A Time to Mourn and a Time to Dance.

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“A time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance…” Ecclesiastes‬ ‭3:4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

As a child, I spent countless hours at our family’s country house, ‘La Morita’. We would travel there every weekend with relatives and friends. The adults would play cards, dominoes or bingo in the evenings after a tasty home-made meal. All of the children would laugh often when sharing stories at the hammocks zone, play Marco Polo at the pool, ride horses in town or hike the mountains at sunrise.

I certainly miss ‘La Morita’. Those memorable times were filled with joy. I don’t remember experiencing any sadness then. Our families were united, loved one another, and were energized by fellowship, outdoor activities and mesmerized by the beauty of nature.

As I grew older, I soon realized life was not ‘picture perfect’. There are moments filled with contentment and other times filled with great distress, anger, emotional pain, grief and/or sorrow.

God promised to be right there with us thru it all – the fun, the boring, the best, the ugly and the worst times.

The Lord is our Refuge. He will never leave us nor forsake us. That is His promise.

When dad passed away, mom relocated back to our home country in South America. Since then, I have only seen her once. We don’t get to walk at the local park nor shop at ‘Sawgrass Mills’ Shopping Center anymore. It has been over two years since I last had a meal with mom at the table. I miss her voice, enthusiasm and most importantly her presence. I wish I could sit with you right now and share the details of my next trip to Florida. The truth is I may never be able to visit mom again and this is a reality I have recently come to terms with. I am in a season of loss, grief and sorrow indeed. It is time to weep, mourn and embrace the loss of mom’s current living situation, geographical distance and deteriorating health conditions.

Are you grieving at this moment, my friend? Are you reminiscing on ‘how’ your past circumstances are quite different than todays? Perhaps, you are facing an ‘unexpected’ loss and you are quite overwhelmed with the intensity and impact of the sudden challenge.

Do not be dismayed or broken-hearted, my friend.

We are in a season of grief but His mercies are new every morning. Today is filled with opportunities for us to briefly reminisce about the past then spend the rest of the time counting our blessings. We have been blessed for all the countless memories and unforgettable moments with our loved ones. They have left their ‘forever’ fingerprints on our minds, hearts and souls. My heart rejoices every time I think of mom.

Let us not dwell on the emotional distress or pain of our recent past. Let us acknowledge our loss, lament and journal our painful thoughts until we are comforted by His promises. Our Lord listens to our melancholic cries and painful thoughts and He comforts our shattered hearts over time.

We will dance once again as soon as our hearts are healed and restored.

Lord, there are so many seasons in our lives and some are difficult to process and get thru. I know we may be in the midst of a tough season. As we lament our losses, we know you are comforting us with your faithfulness, morning mercies and compassion … You hear all of our cries and wipe our tears away. You heal our brokenness and bind our deep wounds. You are our only Hope and Refuge. Turn the gaze of our hearts towards the beauty of all of your promises and fill our hearts with never-ending Hope.

Lord, I’m willing to embrace the new season in life. Spring is here! Flowers are blooming. I want to rejoice once again. Jesus, hold my hand and come with me and waltz together at the dance floor.

In Jesus’ name we boldly pray, Amen.

“You, LORD, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry,” Psalm‬ ‭10:17‬ ‭NIV

“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Psalm‬ ‭147:3‬ ‭NIV

“The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.” Psalm‬ ‭9:9‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“One thing I ask from the LORD, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.” Psalm‬ ‭27:4‬ ‭NIV

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He Directs My Steps.

“You have also given me the shield of Your salvation, Your right hand upholds me, and Your gentleness makes me great. You enlarge my steps under me, and my feet have not slipped. Psalm 18:35-36

“Bless our God, O peoples, and sound His praise abroad who keeps us in life and does not allow our feet to slip.” Psalm 66:8-9

“I have directed you in the way of wisdom. I have led you in upright paths. When you walk, your steps will not be impeded and if you run, you will not stumble.” Proverb 4:11-12

Lord, I appreciate Your gentleness and morning mercies. When I seek wisdom, You direct every step of my goal-planning sessions. I love to plan with You. I know I will not fail if I’m in Your will. I’ve got to admit I tend to be rebellious at times and even prideful so forgive me when I am. I hope the Holy Spirit nudges me immediately so I may repent immediately and ask You to direct my ways. You always want the best for my life, and I appreciate Your divine appointments.

