Reblogged from: Daily Bread
By Stassi Cramm, Council of Twelve Apostles
Then [Jesus] said to him, “Get up and go on your way; your faith has made you well.”
On our kitchen counter is a small concrete set of hands, open to hold birdseed or candy. Next to the hands is a bowl of hand polished gemstones. When I receive prayer requests or when I have prayer concerns of my own, I go to the hands. I place a gemstone in the hands for each prayer I offer as I picture myself placing my prayer concerns in God’s hands.
Often I pick out a certain color gemstone that reminds me of the person I pray for. Each time the hands start to fill up, I move the gemstones back to the bowl, re-starting the cycle.
Recently as I was moving the gemstones back to the bowl, I realized that almost all of my prayers were intercessory prayers or prayers asking for God’s help. I was missing the opportunity to say thanks for God’s blessings. I am continuing to place my prayer concerns in God’s hands but now I offer thanksgiving prayers for God’s blessings as I move the gemstones from the hands back to the bowl. I have found that adding a focused action for thanksgiving prayers in addition to intercessory prayers has deepened my faith.
When Jesus healed the ten lepers only the Samaritan leper returned to thank Jesus. Jesus sent the Samaritan leper on his way affirming how the leper’s faith had made him well. My testimony is that when I go beyond asking for God’s help by also opening my eyes to see God’s blessings and give thanks, I experience a faith that makes me more whole. Try it: Open your eyes, look for God’s blessings, and give thanks!
Prayer for Peace Healing God, thank you for hearing our prayers. Thank you for holding us in your holy hands. Thank you for giving us Christ’s peace to share.
Spiritual Practice: Open Hands Stand or sit with your hands extended in front of you. Prayerfully ponder all that you hold in your hands that make you feel too full, busy, drained or tight. Spread your hands up and apart to release these burdens, then hold them open and empty them again. Thank God for relationships that fill and feed your spirit. Pray for a generous heart and open hands that reach out to make room for all in the circle of Christ’s community.
Peace Covenant Today, God, when I pray for your healing touch, I will thank you for your comfort.