Jesus prayed, “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” — Matthew 6:10 (NIV)
We don’t assign themes to our issues; nor do we have any theme in mind when we select a group of devotionals for publication. We simply look for the stories, perspectives, and insights that we feel will best help readers connect with God and deepen their lives of faith. And yet, without fail, as I read each issue, I find a common thread woven through many of the writers’ stories that points us to a word from God that goes beyond any one devotion. In this issue, that theme is prayerful trust.
Throughout this issue, writers share their experiences of illness, grief, natural disaster, uncertainty, or following a sense of calling. So many of their stories describe prayer as the means by which the writer learns to continually connect to God, to listen for God’s guidance, to depend on the care of people around them, and to find peace in difficult circumstances. Each writer calls out to God, trusting that God will answer.
It is often tempting to think of prayer as transactional: If I faithfully ask for ________, God will give it to me. And though sometimes we do experience a quick and direct answer to prayer, often that is not the case. But praying as Jesus taught us, for God’s will to be done, connects us to God and heightens our awareness of God’s work in our lives. When we are open to receiving a word from God, we are more likely to notice the opportunities and blessings God gives us every day. As you read this issue, I hope and pray that you will find new courage to pray and through prayer to trust that God is at work in your life and in the world.
— Lindsay Gray
“I believe with all my heart that vulnerability and authenticity are the only way to find wholeness in Jesus Christ. … I believe in the holistic, healing love and salvation in Jesus Christ, who walks with us in the valleys and brings beauty from ash heaps again and again and again. I am here to tell you that I have been on the mountaintops and in the valleys, and I have discovered that we need a reset in our souls. We need to share stories so that others will too. When we’re free to be real, that’s when the real joy comes.” Read more.