwart the plans of the Almighty?

Even “big deals” are not “big deals” unless we make them into “big deals” by forgetting about our bigger than we know God who made all things.  And, if what’s on your mind seems like a big deal to you, it’s time you put things back in perspective and relax. 

God can handle it.  He has offered to take all our cares if we cast them on Him:  off your mind, off your back, and on to his.

Don’t be shocked by these not so strange and unusual happenings.  It is what it is, and it’s not the end of the world.  He’s got it covered.

  • Things are just things. 
    • Things can be replaced, if they even really need to be.  Most things we can live without, and often living with them makes our lives simpler.  No “thing” will last forever, anyway.  And, remember, “nothing (no-thing) can separate you from the love of God”.
    • Appointments can be rescheduled.  Plans can be altered.  And, you’ll never know what you really missed/avoided by an inconvenient divine intervention.  Commit your day to the LORD, interruptions and all.
  •  People are just people. 
    • Kids will be moody and grumpy and disrespectful every now and again, just like you were when you were in the “still becoming” season of life.   (By the way, you’re in a “still becoming” season of your own.) 
    • Spouses will say things that can be taken the wrong way.  (Whether they meant it that way or not, they need to be graced and forgiven, just like you do for your own “speak before you think/pray” comments.) 
    • Friends will irritate and offend.  (Need I mention how this proverbial shoe fits you, too?)
    • You are just a person.  And, if you’re replaying something from yesterday, ask forgiveness or forgive yourself, or let it go if that is what needs to be done.

So, whatever has a tendency to upset your day, look up and say, “Thank you.”  Maybe it is an opportunity to build your character or your faith, but maybe it really shouldn’t be a big deal at all.  Maybe it’s just something you should let go and over look.

“Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense.”  Proverb 19:11 (ESV)  … and I would add that faith makes us slow to fear, and it is also glorious to overlook an inconvenience or interruption or a disappointment, choosing to trust the LORD instead.

“Above all (NLT “Most important of all”), keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.”  1 Peter 4:8 (ESV)

“Bear with each other” (NIV)  “Make allowances for each other’s faults” (LNT)  Colossians 3:13

 

“The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter until the full light of day.” Proverbs 4:18

Rejoice

Your blessings far out number the things that you are calling “not a blessing” at the moment.  And, in the brilliant light of tomorrow, you’re “not a blessing” may wear a new label.

And, in the meantime, thank Him for the obvious.

“In everything give thanks…” 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Like one of my favorite old Evie song my parents played when I was a wee thing said, “Just be thankful for the good things that you’ve got…  The good things that you’ve got are for many just a dream; so be thankful for the good things that you’ve got.”

“give thanks for everything”  (NLT)  “always giving thanks for all things…”  Ephesians 5:20 (NAS)

Start thanking Him, now, in this moment.  Out loud, on paper, or in your head,… always, all through the day, for everything.   This is the secret of contentment and really living in and enjoying the moment.

  • for stained carpet, wobbly tables, leaky faucets, squeaky doors, pealing paint, …  find the beauty and the blessing in it, remember the memories made and the people you made them with…
  • the old neighbor with the long-long stories, for the town gossip, the kid with the runny nose and holes in his shoes, … for all the interesting people in your world.  Every book, every movie, and every life is better with unique and well-developed characters. (I’m thinking of Anne of Green Gables’s  Marrilla and Matthew Cuthbert, and Rachel Lynn, and Anne Shirley, of course.)

A bit blurry picture, but a favorite moment of my evening.  We stood silently for quite a while watching the doe on the middle of our wooded path.

P.S.

I thought you might like to know that I was on the receiving end of this conversation, and though Handsome’s words have been expanded upon by the Holy Spirit in the past 24 hours or so, the core wisdom and truth of his message to “enjoy the moment” are probably applicable to all of us women.

“ENJOY THE MOMENT.”

Tuck that away in your heart.

Slow down.  Look around.

This is where the LORD wants you to live… right here, right now, in this moment.  Trust Him.  God’s will for you is more than just enduring life.

