Prayers of Psalmody in Depression

With my voice I cry out to the Lord;
with my voice I plead for mercy to the Lord.
I pour out my complaint before Him;
I tell my trouble before Him.
When my spirit faints within me,
You know my way!
Psalm 142:1-3 (ESV)

Depression. Sometimes we can be so overwhelmed with the discouragements of life that we use this word to describe our outlook. Sometimes we are so sad and grieved by circumstances that we apply this label to ourselves and our feelings and our emotions. And sometimes there are those of us who suffer clinical depression, where it is an uncontrolled chemical imbalance in our brains and bodies that weighs us down regardless of circumstances or happy blessings. Sometimes these “types” or “definitions” of depression even overlap and collide and combine with one another. I have personally experienced each of these three broad categories of depression that I have just briefly described for you—each one is extremely painful, and can be absolutely suffocating. I have been so depressed at times that I could not get out of bed, could not stop crying, could not face seeing any people, could not cope, could not recognize joys, could not even pray outside of basic juvenile attempts to simply cry help, God!

So today I am kneeling in the quiet of my own room, asking for my Father to hear the cries—no matter how muffled, how simple, how tear-choked, how even unspoken—of my sisters who are struggling with depression, anywhere along the spectrum of this particular suffering. Especially because in the Christian realm, there is a stigma about depression that makes it almost impossible to talk about with any sort of honesty or vulnerable integrity. My heart aches for you, and my hands are lifted up to our Father, and you are represented on my palms before His throne. Come with me now, and let us pray together.


O Father, You are in heaven, high and lifted up. You are holy and all-powerful, yet I confidently come to You with these open hands, lifting broken and downtrodden hearts to you. You know the needs before I utter them, You discern the pains of these suffering saints far more intimately than I can begin to understand. So through Your Holy Spirit and by the intercession of Christ my High Priest, would You please accept these prayers and bend low to lift up these faces, lighten these paths, and restore the souls here who are in desperate need of Your encouragement? Lord, hear my prayers.

You go before us and You are with us; please help us to know that You will not leave or forsake us, regardless of the inner turmoil we may fight. Please grant us Your grace so that we do not fear, and keep us from dismay. (Deuteronomy 31:8) The anxiety in our hearts weigh us down and build heavy walls of depression within us, but good words gladden us (Proverbs 12:25), so please Father, surround us with words to restore joy to our hearts, and specifically use Your Word and words from Your people to encourage us with wisdom and truth.

Father, depression is a stormy sea—O, Father, You know!—so please send from Your high place, and snatch us out, drawing us out of these waters. Rescue us from the strong enemy of depression, it is too mighty for us on our own. Depression is a continual confrontation for some of us, and Lord, it brings so many calamities. Lord, be our support! Bring us out into a broad place by Your hand of rescue. Show us Your delight in us! You show us Your mercy and fill us with the righteousness of Christ because we are His—so cleanse our hands and grant us rewards from Your grace. Even in depression, Lord, we do not depart from You. We keep Your ways, we fall at Your feet. (2 Samuel 22:17-22) Enable us to serve You in new ways, even while we are in the darkness and ride on the stormy seas. Remind us that You are our Savior. Remind us that You are our support. Remind us that depression itself can never separate us from You. Make us conquerors by Your love, even as You remind us of Your surety and continual companionship—that in addition to what Paul lists for us, no more can anxiety or depression or doubt separate us from Your love when we are in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:37-39)

When we languish, be gracious—when we are troubled all the way through our bones, heal us—oh! Lord, how long will You allow this great trouble of soul to persist? (Psalm 6:2-3) Lighten this darkness! You are our lamp, O Lord, so disperse the dark veil of depression in front of us! (2 Samuel 22:29) In this oppression, in this trouble—Lord, be Thou our one and only faithful stronghold. (Psalm 9:9)

Even now as we cry aloud to You, we are confident that You hear us. Yet why do our souls refuse to be comforted?! In this trouble, we seek You, Lord, and we stretch our hands to You, remembering You and calling to You and meditating on Your Word. I moan! My spirit faints! The trouble can be so overwhelming—the depression so thick that our words will not come, even speaking feels too hard—You alone can keep our eyelids open when they just want to shut tight and let the darkness of this suffering suffocate and drown us. (Psalm 77:1-4) We know You are near. We know You save. We know You deliver. O Lord, fix these broken hearts, heal these crushed spirits, relieve these afflicted ones who wear Christ’s righteousness. (Psalm 34:18-19) You see this affliction, and You know this distress (Psalm 31:7), so be the shield we need to fight the strong enemy of depression and be our glory as the One who lifts up our heads! (Psalm 3:3) You can make our steps firm and grant us renewed delight in You! We might be stumbling around in this darkness, but O Lord, when You uphold us with Your hand, we can not fall! (Psalm 37:23-24)

So why are we downcast? Why are our souls tumultuous? Where is our hope? Where is our praise? Where is our salvation? God, where are You?! (Psalm 43:5) Even in the midst of depression’s darkness, our only hope is from You—for You, O God, help our souls to wait in silence. (Psalm 62:5) Be gracious to us, O Lord, for we are in distress (Psalm 31:9), and by Your Spirit, please help us in this weakness. Sometimes in our depression, we can hardly lift our hands our coin our words—the darkness and the anxiety and the walking round in circles just causes our bodies and minds to nearly shut down—so when we do not know how or for what we ought to pray, please by Your Spirit intercede for us through wordless groans. (Romans 8:26)

Our spirits faint inside of us as they are pressed on every side by depression; our hearts are appalled at the dark abyss they feel inside. And so we stretch out our hands to You; our souls thirst for You like a parched land. Preserve our lives—body, mind, soul, spirit, strength—for the sake of Your name, O Lord! In Your righteousness bring our souls out of this trouble! (Psalm 143:4, 6, 11) Please, O Lord, do not hide Your face from us—You have told us to seek Your face, so please hear us now as our hearts cry out! Lord, we do seek Your face! (Psalm 27:8-9) And so, Father, here we are—we will look to You, Lord. Pull back the blinders of depression and lift the veil of darkness all around. We will wait for the God of our salvation. You are our God, and You will hear us! Oh, enemy of depression that brings me sinking low, by the power of God, I will not let you rejoice over me. When I fall, I shall rise—yes, Lord! When I sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to me—and amen! (Micah 7:7-8)

We call to You, O God of our righteousness—please answer. Give us relief from our distress, by Your grace, and hear our prayer. Please grant us peace so that we can rest—body and soul—because You are the only One, our Lord, who can fill us with the respite of safe haven. (Psalm 4:1, 8) You are our God, and so we continue to seek You earnestly. We thirst for You! We faint for You! In this dry and weary land of depression where we have no sustenance of food or water but for Your sustaining grace, lift us up and fill us, heal us and give us hope. We will bless You for as long as we live, and in Your name we lift up our hands, carrying our burdens and our depression and our suffering sisters in our prayers before You. (Psalm 4:1, 4)

Thank You for hearing the cries of our souls. Please send Your mercy into this darkness, and be our great Light. Amen.

Prayers of Psalmody ~ in Suffering

Prayers of Psalmody ~ in Suffering
… … … … …

As for me, I am poor and needy,
but the Lord takes thought for me.
You are my help and my deliverer;
do not delay, O my God!
Psalm 40:17

… … … … …

Suffering. Oh Lord, You know true suffering! Lord, would You please bend low to us as we come on our knees with uplifted hands today? With our tears, our anxieties, our pains, our needs—please, Jesus, intercede for us—please, Holy Spirit, translate our groanings—please, Father, in Your mercy accept our prayers as holy incense in Your presence.

