Cheri's Blog

Prayer for a Path Forward

path forward

Prayer for a Path Forward

Are you a morning person?

Honestly, mornings have never been my jam. I would rather stay up until 2:00 AM than get up before seven. Although marrying a morning person did improve my bearish behavior, it wasn’t until I picked up a pattern in Scripture that I left my deviant ways behind.

Somewhere around two kids and a dog, I found myself spent. As a young mom trying to finish school while working part-time, I was exhausted. Long days followed late nights. That’s when I realized something was missing. It dawned on me the Bible never records Jesus staying up late working on a project, like me, too bleary-eyed to pray in the morning. I supposed Jesus was a morning person. Still, the blaring absence communicated there might be something to starting the day in prayer instead of downcast despondence. So, I set about mending my night-owlish ways to do just that.

Lessons Learned on the Path Forward

Spending focused time in prayer is where you and I grow by God’s grace. Those moments are more than giving voice to what concerns us. They are the building blocks of relationships. When Jesus relates his analogy of the vine to the branches, he makes clear there is no fruit found on branches that don’t stay connected to the vine. The point is to live in the vine. It is a picture of a close relationship between God, the vinedresser, and the followers of Christ developed by spending time together.

Chances are, the hours in your days and nights are consumed. There is nothing left by the time your head hits the pillow. I get it. I too have tried to squeeze twenty-seven hours into my allotted twenty-four. And it’s not making me more like Jesus. I need a better path forward. Likely, you do, too.

Let me experience your faithful love in the morning, for I trust in you. Reveal to me the way I should go because I appeal to you. Psalm 143:8

The Psalmist reminds us that when we begin praying in the morning to grow in relationship with God, we can know his faithful love by experience.

When you and I make meeting with God a top priority, before we are spent and exhausted, we reap benefits. Those first moments of the day allow us to pour out our hearts, leave our concerns, and request guidance in knowing which way to go. As we listen, we begin to experience more of God. I don’t understand how it works, but this approach is the one the Psalmist took, Jesus lived, and the way he paved four to live a fruitful life.

The Psalmist is like us in that he wants this reality in his own life – to experience more of God and for direction, so he asks for it.

Prayer for a Path Forward

path forward

Dear Lord,

Today I pray for my fellow night-owl. I pray for the one burning her candle down to the nub, still breathless, never finding time to be alone with You. Or if she does, it’s at random times when she thinks of it. Show her a path forward. Give her a solution for making meeting with you her priority. Draw near so that she will know by experience just how faithful is your love for her. Lead her and direct her ways. Reveal yourself to her in a way she can recognize and understand it comes from a God who is crazy about her.

For all of this I ask in the Name of Jesus, Amen.

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Times of testing

 

Praying for Work

Praying for Work Banner

Praying for Work

In case you are just finding us here, my name is Cheri Strange. Stick around and check out the rest of the site (Be sure to grab hold of the FREE Book Bundle before you leave). I’m so glad you are with me today. The purpose of the blog on Fridays is to take Scripture and pray it over you. Each week I select a short passage or verse from the Bible that is naturally as written, or that can be turned into a prayer. After a short discourse on the page of how the particular passage might relate to you and me today, I offer a prayer over whoever is reading. Today we are praying for work.

The reality is that you may not have people in your life praying for you. As a believer in Christ, I want you to experience the power of God’s Word spoken over your life at least one time per week. I am praying this is five minutes of encouragement just for you.

She Prays

That’s all there is to it. Every Friday you will now find us right here.

Today, I want to look at two verses I have been praying in my own devotional time for a long time.

Scripture for Praying for Work

Let your work be shown to your servants,
and your glorious power to their children.
Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us,
and establish the work of our hands upon us;
yes, establish the work of our hands! Psalm 90:16-17

Moses is the author of these words, and he is praying over the people. The first thing we can take from his prayer is that it is well and good to ask God to show us what work He wants us to be about. I’m not talking about employment with pay, but rather any work, vocational or otherwise.

I recognize my own deficiency in this area. Frankly, I’m not smart enough to know what work is the most beneficial for the limited days He has granted me on this planet. I am not serious-minded enough to select the eternal over the superficial ON MY OWN. This prayer beckons me to bring my blank agenda before Him as I am praying for the day, and beyond, allowing Him to make my plan. Right here the Bible offers a precedent to ask, letting His work be shown to us, His people. But this unveiling is not simply for you and me. It’s also for our children.

