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Monday, June 30, 2014

Pray for Marriages (Poured out like a libation)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

As you hold on to the word of life, so that my boast for the day of Christ may be that I did not run in vain or labor in vain. But, even if I am poured out as a libation upon the sacrificial service of your faith, I rejoice and share my joy with all of you.  Philippians 2: 16-17

I am struck by Paul’s words, “poured out like a libation”. I immediately visualize Jesus on the cross, with blood and water pouring forth from his side as a fount of mercy for us; Pure sacrificial love. In imitation of Christ, Paul also gave of himself for the advancement of the Kingdom of God. He no longer had regard for self, but for the salvation of others.

Yet I live, no longer I, but Christ lives in me. Galatians 2:20

We have much to learn from St. Paul. Anchored in Christ, his heart enkindled by the fire of Christ’s love, he became fearless.

I have the strength for everything through him who empowers me. Philippians 4:13

Inspired by Paul’s example, let us pray for that we too may imitate the love of Christ, starting within our marriages.

Lord, we ask that all married couples be given the grace to pour themselves out for the benefit of the other.  May they find ongoing strength and fortitude by allowing Christ to work through them. May all their giving be out of pure love, finding joy in each sacrifice. Lord, continue to send us examples of holiness, beacons of light and hope for us in this world.  Amen.

Do everything without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine like lights in the world. Philippians 2:14-15

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet
  
Everyone needs prayer.  Everyone needs to pray. Pass it on!   


Friday, June 27, 2014

Pray for Families (P.E.A.C.E.)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

þ Attend graduations and subsequent parties, send cards/gifts
þ Mail Mother’s and Father’s Day cards; plan celebration
þ Help kids prep for final exams
     Pray
þ Fill propane tank
þ Plan and book vacation
þ Arrange mail and newspaper delivery hold while gone
Find neighbor to water the yard and feed pet while gone
    Beg early morning ride to the airport

Have you ever noticed that life can feel like one never-ending checklist to check-off, leaving you in a state of constant unrest?  Do you find that speed up during the summer months rather than slow down?  Is your life just one speed….overdrive? 

Peace can be yours, but you need to allow it into your routine.

P ause
E very day to
A ccept
C hrist’s
E mbrace

We have a loving God that walks with us always and longs to infuse us with His Peace.  Pause long enough in your day to acknowledge Him, share your burdens with Him, and listen to Him, and He will leave you with His Peace----even amidst the chaos of life.

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. John 14:27

Ask the Lord for the grace to spend time with Him daily. Pray for your family as well, that they too may pause every day to accept Christ’s embrace.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

þ Pass on some Peace!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Pray for Marriages (Sacrificial Love)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

As I return from Assisi, I am moved by the story of St. Frances.  Denying all of his inheritance and status, he chose to live a life of poverty and service out of love for Christ.  He became the hands and feet of Christ and ultimately transformed not just a region, but his Christian way of life lives on through the Franciscan Order.

Simple acts of love and kindness received can have transformative power in our lives.   In experiencing these acts, our soul senses the love of Christ radiating through others and we are somehow changed. 

Upon my return from Italy, my husband skipped the curbside pick-up, parked the car, and came into the terminal to greet me and carry all my bags.  Sigh :)  (This is a huge treat for a frequent flier.)  Although it wouldn’t have been his choice, he acquiesced to my desire to attend Mass before heading home.  This is sacrificial love at its finest.  Christ’s love beaming through, when one chooses self-denial.  This laser of love overwhelms me and touches my heart.

Perhaps for marriages to flourish, one need not be paralyzed by the thought of huge self-sacrifice, but instead mobilize oneself with the offering of small sacrifices for the benefit of their spouse.  Indeed, hearts will be changed including your own.

So be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us and handed himself over for us as a sacrificial offering to God for a fragrant aroma. Ephesians 5:1-2

Lord, infuse us with your divine grace, so that like you, we may find joy in sacrificing ourselves out of love for another. Bless each marriage, giving each spouse a greater capacity to love.  Heal our wounds, break down our walls, and teach us to forgive once and for all.  Illuminate our hearts and minds, so that we may radiate your love in all that we do.  We ask this with most humble hearts.  Amen.

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Show some love and pass it on!  

Friday, June 20, 2014

Pray for Families (Growing in Virtue)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

As I've been away on pilgrimage, I was blessed to experience a new kind of family, one where everyone is seeking a closer walk with God. The experience was illuminated by the angelic voice of our tour lead, Alejandro, who with his Italian accent would either whisper (when the majority were snoozing on the tour bus) or shout (when we were in large tour queues, " family...Family!"  Being greeted and welcomed as "family" made us feel like we were being wrapped in a nice warm blanket. Witnessing the patience he had with even the slowest pilgrim was inspirational. 

It makes you wonder, if and when we recognize our own family as "ours" and treat them with loving kindness and patience, what positive change might occur?

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Galations 5:22-23

Let's pray for some heavenly fruit!  

Come quickly to help me, LORD! Psalm 40:14

Pray that all members of your family grow in the virtues that they most need for the uplifting of others. Don't forget to include yourself in this prayer!

