Lord, to you this morning, I lift of my soul. O my God, I trust in you. Forgive me, my God. I know that lately I have not been putting my trust in you. I have been working and operating in my own power. I have been striving rather than relying. I want to rely fully on you. I know that if I wait on you, I will not be ashamed. Lord, make me know your ways, and lead me into your truth, for you are the God of my salvation. I praise you for your salvation. I cannot thank you enough. You remember me according to your compassion and lovingkindness and not according to my sins! Thank you Jesus! Thank you for your sacrifice. For your goodness' sake, O God, you always view me through the blood of your Son and not as I stand on my own. Lord, you are good and upright. Therefore, you have instructed me, a sinner, in your way. I know that it is not for my sake alone, but for your name's sake that you have pardoned my sin. My sin is great before you, and it is no small thing that you would dismiss all charges against me. You have plucked my soul from hell and have placed it in eternal prosperity. You have brought me into your covenant, so that I know I can completely rely on you. So my eyes will continually and always be toward you, for it is only you who can pluck my feet out of the net. Father, thank you for always being so gracious with me. I love the way you deal with me. Thank you for your rescue! I take refuge in you. Let integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I will wait for you.
Not only am I studying through and praying through the Psalms, I am also teaching through them in our small group. Last night, we studied Psalm 18. So this morning, I thought it would be appropriate to post a "Praying Through the Psalms" on Psalm 18.
I love you, O lord my strength. You are my rock. When nothing else is sure in my life, I know I can count on you. You are my foundation for living. You are my fortress. When the stress of this world and the attacks of the enemy become too much to bear, I flee to you, to hide in your shelter. I take refuge in you. In you I find rest and peace. I am able to relax, take a deep breath, and soak in your presence. You even deliver me from my enemy and the circumstances of living in a fallen world. I call upon you, and you deliver me. You, my God, are worthy to be praised. It blows my mind that I am able to simply call out to you, and you hear my cry. Because of your love for me, you are moved to anger when I am being attacked by the evil one. Who am I that you would care so much about me? I honestly don't understand why you would even give me the time of day. But you have rescued me from my sin because you delight in me! Who am I that you should care for me at all? And yet, you not only care but delight in me. So to whom else would I run, when you have been so good to me? You are blameless and true, and I place all of my faith and hope in you. You are my shield and my refuge. You have saved me and continue to uphold me. You are the only living God. May you be blessed and exalted forever. You are the Great Deliverer. Therefore, I will thanks to you publicly so that many others will come to know you as I know you.
It's interesting that most of the personal comments I receive regarding my blog are about the prayers that I post. And as I've tracked the traffic to my site, I've noticed that most of the people that have visited from a search engine were searching for prayers.
Lately, I've been praying through the Psalms. I've done it before, and it's always beneficial to my walk with God. I've mentioned that to a couple of people, and they don't quite get what that means. I've tried to explain it like this: I read the Psalm for the day and use the the words and theme of the Psalm to direct me as I pray. I usually write it out in a prayer journal as I go.
Anyway, because of these recent observations, I've decided to add a new element to my blog: Praying Through the Psalms. For this element, I will post a prayer that I recorded in my prayer journal. I won't post them everyday, but I will post them periodically as I feel so inclined. The Psalm which directed the prayer will be in the title. For this to be fully benefical, you should first read the Psalm, and then read the post. This is not because I feel like my prayers are so special. Actually, what I hope happens is that people will read them and realize how simple and un-special they are, and realize that anyone can do it. If you practice this, you will be blessed by it. I promise.
O Lord, you are my Lord. There is no good in my life except you and those things you have given me. Lord, I praise you this morning because you are my inheritance. You are my everything. You are my life. You have directed every aspect of my life, and things have gone well for me. Life is not always perfect. Sometimes it even sucks. But because you are in control of my fate, my heritage is beautiful to me. I will bless you, O Lord, for you have counseled me and instructed me and you have given me the grace to follow it. Lord, I have set you continually before me. You are always on my mind. I know that it is you who is guiding and directing me and enabling me through your power. Because of your power in my life, I will not be shaken. Even in difficult times, my heart is glad, and I rejoice in you because I know that you are in control and will not abandon me. My path is certain and my destination is secured. When I don't know what to do, you will make known to me the right path. I will follow you anywhere, even into the deepest darkest abyss, because I want to go wherever I can experience your presence and your power. In your presence there is fullness of joy. And even if I should die, I will go to be with you where there are pleasures forever. When I am on your team, everything is a win-win. To live is Christ. To die is gain.