When God does something incredible in my life, the event doesn’t happen in a vacuum. For sure, it can be a private matter. But I can ask that God be demonstrative with it, like Moses. I can ask that it be so flamboyant, in your face, apparent that God is working through me and my surroundings that my children can’t help but see His glorious power through it all.

When God moves in your life and those in the next generation witness the change, the experience builds their belief and trust in a God who is worthy of it. And if these two elements were not enough, Moses offers more we can utilize in our own lives.

Oh, Yes! There’s More

We can ask that He show us favor in these endeavors and that we not fail. Moses calls on God to establish the work of our hands upon us; yes, establish the work of our hands! In other words, grow it down deep. Keep us from giving up. Give us what we need to do what He calls us to do.

Who doesn’t need a powerful and effective prayer that asks for God to establish your work, to make His power and presence in it to be recognizable, to grant favor in the working, and the strength to keep going until it is finished? What a gift we have in this Psalm.

Write these verses down. Get them into a place you can use them in your prayer time regularly. See what God will do when you begin to pray His Word back to Him. And do let us hear about it!

Praying for Work

Praying for WorkLord,

Today we bring to you our efforts, our agenda, and our life endeavors. I specifically life up my friend reading. Illuminate the work you have specifically hewed out for her using her skill set, background, deficiencies, along with her faith to rely on you for what she cannot do. Let it be known to her. Make your presence be so apparent that her spiritual and physical children cannot miss or deny your power through it all.

I ask for favor on behalf of this one. Whatever is standing in the way, clear it. If there are problems work them out. If she has fears, calm them. Doubts, reassure her. Give her the favor of the Lord our God and establish this work you are entrusting her to do. Establish it long and deep. Help her know it is from You, bringing with it a confident hope and a longing for Your eternal purposes for her life.

In the glorious and powerfully able Name of Jesus,

Amen

Have you received my FREE gift to you? Get 3 resources to help you experience more of God in your everyday life. It’s filled with practical helps for living out what really matters.

FREE STIRRING FAITH BUNDLE

Get my FREE gift to you to help you experience more of God in your everyday life. You will receive two beautiful e-books (Awakening Hope, a 21-Day devotional, 7 Fundamentals for Navigating Relationships, and my Bible Reading Plan for a working strategy for reading the Bible month by month, day by day. You will also begin receiving more resources, news, and encouragement from me while gaining access to the Strange Library -- all of the resources I offer to members of the She Yearns Community without cost. Get your FREE gift today!

We respect your privacy.

If you would like to become a part of the private FB group, She Prays, we would love to have you. Click the image to join.

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hey there girlfriend

Did you know Cheri has over TWENTY different reading plans for you to choose from? Just click on the images below to check them out:

The Journey Toward Waiting WellConquering Chaos

If you like She Prays for battling fear you will like finding light

You can meet Cheri on the She Yearns blog for more truth-saturated, Gospel-centered encouragement like this:

Times of testing

A Prayer for the Discouraged

prayer for the discouraged

A Prayer for the Discouraged

Are you a “glass is half-empty” or a “glass is half-full” kind of person? I often tease that my glass hardly ever has ANYTHING in it. Truly I am melancholy to the core. My serious nature is so acute that recently a stranger walked over to me, thinking I was discouraged, laid hands on me, and prayed against my demeanor in a heavenly language I did not understand. I welcomed the gesture because, with my pensive disposition, downheartedness shows up regularly.

Before my feet hit the ground in the morning, my thoughts bring me all sorts of negativity. Often, my mind swings open the door and rolls out the red carpet, welcoming all my past failings, current inabilities, and possibilities that will surely never materialize so that my glass of hope is turned upside down without hardly a drop remaining.

Other times, my discouragement springs from realities, just like yours. You and I can be bombarded with problems we can’t solve and relationships that will not heal. Some disappointments throw us back sixteen steps after we have only taken two forward.

Recently we visited with a pastor and his wife who are planting a new church in an unchurched area. Starting from nothing is challenging by itself, but all progress in the last couple of years has been lost due to a host of issues they cannot control. It feels like, in many ways, they are starting over. Again.

So often, discouragement can reign in our lives. But what I have learned (and continue to experience) is how very faithful God is to bring me out of those times, teaching me what to do when discouragement seeks to prevail.

Insights from a Discouraged Follower

The Psalms are replete with help for almost every human situation or emotion. When it comes to what ails my heart and mind, Psalm 42 meets me in my need.

