Category Archives: Prayer

Starting up the week and it’s looking good so far <3

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Monday has arrived. And yes, the calendar page above is from yesterday, but so good I had to share.

The sunny skies and crisp weather are what make autumn one of my favorite seasons. I feel energized which means the laundry is humming and I have meal plans set for the week. Days like these are the ones I wish I had more often. Sigh.

I have big plans to arrive at the end of this day feeling like I completed some things so here are a few ideas to start us off for the week.

Church on Sunday filled my heart to overflowing. The teaching rested on forgiveness and our movie of the week was the recent visit to the biographical drama about Mr. Rogers, “It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”.

I simply cannot say enough good things about both the movie and the shared insights from Pastor Brian. Best quote was hands down,

“Do you know what forgiveness is? It’s a decision we make to release a person from the feeling of anger we have toward them.”

– Fred Rogers

I can’t even read that without the tight places of past hurts opening up. I feel the healing of release of hardness in my heart start to melt the rocky places. And in that softer place I meet Jesus’ love and mercy and compassion – for me and for the ones who wounded me. It was invaluable to me yesterday and continues today. 

Isn’t that what He did for me? Made a decision to release me from His well-deserved wrath for my betrayal of Him?

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This series can only be caught as a live broadcast. It is not like our regular sermons that are archived on the church website. But don’t be glum if you missed it! There is another opportunity to catch this one on Wednesday evening at 7 PM CST right here: https://firstdecatur.online.church

The teaching was just part of a wonderful service which opened with a song that is new to me. You can listen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MqqDc2BIpxs     although I don’t think anyone will every capture the purity of worship through music like our praise team did on Sunday. 

The lyrics got me in a way of deep conviction. The opening line is

“There is a sound I love to hear. It’s the sound of my Savior’s robe when He walks into the room where people pray. Where He hears praises He hears faith.”

Brook Ligertwood, Awake My Soul

Lyrically and musically the entire song was indescribably beautiful. Standing alone, it is a powerful song of worship. But it was anointed and brought conviction to my heart and soul and spirit. Because I believe the words with all my heart. I have experienced what is described. But I have been in a desert for prayer for far too long. 

Oh I have prayed and I have believed and I have wrestled, but it has been a long while since I heard what is described. And I have heard it. Believe me. It is a sound I too love very much. And I knew I was missing something but couldn’t identify it until this song ministered to me.

Something broke yesterday, and this time it wasn’t me. It was whatever has clogged my ears to hear the rustle of His robes. He has been present all along, but with all the noise it was hard to hear the hem that brings healing to whoever touches it. 

I think we will stop here. That’s enough for me and for you to ponder. Be blessed as you start your week. Prayers we all hear the swish of the robe today and the aroma of Christ fills your prayer time and your going forth time until you lay your sweet head down to rest again tonight and then I pray you hear His song over you <3

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Remembering with the rest of you <3

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While a whole generation has grown up and graduated from high school, granted with social distancing or virtually or however the school decided to do it, for the rest of us who are old enough we have a memory of this day in our nation’s history. 

Mine started in the kitchen as I was cleaning up breakfast and pouring another cup of coffee. My neighbor friend down the street called and asked if I had the news on. She must not have known me super well. I never have the news on. 

But I went over in our family room and turned it on. I watched as reporters fed us commentary regarding a tall building along the New York City skyline with smoke and flames shooting out it a far ways up from way high in the sky. Even as I grasped something horrible had happened they began excitedly announcing another plane seemed to be coming. A plane?  I tried to comprehend as I sank to my knees that a plane full of humans had become a fatal weapon launched against an unsuspecting building full of people. Not once, but twice. 

I only got up to grab my Bible off the table and I went down again. I didn’t know what else to do but find Scripture to pray because all words were failing me. At some point I called Russ to ask him if I should get the kids from school. He told me to check on them if I could and I did. They wanted to stay and so I went home where I spent the day pretty much in the same posture of kneeling and prayer and tears. 

This morning as I was coming through town to work I saw a motorcycle off to the side on the overpass. Standing in the middle of our north south highway where it spans the Interstate below stood a man in a Veterans jacket holding a flag. It was cold and damp and windy this morning but I guess he needed to just hold the flag to remember what happened. I cried and prayed wordless prayers for his heart and his story. 

I think of our cities burning, some from human hands and some from wild fires. I think of our heated  conversations as we fight amongst ourselves. Our country is far from perfect, as are all countries. But this is my home country and I feel as helpless now as I did nineteen years ago because I don’t know how we are going to mend the hurts and pains. For all the corrupt politicians and greed of corporations and offenses of each of us big and small, the people I love live here along both coasts and in cities, towns and villages in between. 

So I choose to take the posture I took that day and kneel down, grab onto what God says about us, and pray. We are first and foremost His children, but we have been placed in this world in a certain place for a certain time. Let us live well and honor Him in all we do <3 

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Reflections on Psalm 27 <3

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Well, happy Monday to you! 

We are starting week 5 of the Shelter in Place situation…in case you had lost track of time…

This weekend our church started a six week series on the Psalms. Funny how six weeks sounds like a long time when you are on the front end of it, but looking back it has passed so quickly. It’s all relative.

