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Prayer, Plain and Simple

Prayer, Plain and Simple

Daily Prayer Archives

Prayer for a Good Work Ethic

posted by Mark and Jill

Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.  (2 Timothy 2:15) Good planning and hard […]

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A Prayer for Perspective

posted by Mark and Jill

Then Elisha prayed, ‘O Lord, open his eyes and let him see!’ The Lord opened the young man’s eyes, and when he looked up, he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire” 2 Kings […]

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A Prayer for Servant Leadership

posted by Mark and Jill

“Here I am Lord, send me” (Isaiah 6:8).  “Father, not my will but yours be done…”  ~Jesus Before I can be trusted to wield the blessings, authority, power, and resources of God – and this is certainly His intent– I […]

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A Prayer To Win the Battle

posted by Mark and Jill

Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him for the splendor of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying: “Give thanks to the Lord,     for his love endures […]

A Prayer for A Revived Conscience

posted by Mark and Jill

But my people…have stumbled off the ancient highways and walk in muddy paths. (Jeremiah 18:15) Cling to your faith in Christ, and keep your conscience clear. For some people have deliberately violated their consciences; as a result, their faith has been […]

Paul’s Instructions on Prayer

posted by Mark and Jill

I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can […]

A Prayer for My High School Student

posted by Mark and Jill

You must influence them; do not let them influence you! (Jeremiah 15: 19b) Father, As my child prepares for another year of High School, hear my cry! First, I thank You for my child. What a gift you have given. Please […]

A Prayer for Correction

posted by Mark and Jill

So correct me, Lord, but please be gentle. Jeremiah 10:24 If you dare pray this prayer, pray, pray this prayer: Search me, O God, and know my heart;     test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything […]

A Prayer for Holistic Holiness

posted by Mark and Jill

Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ comes again.   (1 Thessalonians 5:23)   Paul prayed that his […]

A Prayer to Understand the Fear of the Lord

posted by Mark and Jill

The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life. (Proverbs 14:27) The fear of the Lord adds length to life. (Proverbs 10:27) The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge. (Proverbs 1:7) The angel of the Lord […]

A Prayer to Break Bondages

posted by Mark and Jill

Good News for the Oppressed The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me, for the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and to proclaim that captives […]

A Prayer to Stop Blaming God

posted by Mark and Jill

People ruin their lives with the foolish things they do, and then they blame the Lord for it. (Proverbs 19:3) “Why didn’t God help me keep my boyfriend?” “Why did God allow me to go bankrupt?” “Why doesn’t God get […]

A Prayer for Reign

posted by Mark and Jill

Let my teaching fall like rain and my words descend like dew, like showers on new grass, like abundant rain on tender plants. (Deut. 32:2) As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to […]

A Prayer To Eat Right

posted by Mark and Jill

Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength? Why pay for food that does you no good? Listen to me, and you will eat what is good. You will enjoy the finest food. (Isaiah 55:2) The […]

A Prayer for Google-Eyed Parents

posted by Mark and Jill

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. (James 1:5) “I am the Lord who heals you.” (Exodus 15:26) We had dear friends, parents of two toddlers, stay with us for two weeks recently. […]

A Prayer to Learn to Pray Without Distraction

posted by Mark and Jill

Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart. (Colossians 4:2) If you are like me, you struggle with staying focused when you pray. The answer is simply this:  keep the thanks flowing! As we lift up the people in […]

A Prayer for Grace and Peace

posted by Mark and Jill

May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace.   (1 Corinthians 1:3) Seventeen times in Scripture, the writers of the epistles bless their readers with these two virtues:  Grace and Peace. When we look […]

A Prayer for an Obedient Heart

posted by Mark and Jill

If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully keep all his commands that I am giving you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations of the world.You will experience all these blessings […]

A Prayer to Grow Old Gracefully, Fruitfully, and Strong

posted by Mark and Jill

Even in old age they will still produce fruit;     they will remain vital and green. (Psalm 92:14) I will be your God throughout your lifetime— until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for […]

A Prayer for Hospitality

posted by Mark and Jill

And everyone who has given up houses…for my sake, will receive a hundred times as much in return and will inherit eternal life. (Mark 19:29) Cheerfully share your home with those who need a meal or a place to stay. […]

A Prayer for Blind and Deaf and Dumb Church-Goers

posted by Mark and Jill

Who is as blind as my own people, my servant?     Who is as deaf as my messenger? Who is as blind as my chosen people,     the servant of the Lord? You see and recognize what is right     but refuse to […]