My soul is cast down within me;
therefore I remember you
from the land of Jordan and of Hermon,
from Mount Mizar.
7Deep calls to deep
at the roar of your waterfalls;
all your breakers and your waves
have gone over me.
8By day the LORD commands his steadfast love,
and at night his song is with me,
a prayer to the God of my life.
9I say to God, my rock:
“Why have you forgotten me?
Why do I go mourning
because of the oppression of the enemy?”
10As with a deadly wound in my bones,
my adversaries taunt me,
while they say to me all the day long,
“Where is your God?”

11Why are you cast down, O my soul,
and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
my salvation and my God. Psalm 42:6-11

The Battle Against Discouragement

The author is distressed. He may be melancholy in personality, but he offers strong reasons he is in the dumps. Something bad has happened. Maybe a series of badness has found its way into his present. He feels as if God has gone silent and nearly vanished, and people are chiding him for it.

This writer does something in his torment you and I should do. He stops listening to himself and begins talking to himself.

Things are bad. He, too, has almost lost every drop of hope he possesses. But instead of listening to his own destructive thoughts, replaying memories of failures, unsuccessful attempts, previous defeats, and a host of inabilities, he stops the noise by talking to himself in truth.

Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God. Psalm 42:6-11

Winning the Battle Against Discouragement

When it comes to winning the battle against discouragement, preaching Truth to ourselves is our best offensive weapon. This is exactly what we observe from the Psalmist.

Why are you in the dumps? Don’t do that. It’s not going to help. HOPE IN GOD. I know you don’t feel like praising God — but you will. God will deliver you and give you the hope you need to rejoice, again.

Martin Lloyd-Jones, a renowned preacher of the 20th century wrote an entire book on this one Psalm called Spiritual Depression: It’s Causes and Cures, (Find it through the link provided. I highly recommend it.) He writes:

You must turn on yourself, upbraid yourself, condemn yourself, exhort yourself, and say to yourself: ‘Hope in God,’–instead of muttering in this depressed, unhappy way. And then you must go on to remind yourself of God, Who God is, and what God is and what God has done, and what God has pledged Himself to do. Having done that, end on this great note: defy yourself, and defy other people, and defy the devil and the whole world, and say with this man, ‘I shall yet praise Him for the help of His countenance, who is also the health of my countenance and my God.

This soul is not out of the woods, yet. But he is making a way–believing God by preaching to himself what he is not currently experiencing and is struggling to believe is true. That, my friend, is the glorious help found in the trenches of Psalm 42.

To give you support in your battle against discouragement, allow me to pray this prayer over you.

A Prayer When You are Discouraged

prayer for the discouragedLord,

Time after time, You have shown yourself faithful. You are gracious in giving your Word through the Bible and through other godly people who rely on the Bible to guide us to wholeness. I am asking that you be true to Your character, doing this great work in the life of my friend, today.

I do not know what burdens she bears, but I ask that you help her become aware of her own tendencies. Help her to stop listening to the negativity, the bad news, and the destructive thoughts that ruminate through her mind. Equip her with truth so that she can defy herself, her environment, and the devil, himself, preaching the glorious realities of Who you are to her inner being until she can yet praise You, again.

In the glorious and unmatched name of Jesus.

Amen

Have you received my FREE gift to you? Get 3 resources to help you experience more of God in your everyday life. It’s filled with practical helps for living out what really matters.

FREE STIRRING FAITH BUNDLE

Get my FREE gift to you to help you experience more of God in your everyday life. You will receive two beautiful e-books (Awakening Hope, a 21-Day devotional, 7 Fundamentals for Navigating Relationships, and my Bible Reading Plan for a working strategy for reading the Bible month by month, day by day. You will also begin receiving more resources, news, and encouragement from me while gaining access to the Strange Library -- all of the resources I offer to members of the She Yearns Community without cost. Get your FREE gift today!

We respect your privacy.

If you would like to become a part of the private FB group, She Prays, we would love to have you. Click the image to join.

glimpses of she prays

Don’t forget to check out the latest FREE reading plan available from YouVersion?