The years have a way of doing this as well, which is why I am so thankful I make notes and date them in the margins of my bible. 

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Last week, I was honored receive an email from our worship leader asking if I would consider writing a prayer based on the text of this first Sunday’s Psalm.

As a devotional practice, I often rewrite Psalms in my own words…not that I am putting my words over God’s, but I do realize the author of Psalms wrote them in Hebrew..his spoken word… and they have been translated into various forms to fit the language of readers all over the world and all through the ages since. 

So I like to ponder what is being said and then say it back in my own words and so I was comfortable saying yes to this request as it is something I do regularly.

I take no credit for it. It is God’s word just put in my vernacular the way I talk in conversation to a friend, and I am going to add the resulting prayer to bottom of this post. 

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Before we get there, I do want to finish the thought about the dating and note taking in the margins because when I began meditating on this Psalm, I gathered a few of my older Bibles and what a lovely backwards glance they gave me of how God has spoken to me through Psalm 27 over the years. 

Apparently verse 5 has been particularly meaningful to me over time. 

In one bible that has lost the back cover (don’t worry…it isn’t lost…it’s right here in the pile of stuff on the floor by my desk) I find the date 9-10-2010 next to it and the note “Twice today this verse!’

Another bible has this passage circled and a heart next to it. 

And a third is marked with yet another heart and the addition of a note to see Psalm 31:20. 

So before we go to the prayer that resulted from all of this, let’s look at the passages and then a quick thought gleaned from them.

For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion; in the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me; He shall set me high upon a rock.

Psalm 27:5 NKJV

and for reference…

You shall hide them in the secret place of Your presence from the plots of men; You shall keep them secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues.

Psalm 31:20

First off, I find the concept of being hidden away safe in a time of trouble as being a very comforting image. 

If you follow Enneagram information, I am a solid four and thus I feel all of my feelings plus all the feelings around me and if you haven’t noticed…we have an extraordinary amount of feelings flying around these days. 

I am also an over thinker and I have a vivid imagination that needs absolutely no solid facts in order to build up things to be concerned about.

So when you add a pandemic, economic crisis and massive shifts in political power struggles plus how all of this is affecting individual lives all around the world …well…yes…I will take that secret place of the Most High God to hide out in…thank you, very much. 

I am not talking about avoiding reality or escaping from responsibility.

I am talking about getting my reality checks underneath the protection of being in God’s Presence where I can safely sort out what are the things assigned to me and then pray for those who have other assignments. 

To ask for how I can offer help or not add fuel to the fire or be a peacemaker or bring comfort or just be still and wait. 

I also have to add this discovery I made years ago. It was a revelation because it stuck with me and has enlightened my understanding of this passage. 

I remember being interested in the world “pavilion” so I looked it up in the dictionary and was delighted to find that this word; defined as a large often sumptuous tent (so picture roomy and expansive and generous) is derived from Latin “papilion-, papilio or our translation…butterfly. 

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Oh my wild imagination immediately pictured on that day of my discovery, a huge canopy of strong and yet incredibly beautiful butterfly wings spread over me as I sit and wait and think and let God sort through all my turmoil and emotions and fears when I feel overwhelmed.

A butterfly. The very essence of transformation through metamorphosis. 

The butterfly. Who comes from the complete cellular reformation of a caterpillar. 

The butterly. Who crawls along a branch until it is time to spin a cocoon and then melts into goo to be reformed into this lovely creature. 

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Perfect. 

In His Presence, under His pavilion…I am transformed from what I was to what He intended me to be. 

Here is the prayer…hope it blesses you. 

Go read the Psalm for yourself, pull up a spot in the expansive tent and write it out in your own beautiful words <3 

www.laurareimer.net

Father God,

You are our light and You have provided the way of salvation through your Son Jesus Christ. 

You strengthen us and You give us life. 

No matter what forces or attacks come against us, no matter how hard the enemy tries to wear us down and wear us out, we have nothing to be afraid of. 

We sing praises of gratitude and joy for your protection and provision over us.

Our one desire is to live in Your presence every day.

In your presence we find Your beauty and Your glory. 

You are everything we want and everything we need. 

We have set our hearts, minds and spirits on You .

Lord, we pray for Your mercy and grace to be poured out mightily on us. 

Lord, You have promised to hear and answer the cries of Your people when we turn to You.

Today we turn our faces fully to You, our God.

 We ask for Your forgiveness, healing, restoration and peace over your church and over this land. 

Lord, our ears are tuned to Your instruction. 

Give us teachable and repentant hearts. 

Deliver us, Lord, from the works of evil that would destroy us. 

Reveal Your truth and activate Your living Word in us. 

We believe we will see Your goodness in our land during our lifetime.

We wait in joyful anticipation of what our God will do in the days to come! 

May Your Spirit guide us and hold us steadfastly as we actively wait in faith for Your perfect timing. 

In Jesus’ Name 

Amen

Prayer based on Psalm 27 <3 Laura Reimer
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