He has yesterday and tomorrow all under His Sovereign reign, and He really does have “the whole world in His hands”… that includes you and me, sister…and your itty bitty baby, and my not so little 6’4″ baby

…and the doctors, and the politicians, and the teachers, and the bankers, the soldiers, the college professors, the tech support, and the UPS man,  everybody here, and everybody everywhere.

Knowing God is in control means we really can enjoy life, every moment, every day, and in every season.

It’s the enemy, not your heavenly Father, that would want you to shroud your spirit with gloom, worry, anxiety, fear, bitterness, doubt, insecurity, anger, frustration, hatred, resentment, tension, strife, or any other unsettling emotion that would smother your faith or douse your joy.

Remember who God  is, enjoy Him and enjoy this moment with Him.

He is “I AM”, living and ever-present.


Dear Seeking Friend,

If you’re reading this, I am praying for you.  May you remember that you are safe and secure “in Christ” and nothing can take you out of His hand; so may you rest peacefully in Jesus tonight, wake up refreshed  in Jesus tomorrow, and walk in abundance in Jesus all through the day.   May you see the handiwork of God all around you and hear the heavens declaring the glory of God when you look up.  May the Holy Spirit quiet your heart, calm your spirit, help you to slow down, and enable you to view your circumstances with an unhurried gaze.  May you have a twinkle in your eye and a happy expression as a result of your Heavenly Father’s love and the hope of eternity in your heart.  May you be a source of contagious blessing to others as you choose to enjoy your moments, one by one.  And, may you find yourself enjoying a divinely appointed walk with the LORD and hear Him say to you the words you are most needing to hear.

Keep Seeking Him… and enjoy the adventure, moment by moment.

beautiful: a temple, a body, a home

beauty –

defined by an 11 year old:  “feeling good about yourself; good looks”

Beauty is so much more than that!!!!

defined by Webster (contemporary):  "quality attributed to whatever pleases the senses of mind as by line, color, form, tone, behavior, etc."

nature 29 sunlight water

nature 28 lighthouse

defined by Webster (1828):  "an assemblage of graces, or an assemblage of properties in the form of the person or an other object, which pleases the eye... beauty consists in whatever pleases the eye of the beholder, whether in the human body, in a tree, in a landscape, of in any other object... beauty is intrinsic,... or relative,  a particular grace,... a particular excellence,... in person... in the arts,...joy and gladness, order, prosperity, peace, holiness."

beauty 34 of 29

Q:  Who gets to decide what is beautiful?

A:  everyone.

A:  you.

A:  me.

A: and God.

beauty 13 of 29

Your Temple, Your Home:  Your Beautiful Style

  • Modern,
  • French Country,
  • Old World,
  • Southern Coastal,
  • Western,
  • Rustic,…

beauty 14 of 29

Your Temple, Your Body:  Your Physical Beauty

  • blonde hair, dark brown hair; curly, straight, widow’s peak
  • fair skin, rich chocolatey tan; freckled, beauty marks, cleft chins
  • tall, petite; willowy, lots of curves
The LORD’s Temple, Your Heart:  Your Unfading Beauty

Beautiful friend, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL.

You are.

God says you are beautiful.

He sees you; He beholds you and calls you “beautiful”.

He made you uniquely, with preferences, with favorites.  And, His expert, all-seeing, all-beholding, all-knowing word on “Beauty” carries more weight than any myopic human opinion.

beauty 21 of 29

Beauty in My World

I’ve spent the last year focusing on the book of Hebrews as part of a group Bible study led by my husband, intensely studying the Tabernacle (and the Temples of Solomon, Zerubbabel, and Herod ) for a ladies’ study, and personally developing a thematic study related to running a race (on faithfulness, endurance, perseverance, discipline, freedom,…).  — In the most timely way, the LORD wove these studies together in to one deeper theme for me.

And, now, as I start a special year of “Beauty” with my maturing Little One, creatively pouring out these studies combined on my daughter, a fun “Girl-Time Study” for two, I’m hoping to go even deeper and more intentionally and practically apply all the knowledge I’ve accumulated about being the Temple of the Holy Spirit and discover more of what it looks like for me to be a beautiful and holy dwelling place for the LORD.

