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Prayer

It comes like a heavy blanket, oppressive and suffocating.

It perverts perspective, making us feel confused, alone.

When darkness comes, it tries to destroy our joy.

It’s not welcome and usually comes when we least expect it.

Lately, I feel it’s grip.

Pulling

me

down

I see the darkness as I watch my African daughter grieve. I sense it when there is conflict in my home. I feel it in the struggle as we are engaging in God’s work on the other side of the globe right now. The more I know, the more I suffer.

Jesus allows the darkness in our lives–the struggles, trials, the valley of the shadow of death.

He uses the dark valleys to illuminate Himself.


Everything else stripped away. The layers of fluff and stuff and insignificance vanish in the darkness.

It is in the valley we need the light.

Sometimes it’s the only place we see the light.

When it is dark, pitch black, the fear creeps in, the air stifling, it is there in the darkness where the only light we have is His Word.

He is the Word made flesh.

Psalm 18:28
You, O LORD, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light.

It is in the darkness that we recognize our need for the light.

It is the darkness that makes His light in us shine brighter.

You can’t have a light without a dark to stick it in.  ~Arlo Guthrie

Do you feel the vise? The heavy pull. Lean into the darkness, so you can find Him.

How can I pray for you today?

by Kristen Welch of We are THAT family

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  1. 1
    Charlotte says:

    I have some troubles with my application for university…please pray that it will work out and that I get accepted because I have no idea what I should do next year if I can’t start university.

  2. 4

    Please, pray that the Lord will give me the strenght to do what I feel he is calling me to do. As new christian divorce mom is scary to move foward to what you know God is call ing you to do. About homeschooling our 10 soon 11 yrs old son. I need to quit my job and depend on child support, my roommate rent and I am going to need some cash assistance from the goverment. I hadnever done that before, but, trusting the Lord is all I can do. Blessings!
    Vanessa
    my blog: Daily Blessing blogspot

  3. 6

    Pray I can find support through my darkness in a way that will be healthy and draw me to God.

  4. 7

    Don’t pray for me; I’m praying for you.

    • 8

      Thanks…probably not a coincidence that I wrote this post weeks before I would experience kidney failure 12 hours before out trip to Africa—thank you, I need it.

      • 9

        Certainly NOT a coincidence! Wow! Praying for you and your family as you continue to seek medical answers as well as clarity on your path. God does light our path, and that light only lights the next step not the steps we will take after that.

  5. 10
    Annonymous says:

    Certainly feeling the darkness and needing His peace

  6. 12

    Pray that I will follow God’s will for my life and not my own plans! I’m praying for you as well.

  7. 13

    I am preparing this coming week to step into the darkness of 100,000 lives torn apart by war and hatred and fear. No homes, no food, no hope of anything changing soon. But this I know, LIGHT shines brightest in the deepest part of night.

    In the shadows, in the times I cannot see: I know HE can and HE shines and darkness is not dark to Him and YES He lives in ME. I was CREATED for dark places. And I do not carry a little light, but the Light of the World somehow manages to squeeze Himself into this small lantern who said YES. Send me and lets make the night shine as noonday, You and I.

    Darkness your hours are very very short. The Dawn is coming when the SON rises with healing in His wings. We fly Him and I and Morningstar He is, He shines and night bows its knee and drains away at His coming, even in the little lamps that say Yes to Him.

  8. 14

    Mission life has taken its toll on me physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. The spiritual hit has been the worst. I feel stripped.

    • 15

      I get this. I’m so sorry, but thankful His mercies are new every morning

      • 16
        Betty Draper says:

        I so get this too Carrie…we are missionaries in Papua New Guinea and my husband is in leadership where they say it rises and falls with leadership. those rises and falls are felt to the deepest part of us and takes it toll. God has to give new mercy out every day for I use all of yesterdays up. We see so many have to be sent home for repair, refreshment due to the battle serving on a foreign field. There are oppressions on some soils like no other. There are times we go toe to toe in battle with the devil for He wants to stop the gospel from going to the region beyond. Like all battles one is always, always so tired. I pray God will bring refreshment to your soul, body and spirit Carrie. You must make it your mission to get yourself well in all these areas so you may go out and do battle again soldier of the cross. There are times you must care for yourself just as Jesus pulled himself away from the crowd to care for himself.

        I

  9. 17

    The radiant colors of His {Grace} and Love are evident most in our stories where the canvas is darkest. I am encouraged of this Truth today.

    Praying rich blessings for you, Kristen, as you cling tightly to His Truth…

  10. 18

    My husband has heart issues – afib- and after a year it is finally starting to get under control. He also has severe depression which has led to suicidal thoughts and attempts. He is finally going to a counselor to deal with the issues that are deep inside of him. Please pray for him. Pray for me and my stress to know what is mine to do and what is God’s and my husband’s to do. In the midst of the darkness because I have walked with Jesus during the darkness, I see God’s light moving and making the dark lighter. I see the hope that God has been bringing to the light.

    • 19
      Beth Williams says:

      Praying for peace and rest for you and husband! Asking God for His will and Mercy and grace to surround you both at this time!

  11. 20

    Please pray for my daughter who has a swollen lymph node in her armpit. She is going to see a surgeon on Tuesday.

    • 21

      Praying for you, Kathy, and your daughter. It is the hardest thing in the world, to walk into the unknown with a child, but He will walk with you. May he bless you with comfort and peace tonight, and strength and peace tomorrow.

