Spirit Lead Me: A Prayer

Jesus, purify me.

Deliver me. Cleanse me. Renew my very spirit and forgive me of all unrighteousness. Help my human soul to become heaven focused.

Thank you for your unfailing grace, mercy, and love. Thank you for redeeming me over and over again, even though I do not deserve it.

Your grace is unmeasurable and indescribable. You love us so much; You sacrificed everything.

Guide me, Jesus. Direct my path. Give me spiritual eyes to see what you desire me to see. Give me spiritual ears to hear your voice more clearly and louder than any other voice.

Allow your Holy Spirit to lead me, so that I may walk as You would walk, speak how You would speak, and act as You would act. Give me discernment and wisdom.

Help me to see the world through Your eyes and Your heart. Break my heart for what breaks Yours and help me to ignite change.

This world is so dark and full of hatred. Let Your light shine through me and allow kindness and love to flow out of me like a rushing waterfall.

Remind me to focus on You, and to remember that You are always with me, and always in control. You have a plan and a purpose, even when I don’t see it – even when I don’t understand.

Remind me of Your goodness every day- in the mundane of a busy work day and on my days of rest. Remind me of Your goodness in the beauty and intricacy of a freezing droplet of water and in the midst of your astounding creation. In a crowded room and when I’m all alone.

God, You are so good and all-powerful. Even the sun stands still when You tell it to (Joshua 10:13).

I thank You for Your promises. I thank You that You are my God, my Father, my Friend, my ever-present help, my Healer, my Savior, my Provider, my Protector, my everything. Thank You for all that You have done, all that You are doing, and all that You are going to do. I believe and trust in You with all of my heart. Spirit lead me.

In Jesus Name, Amen.

When God Answers Prayer

Prayer should not be merely an act, but an attitude of life.

Billy Graham

Billy Graham says it well when he goes on to say that “prayer is a two-way conversation between you and God” and “it is the Christian’s greatest weapon”. In Philippians 4:6-7 we are encouraged “[to not] worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”

God always answers prayer.

“This is the confidence we have before him: If we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears whatever we ask, we know that we have what we have asked of him.”
(1 John 5:14-15)

“Jesus answered them, ‘Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what was done to the fig tree, but even if you tell this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ it will be done.  And if you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.'”
(Matthew 21:21-22)

“Ask, and it will be given to you. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened to you.”
(Matthew 7:7)

“Whatever you ask in my name, I will do it so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.”
(John 14:13-14)

“Rejoice always, pray constantly, give thanks in everything; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
(1 Thess. 5:16-18)

In these verses above it clearly shows us that if we ask, He WILL listen and He WILL answer, if we simply trust. In your prayer time, declare these promises and know that He is always with you and is always listening. He wants to bless us, according to His divine purpose for us, so that we may go into the world and ultimately bless others. In the Bible God answered many of His servants’ prayers with a big YES! Here are some examples…

God said yes to Hezekiah when he prayed for healing.
(2 Kings 20:1-7)

God said yes to Hannah when she prayed to bare children.
(1 Samuel 1:1-20)

God said yes to Joshua in the heat of battle when he prayed that the sun and moon would stand still.
(Joshua 10:11-14)

God said yes to the Church when they earnestly prayed for Paul’s release from prison.
(Acts 12:1-17)

God is in control.

So what about when we feel as though our prayers are going unanswered or even unheard?

First, be sure you begin your prayer time by asking God for forgiveness and for Him to cleanse your soul of all impurity. God desires for you to come to His throne with clean hands and a pure heart (Psalm 24:3-4). Once you have done this, God casts away your sins as far as the east is from the west and remembers them no more. You can now rest in assurance that God is listening.

So what about when we’ve asked God for forgiveness, we know He is listening, we’ve prayed the same prayer over and over again, but it still seems as though there is no answer?

God answered you. Yep, you read that correctly. God always answers our prayers… He just may not answer in the way or timing that we anticipated. But I can assure you that His answer is the best answer, even if we don’t see it. He hears our cries and He knows our hearts and our deepest desires.

Let me remind you: God is God. He reigns supreme, He knows what is best, and He is in control. It is difficult to comprehend as human beings because we want control and it can be difficult to let go of that. Ultimately, God wants us to trust in Him. He wants us to let go of control and allow Him to take the steering wheel of our lives. We are not meant to understand His ways, instead we are simply meant to trust His ways.

