Prayers for 21

I turn 21 tomorrow.

Each year following age eighteen lays a little heavier, a little more seriously. Time passes even more quickly, seeming to gather speed. 

What a gift God's salvation is that wraps these years in knowing Him. This looking forward to another year getting to know better my Savior, my Father, my God. It's God's grace alone that reaches down to us; those who do did not deserve His Cross. As each year passes, I want to be more aware of this amazing grace. This Cross. This love.

These are my prayers not just for twenty-one, but for all the years that God sees fit to bless me with.

I pray the age of twenty-one will see more fruit and growth in my life. Because if I'm "standing still" in my growth, I'm really regressing.

He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.
— Psalm 1:3
He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.
— Jeremiah 17:8

I pray it will bring more opportunities to work for Your kingdom & that I would step out and take them even though I am afraid.

I pray it will bring along more wonderful, godly, life long friendships and the continual growth of those I have already been blessed with. 

I pray it will bring along less love for this world and an ever-growing love for You and the looking forward to Your Kingdom. That my treasures would not be here on earth where moth and rust destroy. (Matthew 6:19-21)

I pray it will bring forth encouraging and truth-filled words to this blog and my music. I pray my words would be sweeter and life giving to those around me. That the poison of pride would have no place. That You would be in every lyric, note, word. 

I pray twenty-one would see more times of worship around bonfires and more evenings of laughter, joy, and precious memories made with friends and family as we learn to love each other better because our friendships are built on You.

I pray I wouldn't be afraid to hope more because my hope is built on You. I pray it will be a year of increasing faith. Hope for the things not yet seen and a boldness before Your throne of grace in prayer and not limiting You; asking You for big things.

I pray it will bring more love for people and more grace for the inevitable failures and disappointments that we each commit. That my hope would be found in You alone and not dependent on the rise and fall of people, circumstances, or seasons of life.

I pray you would continue to show me all of the things I struggle with making idols of. That You would refine and weed out all that is not of You.

I pray I would be a woman who is constantly surrendering control of her life and giving it over to You in faith; not a manipulator of circumstances or a woman who grasps at closed doors. A woman who truly believes that all of the answers of "no, not yet, or wait" are truly Your best for me.

I pray twenty-one would see a woman more radiant and fulfilled in You. That people would see more of You in me. That it would see me become a woman that mirrors You and is unconcerned with what the world thinks of me as an individual outside of You. That my actions would not be motivated by a concern for what this world thinks.

I pray I would grow in compassion. That I would look outward and my heart would break even more over the lost, the broken, the hungry, the hopeless, and those who dwell in darkness. 

I pray it would see a woman who trusts You and does not cease living though she has desires and dreams that must turn into prayers. A woman who fights to live now. Who praises You through the waiting.

I pray that ugly pride would never win and keep me from taking every opportunity to say 'I love you' or showing love to those You have placed in my life. That family and friends would never be commonplace or taken for granted.

I pray twenty-one would be a year of stepping out in faith & doing hard things. For loving the least and sharing your gospel with those who don't know Your Name. That I would listen to the calls you place on my heart.

I pray that as inevitable heartaches and challenges come, I would use those times to look for Your faithfulness amongst brokenness. That I would choose to see how You are graciously moving away, or towards something else that is far better than my own finite plans.  

I pray twenty-one and all the following years would be as life changing as twenty has been. That the Cross would grow ever more to be the backdrop, the reason, the foundation for everything.

For now,