Dear Lord, it was a tough one today.
I am not complaining about big burdens or big problems. My family is relatively healthy. I have a loving family. I live in a caring community and have wonderful friends. But today, I lost my focus on the good. My eyes wandered onto what I did not have instead of what you have blessed me with. I wavered in my resolve to become more like You. I struggled. Big-time.
I woke up with positive plans. I read my Bible, spent some time with You in prayer, and attempted to put my day in perspective.
Then life happened.
An abrupt response, an irritable child, a broken-down appliance, no clean pair of socks, forgotten homework, a flat tire, and an unexpected bill.
I took the first couple of mishaps in stride. After that, I lost it. I was responsible for some non-Christlike reactions, some negative comments, and fixing my mind on some thoughts that were definitely not authored by You.
Lord, I could have done that whole “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you” thing and that “Be imitators of God…walking in love” thing if my day would have been smooth sailing. It is easy to serve You heartily, happily, and wholly when difficulties are not getting in line to attempt to defeat and disappoint me.
Lord, I wish there was a reset button. But there is not. So, please help me concentrate on what IS available to me: Your amazing mercy, Your second chances, Your unfailing love, and Your all-encompassing forgiveness. That is already quite a list, and there is even more.
You do not hold these gifts of grace in some secret place, waiting for us to go through a special ceremony to unlock them. Instead, You hold them out to us in Your arms that happen to already be outstretched in order to hold us and tell us You are here to comfort us.
Lord, please refill me with Your Holy Spirit, refresh me with Your peace, and renew me with Your power.
Lord, You love me. You love me when I ask for forgiveness, and when I repent of my wrongdoing. You love me when I seek You and when I call on Your name. You love me when…I could go on forever.
I am the recipient of unfailing love that I do not feel worthy of, that You declared on a cross, that You are willing to overwhelm me with. You continue to cover me with that love on bad days, good days and all days in between.
May I never use Your promised love as an excuse not to strive to be more and more like You every day. The “You love me no matter what,” fact should be incentive to become more and more like You, not an excuse to ‘get away with’ actions that do not reflect Who You are.
Lord, maybe people did not see You in my actions today. Lord, I ask You that they will see a glimpse of You in my renewed determination to display Your character tomorrow.
Only You can shine through a broken vessel like me. Thank You for wanting to show Your glory through my weaknesses and imperfections. Thank You for assuring me that while sin separates us, my repentance and Your forgiveness bring us back together again.
Thank You for second, third, and countless chances. Thank You for being Who You are. In Your Holy Name I pray. Amen.