Category Archives: Prayer

Who’s Fighting for You?

July 3, 2017. It’s a beautiful, sunny day in mid-Missouri, but I woke up today feeling sad and heavy-hearted, a frequent occurrence of late. After a long season of peace, I have found myself being led back down into a darker valley in recent months, a season of more trying times. If you haven’t yet

Abandoned Pets, Lost Lego and the Prospect of Nuclear Annihilation

This past week, our young son showed me once again how very far I have to go in terms of having a vibrant prayer life. He did so, unwittingly, by simply running to prayer himself. In the course of our weeklong family vacation on the coast of Maine, he had two very specific prayers answered…so

A $560 lesson in Prayer

One cold, drizzly autumn night in Chicago, two young 20-somethings made their way to their bi-weekly small group. The day had started over twelve hours earlier. They were tired and running late – never a good combination. They pulled their black Honda Civic up to parallel park on a busy residential city street. The reversing motion began, and suddenly an irreversible, undeniable sound and feeling – side-swiping another car.

Getting Gritty in Prayer: Stories of Answered Prayer

Today’s sermon shared some answered prayers. Such stories help us get gritty for prayer: they tell us about God’s faithfulness in the past and thus encourage us to keep on trusting him in the future. There are all sorts of caveats and nuance to how to understand God answering our prayers. But at the end of the day, God, the Lord over everything, tells us as his children to pray, and he promises that he will hear and answer. So hopefully these stories from all sorts of people (some anonymous, some perhaps identifiable) can encourage you to be gritty in prayer and to be aware of how God has answered prayer in your life.


March 20, 2004. Two weeks before our son was to marry a sweet young woman named Maria, whom we looked forward to adding to our family. We got the call from Maria, ‪at 1:50am that Kyle had been caught up in an avalanche. He had not been found yet. They called off the search ‪until sun up in 5 hours or so. We literally fell to our knees and prayed. Overwhelmed with grief, at the more than real possibility that he did not survive, falling on our knees before our Father was instinctive and the only thing we could do til morning.

A Prayer for Election Day

vote-button-3The Bible encourages us to pray for our elected officials. First Timothy 2:1-2 urges “first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.” Election day seems like a particularly good day for that kind of prayer:

An Appointed Time for Labor, An Appointed Time for Rest

selah an expression occurring frequently in the Psalms, thought to be a liturgical or musical direction…perhaps an indication of a pause. First John 5:14 tells us that there is real power to be unleashed by praying through Scripture, in accordance with God’s will, and my own experiences have ben more than enough to convince me. Sadly, I

Ten Reflections on the Orlando Shooting and a Prayer *

How might we as Christians process and respond to what happened Saturday night in Orlando? These reflections don’t say everything, but hopefully they are a starting point. Evil is real. Evil is deep. Evil is evil. We’re quick to minimize evil or underestimate its reality. Or chalk it up to bad circumstances or a tough

His Word Hidden in My Heart…Alongside my Pride

If you are taking the time to read Every Square Inch, then you are more than likely aware that memorizing God’s Word is essential for those who claim a relationship with Christ. The idea that we should be reading our Bible and memorizing Scripture is not new. While many Christians will approach this as “a

12 Days of Waiting…and Prayer

These past several weeks, I have had a ringside seat to all of the various people, plans and possibilities that have been wrapped up in #ForColumbia2016, the community-wide event scheduled for the evening of April 22nd and all day on Saturday the 23rd. (In case you were as yet unaware, 34 local churches – and

Life Undistracted

“So, yeah, I was thinking maybe we could (BING!) head down to get some frozen (CHIRP!)…umm, yogurt, you know, what’s the name of that (CLINK!)…shop…or whatever…the one we went to when (BONG!)…I forget, but you know we’ve been there before, you and me…” These days, I have become painfully aware of my frequent inability to