December is such a busy time of year! Finals for nursing students, winter graduations, extra shifts with patients scheduling elective procedures as well as school events, shopping, decorating, travel, church events, and family gatherings. I make lists. I sacrifice a little sleep. I push through. It’s easy to lose sight of the reason for Christmas and the grace that fills our lives.
Over the past few weeks I’ve had a number of conversations with nurses across the country who are struggling…really struggling. They are hurting and experiencing loss, difficulties with their health, relational conflict, difficult work situations, and financial challenges. The future is filled with questions and uncertainty.
King David knew these challenges. Some of these challenges were of his own making. I have a lot in common with King David. I can be my own worst enemy – especially in the words I speak to myself. David’s words in Psalm 32 reminds me of the hope and grace that always surrounds me. It’s a hope and grace surrounding each of us. We just need eyes to see. We need to lean into the One who knows us best and be willing to follow where He leads.
7 Lord, you are my secret hiding place, protecting me from these troubles,
surrounding me with songs of gladness!
Your joyous shouts of rescue release my breakthrough. Pause in His presence. 8–9 I hear the Lord saying, “I will stay close to you,
instructing and guiding you along the pathway for your life.
I will advise you along the way and lead you forth with my eyes as your guide.
So don’t make it difficult; don’t be stubborn when I take you where you’ve not been before.
Don’t make me tug you and pull you along. Just come with me!”
Psalm 32: 6-9 (The Passion Translation)
Pause in His presence. Know that our cries are heard and the tears we shed are cherished by Him. The Lord God is our secret hiding place. He is trustworthy.
It is an honor to pray for you. It is a privilege to know you are also praying for this ministry. Thank you for your prayers and for the many ways you lift up and encourage us at Nurses Christian Fellowship.
Christy Secor RN, DNP, CDWF, NCF Professional Ministries Director
You can download the December Prayer Calendar here.
December Prayer Calendar
December 1 – We praise God for an increase in submissions to the Journal of Christian Nursing! May God use these articles to support and encourage nurses in their faith and practice.
December 2 – Continue to pray for wisdom for the planning team of Nurses Christian Fellowship International and Colorado Christian University as we prepare for the July 2020 NCFI World Congress. Pray for God to make a way in providing visas and financially for nurses around the world who will be traveling to this conference. Pray for the speakers and that each event would touch hearts and lives to deepen our faith personally and professionally.
December 3 – We lift up Skip McDonald, NCF’s Southeast Regional Resource Specialist, as she asks for wisdom and enablement to resource NCF in the Southeast Region of the United States.
December 4 – We praise God for nurses in Arkansas who have stepped out in faith to establish the first Nurses Christian Fellowship group in Central Arkansas. Pray for God to draw other nurses to this group for support and encouragement.
December 5 – Pray for the planning and success of the Medical Education International Advisory Committee of Christian Medical and Dental Associations (CMDA) who is meeting today and tomorrow in Chicago. MEI sends education teams, often restricted access countries, on invitation from local healthcare professionals and/or missionaries to provide updated medical education. Grace Tazelaar represents NCF on this committee as they often need nurse educators to travel with them to teach nurses but is not able to make this trip as she is continuing to recover from a hip replacement.
December 6 – We thank and praise God for His continuing provisions for NCF and for the positive response we received with our membership specials over Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Pray for our staff as these memberships are processed and as we continue to reach out to nurses across the United States with our Christmas special.
December 7 – Pray for students and faculty as they wrap up their fall semester. Pray for peace and joy amidst the busyness.
December 8 – We pray for an increase in readers for the Journal of Christian Nursing and for JCN to continue to be a trusted resource for nursing students, faculty, and nurses throughout their practice.
December 9 – We ask God to move in the hearts of men and women across the country to support the ministry and work of Nurses Christian Fellowship through their prayers and their financial support.
December 10 – Pray for those who struggle with the Christmas season due to loss and loneliness. May they be able to take all they feel and bring it to the Savior to experience His presence, comfort, and peace.
December 11 – Pray for our professional nurse groups who are meeting this month and caring for others through special outreach events. Pray that God will use the events to bless those who give as well as those who receive.
December 12 – We ask God for expanded expertise and proficiency among the Journal of Christian Nursingteam as responsibilities increase. We also thank him for unity among the staff.
