The Upper Room Devotional 21 June 2022 | When Words Fail
Read and Meditate on Today’s The Upper Room Daily Devotional for Tuesday 21st June 2022, written by Kevin Horne. God bless you as you study!
THE UPPER ROOM DEVOTIONAL 21 JUNE 2022, TUESDAY
TODAY’S TOPIC: WHEN WORDS FAIL
Kevin Horne (Louisiana, USA)
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
I don’t always need words to pray.
The Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. – Romans 8:26 (NIV)
Just as the world was shutting down due to COVID-19, I learned that I had aggressive prostate cancer that required immediate surgery. Fear overwhelmed me. I wondered if I could even receive treatment in the midst of a pandemic. The prayers of friends lifted me, yet my own praying was, in the words of Franciscan Richard Rohr, both “constant and impossible.”
In late afternoons during my days of waiting, I walked by the river and along tree-lined streets near my home. I babbled my prayers but soon ran out of words. Finally, I prayed, “Father, I have no more words. Please let my steps be prayers and my breath be praise.” I remembered how Paul wrote that the Spirit prays with us and for us when we can manage only groans and sighs. My anxiety did not disappear; but I began to see beyond it as I walked and breathed. My mind became calm as it no longer grasped for words. I began to see and hear the birds along the river. I noticed the sunlight through the trees. I saw other people walking — no doubt bearing burdens of their own.
Eventually, I had successful surgery, and I give thanks for caring doctors, nurses, and other dedicated healthcare workers. Most of all I give thanks for God’s Spirit that sustains. And I continue to pray — sometimes with words.
O God, you know our needs before we ask. Hear us when we pray with words and without them. Amen.
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