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Humblest of Holies,

The universe cries out “I am beautiful! I am glorious! I am God’s!” Every space in creation echoes praises of you; every corner and opening demonstrates your incredibly beautiful work. You are the ever-present energy that is the sole source of all, great and minute, subtlest and brightest. Even the tenacious dandelions and the violets raise a cacophony of your elegant glory. We cannot ignore it, whether it be visual or the voices of a gaggle of geese on their way to the lake, honking to proclaim your powers, beyond our imaginations. You are amazing!

Gracious Giver,

I ask nothing today but to be aware of all of this. Thank you for ears to hear and eyes to see. Thank you for a nose to smell and a mouth to taste and experience the goodness of our Creator. I love you so much!

And I pray this in Jesus’ powerful name,

Amen.

 

To God be the Glory!

 

Love always,

Melissa

Melissa Pazen, MSW

INSPIRED COACHING, MELISSA PAZEN

39w328 W. Burnham Ln, Geneva, IL  60134

Cell:  773.405.3301

www.melissapazen.net

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

© Melissa Pazen, 2020

In today’s StillSpeaking Devotional, Matthew Laney uses a passage from Genesis:

God tested Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham! Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains that I shall show you.” – Genesis 22:1-2 (NRSV)

Laney likens inoculating his daughter to God’s test of Abraham. He goes on to say that many of us sacrifice our “children on the altars of our careers and smartphones.” I’ve been guilty of the former.  I’ve also sacrificed my children on the altar of romantic relationships. I confessed this to my now-grown children as part of my 9th step amends, but it still hits a nerve to read today’s devotional. Will you pray with me, please?

Unique Universe-Creator,

You are the God of Abraham and Isaac; you are the God of Christopher and Katherine and me. Only you could have called the worlds into being. You are bigger than, more than anything I can imagine. You are amazing!

Loving Lord,

Today, I bring my relationships to you; those with my children and all my relationships, even my relationship with you. Remind me to prioritize and be right-minded in setting the proper things before others. Remind me not to squander my inheritance, nor the inheritance I might leave to my children. Keep my heart pure and help me to remember responsibilities before frivolities.

Generous Giver,

All that I have, from my car to my coffee, from my house to my husband, from my children to my childishness, all comes from you. Thank you for a warm home in the winter, a car to carry me to contemplative worship on Wednesday mornings, for my children who are now adults and who can be honest enough with me to call me out on my transgressions of parenthood. Thank you for clearing the ice from the patio before the prospect of snow tonight. Thank you for everything. I am grateful. Lord, I love you so much!

And I pray in the powerful name of Jesus, who told me to do so,

Amen.

To God be the Glory!

 

Love always,

Melissa

Melissa Pazen, MSW

INSPIRED COACHING, MELISSA PAZEN

39w328 W. Burnham Ln, Geneva, IL  60134

Cell:  773.405.3301

www.melissapazen.net

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

© Melissa Pazen, 2020

Jesus came to Galilee … saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.” – Mark 1:14-15 (NRSV)

This UCC devotional, written by the Rev. Vince Amlin, (link) is one I have already sent to my son who, after 9/11, was concerned with clean underwear and a charger for his phone, both given to him by store personnel; yes, GIVEN.  New York University set up free housing in north Central Park hotels for students affected, like my son (he lived 2 blocks east of the Twin Towers) and gave each $200 until they could get back into their apartment-dorms to dust (at least, I think he dusted). I’m grateful to be so cavalier about that fateful day now; I was in a panic and had three co-workers praying with me until we heard that my son was ok.

 

I judged him (though I should never judge another) in the days that followed. He had no classes. He could get to Hoboken to see his girlfriend. He could get to the library to study. He never went south of 14th Street to help with the cleanup.

 

I’m not one who believes that God micromanages us.  I have a hard time asking for a green light or a parking space, unless I’m really, really rushed.  I pray most mornings with a format of ‘praise, ask, thank’. I believe God asks us to make the best of whatever happens to us and I believe that God delights when we do! I’m sure God grieved with all those who touched the lives of those who died that day, terrorist or terrorized. I believe God grieved for the people who piloted planes into the World Trade Center Twin Towers as well as those who died helping others to get to safety.

 

 

I am grateful, and I’m sure God is, for all the people who helped find the survivors and clean up the mess.  I believe God grieved Bin Laden’s death before Bin Laden had a chance to see that hate is not the answer.