A Prayer to Tend the Garden of My Soul

posted by Mark and Jill

Sow for yourselves according to righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God); reap according to mercy and loving-kindness. Break up your uncultivated ground, for it is time to seek the Lord, to inquire for and of Him, and to require […]

A Prayer to Find God’s Promises

posted by Mark and Jill

Search the book of the Lord, and see what he will do… for the Lord has promised this. His Spirit will make it all come true. (Isaiah 34:16 NLT) What do you need today? Hope? A home? Joy? Encouragement? A […]

A Prayer for a Heart Change

posted by Mark and Jill

“The Lord your God will change your heart… so that you will love him with all your heart and soul and so you may live!” (Deuteronomy 30:6 NLT) “And I will give you a new heart, and I will put […]

A Prayer For My To-Do List

posted by Mark and Jill

Carefully determine what pleases the Lord…Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do. (Ephesians 5:10,17) Paul encourages us to not allow life to happen to us, but rather to live intentionally – living out God’s intentions for our […]

A Prayer of Belonging

posted by Mark and Jill

“I belong to Jesus.” (Galatians 6:17) To belong means to be “rightly placed in a specified position; to be rightly classified in or assigned to a specified category; to fit in a specified place or environment.” (~Siri) Are you unsure […]

A Sin Sandwich

posted by Mark and Jill

When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. […]

A Prayer for Our Garden

posted by Mark and Jill

Lord, you poured out blessings on your land! …Our land will be filled with his glory.   Yes, the Lord pours down his blessings. Our land will yield its bountiful harvest. (Psalm 85:1,9,12) The Lord God placed the man in […]

A Prayer Against Cancer

posted by Mark and Jill

This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms. Now he is far above any ruler or authority or power or leader or […]

God Can Work With Anything We Give Him

posted by Mark and Jill

“He turned the intended curse into a blessing because the Lord your God loves you.” (Deuteronomy 23:5) Need a miracle? Got fish? Got bread? Boom! God can make a picnic out of anything we give Him. Perhaps you’ve messed up […]

A Prayer to Experience a Vibrant Life

posted by Mark and Jill

And the very words I have spoken to you are spirit and LIFE. (John 6:63) These instructions are not empty words—they are your LIFE! (Deuteronomy 32:47) Listen carefully to my words. Don’t lose sight of them. Let them penetrate deep […]

A Prayer for a Reality Check

posted by Mark and Jill

“This is what God says: Why do you disobey the Lord’s commands and keep yourselves from prospering? You have abandoned the Lord, and now he has abandoned you!”   2 Chronicles 24:20 “If you remain in me and I in […]

God Cares For You – A Prayer to Believe the Truth

posted by Mark and Jill

“The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him.” (Nahum 1:7) “My people don’t recognize my care for them.” (Isaiah 1:3) “…For they did not believe God or trust him to […]

A Prayer for Emmanuel A.M.E. Church

posted by Mark and Jill

“They shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.” (Matthew 1:23) Father, Our hearts sorrow deeply for the nine victims of the massacre shootings at Emmanuel Church in Charleston, South Carolina. A pastor, a bible teacher, a […]

A Prayer for a New Season of the Soul

posted by Mark and Jill

Look, the winter is past,     and the rains are over and gone. The flowers are springing up,     the season of singing birds has come,     and the cooing of turtledoves fills the air. (Song of Songs 2:11,12) For the spring is really […]

A Prayer for Deliverance From Troubling Circumstances

posted by Mark and Jill

Your road led through… a pathway no one knew was there! (Psalm 77:19) This Psalm was written by a poet who was experiencing a painful crisis. Nothing seemed to be working in his life and his stress level was at its […]

Am I a Disciple of Jesus? …Or Not?

posted by Mark and Jill

Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith. (2 Corinthians 13:5) I, Jill, was always good at showing […]

Don’t Brood Over Your Past – A Prayer to Press Forward

posted by Mark and Jill

 God keeps such people so busy enjoying life that they take no time to brood over the past. (Ecclesiastes 5:20) I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to […]

A Prayer to Desire God

posted by Mark and Jill

Whom have I in heaven but you? I desire you more than anything on earth. Psalm 73:25 Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires. Psalm 37:4 For God is working in you, giving you […]

