A Prayer Litany for the US this 4th of July Weekend – Kyrie Eleison

July 3, 2015


Via Twitter, I discovered the blog 364 Days of Thanksgiving, by Lutheran Pastor Andy Schroer.  Earlier in the week he posted an entry Kyrie Eleison with a prayer litany for the US as we head into our July 4th celebrations:

In light of recent events in our countryand as we prepare to celebrate the Fourth of July, I invite you to pray the Kyrie with me:

Almighty God, we pray today for our nation – a nation blessed by you, but also a nation divided, a nation marked by violence and racism, a nation stained by sin.

Lord, have mercy.

We pray for our government. Bless our president, congress and courts. Help them to act wisely and according to your will. When they don’t, in your mercy forgive them. Use us and others to speak out against injustice and sin, but also help us to respect the governing officials as your representatives.

Lord, have mercy.

We pray for the families of the victims of the massacre in Charleston, South Carolina. Give them the peace that only you can give. We thank you for the faith of those who died and the heaven they are now enjoying because of Jesus. We also pray for the shooter, Dylan Roof, and all those whose hearts are hardened by racism and hate. Help them to find in you forgiveness and love.

Lord, have mercy.

As our nation struggles with issues of sexuality and marriage, we ask you to bless the families of our land. Help husbands and wives to love each other as you have loved them. In your mercy, forgive our many sins against your gift of sexuality.

Lord, have mercy.

Be with the Christians of our land. Give us the courage to stand firm in your Word. Forgive us our pride and anger. Help us to speak your truth boldly and in love.

Lord, have mercy.

We ask all of these things knowing that we and our nation are unworthy of your love. Yet, trusting in your mercy and the forgiveness Jesus won for us, we pray:

Kyrie eleison.

The full entry is here.

A Prayer Litany for Marriage from the ACNA college of bishops

June 26, 2015

The ACNA bishops today released a unanimous statement on the Supreme Court’s decision re: same sex marriage.  You can read the full statement here.

At the end they issue a call to prayer, and include a wonderful litany for marriage.  I urge all of our readers to print this out and pray it regularly.

Today there is no place for either triumphalism or despair, so we prayerfully and sincerely urge a spirit of charity by all. We speak out of a concern for the consequences that our people and our neighbors will suffer from an unjust and unwise decision by five justices of the Supreme Court. We call those justices to repentance, even as we echo Jesus’ words, praying for God the Father to forgive them, for they know not what they have done.
We call our people to a season of prayer for marriage and offer the accompanying Litany and Prayer to guide us.
A Litany for Marriage
We thank you, heavenly Father, for graciously creating us in your image, male and female, and for ordaining
that a man and woman shall be joined as one flesh in the covenant of marriage.
We thank you, O Father.
We thank you for the gift and heritage of children and for placing them in homes which may be havens of
blessing and peace.
We thank you, O Father.
We thank you for the love between fathers and mothers and sons and daughters that binds together the
generations and undergirds our country’s social fabric.
We thank you, O Father.
Lord Jesus Christ, divine Bridegroom, we repent for all the situations in which we have dishonored the
covenant of marriage through selfishness or unfaithfulness.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
We repent as a Church where we have failed to prepare our children for holy matrimony, or to care for those
who are widowed, divorced or single.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
We repent where as citizens we have become complacent and neglected the defense of marriage in the public
Lord, have mercy upon us.
We pray you, Holy Spirit, to restore marriage to its due honor in our country and to revive our marriages and
families as emblems of your love.
Deliver us by your grace and power.
We pray you to strengthen our bishops and other leaders as they join with faithful churches to make a strong
God-honoring defense of your design for marriage.
Deliver us by your grace and power.
We pray you to have mercy on those who have promoted false teaching about marriage and on those who
have been led astray and harmed by it.
Deliver us by your grace and power.
Grant us courage, O Triune God, to hold fast to the truth of your Word, and give grace to those who are
counted worthy to suffer for the Name of Christ.
“Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his
glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and
authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen” (Jude 24-25).
A Prayer for Marriage
Almighty God our heavenly Father, you have created us male and female in your image and have ordained that a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife. Look down in mercy, we pray, on our families, our church and our nation. Knit together in constant affection those who, in Holy Matrimony, have been made one flesh. Turn the hearts of the parents to the children, the hearts of the children to the parents, and the hearts of all to those who are single or alone. Finally, grant that your Church may steadfastly defend the unchangeable bond of marriage which embodies the mystery of Christ’s love for us; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom with you and the Holy Spirit, be all honor and glory, now and forever.

