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God of sun and rain, God of calm and catastrophe,
Only you can heal our church, only you can heal our souls. You called the world into being; you were there before the beginning and you will be there long after the end. You seek in Holy Love to save us from aimlessness and sin. You are amazing!
Loving Lord,
I call you to be with us. Hold each of us close to you, support us with love, wrap your arms around us, let us cry if we must and help us to heal. Remove our anger and our doubt. I pray that, if it is your will, you will heal my church; that all may be one and that any conflict may be resolved: peacefully, fully and to your Glory. And, Lord, let me be a blessing. Let me be a peacemaker.

Almighty Architect,

We thank you for all that you have given us: millions of shades of green in the gardens, more than enough resources to sustain us, and people who strive to emulate you, who love with us and work with us.
I pray in Jesus’ mighty and loving name.


To God be the Glory!

Love always,

Melissa Pazen, MSW


39w328 W. Burnham Ln, Geneva, IL  60134

Cell:  773.405.3301

LIVE INSPIRED: think boldly; love unconditionally; behave respectfully; act deliberately, kindly, justly, mercifully and humbly; forgive easily; live authentically; laugh frequently!

© Melissa Pazen, 2017

The Lord’s Prayer — Even for Your Enemies

The place to start in praying for our enemies is the prayer that the Lord taught us to pray. Whatever else you pray for your enemies, pray for them like this:

  • Father, grant that my enemy — my colleague who snubs me, my wife who belittles me, my child who disrespects me, the ISIS member who wants to kill me — grant that they would come to hallow your name. Grant that they would treasure you above all, and reverence you, and admire you more than anything.
  • Father, grant that my enemy would come under the saving, purifying sway of your kingly rule and that you would exert your kingly power to make my enemy your own loyal subject.
  • Grant, Father, that my enemy would love to do your will the way the angels do it in heaven with all their might, and without reservation, and with the purest motives, and with great joy.
  • Grant, Father, that my enemy would have all the physical resources of food and clothing and shelter and education and health-care and transportation that he needs to fulfill your calling on his life.
  • And forgive my enemy his sins, as you bring him to repentance, and make him a forgiving person, and protect him from overpowering temptations, and from the destructive power of the devil.


“Love is patient… slow to anger” I Cor 13:4-5


Will you pray with me, please?

Continual Creator,
Only you could have made us to have love, for you ARE love.  You are the source of our strength. I worship your amazing ways.

Laugh Lover,
I confess that I am having problems with another volunteer and need you to soften his heart and mine. Our history is of abrasion. I judge when I need not and become anxious when I even see e-mail from him. Remind me that I can do all things through you. Help me to remember that your love dwells in me and can be summoned even when I feel most angry. Bathe me in your grace, I beg of you, Lord.

hands make hearts

Incredible Imagineer,
You gave us warmth on a cold day, the thought to build shelter against the wind. All that I have is from you and I am grateful! I love you so much!

Knowing that Jesus said to ask in His name, I dare to do so – I pray that you will help me and make my intent pure.

In Jesus name,

To God be the glory!

© Melissa Pazen, 2013

Live Inspired: pray continually; think boldly; dare greatly; love unconditionally; act deliberately, kindly, justly, mercifully and humbly; forgive easily; laugh frequently!

My sweet/feisty mother-in law was hospitalized on Tuesday.  She pressed her medic-alert bracelet because her legs hurt too much to get out of bed.  Since arriving at Glenbrook Hospital, she’s been seen by a wonderful Internist, Colleen Nugent, MD who is finding enough that she’s told me she is uncomfortable discharging Annamae to her own home.  We’ve thanked God regularly for Annamae making it to age 92 and continuing to be able to live independently and alone, knowing this could only happen by God’s hand.

This woman became a nurse and was part of the Women’s Army Corps, mending soldiers in Texas during World War II.  With a heart of gold and a mouth like Roz Russell, she gets things done.  She is the dowager of the DeCaluwe/Hitchens family these days, having lived a long time.

That's Annamae, front & center (almost).  Seated to the right of the groom.

That’s Annamae, front & center (almost), seated to the right of the groom.

I’ve just gotten off the phone with Annamae who reports that she’s angry and she threw newspapers and things around her room.  Her niece, Pat (amazingly the volunteer coordinator at Glenbrook), was summoned and suggested Annamae behave herself.  (I spoke with Pat who confirmed this.)

Will you pray with me, please?

Almighty Architect,

You are amazing!  While many of your creations live only a few years, you designed this woman with such good ‘stuff’ that she’s still in pretty good shape at 92.  I know your plan will be fulfilled. Annamae, through her actions, will demonstrate whether or not she should be living alone. If she is meant to go home, let her behave nicely in the hospital.  If it’s time for other living arrangements, let her not act too out of control.

