My Goodness: A Devotion & Prayer for {YOU}

Goodness&Mercy

A sweet gift and guest post from my friend, Sheila Mangum:

It was well into the second quarter of the high school basketball game when the senior captain of the home team showed up late.

Just that morning his mother unexpectedly passed away from a sudden hemorrhage. She’d been in remission after a five-year fight with cervical cancer when she took the fatal turn.

Some of the team had been at the hospital with their grieving friend. Although they had an important game that night, the guys wanted to cancel it. Brokenhearted, the senior captain encouraged the team to play.

You can imagine everyone’s surprise when this young man came out to root for his team.

His coach asked him if he wanted to sit on the bench with his teammates.

“No,” he replied. “I want to play.”

Game rules prevented anyone not on the pre-game roster to play unless the opposing team was granted a technical foul that would give them two free throws. It was a tight game, but his coach willingly traded the points to comfort his player.

But that is not where the compassion stopped.

The other coach wasn’t interested in the free throws. He wanted to let the brokenhearted player just play. With no penalties. This coach and the referees argued over the rules until the referees won with, “Rules will not be broken.”

So, after a brief conversation with his coach, the visiting team’s senior captain took his place on the free throw line.

Giving his coach an understanding nod, he dribbled the ball and threw it two feet. The crowd stared in wonder as the ball rolled off the court. The second free throw landed at his feet. He had purposefully missed guaranteed points.

This gesture of sportsmanship ignited a standing ovation. Applause roared throughout the gym. The crowd witnessed a rare act of kindness birthed out of the goodness of the visiting coach and captain’s hearts.

We don’t often hear about people taking hold of opportunities to demonstrate such graciousness. But every day we can see God’s goodness if we simply take the time. Psalm 23:6 tells us that “Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.”

Before the brokenhearted player even arrived at the game, God’s goodness followed him, ready to show up when he needed it most. Goodness tapped two coaches on the shoulders. Goodness whispered in the hearts of a group of teenagers.

God’s goodness is here for us as well. We find it in His daily care and love, especially in times of hardship. But we have to “get in the game” to see it. If we’re checked out of life, not spending time in prayer, or not actively seeking to recognize God’s goodness, we’ll miss it. True, His goodness might not always seem as evident as a team opting out of free points in a basketball game, but God’s goodness is all around us.

Could His kindness and love be the encouraging word or hug from a friend? Perhaps it’s peace that comes unexpectedly from God’s Word, a sermon, or prayer. Maybe it’s the conversation with the grocery store clerk that brought a smile to your face.

This young man who lost his mother probably had no idea how he was going to ease the pain that surrounded him. You may be wondering that very thing as well. This is why God promises, “The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18).

God wants to be closer to you than the pain. One way He does this is by following you with His goodness and showing up through the hands and hearts of others.

I cannot tell you who won the last Super Bowl. I don’t know who the Major League’s MVP is. There’s no way I can spout off the NBA lineup. What I can tell you about is the day God’s goodness followed a crushed young man into a gymnasium during a high school basketball game and made His goodness known. I can tell you he played the rest of the game, scoring ten points that led to his team’s victory.

But most importantly, I can tell you that God’s goodness is following you. Will you get in the game and look for it? God’s goodness is following you and wants to be closer to you than the pain. Lastly, will you be God’s hand of goodness to someone today

Sheila’s Prayer for You

Father,

I love you! You alone are God. (Deuteronomy 4:39)  Besides You there is no God and in that we rejoice. (Isaiah 44:6-7)  Thank you Father that Your goodness is following my friend. (Psalm 23:6) You daily look for ways to love on your children. (Psalm 143:8) You hourly direct their steps towards what is good and best for them. (Psalm 32:8) Every minute of the day is designed to envelop them in Your everlasting love. (Jeremiah 31:3) You think of my friend every second of the day! Your thoughts are too vast to count. (Psalm 139:17-18)  May they not miss a second of Your attention. (2 Chronicles 16:9)

