Posts Tagged ‘Morning Prayer’

Morning Prayer for Wednesday, November 14, 2018 — I pray that I may try to follow God’s design today

November 14, 2018

Isn’t It God’s Job to Judge Others?

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A better way than judging people is to look for all the good in them. If you look hard enough and long enough, you ought to be able to find some good in every person.  My job is to try to bring out the good, not criticize the bad. Everyone is used to being judged and criticized. That has never helped anyone.  We tell people they can change. We try to bring out the best in them. We encourage their good points and ignore their bad points. People are not converted by criticism. Do I look for the good in people?

Meditation for the Day

There must be a design for the world in the mind of God. We believe His design for the world is a universal fellowship of men and women under the fatherhood of God. The plan for your life must also be in the mind of God. In times of quiet meditation you can seek for God’s guidance, for the revealing of God’s plan for your day. Then you can live this day according to that guidance. Many people are not making of their lives what God meant them to be, and so they are unhappy. They have missed the design for their lives.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may try to follow God’s design for today. I pray that I may have the sense of Divine Intent in what I do today.

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Isn’t It God’s Job to Judge Others?

Judging Others – You Be the Judge

Opportunities for judging others are readily available. A summons for jury duty expects us to impartially judge the culpability of an individual. During an election we judge, by comparison, each candidate’s integrity. Televised court cases entertain, while allowing the viewer to “judge” the defendants or the wisdom of the judge’s verdict. Pronouncing judgment upon others seems human nature!

Our fondness of judging others extends far beyond legal or civic matters. People are especially good at speaking out against all kinds of things they find offensive. Sadly, their focus may center on the person, instead of the action.

Jesus knew humans would struggle with judging and He contained a stern warning in His Word: “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye” (Matthew 7:1-5).

This verse does not mean that we should never make judgments. Obviously, we make judgments every day. We judge between right and wrong, dangerous choices from safe ones, etc. Jesus is cautioning us to not judge others in a hypocritical way. He is telling us to take the log out of our own eye so that we can help the other person. We shouldn’t be habitually critical of someone when our own sin needs corrected as well.

What else does the Bible say about judging others?

  • Don’t judge anyone by your human limitations. Only God’s judgments are flawless (John 8:15-16).
  • Don’t be quick to condemn someone else’s actions. God is patient, but He doesn’t overlook anyone’s disobedience, especially yours (Romans 2:1-5).
  • Don’t attack each other. Try to be a good example so others won’t copy your bad behavior (Romans 14:13).
  • Don’t speak destructive things about others. Are you qualified to perfectly judge someone else? (James 4:11-12).

Judging Others – You Lose

By judging others in an unbiblical and hypocritical way, we pay an enormous price. In every case, our choice to criticize another person causes severe damage in our lives. Ridiculing others exposes us to the righteous judgment of God, and we bring more suffering on ourselves by our complaints against one another than we are aware of (James 5:9). Judging people and accusing them is what Satan does (Revelation 12:10).1 In addition to ruining other people’s lives, judging others in an unbiblical way:

  • Robs us of hope – Our critical spirit steals our joy and peace, making it impossible to trust in God’s power (Romans 15:13).
  • Attempts to question God’s authority – When we judge another, our sins become magnified in God’s eyes (John 8:3-7).
  • Pollutes our heart – When we judge, we often intend malice, while slandering another person (Mark 7:20-23).
  • Makes us vulnerable to hatred – We plant seeds of unforgiveness and condemnation that take root in our hearts and minds (Proverbs 6:16-19).
  • Places us in opposition to God – Our refusal to humble ourselves cultivates pride (1 Peter 5:5-6).

Judging Others – On the Other Hand

Just as believers are not to condemn others, we are not to ignore sin.2 In a sense, this requires the act of judging others in a biblical way. It is important to know the difference between the judging mentioned in Matthew 7:2-5 and the righteous kind of judgment that comes with discernment. John 7:24 says, “Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly.”

If a believer sees another believer sinning, he is instructed to confront the person in a respectful and loving way. Matthew 18:15-17 says, “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.”