A Prayer to Grow in Patience

posted by Mark and Jill

May God, who gives this patience and encouragement, help you live in complete harmony with each other, as is fitting for followers of Christ Jesus. (Matthew 15:5) Love is patient. (1 Corinthians 13:4) May you experience the love of Christ, […]

A Prayer for the Embittered

posted by Mark and Jill

Watch out that no poisonous root of bitterness grows up to trouble you, corrupting many. (Hebrews 12:15) Then I realized that my heart was bitter,     and I was all torn up inside.  I was so foolish and ignorant—     I must […]

God Underwrites Trouble Insurance

posted by Mark and Jill

“Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God,     and keep the vows you made to the Most High. Then call on me when you are in trouble,     and I will rescue you,     and you will give me glory.”  ~Psalm 50:14,15 We buy […]

A Wedding Anniversary Prayer

posted by Mark and Jill

Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose. (Philippians 2: 2) “They say when you marry in June, you’re a bride all your life.” ~ Johnny Mercer […]

A Prayer for Goal-Setting

posted by Mark and Jill

Our goal is to please him. (2 Corinthians 5:9) The Apostle Paul’s goal in life was to live each moment to please God. We are urged to follow his example. What pleases God? Here are a few Scriptures that help […]

A Prayer to See From God’s POV

posted by Mark and Jill

So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last […]

Learning To Love Yourself

posted by Mark and Jill

To acquire wisdom is to love yourself. Proverbs 19:8 Loving and forgiving others is a skill that few of us fully perfect. Loving and forgiving oneself is no less of a challenge. Reading in Proverbs today, this Scripture stood out as though […]

A Prayer to Remember The Fallen

posted by Mark and Jill

There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” John 15:13 “The Lord cares deeply when his loved ones die.” Psalm 116:15 “…That from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which […]

A Prayer for Victims of PTSD

posted by Mark and Jill

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you. (Psalm 32:8) The Lord is well aware of our need for compassionate eye contact. Looking into the […]

A Prayer to Promote Peaceful Plans

posted by Mark and Jill

“Joy fills hearts that are planning peace!” Proverbs 16:20  “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 […]

A Gardening Tip from the Bible

posted by Mark and Jill

May the nations praise you, O God.     Yes, may all the nations praise you. Then the earth will yield its harvests,     and God, our God, will richly bless us. (Psalm 67:5,6) We have a large garden that yields us great fruit […]

A Prayer for Goal Setting

posted by Mark and Jill

Let love be your highest goal!   1 Corinthians 14:1 There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it. Luke 10:42 Prioritization is a big deal. We spend big bucks on books that help us align […]

A Prayer for Small Beginnings

posted by Mark and Jill

“Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin…” Zechariah 4:10 If you can’t move your mountain today, you can at least move your molehill. What do you have faith for today? Do you […]

A Prayer to Fix Things

posted by Mark and Jill

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you! Isaiah 26:3 So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot […]

Hurry Up and Learn to Wait

posted by Mark and Jill

I wait quietly before God, for my victory comes from him….Let all that I am wait quietly before God, for my hope is in him.    Psalm 62:1, 5  Modern humans are not skilled at waiting. We hate red lights, we […]

A Prayer For America

posted by Mark and Jill

“Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.” 2 […]

You Have Arrived at Someplace Safe

posted by Mark and Jill

The other day I was taking a carload of clothes and items to a thrift store called, “Somplace Safe.” My GPS was guiding me, and when I reached my destination Siri chimed, “You have arrived at Someplace Safe.” That was […]

A Prayer To Stop Grumbling

posted by Mark and Jill

And don’t grumble as some of them did, and then were destroyed by the angel of death. (1 Corinthians 10:10) The people refused to enter the pleasant land, for they wouldn’t believe his promise to care for them. Instead, they […]

Prayer for a Renewed Mind

posted by Mark and Jill

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Romans 12:2 The Word of God can do what 120 years of daily psychotherapy cannot:  change the chemistry of the mind. Therapy […]

A Prayer for a Spiritual GPS

posted by Mark and Jill

The Lord is good and does what is right; he shows the proper path to those who go astray. He leads the humble in doing right, teaching them his way. The Lord leads with unfailing love and faithfulness all who […]

A Prayer to Elevate Your Thought Life

posted by Mark and Jill

“And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” Phil. 4:8 NLT “For […]