 

I wish my son had helped.  I’m not in my son’s skin and I don’t know what PTSD he had in the days afterward. I love my son. God loves my son. God loves me.

 

Will you pray with me, please?

Omnipresent Organizer,
Only thee keep the earth spinning on its axis around our sun. Only thee created it all, part and parcel.  Some people turn good; some turn bad; some are indifferent.  Thee delight, I believe, in those of us who do good things and who are good people and who think good thoughts, no matter how large or small.
Or am I anthropomorphizing?  I think not. I think thou are wonderful. Thee are beyond my imagination and thee are amazing!
Almighty Answerer,
I pray today for a day free of terrorism. I pray for my family, keep us safe if it be thy will. I pray the same for my friends. Lord, thee know I am underemployed and have little money. I pray thee will remind me to be the best job applier I can be so that I can land the job of our dreams, thy and mine. Thy will, not mine, be done. I pray for those who are sick. For those thee will heal, please do so quickly, if it be thy will. For those who will die, please bring them to thy glorious paradise quickly, so they don’t need to suffer — but thee know best and I’m sure sometimes that suffering can serve thy glorious purpose. I pray for those who are too cold in this northern hemisphere and too hot in the southern hemisphere. Climate change scares me a little, but I know thee’ve got it under control in a way I can’t understand.
And forgive me, please, Lord, for being judgmental. I know better; I’m still human, but I keep striving for progress, never claiming perfection.
Generous Giver,
Thank thee for my furnace which hasn’t seemed to stop running this morning of 6 degrees Fahrenheit. Thank thee for the possibility of jobs. Thank thee for the lovely bracelet Mary gave to me for my birthday with a cross and the word ‘blessed’ on it. Thank thee for the Fitbit my kids gave to me that reminds me to walk. Thank thee for all good things which come from heaven above. Thank thee for thy love. Lord, I love thee so much!

In Jesus’ almighty name,

Amen.

To God be the Glory!

 

Love always,

Melissa
Melissa Pazen, MSW

INSPIRED COACHING, MELISSA PAZEN

39w328 W. Burnham Ln, Geneva, IL  60134

Cell:  773.405.3301

www.melissapazen.net

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

© Melissa Pazen, 2019

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.
Amen.

 

To God be the Glory!

Love always,

Melissa
Melissa Pazen, MSW

INSPIRED COACHING, MELISSA PAZEN

39w328 W. Burnham Ln, Geneva, IL  60134

Cell:  773.405.3301

www.melissapazen.net

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

© Melissa Pazen, 2017

Glorious GrandOther,

Columbine-Flower-24praise you for spring. If I had created the colors, the world would be green and blue; you made more than the 72 colors in my box of pencils and you use them all in the spring!

Thank you for yellow, purple and pink. Thank you for the thousands of shades of green. Thank you for columbine and bleeding heart.

Only you could have imagined all of this.

You are amazing! Lord, I love you so much!

Modified by CombineZP

Amen.

 

To God be all glory!

Love always,

Melissa
Melissa Pazen, MSW

INSPIRED COACHING, MELISSA PAZEN

39w328 W. Burnham Ln, Geneva, IL  60134

Cell:  773.405.3301

www.melissapazen.net

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

I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.

~Phil. 4:13

Do you believe God hands you ‘tests’? I’m not sure I do. I strive to file these under the heading “5h%t happens” and set about making good things come from them.

Will you pray with me, please?

Bad_things_happen_glitterBeautiful Builder,
I know you called the worlds into being and set the earth spinning. When bad or hard things happen around me, I’m not sure these are the works of your hands. I know you can do all things, but I have a hard time imagining you playing chess with Satan and letting him mess up Job’s life. Is that how you are? I don’t know, but I know you are amazing!

Loving Lord,
Remind me to focus the energy you give me on things I can control. Let me work diligently on making situations better. When I run out of resources, help me to lean on your strength and talk it over with you. Remind me that I, along with your other creations can bring your kingdom to come on earth. Humble me enough to remember to make paths of love and peace.

phil_4_13Generous Giver,
As I look at a crisp spring morning and hear birds who’ve returned after winter, I thank you for the seasons of life. I am grateful for the resources you’ve built into me and for the beauty all around me. Lord, I love you so much.

In Jesus’ name,
Amen. 

To God be the glory!

© Melissa Pazen, 2014

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

photo-chicago-men-pushing-car-in-a-snowstorm-1930Almighty Architect,

You craft the weather and show us beauty. You grant us the wisdom to know when to travel and when not to travel. You are amazing!

