[March 10, 2024]

Heartland Community Church


Just Ask

by Lisa Zulke

Breath. Deep, lung-filling breath. That has been my daily bread for the past week. I’m training for an endurance race, and I have a lung condition. Both things are true. One mostly doesn’t get in the way of the other—until my left lung stops exchanging properly.

I started my long run last Saturday, tired and sluggish. Listening to the signals, I turned back early and chalked it up to travel and long days exploring with friends. Then, I woke up with a whistling crackle in my chest. Lovely.

This is not part of my training plan. I have no time for this, God. I’m already stretched and slightly afraid of the big goal I’ve taken on, and this is not helping. I connected with my pulmonologist and got the prescriptions and plan to help open my airways.

When you can’t breathe deeply, you rest. You stroll, maybe. You see things you might miss at a faster pace: a gourd-shaped bird’s nest with a perfectly circular entrance woven from grass, the way the sun dances in the dappled branches on the breeze. Thank you, Jesus, for these signals.

The beginning of my week of rest was spent complaining to God, mainly because he already knows what I’m thinking and can handle my complaints and laments. I can say things in these gut-level, real-me groans that I might not utter in front of mere humans. But the real me meets the real God in this middle space amidst the hardness of life. (The Praying Life by Paul Miller is the book Brad referenced today containing this reference.)

Rant over, I can focus on the crucial daily bread-level question we were given today: What do I most need from God right now?

Breath. Deep, lung-filling breath.

But even more than that, I’ve been reminded in my struggle, fear, and disappointment that only God’s presence makes not having that breath tolerable.

Amidst our pain, shortcomings, and crises, we need God’s presence most. When we’re surrounded by the hardness of our circumstances, he comes to us and sends us glimpses to remind us we are not alone. What do you need from God today? Lift your eyes, even a little, and look for signs of his presence amidst your circumstances. I promise, he is there.

If you would like our team to join you in prayer, CLICK HERE to send a request.



[Monday, March 11]

Matthew 6:11, 7:7-11

What does your daily bread look like? Take some time peeling back your circumstances today, and see if you can get to the center of what you most need from God. As you ask, seek and knock this week, remember that you pray to a God who is a daily giver of good things to his kids. You are one of those kids. He longs to be present with you amidst the daily grind of life.


[Tuesday, March 12]

Matthew 6:30-33

You probably noticed that I love the glory of God’s created world. I see so many signs from God, messages along the way in every day, that remind me he is here. Your eye and mind might be drawn to different things.Where do you see reminders of God’s provision and God’s presence? How can these moments become tiny altars in your world? This, too, is worship. Seeking and finding signs of your heavenly Father in the mundane or the vast and glorious. Allow him to show you, to encourage you.


[Wednesday, March 13]

John 6:35-51

Take time to read this passage three times through. The first time, pay attention to the details. Who is present? Who is speaking, how are people interacting? Where are they? Why are the gathered? The second time, take note of what is being said. How are the teachings received? Where can you imagine yourself in this scene? On your final pass, begin to notice what specifically stands out to you. What might be a lesson to take note of, a challenge to consider stepping into? In our hurried, frenzied world, Jesus invites us to consider a different pace and a different way. How might you explore his invitation this week?


[Thursday, March 14]

James 4:2-3

This passage invites us to consider our motivations when we ask something of God or one another. Asking honestly for what we need is hard because we must humble ourselves. It is an admission that I can’t do it on my own, which requires an honest assessment of where we are at, and a vulnerable ask of God or another to help us. The posture of humility brings us nearer to one another, and nearer to God in the asking and receiving. What is your posture toward asking for help?


[Friday, March 15]

Nehemiah 2:1-6

Nehemiah draws a deep, lung-filling soul-emptying breath and asks the king for what he wants. He makes his ask from a place of pure motives and a desire to honor God and repair the walled city of his ancestors. Is there something you worry about? Have you brought your worry–and the task at hand–to God, asking for his help?


{extra journey resources}

CLICK HERE to visit The Bible Project site and explore their super simple, super informative Bible videos (and other resources). You can also download The Bible Project App HERE.

CLICK HERE to get the Read Scripture App, from our friends at The Bible Project.

CLICK HERE for more on how to use the observe-reflect-apply approach to getting the most out of your Bible reading.

The Bible App Get the free YouVersion Bible for your phone, tablet, or computer. Experience the Bible anywhere, with options to highlight, save notes, and share what you are reading with others.

The Bible App For Kids YouVersion partnered with OneHope to develop the Bible App for Kids, designing it specifically to engage children with Bible stories on an age-appropriate level. The Bible App for Kids is a free app for Android, Apple, and Kindle devices, available in over 60 languages.

Bible Gateway Provides advanced Bible searching capabilities, which allow readers to find passages in scripture based on keywords, phrases, or scripture reference.

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12175 S Strang Line Road, Olathe, KS 66062

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