She has over TWENTY different reading plans for you to choose from. Just click on the images below to check it out:

The Journey Toward Waiting WellConquering Chaos

If you like She Prays for battling fear you will like finding light

You can meet Cheri on the She Yearns blog for more truth-saturated, Gospel-centered encouragement like this:

Times of testing

 

God is For You

Cover God is for you

God is For You

She Prays on Friday

She Prays exists for two main reasons. One reason results from the rich depository of resources I have discovered for my own prayers in Scriptures, and the second is the realization that a woman might not have anyone in her life praying over her. Even if we cannot be together, in the flesh, I can pray the Word of God over you. There is nothing more effective than praying Scripture into the lives of others. And the easiest place for finding a biblical treasure trove to utilize is in the Psalms. Today I pray you leave with an overwhelming sense that God is for you.

How can you know God is for you?

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Romans 8:31-32

Simply stated, the Bible tells us He is. And because He is, Paul moves us to consider the limits God will go on our behalf.

He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?

I’m not really thinking along the lines of whether God is going to give you a new Mercedes or help you win the lottery. You can ask-but I’m thinking more about personal transformation, and greater Kingdom-type long-lasting ventures. Things like:

  • People transformation
  • Situation-reversals
  • Relationship reconciliation, and
  • Mountain-moving of all sorts.

The Offer

Herein lies the offer with a solid guarantee. Do you want to be different? Do you want to see a change in a relationship? Does anyone you work with need the hope found in Jesus? Is there any situation in your family that cries for reconciliation? Are there broken friendships that needs restoration? Are you waiting for God to move a mountain of obstacles in some miraculous way? What about the people you live around? Is there anything you are facing or anyone you know with consequences that are literally life or death in severity.

For thousands of years God has been placing His people in just the right location in exactly the situations necessary, exposing them to needs, hurts, atrocities, pain and disparity. Why? For what purpose? So that we would pray, begging Him to move on their behalf, and believe.

We must ask ourselves if we really expect God to do what we request? Are we ready for Him to do what is not humanly possible—to make a way in the darkest, bleakest situations? Because, if God is for us, who can be against us?

Still, God is for you.

What about you?

Do you believe God is for you?

Are you convinced, like Paul, that He for you in your situation? We’re not manipulating God here. God is Sovereign. He will do what He will do. But are we living today as if our God is for us. personally? If so, are there things that you and I need to get in place if God were to actually answer our prayers? This is the confidence in which Paul encourages us to pray.

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Romans 8:31-32

A Prayer for knowing God is for you

God is for you pinFather,

I pray for my friend, reading today, thanking you for essentially, having her back. Help her believe You are the God who knows her and loves her, regardless of what she has done or failed to do. The reasoning is so clear. You love her so much; you did not spare the pain or torture or humiliation or rejection or even an excruciating death from your own son to offer her such love.

Today, I ask that you grant her what she needs. I pray for a boldness on her part to ask with expectation. Give her the boldness to petition You with a “How will you not graciously give her all things?” mindset. Prepare her for your response. Heal hurts. Repair brokenness. Open doors. Make a way forward. Usher in transformation. More than anything, help her to know you as the God who is for her.

Amen.

Have you received my FREE gift to you? Get 3 resources to help you experience more of God in your everyday life. It’s filled with practical helps for living out what really matters.

FREE STIRRING FAITH BUNDLE

Get my FREE gift to you to help you experience more of God in your everyday life. You will receive two beautiful e-books (Awakening Hope, a 21-Day devotional, 7 Fundamentals for Navigating Relationships, and my Bible Reading Plan for a working strategy for reading the Bible month by month, day by day. You will also begin receiving more resources, news, and encouragement from me while gaining access to the Strange Library -- all of the resources I offer to members of the She Yearns Community without cost. Get your FREE gift today!

We respect your privacy.

If you would like to become a part of the private FB group, She Prays, we would love to have you. Click the image to join.

glimpses of she prays

Don’t forget to check out the latest FREE reading plan available from YouVersion?

She has over TWENTY different reading plans for you to choose from. Just click on the images below to check it out:

The Journey Toward Waiting WellConquering Chaos

If you like She Prays for battling fear you will like finding light

You can meet Cheri on the She Yearns blog for more truth-saturated, Gospel-centered encouragement like this:

 when to quit

 

 

God as our Rock and Stronghold

rock and Stronghold cover

God as our Rock and Stronghold

What kind of week have you had?

I ask, because the headlines are pretty gloomy, filled with bad news, scandal, horrific tragedy, and more bad news.

I ask because we just lost the third young person from our church body within the last few months.

I ask because there are times when we need to be reminded of who God is when it feels like there is nothing left to rely on or trust in.

I ask because regardless of what comes our way in a week, God remains unchanging.