In my poor neediness, O God, I beg you to hasten to me. You are my help! You are my deliverer! Do not delay, O Lord! (Psalm 70:5) My needs and my low estate have caused my heart to be stricken within me (Psalm 109:22), and I suffer distress and anguish. Sometimes I feel like death warmed over, I feel like I might slip into Sheol itself. (Psalm 116:3) O God of all creation, the young lions may suffer want and hunger, but I truly believe with Your psalmist that those who seek the Lord will lack no good thing. (Psalm 34:10) I come to you asking for goodness, for my daily bread, for a respite in the midst of this suffering, for comfort when my heart is in in anguish within me (Psalm 55:4). Be near to me even now in the midst of this suffering, Lord my God, for although trouble and anguish are my companions, it is Your commandments that are my delight (Psalm 119:43). Raise me from the dust, lift me from the ash heap—the pillars of the earth are Yours, my Lord, and on them You indeed have set the world (1 Samuel 2:8)—all things are under Your feet, submitting to Your command. Because of Your power and sovereignty, I know that the needy shall not always be forgotten—no, Lord, not even I!!—and the hope of the poor shall not perish forever (Psalm 9:18), for You are merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in mercy (Psalm 103:8). I am falling, Lord—uphold me! I am bowed down—raise me up! I look to You—give me food in due season! You know my desires, O God—open Your hand to bring satisfaction according to Your grace. (Psalm 145:14-16)

God, You are my God—there is none but You. I seek You earnestly, I thirst for You, I faint for You. I have looked upon Your power, Your glory, Your sanctuary—because I long truly for You like one suffering in a desert wilderness. Even so, my God, it is Your steadfast love that is better than life itself. Oh, I praise You! I praise You with my lips, as I long for the satisfaction of your presence. I will never stop praising You, blessing You, lifting up my hands to the heavens in Your name. When I remember You and all Your marvelous deeds, it satisfies my soul! I am satisfied like a king at a banquet with the fat and rich foods of feasts. Even when I lie on my bed, and when I lie awake at all hours of the night, I remember You and I praise You joyfully—because You indeed have been my help! In my meditations I sing for joy because I rest in the shadow of Your wings. Your right hand holds me up, and my soul clings to You. Sometimes I feel my life on the brink of being destroyed—Lord, the evil and invisible prowlers against my soul will go down into the depths of the earth, and I know You will conquer all my suffering and its causes through the sword and through the devouring of jackals. The mouths of liars will be stopped. I will forever rejoice in God! You will exult me in the end, my God, because I swear by You alone. (Psalm 63) You are the God and King of my life, and I seek to praise You right through my suffering. Give me bigger faith to see You through my pains and trials, to be faithful to You even when I can not see the end from the beginning—and the days can feel oh so long.

I dwell in Your shelter, O God Most High, and I abide in Your shadow, Almighty God. You are my refuge and my fortress! You are my God, and I trust You. I know You will deliver me, even when I feel the suffocation of deadly pestilence. I know You cover me with Your pinions, and I find refuge under Your wings, even in my anguish. You are faithful!! Your faithfulness is a shield to protect me and a buckler to equip me. Nights can be terrible, but Your presence allows me not to fear—days can bring unpredictable battles, but I don’t fear the arrows because You fight for me. Neither darkness or daylight will overcome me, with their pestilence or destruction—because You are for me, and I rest in Your protection. You are my guide, so while thousands fall at Your side and ten thousand at Your right hand, no evil can come near You. Your eyes will look and see the recompense of the wicked. You are my dwelling place, O Lord! You are my refuge, O Most High! Keep evil from me! Protect me from plagues! Command Your angels over me—have them guard me everywhere and at all times, so they can bear me up on their hands if I stumble. Cause me to overcome my foes and to rise up victorious in my battles. Allow me, my God and King, to hold fast to You in love. Deliver me and protect me. Answer me when I call to You, be with me now in my troubles. Please honor me—I know Your name!—and rescue me. O my God, show me Your salvation! Satisfy me with true life! (Psalm 91) Give me eyes to see and ears to hear and a heart that lives by faith alone—remind me through my suffering and despite my suffering that I am in Your shadow, under Your wings, and dwell in Your shelter.

You are my Lord, and You are near to all who call upon You—in truth, O Lord, I call on You now. Fulfill the desire of my heart and hear my cry—save me, God! I fear You and I love You, and I trust You to preserve me because of Your great goodness. (Psalm 145:18-20)

Grow my faith as I suffer, and deliver me according to Your will.
May all power and glory and dominion forever be Yours, from this time forth.
May my lips never cease to proclaim Your faithfulness and Your mercy.

In the name of Jesus, who carries my prayers to the Father, by the power of the Holy Spirit who dwells in my soul—amen.

~part of our series, Serving Those in The Church with Chronic Needs~

Prayers of Psalmody, for those in Physical Pain

I am afflicted and in pain;
let Your salvation, O God, set me on high!
I will praise the name of God with a song;
I will magnify Him with thanksgiving.
Psalm 69:29-30 (ESV)

Physical pain, whether acute or chronic, can bring us both actually and figuratively to our knees. Would you please bow your heads with me today, as we fall on our knees and rest weary aching heads in feeble hands—our God is our Strength and our Deliverer, and He hears us when we call to Him through Christ our Advocate and the interceding groans of the Holy Spirit. Whether it is your pain, or the pain of someone you know (or both!), please bring these burdens to the Father’s Throne with me now—He will accept our offering, hear our prayers, and answer according to His will. Come with me in faith.


Jehovah Rapha, the Lord who heals, we come asking You humbly to hear our prayer in Your great mercy—please hear our cries for endurance and sustenance for as long as this pain lasts, and hear our cries for relief and deliverance—grant us, ultimately, peace through Christ with whatever Your will for our lives and our bodies and our pains may be, and take delight in satisfying and replenishing our souls (Jeremiah 31:25). Give us eyes to see what Your will is, and give us Your grace to accept what Your hands lay upon our shoulders.

Lord, help us to feel Your hand of peace and strength when we are in pain. Enfold us with Your strong comfort. Enable us to see and somehow embrace that in our suffering, we become closer to You and more like Christ (1 Peter 4:13). Help us to bless You, to remember Your kindness, to praise You for Your forgiveness and healing (Psalm 103:2-3), and the various ways You present these things to us Your children.

Please grant us the humility of spirit to accept this painful thorn as a gift from your hand (2 Corinthians 12:7), Father. Make us boast in Your strength when we are weak (2 Corinthians 12:9), and help us never give in to the temptation of self pity and wallowing but gird our loins for the battle You have chosen for us (Isaiah 40:29). Renew our hope in Your future promises, allow our eyes to focus on the glorious gift of new bodies in heaven (Philippians 3:20-21) where our tears will be wiped away and our pain will be no more (Revelation 21:4). Pain can be so isolating—and genuinely can isolate us if we are bed ridden or house ridden due to physical pain—especially when it never seems to go away, so Father, please help us to remember that we are not alone—not only are You always with us, but others of Your people around the world and throughout time have and do also suffer in similar ways (2 Timothy 2:3). Make us firm in our faith through this trial, and in Your timing, please restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish us (1 Peter 5:9-10) for the sake of Your glory, and even for the glory that You promise to share with Your people when the sufferings of this time are past (Romans 8:18). Lord, give us rest from this pain and turmoil, relief from this hard service You have called us to serve—give us voices to proclaim Your Gospel and Your Kingdom, to share Your providence and provision and healing hand (Isaiah 14:3).

Because we know that Jesus did not turn away those who suffered from various pains and afflictions (Matthew 4:24), we come with boldness asking for His hands of healing to remove this pain. Please cleanse our bodies of the physical ailments that deter us from further engaging in life and joyful participation in the lives around us (2 Corinthians 7:1). Oh Lord, our prayer is simple and our words are few—please grant healing, please take away this pain, please restore physical strength and health—please give glory to Yourself through this act of mercy. Grant us peace in this world of turmoil, for we are confident in our faith that You have overcome the world (John 16:33).

Lord, You know—You know!!—the suffering, the pain. Remember us, visit us, take vengeance on behalf of us for the sake of this pain (Jeremiah 15:15). God, please hear the depth of anguish as we cry to You—why is this pain unceasing, this wound incurable, why does this body refuse healing? (Jeremiah 15:18) We fall and flounder and falter, for this pain is ever before us (Psalm 38:17), in this affliction and pain, O God, we beg You to save us and set us on high (Psalm 69:29). Do not forsake us, Lord, but be near to us right in the midst of the suffering. Make haste to help us, for You, O Lord, are our salvation (Psalm 38:21-22). Father, even when we speak or when we pray or when we seek relief, it feels like our pain is never assuaged, and when we seek to be strong with endurance and forbearance for Your sake, the pain doesn’t lessen. It wears us out, Father, shrivels us up, and our bodies themselves rise up against us (Job 16:6-8). Our souls are poured out, for the days of affliction take hold of us—even in the night, our bones ache, and there is no relief from the agony because the gnawing pain never takes rest (Job 30:16-17).