I am so looking forward to our Girl-Time!!!  Today, as worked on our outline for the year together, we read about  Esther and chose Esther 2:12 “…she had to complete twelve months of beauty treatments…” for our cover verse (Tomorrow we will make our notebooks/journals.).

12 months of beauty treatments, sounds delightful!!!  If it was good for a future queen, it couldn’t hurt two Princesses, daughters of the King of Kings.

We are counting our unit-study of “Beauty” as a part of our homeschool education, which helps me take our activities to a whole new level by outlining a framework schedule of Bible Study, Scripture Memory, Cosmetology (a study of cosmetics, What pre-teen wouldn’t love that?!), career exposure (Fashion and Interior Design, Fashion/Beauty/Image Consulting, Spa Therapy, Massage, etc.), and more.

I do hope to share with you some of the tools I’ve accumulated and favorite insights from the year, but don’t wait for me to post (As you probably already know, this season of my life is primarily about my family, and less about internet and blogging.). So start seeking for yourself!

  • find a theme that interests you
  • start a notebook or folder (physical or virtual)
  • collect quotes, books, magazine clippings, lyrics, outlines, charts…
  • memorize a few key verses
  • do a chain reference or word study in the Scriptures
  • about pray over it!!!
    • ask the LORD to guide you in a seeking adventure, and He will!

beauty 09

If you’re reading this,

I’m praying for you right now, that you will know deep in your soul who you are, how beautiful you are, and your great worth.  I ask the LORD to inspire you to be more creative and thrill in the wonder of who He made you to be with all your favorites, preferences, passions, and artistic interests.  May you find a unique way to seek the LORD for yourself and share what you find with someone special.

May you enjoy your journey as you keep seeking and finding, friend!

Marathon Training – a journey of faith and prayer

My prayer life has significantly chanced since November 27, 2016.

I imagine this unhurried and exhaustive way of praying about everything and for everyone that is a special concern or blessing to me to be more like how Jesus might have prayed when He slipped away to be alone with the Father.

IMG_0475

Last fall, I confided in my dad that I had been contemplating running the 25th Walt Disney World Marathon in 2018.  His immediate response was to mark the dates of the race weekend on his calendar with a note one year out (January 2017) to call and make hotel reservations.  What a supportive father!  Before I could even register for the race, he already had our rooms booked.

Oh, to be that kind of an encourager to my own children and to cheer them on in their “impossible dreams”!

IMG_0478
The images in this post are from the spiral notebook I made to contain all the information I collect pertaining to the Disney Marathon.

I have fallen back on his confidence in me several times since registering in February.

Since then, I have had a surgical procedure that corrected my heart issues which has allowed me to come off all my medications.  What a grace filled and faith building experience this journey has already been!  But, it also required me to take a significant break from running and then to begin again, building up my miles from a slow walk.

IMG_0500

I had to adjust to a normal heart rate, which felt abnormally fast when I  started to run, but with that came the blessing of higher blood pressure, which meant an end to the lightheaded and slightly tired feeling I had grown accustomed to.

Two months later, feeling unprepared and uncertain that I would finish before the course closed, I ran my fastest half marathon, thanks to a dear friend who paced me every step of the way, taking more than 10 minutes off my previous times.

IMG_0481

IMG_0483

What is extra special to me is how I ran it.  This was the first half marathon I ran without music.  Instead, I meditated on scripture and prayed.

This approach to racing began for me one Sunday afternoon while running at the school track.  I began to pray, but my mind was racing.  My rambling rabbit-trail conversation with the LORD felt rushed.  My thoughts hopped around like a frantic bunny chased by an unseen enemy, bounce on and off of every thought and concern as if to tag it with a blessing.

IMG_0490

I stopped.

Standing still for a moment, I asked myself, “What is your hurry?” 

I had planned to work on a run/walk ratio for an hour and a half to two hours.  I wasn’t in a rush to go anywhere and neither was God.

I pulled out my phone and wrote a start of a prayer to the LORD as I walked.  It began like this:

note prayer

And then I ran.  I ran and prayed about all that I wanted the LORD to be for me as I set out to pursue a dream.

