DAY 1 – Jan 8

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DAY 1: A PRAYER OF ASCENT

Psalm 131:1-3
Lord, my heart is not proud; my eyes are not haughty.
I don’t concern myself with matters too great or too wonderful for me to grasp. But I have calmed and quieted myself, I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content. Israel, put your hope in the LORD both now and forevermore.

An ascent is a climb or walk upward, such as to the summit of a mountain or hill. Rising above our current circumstances and vision of life is an important part of our spiritual journeys. The poet John Greenleaf Whittier referred to this dynamic when he issued this invitation: “I’ll lift you and you lift me, and we’ll both ascend together.” 

Imagine being a pilgrim pursuing God by ascending a steep hill to an impressive house of worship, singing this song (now known as Psalm 131) with others along the way:

“My heart is not proud, LORD, my eyes are not haughty; I do not concern myself with great matters or things too wonderful for me. But I have calmed and quieted myself, I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content. Israel, put your hope in the LORD both now and forevermore.”

Which words in the song stick out to you most? Why those words? What do they reveal about what valley you may need to ascend out of this week?

David was a simple shepherd boy who became a king who designed the temple these pilgrims were ascending to on Mount Zion. How does David’s journey remind you of yours?

PRAY
Read verses 1 and 2 of today’s reading as a prayer to God. Say it slowly, more than once if you need to, to begin ascending toward God today.

Note the words that stuck out to you earlier in this worship song. Use each one to form a prayer, an admission, a thank you, or to express a desire of some kind as you begin these 21 days of prayer.

Temperatures change when you ascend to higher elevations. What atmospheric or attitudinal changes are beginning to happen around you? What sense do you have from God as you begin this journey? Thank him in advance for what is about to happen in your life these next three weeks.