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January 12, 2023

Standing Strong in a Messy 2023 (Part 2)

In case you missed last week’s post, my son, Mason, a sophomore in college, was given two books* for Christmas.

Sitting at his desk the day after Christmas, I laughed when I saw the message God was giving me when I read the titles of the two books sitting next to each other.

Book #1: Life is Messy

Book #2: Stand Strong

Life is messy. Stand strong. 

We would all agree that life is messy.

But how do we stand strong in the messiness of life?

By trusting our Heavenly Father and relying on the power of the Holy Spirit.

For me to do this, I must start my day with Him.  The older I get, the more I realize how powerless I am to live a Christ-honoring life apart from consistent prayer.  It starts in the morning and goes throughout the day.

Do you ever struggle with WHAT to pray?  I’ve found it helpful to turn Scripture into prayers.  It helps me focus and see more clearly the man God wants me to be.  Last week I shared an example from Ephesians 3:14-21.

Here are a few more.  I encourage you to borrow these or create your own!

Heavenly Father,

I know you desire that I do everything without complaining or arguing, so that I may be blameless and pure, shining like a star among this crooked and depraved generation.  But I tend to complain when life is not going my way.  Forgive me Father.  By the power of your Holy Spirit, help me to trust in your plan and your sovereignty, even in difficult circumstances.  Help me to hold firmly to your Word.  Do not let me labor in vain, gracious God (Philippians 2:14-16).


Heavenly Father,

May everything I do show that I am a true minister of your Gospel.  This means I must patiently endure troubles, hardships and calamities of every kind. I need your help to do this, Father.  I know that your disciples were beaten, imprisoned, faced angry mobs, worked to exhaustion, endured sleepless nights, and went without food.  My challenges pale in comparison, yet I ask that you will help me patiently endure the hardships of this day with grace and humility, through the power of your Spirit (2 Corinthians 6:4-5).


Heavenly Father,

I pray that my soul will find rest in you today.  You are my rock, my salvation, and my fortress.  I will not be shaken as long as I trust in you.  My honor depends on you.  Help me to trust in you at all times.  Thank you for being my refuge (Psalm 62:5-8)!


*Life is Messy is by Matthew Kelly, and Stand Strong is a men’s devotional created by Our Daily Bread.




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