After a while, I’d walk again, quiet my mind, ask the LORD to guide me in my prayers; type out the next theme that came to mind, and set off in prayer and in a run again.

IMG_0480

What developed from this list is my go-to prayer pattern for when I exercise.

  1. LORD, this is what I need You to be today…
    • LORD, be my Personal Trainer.  Push me, pace me.  Write my training plan and outline my cross-training workouts for me…
    • Great Physician, be my Physical Therapist.  Help me to strengthen my supporting muscles and keep me from injury…
    • Creator of all things, my body and all the food I will eat, be my Dietician.  Help me to know what to eat, how much, and when…  protein, carbs, etc…
  2. Head to Toe blessings (literally from my hair to my toenails)
    • my brain/thoughts – naming distractions and concerns
    • senses & emotions – starting by asking the LORD to sort out how I “feel” and then naming all five senses in this order:  sight, hearing, smell (concentrating on each one to take in my surroundings with thankfulness), taste (to even include the water/fuel I’ve carried along), and saving my sense of touch for last (focusing on the temperature, sun, and wind on my skin); which also brings me to…
    • my body – naming every organ, muscles, tendon, ligament, function, form, common injury, etc. that I know of (for an increase VO2 Max, to efficiently breaking down fuel into energy, from short to long muscle fibers, to thankfulness for a steady heart rate,…).
  3. Blessings on family and friends.
    • Since registering for my marathon, I chose a person to pray for on each of the 26.2 miles of my course.
    • My “mile 26” has more than one person.  Here I pray for all my friends who are training for a marathons.
    • Matthew DobsonMy “.2” to finish is for Matthew Dobson, an amazing Christian role model and the only American to win the Disney Marathon in 2004 with an amazing time of 2:27:58(Just as a reference, my best time for a half marathon was 2:26:26.    That was really moving for me, and a pretty fun number for someone dreaming of  running 26.2.)  Because his blog and books have  been a real encouragement to me  and  because I have tired to copy many of his tips, I also pray for him when I lace up my shoes.

I have also chosen a verse for each of the 26.2 miles, for a total of 27 verses/passages, which I turn into prayers for myself and for the person I am praying for.  I don’t always start with “mile 1” (the first person or verse), rather on different runs, I pretend to start a different mile on the Disney course.  It is also a fun discipline of my thoughts to think through the various parts of the Disney property I would be on and pray for the LORD to give me strength for each specific mile.

IMG_0506
I made prayer cards to give to the people I am praying for as a reminder that I am praying for them. The card has the mile, the verse I am claiming for them and for myself, and a few of my running prayer concerns.

At first my 27 scriptures were for memorization, but now I just take phrases and turn them into rhythmic mantra to meditate on.

For example, when I’m running up a steep hill and wanting to walk, I’ll tell myself to say the phrase 10 more times and count them on my fingers, “Strong and Courageous” (Joshua 1:9) or “Consider Jesus.  Do not grow weary; do not lose heart”  (Hebrew 12:3) .  Or on the final stretch, I push myself as hard as I can repeating, “I have fought the good fight.  I have finished the race.  I have kept the faith.” (2 Timothy 4:7)

Before I know it, I’m concentrating on that spiritual truth and the hill is behind me or I’m across that imaginary finish line.

IMG_0508
This is the list of verses I carried with me for my last half-marathon. The font is just large enough for me to read. On the back I have a copy of the course map. I covered it with packing tape so it would hold up under sweat and rain over all my training miles

(When I’m running I’m running with someone, I have a much abbreviated version of this.  It I’m running with a family member, I often pray aloud but keep it brief.  Though I sometimes pray with my friends and even share the verse I’m on if they’re interest, but usually I try to cover most the first two parts while I’m getting ready or while driving to meet them or before they arrive at my house.  Then, I mentally tuck in prayers for others when there are lulls in the conversation.  But, when I am running alone, this is my favorite mental discipline!)

I still use my prayer notebook first thing most mornings and other prayer tools on days I’m not running, but I feel such a new fellowship with Christ in this season of life.  I imagine this unhurried and exhaustive way of praying about everything and for everyone that is a special concern or blessing to me to be more like how Jesus might have prayed when He slipped away to be alone with the Father.

