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Friday, April 29, 2011

Pray for Families (Mercy)

mer·cy noun \ˈmər-sē\

a blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassion; compassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender or to one subject to one's power. *

Dearest Prayer Angels,

With each step that I take toward the Lord, I seem to experience a newfound wisdom, one that fortunately or unfortunately, allows me to see my past with clarity. But I rejoice in the fact that we have an ever merciful Lord, who loves me in spite of who I was, who I am, and who I will be. All He asks is that I acknowledge my sins and ask for His mercy.

Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)

But to expect mercy, we must also be willing to give it. So in imitation of Christ, let’s not pick and chose who we will be merciful to, but start by extending our mercy to the person in our life who is most difficult to forgive. Then, extend this love and mercy on to your family members, and then on to others. Prepare yourself first with prayer. Pray for yourself and for those to which you will show your mercy.

But you, beloved, build yourselves up in your most holy faith; pray in the holy Spirit. Keep yourselves in the love of God and wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life. On those who waver, have mercy. Jude 1:20-22

May mercy, peace, and love be yours in abundance. Jude 1:2

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Be generous with your mercy. Share it. Pass this on.

* abbreviated from the Merriam-Webster Dictionary

Monday, April 25, 2011

Pray for Marriages (Participation with Grace)

Greetings Prayer Warriors!

Alleluia, Alleluia!

As Easter so beautifully shows us, Christ conquered sin and death so that one day we may rise with Him. Amazingly, this gentle warrior only had one weapon-LOVE.

No matter what your struggle, no matter what your path, open your heart to participate with the grace He pours upon you as a result of His extreme act of love. With this grace, let go of any remaining self-will, self–centeredness, selfish pride, and self-glorification. Then allow His love to fill all the empty spaces in your heart.

Indeed, the grace of our Lord has been abundant, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. 1 Timothy 1:14

Whether your struggle is in marriage or in another area of your life, accept the gift of His love, so that you will be able to share it freely with others. It is the only weapon you will need in your arsenal.

Let us pray for marriages, that all be given the fortitude to imitate Christ in His love. Then one day, may we will join Him in the full participation of His resurrection.

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Friday, April 22, 2011

Pray for Humanity

Dearest Prayer Warriors,

In a society that highly prizes independence, it is no wonder that we have such a hard time becoming dependent on the Lord. How difficult even the thought of total surrender is!

This morning, as I reflect on Christ’s perfect sacrifice, I am struck by His perfect gift of Infinite Love. His complete surrender to the will of the Father. His pure self-giving as the sacrificial lamb. He poured Himself out that we might be cleansed and brought back to life. What a Model for all of humanity! If we now would only open our hearts to the Spirit of Truth. With His arms outstretched, He is asking us to approach the God of Love and Unfathomable Mercy.

Yet it was our infirmities that he bore, our sufferings that he endured, While we thought of him as stricken, as one smitten by God and afflicted. But he was pierced for our offenses, crushed for our sins, Upon him was the chastisement that makes us whole, by his stripes we were healed. We had all gone astray like sheep, each following his own way; But the LORD laid upon him the guilt of us all. Though he was harshly treated, he submitted and opened not his mouth; Like a lamb led to the slaughter or a sheep before the shearers, he was silent and opened not his mouth. Isaiah 53:4-7

Today, please pray for the conversion of all of humanity. For all of our brothers and sisters in the Body of Christ, our universal family. Pray that no one, regardless of how great their sin, hesitates to ask for His mercy. For He already made the ultimate sacrifice so that we may have new life in Him. You are charged to live! Live in Him and for Him!

Peace, Joy, and Love,

His Love is meant to be shared.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Pray for Marriages (Reconciliation)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

As we begin Holy Week, my thoughts turn toward forgiveness. Have you ever been hurt by someone? I reflect back to a time many years ago, when I was deeply hurt by a friend. The anger that I felt was so intense that I was consumed by it. It would creep into almost every conversation that I had with others. Finally, after some time, I decided to let go of my anger and forgive her. What amazed me most was the realization that the anger I held on to so tightly had been poisoning me not her! My forgiveness began the healing in me. The peace I had been trying to recover had been obscured by my anger and my initial refusal to forgive.

I have not come to invite the self-righteous to a change of heart, but sinners. Luke 5:32

Forgiveness was a hallmark of Christ’s ministry. He understood that peace only reigns with love, and that without forgiveness, there is no love.

Therefore, if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ, God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. So we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We beseech you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. 2 Cor 5:17-20

Spend this week reconciling yourself to your spouse, your family, your friends, your coworkers, and/or your classmates. Create a new Garden of Peace in your heart. Like Christ, plant seeds of forgiveness so that love will eventually bloom and peace will reign. Then say an extra prayer for the reconciliation of marriages.

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Friday, April 15, 2011

Pray for Families (In His Sight)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

I just love the innocence and pure thinking of children. Who hasn't smiled when a young child covering his eyes thinks that because he can't see you, you can't see him! As older children and adults, we learn that only if you are hidden can you not be seen. However as Christians, we come to realize (and quickly forget) that no matter what we try to hide, ourselves, our actions, our words, or our thoughts, all is in full view of the Lord. How often in our daily lives do we actually stop to consider this? If we consciously keep this in our forethoughts, would our behavior change?