The ultimate goal of confronting the person is to bring repentance. In this sense, we are called to judge sin—always with the goal of repentance and reconciliation.

“Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction” (2 Timothy 4:2). God commands believers to point out the truth in hope—and with Christ-like compassion—bringing repentance and restoration to the sinner (James 5:20).

As Christians, with all our imperfections and failures, God chose to see us as holy and blameless (Ephesians 1:4). God also gives us a choice.

https://www.allaboutgod.com/judging-others.htm

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Morning Prayer for Tuesday, November 13, 2018 —

November 13, 2018

Who am I to judge other people? Have I proved by my great success in life that I know all the answers? Exactly the opposite. At one point my life could be called a failure. We may make all the mistakes one could make. I took all the wrong roads there were to take. On the basis of my record, am I a fit person to be a judge of other people? Hardly. I have learned not to judge people. I am so often wrong. Let the results of what they do judge them. It’s not up to me. Am I less harsh in my judgment of people?

Meditation of the Day

In our time of meditation, we again seem to hear: “Come unto me, all ye that are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Again and again we seem to hear God saying this to us “Come unto me” for the solution of every problem, for the overcoming of every temptation, for the calming of every fear, for all our need, physical, mental, or spiritual, but mostly “come unto me” for the strength we need to live with peace of mind and the power to be useful and effective.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may go to God today for those things, which I need to help me live. I pray that I may find real peace of mind.

From: Twenty Four Hours a Day

Related:

Third Step Prayer

God, I offer myself to Thee-
To build with me
and to do with me as Thou wilt.
Relieve me of the bondage of self,
that I may better do Thy will.
Take away my difficulties,
that victory over them may bear witness
to those I would help of Thy Power,
Thy Love, and Thy Way of life.
May I do Thy will always!
Thank you, God, Amen!

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Lord, I ask your pardon, I have sinned again

Lord, I ask your pardon, I have sinned again. This, alas, is what I am capable of doing on my own! But I abandon myself with confidence to your mercy and your pardon, I thank you for not allowing me to sin even more grievously. I abandon myself to You with confidence because I know that one day you will heal me completely and, in the meantime, I ask you that the experience of my misery would cause me to be more humble, more considerate of others, more conscious that I can do nothing by myself, but that I must rely solely on your love and your mercy. Amen.

By Jacques Philippe

Searching for and Maintaining Peace By Jacques Philippe

Morning Prayer for Monday, November 12, 2018: Admitting Our Helplessness Before God

November 12, 2018

You must admit your helplessness before your prayer for God will hear help. Your own need must be recognized before you can ask God for the strength to meet that need. But once that need is recognized, your prayer is heard above all the music of heaven. It is not theological arguments that solve the problems of the questing soul, but the sincere cry of that soul to God for strength and the certainty of that soul that the cry will be heard and answered.

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Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may send my voiceless cry for help out into the void. I pray that I may feel certain that it will be heard somewhere, somehow.

From Twenty Four Hours a Day

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Related:

Sir Anthony Hopkins at the 11th annual Leap, Leadership, Excellence and Accelerating Your Potential conference
Sir Anthony Hopkins shared advice with students at the University Of California.  GREG DOHERTY / GETTY IMAGES

Sir Anthony Hopkins opens up on alcohol battle

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-wales-south-west-wales-44977801

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Powerlessness is a gift

By Diane Scholten

For me, that central river to the sea is The Twelve Steps.  Oh, there are other rivers (Buddhism, a lifelong connection to Mother Mary, etc.), but the 12 Steps are the core.  It’s my opinion that Bill Wilson was divinely inspired. Each time I read his writings (and I do so very often) I am amazed at the wisdom he coagulated into one place.  He truly did provide a guide for living.

Right now I’m reading a book on the 12 Steps:  Recovery:  The Twelve Steps as Spiritual Practice by Rami Shapiro.  Rami is a rabbi and a professor of religious studies. This book incorporates teachings from world religions into commentary on the twelve steps, as well as Rabbi Shapiro’s own thoughts.