Jehovah Shalom, Lord our Peace, You alone can give rest to our souls whether our bodies continue in this dire pain or whether You lift this physical burden from us (Matthew 11:28). Your Son, our Lord Jesus, is the only One who can give us peace which passes our understanding, so we ask You in Your grace to fill us with His peace and guard our hearts and minds during this season of life (Philippians 4:7). God, we are so tempted toward cynicism when the suffering is long and unrelenting—like Job, we can beg that You would simply crush us and completely cut us off. We can think that this would be a comfort, that it would glorify You. But Lord, give us the grace to follow in Job’s footsteps so that we exult even in the midst of unsparing pain, allowing us never to deny the words of You, our Holy One. We do not have strength and we do not know our end, so please give us faith to wait on You and to be patient as we call upon Your mercy. We are not made with the strength of stones or bronze, and You—our Creator—look upon us with understanding. (Job 6:8-12)

Father, You made us of dust and You filled us with Your own breath (Genesis 2:7), so we call upon You to remember our frame (Psalm 103:14). Please forgive our iniquities and take away our physical ailments, redeem us and crown us, satisfy us and renew us, O God we pray! Please show Your compassion to us (Psalm 103:3-5, 13). As we are bodies paired with souls, according to Your infinite wisdom, please care for our spirits as well as our physical temples—as Jesus went about proclaiming the Gospel and healing physical needs, please have mercy upon each part of our being (Luke 9:6, 11). Please heal our bodies and take away our pain—please strengthen our faith and increase our imaging of Christ for the sake of Your glory, for the furtherance of Your Kingdom.

And as we recognize our frailty in every way, please send Your Spirit to intercede on our behalf. Even our prayers are not brought to You on our own strength, Lord. We do not know how to pray, nor for what we ought to even ask, but we trust You and we rely on You—please, send Your Spirit to intercede for us, because we belong to Jesus, and hear His groans on our behalf. We know that You search our hearts, and we call upon You to hear the intercession of Your Spirit for us, according to Your will (Romans 8:26-27).

In our frailty, in our humanity, in our pain, in our suffering—O Lord, hear our prayer. Give strength to us, Your people and grant us Your peace (Psalm 29:11). For the sake of Christ in whose name we pray—trusting that He indeed is the Risen King who conquered death and sin so that we can look ahead toward perfect bodies and resurrected new life in the future Kingdom—amen.

Prayers of Psalmody, for One Anothering

…as for me, my prayer is to You, O Lord.
At an acceptable time, O God,
in the abundance of Your steadfast love
answer me in Your saving faithfulness.
Psalm 69:13

O Lord—my God, my Father, my King—God, Father, and King of us all. Please bend low to hear my prayer now, as I fall at Your feet. I come to You, asking You to show me how to love and serve and live by the light of Your grace in Your body, the Body of Christ. As I am faced daily with others—others who love You, serve You, belong to You—would you please teach me, show me, and enable me so that I can pour forth the heart of Christ into the hearts of His people.
My prayer is to You, O Lord, and I ask You to answer me in Your saving faithfulness because Your steadfast love is abundant.

Please, Father from whom all love flows in truthful abundance, enable me to love others, not by my own strength and might but by Your indwelling of the Spirit in my soul, pour Yourself out by Your loving grace through my thoughts, words, prayers, deeds, actions, and inactions.

John 13:34, John 13:35, John 15:12, John 15:17, Romans 12:10, Romans 13:8, Galatians 5:14, Ephesians 4:2, 1 Corinthians 16:14, 1 Thessalonians 3:12, 1 Thessalonians 4:9, 2 Thessalonians 1:3, 1 Peter 1:22, 1 Peter 3:8, 1 Peter 4:8, 1 John 3:11, 1 John 3:23, 1 John 4:7, 1 John 4:11, 1 John 4:12, 2 John 5

Please, Father from whom there is no shadow or variation, enable me to show sacrificial kindness to others, not with words or speech only but with actions and truth.

Ephesians 4:32, 1 Thessalonians 5:15

Please, Father who is the one and only God of truth, enable me to curb flattery and lies, rather to act and speak according to the truth in love which You desire Your people to pour out upon one another and upon the world around us.

Lev 19:11, Zechariah 8:16, Malachi 3:16, Ephesians 4:25, Colossians 3:9, James 4:11

Please, Father who teaches and instructs and bestows honor perfectly, enable me to honor all those You put around me, above me, and under me, in accordance with Your will.

Romans 12:10, Ephesians 5:21, Philippians 2:3-5, 1 Peter 5:5

Please, Father who rights all wrongs and redeems all the brokenness of the world through Christ’s work and sacrifice, enable me to abstain from wronging others but rather to seek their good and to sacrifice myself for their blessing.

Lev 19:11, Lev 25:14, Lev 25:17, Zechariah 8:17, Galatians 5:15, Galatians 5:26, James 4:11

Please, Father who dwells with the Son and Spirit, who perfectly bear our burdens and strengthen us for their weight, enable me to give of my soul and my strength to bear the burdens of others through prayer and action and true sacrifice.

Romans 12:15, Romans 15:1, Galatians 6:2, Ephesians 4:2, Colossians 3:13

Please, Father of the Lord Jesus Christ who wept with His beloved friends over the death of their brother, who knows what it is to look upon pain and suffering, enable me to cry, mourn, grieve, and sit quietly with those around me who are weighed down by the sorrows of this life.

1 Sam 20:41, Romans 12:15, 2 Corinthians 13:11

Please, Father who gives us both holy Scripture and Holy Spirit to be our encouragement, who places us in the Body of Christ for mutual support and stimulation in the faith, enable me to be an encouragement to others so that their countenances will be lifted and You will be glorified.

Proverbs 27:17, Romans 1:12, Romans 14:19, 1 Thessalonians 4:18, 1 Thessalonians 5:11, Hebrews 10:24, Hebrews 10:25

Please, Father of Paul the Apostle who specifically sought to exhort Your people, You who use the sword of Your Spirit to cut and hone our souls for Your purpose and Your Kingdom, enable me to rightly divide Your Word so that the words I speak and the prayers I pray would be an exhortation toward righteousness in Christ.

Proverbs 27:17, Romans 15:14, Colossians 3:16, Hebrews 3:13, Hebrews 10:24

Please, Father of us all who welcomes us with grace and mercy, compassion and the shelter of Your protection, enable me to greet and welcome and embrace all who You put in my path, to the glory of Your name.

Romans 16:16, 1 Corinthians 16:20, 2 Corinthians 13:12, 1 Peter 5:14

Please, Father in the Trinity, who shares continual fellowship with the Son and the Spirit, enable me to imitate Your love and grace-filled fellowship so that I will build up the saints around me, and will be likewise built up by them, as we find opportunity to spur one another on to love and good works in the power of Your indwelling of us.

1 Peter 4:9, 1 Peter 5:14, 1 John 1:7

Please, Father who opens Your heavenly home to redeemed sinners, whose Son welcomed the poor and the marginalized, You who exemplify for Your people what it is to meet the needs of others, to pour ourselves out for the blessing of one another, to share our home and our possessions with people of all status and station, enable me to be hospitable with my words, my hands, my skills, and my home.

Romans 12:13, Romans 15:7, 1 Peter 4:9

Please, Father for whom my soul longs and my spirit waits all the day, You who deign to patiently bear with my own weaknesses and frailties and stumblings, enable me to wait for others around me, so that I do not rush ahead in selfish greed, but rather come alongside others in the patient grace that You daily pour out upon me.

1 Corinthians 11:33

Please, Father who is the God of peace, from whom flows all harmony and forgiveness, enable me to live at peace with all mankind, so that as far as I am able, Your peace and forgiveness dwells in me and flows through me to the point where I feel no animosity or jealousy, bitterness or unrest, and insomuch as I have influence, enable me to spread Your peace to others.

Psalm 133:1, Mark 9:50, Romans 12:16, Romans 14:13, Romans 14:19, Romans 15:5, Galatians 5:15, 1 Corinthians 1:10, 2 Corinthians 13:11, 1 Thessalonians 5:13, 1 Thessalonians 5:15, James 4:11, James 5:9

Please, Father who delights over me with singing, enable me to sing not only to You in praise but to others for the sake of Your glory, for Your delight, for the proclaiming of Your sovereign goodness.

