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A Daybook of Prayer: Meditations, Scriptures, and Prayers to Draw Near to the Heart of God

A Daybook of Prayer: Meditations, Scriptures, and Prayers to Draw Near to the Heart of God

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A Daybook of Prayer: Meditations, Scriptures, and Prayers to Draw Near to the Heart of God

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9 Stunden
Oct 7, 2007


Readers are challenged with the simple but profound question: What would happen-how would your life be different-if you committed the next year to learning about prayer and devoting time to prayer every single day? A Daybook on Prayer weaves together poignant meditations from classic and contemporary Christian writers with powerful Bible verses, directed prayers, and personal prayer-starters, to create a life-changing resource for those who want to draw closer to the heart of God. The daily selections are drawn from many of the greatest historical and modern teachers on the subject of prayer, including Augustine, Thomas À Kempis, Martin Luther, Brother Andrew, John Wesley, A.W. Tozer, Andrew Murray, Oswald Chambers, Billy Graham, Charles Swindoll, Max Lucado, and many others.
Oct 7, 2007

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A Daybook of Prayer - Thomas Nelson



Meditations, Scriptures, and Prayers

to Draw Near to the Heart of God

© 2006 by Thomas Nelson

All rights reserved. No portion of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means—electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, scanning, or other—except for brief quotations in critical reviews or articles, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

Published in Nashville, Tennessee, by Thomas Nelson. Thomas Nelson is a trademark of Thomas Nelson, Inc.

Thomas Nelson, Inc. books may be purchased in bulk for educational, business, fund-raising, or sales promotional use. For information, please e-mail

Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations used in this book are from the Holy Bible, New International Version. © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked ASV are taken from the American Standard Version. © 1901 by Thomas Nelson & Sons and copyright © 1929 by International Council of Religious Education.

Scripture quotations marked CEV are taken from the Contemporary English Version, © 1991, 1992, 1995 by the American Bible Society. Used by permission.

Scripture quotations marked ESV are taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked GWT are taken from God’s Word. © 1997 by World Bible Publishing. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked KJV are taken from the Holy Bible, King James Version.

Scripture quotations marked NASB are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1977 by the Lockman Foundation. All rights reserved.

Scriptures marked NCV are quoted from The Holy Bible, New Century Version, © 1987, 1988, 1991 by Word Publishing, Dallas, Texas 75039. Used by permission.

Scripture quotations marked NEB are taken from THE NEW ENGLISH BIBLE. Copyright © 1961, 1970 by The Delegates of the Oxford University Press and the Syndics of the Cambridge University Press. Reprinted by permission.

Scripture quotations marked NKJV are taken from the Holy Bible, New King James Version, © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, © 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked PHILLIPS are taken from the New Testament in Modern English, (Rev. Ed.) by J. B. Phillips. © 1958, 1960, 1972 by J. B. Phillips. Reprinted by permission of Macmillan Publishing Co., New York, New York.

Scripture quotations marked THE MESSAGE are taken from The Message: The Bible in Contemporary English. © 1993 by Eugene Peterson.

Verses marked TLB are taken from The Living Bible © 1971. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.

ISBN 978-1-5914-5476-2 (hardcover)

ISBN 978-0-8499-1897-1 (tradepaper)

Printed in the United States of America

07 08 09 10 11 RRD 6 5 4 3 2 1



Meditations, Scriptures, and Prayers

to Draw Near to the Heart of God



January 1

January 2

January 3

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October 1

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Scripture Index

Index of Authozrs



What would happen in your life if you committed time every single day of the year to learning something powerful and profound about prayer? And then spent time with God in prayer each day?

Prayer is your lifeline to the One who created you; who redeems you; who has plans and a purpose for your life; who desires a daily relationship based on trust and communication. God is ready to meet with you each and every day of the year, to hear what is on your heart and mind, to provide you with the reassurance, guidance, and wisdom you need to live the life He intends for you.