Therefore gird up your minds, be sober, set your hope fully upon the grace that is coming to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, be holy yourselves in all your conduct. 1 Peter 1:13-15

As we enter Holy Week, let’s glorify the Lord by keeping our bodies, actions, words, and thoughts holy and pure. Pray as a family that the Lord give you the grace to let go of negative behavior and embrace the positive behaviors that reflect the light and Christ.

Blessed by your week.

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Monday, April 11, 2011

Pray for Marriages (Community Support)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Anyone who is married knows that it takes a lot of commitment and work to create a wonderful marriage. But when the going gets tough, the desire to work at it can wane. This can create a feeling of isolation that often opens the door to sin. Unchecked, this can lead to lust, adultery, hardness of heart, selfishness, envy, and so on. There is a great need to have friends who understand the challenges of marriage and thus support each other in keeping their marriages strong. I am blessed to be in a faith community that has brought together couples to form “marriage circles”. These groups meet monthly for social time, education, and prayer, creating a silent accountability to each other.

For we now live, if you stand firm in the Lord. Night and day we pray beyond measure to see you in person and to remedy the deficiencies of your faith. Now may God himself, our Father, and our Lord Jesus direct our way to you, and may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, just as we have for you. 1 Thes 3:8,10-12

Invite another couple that cherishes the sanctity of marriage to be your faith partners. Gradually expand your circle, so that when your marriage or someone else’s experiences a bump in the road, you may provide or receive support.

Whether you are married, divorced, or single, please continue to pray for marriages. May you be richly blessed for your commitment to prayer.

Peace, Love, and Joy,

Friday, April 8, 2011

Pray for Families (Lost Sheep)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

I have just arrived to my daughter's college campus. Talk about a whole other world. These young adults live in a cocoon which they call reality. It is the ultimate breeding ground to lose your faith (if you had any to start), make your own rules, and have no one challenge your behavior because everyone does whatever they want. And the world awaits them! These are our future leaders and future parents. In truth, they are not that unlike previous generations. How long will they wander?

I am the Good Shepherd; I know my own and my own know me, as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. And I have other sheep, that are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will heed my voice. So there shall be one flock, one shepherd. John 10:14-16

Our young adults are in great need of prayer. Let's focus today's family prayer on young adults. Pray that they will hear the Good Shepherd's voice and come back into the fold or better yet, never leave it to begin with.

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Monday, April 4, 2011

Pray for Marriages (Past Hurts)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

The lamp of the body is the eye. If your eye is sound, your whole body will be filled with light. Matthew 6:22

Our vision is an amazing gift. We get to behold the beauty of the Lord’s creation every day! However our eyes can also lead to us to sin. My heart has a special empathy for those whose marriages have been destroyed by pornography, infidelity, and other such evils that filter in through our eyes.

There is a unique pain in not being able to help or change the behavior of another. It is difficult to watch self-indulgence and self-destruction and even more difficult to live with the emotional debris that is left in it’s wake. The only true weapon is prayer, and when that doesn’t result in the end we want, it can be extremely discouraging.

Lo, I am about to create new heavens and a new earth; The things of the past shall not be remembered or come to mind. Isaiah 65:17

This week as we continue our Lenten journey with Christ, the prayers I am requesting will be more challenging. They are prayers for those who have hurt us the most. As Christ calls us to love even our enemies, let us pray:

Lord, grant peace to those who have destroyed our peace.
Pour your love into the hearts of those who have refused us love;
Protect from emotional and physical injury those who have done us injury;
Give prosperity to those who have taken what was ours;
Shower abundant grace upon us Lord and make in us a new heart,
That we may learn to love others as you have loved us.
Help us to heal from past assaults to our heart, our mind, and our body,
as we seek to forgive all those who have hurt us.
May we turn to you in the sacraments to fortify and nourish us on our journey.
We ask this with humble hearts, in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Increase the army. Invite a warrior to prayer.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Pray for Families (Bearing Fruit)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

As we are almost mid-way through Lent, I hope your Lenten sacrifices are bearing fruit both within you and outside of you. I am always amazed at how much I struggle with little sacrifices. As I struggle, sometimes I offer up my sacrifice for a particular fruit, such as for the reparation of sins, that a hardened heart may soften, that someone may no longer hunger, etc. Perhaps I just do better when I have a short-term goal vs. the long-term goal of the heavenly banquet.

Having a family and/or being part of a family is such an opportunity for spiritual growth. Your focus is constantly pulled outside of yourself, where it should be. For Christ never dwelled on His own needs but those of others. His ministry had such a simple focus and message: Love a.k.a. Charity. Not love of self, but love of others. Loving others bears incredible fruit: Joy and Peace. Bringing peace into a family must start with love. Unconditional Love.

Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Phil 4:7

Love often requires incredible sacrifice. Imitate Christ. Practice unselfish love within your family and make it your prayer.

Peace, Joy, and Love,


Bring peace to others through love.