God is still good, even when the answer is “no”.

I wrote this blog post to encourage and remind everyone that God ALWAYS answers prayer. Sometimes when God says “no” we believe the lie that our prayer went unanswered, but let me remind you that “no” is still an answer. Receiving a “no” can still come with new revelation, experiences, and excitement. When God says “no”, He may be closing one door to open up an even greater door. In the moment, the closed door may sting a little, our finger may get jammed, and our dreams may be crushed. Here is another sweet reminder: God has a plan and His plan is so much greater than any plan we could dream up for ourselves. His plan and purpose is perfect and full of goodness. In fact, Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you’—this is the Lord’s declaration—’plans for your well-being, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.

God said no to David’s request for his child’s life.
(2 Samuel 12:1-23)

God said no to Moses entering the promise land.
(Numbers 20:1-12)

God said no to Elijah because He had something better for him in the waiting.
(1 Kings 19:1-4)

God said no to James and John because of divine appointment.
(Mark 10:35-45)

God said no to Paul when he pleaded to have the “thorn in his flesh” departed from him.
(2 Corinthians 12:7-9)

God said no to Abraham and Sarah for a time, because God’s timing was perfect.
(Genesis 17)

God even said no to Jesus when he prayed for the cup to be taken away from Him right before He was to be arrested and crucified.
(Luke 22:41-47)

“Let’s remind our hearts of this truth [today]: Prayer does make a difference. We don’t need to know how. We don’t need to know when. We just need to kneel confidently and know even our most simple prayers extend far wide and far high and far deep. Keep praying, friend. God is listening.”

Lysa TerKeurst

God is listening, sweet friend. He hears you, He cares deeply, and He loves you with an everlasting and unconditional love. He only wants what is best for us and sometimes that may involve closing doors and unwanted answers. In the midst of it all you can remember that God always has a plan, through good and bad seasons. His will for us is perfect.

Dear Heavenly Father,
Please forgive me of my sin. Purify my soul and help me to live a life that is more pleasing to you, so that I may radiate your light through my words and actions. God, give me spiritual eyes to see your will for my life and to trust that it is good and perfect. Help me listen closely for when you answer. Even when it may not be the answer I hoped for, help me to have faith and to trust in You. In your Name I pray, Amen.

Kaitlyn is 23, a wife, a chinchilla mom, and she currently works full-time as a retail department manager. She dabbles a little in portrait and nature photography, as she enjoy capturing memories and natural beauty. Kaitlyn loves to write, spend time with her hubby, and explore God’s marvelous creation. She enjoys playing the piano, even though she’s still a beginner. Random fact: She would probably cry if she was ever given the honor of holding a sloth. Most importantly, Kaitlyn loves Jesus and is so grateful for His unconditional love and grace. She learns more about Him everyday, and desires to journey with other women, as we learn to walk in bravery, and shine His light through our lives.

I Choose You: A Battle Plan

The Christian walk is often compared to fighting a battle and running a race. Even if you’re not a Christian, I’m sure you can relate to life feeling like a battle. We battle everyday. We hustle and hustle, striving to get ahead and yet a trial or hardship always rears its’ head. Life is neither perfect nor easy. When facing adversity and hardship it is often accompanied by feelings of stress, fear, worry, doubt, and anxiety.

Fear. Anxiety. Worry. It’s something we ALL face at some point in varying degrees.

For some of us it’s constant, like our head is being pulled underwater. Drowning, unbearable. Others it comes in waves, crashing in when we least expect it. And for some it’s the occasional rain-shower that is sure to clear after a short while.

Anxiety: distress or uneasiness of mind caused by fear of danger or misfortune: a state of apprehension and psychic tension

The Bible repeatedly and consistently tells us to “fear not”. I haven’t counted this out myself, but people say there are 365 “fear nots” in the Bible, one for each day of the year. Do not fear when battles and trials come (a). Do not fear people or what they might do to you (b). Do not be anxious in any situation for any reason (c). In 1 Timothy it even states that God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, love, and of a sound mind. Great! Wonderful.  So because God’s Word says do not fear, do not be anxious about anything, you just need to stop being anxious, okay? 

