Below you’ll find excerpts from the chapter, plus my own additional reflections, the encouragement God has put on my heart to share with you today, a special prayer for you to pray, and a worship song.
Day 2 Reflection: 7 Days of Prayer with Jane Austen
Be Gracious to our Necessities, and guard us, and all we love, from Evil this night. May the sick and afflicted, be now, & ever thy care . . .Jane Austen, Prayer 1
In this portion of her first prayer, Jane asks God to “be Gracious” toward their needs and “guard” them during the night. She also asks God to care for and watch over the “sick and afflicted.” She asks God to be with them in the difficulties and trials of life.
Jane’s prayer echoes God’s promise to never leave us or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). In fact, Isaiah 49:16 says he has “engraved” the names of his people “on the palms of [his] hands.” (Can you picture your name written on the palms of his hands?)
“And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20)
Being with God in our troubles—and knowing that he is with us in them—is one of the many benefits of an intimate relationship with Christ. The very name Immanuel means “God with us” (Matthew 1:23).
Are you feeling anxious or alone right now? Or do you know of people who are currently sick or experiencing loneliness? Take this time to lift specific friends, family members, and coworkers up in prayer.
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
Invitation to Pray:
Thank You that You are always with me. Thank You for being my Emmanuel–for being with me in every season, in every trial, in the midst of trouble. I bring before You all that’s on my mind and heart today. I confess that I am worried at times for myself, my family, and my friends.
Lord, please be gracious to me and all my necessities, my needs, my cares. I lift to You now my immediate needs: [your specific prayer].
I ask You to please guard me and all I love today. May we each experience Your presence in a tangible way and know the comfort of Your peace. May the sick and afflicted, be in Your special care, Oh Lord: [specific names].
In Jesus’ powerful name, Amen.
God With Us
God is with you — right now. Even when you can’t see him. Even when you don’t feel him. He is there. Right next to you.
And he’s with the people you just prayed for. Today’s portion of Jane Austen’s prayers is incredibly timely. We can pray for God’s help, provision, and protection during times of crisis. We can pray for ourselves and for “all we love,” especially for the sick and afflicted.
And even though we can’t perhaps visit people in person during this health crisis, we can each make a phone call, write a card, or send a text. If this prayer prompt helped you today, please share it with someone who might need God’s encouragement!
Grace and peace,