A Spiritual Workout

Sunday, March 10, 2019
Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Blessed Assurance"1 (Lyrics)

1 Timothy 2:1 – So, then, this is my very first command: God's people should make petitions, prayers, intercessions and thanksgivings on behalf of all people. (NTE)

1 Peter 3:12a – For the Lord is watching his children, listening to their prayers. (TLB)

A beefy guy with a buzz cut has a half-smoked cigarette behind his ear. Sitting next to him is a kid with a nose ring and eye makeup, wearing a black hat that says, "On my way to hell!" Those of various faiths board, in turbans and hijabs. Two elderly sisters sit side by side, with missing front teeth, checking their lottery tickets in silence. The late morning bus offers up the individuals God has selected to people my prayers today.

Consider all the things for which we can be thankful. Waiting for the bus to come on a cold winter day gives us opportunity for patience, which, they say, always hitches a ride with understanding. Having a warm coat, hat, and gloves also reminds us to be grateful. Then, there's the joy that a bus service even exists, let alone that it goes anywhere near our destinations. Most of all, since we share the ride with some of the neediest people in town, we have been given this time together to pray for them. If we had a car, we'd be missing out on this blessing that provides us with yet another opportunity to learn and grow spiritually.

Someone once said that our real purpose in life is to fit ourselves to be of maximum service to God and those around us. Spiritual fitness comes when we see encounters with others as being sent from God to keep our souls as fit as our bodies. Trials and troubles are actually bright, shiny, spiritual exercise equipment, transforming our frail faith into channels useful to God — all for free!

Back to the bus where a tired young mother gets on with a baby in a stroller. An old man across the aisle makes a paper airplane out of his transfer and gives it to the baby, who promptly eats it while its distracted mother is not looking. Yet another opportunity for prayer.

James 5:16 – Pray for one another, so that you will be healed. The prayer of a good person has a powerful effect. (GNT)

Romans 12:12 – As regards hope, rejoicing: as regards tribulation, enduring: as regards prayer, persevering. (Darby)

Prayer: Dear God, who always answers prayer, who puts us in just the right place to see the needs of those with whom You have allowed us to ride today, we thank You that Your love extends to all Your children, at all times and in all situations. Thank You for constantly providing the circumstances for us to grow and change spiritually as we accept what You have given us today as from a loving Father's hand. Thank You for honouring us by allowing us to do Your will today. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

Rose DeShaw <rise370@gmail.com>
Kingston, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    A great reminder, Rose.

    Opportunities never cease. God love you!

    Rose, this passage too… Philippians 4:13…Blessings.

    Thanks for the great reminder and God bless you, Rose!

    Amen Rose. Keep praying.

    Thanks for a good and true word today Cheryl.

    Thank you, Rose. This is a great encouragement and example of how we can pray through our day.

    Dear Rose,
    Thank you so much for these helpful thoughts.

    Having been a bus rider for many years I know exactly what you are talking about.
    Bless you for your actions.

    Thank you Rose, makes us see the good we have and the need around us that others have and that we should always pray. God is love.

    Thank you for showing me the attitude of gratitude today. I needed that.
    Thank you for writing down all these opportunities in today’s devotional. Thank you!

    Rose, thank you for sharing this devotional with us. Praying for all who are floundering amid the many choices this world provides…even on a bus ride.

    I sensed this was a note from you Rose as I recognized your concern for others after having driven by for so many years. it reminds us certainly to be thankful for daily gifts we take for granted! Have a blessed day!

    Oh Rose,
    How I liked this devotional today! It touched me deeply to see your heart of God at work. I thank and praise God that I do have an automobile, and as I’m driving or riding along, I see, like you, the people who are in my sight with needs I too can offer up prayer for. Thank you for touching and softening our hearts to be aware and alert to the opportunities of the need for prayer for all those around us. God bless you.

    Hello Rose,
    Yes, when we look around us and see what others are suffering, we must be thankful for all that we have and pray for those that are in need of comfort and various provisions. Our willingness to help at food banks and fund raisers is a way to carry out the Lord’s work and bring answer to prayer.
    Thank you for writing this devotional.

    Good morning Rose,
    What a beautiful tableau you painted for us today Rose. I could easily visualize the bus occupants. When I took the bus to work, I remember wondering what each person was thinking about during their bus rides, but this was before they talked on their cell phones and annoyed everyone who did not really want to hear the nonsense they were sharing with us all!
    Thank you for reminding us that we should pray for others as well as for ourselves.

    Dear Rose,
    Thank you for writing with compassion for the neediest people you encounter.
    I pray that you will find ways to help these folks.
    Praying for God’s blessings and guidance in your concern for helping people to know God’s salvation, goodness, and grace.

    Hi Rose,
    There are indeed many people on our road of life for whom we could or should pray, but at times I find it so overwhelming. There are so many strange things going on in the world and so many different attitudes as well.
    Thank you for pointing out that we should be more observant as to the people around us.

    Dear Rose,
    How I wish when I read your Devotions, that they would not end. I just want to keep reading!
    I believe nothing in life is by chance – even those who cross our path.
    May we not miss any opportunity to pray and point others to Christ.
    We are only here for so long – and for such a time as this! God bless you sweet Rose.

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