Is it that easy? Can you just stop? Well… No, probably not.
Is just knowing that God doesn’t want us to fear enough to actually stop us from worrying and becoming anxious? Simply having the head knowledge isn’t enough either… But it’s a step.
Is it something we can choose to fight or must we let it consume us? 

I am convinced that we do not have to let anxiety consume us, that we can fight back. It takes action, it takes faith, it takes believing, it takes steadfastness, it takes not giving into your flesh. Honestly, it is nothing you or I can do in our own strength. When I try to fight anxiety in my own strength, it more often than not just leads to more anxiety. Now, I’m not saying that what I’m going to tell you is the cure for anxiety, because as long as we are living on this sin filled sphere, it’s going to be an issue. What I’m going to share with you is a strategy, a battle plan, to help you combat anxiety. There are two key truths I’m going to share with you that I have had to engrave upon my heart.
1. God is Sovereign.
2. My identity in Christ.

The Sovereignty of God

When you are fully believing in the Sovereignty of God there is no room for anxiety, worry, or fear.

God’s Sovereignty means that God is the supreme authority and ALL things are under His control. God is in control in every moment of every situation. Colossians 1:16-17 states that all things were created by God, for God, He is before all things, and it is because of Him that everything consists. God is in control.

Psalm 118:8 tells us “It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.” This includes all people, even yourself. God’s plans and His timing are always best. You have one piece to the puzzle, God sees the whole picture, and it’s beautiful. He had the puzzle put together before He even gave you that one piece. Sometimes it may seem like I can control a situation, but honestly I can control nothing.

Even through our sufferings God is sovereign, which can be hard to grasp. If God is good, and if God is in control, why does He allow me to suffer? Why does He allow tragedy to happen? Why, why, why? That is the question I have caught myself asking when my trust is in myself rather than in God.

You can find the story of Joseph in the book of Genesis and wowzers… did He endure a lot of straight up bad stuff. His brothers planned to murder him, leave him for dead in a pit. They changed their minds and sold him into slavery instead. He was wrongly accused of rape. He was forgotten about in jail. But God was with Joseph every step of the way. Through it all God had a plan, and it was beautiful.

Joseph eventually became governor of Egypt. When there was a famine in the land he was able to save his family. He told his brothers that what they had intended for evil, God had intended for good (d). God was Sovereign in Jospeh’s suffering and trials, and He is sovereign in the trials and sufferings we endure too.

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof.

Psalm 46:1-3

Luther Bridges — He Keeps Me Singing
There’s within my heart a melody
Jesus whispers sweet and low,
Fear not, I am with thee, peace, be still,
In all of life’s ebb and flow.

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus,
Sweetest Name I know,
Fills my every longing,
Keeps me singing as I go.
All my life was wrecked by sin and strife,
Discord filled my heart with pain,
Jesus swept across the broken strings,
Stirred the slumb’ring chords again.
Feasting on the riches of His grace,
Resting ’neath His shelt’ring wing,
Always looking on His smiling face,
That is why I shout and sing.
Though sometimes He leads through waters deep,
Trials fall across the way,
Though sometimes the path seems rough and steep,
See His footprints all the way.

It is said that Luther Bridges penned this hymn shortly after his wife and three children unexpectedly died. When we know God, He leads us, guides us and gives us strength and joy through trials, but we must trust Him and His Sovereignty. Knowing God is knowing that He is Sovereign. Luther had just suffered a great personal loss, but he knew God was in control and beside him through it all.

Anxiety, stress, worry… personally, it all boils down to being a control issue. When things are wildly out of my control I want to fix it. I’m a problem solver. But it is an immense weight off my shoulders and a wave of peace when I remind myself of a simple truth: God is in control, so I don’t need to be.

Your Identity in Christ

When you are fully believing who you are in Christ there is no room for anxiety, worry, or fear.

As a born again believer in Jesus Christ I am a new creation. He has made me new! Christ has a lot to say about who we are as believers and His children.

In this crazy world it is way too easy to let something or someone define you. Attempting to measure up to your own standards or someone else’s can be anxiety inducing. Hiding who you are, molding yourself to fit into the box can be anxiety inducing. Step out of the box of the world’s definition of you and step into Christ’s arms. Let Him define you.