It’s a Wonder-filled Life

posted by Mark and Jill

No wonder my heart is glad, and I rejoice. My body rests in safety. Psalm 16:9 My heart is confident in you, O God; my heart is confident. No wonder I can sing your praises! Psalm 57:7 Yes, you have […]

Shut Up Or Shout

posted by Mark and Jill

“Do not even talk,” Joshua commanded. “Not a single word from any of you until I tell you to shout. Then shout!” Joshua 6:10 “Be still, and know that I am God!” Psalm 46:10 The Israelites had messed up God’s […]

A Prayer to Win the Race

posted by Mark and Jill

“…Let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on […]

A Prayer to Stop Judging

posted by Mark and Jill

“Even if I have sinned, that is my concern, not yours. You think you’re better than I am…” ~ Job (Job 19:4,5) “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged.” ~Jesus (Matt. 7:1) “God alone, who gave the […]

A Prayer for An Extraordinary Life

posted by Mark and Jill

“And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ.” ~Paul (1 Corinthians 11:1) Often we look at the apostles in Scripture and wonder at their strength, productivity, diligence and power. We sigh and say, “No wonder they were able […]

A Prayer for Our Future

posted by Mark and Jill

The righteous keep moving forward… ~Job (from Job 17:9) I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead… ~Paul (Phil. 3:13) Look straight ahead, and fix your eyes on what lies before you. ~Solomon […]

A Prayer for Hope for the Hopeless

posted by Mark and Jill

I pray that God, the source of HOPE, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident HOPE through the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13) On any given day one […]

Jesus Asked for Volunteers

posted by Mark and Jill

When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord […]

Close Proximity to the Cross

posted by Mark and Jill

Standing near the cross were Jesus’ mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary (the wife of Clopas), and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother standing there beside the disciple he loved, he said to her, “Dear woman, here is your […]

A Prayer to Give Extravagantly

posted by Mark and Jill

Why waste such expensive perfume? Mark 14:4 A few days before Jesus was falsely accused, sentenced, tried in a trial that was a mockery, and executed (soon to defeat death and be raised back to life by the power of […]

A Prayer for Anger Management

posted by Mark and Jill

So Jesus came to Jerusalem and went into the Temple. After looking around carefully at everything, he left because it was late in the afternoon. Then he returned to Bethany with the twelve disciples… When they arrived back in Jerusalem, Jesus […]

A Prayer for Holy Week

posted by Mark and Jill

…”He was despised, and we did not appreciate His worth… ”  Isaiah 53:3-4 AMP For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes… Romans 1:16 NLT […]

Who I Am in Jesus

posted by Mark and Jill

Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! (2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT) I love the notion of starting over – of God wiping the slate clean and re-designing my life […]

A Prayer to Find God

posted by Mark and Jill

“Surely the Lord is in this place, and I wasn’t even aware of it! …What an awesome place this is! It is none other than the house of God, the very gateway to heaven!” ~Jacob (Genesis 28:16,17) Jacob’s plans had […]

I Found My Happiness

posted by Mark and Jill

Make me walk along the path of your commands, for that is where my happiness is found. Psalm 119:35 My favorite part of the The Hobbit is when Gandalf urges the dwarves and Bilbo to stay on the path. He warns them that […]

Chopra and Oprah and Jesus

posted by Mark and Jill

“By myself I can do nothing… I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.” ~Jesus (John 5:30) Contrast these words spoken by Jesus with new-age guru Deepak Chopra:  “Know that you are already a complete spiritual being. […]

God is My Life Coach

posted by Mark and Jill

 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:10 God’s masterpiece. This is who we are, and when he created us, […]

Boat-Sinking Blessings

posted by Mark and Jill

There was a man named Jabez who was more honorable than any of his brothers. His mother named him Jabez because his birth had been so painful. He was the one who prayed to the God of Israel, “Oh, that […]

Shepherds and City Folk

posted by Mark and Jill

The Lord is my Shepherd to feed, guide, and shield me, I shall not lack. Psalm 23:1 (Amplified) I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd risks and lays down His own life for the sheep. John 10:11 (Amplified) Bless Israel, […]

Restoring the Presence of God in our Marriage

posted by Mark and Jill

“It is time to bring back the Ark of our God, for we neglected it…” 1 Chron. 13:3 “The Ark of God remained there in Obed-edom’s house for three months, and the Lord blessed the household of Obed-edom and everything […]

Enrolling in the School of Communication

posted by Mark and Jill

May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. Psalm 19:14 “I…say only what the Father taught me.” ~Jesus. John 8:28 I am quite certain that it’s […]

Pray While Swiffering

posted by Mark and Jill

I (Jill) like the Fly Lady. She has taught me to not worry about perfectionism. And I love my mom. She taught me how to clean a house thoroughly. But as much as I love her, her voice of perfectionism […]

End of the Rope Prayer

posted by Mark and Jill

God… I can’t. You can. Please do. Thank you. Enough said.