I just finished reading Step One “The Gift of Powerlessness” and found it insightful, and challenging and a good springboard for my own thoughts on Step One.

Step one is the door in.  It’s the beginning.  It’s the “I surrender” that gets us to 12 step programs.  For though many truly feel it’s the gift of the lifetime, I don’t think anyone feels that way on day one.  Because what gets most of us into 12 steps programs is this:

“We admitted we were powerless over {alcohol, food, people, gambling, etc —- LIFE} and that our lives had become unmanageable.”

Yikes!  especially in America – who on earth wants to say “Hey, my life is spinning out of control and I’m clueless on how to stop that.”

Pretty much no one.

“The wording of Step One masks the deeper discovery we make when we actually take the Step.  Step One says we are powerless over our addiction.  It doesn’t say we are powerless over life.  Yet as we begin to face the fact of our powerlessness, we discover that, in fact, we are powerless over life.  We cannot control what happens to us. All we can do is work with what happens moment to moment.” – p. 2

Wow.  So that gets even scarier.  I still want to think that I do indeed have some control – me, with my lists, my goals, my plans, my Hard Work.  I mean really, doesn’t Hard Work count for SOMETHING?

“The fundamental and paradoxical premise of Twelve Step recovery as I experience it is this: The more clearly you realize your lack of control, the more powerless you discover yourself to be.  The more powerless you discovery yourself to be, the more natural it is for you to be surrendered to God.  The more surrendered to God you become, the less you struggle against the natural flow of life.  The less you struggle against the flow of life, the freer your become. Radical powerlessness is radical freedom, liberating you from the need to control the ocean of life and freeing you to learn how best to navigate it.”

Now THAT is the gift of powerlessness.  Freedom and liberation – with that Rabbi Shapiro is talking my language.

When I discovered this spiritual path, I was sharing my non-joy about it with my brother (as I said, this is not a path one enters joyfully, and often not willingly).  Wise George said “oh, good – now you can stop being The Doer of All Things.”

Uh, yeah – I guess my younger siblings may have had my number.  Because from age 3 on, I truly believed that if I tried harder, worked harder, was tougher – then I could keep chaos at bay.

I could not.

The first sentence of this book is:

“Here is the heart of Twelve Step recovery – quit playing God!”  He goes on to say that what that means is to quit pretending that life is controllable.

In fact, Shapiro states that it’s THIS addiction – ‘the obsessive quest for control’ – rather than the substances, activities or persons to which we THINK we are addicted – that is the real problem.  Most people in recovery get that it is their thinking that is the real problem – but this specificity  – that it is our thinking we can control things – was a new thought to me.

“…if you think you can control life you will act to control life, and doing so will invite consequences that will be excruciatingly painful to you and to those who about you.”

I’ve thought about step one, about powerlessness, about the crazy thinking that underlies addiction and chaos.  Thought about it and read about it for a very long time.   And I’ve always known step three (we’ll get to that later) is about giving up control – thus the scariest step for me.  But thinking about step one in a new way has been thought-provoking.  I find that The Doer of All Things feels a bit panicky about it initially. And then, yes, if I can actually believe that life is uncontrollable BY ME, but that there IS a unifying force-field, a sea to which this river runs, and that it is good – well, I can settle back into the raft, no matter how wild the ride and trust that the Sea is calling to me. Calling me home.  Where I already am.

What if Bob Marley was right?

“Don’t worry
about a thing
Cuz every little thing
is gonna be alright.”

Powerlessness as a gift.  It just may be.  What do YOU think?

https://dianescholten.wordpress.com/2012/06/03/the-gift-of-powerlessness/

Morning Prayer for Sunday, November 11, 2018 — I am not so important after all

November 11, 2018

When I think of all who have gone before me, I realize that I am only one, not very important, person. What happens to me is not so very important after all. I have learned to be more outgoing, to seek friendship by going at lest halfway, to have a sincere desire to help. I have more self-respect now that I have less sensitiveness. I have found that the only way to live comfortably with myself is to take a real interest in others. Do I realize that I am not so important after all?