  12. 22

    You are a light in the dark, Kristen… All through the cracks, and broken places — God so radiant. We love you… and on our knees with you. Praying. Promise.

    Praying this with you from the Puritan Prayer book, “The Valley of Vision”

    “Lord, high and holy, meek and lowly,

    Thou has brought me to the valley of vision,

    where I live in the depths but see thee in the heights;

    hemmed in by mountains of sin I behold

    thy glory.

    Let me learn by paradox

    that the way down is the way up,

    that to be low is to be high,

    that the broken heart is the healed heart,

    that the contrite spirit is the rejoicing spirit,

    that the repenting soul is the victorious soul,

    that to have nothing is to possess all,

    that to bear the cross is to wear the crown,

    that to give is to receive,

    that the valley is the place of vision.

    Lord, in the daytime stars can be seen from deepest wells,

    deepest wells,

    and the deeper the wells the brighter

    thy stars shine;

    Let me find thy light in my darkness,

    Thy life in my death,

    that every good work or thought found in me

    thy joy in my sorrow,

    thy grace in my sin,

    thy riches in my poverty

    thy glory in my valley.”

    In the name of our Lord Jesus…
    Praying (((Kristen)))

    All’s grace,
    Ann

    • 23

      I read this part over and over:

      Let me learn by paradox

      that the way down is the way up,

      that to be low is to be high,

      that the broken heart is the healed heart,

      that the contrite spirit is the rejoicing spirit,

      that the repenting soul is the victorious soul,

      that to have nothing is to possess all,

      that to bear the cross is to wear the crown,

      that to give is to receive,

      that the valley is the place of vision.

      Thanks for sharing this, friend.

    • 24

      I love this prayer. Thanks, sweet friend

  13. 25

    sweet girl… i read this, knowing you wrote it before the kidney trouble hit. like you saw it coming… the need for prayer coming. you have been in my heart and will continue to be. i’m so proud of you and the way you have walked through this… God will use you big, all this is just putting off until the time He needs you there most. I really believe it.

  14. 26

    Praying for YOU, dear woman, and your precious family. May you feel God’s everloving presence as never before.

  15. 27
    Beth Williams says:

    Praying for everyone! May they see/hear God’s perfect will for them and accept it no matter what the cost! Only he knows what is best for each and everyone of us!!

    God bless you all!

  16. 28

    There is so much on my heart. My sister is getting ready to move to find work. Her husband (who is on disability) does not want to go and is willing (at this moment) to sacrifice their relationship of 20+ years over it. Sister is a very private person, so she talks very little about her hurt, but it is there, like another person in the room. Today, a friend called and told me that her mother and her ex-boyfriend had both committed suicide on the last weekend of April (not together, but at the same time). Friend lives several hours away and I had not heard from her so I really didn’t know. She was the one to find her mother’s body and she has been hiding ever since. She cannot get the picture out of her head, so she takes drugs so that she can sleep. I have my own sorrows, but I would rather anyone who is willing to pray for Sister and Friend. They really have sore and burdened hearts.

    • 29
      Aimee R. says:

      Carlolyn: My heart goes out to you my dear one, I am a survivor of Suicide, my brother took his life Christmas Eve of 2004. It was a devastating time for not only me, but my two nephews. My youngest nephew was 13 and has not been the same since. It is very sad. I pray that your friend will find hlp and counseling as you definately need help at this time. I will continue to pray that the Lord help her, give her strength and peace. The Lord is good and will NEVER EVER leave or forsake us. Lifitng prayers up for YOU and your sister also.

  17. 30

    I am definitely feeling that darkness closing in on me. It comes in the form of my job which is at a Christian organization. My boss is not an encouraging person and is at times very discouraging to me and so all the work I do is in fear of what he will say. Unfortunately this job has stripped me of self confidence and joy and it feels like darkness. I throw myself into doing the very best I can at everything I do, trying to please him and always fall short. Always a great reminder that it is not him I am working for, it is God. That perspective helps me a great deal. But I am still struggling.

  18. 31
    Aimee R. says:

    Please pray for pain relief (back pain issues) job issues, not sleeping all night is wearing me down. Am trying to eat and exercise but am hampered by all these
    issues that just make me want to come home after work, go to bed and cry…. I am trusting God and hoping to take my mind off MY circumstances and put all my fear and pain in HIS hands. Thank you ladies for you prayers and faithfulness. I could also use a friend or two… thanks again.

  19. 32

    Kristen,

    Thank you for your offer of prayer. I find that amazing despite facing all that you are, to offer to help others in their time of need.

    I feel overwhelmed. One friend needs help b/c of cancer treatment, another needs help b/c of recent knee surgery, my 3 young children need me (constantly, it seems!), we are moving in 6 weeks and I am trying to pack up our household and get our house ready to rent. I am struggling to hold it together some days. I fight depression and fatigue on an almost daily basis. Fight. Fight. Fight. And sometime I feel too tired to fight and I give in to those feelings of failure, of stress, of not doing or being enough for my kids, for my husband, for my friends. Both my inlaws and my parents have told me in the past week that they are concerned about my fatigue/health and they wish that I would not continue my dream to homeschool, the one that I felt God had placed on my heart. I am heartbroken by this. I want to live in victory in Christ, I want to live for Him alone, I want my kids to know Christ above all else… and yet I feel so far from that most days.

    Thanks for your prayers.

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