Tag Archives: come alongside

More About Mental Illness, Mental Wholeness

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Saturday, October 8, 2016


More About Mental Illness, Mental Wholeness

Tomorrow I am preaching about mental illness.

Some people are afraid of mental illness. There is a stigma about it. A fear, an anxiety. Let’s face it—we are afraid of what we do not understand. And, individuals who suffer from mental illness is something people so often shun, or exclude, or make fun of.

Jesus wouldn’t exclude these people.

Whether we are talking the first or the twenty-first century, we can praise God—Jesus has come to heal our diseases, to free us from our bondage. Whether from sin, from demons, from mental illnesses. Jesus knows our sorrows and carries our griefs. Jesus comes alongside of us—all of us—and helps us to bear our heavy loads.


Whether the load is physical or mental, psychological or spiritual, Jesus gives a helping hand. Jesus shows up. All of which suggests that God is willing to go absolutely anywhere to come alongside, to free, sustain and heal those who are broken and despairing.

Praise God. Thank You, Jesus.



Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my companion blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.  #PursuePEACE. My Facebook page, Pursuing Peace – Thanks! And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

Praying with the Gentle and Lowly

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Thursday, August 27, 2015

God greater than our problems

Praying with the Gentle and Lowly

Another night of Evening Prayer, another night of reading through these helpful phrases. Some directly biblical, and others not. As I read down the prayers and passages, I came across this, from Matthew 11:

“Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

I think Jesus is so good and loving and giving. Imagine, to be able to say to His audience that He will come alongside, He will pull with you—with me, and help us to bear the load. It doesn’t matter what our burden is, because Jesus is bearing it with us. Alongside of us.

What is a yoke? Since most people in my area don’t work closely with animals any longer, I dare say they are often a little fuzzy on the meaning. A yoke is similar to a large collar, fitted to the necks of the animals pulling the plough, or another piece of farm equipment. Usually quite heavy.

Whether we think of the yoke of the Pharisees—the self-righteous straightjacket of legalism the Pharisees impose—or any other kind of yoke that’s difficult to bear, we can exchange that damaging, discouraging yoke for Jesus’ one. He will give us the strength to continue, one day at a time.

Thank You, God. You are so awesome! Thank You for coming alongside of me and so many others. Help us be aware that You are pulling right there, with us. And sometimes, You even take the role of the stronger animal, the best at pulling the heavy burdens.


Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Visit the website http://dailyoffice.org/ to find out more about Morning and Evening Prayer!

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

Come Alongside, Come Together, Com-passion

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Sunday, July 5, 2015

compassion heart

Come Alongside, Come Together, Com-passion

Compassion. Coming alongside. Of course this word can be painful, occasionally a fizzle, and sometimes rewarding beyond all measure. Those particular times when it was particularly rewarding seem like “forever faithful,” to tell the truth.

I thought this word was perfect for this book Praying the New Testament as Psalms. When I think as someone whom God has gifted with this emotion, does it show too much? Sorry if it does.

One verse of this New Testament psalm echoed and re-echoed in my heart tonight: “God, You are compassionate and merciful./Make me Your mercy, Your compassions.” [1]

Lord, I know sometimes I am not mindful of how I treat people. Sometimes (even most of the time) I am selfish. Sometimes I do act in an unkind way. Lord, please forgive me.

Thank You for forgiving me, and allowing me free and generous access to Your mercy, and Your compassion. In Jesus’ dear name we pray, amen.


Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er .

[1] Praying the New Testament as Psalms, Desmond O’Donnell, OMI, and Maureen Mohen, RSM, (United States of America: ACTA Publications, 2002.), 46.

Soul Creation—Nourish the Soul

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Wednesday, June 24, 2015

SOUL beautiful soul

Soul Creation—Nourish the Soul

Another take on nourishing the Soul. Except, this way is expanding the Soul. This way is experiencing life, in every way. Matthew Fox suggests that “we must work on our souls, enlarging and expanding them. We do so by experiencing all of life—the beauty and the joy as well as the grief and pain.” [1]

This compilation, this book called Handbook for the Soul, offers a number of different aspects and attitudes towards expanding the inner workings of a person. And, with such a smorgasbord laid out for me, I can hardly choose. Perhaps, first one way on one day. Then, perhaps another way the next. And then, a third, and a fourth.

I could go on and on with these various approaches to nourishing and expanding the Soul. But I want to talk more about Fox’s way. He discusses soul work. How to do soul work? By experiencing life fully, deeply, in every way. In every facet.

Fox especially mentions silence and emptiness. Pain and suffering. Yes, sometimes there are great strides forward made at such times, in terms of soul work. In terms of strong emotion running rough shod all over a person, too.

The first thing I think of, when I read Fox’s suggestions, is why he said what he did.

When someone is presently going through some heavy emotion or deep, even raw feelings, sometimes it is wise to have someone to come alongside. Even though I may think I’m dealing with something manageable, things can always come up. Feelings, emotions, reactions, grief, sorrow, anger, grumbling, frustration. Joy, gratitude, relief. All kinds of feelings.

God willing, God will lead me to helpful prayers, nurturing exercises, and freeing meditation.


[1] Handbook for the Soul, Richard Carlson and Benjamin Shield, editors. (Boston: Little, Brown & Co., 1995.), 151.