Endurance for the Journey, Featured, Prayer

Don’t worry about anything;
instead, pray about everything.
Tell God what you need,
and thank Him for all He has done.

I’ve just realized as I’ve sat here trying to write about prayer, that I have no business trying to write on this subject. How many of you have struggled with prayer like I have? I would have to say that over the past 40 years of walking with Jesus that prayer has been the most difficult area of my spiritual journey.

Thankfully, I have discovered that the more time I spend with God in His Word the more time I spend with Him in prayer. As He talks with me through His Word, I desire to talk with Him about His Word. It’s hard to explain but it ends up being some of the most precious times I have with Him! For me, reading God’s Word and prayer go hand in hand.

Listening is another challenge for me and sitting still for any length of time is a challenge so you can imagine how hard it is for me to sit still and listen to God! But in those moments when I do, oh how sweet it is! When you pause long enough to sense the Holy Spirit impressing something on your heart it is truly a beautiful, transformational experience.

I now love to talk with God throughout the day. So much of what I see and observe around me causes me to be in awe of our creator! When I find myself on a hike and I pause to take in the beauty, I’m overwhelmed by the Creator of it all! When I listen to music or read an amazing book, I’m in awe of the ONE who gifted those people with the talent to do those things. I always pause now and thank Him for the gift!

I also now, find myself being aware of His presence whenever I am in the shower, throughout the day, in my chair, with others, wherever it might be, I experience the gentleness and the humbleness of the One who loves me more than I can comprehend and longs for these moments with me! I long for those moments more and more with each passing day! SO, PRAY, IT’S LIFE CHANGING AND LIFE GIVING!

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions
with all kinds of prayers and requests.
With this in mind, be alert and
always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit,
whom the Father will send in my name,
will teach you all things and
will remind you of everything I have said to you.
JOHN 14:26 (NIV)

And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness,
for example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for.
But the Holy Spirit prays for us
with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
ROMANS 12:12 (NIV)

On the journey with you,
Dave Dravecky


Endurance for the Journey, Featured, Prayer

Dear Lord,

Help me to see that you are sovereign over the circumstances of my life, even over suffering that seems impossible to understand. Help me to see that suffering as a sacrament, something that can be a means of grace, drawing me closer to you, and you closer to me.

Grant me the honesty to ask heartfelt questions. Grant me also the humility to realize that what I need isn’t so much an answer but an embrace.

Embrace me, O God. Please. Lift me from the ash heap and gather me in your loving arms. Hold me close. Wipe my tears. And make me whole … Eugene Peterson

My thoughts …
I think it is about taking a pause and see that no matter what it is that’s going on in our lives or around us, never forget we ultimately desire for God to hold us close in His Loving Arms.

Our Master Jesus has His arms wide open for you.
And I love all of you in the Messiah, in Jesus.

On the journey with you,
Dave Dravecky


Endurance for the Journey, Featured, Prayer

But I call to God,
and the Lord saves me.
Evening, morning and noon
I cry out in destress,
and he hears my voice.
PSALM 55:16-17 (NIV)

It’s hard for many of us to pray when things aren’t going so well. Sometimes we say to ourselves, “Well, what good does prayer do anyway? I’ve been praying, and things aren’t getting any better. I just don’t have the energy to do this anymore.”

King David encountered as many difficulties as we do, and yet he determined that he would not give up the one thing that gave him hope. “Evening, morning and noon I cry out in distress,” he admits, “and [God] hears my voice.” (v. 17)

David refused to give up his lifeline. He continued to pour out his heart, whether he saw any immediate improvement in his circumstances or not. He didn’t pray just once. He didn’t wait until Sunday. He didn’t give up. Like a hurt child tugging on his mother’s apron, he knew that God would respond because he knew God’s loving heart. He is an Old Testament example of Jesus’ instruction that we “should always pray and not give up” (Luke 18:1)

Rejoice in our confident hope.
Be patient in trouble,
and keep on praying.
ROMANS 12:12 (NLT)

On the journey with you,
Jan & Dave Dravecky


Endurance for the Journey, Featured, Prayer

Give thanks to the Lord,
call on his name;
make known among the nations
what he has done.

