Thankful & Thirsty Thursdays

Day 5 in “Days of the Week Prayer”

Psalm 107:8-9 Let them praise the Lord for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them. For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.

The impressive red-tail hawk perched majestically atop the streetlight illuminating the entrance to the freeway. Skies behind me were changing from the pink hues of sunrise to the bright light of morning. It was going to be a long day. The first day of school and a classroom full of anxious students awaited me. As I sat there, impatiently anticipating my turn to get going, that hawk sat perfectly still and gazed down, seeming to stare right at me. In reality, he was probably staring at a rodent that would soon be his breakfast, but this hawk became a symbol of God’s faithfulness to me. 

Every morning, for years, I would see that hawk sitting on the light post, and he would remind me that God is always watching. He knows and anticipates my needs. He knows when I rise up and when I lie down. He knows when my heart is aching and when it is rejoicing. He is the God who sees, El Roi. He is the God who hears, Psalm 17:6, I Peter 3:12.  This magnificent hawk reminded me that God cares about the tiny sparrow, and how much more He cares about me. Matthew 6:26-27. Since then, God has sent countless birds into my yard and along my path to remind me how much He loves me and how much I have to be thankful for. What is your reminder to be thankful?

God gave us His creation as a gift so that we can know Him better. For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God. Romans 1:20 I want to have a thankful heart every moment of every day, and little glimpses of God, through His creation, are reminders to be grateful throughout. 

Most of my prayers begin with thanksgiving for His death and resurrection and His love for me. However, I like to take time in my prayer life to express gratitude for very specific blessings and trials in my life. I often try to put a Name of God with the prayer adding to my meditation on His provision. 

Every day is a good day to be thankful, but Thursdays are the days that I make that the focus of my prayers. Often with my prayer of thanksgiving, there is a thirst attached to it. I love a good cup of coffee in the morning, especially when my husband brings it to me in bed. It isn’t long before I say, “That was really good coffee, may I have some more.” The Lord’s teachings in the Beatitudes tell us that “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled.” More than coffee, I long to be filled with righteousness. I desire to have a river of life flowing into me so that I can be a refreshment to everyone I encounter.

 I am going to be a bit transparent here and share a little clip of my prayer list with you. 

Psalms 103: 1-5 Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name.Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me. He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies. He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle’s!

  • Thank you for loving me and dying on the cross and rising again to save me. 
  • Thank you for forgiving me for all of my sins and blunders!
  • Thank you for being an awesome God, for knowing what we need, for having a plan for us, for drawing our children to you – Jehovah Jireh (provider)
  • Thank you for providing for our daily needs and finances.
  • Help us to be good stewards the gifts you have given us.  
  • Thank you for my home, family, release from anxiety – Jehovah Shalom (peace)
  • Thank you for the trials and help me to learn the lessons you have for me. Help me to be obedient to your word and will. Help me to know what your will is. El Rohi (Shepherd) Help me to remember your purpose for me – to bring you honor. Bring the things to my mind that I need forgiveness for.
  • Please transform me and renew my mind. Teach me to walk in and by your spirit.
  • Thank you for the friends that you have put in my life to encourage me. 
  • Protect me from the attacks of the enemy, Jehovah Nissi (He is my banner raised in battle. He is ever present.)
  • Help me to love with the unconditional love that can only come from You.  

A scripture can speak our prayers beautifully. I love praying scripture. But I think God wants to hear our prayers in our own human and fallible voices. He wants to hear the praise and cries from our hearts. Psalm 107: 8-9 Let them praise the Lord for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them. For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.

Who are the thirsty in your life? At times, I feel like my soul is withered up and parched. I need the refreshing water of the Holy Spirit to wash over and through me. I think it is important to be filled with that refreshing water myself before I can anticipate pouring into the lives of the other thirsty travelers the Lord brings my way. So, I ask the Lord to fill my heart with His peace, His song, His strength, His spirit.

A variety of people show up on my prayer list in several places, Ministry Mondays, Family & Friends Fridays, and then there are those who also show up on Thirsty Thursday. These are the broken and weary who are in need of rest. They are in my prayer hospital’s intensive care unit. 

My dear friend Marie is here often. She has endured a lifetime of medical issues, starting with Lupus at age sixteen. As I write this, she is undergoing extensive medical work ups, preparing for another kidney transplant. Her faith has never wavered throughout the constant barrage of fiery darts the enemy has shot her way, but her well is drained. She has joy in knowing the Lord has a purpose for all of this, but she is worn down. She is soul weary and needs the refreshment of God’s healing waters. 

Some dear souls have not found their way to the Water yet. Some are in search of the Water; some don’t even know they are thirsty. I pray for those who need Jesus to know that He will satisfy their need for the transforming flood of grace and mercy

For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. John 1:17

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God Ephesians 2:8

I think of others who are plagued with the loneliness and fear that has overwhelmed our country in the wake of the COVID rule and political unrest. I think of my daughter, an ICU nurse who lays it all on the line as she is faced with burden of people who are extremely sick and dying daily. I think of dear friends and family members whose families are breaking into pieces. These are the thirsty. 

Fortunately, God has invited all who are thirsty to come to His streams of living water and be refreshed. “Is anyone thirsty? Come and drink…” Isaiah 55:1a

Today, I pray this for you. I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.  Romans 15:13

Published by Keri Willis

My name is Keri Willis. I am a semi-retired educator. I spent a great deal of my career working with adults with developmental disabilities and many years in elementary education, in the classroom and as an administrator. My main ministry now is coordinating the women’s ministry for our church in San Diego, CA. I have been married thirty-four years and have two grown and married children. I now have a head of full grey hair and good ideas. I believe we are created to use our gifts and to be creative. That comes in many forms for me. I love to woodwork and use power tools, design, decorate, garden, and create new recipes. And I love to write. One major lesson I have learned in my writing journey is that I need to be still and listen to hear God’s voice before I am prepared to put into words the message he has instilled in my heart. This has been much easier since I am no longer working full time, but it is so easy to get distracted and not listen, which almost always ends with an empty page in the form of writer’s block. While I have written many articles for newsletters and local newspapers, I did not consider myself a writer until I self-published my first book, Teapots and Power Tools. The idea emerged as I was working on a project in my garage. I had worship music playing, power tools out and saw dust flying. I glanced up and saw my delicate teapot sitting on my router table. The message was clear. Sometimes we are using the power tools God gives us and sometimes he just wants us to be still and have tea with him. The book became the foundation for a women’s retreat, and then my amazing niece helped me work through publishing it on Create Space (now KDP). At least five other projects are in different stages of production. I joined hope*writers to help motivate me and keep me focused and accountable. I am still trying to figure out the whole website and blog thing. That is my next goal for myself; that and finish writing at least one of my projects! Teapots and Power Tools: Effectively using the tools God has equipped you with, while taking time to “Be Still and Know That He is God”

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