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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Monday, November 9, 2020  

Today’s Scripture Reading  |  Psalm 70

Be pleased, O God, to deliver me.
O Lord, make haste to help me!
Let those be put to shame and confusion who seek my life.
Let those be turned back and brought to dishonor who desire to hurt me.
Let those who say, “Aha, Aha!”
turn back because of their shame.
Let all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you.
Let those who love your salvation say evermore, “God is great!”
But I am poor and needy; hasten to me, O God!
You are my help and my deliverer; O Lord, do not delay! (NRSV)

Reflection
I do love Anne Lamott’s simple description of what prayer is: “Communication from one’s heart to God’s heart.” What prayers do you tend to repeat? Do you pray for wisdom, guidance, and forgiveness? Do you give thanks for your health, food, shelter, and clothing? Essentially our prayers are the primary way we connect with God and feel her presence and connect our heart and soul.

I imagine the easiest way to pray is to ask for help getting through the tough and scary times, like right now! Praying for help with our global pandemic and America’s politics monopolizes my prayers—and I’m sure an immeasurable number of others.

We are often good at praying for ourselves but perhaps not always good at praying for others and those we do not know. Praying can be hard before it is easy. I believe any prayer offered to God from a sincere and loving heart is beautiful. It’s not about a lot of words or eloquence; it’s simply about a connection with God.

Consider that God might want to answer someone’s prayer through you. Prayer is not a substitute for action. I imagine there is a good chance that someone we know needs our help and God’s love right now: maybe a shoulder to cry on, a reassurance that they matter and are valuable, or even a friend to pray with. Prayer and action are an even more powerful connection to God’s heart than prayer alone. O Lord, make haste to help me help others.

Prayer
Lord, we are poor and needy, and we so need your love and strength right now. Lord, please help me to want other’s prayers answered as much as I want mine answered. Lord, hurry to help us all. Lord, we need you. Lord, we cannot do this alone. Lord, please connect all of our hearts to yours. God, you are great! O Lord, please do not delay! Amen.

Written by Cris Ohr, Member of Fourth Presbyterian Church

Reflection and prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church

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