Meditation for the Day

As you look back over your life, it is not too difficult to believe that what you went through was for a purpose, to prepare you for some valuable work in life. Everything in your life may well have been planned by God to make you of some use in the world. Each person’s life is like the pattern of a mosaic. Each thing that happened to you is like one tiny stone in the mosaic, and each tiny stone fits into the perfected pattern of the mosaic of your life, which has been designed by God.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may not need to see the whole design of my life. I pray that I may trust the Designer.

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Third Step Prayer (Alcoholics Anonymous)

God, I offer myself to Thee-
To build with me
and to do with me as Thou wilt.
Relieve me of the bondage of self,
that I may better do Thy will.
Take away my difficulties,
that victory over them may bear witness
to those I would help of Thy Power,
Thy Love, and Thy Way of life.
May I do Thy will always!
Thank you, God, Amen!

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Lord, I ask your pardon, I have sinned again

Lord, I ask your pardon, I have sinned again. This, alas, is what I am capable of doing on my own! But I abandon myself with confidence to your mercy and your pardon, I thank you for not allowing me to sin even more grievously. I abandon myself to You with confidence because I know that one day you will heal me completely and, in the meantime, I ask you that the experience of my misery would cause me to be more humble, more considerate of others, more conscious that I can do nothing by myself, but that I must rely solely on your love and your mercy. Amen.

By Jacques Philippe

Book: Self-Abandonment to Divine Providence

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“Self-Abandonment to Divine Providence” by de Caussade — the goal is total dependence upon God. To get a new self; most human beings need to get rid of the old self.

Jean Pierre de Caussade (7 March 1675 – 8 December 1751), advice on people having great troubles, anxiety, depression:

“They have only to fulfill the simple duties of the Christian Faith and of their state of life, to accept with submission the crosses that go with those duties, and to submit with faith and love to the designs of Providence in everything that is constantly being presented to them to do and to endure, without searching for anything themselves.”

Morning Prayer for Saturday, November 10, 2018 — Selfishly seeking pleasure does not bring true happiness

November 10, 2018

The secret to true happiness…

I am less self-centered. The world used to revolve around me at the center. I cared more about my own needs, desires and my own pleasure, my own way,, myself than I did about the whole rest of the world. What happened to me was more important than anything else I could think of. I was selfishly trying to be happy and therefore I was unhappy most of the time. I have found that selfishly seeking pleasure does not bring true happiness. Thinking of myself all the time cut me off from the best in life. My spiritual journey has taught me to care less about myself and more about the other person. Am I less self-centered?

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Meditation for the Day

When something happens to upset you and you are discouraged, try to feel that life’s difficulties and troubles are not intended to arrest your progress in the spiritual life, but to test your strength and to increase your determination to keep going. Whatever it is that must be met, you are to either overcome it or use it. Nothing should daunt you for long, nor should any difficulty entirely overcome or conquer you. God’s strength will always be there, waiting for you to use it. Nothing can be too great to be overcome, or if not overcome, then used.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may know that there can be no failure with God. I pray that with His help I may live a more victorious life.

From Twenty Four Hours a Day

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I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. (John 10:10)

“The precious gift of abundant life. People often turn away from it, reject it, and will have none of it. Do not let this be true of you.” (Twenty Four Hours a Day, August 14)

See also:

Morning Prayer for Friday, November 9, 2018 — God Grant Me Cheerfulness

November 9, 2018

“Cheerfulness is a sign of a generous and mortified person who forgetting all things, even herself, tries to please her God in all she does for souls. Cheerfulness is often a cloak which hides a life of sacrifice and a continual union with God.”

— Mother Teresa (St Teresa of Calcutta)

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Is a negative person good for anybody? Is being moody and unhappy a sign of spiritual growth?

We all go though terrible turmoil in life. In many ways, life is a journey of ups and downs. The ups can give us ecstatic joy. Our downs can make us miserable, depressed and useless. For many these depressions turn into drug abuse, addiction, even murder and suicide.

