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A prayer request from one in my Congregational UCC of Saint Charles family, Tara –

Please add my cousin Will and his 9 year old daughter, Lucy to your prayers. Will’s wife Ashly and their 7 year old son Vince were involved in a fatal car accident this week. This has been devastating for our entire family

This morning I opened my email to this request and it brings up an internal debate that I’ve been having for a long time:

What about when bad things happen? Does God’s plan intend the untimely death of a seven-year-old and a young mother? How can such terrible things happen to people we believe are good?

My God hasn’t let that happen to me; I’ve reached a ripe old age, older than I dreamed possible since the women in my family have historically died young. In fact, I never planned for retirement since I expected to die at 49 like my mother did. But anyway… I don’t have the ultimate response when someone asks “how could this have happened?” I can only say that I don’t know if God sticks a hand in and causes bad things to happen. I believe God called the world into being, though. I certainly believe that whether good or bad, God calls me to make the best of it. God asks that I make something good and worthy and holy out of every single thing that happens to me. I believe in God.

Will you pray with me, please?

Constant Caller,

I come to thee today filled with questions. I trust that only thee has the answers because only thou are God. I’m not meant to understand certain things because I am merely human. Were these deaths untimely? I don’t know and I’m ok with that. I know my answer isn’t necessarily helpful to the grieving family and I have to be ok with that, too. Thou knows all things, creates all things; do thou end all things deliberately even when it shakes us to our cores? Perhaps. Perhaps the Ecclesiastes author who purported “To everything, there is a season” heard it when thou whispered in her/his ear. I don’t know, but God knows. Thou are amazing!

Re-Freshing Responder,

Today, I bring Ashly, Vince and all who love(d) them to thee. Remind them to rest in thy strong and loving arms. Remind them to be gentle with one another, to be patient and kind, to be respectful. Remind them that self-care must come first so grant them rest and nourishment and time to heal. Remind them that grief is normal and good, that Shiva is a holy time still practiced by Jews and something that all could use. Grant all of them peace. Whisper answers in their expectant ears, be that small voice in the dark night of their souls.

Gracious God,

Thou are the source of all good things, maybe all bad things too. Today, I’m grateful for holiday mugs with my offsprings’ mugs on them. I am grateful for my thoughtful, reflective mind, for candles and antihistamines and tissues into which I can blow my runny nose. I am grateful for immunoglobulin therapy and the possibility that I’ll receive it. I am grateful for Sully and his squeak toys since they remind me to be joyful. I am grateful for the corn casserole recipe and the resources to buy the ingredients to make it. I am grateful for Steve who buys the ingredients and those who grew or combined them. I am grateful for thee, oh Lord. I love thee so much!

And I pray in Jesus supportive 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, 2019


My friend, Susan, is concerned about her trip for the holidays.  Time with family has previously been very difficult.

Beautiful Savior,

You supply our every need.  You have created the sun and the stars.  You hung the moon.  You inspired humanity to create planes, trains, automobiles. Amazing!

train in snow

Loving Lord,

I bring Susan to you today.  Grant her your grace and free her from anxiety.  Remind her that you are always with her and she need fear nothing.  Remind her that you can do all things.  Remind her that she need only pray in times of anxiety and that you will send your peace to her.  Help Susan to find healthy ways to occupy her time.  Remind Susan to use these healthy means to distract her from worry.  Help Susan to make alternative plans, so that if things go wrong,  she can call Matt or me or Steve and activate her plan to come home early.  Let Susan remember that you made her a very smart and very capable woman and that she need not worry about any of this, only pray.

I pray also today for her family.  Inspire each of them to love. Remind everyone to take good care of themselves and each other.  Grant them your incredible peace.  Remind them they have the ability to communicate as adults, stating their needs and negotiating plans that suit all well.


Glorious Grandother,

You have created us with intellect, with resources, with abilities.  We often think only of our flaws and, Lord, that means we are thinking less of you, who is all things, does all things, made all things.  Thank you for our lives.  Thank you for dogs and job possibilities. Thank you for friends.  Thank you for family.  I love you so much!

Through Jesus Christ,


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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Posting Dates

September 2020

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