Prayer Day 47

 

A Christian Guide to Spirituality: Foundations for Disciples
A Christian Guide to Spirituality: Foundations for Disciples

 

By Stephen W. Hiemstra

Gracious Father,

Rest with us. Grant us the energy to care.

Let us focus a day each week on being your people and modeling your love to those around us.

In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen.

Prayer Day 47

Also see:

Believer’s Prayer

Other ways to engage online:

Author site: http://www.StephenWHiemstra.net

Purchase Book: http://www.T2Pneuma.com

 

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Prayer Day 36

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By Stephen W. Hiemstra

Compassionate Father, beloved Son, ever-present Spirit,

Thank you for giving us healthy boundaries in your law.

Cleanse our hearts of jealousy, envy, and other evil passions that lead us to sin.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Prayer Day 36

Also see:

Believer’s Prayer

Other ways to engage online:

Author site: http://www.StephenWHiemstra.net

Purchase Book: http://www.T2Pneuma.com

 

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Prayer Day 23

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By Stephen W. Hiemstra

Sovereign Father, lover of our souls, compassionate spirit.

Holy, holy, holy is Your name. We praise you for creating us in Your image and loving us intrinsically, just as we are. Grant us the eyes to see others as You see them. Give us ears that hear Your voice above the crowds screaming for our attention. In the precious name of Jesus, Amen.

Prayer Day 23

Also see:

Believer’s Prayer

Other ways to engage online:

Author site: http://www.StephenWHiemstra.net

Purchase Book: http://www.T2Pneuma.com

 
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Prayer Day 19

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By Stephen W. Hiemstra

God of all compassion. We praise you for sharing yourself in the person of Jesus of Nazareth who in life served as a role model for sinners, in death ransomed us from the power of sin, and in resurrection left us with the hope of glory.

Bind our wounds; heal our scars; raise us from death.

Grant us awareness of your presence so that we also can be fully present to those around us.

In the power of your Holy Spirit, make us whole people.

In Jesus’ precious name, Amen.

Prayer Day 19

Also see:

Believer’s Prayer

Other ways to engage online:

Author site: http://www.StephenWHiemstra.net

Purchase Book: http://www.T2Pneuma.com

 

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Prayer Day 17

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Por Stephen W. Hiemstra

Loving Father, Beloved Son, Compassionate Spirit,

We praise you for your example of unity in holiness.

Set us apart in holiness; draw us together.

Encourage us to use our spiritual gifts for the common good and to rejoice when others do too.

In Jesus’ precious name, Amen.

Prayer Day 17

Also see:

Believer’s Prayer

Other ways to engage online:

Author site: http://www.StephenWHiemstra.net

Purchase Book: http://www.T2Pneuma.com

 

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Prayer Day 10

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by Stephen W. Hiemstra

Loving Father, Beloved Son, Holy Spirit.

We praise you for sharing yourself with us in the person of Jesus of Nazareth and stepping into history.

Your silent suffering on the cross shouts your love into our fallen world.

Thank you for modeling a perfect life; bearing our sins on the cross; and granting us resurrection peace.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Prayer Day 10

Also see:

Believer’s Prayer

Other ways to engage online:

Author site: http://www.StephenWHiemstra.net

Purchase Book: http://www.T2Pneuma.com

 

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Mercy: Monday Monologues (podcast) June 8, 2020

Stephen_W_Hiemstra_20200125b
Stephen W. Hiemstra 2020 (Ken Burtram Photography)

 

By Stephen W. Hiemstra

This morning I will share a prayer and reflect on mercy. After listening, please click here to take a brief listener survey (10 questions).

To listen, click on this link.

Hear the words; Walk the steps; Experience the joy!

Mercy: Monday Monologues (podcast) June 8, 2020

Also see:

Monday Monologue On March 26, 2018 

Other ways to engage online:

Author site: http://www.StephenWHiemstra.net,

Publisher site: http://www.T2Pneuma.com.

Newsletter: https://bit.ly/Ready_2020

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Prayer for Compassion and Mercy

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By Stephen W. Hiemstra

God of All Compassion and Mercy,

Forgive me, Lord, for the sins of my youth when I fell short of the plans you had for me. When in your great compassion you were kind to me and patient, teaching me your law and demonstrating your grace.

Forgive me, Lord, for the transgressions of my youth when I disobeyed your law when in your mercy you looked the other way and disregarded my attitude, teaching me forbearance and gentle persuasion.

Forgive me, Lord, for the iniquity of my youth when I failed to help those around me.

When in your everlasting love you sent your son to die for me, atoning for my sin, my transgressions, and my iniquity so that I might grow to be a man mindful of compassion, mercy, and love that were modeled for me all the days of my life.

