Dear Jesus

Thank Me for the gift of My Peace: a gift of such immense proportions that you cannot fathom its depth or breadth.

Dear Jesus,

I have searched for Peace in many different places, but only Yours is real and enduring. Wonderful as Your Peace is, it often eludes me. When I let down my guard, anxiety creeps in without my permission. It tugs at the corners of my mind, drawing me away from awareness of You. Please teach me how to enjoy Your Peace more continually.

Beloved, you can thank Me for the gift of My Peace even when you’re feeling anxious. My Peace is not so much a feeling as it is an unchangeable condition. It is permanent forgiveness: My eternal gift to you through My blood. I am not only the Giver of true Peace; I Myself am your Peace. It is every bit as available to you as I am. When you seek My Presence and find Me, you also encounter My Peace.

Thanking Me for the gift of My Peace, regardless of how you feel, is ultimately an act of trust. Your gratitude and trust will draw you closer to Me—the Lord of Peace. Rejoice as you explore with Me the immense proportions of My gift: Peace at all times and in every way!

For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

[Colossians 1:19–20]

For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility.

[Ephesians 2:14]

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

[1 Peter 5:7]

Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you.

[2 Thessalonians 3:16]

Dear Jesus

Marvel at the awesome wonder of being able to commune with the King of the universe any time, any place. Never take this amazing privilege for granted!

Dear Jesus,

I confess that often I do take this awesome prayer-privilege for granted. Even worse, at times I act as if I’m doing You a favor by spending time talking with You. Forgive me for my foolish arrogance!

Beloved, I am pleased that you recognize and repent of your foolishness. The best antidote to such thoughts is remembering who I Am: King of kings and Lord of lords, dwelling in dazzlingly unapproachable Light.

My eyes are like blazing fire. My voice is like the sound of rushing waters. My face is like the sun shining in all its brilliance. I am also your Shepherd, tenderly leading you step by step through your life. I want you to realize how precious you are to Me—how much I delight in you. I long for you to reciprocate by delighting in Me.

I listen to your heart as well as to your words. When you approach My throne of grace joyfully, anticipating the wondrous pleasure of communing with Me, both you and I are blessed!

God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To him be honor and might forever. Amen.

[1 Timothy 6:15–16]

His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters. In his right hand he held seven stars, and out of his mouth came a sharp double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance.

[Revelation 1:14–16]

His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters. In his right hand he held seven stars, and out of his mouth came a sharp double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance.
[Revelation 1:14–16]

Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
[Hebrews 4:16]

Dear Jesus

Nothing is wasted when you walk close to Me. Even your mistakes can be recycled into something good, through My transforming grace.

Dear Jesus,

I desperately want to believe that my mistakes can somehow be used for good in Your kingdom. The truth is, I hate making mistakes! This attitude can easily translate into hating myself for having messed up. When I let my mind run freely at such a time, I find myself fantasizing about what might have been—if only I had acted or chosen differently. I definitely need a strong dose of Your transforming grace!

Beloved, the best strategy for accepting yourself, even when you make mistakes, is living close to Me. This nearness helps you see things from My perspective. You tend to view yourself as someone who should be almost perfect, making very few errors. My perspective is quite different: I see you as My beloved child—weak in many ways, prone to wandering from Me. However, your weakness and waywardness cannot diminish My constant Love for you. Moreover, My infinite wisdom enables Me to take your errors and weave them into an intricate work that is good.

You need to accept not only yourself but also the choices you have made. Fantasizing about having done things differently is a time-wasting trap. It is impossible to live close to Me while you’re indulging in such unreality. The more you fantasize, the further from Me you wander. When you realize this has happened, turn around and run back to Me! Take time to talk with Me and relax in My Presence. Your perfectionist tendencies will dissolve as you soak in My transforming grace.

As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him; for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust.

[Psalm 103:13–14]

May your unfailing love be my comfort, according to your promise to your servant.

[Psalm 119:76]

In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.

[Ephesians 1:7–8]

Dear Jesus

Invite Me into your thoughts by whispering My Name. Suddenly your day brightens and feels more user-friendly.

Dear Jesus,

When I speak Your Name in loving trust, I sense Your Presence and feel myself drawing closer to You. There is great Power in Your Name: I’ve found that simply whispering “Jesus” can turn a hard day into a good one. By calling upon Your Name frequently, I acknowledge my continual need of You.

Beloved, when you pray My Name, you are actually calling upon Me: My very Being. I joyfully respond to your invitation by coming nearer to you.