We always have a choice. We we stop mourning our losses, we need to return to God and the world He has given us. We can stay on the side of the living and the side of God — or we can defect to the other side, the dark side.

Spiritual experts say God is talking to us. But we can only hear Him when we are still. Peaceful.

When we are angry, we hear nothing but ourselves, our inner demons and negative vibes.

For me it’s best for everyone when I stay on God’s side, meditate, listen for his direction, and maintain a cheerful demeanor. Service to others allows us to find a healthy and humble self respect while doing God’s work, God’s will.

Prayer:

God grant me cheerfulness. And keep me on the right path with gratitude, humility and service to others.

John Francis Carey
Peace and Freedom

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Molly Esterline is hugged by David Crawford on the scene of a shooting at a bar in Thousand Oaks, California, on Thursday, November 8.

Photo: Aftermath at Thousand Oaks

From Twenty Four Hours A Day for November 9:

I have learned to be less negative and more positive. I used to take a negative view of almost everything. Most people, in my estimation, were bluffing. There seemed to be very little good in the world, but lots of hypocrisy and sham. People could not be trusted. They would “take you” if they could. All churchgoers were partly hypocrites. It seemed I should take everything “with a grain of salt.” That was my general attitude toward life. Now I am more positive. I believe in people and in their capabilities. There is much love and truth and honesty in the world. I try not to run people down. Life now seems worthwhile and it is good to live. Am I less negative and more positive?

Meditation for the Day

Think of God as a Great Friend and try to realize the wonder of that friendship. When you give God; not only worship, obedience, and allegiance, but also close companionship, then He becomes your friend, even as you are His. You can feel that He and you are working together. He can do things for you and you can do things for Him. Your prayers become more real to you when you feel that God counts on your friendship and you count on His.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may think of God as my Friend. I pray that I may feel that I am working for Him and with Him.

Related:

Positive Psychology, Wellness, and You

https://caps.tcnj.edu/self-help-resources/positive-psychology-wellness-and-you/

and

For more than a decade of my life, I had struggled with debilitating anxiety, panic attacks and depression. Like millions of people around the world, I longed to discover a magic pill to cure my ills and promise me nirvana. But, despite taking many medications, ongoing psychotherapyelectroconvulsive therapy (ECTs), hospitalizations and failed suicide attempts, wellness had remained a distant dream. The anti-anxiety medications and antidepressants worsened my symptoms, and made me more agitated, depressed and suicidal. And I was utterly confused why the medications that were supposed to alleviate my symptoms exacerbated them instead.

Staring out of the fifth-floor hospital window one day after yet another failed suicide attempt, I promised to take charge of my life and create a life of wellness. I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. I just wanted to be well.

By Gayathri Ramprasad

The Eight Dimensions of Wellness

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/shadows-in-the-sun/201411/the-eight-dimensions-wellness

Morning Prayer for Thursday, November 8, 2018 —

November 8, 2018

No wreckage of the past and no wreckage of the future. Keep your mind on today. Stay in the present moment.

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“One thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things that are before, I press onward toward the goal.” We should forget those things, which are behind us and press onward toward something better. We can believe that God has forgiven us for all our past sins, provided we are honestly trying to live today the way we believe He wants us to live. We can wipe clean the slate of the past. We can start today with a clean slate and go forward with confidence toward the goal that has been set before us.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may drop off the load of the past. I pray that I may start today with a light heart and a new confidence.

From Twenty-Four Hours a Day
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Morning Prayer for Wednesday, November 7, 2018 — Resentments Destroy My Inner Peace

November 7, 2018

Resentments can ruin my life — and ruin me.  Getting even with people doesn’t do any good. When we try to get revenge, instead of making us feel better, it leaves us frustrated and cheated. Instead of punishing our enemies, we’ve only hurt our own peace of mind. It does not pay to nurse a grudge; it hurts us more than anyone else. Hate causes frustration, inner conflict, and neurosis. If we give out hate, we will become hateful. If we are resentful, we will be resented. If we do not like people, people will not like us. Revengefulness is a powerful poison in our systems. Have I lost my resentments?