IMG_0498

Though it may sound very structured, it really pretty free flowing for me.  Having a frame work to get me started and to return to when I’ve reached the end of a rabbit trail in prayer is such a help to me.

If you’re reading this, I’m praying for you…

for your physical discipline to tackle your responsibilities while still taking care of the temple God has given you, for physical activities that you are able to do safely and enjoy, for the discipline to start and the perseverance to continue, for the mental discipline to make the best choices for your health, for spiritual disciplines that thrill your soul and that you can make intimately your own, for contentment without settling for mediocrity, for the God’s truth to inspire you in the areas you seem to have the most excuses, for friends to share with all the wonders you find as the LORD answers these prayers specifically and practically in your life.

IMG_0482

May the LORD help you to begin something wonderful today!

And, may He give you the desires of your heart as you delight yourself in Him!


The following images are included incase anyone is interested in the type of information I’ve gathered to help me mentally prepare for the race:

 

IMG_0489
The historical weather conditions for the previous Disney marathons (starting temperature, high and low for the day, humidity, and wind speed).
IMG_0484
Pace charts for various finishing times

 

IMG_0492
chart to log my miles and cross training exercise for the entire ye

IMG_0493

Maps of the Parks:

IMG_0494

IMG_0495

IMG_0496

IMG_0497

IMG_0504
a pocket in the back for loose papers and maps of the course from previous years
IMG_0487
pages to journal and log times from long runs
IMG_0479
LOTS and lots of quotes, many from Disney, but many more from famous athletes and trainers and others from articles and books I’ve read
IMG_0499
a list of thoughts for the night before the race, another for the morning of race day, and a page of thoughts that might be an encouragement when considering the second half of the race
IMG_0501
a small section for each mile of the race to log prayer request for the person I am praying for, details of that section of the course (what to expect, locations, elevation water, food, etc.), and any thoughts I want to journal that might pertain to this part of the race  (Several people have worn cameras running the marathon or in ride-a-long videos from wheelchair racers; so a lot can be learned about the course on the days I run indoors on the treadmill.)

I’m sure this might seem over the top to some, but I love to research and study everything that interest me.  This first marathon  is such a stretch for me (my longest run previous is only 14 miles); so the more I learn about it the more excited and less nervous I become.

I hope, as I share this side of my personality to you, that you are encouraged you to be yourself, live deep and indulgently enjoy what you love, and chose to become an expert in those things that interest you.

And, remember, you can make anything and everything a matter of prayer“Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.”  Proverbs 16:3

Keep Praying

“The Lord is not slow about keeping His promises, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing any to perish but for all to come to repentance.”  2 Peter 3:9

Yesterday, I had a Bible study with a neighbor that I’ve prayed for years and years and years to desire to have an intimate relationship with the LORD.  She sent me a text asking if she could come over and talk about the book of 2nd Peter that she is reading for a Bible study she is attending.

I’m sure you read that last paragraph as you would any other, comprehending and ready to move on to the next sentence, but I am stopped … totally in awe of the work the LORD is doing, literally humbled to my knees in worship,  near speechless, oh so thankful and full of praise for the answers to prayer that last sentence holds:

  1. my friend is reading the Bible  (a miracle)
  2. she is attending a Bible study (another absolute miracle!)
  3. my friend was wanting to come over to talk about a specific book of the Bible…  that  she is studying…  wanting to know how I study the Scriptures (Praise God!!!)

2pt 3

I showed her what I do in my personal Bible study time (the inductive method employed by Precept Ministries: marking key words with colored pens and pencils, finding themes for chapters, etc.). 

I think this was one of my favorite Bible study experiences ever.  I have led many studies in the past, but they are usually with seasoned older Christians or with a young person raised in the church wanting to go deeper.  But before she left, this dear neighbor told me that before this year, she had never even read the Bible, and until yesterday, she had never known you could study like this, much less read a book of the Bible multiple times and only want to read it again.