In Jesus’ precious name, Amen.

Prayer for Compassion and Mercy

Also see:

Believer’s Prayer

Other ways to engage online:

Author site: http://www.StephenWHiemstra.net

Publisher site: http://www.T2Pneuma.com.

Newsletter: https://bit.ly/Ready_2020

 
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Show Mercy, Receive Mercy

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Honored are the merciful, 

for they shall receive mercy. 

(Matt 5:7)

By Stephen W. Hiemstra

Mercy highlights our tension with God because our flesh delights neither in practicing mercy nor in offering it. Rather than practice mercy, we prefer people to keep their promises and pay their bills; rather than ask for mercy, we prefer to pretend that we are sinless. Born in sin, mercy draws attention to our lack of holiness and our finitude, highlighting our tension with God.

Mercy is one of God’s signature character traits  (Wilkins 2004, 208; Guelich 1982, 88). It appears in the Golden Rule, in the Lord’s Prayer, and, most significantly, in a short list of God’s attributes given to Moses immediately after the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai:

The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children’s children, to the third and the fourth generation. (Exod 34:4–7)

The Sinai context here is important because God exposes his character traits to Moses as a set of core values to be used to interpret the law correctly. Experienced lawmakers know that laws taken out of context can be misinterpreted and they frequently publish commentaries to assure proper interpretation. To interpret God’s character correctly, start by recognizing that God is merciful. God demonstrates his mercy in that Jesus willingly died on the cross to save us from our sins—our atonement through Christ confirms his divinity precisely because it exemplifies God’s mercy (1 Cor 15:3).

Mercy appears in many grammatical forms in scripture, but the adverbial form used in the Fifth Beatitude is used nowhere else. This form can be used to declare or be presented as a cause (Wallace 1996, 460–461). Merciful means “being concerned about people in their need, merciful, sympathetic, compassionate” (BDAG 2487) and is derrived from the same root as compassion. Mercy and forgiveness appear as two sides of the same coin (Guelich (1982, 88),  as we read:

Remember your mercy, O LORD, and your steadfast love, for they have been from of old. Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to your steadfast love remember me, for the sake of your goodness, O LORD! (Ps 25:6-7)

The Psalmist talks about mercy, love, and goodness, which together constitute forgiveness.

Jesus repeatedly talks about mercy, as when we read:

1. Go and learn what this means, I desire mercy, and not sacrifice (Hos 6:6). For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners. (Matt 9:13,12: 7).

2. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. (Matt 23:23)

3. And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you? (Matt 18:33)

Jesus clearly values mercy more than legal compliance or punishment. He also talks about mercy using other words or phrases, as in:

1. So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets. (Matt 7:12)

2. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. (Matt 6:12)

In the first example of the Golden Rule, he uses the reciprocal form (do as you would have them do) also used in the Fifth Beatitude (give mercy, receive mercy) suggesting through parallel construction that a parallel concept is also being discussed (France 1985, 110).

The reciprocal form of the Fifth Beatitude makes a convincing case for mercy. Mercy is not earned by being merciful, but mercy suggests God’s presence and we are blessed when we offer it.

REFERENCES

Bauer, Walter (BDAG). 2000. A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature. 3rd ed. ed. de Frederick W. Danker. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. <BibleWorks. v.9.>.

France, R.T. 1985. Matthew. Tyndale New Testament Commentaries. Downers Grove: IVP Academic.

Guelich, Robert. 1982. The Sermon on the Mount: A Foundation for Understanding. Dallas: Word Publishing.

Wilkins, Michael J. 2004. The NIV Application Commentary: Matthew. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

Show Mercy, Receive Merc

Also see:

Preface to a Life in Tension

Other ways to engage online:

Author site: http://www.StephenWHiemstra.net

Publisher site: http://www.T2Pneuma.com

Newsletter: https://bit.ly/Release_2020

 

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23. Prayers of a Life in Tension by Stephen W. Hiemstra

Prayers_of_a_Life_in_Tension_webGod of All Compassion and Mercy,
Forgive me, Lord, for the sins of my youth where I fell short of the plans you had for me. When in your great compassion you were kind to me and patient,teaching me your law and demonstrating your grace. Forgive me, Lord, for the transgressions of my youth when I disobeyed your law when in your mercy you looked the other way and disregarded my attitude, teaching me forbearance and gentle persuasion.
Forgive me, Lord, for the iniquity of my youth when I failed to help those around me. When in your everlasting love you sent your son to die to me, atoning for my sin, my transgressions, and my iniquity so that I might grow to be a man mindful of compassion, mercy, and love that were modeled for me all the days of my life through the power of your Holy Spirit. In Jesus’ precious name, Amen.

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