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Become a prayer warrior, the best kind of family. Pass it on!

Monday, June 16, 2014

Pray for Marriages (Heavenly Fitness)

Greetings from Italy  Prayer Angels!

pil·grim·age: a journey to a holy place.

As I journey to the holy places throughout Italy, I begin to ponder aren't we all pilgrims, with eyes looking to the heavens, wondering how we will ever make it to our final destination?

In marriage we are blessed with a partner for this journey and we are expected to help each other become holy.  It's like having an exercise partner, however the exercises are spiritual!  Please pray that The Lord gives each married couple the right amount of equipment (grace) to achieve the ultimate fitness goal (sanctification).

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bearing with one another and forgiving one another Colossians 3:12-13

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

There's a new fitness craze. Pass it on!

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Pray for Families (Pray like a Saint)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,
I am away on a pilgrimage but couldn't resist sending you your weekly reminder to pray for families.  Since I am in Assisi, Italy, it seemed only fitting that I share the prayer of St Francis for you to meditate on.
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; 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; it is in dying that we are born again to eternal life.
" With people this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible. Matthew 19:26
Peace, Joy, and Love, 
Janet

Pass it on!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Pray for Marriages (100% all in!)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

We have this notion in life that all relationships should be 50-50, meaning everyone contributes their share.  Thus, we enter into marriage thinking this is the best plan.  I’ll do my part and you do yours.  We always seek a perfect balance.

If scripture shows us the way, let’s test whether or not this is a valid hypothesis. There are many passages with Jesus as the Bridegroom.  Not once does he command, “meet me halfway” but rather we see that He offers himself as gift.  100% committed.  Just look at the crucifix.  He held nothing back as Bridegroom.  He gave His entire life for us, the beloved.

For as a young man marries a virgin, your Builder shall marry you; And as a bridegroom rejoices in his bride so shall your God rejoice in you.  
Isaiah 62:5

Let us pray that the love of the Holy Spirit pours out upon all married couples giving them the courage needed to give all and expect nothing in return.  Lord, be generous!  Create unity where there is none and make them one, so that the giving is easy!

Do nothing out of selfishness or out of vainglory; rather, humbly regard others as more important than yourselves, each looking out not for his own interests, but [also] everyone for those of others. Philippians 2:3-4

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

He loves you, the beloved.  Pass it on!  

Friday, June 6, 2014

Pray for Families (A Charitable Heart)

Greeting Prayer Warriors,

Amidst the onslaught of horrific news via different media outlets, I hold on to the fact that most people are inherently good.  Whether I experience it when I travel, wait in line, or shop, the strangers I meet are predominantly kind.   Most of us can think of a time when a stranger offered a helping hand, support, referrals, money, a kind word, a prayer, a jump-start, or a connection.   Why would one reach out to a stranger?  Because God wired us for goodness!

“I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them upon their minds.” Hebrews 10:16   Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God; everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God. 1 John 4:7

Our spirit knows that we are one big family, much beloved children of God, and thus when we let our hearts act rather than our often narcissistic minds, we touch others in ways often unseen.   All we need to do is allow the Lord to work in our lives, unimpeded!

Let us pray for an outpouring of the gift of charity (love) on all of God’s children.  Let us not neglect to include those who do evil, as they need our prayers too.  Often, evil acts stem from a heart damaged by rejection and hurt.

A glad heart lights up the face, but an anguished heart breaks the spirit. Proverbs 15:13 Insult has broken my heart, and I despair; I looked for compassion, but there was none, for comforters, but found none.  
Psalm 69:21

Prayer is a gateway to loving more.  Keep praying!

Peace, Joy, and Love,
Janet

Prayer begets love; love begets prayer.  Don’t break the cycle!  Pass it on!  

Monday, June 2, 2014

Pray for Marriages (Holy Speed Bumps)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Some marriages slowly fizzle, while others speed out of control.  That’s why the Lord created Holy Speed Bumps; to either awake you from your apathy or slow you down enough to see that you are heading in the wrong direction!  What is a Holy Speed Bump, you ask?  Why it’s an event or person that makes you stop, reassess, and seek to learn the Lord’s long-term plan for your marriage.  Speed bumps can be annoying, uncomfortable, and something you want to avoid, but in prayer you will see that they are a total gift of love from the Beloved, given with your eternal wellbeing in mind. Delight in your speed bumps! 

But the world will tell you otherwise, with assorted messages assaulting your brain:  “Avoid conflict.” “Battle it out!” “Seek your own gratification.”  “You deserve to be happy, don’t you?”  “You can do better.” 

Look not to what is seen but to what is unseen; for what is seen is transitory, but what is unseen is eternal.  2 Corinthians 5:18

I have told you this so that you might have peace in me. In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the world. John 16:33

Please pray for those marriages most in need, that when jolted by the Holy Speed Bump, they pause, reflect, and experience the love and mercy being offered.   May they turn towards our loving God in humble prayer, trusting in Him to guide, heal, comfort, and restore, something that was once broken.

“Behold, I make all things new.”  Revelation 21:5

Peace, Joy, and Love, 
Janet

Warning:  Holy Speed Bump ahead.  Pass it on!