Loving Lord,

You already have helped us all prepare.  If it’s your will, let Steve & me find a way to accommodate her in our home.  I know Steve isn’t eager for this, but I know you can inspire him to understand and agree.  And if Annamae can continue to live independently with help, let us find someone who will care well for her, ethically and generously.  I pray that if it’s time Annamae will move easily to assisted living and we’ll work the situation  out to your glory.  Lord, I pray you’ll be the medication that cures her current complaints and relieve the pain Annamae has in her legs that keep her from walking.  Lord, I pray that you’ll help her with confusion/lucidity so that she’s comfortable emotionally wherever she ends up.  She has said so many times that she doesn’t want to move from her condo.  If it’s time, we need your grace to find the words that will help her to accept the situation.

Annamae with Savannah, her great niece, sitting on Annamae’s walker (making the DeCaluwe Thanksgiving Day Parade).

Generous  Giver,

Thank you for smart & patient medical staff members.  Thank you for hospitals with private rooms that are lovely.  Thank you for beds that can be raised or lowered to make an older lady close to comfortable and get her to the proper height to rise and stand.  Thank you for medicines.  Thank you for family, especially Annamae’s nephew, Joe and niece, Pat.  They cared for their own mother, they care for their father and now, through the accident of proximity, they do many things for Annamae.  Thank you for medicare and insurance to pay the bills.  Thank you for veterans’ benefits to care for a woman who worked through WWII.  Thank you for quick wit and sarcasm; thank you for Annamae.  I am grateful.  Lord, I love you so much!

In Jesus’ name,


To God be the glory!

© Melissa Pazen, 2013

Live Inspired:  pray continually; think boldly; dare greatly; love unconditionally; act deliberately, kindly, justly, mercifully and humbly; forgive easily; live authentically; laugh frequently!

The prayer at the end of this devotional,  published today, reminds me of Stephen Ministry and my training for it.  The body of the devotional is exactly the kind of story that led me to a talk I gave a year ago in San Diego.


I doubt the Stephen Ministers are often privileged to have someone share such serious parental abuse, yet I pray that as each care giver stands in the mud with her/his care receivers (official or unofficial), we can lean on God’s strength to avoid slipping with them into the ‘slough of despair’.

Will you pray with me please?

Unimaginable One,

You call us out of the darkness.  You created the light and you invite us to come live in the light of your kingdom.  We are honored, humbled, privileged.  You are amazing!

Lord of Love,

I pray for all who suffer the abuse of power by another human.  I pray especially for the vulnerable who should be cherished and protected but who are harmed by those who they were told to trust.  I pray for those who are told they must be wrong or that they are liars when they tell another adult of the abuse.  Be the comfort.  Be the healing energy.  Enfold them in your loving embrace and let them again feel safe.  You are the love through all the world and beyond.  Only you can help them by empowering them and others to do well.


I pray for those too weak or naïve to protect the vulnerable.  Lord, please open their eyes and let them lean on your strength.  Let them use your strength to create a safe place for the victims.  Let them help to keep the victims out of harm’s way.


Lord, I bring to you also the abusers.  They have been weak to these sins; they have not overcome the temptations.  Bring them, too, into the light, Lord.  Show them the path on which to put their feet.  Make their journey aim for your kingdom and straighten the path for them as they begin to walk with you.  Send your saints to them, to walk beside them and encourage them and love them.

Gracious Giver,

You are the source of the technology to deliver the devotionals.  You put the thought into Donna Schaper’s mind to write the words we read.  You inspire me with forgiveness for perpetrators of hate, compassion for those to weak to stop what they know is wrong, and love for those who suffer from violations.

All that we have, all that we cherish, all that we enjoy comes from you.  I am grateful.  Lord, I love you so much!

Jesus told us to ask in his name, that our joy be made full.

I pray in Jesus’ name,


Not to us, but to God be the glory!

© Melissa Pazen, 2013

Live Inspired:  pray continually; think boldly; dare greatly; love unconditionally; act deliberately, kindly, justly, mercifully and humbly; forgive easily; laugh frequently!