December 13 – We praise God for the dedication, time and effort NCF staff and InterVarsity’s Store has taken to make new NCF items available on the website! We ask God to use NCF stickers, pens, sticky notes, water bottles, and t-shirts to share with others about this ministry.
December 14 – Pray for endurance as so many are tired and weary during this season of final exams, grading, work, shopping, family gatherings, and special events. Pray for wisdom as we set priorities and let us not forget the need to have quiet time with God.
December 15 – Continue to pray for good workflow as we try some new columns and processes with the Journal of Christian Nursing.
December 16 – Pray for student outreaches happening this month. Pray for new students to get involved in NCF!
December 17 – Pray for Skip McDonald as she trusts the Lord to continue to write the mental health Bible studies through her. May God use these Bible studies to support, encourage, and bring healing to us all.
December 18 – We thank God for faith community nurses across the country who are supporting, educating, and caring for individuals within their community. May God continue to use these men and women in unique ways as they provide for the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of others.
December 19 – NCF is experiencing a financial deficit we are working to address. We ask God to provide wisdom, encouragement, and a sense of joy as we share NCF’s story and invite others to partner with us as prayer and financial supporters.
December 20 – Pray for us as believers to remember the real reason for the season and for those in the secular realm to get a glimpse of the Lord's Glory through our witness and the wonder of Christmas.
December 21 – We thank God for Jessica Harper and Leanne Snavely who lead our Marketing and Communications team. Their expertise and insights have added so much to the communications we share with our members. Pray for wisdom and creativity as they continue to look at ways to share who and what NCF is all about with others.
December 22 – Pray for traveling mercies for all visiting family and friends during the holidays. We ask the Lord for wisdom in the way He wants to use us and for sweet memories to cherish.
December 23 – We praise God for our professional nurse groups and the incredible growth we have seen with new groups that have formed in this past year. Pray for encouragement, insight, and wisdom as each of these men and women provide opportunities for connection with other nurses. We ask God to provide strong leadership teams and for nurses in the area to be drawn to participating in a local group. Pray also for wisdom and insight for Christy Secor, NCF’s Professional Ministries Director, as she supports these groups.
December 24 – We remember and lift up in prayer those of us who are working over the holidays. May they carry the joy of the Lord with them as they interact with others on their team as well as to the family members and patients in their care.
December 25 – We praise God for the gift of His Son who humbled Himself to be born in a stable and to first share the news of His birth to shepherds watching their flocks in the fields. His birth, life, and death were not what people expected. He was despised by the religious leaders of His day. He died the death of a criminal. But on that third day! May we love and look for Him in unexpected places.
December 26 – We thank God for the prayers and support of retired nurses around the country who continue to support nursing students, their communities, NCF, and the practice of nursing. These individuals give of their time and talents in deep and meaningful ways. We are grateful for all they do.
December 27 – We ask for our hearts to be tender to the need to meet daily with the Lord. God, we ask that our listening increase. Give us more of You.
December 28 – We ask God for wisdom and direction as NCF prepares for our January 2020 Journal Club. May this be a time to support one another as we also grow in our knowledge and effectiveness as nurses of faith.
December 29 – We thank God for the gift of health. Pray for healing, support, and encouragement for friends and family members who are facing physical, emotional and spiritual challenges. Members of NCF’s staff and nurses across the country have reached out to share about the difficult challenges they are facing as well as walking alongside family and friends who are hurting.
December 30 – Pray for our staff members who are traveling to Staff Conference during the first week of January. Travel for many of us who live in the upper Midwest can be interesting! Pray for those who will be presenting and for connections with InterVarsity’s staff as we seek to reach more nursing students and nurses across the United States. Our team includes: Lisa Carlson, NCF’s Data Processor; Skip McDonald, Southeast Regional Resource Specialist; Jen Wojtysiak, Student Ministries Director; Katharine Provost, Campus Staff Minister; and Christy Secor, Interim Director of NCF/Professional Ministries Director.
December 31 – As we look at a new year, we recognize that Nurses Christian Fellowship belongs to the Lord. We give this ministry to Him to use and grow in the lives of students, faculty, and nurses across the country. May He use our words, time, and presence to support and encourage nurses in their faith and their practice. May we have eyes to see and ears to hear as we follow where He leads.