A 21 Day Spiritual Journey: Day 6

“The function of prayer is not to influence God, but rather to change the nature of the one who prays.” ― Søren Kierkegaard

“The function of prayer is not to influence God, but rather to change the nature of the one who prays.”
― Søren Kierkegaard

Today I am having some trouble quieting my soul.

The words to the third verse of “Just As I Am” keep coming to mind:

Just as I am, though tossed about with many a conflict, many a doubt, fightings and fears within, without, O Lamb of God, I come, I come. – Just As I Am, William Bradbury

The world is not falling apart around me. I am not in crisis but I am beset by a plethora of things to do that keep calling me away from the place of quiet prayer. It seems I just get settled in and whamo! Something else comes up to pull me away from the secret place.

I’m beginning to think God’s as much in these distractions as HE is in the devotion. Somehow I am being challenged to walk in contentment and peace even in the place of constant disturbance.

Today’s quotes:

“It isn’t what you have or who you are or where you are or what you are doing that makes you happy or unhappy. It is what you think about it.” 
― Dale Carnegie,


“The greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances.” 
― Martha Washington

“For after all, the best thing one can do when it is raining is let it rain.” 
― Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

So here I am Jesus. Praying in bits and pieces today…fits and starts. Just as I am I come and if you want something different Lord then form it in me.




















Embrace Your Inner Moss Pt. 1

      My friend and I have been having a debate about lawn care. The debate stems from our differing opinions about gardening…and moss.

     He hates moss. He blames moss for the demise of his lawn. He believes killing his moss will bring his grass back. HE BELIEVES IN CAPITAL PUNISHMENT FOR MOSS!!!!

     I on the other hand  am a softer and gentler kind of gardener. I love moss. Moss doesn’t kill; It comes to comfort you after your beloved grass can no longer be with you. I can come up with at least four reasons moss should be let to live:

1. It comes in many beautiful shades and adds contrast to what is otherwise just boring lawn. I know I am in the minority here but I say if something has the gumption to survive a lawn mower it has earned the right to bloom where its planted….And while moss will survive the mower it also doesn’t need it: MORE MOSS=LESS MOWING!

2. Moss is squishy and fun to walk on. Come on can you honestly tell me you wouldn’t rather walk barefoot through a field of moss?

3. You can burn moss! the Irish burned peat instead of wood. I wouldn’t recommend throwing it in your oil burning furnace. But hey! In a pinch pitch a tent and start a peat fire!

4. Surviviorman says that if you’re thirsty moss stores water! It can be rung out and because it is a natural filter you can drink the water without fear of falling down dead from botulism.

     Yep lots of reasons to keep your moss. Maybe I am just lazy but I think we work too hard to alter our landscape to make it look like “Better Homes and Gardens”. Who died and made them Mother Nature anyway!

     I am all for pruning, thinning, mowing, and weeding. But sometimes I think we have just got to relax and let nature take its course….Go with the flow…Work with what we’ve got.

     I have a back lawn that is mostly moss and dandelions. To be fair there is grass too but it doesn’t rule the roost. The grass grows on the moss!

I don’t know but I think it looks O.K.




Are You Being Tucked In Pt.1

“Then Jesus said, ‘Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.'”

You know I have few comforting memories from my child hood as strong as those of bedtime. I can remember my mother and my grandmother tucking me in as a little boy. I can still smell the sheets at my grandmother’s camp and feel the soft pattern of the yellow bed spread under my fingers as Gram would tuck me in. As I lay there she would sit beside me on the bed and do this little ritual. She would take my face in her hands and drawing her finger around the outline of my face she would slowly speak “The moon is round. It has two eyes a nose and a mouth.” Over and over again she would draw her finger around my little boy face until I drifted off to sleep.

I can remember one time I was sick with a fever and a cough. My mother, a nurse by trade, stood over me with a thermometer in hand. She set up the vaporizer and rubbed Vick’s along the edge where the steam came out. I can remember drifting off to sleep with the smell of Menthol filling the room and her standing over me with that look of concern and understanding of what I needed. What a comfort to my young mind to know that someone anyone knew how to help me.

It’s funny but things don’t change as we age. We still desperately need moments of comfort in this world especially when things get dark and cruel as they so often do. Jesus understands that we need his comfort. He knows better than any other the pain this world has to offer and he is uniquely positioned as both God and man to comfort the hearts of anyone who is sorrowing.

As God, you see, he has the power to bring the comfort that we need.  I have been many times called to the bedside of men and women who are preparing to leave this earth and to travel to the next. Honestly, in those moments there is no power inside of me that can bring the comfort that the individual or his family needs. All the power to comfort is found in God alone. God you see says:

“Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the LORD: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him. For he will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease. He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection. Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor the arrow that flies in the day. Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday. Though a thousand fall at your side, though ten thousand are dying around you, these evils will not touch you. ” Psalm 91:1-7 NLT

How can He make these claims? Because He is God. The power of life and eternal life is in His hands. So as God He is positioned  in power to comfort us.

But he is also uniquely qualified to comfort us because he is a man. He understands our sorrows. Isaiah 53 tells us that he was a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And the book of Hebrews tells us :

“This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. ” Heb. 4:15,16 NLT

Jesus desires to bring us comfort this morning and He has the power to bring us comfort because he understands our pain and has the power to heal it.

So many of us though, do not know the Lord’s comfort. We live our Christian lives apart from this place of believer’s anointing. I want to say to you today that there is a place in relationship with Jesus where the pains of the day are lessened and the joy of the Lord is strengthened. There is a place in the anointing where the fears of life are replaced by the peace that passes all understanding. Now some here would say “Of course there is Pastor J. We believe in miracles and healing. So when the healing and the miracles happen we will be in the place of joy and peace. Until then we are just destined to go through a season of crabby.”

     NO brothers and sisters I want to tell you that the comfort of God can come to you, even before the healing does. The comfort, the joy and the peace of God can come to you even before you get your miracle. While you are waiting for the word of God to be fulfilled in your life you can know a joy unspeakable and full of glory!

To be Continued…