In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

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In The Shadow of His Wings

“Keep me as the apple of the eye. Hide me in the shadow of Your wings” Psalm 17:8“

How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! And the children of men take refuge in the shadow of Your wings.” Psalm 36:7

“Be gracious to me, O God, be gracious to me, for my soul takes refuge in You. And in the shadow of Your wings, I will take refuge until destruction passes by. I will cry to God Most High, to God who accomplishes all things for me.” Psalm 57:1-2

“He will cover you with His pinions, and under His wings, you may seek refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.” Psalm 91:4

Lord be gracious and protect me from all the evil in the world. I take refuge under Your wings now so be my shield and refuge.

I am less anxious when I seek Your comfort and rest. You are so trusting and reliable.

I adore You Abba Father.

I trust you wholeheartedly. In Jesus’ name, I courageously pray.

Amen.

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Seek Him

“I have set the Lord continually before me; Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Therefore, my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices. My flesh also will dwell securely.” Psalm 16:8-9

“When You said, “Seek My face,” my heart said to You, ‘Your face, O Lord, I shall seek.’ Do not hide Your face from me, do not turn Your servant away in anger. You have been my help; Do not abandon me nor forsake me, O God of my salvation!” Psalm 27:8-9

“My heart is steadfast, O God; I will sing, I will sing praises, even with my soul. Awake, harp and lyre; I will awaken the dawn! I will give thanks to You, O Lord, among the peoples, and I will sing praises to You among the nations.” Psalm 108:1-3

Lord, You have been right next to me all along even when I refused to acknowledge Your presence. You were steadfast, faithful and never abandoned me. Because of Your mercies, compassion, and forgiveness, I will never be shaken. You are at my right hand guiding and directing my steps. I will always seek Your face.

You have provided and consoled me in moments of distress. You have been a Rock and Refuge. My heart is no longer anxious, Lord, I know you are already taking care of all the details and have been orchestrating a better future for my family and I. Thank You for your daily portion.

In Jesus’ name, I am singing tunes of joy today. Amen.

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In the Shelter of His wings.

“O Lord, who may abide in Your tent? Who may dwell on Your holy hill? He who walks with integrity, and works righteousness and speaks truth in his heart.” Psalm 15:1-2

“For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle; In the secret place of His tent He will hide me; He will lift me up on a rock. And now my head will be lifted above my enemies around me, and I will offer in His tent sacrifices with shouts of joy. I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord.” Psalm 27:5,6

“Let me dwell in Your tent forever; Let me take refuge in the shelter of Your wings. Selah.” Psalm 61:4

Lord,

Help me maintain good character and integrity in all endeavors.

When trouble arrives, help me discern the best strategy to embrace the challenge and speak Truth to my heart always. You are a Counselor and Refuge at the time of confusion and turmoil.

I will rejoice and sing melodic tunes to the Lord as I embrace today’s troubling circumstances. In Jesus’ name, I boldly and courageously pray. Amen

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A New Song

A New Song

“But I have trusted in Your lovingkindness;

My heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.

I will sing to the Lord because He has dealt bountifully with me.”

Psalm 13:5-6

“Sing to the Lord a new song; Sing to the Lord, all the earth.

Sing to the Lord, bless His name;

Proclaim good tidings of His salvation from day to day.”

Psalm 96:1-2

“Gracious is the Lord, and righteous;

Yes, our God is compassionate. The Lord preserves the simple;

I was brought low, and He saved me. Return to your rest, O my soul,

For the Lord has dealt bountifully with you. You have rescued my soul from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling.

I shall walk before the Lord in the land of the living.”

Psalm 116:5-9

Lord,

I’m so glad I am trusting in You alone.

My heart rejoices when I surrender my plans and seek Your face

for comfort, strength, and wisdom.

I am blessed when I walk in Your presence.

Thank You, Jesus, for Your grace, lovingkindness and unfailing compassion.

You have protected and preserved my life so I may shout to the world a new song.

You rescued me from death and offered me eternal life. How much can I ask?

I am chosen, redeemed and a new creation in Christ.