1 Sam 18:7, Ephesians 5:19, Colossians 3:16

Please, Father of all creation who loves to give good gifts to Your sons and daughters, enable me to use my talents and my resources to give to others, not selfishly but sacrificially and from the heart.

Esther 9:19, Esther 9:22, Luke 3:11, 1 Peter 4:10

Please, Father whom we serve and whose Son taught us by example how to serve others as He gave His life a ransom for many, enable me to use the strength and skills and resources that You have provided me to serve others, as a good steward of Your grace.

Mark 10:45, Luke 3:11, John 13:14, Romans 12:13, Galatians 5:13, Philippians 2:5-7, 2 Corinthians 4:5, 1 Peter 4:10

Please, Father of forgiveness, abundant in grace and mercy, enable me to be humble in spirit so that I will not hide my sins or dwell in iniquity, but rather enable me to humbly confess my sins to those against whom I have committed wrongs, and enable me to gladly and unabashedly forgive those who likewise seek my forgiveness.

James 5:16, 2 Corinthians 13:11, Ephesians 4:32, Colossians 3:13, 1 Peter 4:8

Please, Father who hears our prayers and sees in secret, enable me to pray in private and in public as You give opportunity, so that I can pray both for and with those around me, to bring petitions and praises to You not only on behalf of myself but for the people You put into my life with their varied lives of joy and suffering, anxieties and sins, praises and gifts.

Matthew 18:20, Acts 12:5, Romans 15:30, James 5:16

Our Father in heaven, who bends low to His children when we fall at Your feet, please hear the cries of Your child as I ask You to enable me to be a conduit of Christian grace to others, by the power of Your Spirit. Abba, Abba, Abba! Grant that I may glorify You in my interactions with those around me, so that Your glory will be magnified and Your Kingdom will be furthered on earth, where I await Your Son’s coming again where all will be made new, and Your people will see You—side by side—face to face.
For the sake of Your glory, Your power, Your Kingdom, Your honor, and Your Son~ amen.

Prayers of Psalmody, Praying for Love

Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us,
even as we hope in you.
Psalm 33:22 (ESV)

Have you noticed yet, sisters, that I use the word “psalmody” rather loosely? My edges are blurry, flowing like watercolors when I paint with such a broad brush with that word. When I use the Scriptures to largely & distinctly shape my prayers, as I have recently been sharing with you (and have plans to continue, as the Lord leads), I do not restrict myself to the book of Psalms, yet I still apply the title “prayers of psalmody” to them. Has this bothered you? Well, let me explain just briefly. What is a psalm? According to various dictionaries I glanced through, a psalm is a sacred song of worship, and of course specifically the ones contained in Scripture’s book of Psalms—which is not only the songbook of Scripture but also a prayerbook. But I think we can apply so much of those same broad strokes to other parts of Scripture by using them also as sacred songs—and when we turn Scripture into prayers that we give back to our Father who inspired every page of the Book to begin with, and we offer it to Him through prayer, it becomes a sacred song. Sacred prayers—brought back and set at His feet, offered to Him as a sacrifice. So today I come on my knees at the Throne of Grace to bring my Father a song of praise and prayer, asking for love. And I will be praying 1 Corinthians 13 to do this, which obviously is not found in the book of Psalms—but I will still categorize this as a prayer of psalmody because the heart that I use to bring this to God—of offering these words of His back to Him through elevated speech of song and poetry and prayer—is one of sacred song in prayer. And so I ask you to come with me now, bowing your heart and mind and soul, to seek the love of God which is greater far than tongue or pen could ever tell (Frederick Lehman, The Love of God, 1917).


Our Father who art in heaven, whose love outweighs what we could ever begin to measure (Ephesians 3:17-19), we come to You asking for Your loving Spirit to hear us and bend low to accept the prayers we bring. May You be honored and hallowed as we bring You our desire to emulate Your magnificent attribute of love beyond all description because of Christ Your Son who dwells in our souls. Please give us a desire to pray for love with honesty, and to make this request with sincerity. May increasing our love be just one of the ways You further Your Kingdom here on earth, and showcase Your will.

We need love, Lord God, more love—deeper, truer, selfless love. Give us love that abounds more and more with knowledge and discernment so we may approve what is excellent—as You do this, please fill us with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to Your glory and praise. (Philippians 1:9-11) You have made it plain that no matter what other virtues and graces we have, if we do not have love—true love, Your love—that we will be nothing short of a noisy gong or clanging cymbal. If we do not have love, we are nothing, and regardless of what we do or give, if we do not have love, we not only gain nothing but lose everything. So please, in Your grace, remind us that we need love to be preeminent—that it is worth pursuing and seeking and asking You diligently to provide because without the riches of love, we are bankrupt. O Lord, let us not love with our words and speech only, but with actions and in truth! (1 John 3:18) You are love, and we know You and belong to You—we are born of You—so please give us love for one another, because love is from You. (1 John 4:7-8) Please make us humble so that we will see our need—and give us the daily bread of love that our souls so desperately need to feed on, and use for the feeding of others around us.

Savior of our souls and bodies, please give us patience and kindness, so that love will dwell within us, fill us up, and seep from us each way, in every place, at all times. When we are poked, please give us the love we need to bleed patient hearts and kind words. Please make us content with what You have given us, but do not allow us to be lazy. Give us love for others in such abundance that we will rejoice in others’ gains without envy or covetousness. Please give us humility of heart so that we will not resort to rude arrogance and boasting. Cause us to love others so that we will rather seek their good, putting others first, sacrificing of ourselves in every way so that our humility in love will glorify You and praise Christ the Savior who gave Himself up for us in the most loving act of all history. (1 John 4:9-10) Please give us opportunities to emulate Him in daily ways.

Please fill us with love that longs to serve and sacrifice—which only You can give us. Lord, make us to give up our desires for others so that we do not insist on our own way, and do not cling to our stubborn longings. Please cause us to refrain from irritability and resentment, but rather give us joy in giving ourselves up for You, Your Kingdom, Your people, our neighbors, and even our enemies. May love dwell within us so richly that the good of others is what we crave. Grant us love that rejoices in truth and justice, rather than selfishly, haughtily, secretly rejoicing at wrongdoings and injustice—may the love in our hearts that comes from Your Spirit enable us to seek the truth at all times because the earth is full of Your steadfast love. (Psalm 33:5)

Give us love that bears all things. As we interact with our callings, our families, our tasks, and our own spiritual battles, please give us love to bear the burdens that are laid upon us. Establish our hearts in holiness. Increase our love for the people and tasks You put into our paths each day, so that we will bear what You give us with joy, patience, kindness, righteousness, and blamelessness. (1 Thessalonians 3:12-13) Please remind us, Father, to bring our burdens to You, to share the burdens of others, and to bear all things with a spirit of love and sacrifice. (Galatians 6:2)

Give us love that believes all things. When we are faced with opportunities to doubt or believe, please give us eyes to see truth, with love that desires to give others the benefit of the doubt. Keep Your commandments ever before our eyes so that we will remain grounded in truth. Delight us in loving Your commands, allow us to meditate on Your statutes. (Psalm 119:47-48) In this way, make Your laws the lens through which we look when we interact with one another, with You, and with the world. Give us joy in believing and in seeking truth, with eyes full of love that continually look for the best.

Give us love that hopes all things. Give us loving hope that is unswerving, because our hope is in You (Psalm 33:22)—the King who is merciful, gracious, slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love. (Psalm 103:8) There will be times where doubt and despair threaten to take over our hearts (Luke 24:38), so Father, we ask that You fill us with love that remembers where our hope is—that You are our hope, and that in You all things live, move, and have their being. (Acts 17:28) Be our hope so that our love will overcome all wrongs and doubts and worries.

