40 Days of Lent – Reflections #3, A Series

This past week in The Prayer Journals’ 6-Week Lenten Series to spiritual awakening with daily fasting, prayer with a prayer journal prompt for personal reflection, there was much to pray upon – kindness, humility, judgement, forgiveness, enemies, and tragedy.
40 DAYS OF LENT - Series #3

A National Day of Prayer: COVID-19

As I draw closer to God so I can now Him better, there are times that I am dismayed. Sometimes it seems the more I get to know Him, the more I do not understand. At this point, I realize the distance between us. The goal of knowing Him better seems further from my reach. What makes these times unfamiliar is when I do not understand the tragedy around me like the current national emergency with the COVID-19 pandemic.

19 DAY - 40 DAYS OF LENT

Many people are naturally fearful of getting sick, fear of dying from this illness, and fear of being isolated from family, friends, and the outside world in their self-quarantine. When I read the entirety of 1 John, chapter 4, I am reassured beginning in verse 14 and ending in verse 19 (GW):

“We have seen and testify to the fact that the Father sent his Son as the Savior of the world. God lives in those who declare that Jesus is the Son of God, and they live in God. We have known and believed that God loves us. God is love. Those who live in God’s love live in God, and God lives in them.

God’s love has reached its goal in us. So, we look ahead with confidence to the day of judgment. While we are in this world, we are exactly like him with regard to love. No fear exists where his love is. Rather, perfect love gets rid of fear, because fear involves punishment. The person who lives in fear doesn’t have perfect love. We love because God loved us first.”

I hold on to my faith in Jesus Christ.

When I give in to something like the bad habit of fear, I soon realize the tremendous control is has over me. Even though I may say, “Oh, I will not give in to it,” I know I can’t when I willingly give in to it.

“Lord, help me to turn off the outside world when it panics and turn to You instead.”

I belong to God. God, who is in me, is greater than anything in this world. Misery comes when tragedy tackles me; and I become fearful. Whatever befalls me, God assures me He loves me. When darkness comes and I am isolated, I endure because I know God is with me. Whether I live another day to love, or die to live forever in love with Christ, everything is possible with God, Mark 10:27 (GW), who loved me first.

“God is not a God of disorder but a God of peace.” 1 Corinthians 14:33 (GW)

On this day, March 15, 2020, may we all turn to the God of peace and “trust the LORD with all (our) heart, and do not rely on (our) own understanding.” Proverbs 3:5 (GW).

When I pray

I encourage you to periodically refer back to the initial invitation for this 6-week Lenten series, 40 Days of Lent – An Invitation for further journal writing guidance for the daily prayer journal prompts for the reflection topic. Please know that I am praying for you in this spiritual awakening journey toward the Easter celebration. You may reach out to me by email at theprayerjournals.com@gmail.com.

Getting to know God

I have been writing in a journal since I was a young girl. In the last ten years I have kept a prayer journal to draw closer to God. Are you waiting for answers? Draw closer to God.

I hope you will join me daily on The Prayer Journals Facebook page during the Lenten season (and beyond) for spiritual growth. May I also ask that you share this blog post on your Facebook page and other social media, as well as, the daily Prayer Journals Facebook posts?

I appreciate your participation and value your prayers.

I am praying for you!

The Prayer Journals Facebook page provides prayer journal prompts and inspiration. Please join me there or on Twitter @prayerprompts. If you have a specific prayer request, please email me in confidence at theprayerjournals.com@gmail.com.

God’s Blessings to You,

Head shot 2019 - revised

Sheri

© 2016-2020 All Rights Reserved

Prompting by the Holy Spirit

Am I good enough?

If God loves me then I must be good enough, right?

Do I insult God when I think otherwise?

What is He asking me to do?

If my purpose is to serve out His Will with my gifts, then why do I continually question my ability? Has He not already given me the ability?

Do I hurt God when I do otherwise?

I Will Harvest What I Plant

“The person who is taught God’s word should share all good things with his teacher. Make no mistake about this: You can never make a fool out of God. Whatever you plant is what you’ll harvest. If you plant in the soil of your corrupt nature, you will harvest destruction. But if you plant in the soil of your spiritual nature, you will harvest everlasting life. We can’t allow ourselves to get tired of living the right way. Certainly, each of us will receive everlasting life at the proper time, if we don’t give up. Whenever we have the opportunity, we must do what is good for everyone, especially for the family of believers.” Galatians 6:6-10 GW

I have been in the process of writing a spiritual memoir over the last few years. It should be completed, but it isn’t because I keep starting and stopping. The message is not mine, but His message. My story would not be possible without the Holy Spirit leading me out of my place of hurt that is deep and dark to a higher elevation of forgiveness and purpose. Yet here I am again, on my knees, in prayer battling my doubts and fear as a writer.

God is and has been my energy, strength, wisdom and creativity. Whatever the ongoing battle, this overwhelming challenge of desiring it to get it right, or this personal crisis that appears impossible to overcome – God is with me. I allow Him to work on me and through me and as I will continue to trust His plan for this specific purpose and in His perfect timing to bring it to fruition.

Fear and Faith

“Blessed are those who are persecuted for doing what God approves of. The kingdom of heaven belongs to them. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you, lie, and say all kinds of evil things about you because of me. Rejoice and be glad because you have a great reward in heaven! The prophets who lived before you were persecuted in these ways.” Matthew 5:10-12 GW

FAITH over fear

Why am I afraid of in telling my story?

How will lives be changed by sharing my testimony?

How can I be sure this project is His prompting and not my own?

The place where I go to find the strength is in my prayer journals. It is a place that reveals my new Christ-like personality. My responsibility is to put on and wear that Christ-like personality each day and every night, cloaking myself in His peace and protection to pursue his purpose for me. I know I will get this story right. My faith has shown me how to step out of my anger, my fear, and all my doubt for page after page in my prayer journals tell the story of my Lord and Savior’s faithfulness in my life.

Psalm 61:1-4 GW

“O God, you are my God.
At dawn I search for you.
My soul thirsts for you.
My body longs for you
in a dry, parched land where there is no water.
So, I look for you in the holy place to see your power and your glory. My lips will praise you because your mercy is better than life itself. So, I will thank you as long as I live. I will lift up my hands to pray in your name.”

Childhood Wounds

My Prayer

Dear Lord, I give you all the praise and glory for plucking me from my place of hurt and setting me on top of a place where I can share Your love and faithfulness through my gift of writing. Lord, you have put a burden on my heart, and I pray You will open a door for me to accomplish Your will. I am like Nehemiah praying in desperation to respond to this burden that seems beyond my abilities. You know everything about me. You know everything about my situation. I am not asking permission, nor refusing Your calling, but in faith, asking for the power to proceed with success of this mission.

Thank you for all my gifts. Thank you for all who pray for me in this effort. Thank you for showing me the way through and around all trials and errors to the path you have set for me to accomplish all through Jesus Christ, and in His name, I pray. Amen

My Spiritual Journey

The Prayer Journal’s blog is my personal spiritual journey in conjunction with writing my spiritual memoir.

Please reach out to The Prayer Journals if I can answer any questions about keeping a prayer journal of your own. A prayer journal is an intimate communication between you and God. You don’t have to be an articulate writer. Use your gifts to communicate with God by perhaps with your talent as an illustrator, a painter, a poet, a lyricist or creator of scrapbooks. God enjoys hearing from you. I know you will be blessed! I know I am!

I enjoy hearing from you too! I’m praying for you.

Blessings on your day,

Head shot 2019 - revised
Sheri

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© 2016-2019 All Rights Reserved