I am a child of God (e).
I am loved by God (f).
I am valued (g).
I am chosen (h).
I have victory (i).
I have direct access to God (j).
I am capable (k).
I am born of God and Satan cannot touch me (l).
The blood of Jesus Christ has washed me clean. Guilt and shame free (m).

This list just barely brushes the surface of your identity in Christ. When I remind myself of who I am in Christ, it frees me. It brings me peace. It no longer matters what others think of me, because I know who I belong to and exactly what He says about me.

The Choice

I believe that we have choices in this world. When Satan fires the dart of anxiety and fear into our hearts we can choose to let it stay there, impaling us, hurting us, causing us to bleed and lose life. We can focus on the anxiety, we can focus on the problem, and all of the possible what ifs. Sometimes we can experience anxiety and don’t even know why we are feeling it. We can let it cripple us. We can let it pull our focus. We can give in to it. We can choose to let anxiety control us, stop us from living life to the absolute fullest. Anxiety can keep us from reaching our full potential. Anxiety can keep us from serving God.

Or we can stand. We can rip out the arrow of anxiety and choose to fight back. That is a painful sounding analogy, but choosing to fight back can be painful. Will we have a wound that takes time to heal? Yes. Will Satan continue to fire the dart of anxiety at you again and again? Yes. Especially if he knows that it is something you really struggle with, you can bet he is going to try to persistently use it. Choose to trust God. Choose to trust that He is control. Fight back in prayer. Is the fight easy? Nope. Claim the promises in God’s Word, who you are, who He created you to be. Know your Savior and His Sovereignty.

God wants us to give our cares, our worries, our fears, and anxieties to Him. He wants us to lay it all down at His feet and leave it there. Sometimes I have the habit of laying it down… and then picking it right back up. He wants us to rely on Him in our times of struggle and nothing else.

The Battle Plan

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Philippians 4:8

Instead of focusing on anxiety or the cause of our anxiety, focus on things that are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of a good report, virtuous, worthy of praise. God. Focus on God. Focus on His sovereignty. Focus on the identity He has given you.

Claim the scripture. Pray it over your life. If you know someone who is struggling, pray it over them. Prayer is power. It’s how we fight our battles. When we humble ourselves and lay it down at the feet of Jesus, He fights our battles for us. We cannot battle our fears, doubts, worries, anxieties, or anything at all in our own strength. It is in Christ where our strength resides.

Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:6-7

This prayer is my battle plan. When I pray it, it doesn’t always sound or look the same. This is a guide. When I pray this, or anything really, it is so important to pray it from the heart. Pray it like you mean it, don’t let it become a vain repitition in the hopes it’s the “cure.”

Dear God, 
You know my struggles, my anxieties, my fears, my doubts. Help me to claim the promises in your Word. Help me to fully believe in your Sovereignty and who I am in Christ. Lord, I’m choosing to fight my battles in prayer because I know that you are Sovereign and that you love me.

How precious also are your thoughts unto me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: (Psalm 139:17-18a)
God, I choose to trust you because you are sovereign. (Psalm 90:2, Hebrews 1:3, Psalm 97:9)
God, I choose to trust you because you are holy. (Revelation 4:8, Isaiah 6:3)
God, I choose to trust you because I am your child and you died for me. (John 3:16, 1:12)
God, I choose to trust you because you have overcome the death, Jesus conquered death and the grave.  (John 11:25, Romans 6:9)
God, I choose to trust you because through my faith in Christ I am MORE than a conqueror. (Romans 8:37)
God, I choose to trust you because your faithful love endures forever and nothing can separate me from your love. (Psalm 136, Romans 8:38-39)

