Thank you so much for all you are. Thank you for hands big enough to craft a universe and small enough to cradle our hearts. Thank you, Father, for the comfort in your invisible touch and the assurances you've given us because you know we need them. You are all things holy, all things good. If there's beauty in the world, it's your fingerprint. I thank you so much, Lord, for giving us the eyes, both spiritual and physical, with which to see it.
Father, my heart aches today for all the need I see in those around me. For those who have lost people dear to them through accident, illness, or violence. For those who are suffering from debilitation, who are daily in pain. I pray for those who are struggling to get through another day, be it because of physical trial or mental fatigue.
Thank you so much, Father, for all you've done in my life this past year. I look back and have to shake my head in wonder at how far my path has come. Yet when looking, I also see the pain of those I love most. And it brings tears to my eyes. Do I understand why it happens this way, that my moments of great joy are shadowed by their loss? Of course not. It doesn't seem fair that we can't be in times of rejoicing together. Do I want their situations to change? So much, Lord, yes!
But I'm trusting. I'm trusting that this, too, is part of your plan. I'm trusting that the darkest valley is cast in the shadow of your wing, that the widest prairie is your hand stretched out. I'm trusting, Lord, and I'm yearning. Yearning upward, onward, toward you.
For them. My prayers are often for myself, because, well, I know how much I need you. I know how everyday successes rely on you. I know that those days I forget to put it all in your hands, I'm quickly throwing mine up in frustration. But today, Lord, the ache in my heart is for my friends and loved ones.
For each of them today I pray a special blessing. A soft word of encouragement, a loud shout of joy. I pray that in some way only you can anticipate and devise, they are lifted up today. Lord, edify them, help us to edify each other--whisper in each of our ears how we can build up those we love. And then, oh God my God, whisper confidence into their hearts. Pour your water upon them to make the seeds of comfort grow.
Frail as our eyes may be, we want to see, Lord. We want to see why we've been put in the places we have, why things don't work as we should. We want to see where we're going. Where you can, give my loved ones a glimpse--just a glimpse of your guidance through these times, of the light waiting at the edge of the shadow. Where you can't, breathe into their spirits, Father, that comfort that comes on the sweetest of nights, when being unable to see makes us all the more aware of the sound of your voice. Call to them in that whisper, speak peace to them.
Thank you, Father, for being that water that nourishes us and makes us grow. Thank you for being the fire that cleanses us, that lights us with your spirit. Thank you for being the wind that breathes life into us. Thank you for being the earth in which we're grounded. Thank you, Lord God, for being all, for being every, for being the One to whom we can turn.
And thank you for these amazing, beautiful people you've put in my life. So often they are what lights hope in me when frustration or disappointment plagues me. Let it be their turn today, God, to receive that encouraging embrace. Lift them up and help them soar...all the way to their place of peace.
In the name of your precious Son,