A Daybook of Prayer is a great resource that provides you with an inspirational Bible verse, a significant teaching on prayer from classic and contemporary Christian thinkers, and a poignant prayer starter for you to put into words your own petitions and praise before the Father.

What would happen if you devoted part of every day of the year to prayer? Your life—and your world—would never be the same.



Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

1 PETER 5:7

Tell God all that is in your heart, as one unloads one’s heart, its pleasures and its pains, to a dear friend. Tell Him your troubles, that He may comfort you; tell Him your joys, that He may sober them; tell Him your longings, that He may purify them; tell Him your dislikes, that He may help you to conquer them; talk to Him of your temptations, that He may shield you from them; show Him the wounds of your heart, that He may heal them; lay bare your indifference to good, your depraved tastes for evil, your instability. Tell Him how selflove makes you unjust to others, how vanity tempts you to be insincere, how pride disguises you to yourself and others….

People who have no secrets from each other never want for subject of conversation.… They talk out of the abundance of the heart, without consideration they say just what they think. Blessed are they who attain to such familiar, unreserved intercourse with God.


Heavenly Father, I want to share everything with You, both good and bad. Help me to open myself to Your loving Spirit. Amen.



The LORD has heard my plea;

the LORD will answer my prayer.


You can talk to God because God listens. Your voice matters in heaven. He takes you very seriously. When you enter his presence, he turns to you to hear your voice. No need to fear that you will be ignored. Even if you stammer or stumble, even if what you have to say impresses no one, it impresses God, and he listens. He listens to the painful plea of the elderly in the rest home. He listens to the gruff confession of a death-row inmate. When the alcoholic begs for mercy, when the spouse seeks guidance, when the businessman steps off the street into the chapel, God listens.

Intently. Carefully.

—MAX LUCADO, from The Great House of God

Lord God, thank You that You so attentively hear my prayers. Help me rest in Your love today, Lord. Amen.



If I ascend into heaven, You are there;

If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.


It’s easy to be honest before God with our hallelujahs; it is somewhat more difficult to be honest in our hurts; it is nearly impossible to be honest before God in the dark emotions of our hate. So we commonly suppress our negative emotions.… But when we pray the psalms, these classic prayers of God’s people, we find that will not do. We must pray who we actually are, not who we think we are, not who we think we should be.

In prayer, all is not sweetness and light. The way of prayer is not to cover our unlovely emotions so that they will appear respectable, but expose them so that they can be enlisted in the work of the kingdom.

—EUGENE H. PETERSON, from Answering God

O Lord, You see me as I am, You see my darkest moments, and You faithfully stay beside me. Help me turn even my darkest moments over to You. Amen.



But those who wait on the LORD will find new strength. They will fly high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.


I wonder how many wonderful gifts are left wrapped in heaven because they were never unwrapped on earth? They just remain there, unasked for. James wrote plainly, You do not have because you do not ask (James 4:2 [NKJV]). In other words, if we would ask more, we would have more.

But what about the times when we do ask? Sometimes the answer is yes, sometimes it’s no, and many times it’s wait.… Do you know what that’s doing to your Christian life? It’s building muscles of faith.

God says, I know what I’m doing. You can trust Me. And let me assure you. He is a good God, and you can trust Him whether He answers yes, no, or wait.

—CHARLES SWINDOLL, from Perfect Trust

Lord, I know that You know what’s best for me, and I know that You will never abandon me. Please help me see Your hand in my life today, and please use my circumstances to make me more like You. Amen.



All these faithful ones died without receiving what God had promised them, but they saw it all from a distance and welcomed the promises of God.


God knows exactly when to withhold or to grant us any visible sign of encouragement. How wonderful it is when we will trust Him in either case! Yet it is better when all visible evidence that He is remembering us is withheld. He wants us to realize that His Word—His promise of remembering us— is more real and dependable than any evidence our senses may reveal….