Source of Snow & Sunshine, Only you could have brought Matt & Susan together.  Only you could have created Susan, perfect in the ways you want her.  Only you could have created Matt, perfect in the ways you want him.  Only you could make Matt fall in love with Susan and make Susan in love with Matt.  You are amazing!

sunshine and snow

Lord of Love, I pray you will bring sunshine into Susan’s relationships with Matt, Sarah, Aaron, Matt’s son John, Matt’s daughter Kellie, Susan’s parents, brother and sister.  If Matt’s parents or siblings are alive, add them too.   I pray the only precipitation on their wedding day be tears of joy! Knit all these creations of yours together into a strong and loving family, wanting only the best for one another.  Remove stitches of anger, disappointment and depression if any try to knit these in.  Create a beautiful, durable fabric of all these people and their feelings and actions for one another.

knit family

Generous Giver, Thank you for marriage.  Thank you for those we love and those who love us.  These and everything more comes as an extravagant gift from you.  Amazing blessings.  I am grateful.  I love you so much!

marriage roses

In Jesus’ almighty name,


To God be the glory!

Melissa Pazen © 2013

Live Inspired:  pray continually; think boldly; dare greatly; love unconditionally; act deliberately, kindly, justly, mercifully and humbly; forgive easily; laugh frequently!

Five or so years ago, my prayer partners and I prayed for the life of one of a set of twins.  Ellie was born, it seemed, very prematurely.  Her sister Mollie, though, was quite ready.  Ellie lives and is a blessing to those who have her in their lives.  God’s purpose if always amazing to me.

Glorious God,

Only you could have kept Ellie alive.  Only you know the depths of our hearts and souls.  Only you fully understand our best and our worst, our most beautiful and our ugliest thoughts and emotions.  Amazing!

Lord of Light,

I bring Thea to you this morning.  Thank you for her healing to date.  We are thrilled that she is doing so well.  I pray for her continued health, Lord.  If you would keep the cancer out of her body for at least a few more years, I’d be very grateful.  Of course, you’re in charge, so I’ll go with whatever happens.I bring Susan, to you this morning.  And her daughter, Sarah, and her son, Aaron.  I bring also Matt, Susan’s fiancé, and his daughter, Kelly (ie?), and his son, whose name I don’t know.  I know you can heal the anger, the sadness, the sense of hopelessness in each of them, Lord.  I pray you will hit Aaron & Kelly with your heavenly 2×4 to knock a bit of sense into them.  Show them their anger

hate to lovehas no good purpose.  Help them to know that with you, they have the ability to get over it.  Show them the reason to replace the anger with happiness that Matt & Susan love one another.  Over time, give them the tools and reasons to become one large family, filled with love and happiness.  And a job for Sarah would be a tremendous thing, too.  Give her the energy to try.  Surround her with people who bring your love.  Thank you for the inspiration to contact our CCoB “Colorado Chapter”.  Today, I will send a note to Diane and Paula to ask them to pray for Sarah and see if they have any thoughts.

God Almighty,

You’re amazing.  As I sit here praying, you give me that inspiration and I know it’s from  you! I am gleeful.  I am grateful.  Thank you, Lord. I just love you so much!

In Jesus’ name,


To God be the glory!

Melissa Pazen © 2013

Live Inspired:  pray continually; think boldly; dare greatly; love unconditionally; act deliberately, kindly, justly, mercifully and humbly; forgive easily; laugh frequently!


I spoke with a friend this morning who is devastated and furious over the tragedy last week in Newtown, CT in the US.

Incredible Imagineer,

It is only right for me to humble myself before you, the energy behind this  universe.  May I sing your praises from morning til night. When I try to describe you there aren’t words with sufficient superlative qualities.  You are more than…  older than… bigger than… deeper than…  Amazing!

Lord of Life,

I bring my friend, Kathy, to you today.  When we spoke this morning, she still was angry that you could let something like the Sandy Hook massacre occur.  She doesn’t want to worship you.  She is outraged.

And I must admit, after talking with you for all this time and asking for things and you give them to me, it scares me to think that every day I need to say “and please, no more murders.”

I’ve known for a longer time, though, that you don’t create allow only good things to happen.  I know it’s my job to face whatever horrific thing happens and find a way to make good come from it.

Help Kathy and all the people of Sandy Hook and all the rest of us to heal after last Friday’s unconscionable event.  Let us be love for one another.  Let us glimpse your love and pass it to all.

Glorious Grandother,

Thank you for giving Kathy the idea to move into action.  While she works on organizing for legislation, she has a sense of the power you have given every one of us.  Thank you for inspiring Kathy to use her gifts for good.   Thank you for inspiring her to bring your justice to our world. Let us make your kingdom come, on earth as it is in heaven.

You have given to us extravagantly.  I love you so much!

And I pray in Jesus’ name,


To God be the glory!

Melissa Pazen © 2012

Live Inspired:  pray continually; think boldly; dare greatly; love unconditionally; act deliberately, kindly, justly, mercifully and humbly; forgive easily; laugh frequently!

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September 2020

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