One green tea bag, a cinnamon stick, milk, and honey to taste. I take a deep breath and stare at the teapot I’d just filled. Since I have to be back at work in 45 minutes, I set the timer on my watch for 30 minutes. I pour myself a cup of tea and open my prayer journal. My heart is fixed on praying through Psalm 90. And yet, the phrase, “you’re not going to be everyone’s cup of tea,” came to mind. A friend spoke these matter-of-fact words after I’d shared my open wounds from the rejection, criticism, and betrayal I’d faced. She summed up three distinct blows in one sentence. Before my timer goes off, I’ve emptied the teapot, dried my tears, and written a prayer five pages long.
Pour It Out
This sentence from Lamentations 2:19 draws me in. Pouring out can make a huge mess, or it can be a beautiful sight. The ritual action of pouring out a cup of tea is a thing of beauty. But, my ugly cry before the Lord felt like a huge mess. In less than 30 minutes, the toxic clutter of thoughts plaguing my spirit poured out like water before the Lord.
Taking the time to handwrite my prayers is a therapeutic act for me. It helps to use scripture as the basis for my prayers. Sometimes I type them up and edit them to be shared with others. But most often, they remain private exchanges between God and me. And while I’m not ready to fully disclose all that I prayed that morning, I can say with certainty that our poured-out messes can be made beautiful in the presence of the Lord.
Take a scripture or two from your personal Bible reading and turn them into prayers. Write them down and re-read them as often as needed.
Almighty God, You alone are the Creator of all things and all people. You alone are God. LORD, listen closely to my heart, hear the cries of my soul, and the questions in my mind. LORD, may I take root downward and bear fruit upward by Your power and for Your glory. In Jesus’ precious, holy, and powerful name, I pray. Amen.