Give us love that endures all things. Give us love that endures without fear, and stands in the day of tribulation. Enable us to love strongly even when we are wronged—give us love that covers offenses and forgives insults or injuries. (Proverbs 10:12) Take away our love of keeping score, of tracking offenses, of puffing ourselves up. Rather give us a spirit of love that takes the hit for the sake of Christ without anxiety. Grant us love that casts out fear, that loves our brethren in all situations for Your sake. (1 John 4:18-21)

Give us love that never ends. We read over and over in Scripture that Your love is everlasting, that your hesed endures forever. (Psalm 136) Please give us love that comes from You so that our love will not be blown about by our capricious nature and human emotion. When we are confronted by a scenario where we could walk away from love, rather give us the commitment to hold our ground and choose love. Give us a love that never dies, allowing us to bear Your image in this way, and help us to be friends who love at all times. (Proverbs 17:17)

God, You are the Alpha and the Omega—we are made of dust, and die like the flowers of the field—all things that are part of our humanity will diminish and fade. (Psalm 103:13-18) Our thoughts and words, our knowledge and actions: none of these will last. You continue to reveal wisdom to us by Your grace and favor, and You increase not only what we know and believe but what we do. You know us fully, so Lord, grant that we may learn through Your love how to know You more and more all the time—so that when we are united with You in glory someday, we will see You face to face as You are, and we will know You as intimately as You know us, as we will love as You do. Grow us up into maturity by Your Spirit, and in this maturity please give us superabundant measures of faith, hope, and love. These three virtues are gifts from Your hand, and You have taught us that love is the greatest of these. So Father, as we bring our petition before You for deep love to be planted and grown and harvested and fed in our souls, hear us and grant our request for the sake of Your Son Jesus Christ who loves us and freed us from our sins by His blood. (Revelation 1:5)

We love You, our God and King, because You first loved us. (1 John 4:19) Increase our love as we increase in the knowledge of You, so we may be rooted and grounded in love, and give us strength to grasp and know Your love even as it surpasses our understanding. (Ephesians 3:17-19) We bless You, God, for not rejecting our prayer, for not removing Your steadfast love from us. (Psalm 66:20) We pray in a spirit of love because of Your Spirit dwelling in us (1 John 4:12-13), and we know You hear our voice and pleas for mercy (Psalm 116:1), for the sake of Christ. Amen.

Prayers of Psalmody in Waiting

Wait for the Lord;
be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the Lord!
Psalm 27:14 (ESV)

Oh sisters, we are all waiting, aren’t we? Waiting for something seems to always be an underlying current, the chorus and refrain to which the daily returns. Deliverance from something, perhaps—a physical ailment, a dispute, imprisonment under harsh leaders. A someone—whether it be a spouse, a child, a friend. Direction from the Lord, with wisdom—for where to move, what job to take, which college to attend, how many children to have, which medical avenue to take. Waiting for results—a university entrance exam, semester finals, medical tests, hormone levels in a scary pregnancy, waiting for a wayward child to return to the fold.
Questions punctuate so much of our human life, and often the divine answers remain just beyond the reach of our fingertips or grey matter. It takes faith to wait. It often takes courage. God knows, it takes patience! These things are not easy. And we can not drum them up within ourselves—rather, we need the Lord to grant us (as one of my beloved hymns says) “patience to watch, to wait, to weep, though mercy long delay; courage our fainting souls to keep, and trust Thee though Thou slay” (Lord, Teach Us How to Pray Aright by James Montgomery, 1818). And so, for whatever you wait, my sisters, let us come together seeking the Lord today. Let us together kneel at His feet, interjecting your personal nuances where they fit, and ask for the Lord to gird us with trust, courage, and patience in the waiting—and, ultimately, deliverance from the waiting into joyful contented acceptance of the answer He provides.


God our Rock, Ebenezer that I cling to in the stony places and are reminded that You are with me (1 Samuel 7:12), I come to You now asking for Your name to be hallowed here in this place where I bow my heart, quiet my soul, and lay burdens at Your feet. I seek You now, and recognize Your goodness—please be good and merciful and gracious to me as I wait for You, for Your presence and Your answers to my requests. (Lamentations 3:25) For You alone, O God, my soul waits in silence. You are my hope, my rock, my salvation, my fortress. I can not be shaken, even though the waiting is long, because I rest on Your strength. God, please help me to know You deeply and truly as my salvation and my glory, make me to feel your strength as my rock, and your protection as my refuge. O God, I come here to pour my heart out before You! Please cause me to trust in You as I bring my yearning to Your ears anew, and give me trust in Your character rather than in Your deeds. (Psalm 62:5-8) You establish my steps, and I delight in Your way—even if I fall, You will not cast me headlong because You uphold me. (Psalm 37:23-24) O Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

Father, I am waiting, and in some ways it feels like the waiting will never end. It can seem as though I have been waiting forever already. Give me the strength to continue waiting, and to continue asking until You have made Your answer clear. When You wait to be gracious, please exalt Yourself in showing mercy. Bless me, my God and my King, in Your justice as I wait for You and wait for Your response. (Isaiah 30:18) During the waiting, please be gracious. Be my arm every morning, so that I will have the wisdom and the integrity to set my hands to necessary tasks, to prayer, to reaching up to You in faith. In this way, please save me from trouble—anxiety, worry, grasping for control—but rather be a majestic deliverer, leading me through broad places where enemies can not reach me. Lord, You are my Judge, my King, the One who commands & my heart longs to obey—You will save me. You will not lose me in this season of waiting, and You will not set me aside. (Isaiah 33:2, 21-22) O Lord in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

My heart is faint, Father, and You do not always feel nearby. Sometimes it is like calling to You from the farthest end of the earth! Even when I do not feel You, I know You are here—I know You hear my cry, O God, and listen to my prayer. You are my refuge and my strong tower against every enemy—the enemy of illness, of dispute, of missing someone, of grief, of longing—and against the ultimate Adversary the Devil, and his demons prowling about me in spiritual warfare. God my Captain, lead me to the rock that is higher than I! (Psalm 61:1-3) Lift up my face so that I look to You alone, so that I will wait for the God of my salvation, so that I will know with confidence that You hear me. You are gracious to me, and You forgive my transgressions with such magnanimity! Thank You for delighting in steadfast love, showing Your compassion to me, and treading my iniquities underfoot. O my Savior! You cast my sins into the depths of ocean and You put away Your anger! While I continue in a season of waiting, please remind me of Your past faithfulness and the way You bend low to carry me. (Micah 7:7, 18-19) Father, as I rest in the righteousness of Jesus Christ the Lord, please save me again, delivering me from snares of wickedness and peril. Thank You for being my haven of peace—please enable me to rest in this sanctuary of Your presence while I wait. (Psalm 37:39-40) O Lord in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

Sometimes it feels like I say things before I believe them, and I wait for You to bring my heart to follow my words and my mind. So God, I will trust You. I will not be afraid. Please make it so! You, God, are my salvation, my strength, and my song. Because of this, You have my trust, and I know that I do not need to fear. (Isaiah 12:2) Hear my voice, my Savior, from the depths of guttural waiting, longing, yearning. Do not ignore my cries, but be attentive. You hear me—so please listen as I beg for Your mercy. I wait for You, Lord, with my soul, and I hope in Your Word. I search Your Scriptures repeatedly, and bring my pleas to You as I wait for You, Your presence, Your answer to my petitions. The waiting feels dark and unpredictable like night. I long for the morning of revelation, knowledge, revealed paths, increased wisdom, indescribable peace. (Psalm 130:1-2, 5-6) Give me patience—it is even fearsome to pray for patience!—but grant me extra measures of endurance while I wait for You. Incline Yourself to me, hear my cry, hurry to give help, and be pleased to deliver me from this waiting and this thorn! Do not delay in coming to my side with Your help and Your deliverance, O God, for even though I am lowly, You think of me, You hear me, You know me. (Psalm 40:1, 13, 17) I commit my way to You, Lord, and trust in You for Your actions. I believe You will continue to bring forth righteousness and justice as predictably as the rising sun. I trust You! While I wait for You, busy my hands with good works and faithfulness. Allow me to truly delight in You, and to place the desires of my heart completely in Your trustworthy hands. Make me still before You—and Lord my God, strengthen me with joy and peace to wait patiently, diligently, prayerfully for You. (Psalm 37:3-7) O Lord in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

Father God, my Lord, please answer me. These days are troublesome! Protect me by the strong name of the God of my fathers. Send help from the sanctuary, support from Zion! Remember my offerings and regard my sacrifices. Please, loving Father and Lord of all, grant me the desire of my heart according to Your will—bring my plans to peaceful fulfillment as You direct my steps. I shout for joy because You have saved me, and in the name of God I desire to set up banners of loud praise again when Your deliverance comes anew! Lord, fulfill my petitions. (Psalm 20:1-5) Hear my request and end my waiting in Your mercy. God of all grace, because of Your holy will, and for the sake of Your glorious Kingdom, I boldly bring these things to Your feet. Please remember me.