“Peace!”… and there was Peace…

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Maybe the bills have to be paid, and there’s not enough in the account. Perhaps the kids need to be tended, and there’s not enough time. There could be a strange nagging pain, and you’re afraid. Underlying everything perhaps there’s […]

Absolution to Conversion

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Repentance finishes with change – conversion. How will I now live and be different? With each of the specific sins connected to each of the specific Commands I have broken I will seek God for a counter move, a contrary […]

Confession to Absolution

posted by Mark Herringshaw

The work of repentance begins with confession. Confession is agreeing with God about my condition. I have asked God to search my heart and to show me sin. I have acknowledged this in detail and confessed the specifics to him. […]

The Ten Commandments Measure My Life

posted by Mark Herringshaw

“God, the standard I level against myself is your standard, not my own. You have given us all the stipulations of righteousness. We know what you expect and how you have designed us to live. We might break these laws, […]

God Search Me: Know, Expose, Purge, Redeem the Evil in My Soul

posted by Mark Herringshaw

“God you know all. You know me and love me. But not all is well. God hates the wickedness in the world, and though you love me you must hate the evil that has infected and compromised your purpose and […]

Against Those Against God – a Place for Hatred

posted by Mark Herringshaw

But not all is well… Psalm 139:19-22. A stark intrusion enters the frame. Lovely thoughts of God’s loving awareness are shattered by an equally real but bitter awareness that evil exists. Not all in God’s world is as God intended. […]

God is Obsessed with Loving Me!

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Psalm 139:17-18 relays the most shocking and surprising of all truth… God is fascinated by me!  17 How precious are your thoughts about me, O God.      They cannot be numbered! 18 I can’t even count them;      they outnumber the grains of sand!   And when […]

God Starts the Bidding at Infinity

posted by Mark Herringshaw

We’re obsessed with building self esteem. That’s futile. What does it matter what I think of myself? When we stupidly grant one human the right to “choose” whether or not another human has “right to life” we have shattered the […]

No Final Right to Privacy

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Privacy is an illusion. Psalm 139:7-12  7 I can never escape from your Spirit!      I can never get away from your presence! 8 If I go up to heaven, you are there;      if I go down to the grave, you are there. 9 If […]

The Sanity of Accepting a Final Exposure

posted by Mark Herringshaw

There are no secrets from God. All is exposed to him. Living in denial of this fact, in the illusion that I have the luxury of secrecy is a kind of twisted deception and leads me to live my life […]

“After God’s own heart…”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

King David of Israel was “A man after God’s own heart…” He screwed up many times in his life. He proved to be a lousy father, an unfaithful husband, impulsive, reactive, impatient, sometimes emotionally unstable. But David chased God with all his […]

Search My Heart, Oh God!

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I don’t know myself nearly as well as I suppose. I don’t really know my own motives, or the roots of my thoughts and actions. I know that I don’t know… That much is all I’m confident to say. A […]

On Mahatma Ghandi’s Birthday – A Challenge to Pray to a Personal God

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Today is Mahatma Ghandi’s birthday. Ghandi, the spiritual and national father of post-British India is renowned for his none-violent strategies of revolution that led his nation into independence. In my new book, The Karma of Jesus I tell a story […]

If and only if… part 4

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Jesus makes bold and audacious promises about the power and effectiveness of prayer.  If we ask, we will receive. But in the process of making claims Jesus also connects specific conditions to these promises.  Here’s one final dangerous “if/then.”   […]

If and only if… part 2

posted by Mark Herringshaw

There’s a second Biblical condition to answered prayer. Jesus makes some amazing promises about the power of intercession, then attaches some contingencies. You can check out Thursday’s post if you’d like to explore this more. Bottom line: God has put […]

If and only if… part 1

posted by Mark Herringshaw

We pray behind some remarkable promises from Jesus about the power of prayer. You can check out yesterday’s post if you’d like to see a few of those commitments. Essentially, the founder and CEO of the universe offers to put […]