God, I choose to trust you because you have said you will never leave me nor forsake me. (Hebrews 13:5, Deuteronomy 31: 6,8)
God, I choose to trust you because you say you will bear my burden, that I can cast ALL of my cares upon you. (Matthew 11:28-30, 1 Peter 5:7, Psalm 55:22)
God, I choose to trust you because you are gracious, forgiving, merciful, and just. (Joel 2:13, 1 John 1:9, Daniel 9:9, Acts 10:34)
God, I choose to trust you because you say that you have a plan for me and my life. (Jeremiah 29:11, Proverbs 3:5-6, Proverbs 16:9)
God, I choose to trust you because you know my every thought, you know my every move. (Psalm 139:1-4)
God, I choose to trust you because you are faithful despite my unfaithfulness, despite my worries and my doubts. (2 Timothy 2:13)
God, I choose you. I choose to believe that you are in control of all. I will not worry. You created all things and all things were created for you. (Colossians 1:16-17) You are sovereign over all. 
God, I am saying ‘yes’ to your promises. (2 Corinthians 1:20)
Lord, help my unbelief. Help me to trust you. Take away any doubt in the depths of my heart. (Mark 9:24)
In Jesus’ Name, (John 14:13-14)

Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.

Jeremiah 33:3

Scripture References:

a. Deuteronomy 20:3-4 And shall say unto them, Hear, O Israel, ye approach this day unto battle against your enemies: let not your hearts faint, fear not, and do not tremble, neither be ye terrified because of them; For the LORD your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.

b. Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.
Psalm 118:6 The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?

c. Philippians 1:6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Matthew 6:31-32 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? For after all these things do the Gentiles seek: for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

d. Genesis 5:20 But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.

e. John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:
1 John 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

f. 1 John 4:10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son [to be] the propitiation for our sins.

g. Matthew 10:31 Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.

h. 1 Peter 2:9-10 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.

i. 1 Corinthians 15:56-57 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

j. Ephesians 2:18 For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.

k. Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

l. 1 John 5:18 We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.

m. 1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
1 John 2:28 And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.

God is Sovereign:
Psalm 90:2 Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God.
Hebrews 1:3 Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;
Psalm 97:9 For thou, Lord, art high above all the earth: thou art exalted far above all gods.

God is Holy:
Revelation 4:8 And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.
Isaiah 6:3 And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.

I am a child of God and He died for me:
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

Jesus has conquered death and the grave: 
John 11:25 Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:
Romans 6:9 Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him.

Through my faith in Christ I am MORE than a conqueror:
Romans 8:37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.

God’s faithful love endures forever and nothing can separate me from it:
Psalm 136 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good. His faithful love endures forever. Give thanks to the God of gods. His faithful love endures forever. Give thanks to the Lord of lords. His faithful love endures forever. He alone does great wonders. His faithful love endures forever. He made the heavens skillfully. His faithful love endures forever. He spread the land on the waters. His faithful love endures forever. He made the great lights: His faithful love endures forever. the sun to rule by day, His faithful love endures forever. the moon and stars to rule by night. His faithful love endures forever. He struck the firstborn of the Egyptians His faithful love endures forever. and brought Israel out from among them His faithful love endures forever. with a strong hand and outstretched arm. His faithful love endures forever. He divided the Red Sea His faithful love endures forever. and led Israel through, His faithful love endures forever. but hurled Pharaoh and his army into the Red Sea. His faithful love endures forever. He led his people in the wilderness. His faithful love endures forever. He struck down great kings His faithful love endures forever. and slaughtered famous kings — His faithful love endures forever. Sihon king of the Amorites His faithful love endures forever. and Og king of Bashan — His faithful love endures forever. and gave their land as an inheritance, His faithful love endures forever. an inheritance to Israel his servant. His faithful love endures forever. He remembered us in our humiliation His faithful love endures forever. and rescued us from our foes. His faithful love endures forever. He gives food to every creature. His faithful love endures forever. Give thanks to the God of heaven! His faithful love endures forever.
Romans 8:38-39 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

God will never leave me nor forsake me:
Hebrews 13:5 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
Deuteronomy 31:6,8 Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. And the LORD, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.

God bears my burden and I can cast all of my cares upon Him:
Matthew 11:28-30 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
1 Peter 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
Psalm 55:22 Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.

God is gracious, forgiving, merciful, and just:
Joel 2:13 And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.
1 John 1:9 And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.
Daniel 9:9 And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.
Acts 10:34 Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:

God has a plan for me and my life:
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.
Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

God knows my every thought; my every move:
Psalm 139:1-4 O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me. Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off. Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether.

God is faithful despite my unfaithfulness, my worries and my doubts:
2 Timothy 2:13 If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.

God created all things, He is Sovereign over all:
Colossians 1:16-17 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.

