ETCHED IN PAIN
When the curtain of night falls around me, sometimes I can identify with Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. As the pain begins to ramp up in my various places of inflammation, I can almost feel the expression on my face begin to change. Any peace I may have felt earlier in the day has suddenly drifted away with the darkness. Then when I finally lie down in bed, my mind begins its roaring:
- “Where is that pain coming from?”
- “Why is that flame-thrower hitting my feet now?”
- “Oh no, here comes the throbbing again!”
Next, the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde argument begins:
- “Stop worrying! You know these pains – they are nothing new.”
- “Just quit dwelling on it all. You are too tired to care anyway.”
- “Why can’t I think any good thoughts now? Where is my peace??”
Finally, I realize the true questions that need to be asked.
INVITED TO PRAY
While I have been trying to drum up my peace and fight off my fears, Jesus has been waiting to hear my voice all along. HE is the one who will bring peace to me. So, I lie back on my pillow once again, but now the words have changed as I voice my prayers to the Lord:
- “Jesus, will you meet me here?”
- “Jesus, I long to know your peace within my heart.”
- “Lord, I am placing all of my questions before you now, and I will cling to your Word tonight.”
SOOTHED WITH HIS PEACE
Where my mind had been aching, only moments before, now it is aware of the flutters of peace. Jesus is the way to find the true peace of God.
And the peace of God,
which transcends all understanding,
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
(Philippians 4:7 NIV)
This month we have gathered four prayer prompts, one for each week of the month, with precious Scriptures to lead us into the Lord’s heart of peace. I am going to be pausing with them myself before I face my night’s darkness again.
PRAYER # 1
I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank you for speaking the truth about what we will face in this world. You have never minimized the trouble that this world brings to us – and yet you also never leave us alone during those troubles. You have overcome the world for us! Thank you for giving us yourself, for helping us to have peace in you. Will you stir our hearts to pray for those who have not yet found your peace? Touch our loved ones with the same peace you have given to us.
We pray in your precious name,
PRAYER # 2
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. (John 14:27)
Dear Lord Jesus,
We come to you and admit that we do feel so troubled and afraid as we try to face our days here. The pain and the heartbreak shout so loudly at us, and we have felt such a lack of peace. Help us to look to you and listen to the words that you have already spoken to us. Show us that it is your peace that we need. Oh, we pray for your keeping as we ask for Your perfect peace to flow over our hearts now.
In your name, Jesus, we pray,
You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. (Isaiah 26:3)
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you for the promise of peace you have spoken over us. Will You help to steady our racing minds and doubtful hearts? We are so easily overcome by the weight and pain of our days. We want to trust you again, our true and steadfast Father. Restore our peace in YOU alone.
In the name of Your son, Jesus, we pray,
PRAYER # 4
The Lord gives strength to his people; the Lord blesses his people with peace. (Psalm 29:11)
Thank you for the gifts of your strength and peace. Left to ourselves, we know that we are weak and so filled with worry. Help us to remember that you are with us and our loved ones through every trial. Help us to pray for their strength and their peace, even as we pray for ourselves. We rejoice and praise your name, oh Lord.
We pray in the name of Jesus,
Chronic Joy Contributing Writer
You can find Bettie blogging from her home in the far north suburbs of Chicago at bettiegsraseasons.com. She is walking forward with Jesus in the middle of her pain and weakness from multiple chronic illnesses. The beauty of nature as well as her family (including nine young grandchildren) are Bettie's joys. She and her husband have been married for over 40 years and take great delight in their weekend coffee breaks together.
Chronic Joy® devotionals are an invitation to take one gentle step, to pray in a comforting and familiar or perhaps new-to-you way, or to cry out on behalf of one precious life today … maybe even yours.
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