O Lord in Your mercy, hear our prayer. We wait for You. Amen.

Prayers of Psalmody for our Children


Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord,
who walks in His ways!
Your children will be like olive shoots around your table.
May you see your children’s children!

Psalm 128:1, 3, 6 (ESV)

Sisters in the Lord Jesus Christ, the ones specifically today who are raising the next generation for the Kingdom of God; how we need to recover and embrace the duty, the art, the service, the joy of praying for our children. No matter how old your children are, it is time to pray for them. And if there are children in your life who you do not mother, it is still a glorious privilege to bring them before our Father as well—so please join us in praying, even if you pray for the children of others. May we break forth in prayer to our Father in the vein of mothers like Hannah, like Mary, like Lois and Eunice. May He hear us and grant us our requests in accordance with His holy will. Please kneel with me and bow your hearts in prayer, as we pray together for our children.


Holy Father in Heaven, incline Your ear toward us, answer us in our need. Please hear us for the sake our children, who belong to You according to Your covenant promises. Please, Father, preserve our lives—we seek godliness in the light of Your glory, for You are our God and we trust You. We trust You for salvation and provision, O God. Be gracious to us, and hear our cries. Lift us up and give us gladness because of Your goodness, Your forgiveness, your steadfast love. Because of these things, Triune God, we plea for grace and ask you to hear our prayers. (Psalm 86:1-6) We pray for the sake of the children You have entrusted to us. May Your will be done.

Father, my children come from a line of Christians that have been faithful to Your covenant, like Timothy’s line through Eunice and Lois. You have put faith in the hearts of my children, and I ask You to fan that flame which is a gift of God. Please enable my children to embrace the spirit of power and love and self-control that You have given them. Give my children strength to share in the sufferings for the Gospel, for You have saved my children and called them to a holy calling, for Your own purpose and grace. Lord, give my children confidence in You, and allow them never to be ashamed of their testimony for Your Kingdom. (1 Timothy 1:5-9) You are in heaven, and You alone are the Holy One.

God, please give our children the grace and wisdom they need to keep the commandments of their father, give them stout faith and diligence so that they do not forsake the teaching of their mother. Please bind Your truth on the hearts of our children and tie them around their necks, keeping the commandments of righteousness ever before their eyes. Lord, cause these things to lead our children when they walk, to watch over our children when they lie down, and to speak Truth to our children when they wake. (Deuteronomy 6:20-22) Father, give our children graceful garlands for their heads and pendants for their necks, that are the instruction and teaching of their parents in godly fear and humble hearts. Use us as their parents to instruct and teach in godliness. Please give our children faithful dedication to the things they have been taught from Your Word so that they will flee from evil, run from temptation, and not consent to the enticement of sinners. (Proverbs 1:8-10) Please protect our children from the evils that surround them, for indeed we do not only battle against the physical things of a sinful world, but against the spiritual forces of evil and the hidden principalities of the devil. Please, O Lord our God, grant that our children would be equipped with Your armor, so that they will stand firm when facing evil. Oh Father, fasten upon our children the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the gospel of peace. Give our children the shield of faith, and use it in them to extinguish the flaming darts of the evil one. Put on their heads the helmet of salvation, put in their hands the sword of the Spirit. Give our children praying hearts, making them alert with perseverance, giving them mouths to boldly proclaim Your Gospel. (Ephesians 6:10-19) In this way, O Lord, further Your Kingdom here on earth as it is in heaven. Lead our children not into temptation, and deliver them from evil.

God of all wisdom, please grant wisdom to the hearts of our children. Direct them in Your way. Teach them discernment, giving them eyes to see folly for its emptiness. Give our children ears and hearts that are eager to heed the voice of their father and honor their mother. Please give our children a love of truth, so that they will seek wisdom, instruction, and understanding in all things. O God, give us the hearts of our children, and give them eyes to observe our walks with You, even as You mercifully grant us the grace we need to walk faithfully with You. Let us rejoice and be glad over children who are faithful and righteous. (Proverbs 23:19-26) Give us faith for what we do not yet see, and give us hope for the future, knowing that You hold it all. Enable us as parents not to provoke our children to anger, but give us humble dependence on You as we bring them up in Your paideia. Cause our children to honor and obey their parents, in You, and be true to Your promise to them to bless them. (Ephesians 6:1-4) Give them their daily bread.

Lord, You are our God and God of our children, and Your name is majestic! You are glorified above all, and Your glory is in the heavens. Establish strength in our children because of Your grace, and use the faith and testimony of our children to still Your enemies. (Psalm 8:1-2) Thank You, Lord, for the heritage You have given us in these children—please continue to make us fruitful as we nurture these olive shoots for Your Kingdom. Thank You for blessing our quiver with gifts of life! Please make us skillful archers to tend these arrows, help us to hone and sharpen and straighten these arrows by Your grace and favor. May we always remember that it is not their number that is important but their efficacy. Oh Lord, make our children potent. (Psalm 127:3-5) Please give us as parents wisdom and humility to train our children in the way they should go, so they will embrace Your covenant and never depart from You, giving us grace to discipline our children according to Your Word so that folly is driven from them and their hearts are continually softened by Your Word. (Proverbs 22:6, 15)

When our children sin, Lord God, bring them to repentance quickly. Create in them clean hearts and restore righteousness to them because of Jesus their Savior. (Psalm 51:3, 10) O Lord, be merciful to our children, for You are gracious. Show them what it is to be slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. Father, forgive our children for their sins. Your love toward those who fear You is as high as heaven is above the earth! Show the depth of Your love and mercy toward our children by removing their transgressions from them as far as the east is from the west, as they fear You and repent. Show Your compassion to our children, and remember their frame of dust. Lord, our children’s days are busy as grass, but You and Your love endure for all eternity. Because of this, Lord of our family, we boldly ask You to remain faithful to our children and our grandchildren and our generations after them who keep Your covenant and do Your commandments, because You are indeed faithful and show us Your steadfast love. (Psalm 103:8-18) Forgive all of us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.

According to Your great grace, our God and Father, be pleased to bless our children. Cause them to walk in Your ways so that they will eat the fruit of their labors, that they will be blessed—bring them spouses of unique valor and give them faithful, industrious, beautiful, creative, singing, dancing children. Give our children a zest for You and fear of You—in Your mercy, bless them from Your holy mountain, show them prosperity, allow them to see their children’s children, enable them to spread peace abroad. (Psalm 128) Delight our children with Your law, and be ever on their hearts and minds. Establish our children, for the sake of Your everlasting love, like trees planted by streams of water. Make our children fruitful in their seasons, and make them green with strength and integrity. O Lord God, for the sake of Your Kingdom and the testimony of Your people, in all that our children do, give them purity and make them prosper. (Psalm 1:2-3)

Our hearts exult in You, O Lord God, in You alone are our horns exalted. We laugh at our enemies and rejoice in Your salvation. There is none holy like You, O Lord, no one beside You—no rock like You, our most faithful God. (1 Samuel 1:1-2) Hear our prayers and show Your faithfulness so that we can glorify You anew and again. Yours is the Kingdom, the Power, the Glory—always and forever. Amen.

Prayers of Psalmody in Motherhood


Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
the fruit of the womb a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
are the children of one’s youth.
Blessed is the man
who fills his quiver with them!
Psalm 127:3-5 (ESV)

My dear sisters in the Lord Jesus Christ, and most particularly today, the ones who are raising little ones for the Kingdom of God; how we need to cover not only our children in prayer but also ourselves as their mothers! I find it so much easier to pray for others than to pray for myself—but, oh, how naïve and simplistic that is! How prideful, to even pretend to think that I can get by without praying for myself. Because I need so much prayer, and especially in this wonderfully huge but terrifyingly small work of motherhood. Oh, Lord have mercy upon us!
Sisters who are mothers, please kneel with me at the feet of our Father while we bring Him our motherhood… and sisters who know mothers, please kneel alongside us and pray for us as well. We need Jesus and His grace, and we want to walk together in this journey of seeking the Kingdom to come on earth and specifically in its manifestations in the work of motherhood. Pray with me now, inserting your own personal tweaks, requests, and names as we go:


Lord of all creation, Father of all mercies, King of our hearts and homes,
Please hear us as we bring our petitions before You, and as we seek Your face today in our calling of motherhood—in all of its joys, challenges, enormity, smallness, victories, defeats, the miraculous and the mundane. You who once were knit inside Your mother, O Lord Jesus, (Luke 1:31, 35) You know what it is to dwell in a womb, to nurse on a breast, to cry in the night, to need food and clothing and snuggles and teaching—to need a mother. Hear us, Jesus, and grant that our requests would be heard and holy in the ears of Your Father, our Father.

