"The world is but a canvas to our imagination."
Henry David Thoreau
On Monday morning, the snow began, falling all day to cover streets, sidewalks, and the flowerpots on my patio. I watched the rising ripples of snow and wondered how long I would have to stay inside my warm and cozy walls.
Through Monday night, the road crews worked, pushing snow into piles on the corners, cleaning roads, walkways, and parking lots. I heard the crashing blades and grinding gears rumbling out of sight across the dark. In the morning I saw streets smoothed, slick and glittering, in the sun.
God often works that way within our lives. While we rest and wait and wonder, God operates behind the scenes. We hear the distant rumblings of change, trust that God is performing the needed work, then awake in the morning to find new roads cleared, new routes created where none had been before.
God opens the paths he wants us to take, clears some roads, and blocks others we should not travel. He indicates the safest routes available to us and steers us away from dead ends and blind corners. We can know that whatever the storm drops onto the road ahead, God will know how to make the way clear.
Today I pray you trust that God is clearing the road you should travel. Know that wherever you turn, God always sees what lies ahead.
Where is the road taking you today? Where have you seen God’s work opening paths in your life?
So many people I know could use a prayer today. For anyone who needs it, I offer this:
I pray you are confident.
“In returning and rest you shall be saved. In quietness and confidence shall be your strength” (Isaiah 30:15).
Feel certain that you are important to God and he has you in his care.
I pray you are trusting.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5).
Know that God has a plan for you and you can believe in him to complete it.
I pray you feel peace.
“And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Jesus Christ” (Philippians 4:7).
May God give you quietness and rest on your anxious and busy days.
I pray you find strength.
“He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might he increases strength” (Isaiah 40:29).
May you feel him give you power to persevere and succeed.
I pray you experience joy.
“Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full” (John 16:24).
May you be blessed with great happiness, today and always.
Please share a prayer with someone you know. I pray you are richly blessed each day.
What is your prayer this morning? What are you asking from God today?
Last Saturday my daughter and I headed to the mall for a day of snacks and shopping. We dodged roaming packs of teenagers and moms pushing strollers. We browsed through racks of clothes, cards, and candles, jewelry, shoes, and handbags. Somewhere between the shrieking crowd of kids climbing around the plastic play area and the shifting mass of humanity outside the Apple store, I considered that the noise and chaos of the mall has something to teach me about slowing down and enjoying life.
Move slowly and carefully, but always keep moving. In the mall, if we move too fast we collide with obstacles, too slow and we disrupt traffic. In life, if we travel cautiously and stay constantly in motion, eventually we will reach our destination.
Temptations are not always opportunities. In the mall, bold SALE signs called from every display window declaring bargains too good to resist; but when we looked at tags on individual items, the prices were not always the great deals we had hoped. In life, it is important to watch for signs showing us our options, but investigate each choice closely before deciding what to take home.
What we want most cannot be bought from a store. The message of the mall is that all we desire can be plucked from a rack and purchased at a cash register. On Saturday, I enjoyed spending time with my daughter, talking about her job, her hopes for a home, and her plans for the coming week. What I value in life is engaging conversation, some company on a busy weekend, and a caring connection with family and friends. We can experience much of life by visiting the mall, but the most valuable gifts are available to everyone for no cost at all.
What have you discovered in the crowded areas of your life? What are you shopping for today?
As I greet 2018, I’m looking forward to a prosperous year ahead. I know this will be a year of action and change, and I’m ready for all God has planned.
I pray 2018 will be a promising year for all my coworkers, family, and friends. I hope that we feel the presence of God and see the evidence of his power at work in our lives. I ask that the new year brings many blessings, much joy, and abundant peace to all who share our world.
I pray we trust in God’s timing for all the good that lies ahead, we rely on his power to give us courage, and we remember his strength is made perfect in our weakness.
I pray we grow in faith, in hope for the future, and in confidence as we take the next steps on the path ahead.
May you be generously blessed in 2018. Know God is with you every day of the year.
What is your prayer as you begin the new year? How will you know God is directing your steps throughout the days ahead?