When God invites us to call on His name, we should never be at a loss as to which name to use. I call the Lord my Shepherd and Friend during those times when God’s tenderness melts my heart and I cry to think how rich and full His love is.

Then there are times when I’m battling pride or wasting hours in daydreams. That’s when God’s Word slices through my sinfulness. It stings. His hand seems heavy. That’s when I call the Lord my Refiner, my Purifier.

There are times when I feel helpless and frightened, when no one, not even my husband or best friend seems to understand. Then I hide under the shelter of His wings. I snuggle safely in the cleft of the Rock. These are times when I call God my Tower, my High Fortress.

When it comes to God one name just isn’t enough. And because Scripture is full of different names for Him, we can always know exactly how to relate to our Lord, whether we fall to our knees in awesome respect or climb up in his lap to be held in His arms.

Joni Eareckson Tada

The Lord is my rock,
my fortress, and my savior;
my God is my rock,
in whom I find protection.
He is my shield,
the power that saves me,
and my place of safety.
PSALM 18:2 (NLT)

On the journey with you,
Jan & Dave Dravecky


Endurance for the Journey, Featured, Prayer

The wife of a man from the company of the prophets
cried out to Elisha,
“Your servant my husband is dead,
and you know that he revered the Lord.
But now his creditor is coming
to take my two boys as his slaves.”
2 KINGS 4:1 (NIV)

When I first heard my diagnosis, my prayer life changed. Sure, I had prayed before but that moment marked a new experience and understanding of prayer. I now began to pray with desperation.

I have since discovered that my experience is not unique. Desperate people through the ages have cried out to God for help in their time of deepest need. The psalmist David certainly did and I knew another “David” who also did. My former pastor, David Jeremiah, wrote about it in his book Prayer, the Great Adventure. He writes: “I learned to pray out of desperation. For most of us, this is how the adventure usually begins. When we finally get serious about prayer, the trigger is usually desperation, not duty. We don’t pray because we ought; we pray because we are without any other recourse.”

The truth is, we always need God desperately, not just in times of life crisis. We may not always feel ourselves in such dire straits that we need God to rescue us, but we are always needy. Having a relationship with God is vital to human life.

From the depths of despair, O Lord,
I call for your help.
PSALM 130:1 (NLT)

In my desperation I prayed, and the Lord listened;
He saved me from all my troubles.
PSALM 34:6 (NLT)

On the journey with you,
Dave Dravecky



I urge you, first of all,
to pray for all people.
Ask God to help them;
Intercede on their behalf,
and give thanks for them.

When those we love are suffering, we often feel helpless and wish we could do more to help. The good news is, we can. We can pray.

Prayers for a suffering friend are an incredible gift of love. Illness and its accompanying exhaustion, mind-fogging medications and weariness of soul can make it difficult for those who suffer to pray for themselves. What a great encouragement it is to know that someone is praying for your needs when you are incapable of praying for yourself!

Those who suffer can oftentimes sense when others are praying for them. Just knowing that someone else is praying sends a powerful message of love, concern and sacrifice. And best of all, when we pray for someone, we have lifted up their needs to the One who can best meet them … and who can give us His peace in the process.

The Lord hears His people
when they call to Him for help.
He rescues them from all their troubles.
PSALM 34:17 (NLT)

On the journey with you,
Dave Dravecky


Grief, Prayer, Words of Endurance

Then he prayed, “Oh Lord,
God of my master Abraham,
Give me success today,
and show kindness to my master Abraham.

We tend to think that prayer should come easily to us, and many times it does. But prayer in the face of suffering can be a different story.

We are often surprised when prayer becomes difficult, when it seems fruitless, when the needs of the moment are so overwhelming that we don’t know where to begin. During these times it’s easy to lose confidence in our ability to pray or in God’s willingness to respond.