Yes to the promises of God:
2 Corinthians 1:20 For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.

Take away doubt and unbelief:
Mark 9:24 And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.

In Jesus’ Name:
John 14:13-14 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.

Valerie loves going on adventures, spending time in nature, and getting lost in the wonders of God’s creation. She works in the 6th grade resource room at the local middle school, co-runs a faith-based youth mentoring program, and is actively involved in Bible camp ministry. Valerie loves mentoring other women, teens and children. She has an obsession with pens and stocking up on beautiful journals. Valerie’s greatest joy is sharing Jesus with others. Her greatest desire is to know Him more deeply and make Him known. You can find her on Instagram @valerieeejayyy

Hungering For Christ: A Prayer

Lord, hear my prayer.

I want to live a changed life.

I want my radical love for you to quite literally overtake everything.

I don’t want a boxed-in faith.

I don’t want a convenient, half-in, lukewarm, sort-of, haphazard, sometimes, kind-of, neat and tidy relationship with You.

Lord, let me not be like the pharisees, obsessed with head knowledge, or left with a bitter, unchanged heart. Lord, let me not use the term “christian”, referring only to just a “good”, “moral” way of living. Instead, let my bold faith change EVERYTHING.

Lord, I can buy all of the bumper stickers, post beautiful graphics of scripture, attend bible studies, read my verse-of-the-day, engage in “christian” political and social conversation, and yet still be so far from You.

Lord, you are not a box to check, a bullet on a to-do list, or a curated photo reel on social media.

Save me from this.

Save me from the idols of SELF and COMFORT. Save from my love of compromise.

I can listen to “christian” songs, order popular “christian” books, be surrounded by “christian” ideas and “christian” people and actually have no intimacy with You: Christ himself.

Lord, I am in a daily battle with a cute, ease-filled “christian” culture. It is a culture that tells me I don’t need to change, that doesn’t challenge me to love boundlessly, and seek You over everything else. It is a culture that condones my remaining comfortable, while building my own kingdom, and all the while neglecting the most prominent command I was given: to shine the gospel through all things that I do and share the truth of the gospel with all people.

Lord, the biggest threat to our christian faith is ourselves and our flesh. Forgive us, Lord, for we have welcome in a pseudo faith and a false, watered-down version of striving after You.

Lord, restore a fire of desire in my heart for You. Stir up a hunger and an unquenchable thirst for Your word and Your ways. If my relationship with You isn’t the lens through which I do and see everything else, Lord reveal to me what needs to be transformed in my heart.

I want to taste the change.

Lord, I give You permission to rise to the single most important aspect of my life. I invite You in to mold and shape my heart daily to be more like You and to love as You loved.

Lord, what a mind-blowing gift you have offered to have the opportunity of rich relationship with You, the Father, through your son Jesus Christ. I deserve death, but I have been given life over and over again. My sin does not rule over me anymore. I have been set free forevermore because of the blood of Jesus.

What a marvelous chance I have been given to live on this earth in this set-a-part time period and to spread Your truth like rapid wildfire. What a beautiful blessing I have to let You write my story as you guide my steps, my choices, and my relationships, and stir my heart affections for what truly matters.

Lord, allow Your compassion and love for others, and this world, to dwell in my heart for all to see.

I don’t deserve anything except for death, but through Your mercy alone I have abundant LIFE.

Lord, in desperation I seek You. I humbly ask for Your help to reject the authority of convenient, luke-warm christianity and instead sit under Your life-giving authority. Allow my heart not to be led astray by money, popularity, worldly riches, entertainment, comfort, or security.

I invite You to change everything.

Lord, when I fall back into vicious habits and run away from you, my shepherd, thank you for lovingly leading me back once more.

Thank you for starting each day anew and for placing my hope in eternity with You.

I praise You alone until the ends of the earth and the closing of time.


Wife to Simon and mama to Theodore Samuel. Hannah began her walk with Christ at age 17 and He is radically reshaping her world daily. She find so much joy in coffee cup conversations with other women at her home, serving alongside her husband at our church’s middle/high school youth group, exploring new cities, cozy days with a book, decorating/reorganizing, filling journals with brightly-colored pens, hand-writing notes on pretty stationary and time at the beach.