In Jesus’ name, I boldly and loudly praise His tunes.

Amen.

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My Deliverer.

“Because of the devastation of the afflicted, because of the groaning of the needy, Now I will arise,” says the Lord; “I will set him in the safety for which he longs.” Psalm 12:5

“The Lord also will be a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. And those who know Your name will put their trust in You, for You, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek You.” Psalms 9:9-10

“And my soul shall rejoice in the Lord; It shall exult in His salvation. All my bones will say, “Lord, who is like You, who delivers the afflicted from him who is too strong for him, and the afflicted and the needy from him who robs him?” Psalms 35:9-10

Lord,

I am standing on solid grounds today. I praise You for your guidance, wisdom, discernment, and protection.

You are my stronghold in time of need and in times of trouble. You are my Deliverer.

I am trusting in Your future so calm my anxious heart today. I will rejoice in You alone.

In Jesus’ name, I boldly praise,

Amen.

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His Shelter

“But let all who take refuge in You be glad, let them ever sing for joy. And may You shelter them, that those who love Your name may exult in You.” Psalm 5:11

“Sing for joy in the Lord, O you righteous ones. Praise is becoming to the upright.” Psalm 33:1

“You, O Lord, will keep them. You will preserve him from this generation forever.” Psalm 12:7

Lord,

I praise You today for being my Refuge and a Shelter in moments of distress.

Thank You for your lovingkindness, and protection when I need You the most.

I sing for joy and will always praise about Your faithfulness.

In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

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You Understand

“O Lord, You have heard the desire of the humble;
You will strengthen their heart, You will incline Your ear.

To vindicate the orphan and the oppressed,
So that man who is of the earth will no longer cause terror.” Psalm 10:17-18

“The Lord protects the strangers;
He supports the fatherless and the widow,
But He thwarts the way of the wicked.” Psalm 146:9

“Let not the oppressed return dishonored;
Let the afflicted and needy praise Your name.” Psalm 74:21

Lord,

You are my King who knows and sees what is going on in my life,

You hear all my prayers, strengthen my heart, and refresh my soul.

I am so grateful for Your faithfulness and unfailing protection.

You truly understand my current circumstances.

You watch out for families and their well-being.

You are the Judge who sees the wicked and their evil intents.

I praise You for who You are, Your protection, and justice.

In Jesus’ name, I praise. Amen.

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He Heals Us

“O Lord, do not rebuke me in Your anger,
Nor chasten me in Your wrath.
Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am pining away;
Heal me, O Lord, for my bones are dismayed.” Psalm 6:1-2

“The Lord has disciplined me severely,
But He has not given me over to death.” Psalm 118:18

“Come, let us return to the Lord.
For He has torn us, but He will heal us;
He has wounded us, but He will bandage us.” Hosea 6:1

Lord,

I repent of any unconfessed sin in my heart. Do not rebuke me.

Be merciful and forgiving. Show me Your ways.

I am listening to You and no one else’s opinions. You have my undivided attention, Lord.

You want for me to walk away from unhealthy patterns of living.

Show me how to take better care of my health. You are the best Physician and Counselor.

I want to grow closer to You as I honor Your temple.

In Jesus’ name, I boldly pray. Amen.

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Be Gracious.

“Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness!
You have relieved me in my distress;
Be gracious to me and hear my prayer.” Psalm 4:1

“I was crying to the Lord with my voice,
And He answered me from His holy mountain.” Psalm 3:4

“Turn to me and be gracious to me,
For I am lonely and afflicted.” Psalm 25:16

Lord,

I am moving in a new direction. I am in distress about the unexpected road. Help me trust You.

I’m searching for guidance and I also need Your strength, comfort, and wisdom.

Be gracious and forgive me for all my anxious thought(s) and soothe the rhythms of my heart.

When making a life-altering decision, It is typically a lonely road, yet it is comforting to know You are already there on my behalf.

I may have a plan, Lord, You direct all of my steps though.

Guide me. Teach me. Rebuke me. Be gracious, Lord, and show me every step of the way.

I praise You for opening up a new journey.

I am elated about the unlimited possibilities of the new journey.

In Jesus’ name, I courageously pray and boldly praise.

Amen.

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