In our women's group, one of the women shared this profound prayer penned by Thomas Merton. As I immersed myself in its words, I couldn't help but marvel at the deep truths of this seemingly simple prayer. Recognizing its depth, I felt compelled to embark on a journey of contemplation and analysis. Let's break it down...
"My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so."
HA! That is all I can say to the opening part of this prayer. I feel this way almost every day! Somedays, I wonder, "Am I really doing God's will? Or is it my own?" The only thing I can do daily is pray my way through it. Before each interaction, ask that He guide me through it and that I behave in a way that reflects Him. As I know for sure, I have to trust. When I trust His path, it always turns out better than I expected!
"But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road,"
Every morning, as I embark on a new day, I adopt a posture of gratitude. In the ritual of filling out my Five Minute Gratitude Journal, my daily affirmations often echo sentiments such as, "I am a woman of God who wants to do His will." This sets the tone for the day, beginning with a deliberate intention to seek His pleasure in all my actions. My deep desire is to serve others, aiming to embody the qualities that reflect Him as He desires. Admittedly, it's a challenging endeavor as the influences of the world and our own emotions sometimes veer us away from manifesting the likeness of God.
And in closing, "though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone."
This is the hard part. The trials. The tribulations. During these times, it can feel like we are walking a solitary path with seemingly no way out. Yet, it's remarkable how the things that appear insurmountable today often transform into blessings when viewed in retrospect—weeks, months, or years after weathering the storm.
These adversities, though accompanied by hurt and misery, carry invaluable lessons. They become a wellspring of wisdom that we can draw upon to assist others, propel our own growth, and serve as a powerful testimony of how God provides. In navigating through the storms, we not only find solace but also discover a reservoir of strength and resilience that can be a source of inspiration for others and ourselves.
Reflecting on this prayer today, keep in mind: HE WILL PROVIDE. Even when the path seems dark, and you can't see His footprints beside you, trust that He's carrying you to a place that meets all your needs and more. Remember, this world is temporary; our ultimate destination is a Kingdom beyond imagination.
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