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Changes for the Bushway Family

After sixteen years in Colorado Springs, our family will be returning to our roots and moving to Tupelo, Mississippi on June 3, 2013. I have accepted a new position with Hancock Fabrics to be their new Senior Web Developer. My last day as the Director of Information Technology for the NJCAA will be May 31.

In addition to being an excellent professional opportunity for me, this move will also allow us to be a little closer to our family, which is something we have missed through the years. That said, it is very difficult to leave the wonderful people at the NJCAA that I have worked with for the past twelve years. Even more difficult is leaving our church family at Village Seven Presbyterian Church. Through the years and many trials, God has knitted us tightly in to the fabric of the church. Leaving  will be very painful.

Thank you in advance for praying for our family as we prepare to move and make this transition. Also, if you know of someone looking for an awesome house, send them my way! It will be going on the market very shortly.

 

The Silence Of God

When God is Silent

When God is silent & our prayers go unanswered, a temptation is to leave the story. But when we persist during ambiguity, we get to know God.

- Paul Miller

Lamenting

“A lament is a powerful statement of faith. A heart that doesn’t lament breeds unbelief. ”

- Paul Miller

He Reigns

The LORD is in his holy temple; the Lord’s throne is in heaven; his eyes see, his eyelids test, the children of man. – Psalm 11:4

Lord,

My heart aches for my friends. It is heavy in a way that feels like there is no hope. Yet, I am gently reminded that you are in your temple, you reign.

Help me not to listen to the words of the false one, who would have me and my friends flee like a bird to a cave.

You are our King. You love your people. You have not turned a deaf ear to the cries of your dear ones. We serve a risen Savior.

Love my friends well, your precious little ones, in their grief and, what appears to be, insurmountable pain. Comfort them as only you can.

Amen

Where Are You?

Why, O Lord, do you stand far away? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble? – Psalm 10

Lord God,

I confess to you that I often question your wisdom, why you choose to work the way you do. I see and feel pain, and wonder where you are, what you are doing, and question your goodness to us.

I too often equate your love and provision with what I visibly see and how quickly something gets fixed.

You do strengthen the hearts of those who are oppressed or in pain, but you choose to do it in ways that I just do not get, often using pain to bring about what we are not seeking, to cause us to desire you more. Forgive me, Lord, for thinking my ways are better than yours.

You are King forever and ever, and because of Jesus, one day pain will be no more.

Amen

He Is For Us

Father,

As I continue to make my way through Psalms, I am strengthened by David’s assumption in his prayers that You are for him. It is the foundation of his cries out to you, his praise, his identity.

That You, the creator of all, the sustainer of all, the one who has been and will always be, are for me is beyond overwhelming. I can’t take it all in. There are people who love me, but none that are for me like you are. Help me, Father, to live like you are for me. Help me to be bold, to live as a son of the King.

Amen

Learning to be Intentional

I’ve spent the last several months reevaluating my intentionalness (is that even a word?) around several areas in my life: reading, listening, praying, meditating, and learning.

I’m what you could call a distracted skimmer. As I would do any activity, I would look / listen for key parts and then move on, always looking for the shiny nuggets that mattered for me to get something done. It makes for great productivity, but lousy growth. I could read book, but not fully engage in it. I could participate in a conversation, but not fully be there. I could read scripture, but not hear God speaking. You can see what this would do to someone’s prayer life, bible reading, and relationships.

While reading two books, things started crystallizing for me that there was a problem. Don Whitney’s Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life, and Albert Mohler’s Conviction to Lead started to resonate deeply with me. I won’t get into a review of each book, but the main things I walked away with from both books were the importance of meditation, how time continues to tick away, and how I should be intentionally engaging my mind with challenging things. Recognizing that God would have better things for me in my walk with Him, I’ve set out to slowly change things.

  1. I’ve started reading books on a non-tablet device, a Kindle Paperwhite. That part about being easily distracted is huge for me. While iPads and tablets are great doing it all together on one device; at least for me, they make for lousy ways to get alone with God and my thoughts.
  2. I’m forcing myself to read a lot slower. I’ve found I have to intentionally tell myself, sometimes multiple times on a single page, “slow down, reread that, don’t skip sentences”. This has been very difficult, but so worthwhile. I’m retaining more of what I read and feel like I’m much more engaged in the story.
  3. I’ve started honing in on a particular area of scripture I’m reading and really concentrating on it – sometimes 15 – 30 minutes at a time, asking Gospel-centered questions about the text. In short, I’m learning to meditate and it is glorious!
  4. Last week I deleted my Facebook and Instragram accounts. I started with just removing them the apps from my iPhone, and decided to fully commit last week. Again, distraction – not just visiting Facebook, but feeling the desire to share everything about what I’m doing, reading, not being where I’m at. I finally realized that I could not come up any good reason to stay on Facebook. In the end, it was a time-sink that offered nothing back. All the people I need to stay in contact with are either are at church, work, or a phone call away. I still have my Twitter account, but no longer have the app on any of my mobile devices. I find Twitter to be very beneficial, although it, too, can get out of control if not managed.
  5. I’ve started writing out my prayers in a journal that the kids got me for Father’s Day several years ago. I can’t describe how intensely personal this is. It has become some of the richest times I’ve spent with God.
  6. We took the TV out of our bedroom. Instead of clicking on CNN or ESPN, I’m pulling out my Kindle, talking with Kathi, or getting to sleep on time.

These basic changes are creating calm in my soul. They are slowing me down. They are helping me to also become a better listener, both with people and with God. I’m a work-in-progress, and I’m thankful God knows that.

 

The Story

“You can’t have a good story without tension and conflict, without things going wrong. Unanswered prayers create some of the tensions in the story God is weaving in our lives. When we realize this, we want to know what God is doing. What pattern is God weaving? If God is composing a story with our lives, then our lives are no longer static. We aren’t paralyzed by life; we can hope.” Paul Miller, A Praying Life

The Lifter of My Head

Psalm 3 contains some powerful imagery; but, as I was reading this morning, verse 3 showed me God in a new way: “But you, O Lord, are…. the lifter of my head.”

  • a nurse lifting a patient’s head to give him water and medicine
  • a mother gently caressing her child’s chin, lifting their head, speaking assurance into their eyes
  • a father lifting his son’s head to speak strength and encouragement to his soul
  • a friend lifting another friends head, reminding him of who he is in Christ

These are all pictures of God – our healer, our encourager, our strength, our identity. He is the one who touches and is the one who lifts.

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