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Meditation for the Day

It is not so much you, as the grace of God that is in you, that helps those around you. If you would help even those you dislike, you have to see that there is nothing in you to block the way, to keep God’s grace from using you. Your own pride and selfishness are the greatest blocks. Keep those out of the way and God’s grace will flow through you into the lives of others. Then all who come in contact with you can be helped in some way. Keep the channel open, free from those things that make your life futile and ineffective.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that all who come in contact with me will feel better for it. I pray that I may be careful not to harbor those things in my heart that put people off.

From the Book “Twenty Four Hours a Day”

Morning Prayer for Tuesday, November 6, 2018 — Calm Down and Do the Next Right Thing — The antidote to fear is faith

November 6, 2018

Fear and worry had me down. Drinking and using drugs increased them. I worried about what I had done. I was afraid of what the consequences might be. I was afraid to face people because of the fear of being found out. Fear kept me in hot water all the time. I was a nervous wreck from fear and worry. I was a tied-up bundle of nerves.

I had a fear of failure, of the future, of growing old, of sickness, of personal ruin, of suicide. I had a wrong set of ideas and attitudes.

We have to surrender these fears and worries to a Higher Power.  I now try to think faith instead of fear. Have I put faith in place of fear?

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Meditation for the Day

Spiritual power is God in action. God can only act through human beings. Whenever you, however weak you may be, allow God to act through you, then all you think and say and do is spiritually powerful. It is not you alone who produces a change in the lives of others! It is also the Divine Spirit in you and working through you. Power is God in action. God can use you as a tool to accomplish miracles in people’s lives.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may try to let God’s power act through me today. I pray that I may get rid of those blocks which keep His power from me.

From Twenty-Four Hours a Day (with some edits in para one)
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See also:
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Fear, Anger and Resentment

Source:https://addictioncounselor.wordpress.com/2010/06/01/f-a-r-fear-anger-and-resentment/

Morning Prayer for Monday, November 5, 2018 — Make me an instrument of your peace

November 5, 2018

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When fear is replaced by faith, the world gets better.

The world would sooner be brought close to God. His will would sooner be done on earth, if all who acknowledge Him gave themselves unreservedly to being used by Him. God can use every human being as a channel for divine love and power. What delays the bringing of the world closer to God is the backwardness of His followers. If each one lived each day for God and allowed God to work through him, then the world would soon be drawn much closer to God, its Founder and Preserver.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may be used as a channel to express the Divine Love. I pray that I may so live as to bring God’s spirit closer to the world.

From the Book “Twenty Four Hours A Day”

Related:

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Prayer of Saint Francis 

Lord make me an instrument of your peace
Where there is hatred let me sow love
Where there is injury, pardon
Where there is doubt, faith
Where there is despair, hope
Where there is darkness, light
And where there is sadness, joy
O divine master grant that I may
not so much seek to be consoled as to console
to be understood as to understand
To be loved as to love
For it is in giving that we receive
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned
And it’s in dying that we are born to eternal life
Amen
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 (We can’t hear God when we are angry and upset)
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“Be still and know that I am God.” The moments of deepest prayer are usually moments of quiet awe before the throne of God.
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God is a God of peace. He does not speak and does not operate except in Peace — Jacques Philippe, author of “Searching for and Maintaining Peace”
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For God is not a God of disorder but of peace–as in all the congregations of the Lord’s people. — 1  Corinthians 14:33
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The most often repeated instruction to man in the Holy Scripture is: “Do not be afraid.”

This little “anti-anxiety” prayer was a part of every Catholic Mass for centuries:
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Deliver us, Lord, from every evil,
and grant us peace in our day.
In your mercy keep us free from sin
and protect us from all anxiety
as we wait in joyful hope
for the coming of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
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Nada Te Turbe (Let nothing disturb you)
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Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things are passing away:
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things
Whoever has God lacks nothing;
God alone suffices.— St. Teresa of Avila
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