Sunday, July 27, 2014

July 27. Fear Not. Isaiah 44, 45, 46, 47, 48

God formed me from the womb. No one on earth knows me like that. He wired me together this way. He will help me even when I am fed up with me. Isaiah 44:2
He'll pour water on thirsty real estate. He'll pour His Spirit on our children.

Fear not.

This God Who has formed us is here to redeem us. And that changes everything.

This God Who formed us is here to deliver us from idols we do not even know we have. With one hand we use a simple piece of wood to fuel a fire, to bake some bread. On the other hand, we craft that piece of wood into an idol to worship. "Is there not a lie in my right hand?" Isaiah 44:20.

And this Beautiful God confirms the Word to us,
fulfills the Counsel of His messengers. Isaiah 44:26.

COME BOLDLY: Timeless Prayers

Father, may we hear this day the Counsel of your messengers. Confirm Your Word to each of us through the spoken Word, the written Word, the Word made flesh in those You bring across our paths today. Open our eyes, our hearts to see what idols we have crafted that worship time and people and achievement and success and safety and comfort.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

July 26 "Raise My Valleys" Isaiah 40, 41, 42

An unassuming entry into our world through a voice. In a desert. In the wilderness. No fanfare. No fame. And the voice cries "prepare the way" in your wilderness. How can I this day prepare my own heart?    

Oh God, make me believe that even this day You are lifting up this valley we walk in; lowering the mountains we climb; and making this uneven ground level. Reveal Your Glory.  Isaiah 40:4

Thursday, July 24, 2014

July 25 "Spread the Contents, the Character, before the Lord" Isaiah 37, 38, 39

Smooth out the sheets and let God sit next to you.
Smooth out the paper and let Him read what alarms.
Smooth out the folding of your heart and let Him work.

Isaiah 37:14 - Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers, and read it; and Hezekiah went up to the house of the Lord, and spread it before the Lord.  May we do the same with every piece of news that comes our way.  Know it is the Lord Himself that envelops you on all sides.  

And Hezekiah prayed to the Lord: Incline your ear, O Lord, and hear; open your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear all the words of this letter blasting our God.  Incline. Open. Hear. See. Take action, O God against the contents of this letter spread before you.  

And we spread our own thoughts, words, deeds hurled against us by the enemy of our souls.   

COME BOLDLY:  Timeless Prayers 
Father, we spread the sheet before You.  Take these contents and bring glory to Yourself, and deliver us from ourselves.  

PHOTO:  Falling Stars. In the darkest of the night, you can see the stars the best.  The letters we read this day, may Your Glory be on them forever.  It's in the darkness we see the best.  

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

July 24 "Converting Grace" Isaiah 35, 36

We are on the right path to rest forever.  
All our sighs and sorrows will be no more.
We shall see the Glory of the Lord.  Isa 35:1

Strengthen our weak hands, O God,
Make firm our feeble knees.
Let's say to those who have anxious hearts,
No More, Fear Not, Be Strong,
And speak peace to our brothers. Isa 35:4

Our God is coming One Day with a vengeance,
and He will right all wrongs done against us.
Leave it in His Lap this day.
Our God will open blind eyes.
Unstop deaf ears.
The lame will leap and
the deaf will sing.

There will be a Highway there...
and we are on that highway today.
Headed in the Right Direction.
The Way of Holiness.
Isaiah 35:8

Converting Grace.
Those who are barren in a wilderness
will sing again, will love even deeper, will grow mighty themselves.
That is the Gospel we live for, the Day we long for.

COME BOLDLY:  Timeless Prayers
Oh God, help us see in our sighing that what matters so today will not be a thought in Eternity. Help us to prepare for the Day we live for---to be with You.  May we not miss the Grace of God as we prepare for Eternity - Jonah 2:8.

PHOTO:  Stunning sunset contemplating speaking to anxious hearts including my own. Let your words lay help upon the Almighty, the Might One, for your friends.  

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

July 23 "Be Our Arm" Isaiah 31, 32, 33, 34

Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help
and rely on horses,
who trust in chariots
because they are many
and in horsemen
because they are very strong,
but do not look to the Holy One of Israel
or consult the Lord!
Isaiah 31:1

This beautiful book counsels us in our deepest need where our plans to walk wisely fail.  Where our plans to be strong sink.  Where this Holy One is our strength, our everything.

COME BOLDLY:  Timeless Prayers
O, Lord, be gracious to us this sunrise.  We wait for you not for any man. 
"Be our arm every morning, our salvation in the time of trouble."
Isaiah 33:2.  And, You will be the stability of our times today, an abundance of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge.  Isaiah 33:6.  And we ask like the widow in Luke 18:3 who begged for help. 

PHOTO: On this beach, at this meeting, while I walk, be our arm in time of trouble. 

July 22 "Wonder Upon Wonder" Isaiah 28, 29, 30

Three Verses I have thought about for the past three decades.
The default of the Jews was to go to their neighbors if they needed help,
not to their God.
What about me?
I too have run to the arms of flesh for guidance, counsel, support.
May we deeply depend this day on the LORD our God.

In Returning and Rest
In Quietness and Trust
Shall be Your Strength.
Isaiah 30:15

The LORD longs to be gracious to you
He longs to show mercy to you.
He is a God of justice.
Blessed are those who wait for Him, not for any man.
Isaiah 30:18

And though the Lord gives you
the bread of adversity and the water of affliction,
Your teacher will not hide himself anymore.
Your eyes will see Your Teacher.
Your ears will hear a word behind you, saying:
This is the way, walk in it.
When you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.
Isaiah 30:20-21

COME BOLDLY:  Timeless Prayers
Father, we will find strength in affliction because You are there.  Help us this day in what you have allowed in your Providential Hand to escape the snares of the enemy of our souls.  Help us this day to find that quietness and rest in You in the midst of this world we live in.

PHOTO: A Rabbit Hole.  As we look deep into the holes of our own lives, may we sense Your Presence with us, Your Provision toward us, and Your Bending Low to us.

Monday, July 21, 2014

July 21 "Rain Righteousness" Hosea 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

They forgot their Maker and built palaces. But castles can crumble.
They played the whore, forsaking God. 
But wages buy things not peace. 
Their hearts were false.
But divided lives run separate tracks. 
Hosea 10:2

Rev 21 - God will make all things right.
But for this day, Sow for yourselves righteousness;
Reap steadfast love;
Break up your fallow ground,
For it is the time to seek the Lord,
that he may come and rain righteousness upon you.

Father, Hosea 12:6 sums my soul:
By Your Help,
I will return today
I will hold fast to love and justice.
I will wait continually for You.
And I will expect You to do much.
You are God!

COME BOLDLY:  Timeless Prayers
Oh Father, You are the One Who teaches us how to walk.  You've taken us up in Your Arms and we don't even know that we are healed.  You lead us with cords of kindness, with bands of love.  You ease the yoke on these clamped tight jaws of ours.  You bend down and You feed us.  So humbling. So beautiful.  That You, Omnipotent God would take such a posture for me.  With warm and tender Compassion.  You truly are in our midst and we cannot thank you enough.  Hosea 11:3-5

PHOTO:  God turns our world upside down when we return to Him.  He's always been there.  Leading with Kindness. Bending down with Compassion.  Directing our every step til we learn to walk.