Praying 10 minutes today: SUNDAY 9/30

Find a quiet time and place to pray... take a few deep breaths...
be still... and know that God is near...

A word to reflect on:   
The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed,
   a stronghold in times of trouble...
But why, Lord, do you stand at a distance
   and pay no heed to these troubled times?
-Psalm 10

(Before moving on to the reflection below,
   spend some quiet time with the scripture verse above...)

That sure is how it sometimes feels, Lord -
   that you're standing by, watching (or maybe not),
      in times of trouble...

Of course part of the problem is my praying,
   my hoping, wanting and wishing
      that you'd tame my troubles and calm my soul now
   - or at least sooner than later and the truth is, Lord,
      it's already later than sooner...

So that's why you hear me pray,
   "Where are you, Lord?  Have you forgotten me?"

Why do I wait so long for you to do
   what I know you can do?
Why do you wait so long to do
   what you can do?

I know you hear my prayer, you know my every problem.
What keeps your hand from healing me -
   or have I some how missed its touch?

Why leave me locked in chains of fear,
   shackled in confusion, imprisoned by my hopelessness?
I don't ask for much, Lord,
   I ask only for a share of what so many seem to have to spare:
      for the peace of soul that opens to the joy that's yours to give...

The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed,
   a stronghold in times of trouble...

Still, I put my trust and hope in you, Lord,
  and pray you'll be my stronghold while I wait,
     my refuge in my fear, my haven in my hopelessness,
         my safe harbor when my heart storm-tossed and alone...

I pray and trust you'll be my strength when I'm weak,
   my confidence when I'm tempted to give up,
      my light in the depths of darkness,
         my wisdom when I just don't understand...

And I pray for others who are troubled, Lord,
   who know the prayer my heart lifts up this day...

I pray for peoples oppressed in every way
   whose faith in you stands firm and doesn't fail:
      give me a share of their faith
         and be my stronghold, sure and true...

And if in fear and pain I've somehow missed
   how your healing hand has touched my deepest wounds,
let me see and know what you have done
   and begin to live where you have brought new hope and life...

In the quiet of my prayer, Lord,
   gently touch my troubled mind and heart
      and let me know you hear me,
help me trust that you are there when I can't find you,
   that you are present even when I'm most alone,
      that your heart holds a place for my heart
         and that in you I'll find my peace...

In the stillness, Lord, help me know you as my stronghold,
   my refuge, my haven, my safe harbor;
help me trust that in my troubled times
   you have time for me,
that you have power to save me from my fears
   and to heal my every hurt...
To ponder and pray over...
For what have I prayed for a long time?  
For what answer to prayer am I waiting?
Have I trusted that God is still with me while I wait?
Might there be help and healing that's come my way
   that in my fear and pain I've somehow missed?
Have I made my pain, and not the Lord, my refuge?
What will I ask of the Lord today?
From this prayer time, what word or phrase will I keep with me
   to carry through the rest of my day?

(After you spend some time with these questions,
   pray the reflection above one more time...)

Here are some tips for praying 10 minutes a day.  If you find these daily prayer reminders helpful, please let me know - and share them with others.  You'll find an archive of these daily posts here.


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