February 22, 2018

A Living Prayer

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

In this world I walk alone
With no place to call my home
But there’s one who holds my hand
Through rugged roads, through barren lands

The way is dark, the road is steep
But He’s become my eyes to see
The strength to climb, my griefs to bear
The Savior lives inside me there

In Your love I find release
A haven from my unbelief
Take my life and let me be
A living prayer, my God, to Thee

In these trials of life I find
Another Voice inside my mind
He comforts me and bids me live
Inside the love the Father gives

Take my life and let me be a living prayer, my God, to Thee

Alison Krauss and Union Station
written by Ron Block

  *  ~  ♥  ~  ✞  ~  ♥  ~  *

This beautiful bluegrass ballad is an affirmation…a declaration…a commitment.  It is the heart-cry of the songwriter to his God.  I love that he wrote, ‘take my life and let me be a living prayer…’ .  He recognized that, even though he had so much in his heart he wanted to commit to God Almighty, he still needed God’s involvement.  He knew he needed God.

The writers of the Psalms often communicated very similar thoughts.

Give ear to my words, O Lord; consider my groaning.
Give attention to the sound of my cry, my King and my God,
for to You do I pray.
O Lord, in the morning You hear my voice;
in the morning I prepare a sacrifice for You and watch.

But let all who take refuge in You rejoice; let them ever sing for joy,
And spread your protection over them,
that those who love Your name may exult in You.
For You bless the righteous, O Lord;
You cover him with favor as with a shield.
Psalms 5:1-3, 11 and 12 ESV

Let me hear in the morning of Your steadfast love,
    for in You I trust.
Make me know the way I should go,
for to You I lift up my soul.
Psalm 143:8

Keep and protect me, O God, for in You I have found refuge,
and in You do I put my trust and hide myself.
I say to the Lord, You are my Lord;
I have no good beside or beyond You.

I have set the Lord continually before me;
because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
Therefore my heart is glad and my glory [my inner self] rejoices;
my body too shall rest and confidently dwell in safety…
Psalms 16:1-2, 8-9

And as such it is with us, too. We cry out to our heavenly Father with our own words of commitment and declaration. Voicing the affirmation of our faith in Him…our trust and belief that He is faithful…our acknowledgment of our great need for our El Shaddai.

At the very end of the video clip above, is a quote from C. S. Lewis about prayer…

I pray because I can’t help myself.
I pray because I’m helpless.
I pray because the need flows out of me
     all the time, waking and sleeping.
It doesn’t change God, it changes me.

Take my life and let me be a living prayer, my God, to Thee!

A Living Prayer

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

In this world I walk alone
With no place to call my home
But there’s one who holds my hand
Through rugged roads, through barren lands

The way is dark, the road is steep
But He’s become my eyes to see
The strength to climb, my griefs to bear
The Savior lives inside me there

In Your love I find release
A haven from my unbelief
Take my life and let me be
A living prayer, my God, to Thee

In these trials of life I find
Another voice inside my mind
He comforts me and bids me live
Inside the love the Father gives

Take my life and let me be a living prayer, my God, to Thee

Performed by Alison Krauss and Union Station; written by Ron Block

  *  ~  ♥  ~  ✞  ~  ♥  ~  *

This beautiful bluegrass ballad is an affirmation, a declaration, a commitment. It is the heart-cry of the songwriter to his God. I love that he wrote, ‘take my life and let me be a living prayer…’ He recognized that, even though he had so much in his heart he wanted to commit to God Almighty, he still needed God’s involvement. He knew he needed God.

The writers of the Psalms often communicated very similar thoughts.

Give ear to my words, O Lord; consider my groaning.
Give attention to the sound of my cry, my King and my God, for to You do I pray.
O Lord, in the morning You hear my voice;
in the morning I prepare a sacrifice for You and watch.
But let all who take refuge in You rejoice; let them ever sing for joy,
And spread your protection over them, that those who love Your name may exult in You.
For You bless the righteous, O Lord; You cover him with favor as with a shield.
Psalms 25:1-3, 11 and 12 ESV

Listen to my words, O Lord, give heed to my sighing and groaning.
Hear the sound of my cry, my King and my God, for to You do I pray.
In the morning You hear my voice, O Lord; in the morning I prepare [a prayer, a sacrifice] for You and watch and wait [for You to speak to my heart].
Psalms 5:1-3 AMP

And as such it is with us, too. We cry out to our heavenly Father with our own words of commitment and declaration. Voicing the affirmation of our faith in Him…our trust and belief that He is Faithful…our acknowledgment of our great need for our El Shaddai.

Take my life and let me be a living prayer, my God, to Thee!

A Shield Of Faith

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

~  Listen while you read, please!  ~

Sometimes I’m battle weary; I forget to use my shield
The arrows pierce my armor and I stumble in the field

     A shield won’t do you much good if it’s hangin’ by your side
     Keep the shield of faith before you if you want to stay alive

I’ll think my life is over but the Lord He comes to me
He heals my wounded spirit and He sets me on my feet

Sometimes your battle weary but the war’s already won
Keep your head and hold your shield high ‘til your days of life are done

~  Songwriter: Ron Block / Performed by Alison Krauss and Union Station ~

* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *

Life throws many surprises at us on a daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly basis. It has its ups and downs.  We stumble, fall, get back up, and keep on trucking until we draw our last breath.  We as people have the freedom of choice…and this is where most of us often stumble.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might.
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers,
against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness,
against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
Therefore take up the whole armor of God,
that you may be able to withstand in the evil day,
and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore,
having fastened on the belt of truth and having put on the breastplate of righteousness
and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.
In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish
all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation,
and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God,
praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication.
To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints
Ephesians 6:10-18

We face a world full of temptation every day.  Satan is tempting us from the moment that we get up each morning.  We live around, and work with, people who do not believe in the power of God.  We can be tempted to doubt our own beliefs just by having intelligent conversations with other people.  We can even doubt our own beliefs when we see all the disasters and suffering on television or see it with our own eyes.

But without faith [it is] impossible to please [Him]:
for he that cometh to God must believe that He is,
and [that] He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.
Hebrews 11:6

If we put on our shield of faith every day, we are protected from the evil that will bombard us every minute.  Yet, when we do not wear our shield, we are subject to fall into temptation and sin.  We wear our shield with faith, and are rewarded with healing and peace.  God rewards our faith and seeking by being in a personal relationship with us. He protects us through our shields of faith.

* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *

Dear Heavenly Father, we pray that our shields of faith are strong and grow stronger with every passing moment.  Without You we would be lost to temptation and sin.  With our shields of faith, evil cannot pierce us or bring us down.  Thank You for never leaving us.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.