 

Gracious God,

Guide Susan and Bill, and all who get into cars, as they travel to spend time with loved ones during this Christmas season. Keep the roads as clear as you can, but more importantly, remind all that in winter weather a bag of kitty litter, a shovel and a soft touch on both accelerator & brakes is the true answer. Remind us that rocking works when nothing else does, but if you can, Lord, keep us from getting stuck.  Keep us safe from harm.

lumieresLoving Lord,

The car, the music or stories, the conversation, the warmth and the love — all comes from you. As I sit at a computer and type to the internet, I realize we have such “rich peoples’ problems.” I am grateful that my sorrows are so small while your gifts are great. We are grateful for all, Lord and we love you so much.

 

In Jesus’ name,

Amen.

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!

“What does the law of Moses say? How do you read it?”   The man answered, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.’ And, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”  “Right!” Jesus told him. “Do this and you will live!”

~ Luke 10: 26-7

I awakened from a dream in which I was at a KC Cougars baseball game and a woman was judging others in the name of Christianity. After some strange shenanigans (yep, it was a dream alright!), I had a chance to explain that I could sum up my faith with “Love God with all your heart. Love your neighbor as yourself.”  And “judge not lest you shall be judged.” 

(When I typed the sentence above, instead of ‘chance’, I typed ‘change’.  I find myself caught up in realizing the  similarity of these words…  and their relationship.  Hence, the title for this post.  And, yes, I’ve always been tangential!)

Now I have this song in my head. Not a bad earworm…

love_biblicalmeditation1

Will you pray with me, please?

Good morning Good God,
You amaze me. You fill my head with thoughts of you even as I sleep. You send synaptic communication. You are in every cell of my being. And of course, you are in every other cell and molecule of creation. You add a drop of yourself, your energy, your love. I adore you. I worship you.

Faithful Foundation, Gracious Grantor,
Many spring to mind, as I think of those ‘standing in the need of prayer’. My friend, Amy, who was so sick last spring is stricken with pneumonia. It’s so hard for her to avoid illness with that nasty lupus. Heal her, Lord, and send a cure for lupus! There are infants who have congenital issues and babies with little bodies that don’t serve them.  There are parents who need to know about Baby Safe Haven laws to avoid abandoning their infants unlawfully.  Make them all whole. There is evil to be overcome; I see it in selfishness of individuals and countries – greed fills the gaping holes people have that wouldn’t exist if they would allow themselves to be filled with your love. Be with Laura’s father as he struggles with lung cancer and the unfortunate side effects from testing agents. Imbue him with your strength and love, fill him with your energy of healing. Soften Steve and remove his anxiety over money. Fill him with hopeful energy. Remind him to relax when he’s not in control of circumstances and needs to be patient.

ring-heart

Give my friend, Melissa (with such a similar name) a wonderful 10th anniversary cruise – ensure she at least avoids pain with her ear/sinus infection, keep her safe and let her bask in the love of her husband.

Incredible Imagineer,

Thank you for Thea and her health. Thank you for Nancy to advocate for me in my battles — and succeeding when I would have given up. Thank you for the promise of plans for my welfare, not destruction. Thank you for bringing me and so many others through troubled times. Thank you for reminders to avoid pride, for only you are the potency; I am but the vessel to be filled with it (filled to overflowing, I might add!). Thank you for friends who show me your support and enfold me in love and peace. God, I love you so much!

In Jesus’ name,
Amen.

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!

Again today, I think of my friend and pray for her.

Holy, Holy, Holy,

Lord God almighty, I praise your creation.  I don’t understand massacres nor your reason for leaving me in my current position.  Your creation of angels, like Susan, is a glorious mystery to me.  You send her to love me, to inspire me, to give me strength, to give me glimpses of you.  Amazing!

God Almighty,

I pray today for Susan and Sarah.  Grant them your grace to be together and enjoy one another.  Let Susan be a loving mother for Sarah and let Sarah be an adult who can care for herself and others.  Let them care for one another as they each would for a small helpless infant who turned out to be the Prince of Peace.

SONY DSC

Bless Steve and let him know how much I love him and how much I appreciate him.  I pray for your world.  Stop the hating by filling us all with your love.  Stop the killing by reminding us all of the gift of life that you gave us in Jesus, so many years ago.

Incredible Imagineer,

You gave us all things possible and impossible.  May my gratitude show like a beacon of your light, life and laughter.  I love you so much.

beacon

Through Jesus, I pray

Amen.

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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