Carrying Everything to God in Prayer

posted by nsymmonds

Oh, what peace we often forfeit,Oh, what needless pain we bear,All because we do not carryEverything to God in prayer! “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” By Joseph Scriven I was reminded of this hymn this morning when one […]

Praying-in Breakfast

posted by Mark Herringshaw

“Give us today our daily bread”   What’s for breakfast? That’s an important question, one of the most important questions in our family, and probably in yours too. Jesus said we don’t live by bread alone – we also need […]

Putting “Play” in “Pray”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I have a new spiritual director: the four year old daughter of a friend who confides her heart to God the way she whispers to her Teddy Bear and the way she giggles when her father whisks her off her […]

Catching God’s Virus

posted by Mark Herringshaw

There’s a lot of talk these days about flu bugs and pandemics. Is God contagious? If we get close, can we “catch” whatever he has? Here’s a bit from my book, Nine Ways God Always Speaks. Beware.   Getting close […]

To God, There’s No Such Thing as Petty Injustice

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Can God be bothered with the minor issues in our lives, those small offenses we suffer and sometimes inflict on others?  Does god care about that stuff? In my book Six Prayers God Always Answers I argue that he does.  […]

God as the King of Torts

posted by Mark Herringshaw

  I am beginning a prayer experiment today.  You’re welcome to join me.    I read again this week Jesus’ story in Luke’s gospel (chapter 18) about a widow who comes to a judge asking for justice. The judge – […]

The Smell of Injustice and the Incense of Prayer

posted by Mark Herringshaw

  In Six Prayers God Always Answers, Jennifer Schuchmann and I argue that pleas for justice are one of the appeals that always move God to action.  We sometimes imagine that God values passive self deprecation.  Wrong!  In the Bible […]

Prayer as Anger Management

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Last week a friend sent me a link to a website featuring articles about “anger management.”  I’m not sure if he felt I needed this information, but he did ask what I thought about the approach.  I had to tell […]

Friends with God: Psalm 143:8-9

posted by Mark Herringshaw

King David banked everything on his friendship with God. God was everything to David.  Here’s how he describes that relationship in Psalm 143:8-9.  Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning,      for I am trusting you.   Show me where to walk,      for I give […]

God uses “heart recognition software”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

New experience: I am writing this post using the voice recognition software in my computer. I’ve never used this feature before and it is a weird experience.  When I first began to write from a keyboard it took time for […]

Friends with God: Psalm 143:5-7

posted by Mark Herringshaw

David’s friendship with God was based on what he knew about God; what David knew came by observing God’s past actions. David was able to lay everything on the line in prayer because he knew God’s character was dependable. His splendid […]

Wheeler-Dealer God iv: Poker with Jesus

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I believe God does bargain, but his terms are high stakes. Most of the time I don’t have courage to stay in the game. I fold my hand before the bidding starts. Here’s another clip from Six Prayers God Always […]

Wheeler-Dealer God iii

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I need wisdom, and fast. I have a challenge before me. It’s a good thing – actually too much of a good thing. I need wisdom and perspective beyond my own capacity to make the right decision between two good […]

Wheeler-Dealer God ii

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Bargaining with God: Personally, this is a pressing question for me at this moment, here and now. I need something very specific from God this week, something deeply personal and practical and yet completely out of my hands to deliver. […]

Wheeler-Dealer God i

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Will God cut a deal? I don’t know about you, but I often pray as though I believe he will. Is bargaining prayer legit? Will God swap favor of favor? Let’s explore this question this week. I’ll prime the pump […]

“The prayer God hates to answer… but will”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

On Wednesday I posted an excerpt from an interview that poet and force behind www.popthought.com , Alex Ness posted on his blog last year. Here’s another. Background: We’re talking about “Six Prayers God Always Answers,” one of the books I’ve […]

Putting the Screws on God

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Last year, my poet/blogger/cultural-critic/brain-trust behind “Popthought” friend Alex Ness, ran an interview he did reviewing “Six Prayers God Always Answers” the book I wrote last year with Jennifer Schuchmann. Alex has a poignant way of cutting through the “c” to get […]

Praying from the Gut

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Sometimes I “try” to pray, with a deliberate discipline and effort. Well and good. But other times I find that prayers come bursting out of me accidently. I wonder, is reaching out to God when I’m at the raw edges […]

