Dorothy Valcarcel Devotional - Transformation Gardens Devotions for Women
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Transformation Garden - November 14, 2021

  • 2021 Nov 14

Today’s Text and Thought of Encouragement:

“God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of His Son Jesus Christ our Lord.”

1 Corinthians 1: 9

King James Version


“Praying the Praise Prayer – I Enter”

“We seldom lose our faith by a big blow out, usually it is just a slow leak.”

Author Unknown

Do I have faith to trust that God can and will guide me as I enter each day?

“Do not look forward to the changes and chances of this life in fear; rather look to them with full hope that, as they arise, God, whose you are, will deliver you out of them.  He is your keeper. He has kept you hitherto. Do you but hold fast to His dear hand, and He will lead you safely through all things; and, when you cannot stand, He will bear you in His arms.  Do not look forward to what may happen tomorrow.  Our Father will either shield you from suffering, or He will give you strength to bear it.”

Frances of Sales


“E” – I enter this day filled with faith in what You can do for me and not what I can do for myself.

I hate to exercise.  There, I said it.  I know it’s not because I lack the discipline. I can be extremely disciplined when I need to be.  I study and write everyday – and I love it!  But exercise, that’s something totally different.  Oh, I like to walk in the cool of the evening.  However, the exercise I’m talking about is the kind that makes you move fast enough to burn calories, keep your weight in control and make your heart pump.

In life, there are certain activities that require two things – discipline and choice.  These activities don’t just happen by snapping your fingers or wishing on a star.  One of the activities I’m referring to is the development of a deep and lasting spiritual life.  It doesn’t just happen!  Don’t get me wrong, conversion can happen with lightning speed.  Just look at the Apostle Paul on the road to Damascus.   Paul was walking along planning his next act of vengeance on the Christians who were believers in the risen Christ, when all of a sudden he met the “real deal” who stopped him in his tracks.   From heaven Paul hears a voice, “Paul, Paul why persecutest thou Me?”, Acts 9:4, KJV.  In a split second, Paul realized the terrible mistake he had made.   Never again do we hear about Paul doing anything but uplifting the name of Jesus Christ in his life.

However, the daily life was something else.  Paul even refers to a “thorn” in his life.   Something, and we don’t for certain know what, drove Paul to the feet of Jesus everyday as he asked for God’s help.   After three times of asking God to remove this “thorn,” Paul was given this heavenly assurance, “My grace is sufficient for thee,” II Corinthians 12:9, KJV.

Today, as we look at line six in the “Praise Prayer,” the last stanza in this life-changing prayer, I want to testify to you from personal experience over the last 15 years of praying this prayer, that God’s grace is sufficient but what’s more, being consistent in our spiritual life is what changes us.

I have a good friend who is a physical trainer.   We were having a discussion about my distaste for exercising.  Andrea gave me this piece of advice, “Dorothy, exercise doesn’t make a big difference in your body if you don’t do it every day.”  Just what I didn’t want to hear.  I wanted my friend to tell me that once a week was enough.  Or one weekend a month would do the trick.  But no, she told me I needed to “move my body” every day.

Well, Transformation Garden friends, we need to move our lips everyday if we want to develop strong spiritual muscles, too!

While I think revival meetings or weekend retreats or camp meetings all have their place in giving us an immediate spiritual transfusion, I’ve found too often in my own life that the “high” I receive in the moment can be followed by a “low” when I return home and am faced with the reality of everyday life.  Several years ago I went to a weekend retreat.  The speakers were fabulous.  The smell of the mountain pines brought refreshment and clarity to my life.  I purposed to be all God wanted.  My faith at that moment was at a fevered pitch.  Not only did I have a longing for a deeper walk with Jesus but I told myself that “this time” nothing would deter me.  My faith was strong.  But back at home, in the rush of the day, it became all too easy to see my faith slip away when I was confronted and confounded by the stress of daily living.

This is where I have found the “Praise Prayer” and my morning time with Jesus to play such a vital role in my spiritual life.

Harry Fosdick wrote, “It is cynicism and fear that freeze life; it is faith that thaws it out, releases it, sets it free.”   And this describes perfectly what happens when we don’t make a choice to daily take time with Jesus.  The hardships we face, whether perceived or real, make us fearful and soon we become rather cynical saying, “I can’t do this.   It’s impossible.  Nobody can.”

And you know what, we can’t do anything in the spiritual life on our own.  Oh, we “control-freaks” and “independent types” like to think we can do everything on our own.  But we can’t!   This is why line “6” in the “Praise Prayer” is so critical.  Every day when I say these words, I remind myself that my faith is in “You,” in God, who has all the power in His hands to do for me what I cannot do for myself.  All I have to do is choose everyday to plug myself into Him.

Several days ago, I was getting ready to curl my hair.   I put the hot curlers on the sink in the bathroom.  They were all in a nice little row just waiting for me to come back to the bathroom, when the light went on, letting me know they were hot and ready!  While I waited, I went to the kitchen.  Got my breakfast.  And then came back expecting the curlers to be hot and ready. They weren’t.   Goofy girl, Dorothy, forgot to plug them in to the electrical socket on the wall.  Do you get my point?  My spiritual life can be just like those curlers – all neat in a row.  I go to church every week. I smile at the right people and say “Hallelujah” and “Praise the Lord!”  I even do my church duties with a smile on my face. But if I am not plugged in to the electrical current, while the curlers look great on the outside, at their core they are cold! They aren’t heated by the current that makes them useful!

I love this quote by Georgia Harkness: “One can believe in God with a very complete set of arguments, yet not have any faith that makes a difference in living.”

We have to be plugged in everyday to see the results in the “muscles” of our spiritual life.  This is why, everyday, we need to say to God: “I enter this day filled with faith in what You can do for me and not what I can do for myself.” This is our daily discipline choice.  A choice to plug into the mightiest Power Source in the universe.

I want to close our study on the “Praise Prayer” with the words of Major Daniel Webster Whittle who wrote the beautiful hymn, “Moment By Moment.”

“Moment by moment I’m kept in His love,

Moment by moment I’ve life from above;

Looking to Jesus till glory doth shine,

Moment by moment, O Lord, I am Thine.”

May this be our prayer today.

“E” – I enter this day filled with faith in what You can do for me and not what I can do for myself.

“Boundless is Thy love for me, boundless then my trust shall be.”

Robert Bridges


On a Hard Journey

“O God who travels with us in the shadows,

You know who we are.

We long for life which is full and free.

We long to know the truth

and we want to leave behind us

all the things which hold us back. 


We want to move forward in faith

but the way seems so dangerous

and we stand in helpless fear

before the hiddenness in our past

and in our future.


Stand beside us, gentle Christ.

Walk before us, brave Jesus.

Call us on into life, Holy Spirit.


Dorothy McRae-McMahon

Your friend,

Dorothy Valcárcel, Author
When A Woman Meets Jesus

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