Thank you for promising to be closer than the pain crushing their heart. (Psalm 34:18) You are compassionate and You are completely Faithful to love them devotedly. (Lamentations 3:22-23) I ask You to continue placing miracles in their paths. (John 2:11) Open eyes to the marvelous ways Your goodness has shown up in their lives already. (Job 37:5) You are not a man that you would lie. (Numbers 23:19) Therefore, when You say Your goodness follows them it is completely true. May Your child be ever mindful of Your very near Presence today. (Exodus 33:15) May they prepare to be amazed. (1 Samuel 12:16)

Oh and Father, may You be blessed when they turn around, like the one leper, to thank you for turning their mourning into dancing. (Luke 17:15-19 and Psalm 30:11-12)

May it be so!

In the Mighty Name of Jesus we have prayed,
Amen and Amen

To AMEN the prayer,  leave an AMEN by clicking “Share Your Thoughts” below.

 

About Renee

Renee Swope is a Word-lover, story-teller, heart-encourager and grace-needer. She's also a wife, mom, friend, daughter and author of A Confident Heart, a Retailers Choice Award winning book that became a best-seller and has been published in six languages, with over 150,000 copies sold. Renee is speaks around the country at women's events and and serves on the writing team for DaySpring’s inCourage blog. For twenty years, Renee served in leadership at Proverbs 31 Ministries and as former co-host of the ministry's radio program, “Everyday Life with Lysa & Renee.

Comments

  1. rokhshie says:

    and a hundred, thousand Amens!

    • wonderful story! amen

    • I’ve always been extremely compassionate towards my wonderful husband, Ron Smith.I don’t enjoy seeing him so down in the dumps when something happens to him or his family. I ♥… my husband so much that I want to try to uplift his spirits as much as I possibly can, no matter what it is that is going on. My ♥ will get him through whatever difficulties life’s handing him. “It was well into the second quarter of the high school basketball game when the senior captain of the home team showed up late.

      Just that morning his mother unexpectedly passed away from a sudden hemorrhage. She’d been in remission after …a five-year fight with cervical cancer when she took the fatal turn.”

      Some of the team had been at the hospital with their grieving friend. Although they had an important game that night, the guys wanted to cancel it. Brokenhearted, the senior captain encouraged the team to play.

      You can imagine everyone’s surprise when this young man came out to root for his team.His coach asked him if he wanted to sit on the bench with his teammates.

      “No,” he replied. “I want to play.”

      Game rules prevented anyone not on the pre-game roster to play unless the opposing team was granted a technical foul that would give them two free throws. It was a tight game, but his coach willingly traded the points to comfort his player.

      But that is not where the compassion stopped….”~Renee Swope Incredible! How wonderful it is to see such compassion in great times of need! I wonder what prompted that coach to bend the rules to allow his player into the game, despite his tardiness to enter the game to begin with. Could it possibly be that God had been speaking to his heart when he learned of the

    • This artilce went ahead and made my day.

  2. Miss Mary T says:

    Amen!

  3. Amen !

  4. Amen!

  5. Amen !!! Pls pray for me my husband is in prison and I have fear about my driving I want to go see him tomorrow and I am stressing big time about the drive. This will be the first time I will have to go alone and I am afraid of getting lost making the wrong turn, trying to get in the right lane for my exit and turns even with gps I mess up and traffic. I am a mess with THIS driving and with directions. I look at the gps 50 million times printed off directions from map quest too and I am a nervous wreck. Pls pray I would have to leave at 6:30 am tomorrow morning if I do go. Help me JESUS! .

  6. AMEN Thank you for reminding of His great Love for me. I needed that.

  7. amen

  8. Amen and Amen.
    Please pray for a Divine intervention in my friend Mark’s life.
    Thank you. God’s goodness and love!

  9. Susan G says:

    This was such an amazing story! The prayer is one I will use to pray for others!
    Thanks for such an encouraging word for us all!

  10. Susan G says:

    I forgot to add my AMEN!
    I also prayed for divine intervention for Mark, and I prayed for Angie to be directed while driving by God Himself, and that she will drive directly there like she knew every step of the way and get home safely.