We praise You and we bless Your name, for we know that You sit high in the heavens and that all things are under Your feet, including the daily and repetitive things. Oh Lord, You are the One that designed the daily rising and setting of the sun. You ordained repetition and routine, so please help us to embrace it and glory in it, resting in Your sovereignty even when the daily threatens to weigh us down. You look down upon those in the dust and those who are needy—even us, Father—and You lift us up, build us up, equip us, strengthen us, give us joy and promise and victory. You are our hope! We trust You, we praise You, we hope in You for every act of motherhood. Thank You for being our God, thank You for being God to our children not because we are faithful but because You are faithful, right from the womb. (Psalm 71:5-6) Thank You for the gift of children—thank You for filling wombs, filling arms, and for the various ways You do these things. It is hard to be thankful for things like infertility, miscarriage, and long roads of complicated pregnancy or adoption. But Father, in whatever ways You have accomplished our motherhood, thank You. Thank You for knitting children in wombs, for creating DNA strands and dividing cells. Thank You for secret work, for wonderful work, for intricate work. Thank You for planning each day of my life—and each day of my children’s lives. Thank You for the knowledge that I do not have power over their lives. (Psalm 139:13-16) Thank You for taking a woman and making her a mother. Thank You for making me a mother. Help me to praise You rightly for this gift, this responsibility, this joy, this mercy every single day. (Psalm 113)

Please give wisdom and kindness to my mouth, so that I will not speak harshly to my children but wisely and kindly. It is so easy to be snappy or snarky—please give words of mercy and grace in their place. (Proverbs 31:26) Please grant me a compassionate nature to remember that, like me, my children are but dust. Make me a mother who remembers the frame of my children, so that I build them up rather than tear them down. (Psalm 103:13-14) Please make me a woman that could justly be praised and blessed by those whom I serve as well as lead. (Proverbs 31:28)

Lord God, please teach me to love my children as I ought. (Titus 2:4) Be with my hands, my feet, my mouth, my ears, my eyes, my womb, my breasts—to use every part of me to love my children as You want me to, genuinely and truly. (1 John 3:18) Show me how to walk in love, so that I would lay down my life for my children not just sometimes but all the time. (Ephesians 5:1-2) Give me diligence to discipline when and how You require and desire. Allow me not to be swayed on my conviction against sin, but give me the eyes to see sin for what it is, where it is, and how it needs to be addressed. Give me the strength to love my children with discipline so that they would increase in wisdom. Please give me rest and delight rather than shame. (Proverbs 29:15, 17) Please teach me true forgiveness, so that I would forgive as I have been forgiven. (Psalm 32:1-2)

Please give me the industrious nature that I need to accomplish the work You have put into my hands. Gird me up, so that I can press on in faith, love, and holiness in self-control. (1 Timothy 2:15) When I labor to love my children, to feed them and clothe them, to educate their minds and nourish their souls, to make them happy and cover them with peace—allow me to do this in accordance with Your will, O God. (1 John 5:2-4) Cause me to obey Your commandments, to grow in my own faith so that I will always speak of Your glory and teach Your laws in ways that are true and winsome and inescapable. (Deuteronomy 6:7)

Please enable me to seek the good of my children, in their humanity and in their eternal souls. Convict me to pray for them regularly and specifically, night and day. (2 Timothy 1:3) Please remind me daily that their spiritual growth is more important than anything else, and give me the grace to preach the Gospel to my children through my actions as well as my words. Cause me to proclaim Your deeds and Your faithfulness, which You have taught me and proven to me repeatedly and continually. God who has never left nor forsaken me, allow me to rightly show forth these things to the next generation of those who love You! Give me the words and the wisdom to proclaim Your power and might. (Psalm 71:17-18) Please give us joyful praise together, to praise Your holy name! May each member of our family praise You, knowing that You are high above all things and You alone are to be exalted! Please give me the strength to teach this praise by genuine, diligent example. (Psalm 148:12-13) Be pleased, O Lord, to grant Your grace to continue on to another generation, and allow my faith and the faith of my mother and mother-in-law also to bolster the faith of my children. (2 Timothy 1:5)

Please, in Your merciful kindness, remind me that these beloved children belong to You, and help me to praise You for Your kind gift of life & appreciate the blessing of being entrusted with these little saints. Allow me to rejoice and be glad! (Proverbs 23:25) Please give me the bold strength to be tenderhearted, to imitate You in how I gather, carry, and gently lead my young ones. (Isaiah 40:11) Thank You for hearing our prayers, for remembering our frame, for loving our children, for drawing us to You by Your covenant love and faithfulness. We thank You, Lord, for Your steadfast love and Your faithfulness to our children. (Psalm 107:8, 15, 21, 31) We praise You for Jesus, our Prophet, Priest, and King, in whose glorious and saving name we pray these things at Your throne. Amen.

Prayer of Psalmody ~ in expectancy


…I love you, O Lord, my strength.
The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,
    my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,
    my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised…
Psalm 18:1-3 (ESV)

Oh sisters, are you holding new life in your womb?! Is it the rainbow after your storm? Is it the balm in the midst of your brokenness? Is it the hope of heartbeats in the space of stillness? What a time of hope mingled with anxiety! What a chance, not just daily or hourly but moment-by-moment, to lay burdens and fears and worries and doubts and terrors at the feet of Jesus—not to mention bringing Him all of our hopes and desires! I have carried miraculous life in my womb a dozen times—only the first time held naïve, unabashed hope for me. The next eleven have been terrifying, and it is only the grace of God that has carried me through each one, no matter how many weeks I held each baby in my womb. Three of my rainbow babies have made it full term, whole and healthy! What miracles! What joys! What months of prayers! There are so many times during pregnancy—especially particularly anxiety-filled times like sitting in doctors’ waiting rooms or staring at the phone just wondering when it will ring so I can find out blood test results—where I feel speechless, even in my prayers. The prayers found in Scripture, where I can speak or sing God’s words back to Him, asking for His mercies, repeating His glories, claiming truths that I know yet need to know deeper—those are the prayers that I cling to, often and particularly. So today, as I fall on my knees and bow my head before our heavenly Father, would you come with me? Would you join me in praying Psalms and other Scriptures for the lives of babies who are snuggling into warm wombs of mothers whose hearts have been broken, who are clinging to the hopes of expecting a baby… while fighting anxiety and doubt… while seeking God’s will and asking for His best… but honestly knowing that we do not know the outcome or what “God’s best” may be this time.
Please pray with me, personalizing this prayer as the Lord leads—and if you are one of my sisters in Christ who has suffered the particular grief of bereavement, now facing the particularly bittersweet joy of subsequent pregnancy, these prayers are for you and for your baby.

