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A Prayer for the Troubled Heart
By Debbie McDaniel
This world can be a dark place many days. News reports of shootings, innocent lives being lost too soon, terrorist attacks, unrest, and struggle are constant reminders that we live in uncertain times. Past hurts cling tightly, our present reality filled with pressures, the future may seem to loom with fear.
Many times we wonder, is finding peace in the midst of all this even possible?
Often, living a peace-filled life comes down to a choice. Choosing to come to Him, choosing to set our minds on His Word, choosing to trust Him no matter what, choosing to pray in all that we face, choosing not to be anxious, choosing to believe that He's always with us and in control, choosing to set our thoughts on those things that are true and right.
God reminds us in His word that peace will not naturally just come our way, He tells to “seek peace and pursue it,” Psa 34:14. Some may offer their own advice, “Get away for a few days, relax, be happy, take a vacation, tune out, just don't think about stressful stuff.” But it's only temporary relief in a crazy, struggling world. Vain attempts to cover desperate places of our souls with superficial, external fixes.
But the peace God offers is vastly different. It's lasting. Confident. Real. Breathing deep reassurance in the midst of all that we face – past, present, or future. Rising up against the fear that would seek to choke our lives. Bringing comfort and freedom.
He sent His only Son, pure essence of Peace Himself, to give us lasting freedom and peace that only He can give.
Our world is hurting and broken. We pray for those who have lost loved ones this week, please comfort them in their grief and loss, cover them with your peace and presence, as only your Spirit can do.
We know that in whatever we face, you are our Peace and Refuge, a very present help in times of trouble. Thank you that you remind us throughout your Word, we do not face the storms alone, but you are always with us. Whispering calm. Speaking peace. Bringing rest to our souls.
We confess our need for you. We ask you to forgive us for trying to figure everything out on our own, for not trusting that you are more than able and powerful to work on our behalf. Forgive us for picking back up what we already determined to lay down at your feet. Give us the ability to trust you more, give us a heart that finds rest in your presence, give us the wisdom to seek peace and pursue it, remembering it’s only to be found in you alone.
Thank you that your yoke is easy and your burden is light. Thank you that you care for us. Thank you that the peace of your loving and strong presence guards and protects our hearts and minds in you. Thank you that we do not have to walk in fear or live in overwhelmed cycles of worry and stress.
Thank you for your voice that breaks through the greatest wind and storm swirling around us, and whispers “Peace, be still.”
Thank you that you sent your One and Only Son to set us free.
In the Mighty Name of Jesus,
Editor’s Note: Portions of this devotional come from Debbie McDaniel’s article Finding Peace in a World of Struggle: Prayer for the Troubled Heart. You can read that article in full here.