“I love the LORD, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy.” Psalm 116:1


Praise be to you,

Heavenly Father,

the Great I Am,

the Creator of all

and the Director of Life.

You are the glorious One, worthy of praise, worthy of honor, worthy of love, for your ear always “is open to my cry and your eye is on the righteous.”

There is not a second when you are not focused upon each individual in the world, especially your children. “From heaven, the Lord looks down and sees all mankind” (Psa. 33:13). No event escapes your notice, no happening comes without your permission.

You do not prevent every difficulty or trouble from coming to us, for in your wisdom you know that our growth comes in and through problems and hardships. And each uncomfortable, unwanted situation is another chance to honor you with faith and the sacrifice of praise. It is an opportunity to dance with joy on the stage of life, clothed in grace, energized with truth, surrounded by the light of your love.

When I think back in my own life, there are many examples of your surrounding me with your protection in the midst of difficulty.

  • When we were traveling through Greece, an oncoming car had its left front tire blow out and was drawn into our lane, but you caused me to respond and avoid a head-on collision. The result was minimal damage, and great memories of your provision and grace.
  • When we were expelled from the country, we were able to come right back and stay another 12 years.
  • When I was turned in to the police by a disciple, fired from my job, put on trial, shunned by fellow workers and threatened with the loss of our apartment, you brought acquittal, a statement of greater religious freedom and protection to stay in the country—plus I no longer had to work as a teacher but could work full time to plant churches!
  • In a summer of tremendous stress, you used the pressure to reveal that I needed a stent in my heart, and used the ensuing pain to bring me into contact with my doctor friend in Germany who has poured blessing after blessing over us in his generosity.

With the psalmist, I can shout, “Because he turned his ear to me, I will call on him as long as I live” (Ps. 116:2). You, O God, are faithful, you are good, you are wise, you are wonderful. To come into your presence is a privilege, a joy, a grace

picture: us in our late 40s.

May be an image of 2 people and eyeglasses