Unlike the world in which we live or anything it has to offer, He is as dependable as an immovable mountain. In fact, He calls Himself, “a Rock like no other” meaning – regardless of what else you try to stand upon, they have nothing on Him – He, alone possesses eternal strength. He is our rock and stronghold.

God as our Rock and Stronghold

He says as much to Isaiah.

Fear not, nor be afraid; have I not told you from of old and declared it? And you are my witnesses! Is there a God besides me? There is no Rock; I know not any.” Isaiah 44:8

And then in 1 Samuel, after Hannah has waited and prayed. Then lived to see and know of God’s abilities to be who He says he is and do what He says he can do, she testifies of this quality.

Hannah Testifies God is a Rock.

There is none holy like the LORD: for there is none besides you; there is no rock like our God.1 Sam 2:2

In other words, whatever you are trying, trusting in, or relying upon—cannot stand against the One who is our place of refuge, our salvation, our strength, safety, and protection from men. There is no one else or no other source who can do what He can do. Not one.

Because of the kind of week we sometimes experience, we need to remember this unchanging characteristic of our God. I find it more than timely and appropriate to pray a verse out of Psalm 71 today that is along this theme.

Be to me a rock of refuge in which to dwell, and a sheltering stronghold to which I may continually resort, which you have appointed to save me, for you are my Rock and my Fortress. Psalm 71:3

Our “Rock of Refuge”

I don’t know if you need a “rock of refuge” right now, but I thought today would be a good day to remind us that He is exactly that. The reality is that life can get so crazy and cloudy that even something so basic as this fundamental Truth that most of us know can seem far off. Even the Psalmist feels the need to ask for Him to be His “rock of refuge.”

What about a “Sheltering Stronghold?”

Last year, a good percentage of glass fell out of one of our doors. Nothing happened to make it fall out, it simply gave way.  The door could no longer serve as a stronghold for keeping out what needs to be out and protecting what is inside. The door became weak and compromised. Easy to penetrate. It more than illuminated our need to ask God to be a “sheltering stronghold” to whom you and I can go.

Then the Psalmist pronounces something extremely important that is likely taken on a whole new dimension in recent days and hours.

For You are my Rock and my Fortress.

He recognizes his reliance cannot be on his defense system, his bank account, the business he has owned and ran for 15 – 20 years that has been so successful, or the established chain that has experienced rampant success. His ability to feed his family may vanish, and one day can turn life completely on its head. There is one thing he really knows:

You are my Rock and my Fortress.

This is what you and I need to really know today as well. Because of these realities of Who God is, we can place our confidence in Him.

A Prayer for Making the Lord our Rock and Stronghold

rock and strongholdLord,

I am so thankful for your Word today.

For the assurances of Who you are and what you promise us – even when we cannot see how it’s all going to turn out.

Right now we are lifting up your Word back to you. We ask you to be who you say you are. Would you be the “Rock,” where there is no other? Be our “rock of refuge” when we are scared, or when we don’t know what is going to happen.

We ask that you be our “sheltering stronghold.” Become for us a force that is impenetrable to whatever is coming against us for Your glory. Not that we ask to escape suffering to further your Kingdom, but that You be our stronghold in the midst of whatever You call us to. Help us to know you as our Rock and our Fortress and let nothing else compare or compete. You alone, the Rock. Our Rescuer. We ask that you be this in our lives today, for we desperately need you and for Your name to be known.

In the glorious and unmatched name of Jesus.

Amen

Have you received my FREE gift to you? Get 3 resources to help you experience more of God in your everyday life. It’s filled with practical helps for living out what really matters.

FREE STIRRING FAITH BUNDLE

Get my FREE gift to you to help you experience more of God in your everyday life. You will receive two beautiful e-books (Awakening Hope, a 21-Day devotional, 7 Fundamentals for Navigating Relationships, and my Bible Reading Plan for a working strategy for reading the Bible month by month, day by day. You will also begin receiving more resources, news, and encouragement from me while gaining access to the Strange Library -- all of the resources I offer to members of the She Yearns Community without cost. Get your FREE gift today!

We respect your privacy.

Don’t forget to check out the latest FREE reading plan available from YouVersion?

She has over TWENTY different reading plans for you to choose from. Just click on the images below to check it out:

The Journey Toward Waiting WellConquering Chaos

If you like She Prays for battling fear you will like finding light

You can meet Cheri on the She Yearns blog for more truth-saturated, Gospel-centered encouragement like this:

 when to quit

 

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