As I wrote in my journal, “Today was unlike any other! … Every thing was new.  She was hearing everything with the most attentive ears for the first time.  Her awe left me in greater awe of God and of the depth and treasure of this truly ‘awe-some’ text that  can sometimes feel too familiar.” 

2 Peter, the apostle Peter’s final words to us, only 3 chapters, and yet, so much is there!  (If you’re looking for a place to start a deeper study, why not begin with this brief book?  Precept has many free downloadable resources to help you get started.  Follow this link to download a  PDF with an introduction to 2 Peter with an observation worksheet to mark .)

2pt 4

Another friend and I pray together regularly and fervently for many friends, loved ones, and strangers that are far from the LORD, some who are as lost in sin as could possibly be and others who have lost their way and wandered far from God.

We have a couple people that we call our “least likely”, the people that it is difficult to even image them ever seeking the LORD, but that we can absolutely imagine the LORD seeking them.  When I think of the transformation occurring in my neighbor’s life after so many years of praying and “planting seeds”, I am hopeful for even the “least-likely of these”.  God does not work on our timetable, but with Him, anything is possible!

How about you?

Does someone come to your mind when you think of an “impossible case”?  Were you once an “impossible case”?  With Christ, we know that there’s no such thing!

If there is someone who is heavy on your heart?   Don’t give up on them!  As long as they are breathing, there is hope.

Don’t get discouraged! That is not of faith, and it is  not from the LORD!  Keep loving them.  Keep serving them.  Keep praying for them.  They may one day become a source of great joy and sweet fellowship, and all the glory will go to God.


If you are reading this, I am praying for you that you will either choose to:

  • go deeper into the Word, discovering how vast the Scriptures are with practical insight and truth and how deep the Father’s love is for you,
  • OR that you will invest your life in befriending someone who needs a friend and pray for an opportunity to lead them to Jesus.

(Sometimes the best “witnessing” is done when you’re just not in a hurry, genuinely loving someone over a decade, of talking about life and offering prayers and encouragement while cleaning out a refrigerator, folding laundry, going for a long run or walk together, making a craft, visiting while popping in with a baked treat, or just being there for support during a crisis or heartache.)


For more information on Inductive Bible Study, go to Precept.org.   There you can also look for a Bible Study group near you.  Or if, like me, you live in a rural area where a study is not offered, you can find out about attending a weekend of training and then start a Bible Study group of your own.

“and give Him no rest”

Do you realize that the LORD gives us permission, actually encouraging us in both the Old and the New Testament, to “pester Him” with our petition until we have our answer?

(Not to ramble on and on with meaningless and vain repetitions.  But to ask, seek, knock, and keep on asking, seeking, and knocking in persistent, unrelenting faith?  Absolutely!!!)

see the parable of the unjust judge and the persistent widow – Luke 18:1-8,  and Christ’s instructions on how to pray and the example of the pestering friend with unexpected guests Luke 11:1-13 (especially v. 8-10)

Today I want to challenge you to be BOLD in what you ask.  Open your Bible, put your finger on the specific verse you sense the Holy Spirit has brought you to, and hold it out to the LORD.  Remind Him of what He has said, what He has done in the past, and what He said He would do…

“If you ask anything in my name, I will do it.”  John 14:14 

So, what is the most earnest desire of your heart?

I know several people who, like me, when asked this question, without hesitation the name(s) of someone specific comes to their lips, someone who has wandered from the truth they were taught in their youth.

It reminds me of Israel, and I feel a kinship with the LORD’s passion for Jerusalem.

The prophet Isaiah’s concern and passionate desire was for Zion and the peace and glory of the LORD to be reestablished in Jerusalem.

He said, “For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not keep quiet, until her righteousness goes forth like brightness, and her salvation like a torch that is burning.”  (62:1, NAS)

There are a handful of places (Israel is one of them, also America, North Korea, Guatemala, India…) and people (relatives, the children of dear friends, neighbors, friends from my youth, …) that are especially near to me heart.  The LORD has so woven them into the fabric of my life that their I wandering and suffering feels like a constant tugging on my soul that I can’t ignore.  To imagine them separated from God feels like a ripping of my heart.  This agony I feel for them is to know how the LORD feels for Jerusalem, a shared suffering with Christ.

