Praying 10 minutes today: WEDNESDAY 1/23

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

Make your ways known to me, Lord:
   teach me your paths.
Guide me in your truth and teach me,
   for your are my God, my savior... 
- Psalm 25

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

Teach me your paths:
   perhaps this should be my first and constant prayer, Lord...
I get lost so easily:
   I don't pay attention to the signs along the way;
   I lose my way;
   I make a wrong turn;
   I take a short-cut that in the long run
      becomes a dead-end;
   I sail through yellow lights and get caught in the red;
   I miss my exit and go too far and too fast 
      to get to where I want to go, 
         to where you call me, where you lead me...

Teach me your paths, Lord:
    make your ways known to me... 

How many times, Lord, has following my own sense of direction
   landed me in trouble with others and with you? 
How often have I got lost
   when I've decided my own compass is more accurate
      than the way your wisdom points to?
Can I count the times I haven't reached my desired destination
   because I took my eyes off the road and crashed
      into my own self-interest, my pride, my fantasies? 

Teach me your paths, Lord:
    make your ways known to me... 

I need your help, Lord.
I need  for you to put your strong hand on my shoulder:
   to turn me in the right direction,
   to turn my heart to yours,
   to turn my eyes back on the road I'm called to travel,
   to turn my mind back to your word and your truth,
   to turn me away from my own schemes and desires
      to see where your love is leading me...

Guide me in your truth and teach me, Lord...

Clear my mind of any nonsense
   any false direction I've accepted as the truth:
guide me in with your light and let your wisdom, not convenience,
   be the compass for my journey... 

When I move too fast for my own good and that of others,
   slow me down...

When my decisions make for reckless turns, grab the wheel
   and turn me in the right direction...

When my road is challenging, rocky, all uphill
   and when I look for short cuts or the easy way,
give me strength to travel where you lead me and show me
   how the high road is sometimes, often, the hard road
      but still the road that leads me home... 

Teach me your paths, Lord:
    make your ways known to me...
Your paths are as old as time, Lord.
For thousands of years your people have followed you
   and their feet have beat a path, have cleared a way 
      through the forests and jungles of every trial and problem
         humankind has ever faced...   

Yours is the path of truth, Lord, the way of wisdom.
Let me not assume too quickly that the path I walk
   is the one you've mapped out for me
but rather, teach me your path, Lord,
  and show me your ways: guide me in your truth...

Nudge me, prod me, push me in the right direction, Lord!
Open my eyes to see where you lead me,
   where your truth draws me,
      where the light of your word calls me...

Give me the strength and courage I need to walk in faith
   along the path you reveal to me,
even and especially when I'm not sure where you're leading me
   or why my journey takes me where it does...

In the quiet of my prayer, Lord, help me be honest
  and to face the times I've wandered from your path
and draw me back where I belong...

In the stillness of my prayer, Lord, help me hear you
   and hear the word by which you guide me to your truth
      and to the peace that your path promises...

You are near, Lord, no matter how far I have wandered:
   you have never left my side and stand ready, always,
      to show me once again the way that leads me back to you,
         my God, my savior...      

To ponder and pray over...
Do I know where I'm going?  where I'm headed? 
   do I know my destination?
Are there rocky roads I avoid?  do I look for short cuts?
   Have I come to a dead end? Who is charting, mapping my journey?  
   am I following the Lord or my own intuition and instincts?
When I'm lost, do I admit it?  Do I ask the Lord to find me?
   to set me back on the right path?
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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