Praying Galatians 5:22-23
Before we get into our prayer today, I wanted to let you know some exciting news. My book, Yes, Father: A Daughter’s Journey to Forgiveness will be on sale on Amazon through December so that you get the best option while Christmas shopping. I pray you will consider what caregivers or friends you can gift this book to. Please don’t hesitate to go to my website www.ja-sellers.com while doing your online shopping and let me know if you decide to buy and who you bought it for. I would love to pray for them. That’s a great way to find out more about the book and who it’s for.
And don’t forget while you’re getting the book for someone else, to leave a review. That way more people can find the story that I hope was a blessing to you. Now, on to our prayer.
Today’s verse is Galatians 5:22-23.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Let’s pray together.
Holy Spirit, today help me to thoughtfully and prayerfully consider how to live under Your law and how You can produce fruit within me to share with the world.
LORD, what is it that keeps me from loving others? I have such a love for myself and it is a blockade. It’s mixed with such squirming feelings of doubt and insecurity and fear, but it all points back to self-protection, the need for myself to thrive. But I want my love for others to be consistent and I want it to play out in practical ways in my life. So help me to understand love and how You view it and how viewing You keeps You in the central place of my life. And then, only then, will I love others, because I love You first. Guide me on this path.
Father, how can I have joy in my life? How can I share that with others? Perhaps the reason is that I do not practice gratitude, I am not thankful for what I already have. I focus again on myself, on what I think I need. It’s so hard to be joyful when I want to complain. But, God, You are sovereign and full of grace. You know what I need so much better than I do. Help me remember that and be full of thanksgiving. And with that thanksgiving, grant me joy. And help me grant that joy to others.
Jesus, Prince of Peace, how do I emulate that in my life? Why is there so much conflict, resonating within and without me? I would rather strike out than risk others hurting me. Everyone is in my way, wanting things for themselves, pushing their own agenda. That’s what I think on a daily basis. But I pray that I live for You and not for me. I pray that I stop making everything so personal and focusing on assumptions. Help me overlook the slights that offend so deeply, offering that clemency to all around me.
Holy Spirit, where is my patience? Where is the slow, careful waiting that would serve me well? I live in an immediate culture, a think-fast society, a quick-service mentality. But perhaps it’s because I want to be in charge that I lack patience. I want what I want now. It offends me to think I have to wait for someone else’s schedule. But, God, what is Your agenda? What have I been putting aside that I need to focus on? If I can shift my eyes to You, perhaps I will be willing to wait because I will understand what is most important. And then be gracious to those around me.
God, why am I not kind and good? Where is the ability to offer You to the world? To live a pattern that showcases these elements? Why am I so invested in what I think I want? Perhaps I think that if I am kind and good, I will get pushed over and stepped on. I think others will take advantage of me. Or maybe I think of these things as step-stools to get what I want. Oh, God, take such thoughts from me. Remind me that who I am is a witness for You. I am sanctified daily, all of my rough edges being removed by You. That is my purpose, not to get what I think I want. And when I am surrendered to Your will, I don’t worry so much about how others will react. Help me to show them a better way.
Oh, Spirit, why am I not faithful to You? Why do I wake up each morning, full of Your new mercies, and squander them on going my own way? Why do I insist that I must be faithful to myself? It’s because I lack understanding of how faithful You are. I do not see how consistent You are. I am trying to get where I want to go by the fastest route. And in so doing, I miss the discipline, the routine, the steadfastness You exemplify. You are never swayed by the newest and greatest and most convenient thing. You know what is good and You stick with it. Teach this to me. Teach me how to be faithful to You.
Jesus, I can be so rough. I can snap and bite and claw my way through the world. Because I am fearful. I believe I will be last. I believe I will be hurt. I believe no one will really love me. So I hide behind a bristling wall of isolation and I refuse to be vulnerable. But that is not who You are. You are gentle and lowly in heart. You never shrink from the truth, but You speak it in love. You give and You listen and You offer sweetness and mercy. Oh, may it be so for me. May I think before I speak. And may You take away my fear so that I am humble before You and before others. May I always be a safe place because You are my safe place.
LORD, I cannot control myself. I live in the moment, focusing on pleasure, focusing on desire, focusing on need. I want that cake. I want that parking space. I want to sleep in. I want, I want, I want. It’s so much more than that. It’s a desire for control, for independence, for ease and comfort, for gratification. But I need to walk the long, slow path, the one where I learn all the other things I am praying for. I learn Your truths and I am willing to accept the good gifts, not because I took them or earned them, but because You gave them to me. Help me not to abuse them. This world is Your pleasurable paradise, but it is not my home. Help me to focus on You and where You want me to be, and not on this moment, lusting for only my wants to be fulfilled.
Holy Spirit, may I be a tree planted in good soil, by deep waters. May I rejoice and revel in the fact that all of these things are freely available to me. No one would say that I shouldn’t yearn for them. No one can say that I can’t strive for them. Yet may it always be clear to me that You are the giver, working through me. It is always You. Produce in me, the fruit of Your word.
I pray this in Jesus’ powerful and creative name. Amen.