I am pleased by your desire to rely on Me in your small moments, as well as in the big events of your life. When you whisper My Name, I respond not only to your neediness but also to your love. As you look to Me, My Face shines upon you in radiant approval—brightening your day and helping you feel secure.

Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.

[Acts 4:12]

Come near to God and he will come near to you.

[James 4:8]

And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.

[Acts 2:21]

The Lord make His face to shine upon and enlighten you and be gracious (kind, merciful, and giving favor) to you; the Lord lift up His [approving] countenance upon you and give you peace (tranquility of heart and life continually).

[Numbers 6:25–26]

Dear Jesus

I am always before you, beckoning you on—one step at a time. Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, can separate you from My loving Presence.

Dear Jesus,

I want to live my life focused on Your Presence in the present. I believe You are always before me, leading and encouraging me, but I need to live out of that reality moment by moment. My mind tends to leap over the present moment to the next task, ignoring the one that is before me and the One who is before me. During rare times when I am able to stay focused on You, my work is infused with Your Presence. It is no longer laborious but delightful: more like play than work.

Beloved, living in collaboration with Me can be a foretaste of heaven. It is wonderful, though not easy: It requires a level of spiritual and mental concentration that is extremely challenging. In the Psalms, David wrote about this collaborative way of living, declaring that he had set Me always before him. As a shepherd, he had plenty of time to seek My Face and enjoy My Presence. He discovered the beauty of days lived with Me always before him—and beside him. I am training you to live this way too. This endeavor requires more persistent effort than anything else you have attempted. Yet, rather than detracting from your other activities, it fills them with vibrant Life.

Whatever you do, do it for Me—with Me, through Me, in Me. Even menial tasks glow with the Joy of My Presence when you do them for Me. Ultimately, nothing will be able to separate you from Me. So this you-and-I-together venture can continue throughout eternity.

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. [Romans 8:38–39]

I have set the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. [Psalm 16:8]

And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. [Colossians 3:23–24]

Dear Jesus

Nothing is wasted when it is shared with Me. I can bring beauty out of the ashes of lost dreams. I can glean Joy out of sorrow, Peace out of adversity. Only a Friend who is also the King of kings could accomplish this divine alchemy.

Dear Jesus,

I am so blessed to have a Friend like you! I want to learn how to share more and more of my life with You. I believe You are capable of bringing beauty out of my lost dreams, Joy out of my sorrow, Peace out of my problems. However, I confess that often I get stuck in my brokenness and struggles. Help me bring all these things to You for transformation.

Beloved, you have made a request that pleases Me greatly. I delight in transforming My precious children. Give Me your broken dreams. Release them into My care and keeping. I will not only heal the brokenness, I will give you a new dream—one that is in harmony with My plans for you. As you seek to actualize this fresh dream, you will find yourself becoming more content and increasingly aware of My beautiful Presence.

Give Me also your sadness and your problems. Sorrow shared with Me is permeated with brilliant sparkles of Joy—like numerous Christmas lights glittering in the darkness. Accept adversity as My gift to you: Search for golden pockets of Peace hidden in the stony hardness of your problems.

I am your devoted Friend and also your King of kings, accomplishing My divine transformation in you. All things are possible with Me!

He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted . . . 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]

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

[John 14:27]

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

[Matthew 19:26]

Dear Jesus

Gently bring your attention back to Me, whenever it wanders away. I look for persistence—rather than perfection—in your walk with Me.

Dear Jesus,

It is such a relief to know that You accept my persistence and do not reject me for my many failures. I’m amazed that my mind can wander so far from You very quickly. When I realize this has happened (again!), my natural tendency is to feel discouraged and disappointed with myself. Thank You for accepting me in all my imperfection.

Beloved, I not only accept you as you are, I love you as you are. I died a criminal’s death so I could adorn you with My own perfection. That’s why bringing your thoughts to Me is so important: It is My perfect righteousness that saves you, and it will never be taken away from you! You can easily fall prey to self-rejection if you have unrealistic expectations for yourself. I want you to bring your focus back to Me gently: without judging yourself. If you express disappointment about your wandering mind, that response will only distract you further. Instead of engaging in such hurtful activity—putting yourself down—persist in returning your attention to Me. I always welcome you back with unfailing Love.

But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.

[Hebrews 10:12–14]

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

[Luke 10:41–42]

How priceless is your unfailing love! Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wings.

[Psalm 36:7]