Delayed answers to prayers are not refusals. Many prayers are received and recorded, yet underneath are the words, My time has not yet come. God has a fixed time and an ordained purpose, and He who controls the limits of our lives also determines the time of our deliverance.

—L. B. COWMAN, from Streams in the Desert

Lord, I know that You have good plans for Your people, even when I can’t see You at work. Today, Lord, I pray for Your perspective and the ability to endure the time between with grace and perseverance. Amen.



Continue in prayer, and watch in

the same with thanksgiving.


What is prayer? Not the utterance of words. They are but the vehicle of prayer. Prayer is the attitude of a person’s spirit, and the elements of prayer may be diffused throughout our daily lives….

Our continual submission to God’s will is…essential for all prayer. Many people believe that praying is urging our wishes on God, and answered prayer is God giving us what we desire. The deepest expression of true prayer is not, Do this, because I desire it, O Lord. Rather, it is, I do this because you desire it, O Lord.

So there should run all through our daily lives the music of continual prayer beneath our various occupations, like some prolonged, deep, bass note that bears up and dignifies the lighter melody rising, falling, and changing above it. Then our lives can be woven into a harmonious unity based upon a continual communion, a continual desire after God, and a continual submission to Him.


Heavenly Father, I want to be willing and obedient to do the things You ask me to do. As I remain in continual prayer, I know You will help me to follow You. Amen.



Pay attention to my prayer,

for it comes from an honest heart.


Prayer is for every moment of our lives, not just for times of suffering or joy. Prayer is really a place; a place where you meet God in genuine conversation.

Have you ever said, Well, all we can do now is pray? Instead of beginning with prayer, we sometimes resort to it after all other resources have been used. When we come to the end of ourselves, we come to the beginning of God. We don’t need to be embarrassed that we are needy. God doesn’t demand that we pray in King James English, or even with eloquence. Every feeble, stumbling prayer uttered by a believer is heard by God. A cry, a sigh, a Help! are all prayers, according to the Psalms.

—BILLY GRAHAM, from Day by Day with Billy Graham

Father, I want to pray all day, directing every thought and sigh toward You. Help me see reminders of Your presence throughout the day, Lord. Amen.



Blessed are the pure in heart,

For they shall see God.


The Scriptures say, Pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17 KJV). This should be the motto of every true follower of Jesus. No matter how dark and hopeless a situation might seem, never stop praying. It’s not only to resolve our problems that we should pray, but to share in the strength of God’s friendship. For us, prayer should be not merely an act, but an attitude of life.

Do we pray for God’s will, or demand our own way? Prayer needs to be an integral part of our lives, so that when a crisis comes we have the strength and faith to pray for God’s will. Someone said that strength in prayer is better than length in prayer. However, Martin Luther said, I have so much to do today that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer.

—BILLY GRAHAM, from Day by Day with Billy Graham

Lord, I pray that You would create in me a pure heart. Please refresh my gratitude to You and teach me to trust You wholeheartedly. Amen.



Will he always call upon God?

JOB 27:10 KJV

The neglect of the duty of prayer seems to be inconsistent with supreme love to God, and is against the will of God so plainly revealed. Living in such a neglect is inconsistent with leading a holy life….

A holy life is a life of faith. The life that true Christians live in the world, they live by the faith of the Son of God. But who can believe that that man lives by faith who lives without prayer, which is the natural expression of faith? Prayer is as natural an expression of faith as breathing is of life; and to say that a man lives a life of faith and lives a prayerless life is every whit as inconsistent and incredible as to say that a man lives without breathing. A prayerless life is so far from being a holy life that it is a profane life. He who lives so lives like a heathen who does not call on God’s name. He who lives a prayerless life lives without God in the world.


Heavenly Father, I do not want to be someone who leads a prayerless life in this world. Help me to be always seeking You, living a life of faith and holiness. I want to take joy in spending time in Your presence, in worshiping You, and in living a life that is completely devoted to You. Amen.



