Tag Archives: peace

Love in the Center of It All

Father, the day is ahead and there is much to be done. I would pray that You would guide my thoughts and my actions. May I squeeze as much from it as I possibly can. May I bring glory to You through it all. Amen.

Revelation 1:4-6 (<<click green)

Here I am, Lord, at the beginning of the book that speaks of the end. For those who have had any exposure to teachings from this book we think of many horrific and terrifying things – and those will come as we move forward. Even our own culture paints the apocalypse as being that way, full of evil, death, and destruction.

Lord, You will be our judge, there is no doubt about it. But first and foremost we have to get it in our heads that we were not created to be judged – we brought that upon ourselves – it was our choice, it has been our actions that have made judgement a necessity. In all of our existence from the beginning of time until the end of time, we have been created to be loved. Love is at the center of it all!

As we begin reading these verses we don’t see anger or judgment or condemnation. In the first words of John’s letter to the seven churches we see, “peace”, “grace”, and “love”. John 3:17 tells us,

“God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.”

God, You love us…period. The hymn “To God Be the Glory” has a line that clearly states Your intentions towards us,

“The vilest offender who truly believes,
That moment from Jesus a pardon receives.”

Peter in his second epistle addresses the question of scoffers who say, “What has happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again?” v4 and he answers the question in verse 9,

“The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.”

Lord, as I begin my journey into this book, help me to look at all that will transpire through Your eyes and with Your heart. May I be a man after your own heart as I interact with people of all races and creeds, for You love them all. Amen.

June 7th, Wed, 8:23 am

Peace on Earth

Good morning, Father! Thank You so much for the wake-up call! Your love never ceases to amaze me!

Such love, such wondrous love!
Such love, such wondrous love!
That God should love a sinner such as I,
How wonderful is love like this!                      ~ C. Bishop

Lord, as Karen and I sat down last night after a full day I introduced her to an a cappella ensemble of singers whom I have come to love. Their name is Voctave. We enjoyed listening/watching several of their songs on YouTube. One, in particular, touched me. Technically it is a Christmas song but its message rings true throughout the year. “This Is My Wish / Let There Be Peace on Earth” is its title (click on it to listen).

I know Your heart breaks, too, Lord, as You look across the world You so lovingly created and You see what we do to each other – the anger, the hatred, the violence, the back biting, the discord – it just never ends. It is rampant. And it is everywhere…even the church…

This past week’s events in Manchester come to mind – innocent people falling victim to distorted mindsets. My heart aches for all those whose lives have too quickly come to an end and their families who are left carry their loss for the rest of their lives.

We want peace. We strive for peace…but it is illusive. The enemy of our souls is about division, not unity. And peace will not come until he is vanquished once and for all. Peace in the here and now is found only in You and peace for all eternity is found only in You.

The Apostle Paul admonishes us in Romans 12:18,

“If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.”

Lord, may this be my prayer. May I also pray with St. Francis of Assisi, “Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.” Use me to touch Your world today. Amen.

May 26th, Fri, 5:06 am

Lead, Kindly Light

Father, it has happened literally hundreds of times over the past couple of years but every day I am amazed when You wake me. It is never with a jolt, leaving my heart pounding, but it always seems that I just open my eyes, glance at the clock and it is time for me to rise. And it’s not like I need up the same time of day…but You are faithful and You love me with a strong, consistent love. Thank You, Father.

I’m sure it comes as no surprise but I love music – all kinds of music! But one of my favorites has been a part of my life for my entire life and that is hymns. From the first time my mother carried me in her arms to church, hymns have touched me.

This morning after waking, before I even made it down the hall, a hymn popped into my mind – Lead, Kindly Light. The title itself was prompted by thoughts of You, Lord, for You are surely my patient, gentle guide through each and every day.

I’ve read where this song, written in 1833 by John Henry Newman, has been appropriately sung by many in dire circumstances and rightly so. But it is also a beautiful song that gives comfort along any part of life’s journey. The first verse reads,

Lead, kindly Light, amid the encircling gloom, lead Thou me on!
The night is dark, and I am far from home; lead Thou me on!
Keep Thou my feet; I do not ask to see
The distant scene; one step enough for me.

To me, it speaks of peace. I don’t need to see far ahead as my life moves continually onward for, Lord, one step [is] enough for me.” Lord, there is great comfort with You by my side throughout each stop of our journey together.

Mar 19th, Sun, 7:12 am

Plate Spinners

Father, it was wonderful having Massey home for almost a month! We cherished our time together. But as those times often do, schedules get scrambled. We were up later than usual which usually means we got up later than usual. Thank You, Father, for great moments together and for answered prayers for a safe journey home. As we all step back into normal routines help me to be driven to sitting down and spending time with You, each and every day. Amen.

1 Peter 3:10-12 (<<click here)

Using a quote from Psalm 34 Peter drives home the point of avoiding evil and seeking out peace. As my study Bible* alludes to, finding and maintaining peace is not an easy task. Peace is elusive and even when we do find it, even in the best of circumstances it is a delicate balance to maintain.

The idea of maintaining peace brings to mind entertainers who spin plates on poles. Each plate must be kept spinning or it will fall to the floor and break. One is not such a big deal once you get the hang of it but four? six? a dozen? The Guinness World record is 108! I can’t even imagine!

But how many times is keeping the peace the same challenge? Keeping everybody happy, not rocking the boat, not saying the wrong thing, doing all the right things, not doing the wrong things – it’s maddening! But as Christians, it is part of what we are to do.

Lord, this day may I be the best “plate spinner” possible. May I focus on people today, may I love them as You do. It quite often is a balancing act but may I be a man of peace in a world of craziness. And may I do so with Your wisdom, love, and strength. Amen.

*Live Application Study Bible, New Living Translation

Jan 13th, Fri, 7:09 am

Grace and Peace

I know You are with me, Father. May our time together this morning stoke the fire in my heart so that its warmth would radiate through my life this day. I pray that others would be drawn to You through me. Amen

1 Peter 1:1-2 (<<click here)

“May God give you more and more grace and peace.”

Lord, I pray that Peter’s request would be fleshed out in my life today and every day. I really see this as a “receiving” and a “giving” kind of thing.

From You we receive grace – that is Your unmerited (not deserved) favor. One of the many blessings You give us is not giving us what we truly deserve – death for our sin. Instead, You favor us with Your love and forgiveness. We would truly be lost without Your intervention in our lives. Thank You, Lord…

And because of Your gift of grace we now have peace with You. The second verse of the old hymn Hidden Peace, says it well.

Beneath the toil and care of life
This hidden stream flows on.
My wearing soul no longer thirsts,
Nor am I sad and lone.
There’s a deep settled peace in my soul
There’s a deep settled peace in my soul
Though the billows of sin near me roll     
He abides; Christ abides.                               -John S Brown

Lord, You have so generously blessed me with Your grace and peace; but as Your child I must pass them along to a world, devoid of them. Many in our world are at each other’s throats. Vengeance, hatred, apathy fill our world. Lord, enable me to give to others what You have given me. Make me a conduit of Your grace and peace to a world who truly knows neither. May I be generous and give freely to all, as You do with no bias or hesitancy. Amen.

Oct 14th, Fri, 6:45 am