Praise be to you, Lord, for new life, for joy and peace, for hope and purpose, for your love and embrace. To know you is way beyond good–it is the deep desire of every human heart, to be enfolded in a rich relationship with the Creator of the universe–but sadly, most resist acknowledging it and are instead locked into the crushing embrace of the negative values of this fallen world.
To rest in your embrace of love, the warmth of your acceptance, the grace you exude at each moment, to rejoice in the lack of condemnation, the lack of accusation and conditional acceptance—these realities are so wonderfully edifying, strengthening, encouraging and empowering.
I can go out with you into today, Lord Jesus, knowing that you are not only with me, but within me, that you will never leave me. I can trust you fully to guide me through the obstacle course of today as we wend our way forward in this fallen world, leaving behind a trail that others can follow.
I praise you that you know every bend, every turn, every pitfall, as well as every ambush the enemy has set up. And you have prepared me for them. As I keep on the whole armor of God”, listening to your Spirit, I can respond to each ambush, stand against each attack and be more than a conqueror no matter what Satan may throw at me. “I called to the LORD, who is worthy of praise, and I have been saved from my enemies” (Ps 18:3).
I may trip, fall or get knocked down, but remaining in your truth by confession and repentance, I can spring to my feet and continue on the path of righteousness you are leading me down for your name’s sake.
“I love you, O Lord, my strength.” You, LORD, “are my rock, my fortress and my deliverer… my shield and…my stronghold” (Ps. 18:2) and as I stay behind the shield of your love, in the stronghold of your holiness, and on the rock of your mercy, I am safe.
Praise be to you, the God of goodness, the Lord of love, the King of kindness, the Giver of grace. Today I choose to live in the truth that “Knowing Jesus is Enough for Joy,” following your example, Lord Jesus, as you, “for the joy that was set before you, endured the cross despising the shame and are set down at the right hand of God” (Heb. 12:2).
Help me to keep my eyes on you and the joy of knowing where I am going in life and death, for then the difficulties and pain of this life will fade in significance and power, so I can run with patience the race you have set before me.