I will lie down and sleep in peace,

for you alone, O LORD,

make me dwell in safety


Whatever we ask of God…

Whatever we voice in thanksgiving to God…

Whatever we declare to be the attributes of God…

We must offer with faith.

We must truly believe that when we ask of God, He answers.

We must truly believe that He is worthy of all our thanksgiving and praise.

We must truly believe that He is totally capable of handling all things according to the fullness of His plan and purpose for our life.


Lord God, today I just lay everything in Your hands. God, I’m anxious, but I believe in Your power and goodness, and I believe in your praiseworthiness. Thank You for Your love. Amen.



Now Simon’s mother-in-law was lying sick with a fever;

and immediately they spoke to Jesus about her.


Into Simon’s house illness had entered; fever in a deadly form had prostrated his mother-in-law; and as soon as Jesus came, they told Him of the sad affliction, and He hurried to the patient’s bed. Do you have any illness in the house this morning? You will find Jesus the best physician by far; go to Him at once and tell Him all about the matter. Immediately lay the case before Him. It concerns one of His people, and therefore He will not regard it as trivial. Notice that immediately the Savior restored the ill woman; none can heal as He does. We dare not assume that the Lord will remove all illness from those we love, but we dare not forget that believing prayer for the sick is far more likely to be followed by restoration than anything else in the world; and where this does not happen, we must meekly bow to His will by whom life and death are determined. The tender heart of Jesus waits to hear our griefs; let us pour them into His patient ear.


Lord Jesus, thank You for Your compassionate heart. I know You hear all of my prayers. Thank You for the healing of body and spirit that comes when I pray. Amen.




And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do,

that the Father may be glorified in the Son.


Intercession is very important. A little girl prayed for her friend till she also found the Lord Jesus as her Savior. Together they began to pray for a third girl. Then the three of them for a fourth and the four of them for a fifth—the chain reaction in the hearts of little children by intercession. Will you not ask the Lord to use you for this chain reaction—that this may begin in your heart and then continue? Pray for one, then together for a third, then the three of you for a fourth.

In 1 Timothy 2:1-2 [KJV] Paul says: I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; for kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.

I have experienced that nothing makes us as free as interceding for others.

What a heavy task! But how glorious!

—CORRIE TEN BOOM, from Not I, but Christ

Father, thank You for Your love for me and the world. Holy Spirit, please guide my prayers and lead my thoughts to those who need Your love. Amen.



May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.


Prayer is the strength of our individual and community existence. It is through prayer that we find the heart of our love relationship with Jesus as individuals, and it is through the love relationship of Jesus working in individual lives that communities prosper in peace and unity. It is in the solitude of prayer that we find our true Companion, and thus learn to be better companions of others. It is in the inner silence of prayer that we hear the living word of God, and thus learn to speak words that flow from the love of God to one another.

—JOHN MICHAEL TALBOT, from Regathering Power

Lord, I know that relationships are so important to You. God, please lead me close to You and teach me to love, so that I can show Your love to those around me. Amen.



Cast your burden on the Lord,

And He shall sustain you.


What prayer as asking presupposes is simply a personal—that is, an experientially interactive—relationship between us and God, just as with a request of child to parent or friend to friend. It assumes that our natural concerns will be naturally expressed, and that God will hear our prayers for ourselves as well as for others….

Accordingly, I believe the most adequate description of prayer is simply, Talking to God about what we are doing together.… Prayer is a matter of explicitly sharing with God my concerns about what he too is concerned about in my life.

—DALLAS WILLARD, from The Divine Conspiracy:

Rediscovering Our Hidden Life in God

Lord, help me remember today that my life is about You. Help me remember that You’re right here in the midst of everything that’s pressing for my attention. Help me remember that You want to live life with me. Amen.



I desire therefore that the men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and

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