May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Father, we thank You that we don’t grieve as those who have no hope after our Christian loved ones take up residence in heaven. It’s hard, though, because we’re unable to converse with them or hug them or even to lovingly help them when they’re in need. But we’re also reassured they’re in safe-keeping, in better surroundings than any of us can imagine on this side of heaven. They’re in better physical condition than that of a newborn babe for they’ve exchanged their decaying perishable body for a perfect, imperishable body that is disease free and ageless. To think of their access to the great apostle Paul or the courageous prophet, Daniel, to sit at the very feet of Jesus, to hear the angel choir filling the heavens with their worshipful hallelujahs. It’s more than the human mind can possibly grasp, yet it awaits us when we take our flight to our eternal home. Keep us faithful, hopeful, and full of anticipation for that great and mighty day when we will make that final eternal transition to where our inheritance lies. In the name of Jesus, we pray. Amen

A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

Father, we know the oft-repeated expression that “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never harm me” is a mistaken message certainly not derived from Scripture. Harmful words or hurtful actions do irrevocable damage that will not disappear through first aid or antiseptic. Harmful words have a way of playing over and over in our head and enter into the deep recesses of our hearts. The more we cling to them the greater we risk exaggerating their original message. We build walls, become defensive and do little to resolve the problem. Help us to weigh our words carefully, put ourselves to the test of asking, “Are the words coming from my mouth pleasing in Your sight?” When we habitually put our words to this test we will not use foul language, engage in crude joking, gossip or slander another but we will instead choose to build one another up in love. Keep us faithful in doing so we pray in Jesus name. Amen.

In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

Father, we make it our ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind our own business and to work with our hands, just as Scripture tells us. In doing so we provide for our families and tenderly hold them protecting them from harm’s way. We seek not only to win our family’s respect but also respect from outsiders who observe our Christian conduct. May the things we do with our hands and the ways we show love in our actions truly honor You and be a witness to others in the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.

Hear my voice when I call, O LORD; be merciful to me and answer me. … Do not hide your face from me, do not turn your servant away in anger; you have been my helper. Do not reject me or forsake me, O God my Savior. Though my father and mother forsake me, the LORD will receive me.

Father, You began a good work in me the moment of my conception when You created me in Your own image. Incredibly, You chose to reflect Your divine Being through my thoughts, attitudes, and actions though I am still numbered among the “frail children of dust, … feeble and frail.” I place my trust in You and have found that You never fail. You never give up or abandon the work You started in my life but Your tender mercies and divine plan continue to break me, mold me, and shape me into Your image. The process will not be completed until the day You call us home. Thank You, Father, for being my “Maker, Defender, Redeemer and Friend”. Amen.

Laziness brings on deep sleep, and the shiftless man goes hungry.

Father, Your abundant grace is poured out on humankind like showers of blessings, both for believer and unbeliever alike. Yet it is only as we appropriate Your saving grace that we turn away from evil and walk in the ways of righteousness. Many leaders and rulers have come and gone, but You, Father, are the eternal One whose kingdom knows no end. We humble ourselves in the light of Your Majesty as we bring honor to Your holy name and live as a people who are eager to do what is good. Amen.

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