  11. Cynthia says:

    Amen!! What an inspired word and right on time!! God bless!!

  12. Amen, a beautiful reminder much needed. Thank you!! God bless you!!

  13. Amen!

  14. Amen!! I believe I read that story before when Shelia shared it, but I loved it again this AM…thanks for sharing!! Grateful for His goodness!! And for seeing it here! Blessings to you both!

  15. AMEN!!!

  16. AMEN. In the Name of Jesus Amen!

  17. AMEN and AMEN!!!

  18. Amen and Amen

  19. Amen!!! Please pray for a miracle…I am so stressed right now….I have a child who is suicidal and I made a mistake at work which could cost me my job. Please, please pray for God to work a miracle in my job and divine intervention for my child

  20. Amen for everytime goodness and mercy followed and continues to follow me all the days of my life. Yes I shall dwell in the house of The Lord forever Amen and Amen
    Angie and Jody – you are daughters of the Most High God – of whom shall you fear? My prayers are added to the others…Fear not for I AM with you says The Lord !!!

  21. Amen!!!

  22. Charlene Price says:

    Amen!

  23. Amen, Amen, Amen!!

  24. Amen and amen and amen and amen and amen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  25. This post made me cry. I’m dealing with something pretty awful right now, and a couple of days ago, God did a bunch of things for me that were completely unrelated to “the situation,” but they were like huge, fuzzy hugs. It was just Him being good to me. It meant so much just to feel His comfort and see Him taking care of me. I’m so thankful for His goodness and mercy. Thanks for the post.

  26. Amen!

  27. Elizabeth says:

    AMEN! I have been a mess this week, as my husband is in Italy on business.. I worry and worry, with the state of the world we live in, about his safety. He is partially blind, so I really get concerned about him. I know I need to trust God, and I do, but the enemy likes to sneak in and harass me. We have been married for 32 years, and we are very close. Please keep my family in prayer, as we are raising two sweet grand kiddos, and they miss him as well.. Thanks and God Bless

  28. Thank you so very much for this wonderful post, this came at a very good time, my brother-in-law Roger and my sister Diane are at John Hopkins in Baltimore, Md he is has prostate cancer very badly it has spread to all his lymph nodes and his stomach. He is to have all kinds of scans and testings today. They are both Christians but as you know cancer has so many forms of stress. They have a daughter who is 31 her name is Holly and her husband have a 2 year old little boy and a 6 week old baby girl, who are the light of their grandparents eyes, they also have a daughter 22 she is also married and they have a puppy!!! Thanks so much for this post!!! Have a wonderful day!!

  29. AMEN! Awesome showing of God’s mercy and goodness. Thanks for sharing. Prayers lifted up for all posts I’ve just read. Praying for God’s comfort and strength for you all. Trust in Him! Amen! God Bless!

  30. Amen!

  31. Kassandra Love Watson says:

    Amen!

  32. Amen! God is good all the time.

  33. Thank you for this encouraging story and prayer. It is incredible what God’s goodness can do–I am amazed by all the forms it takes! Amen Amen!

  34. Ann Heinrichs says:

    Thank you!!!!

  35. Christy says:

    Amen to the Moon and back. HE is ALWAYS GOOD!

  36. Amen… So needed to be reminded of this!!!

  37. Amen!

  38. kathy hyman says:

    AMEN

  39. amen. My God is so good!! Praise His name.

  40. Carla reichard says:

    Inspiring article.

  41. Carla reichard says:

    Amen.

  42. LaDonna Bishop says:

    Very inspirational. It brought tears to my eyes. Love it.AMEN

  43. Melissa says:

    Amen

  44. Amen! Praise God! This will work for grieving in relationshps, too. Thank you.

  45. Becca Dowling says:

    Amen. God’s promises are always yes and amen!

  46. Amen and Amen! God is so wonderfully good!

  47. Elizabeth Champlin says:

    Amen!

  48. Amen!

  49. Bernadette says:

    AMEN!

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