National Day of Prayer in the U.S.

May 7, 2015

image credit: nationaldayofprayer.org

The theme for the 2015 National Day of Prayer is Lord, Hear Our Cry, emphasizing the need for individuals, corporately and individually, to place their faith in the unfailing character of their Creator, who is sovereign over all governments, authorities, and men.  To further highlight our theme, we’ve chosen I Kings 8:28 as our Scripture for this year:  “Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is praying in your presence this day.”

Here’s the prayer for today’s National Day of Prayer in the US, written by the National Day of Prayer Chairman

Heavenly Father,

We come to You in the Name that is above every name—Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Our hearts cry out to You.

Knowing that You are a prayer-answering, faithful God—the One we trust in times like these—we ask that You renew our spirits, revive our churches, and heal our land.

We repent of our sins and ask for Your grace and power to save us. Hear our cry, oh God, and pour out Your Spirit upon us that we may walk in obedience to Your Word.

We are desperate for Your tender mercies. We are broken and humbled before You.

Forgive us, and in the power of Your great love, lift us up to live in Your righteousness.

We pray for our beloved nation. May we repent and return to You and be a light to the nations. And we pray for our leaders and ask that You give them wisdom and faith to follow You.

Preserve and protect us, for You are our refuge and only hope.

Deliver us from all fears except to fear You, and may we courageously stand in the Truth that sets us free.

We pray with expectant faith and grateful hearts.

In Jesus’ name, our Savior.


– 2015 National Prayer by Dr. Jack Graham


For more resources:

Web: http://nationaldayofprayer.org

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/NationalPrayer

(also hashtag:  #NDOP)




Music for Lent (Classic CCM): Keith Green – Rushing Wind

March 5, 2015

Keith Green’s wonderful prayer song “Rushing Wind” came up in my Lent playlist two nights ago.  I’ve been singing it in my head ever since.  It’s such a powerful prayer of sanctification and surrender.

Rushing wind blow through this temple,
Blowing out the dust within,
Come and breathe you breath upon me,
I’ve been born again.

Holy spirit, I surrender, take me where you want to go,
Plant me by your living water,
Plant me deep so I can grow.

Jesus, you’re the one, who sets my spirit free,
Use me lord, glorify, your holy name through me.

Separate me from this world lord.
Sanctify my life for you.
Daily change me to your image,
Help me bear good fruit.

Every day you’re drawing closer.
Trials come to test my faith.
But when all is said and done lord,
You know, it was worth the wait.

Jesus, you’re the one, who set my spirit free,
Use me lord, glorify, your holy name through me.

Rushing wind blow through this temple,
Blowing out the dust within,
Come and breathe you breath upon me,
For I’ve been born again.
Songwriters: Green, Keith Gordon / Green, Melody
Rushing Wind lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

A good new year’s prayer: the Methodist Covenant Prayer

January 1, 2015

From our 2004 archives, the following prayer, often called The Methodist Covenant Prayer, makes a good prayer of fresh commitment to the Lord for the New Year.

I am no longer my own, but yours:
Put me to what you will,
Rank me with whom you will;
Put me to suffering;
Let me be employed by you or laid aside by you,
Exalted for you or brought low by you;
Let me be full, let me be empty;
Let me be nothing.
I freely and heartily yield all things
To your pleasure and disposal.
And now, O glorious and blessed God,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
You are mine, and I am yours. So be it.
And the covenant which I have made on earth,
Let it be ratified in heaven. Amen

God is a master craftsman who can transform our brokenness

November 10, 2014

An absolutely beautiful reflection “The Beauty of Brokenness” today from Christine Sine at Godspace.  (Christine posts reflective prayer exercises / meditations every Monday.)  The post begins with a discussion of the Japanese art of Kintsugi, the art of mending broken pottery with lacquer resin sprinkled with powdered gold, or silver or platinum.