I desperately want their righteousness to be going forth, shining brightly in the world!  I want their salvation to be like a burning torch, lighting their way and bringing light to others everywhere they go!

So, I will pray like the appointed watchmen standing on the walls of Jerusalem,

“…All day and night they will never keep silent.  You who remind the LORD take no rest for yourselves; and give Him no rest until He establishes and makes Jerusalem a praise in the earth.”  (62:6-7, NAS)

When a section of scripture resonates with me, gripping me as I read it so that I keep coming back to it again and again, I take this as a prompt to start turning the passage into a prayer either for myself or someone else or even simply echoing it back to the LORD in thanksgiving or praise.

I want to give you an example as I pray for someone heavy on my heart today.

Before you read any further, ask the LORD to put someone on your heart, and then read these paraphrased verses as a prayer to God on their behalf.  (You might want to grab your Bible and follow along so you can see exactly what how The Word became my words prayed back to Him.)

Knowing how strongly the LORD feels about Israel/Jerusalem/Zion and His love for the world/the lost is the common ground that we stand on as we begin to beg His mercy and grace to move on behalf of those we desperately love.

A Prayer for the one I love not living in victory:

(a specific request from each of the 12 verses in Isaiah 62)

LORD, I beg You,

  1. make his/her righteousness shine bright as the dawn, make his/her salvation passionately burn like a torch
  2. may the world see the righteous and glory of Christ in his/her life, so transform him/her that all his/her friends give him/her a new nick-name (a special one with meaning that is picked out by You)
  3. may he/she be like a crown/royal tiara of splendor/beauty for You in the palm of Your hand
  4. instead of living as “forsaken” or “desolate”, may he/she know that You delight in him/her and live as “God’s Delight”/ the “Bride of Christ”
  5. may he/she be joined to You (like a couple united forever in marriage), finding his/her joy in You as You rejoice over him/her
  6. may I stand with You, like an appointed watchman, watching over him/her in prayer (watching, hoping, anticipating an answer from You), I will call on You continually on his/her behalf and never keep silent, may I not take a rest or a break or grow weary in the waiting
  7. I intend to not give You any rest until the day when You establish him/her and make him/her a source of praise to Yourself in this world
  8. LORD, when you swear by Your right hand and Your strong arm (by all the rightful power and authority of Your position as Creator and Ruler of the Universe), it is done.  So, I ask You to make him/her fruitful and his/her work productive and not let the enemy take any of the eternal harvest that You’ve meant to be his/hers
  9. may he/she enjoy a harvest of goodness in his/her life and give You all the praise for it, and may he/she celebrate all that bounty in Your presence
  10. LORD, make a way for him/her to return to You.  Let me go ahead of them calling out and clearing a way from him/her in faith.  Remove any obstacles in his/her way.  Put Your banner over them, and with You, let me lift high a flag for them, claiming them as Yours, and then may he/she raise up that standard over his/her own head declaring that he/she is forever Yours
  11. LORD, You have proclaimed “salvation is coming” and said that You are coming with a reward and recompense.  May Your salvation come to him/her!  May he/she being looking for Your coming and someday see Your reward!
  12. may he/she be one of those who are called “the holy people, the redeemed of the LORD”, may he/she be called “sought out” and “not forsaken”

If You seek them out, LORD, I know Your call is irresistible.  Pursue them.  Stir them to pursue You, to seek You, and to love You because You first loved them.


If you’re reading this, I am praying for your encouragement to persevere in prayer for those you love and for the LORD’s love and grace to be poured out on the person you were thinking of as you read this post today.  LORD, hear our prayer! 

(I was discouraged a few weeks back in praying for the person on my heart, but all that changed when I later realized how many people were praying the same thing I was praying for this particular person.   The LORD had put that person on all of our hearts!  — We are not in this alone.  We are co-laborers with Christ.  The Holy Spirit is at work, and God hears the prayers of His people.  —  If you want, post a name/or a nick-name for a person you are praying for in the comment section below so that others who read this will join in praying for them.  Or, add the word “anonymous” and I will pray for them but not post it for others to see.)