Bare Naked Prayer

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I’m feeling vulnerable in my relationship with God today. I began by asking him for wisdom about our family finances, which – with two kids in college and a couple boys eating us out of house and home – are […]

Prayer is…

posted by Mark Herringshaw

God is teaching me to talk. Like a parent patiently listening and answering a stumbling and fumbling 18 month old child who is just learning the ropes of human language, God sitts with me as I bumble my way through […]

The Good, the Bad, the Ugly… and God

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Either way, we’re doomed to failure! Go figure. In the last 12 hours I’ve had conversations with two friends; both are in way over their heads; both are struggling with their jobs and businesses; both are desperate for God; each […]

“I can’t. You can. Please do. Thank you!”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I looked at my calendar for the day. It’s packed. A two hour meeting begins at 8:00 AM. Another follows without a break. If I’m efficient, I’ll be able to hurry back to my office for an hour to return […]

“Down-and-Dirty, Honest-to-God!”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I read again today an old poem of prayer.  It’s 3,000 years old, but tell me, can you relate?  I waited patiently for the Lord to help me,      and he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of […]

Bible Prayer: The Priestly Blessing

posted by nsymmonds

A part of praying plain and simple is realizing that prayer has already been well laid out for us in the Bible. Praying God’s word back to Him is one of the most simple things we can do and it doesn’t […]

Eating Prayer

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Our impulse to beat ourselves up in order to find God dies hard.   The wonderful film “Babette’s Feast” tenderly and playfully challenges Christendom’s assumption that self-denial cuts a path to spirituality. The story takes place on the desolate coast […]

No Pain, No Gain… No Way!

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Do you have a prayer hero, a role model or “guide” for spiritual direction? Whether or not we choose one consciously most of us probably have some impression in our minds about what proper prayer looks like and that impression probably […]

Tennis with God

posted by Mark Herringshaw

Communication takes a miracle. The 500 most commonly used English words have an average of 28 meanings each! So the odds that you actually know what I’m saying here are not very good. The odds that I know what I’m […]

“Praying in Route”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

“For many years I was bothered by the thought that I was a failure at prayer. Then one day I realized I would always be a failure at prayer; and I’ve gotten along much better ever since!” Brother Lawrence   […]

“No More Mr. Plastic Man”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

My wife Jill and I just had our 26th anniversary. If you could only know what a miracle that really is! Obviously, I married up.  And even then, we almost never got started. The day I met her I made […]

“Prayer Doesn’t Work…”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I suppose one of the reasons I got this gig to do a prayer blog for Beliefnet is because I’ve co-written two books with my friend Jennifer Schuchmann about communicating with God. Our first, “Six Prayers God Always Answers – […]

“Unfit to Pray”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

I’m in no shape to pray. So I will.  At the moment I feel anything but spiritual. I’m exhausted, hungry, in need of a shower and buzzing with that vague sense of irritation I often pass off as my “moodiness.”  […]

“Breaking my Addiction to Religion”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

My name is Mark. I’m a recovering religious addict.   You should know this on day one of this blog about prayer. Truth be told, launching “Prayer Plain and Simple” with Nicole Symmonds is part of my treatment. We want […]

Previous Posts

Prayer for a Good Work Ethic
Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.  (2 Timothy 2:15) Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but ...

posted 10:39:27am Sep. 01, 2015 | read full post »

A Prayer for Perspective
Then Elisha prayed, ‘O Lord, open his eyes and let him see!’ The Lord opened the young man’s eyes, and when he looked up, he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire” 2 Kings 6:17.  Things looked ...

posted 10:24:35am Aug. 27, 2015 | read full post »

A Prayer for Servant Leadership
“Here I am Lord, send me” (Isaiah 6:8).  “Father, not my will but yours be done…”  ~Jesus Before I can be trusted to wield the blessings, authority, power, and resources of God – and this is certainly His intent– I must come ...

posted 12:17:30pm Aug. 25, 2015 | read full post »

A Prayer To Win the Battle
Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him for the splendor of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying: “Give thanks to the Lord,     for his love endures forever.” As they began to sing and ...

posted 1:27:27pm Aug. 24, 2015 | read full post »

A Prayer for A Revived Conscience
But my people…have stumbled off the ancient highways and walk in muddy paths. (Jeremiah 18:15) Cling to your faith in Christ, and keep your conscience clear. For some people have deliberately violated their consciences; as a result, their ...

posted 11:24:10am Aug. 22, 2015 | read full post »

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