The truth is, prayer can be extremely hard work. Oswald Chambers describes it as “not a preparation for work, it is work. Prayer is not a preparation for the battle, it is the battle.”

And that about wraps it up.
God is strong, and he wants you strong.
So take everything the Master has set out for you,
well-made weapons of the best materials…
God’s Word is an indispensable weapon.
In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare.
Pray hard and long.



Grief, Prayer, Words of Endurance

God heard the boy crying,
and the angel of the Lord called to Hagar
from heaven and said to her,
“What is the matter Hagar? Do not be afraid;
God has heard the boy crying as he lies there.
Lift the boy up and take him by the hand,
for I will make his into a great nation.”
GENESIS 21:17-18 (NIV)

“Lord, thanks for putting the warning sign up there that tells us we will suffer, that suffering is a part of life in this fallen world. But thanks also for allowing us – for allowing me – the freedom to express my fears about the future. For only when I do so am I able to realize my dependence upon the One who understands my suffering better than anyone. Because he did not lose heart when He suffered, I, too, can find the strength to live courageously in my own difficult circumstances. Amen!”

And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.
We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus,
the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.
Because of the joy awaiting him,
He endured the cross, disregarding its shame.
Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.
Think of all the hostility he endured from sinful people;
then you won’t become weary and give up.
HEBREWS 12:1-3 (NLT)



On the Journey Together, Pain, Prayer, Words of Endurance

And we are confident that he hears us
whenever we ask for anything that pleases him.
1 JOHN 5:14 (NLT)

I have not always been confident in my prayers. There have been many dark seasons of my life where I felt like there was a concrete ceiling between God and me. During those dark sleepless nights my heartfelt, desperate prayers just seemed to bounce back – unanswered – to my waiting and then disappointed heart.

But during this last season of darkness, when I would wake up in the middle of the night in desperation, I found myself not having any words to express my pain. All I could do was groan because I did not know how to or what to pray for – I just knew that I wanted deliverance. But I learned that God heard my prayers despite my inability to express my prayers in words.

And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness.
For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for.
But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings
that cannot be expressed in words.
ROMANS 8:26-27 (NLT)

So I started praying without words – praying with my tears and my painful groans (I was glad that no one could hear but Him). I trusted Him at His Word.

I trusted that my prayers did not rely on me but on the Holy Spirit within me to pray. Knowing that my prayers were heard – not because of me but because of the Helper within me – I could trust that all my prayers would be heard.

We are confident of all this because of
our great trust in God through Christ.



Depression, Grief, Healing, On the Journey Together, Prayer, Words of Endurance

Listen, God! Please pay attention!
Can you make sense of these ramblings,
my groans and cries?
King-God, I need your help.

I have struggled off and on with depression all of my adult life. For years now I have pleaded with God to remove this “thorn in my flesh.” But after years of counseling and many attempts to get off my antidepressant I had resigned myself to the fact that this was the way I was wired and it was a burden that I would forever bear till I meet Jesus on the other side.

I thought I could maintain status quo and get by but my issues have worsened over the years. I have always known that I was a flaming people-pleasing codependent but I did not realize how that had eroded me spiritually, physically and emotionally. It has reared its ugly head in my relationship with God and family – leaving me empty inside – not knowing who I truly was – causing me to turn to addiction to numb my pain – not God.

What I am so elated over is that God has not left me here in my state of despair. While I am still in the midst of my healing and discovery I now know that He who began a good work in me will see it to the day of completion. (Philippians 1:6) For the first time in a long time my hope has been restored.

He has heard my prayer and blessed me with a wonderful, understanding and patient husband, an insightful and wise counselor and wonderful supportive friends. Another layer of the onion is being peeled and hopefully the root of codependency is being pulled out – I am still in the process – the process is painful but it is worth it. I now pray …

Investigate my life, O God,
find out everything about me;
Cross-examine and test me,
get a clear picture of what I’m about;
See for yourself whether I’ve done anything wrong –
then guide me on the road to eternal life.
Psalm 139:23-24 (THE MESSAGE)

On The Journey With You,
Jan Dravecky