Here’s part of the closing prayer / meditative exercise which is part of the post:

What is one broken area in which you still long to see transformation and wholeness? Name it and lift it up before God in prayer. Ask God to act as the master craftsman mending and making whole your brokenness.

I encourage you to go read / watch it all!


Charles Spurgeon: We Have No Strength in Ourselves

November 5, 2014

An excerpt of a prayer by Charles Spurgeon acknowledging that we need God’s grace even to ask for grace!  I forget that all too often….

We would bless Thee for all the mercies with which Thou dost surround us, for all things which our eyes see that are pleasant, which our ears hear that are agreeable, and for everything that maketh existence to be life. Especially do we own this dependence when we come to deal with spiritual things. O God, we are less than nothing in the spiritual world. We do feel this growingly, and yet even to feel this is beyond our power. Thy grace must give us even to know our need of grace. We are not willing to confess our own sinfulness until Thou dost show it to us. Though it stares us in the face our pride denies it, and our own inability is unperceived by us. We steal Thy power and call it our own till Thou dost compel us to say that we have no strength in ourselves.

Spurgeon, Charles. The Pastor In Prayer (Kindle Locations 59-64). GLH Publishing. Kindle Edition.

Note: the book from which I excerpted this prayer is currently onsale at Amazon for only 99 cents (Kindle edition)

A Lenten Prayer by Scotty Smith: Intensify and quench my thirst

March 12, 2014

Pastor Scotty Smith of Christ Community Church Nashville posted a great prayer on thirsting for Jesus this past Sunday, for the first Sunday of Lent – but it is a good prayer to pray ANY day of Lent.

Here’s an excerpt:

Thirst will not be denied. We’ll do almost anything to satisfy its cry and ache.

Because this is true, we join the psalmist in crying out: Jesus, intensify our thirst for you. Keep us panting like the deer, which pants after streams of water—the unpolluted, un-distilled, never-ending brooks of your grace.

Quickly drain the broken cisterns of our own making. Don’t let us be even momentarily satisfied with any other beverage than the draft you draw, the potion you pour, the life-giving libation you alone can give.

If we take up King David’s lament, “When can I go and meet with God?” you answer back without delay, “Right now, my beloved; do not wait. If you’re thirsty, come to me and drink.” “Whoever believes in me, streams of living water will flow from within them” (John 7:38).

If we should say, “But Jesus, where can we find you?” you answer back even quicker, “Not in the law; not in your strivings; not in your labors; not in your penance; not in your earnestness; not in your self-loathing; not in your re-dedications; not in your vain promises; but only in the gospel of my grace.”

Go read the whole prayer

You can find more great Lent prayers from Scotty Smith’s Heavanward blog here.

Bath and Wells

December 12, 2013

The next Bishop of Bath and Wells will be the Rt Revd Peter Hancock.

Ezekiel 47:1-6 (NIV)
The River From the Temple

The man brought me back to the entrance to the temple, and I saw water coming out from under the threshold of the temple toward the east (for the temple faced east). The water was coming down from under the south side of the temple, south of the altar. . . . ankle-deep. . . . knee-deep . . . . up to the waist. . . . now it was a river that I could not cross, because the water had risen and was deep enough to swim in—a river that no one could cross. He asked me, “Son of man, do you see this?”

Our Father in heaven,

We cry out for the pure river of the water of life in Bath and Wells. We thank You that Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her. We thank You that He sanctifies and cleanses her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. May it be so in Bath and Wells!

Holy Spirit, well up in Bishop Peter Hancock and in the Diocese of Bath and Wells.

Just as Ezekiel saw a great number of trees on each side of the river flowing from the temple, we ask for a great number of men and women who walk not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stand in the path of sinners, nor sit in the seat of the scornful; but who delight in the law of the Lord.

Holy Spirit, well up in Bishop Peter Hancock and in the Diocese of Bath and Wells.

When the river in Ezekiel’s vision empties into the sea, the salty water becomes fresh, and swarms of living creatures live wherever the river flows. We pray that the living water flowing from the diocese of Bath and Wells will vivify Your church and bring a great ingathering of souls.

Holy Spirit, well up in Bishop Peter Hancock and in the Diocese of Bath and Wells.

