by Jack Watts

MY PRAYER: Father,
In my pain and anguish,
When my heart was broken,
And I thought darkness would overwhelm me,
I felt lost and all alone, but I wasn’t.
Despite how I felt, You were there with me,
Diligently working in my heart—
Stripping me of all of my pretense,
Stripping me of all of my arrogance,
Stripping me of all of my self-serving ways—
Each of which has made my life a wasteland.
Although I am Your child, I had no awareness
Of the direction You intended for me to follow.
My only concern has been obtaining relief from pain,
But Your goals have been consistently greater than mine.
I thought my anguish would never end—
That I would never smile at the future—
But I was wrong about that, as well.
I expressed the self-serving desires of my heart
And asked You repeatedly to grant them,
But You never would, which grieved me deeply.
 
What I have gained through my loss, though,
Has had more value than I could have imagined.
Out of the abyss, You have raised me up.
You have placed my feet on solid, immovable rock.
You have strengthened me with power
In the inner man—at the core of my being.
No longer fearful or timid, I am resolute and confident.
Instead of being apprehensive, I remain calm and sane.
It is all because You have changed my heart—
Transforming my perspective about what has value.
Without Your loving, consistent care,
I would never have learned my lessons
And would have been destined to repeat my mistakes
Over and over again, like an unreasoning animal,
Rather than like a man—the child of a King.
Refusing to allow my life to be destroyed by dissipation,
You reached into the pit—into the quagmire—
Into the emotional carnage of my dysfunction
And redeemed me, providing me with a future
That is filled with hope and purpose,
Amen.

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