O God our Father who lives and reigns in heaven, You are holy and glorious, faithful and merciful. Please listen as we Your servants come before You to plead for Your mercy. Please shine the brightness of Yourself in our dark and desolate places! Incline Your ear to hear us! Open Your eyes toward us! Because of Your great mercy, not due to any righteousness in ourselves, we come to Your feet and seek Your attention, Your actions, Your interventions. We are Yours, God, called by the name of Your Son Jesus Christ, and we ask You not to delay but to act swiftly for the sake of Your own glory! (Daniel 9:17-19)

Our hearts rejoice in You, and You exalt us, O Lord. We rejoice in Your salvation so that we can even scoff at our doubts and anxieties. (1 Samuel 2:1) Having buried children in our past, we come to You humbled that You would give us renewed hope and the balm of another child nestling into wombs that have felt so broken and so empty. We magnify You and rejoice in You greatly, because You have indeed looked with mercy upon our place of humble grief—indeed, we are blessed, and want to proclaim to all generations how holy and faithful You are! Your mercy is great, from generation to generation who fear You: You are holy! (Luke 1:46-50) Thank You for looking upon our downtrodden faces and hearing our desperate cries, for creating life in our wombs. Thank You for fearfully and wonderfully knitting together children within us—for showing us with these tangible realities how truly wonderful and marvelous Your works are. Oh Father, how terrifying it is to feel so close to this baby yet so out of control and far away! Thank You for reassuring us that You have numbered the days of our children, have written them down, that You can see inside the dark secret chambers of our bodies that are unknown even to us. Thank You for intricately weaving the tapestry of each child—thank You for building bones, sewing sinews, commanding heartbeats, tenderly stitching flesh, carefully creating each little detail of our children’s frames, breathing souls into them. (Psalm 139:13-16) Please continue this great craft that You are fashioning—please grant continued life, growth, and faith. We cry to You, O Lord: please have mercy upon us. Please keep death and sorrow far from us. Our souls are cast down with fear and anxiety, full of turmoil. Give us hope in You: cause us to praise You, for You are our Salvation, our God! (Psalm 42:11) Be our Helper, send Your sweet mercies—we will praise You, we will tell of Your faithfulness. With the new life You knit inside us, You have turned mourning into dancing—You take our garments of sorrow and give us the clothing of gladness! God of all creation, may we glorify You in this wondrous work of new life, may we sing Your praises and never be silent, may we give thanks to You forever. (Psalm 30:8-12)

As we continue going forward each day, giving our anxieties to You and declaring our hopes to You, cause us to tell everyone of Your blessings toward us as You deliver us from the deepest anguish of grief—keep us from restraining our lips. Enable us to proclaim Your faithfulness, Your salvation, Your love, Your deliverance! Give us the hope and confidence in You that we need to tell everyone about Your great works, and give us the humility to ask others to join us in prayer. Grant that we all would rejoice and be glad in You, love Your salvation, and proclaim Your greatness. Thank You for taking thought of us in our humble place—thank You for being our Help and Deliverer! Do not delay in granting us Your peace, health, hope, and joy. (Psalm 40:9-10, 16-17) God in heaven, we are bold to ask: grant life! Grant living babies to us so that we can praise You yet again, and in new ways.

We rejoice in You, our Father, and take joy in You—You have saved our souls, and that is just one more reason for praising You amidst our current uncertainties and joys—You have power over life and death and resurrection. You are our strength, and we ask You to make our feet like the feet of deer, allow us to dance on the high mountains! (Habakkuk 3:18-19) Christ, You dwell in our hearts through faith: root us, ground us, give us comprehension—so that even when we are fearful for our future, worried for the life of our child, we would know the immensity of Your love and be filled with God’s fullness. You, indeed, are the One that is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we could ask or think! To You alone, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, be all glories for all generations—including the glory of the generation in our wombs. (Ephesians 3:17-21) Your steadfast love is better than life, and we praise You with our mouths, even through this time of prayer: we will continue to bless You as long as we live, lifting our hands in Your name. (Psalm 63:3-4) For Yours is the Kingdom, the Power, and the Glory forever and ever. Amen.

© Melissa Joy, 2014

Written originally for Mommies With Hope, Melissa Joy seeks to grow in grace and wisdom alongside her husband Steven, while pursuing joyful domesticity by nurturing her home and family. The blessing of motherhood and the blessing of growth in Christ have intersected in a beautiful and challenging way for her, as she embraces being Mommy to twelve beloved children: 3 in her arms, 9 in the heavenly choir. The joy she finds in her family, homemaking, music, writing, ministering to those in grief, and seeking to be a pillar of loving strength in her home can be seen unveiled at Joyful Domesticity.

Prayer of Psalmody ~ in grief


Hear my prayer, O Lord; give ear to my pleas for mercy!
In Your faithfulness answer me in Your righteousness!
Psalm 143:1 (ESV)

The book of Psalms is often referred to as the songbook of Scripture, but it is also a prayer book. So would you join me in praying some psalms today as we grieve and yearn and seek God’s face of mercy together? Let’s use the psalms today as our skeleton for prayer, and ask God to hear us as we gather together from various places at various times, but with one mind and one purpose—seeking His favor while glorifying Him even as we fall at His feet in tears of grief and longing. Please pray with me, interjecting your own specific requests as we go along.

Our Father in the glories of heaven, we ask that Your holy name would be honored and glorified as we fall at Your feet. (Matthew 6:9)

Oh Father, we are crying out to You with our voice—to God with the voices You gave us. Please give Your ear to us! We are in days of trouble, and we are seeking You, Lord. The night feels endless, and our souls ache with discomfort. We feel so troubled, even when we remember You and Your sovereignty—it is overwhelming and we need to pour out our anguish before You. (Psalm 77:1-3) Have you cast us off forever? Will Your favor ever return to us? Where did Your mercy go? We know You are faithful, yet did Your promises fail? Where is Your grace? Have You forgotten me? Are You angry at me? Have You put away Your mercy? Oh God, this is my anguish—my fears, my doubts, my pain. But indeed, You have been faithful: I remember the things You have done, for me and for others, now and in the past. Please help us to meditate on Your works, to praise You as we talk of the things You have done. (Psalm 77:10-13) You are our shield, our glory, the One who lifts our head. We are crying to You with our voice, and we ask You to hear us from Your holy hill. Arise, O Lord! Save us, oh our God! Death is our enemy, and we know that You have victory over death and the grave—salvation belongs to You, and we believe in the resurrection, Lord. Please let us see that Your blessing is on Your people—even us, our wombs, our children. (Psalm 3:3-4, 7-8)

You are our Shepherd. Because of You, we do not want for anything—You give us all that we need, food and drink, protection and even delight. You restore our souls, even through the aching grief. Continue to lead us in paths of righteousness for the sake of Your name. But Father, do You see us? We are walking through the valley of the shadow of death! It is so dark in this shadowy valley. Please remind us to fear no evil—even here—because You are with us. Please comfort us with Your rod and Your staff: directing, leading, carrying, tenderly showing us the way through this valley. (Psalm 23:1-4) Deliver us, cover us, be our refuge; gird us with Your truth as our armor for defense and protection. The Lord is our refuge: be our dwelling place so evil and harm will be kept far from us. Keep us in all our ways—whether grieving or rejoicing—reminding us that Your angels keep charge over us. Bear us up, keep us safe: deliver us because we love You, pick us up out of the dust back to the high places because we know Your name. We call to You! Answer us! We are in trouble, Lord God—please be with us, deliver us, and honor us for the sake of Your glory. (Psalm 91:3-4, 9-15)

Oh Lord, our dwelling place, teach us to number our days so that we would be wise in heart. Grant us Your wisdom. How long until we feel Your mercy return to us, O Lord? We, Your servants, seek Your compassion! We want to rejoice, we long to be glad all our days! Please come and satisfy our empty places with Your mercy. We have spent years in affliction, suffering the awful effects of evil and sin—burdened by death. Please restore gladness to us, in the wake of this affliction. Show us Your work! Give us children so that we can show them Your glory! Oh God, pour out Your beauty upon us, by establishing the work of our hands. Great King and Creator of all life, yes, establish the work of our hands! (Psalm 90:12-17)

Father, I implore Your grace on behalf of so many sisters who are suffering: please, grant them the desires of their hearts, as they glorify You, and fulfil their plans, as they align with Your will. (Psalm 20:4) As we kneel here at Your feet, please hear our cries for the sake of our Savior Jesus Christ, Your Son who was Himself the Man of Sorrows and acquainted with grief, because it is in His holy name that we pray these things. Greatness, power, glory, victory, and majesty are Yours and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is Yours; thank You for hearing our prayers, Head of all creation. (1 Chronicles 29:11) For Yours is the Kingdom, the Power, and the Glory forever and ever. Amen.


© Melissa Joy, 2014

Written originally for Mommies With Hope, Melissa Joy seeks to grow in grace and wisdom alongside her husband Steven, while pursuing joyful domesticity by nurturing her home and family. The blessing of motherhood and the blessing of growth in Christ have intersected in a beautiful and challenging way for her, as she embraces being Mommy to twelve beloved children: 3 in her arms, 9 in the heavenly choir. The joy she finds in her family, homemaking, music, writing, ministering to those in grief, and seeking to be a pillar of loving strength in her home can be seen unveiled at Joyful Domesticity.