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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Isaiah 61:1-3

The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
       instead of ashes,
       the oil of gladness
       instead of mourning,
       and a garment of praise
       instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor” (Isaiah 61:1-3).

Lord, we pray for you to empower us to share your love, and to bring healing to broken hearts and tormented minds. Lord, use us for your glory.... to declare freedom to those who are are bound up in darkness of spiritual and emotional pain. You have called us to this purpose, and we yearn to be faithful. Today we speak life to everyone you bring into our path. We speak hope and faith and promise of release from the prison that has held their heart and mind in chains. This is their day of favor. Today is the day of victory. Chains fall off, and minds are covered by the sacrificial flow from Calvary. You are the provider of comfort for those who have mourned and been in tortured pain. You are the deliverer of those who grieve. Where once they have seen only death and ashes, now they will see the beauty of your healing presence. Joy will be their cry. Instead of the mourning of a broken heart, they will be alive in joyful praise. Praise will lift their spirit of despair. Praise will bring peace and joy. And, Lord Jesus, they will be planted as strong oaks with deep roots that anchor their blooming faith. Where once they could not weather the storms, now they stand sure and tall. Their anchor holds. Their lives will be a display of your power of healing and purpose. Use us, Lord, for this very purpose, and we are fulfilled in you.
In Jesus' name.

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