I am so afraid to open my clenched fists!
Who will I be when I have nothing left to hold on to?
Who will I be when I stand before you with empty hands?
Please help me to gradually open my hands
and to discover that I am not what I own,
but what you want to give me.” ~Henri Nouwen
So I begin the day as I ended yesterday – in the hope and prayer of hearing Your sweet sweet voice. Lord, speak to me today, guide me today. Allow the words of my mouth and the thoughts in my heart to be in line with Your word, Your love, Your grace.
I think of how easy it is to get caught up in the trappings – a nice home, a good job, even the notion of being “loved by many.” And how honestly, without a heart broken and knit together again in love, none of it matters. I think about the meaning of my own name – “true image” – and my heart aches. Oh Lord, am I at all a true image of you? Do I reflect Your face in my attitude, thoughts, deeds? Or am I no different than a ruler who boasts in his trappings and clenches his possessions and shuns his neighbors and takes advantage of his friends and ignores the plight of the poor? I know that, walking in my own strength, I am undone.
Oh Lord, I praise You for Your amazing glory and grace, that You can take a self-centered life and transform it into a Christ-centered forever. You can create in me a heart that looks like the Father – who pours out love and grace and mercy.
Father God, please correct my vision. Please help me to see Your eternity in light of my frailty. Please use everything You have provided me to Your purpose. Help me to keep my hands open, my heart hungry for ministry. Help me to see that everything – EVERYTHING – is from You and by You and for Your glory.
Home. Husband. Son. Daughter. Family. Friends. Talents. Personality. Ministry. Possessions. Skills. Money. Time. Strengths. Weaknesses.
All for You. All for Your glory. All for Your purpose. All for Your majesty.
“Hands open to give can’t help but receive.” Keeping my hands (and my heart) fully open – it’s a learn and keep learning thing. Maybe you’re learning (again) too. Would you let me pray for you today?
Last year, I shared the stories about pictures I’ve taken. This year during the month of October, I’m opening up my journal and sharing prayers. They’re not eloquent or poetic – they’re simple honest talks with God. Some prayers are joyful and some are screams. Some are said in the morning and some at night. It’s my hope the words might help someone else find the words.