In Ezekiel’s vision, fruit trees of all kinds grow on both banks of the river. Their leaves do not wither, nor do their fruit fail. We pray that every month the Diocese of Bath and Wells will bear fruit. Because of the belief of her people, out of their innermost being will continuously flow springs of living water, yielding fruit of nourishment and healing.

Holy Spirit, well up in Bishop Peter Hancock and in the Diocese of Bath and Wells.

Father, we humbly beseech You that a river will flow out of the Lord’s house in Bath and Wells like the river in Ezekiel’s vision. May Your kingdom come and Your will be done in the Diocese of Bath and Wells, the Church of England, and the Anglican Communion.

Holy Spirit, well up in Bishop Peter Hancock and in the Diocese of Bath and Wells. Amen.

Note: Previous prayers for Glastonbury, located in the Diocese of Bath and Wells, are found here.

From our archives and reposted for GAFCON – Walking in the Light, the East African revival

October 22, 2013

Back in January 2009, in conjunction with a prayer campaign we were running here at L&B for the Primates’ Meeting in Alexandria Egypt, my colleague Jill W. wrote a post about the East African Revival.  With all the talk of the East African Revival today at GAFCON, there were some folks searching on Anglican East African Revival, and so the following post got a number of hits and caught my eye tonight.  It seemed very apt to reblog this tonight and adapt it for use in praying for GAFCON.

The East African Revival–Walking in the Light

One of the great themes of the East African Revival was the view that true Christian conversion must be accompanied by a contrite confession of sin. After being convicted of their wrongs by the preaching of the cross, believers should be willing to give public testimony to what Christ has done in their lives and be willing to make restitution to anyone who has been harmed by their sins. There is a plethora of stories in East Africa of new believers returning things that had been stolen, or confessing past ethnic hatred or sexual misconduct. Such a confession must be accompanied by a willingness to lead a new life of honesty and openess, a lifestyle described as ‘walking in the light.’

If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.1 John 1:6-7

This revival, which began in 1929, spread from Rwanda to Uganda and Kenya. Also, Burundi and Tanzania were affected. It shaped the Protestant church in eastern Africa, and it has also helped shape the current Anglican crisis. The primate of Rwanda, Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini, moved by what he coined “spiritual genocide” in the Episcopal Church, was involved in the establishment of the Anglican Mission in America. After the consecration of Gene Robinson, the primate of Uganda, Archbishop Henry Luke Orombi, with his bishops broke communion with TEC and refused to accept any official monies from her, and Archbishop Benjamin Nzimbi of Kenya said, “Repentance must begin with the leadership. The church leadership must repent. Are the bishops role models? And the theological seminaries? . . . ECUSA has kicked itself out of the Anglican Communion. You can act in such a way to kick yourself out. It pains us because we want to have everyone in the communion. It is the leaders that are responsible.”

Lord God Almighty,
Unbound by time, You set a light on a hill for this present darkness. We thank You for the East African Revival. We thank You for the light that shines from Mt. Kilimanjaro, across the Serengeti, to the headwaters of the Nile, and down the East African Rift. […] may there break out in [GAFCON] a revival that will spread throughout the Anglican Communion.

Bright Morning Star, may a new day dawn in the Communion–a day of contrition and restitution, a day of repentance and testimony. We cry out, May [the GAFCON attendees and Anglicans throughout the world] revere Your name! Sun of Righteousness, rise with healing in Your wings.

Bright Morning Star, we honor Your name. Heal the Anglican Communion! Lead Your angel-armies and free us from this bondage. May the [GAFCON delegates] leave the meeting, leaping with joy and bursting with energy, like calves released from the stall.

Bright Morning Star, we want to walk in Your light. Amen.

Psalm 107:33-38

May 18, 2013

He turns rivers into a wilderness, and the watersprings into dry ground; a fruitful land into barrenness, for the wickedness of those who dwell in it. He turns a wilderness into pools of water, and dry land into watersprings. There he makes the hungry dwell, that they may establish a city for a dwelling place, and sow fields and plant vineyards, that they may yield a fruitful harvest. He also blesses them, and they multiply greatly; and he does not let their cattle decrease. (Psalm 107:33-38 )
      Holy Spirit, come and turn our parched and dry churches into pools of living water where your people may find refreshment and healing and restoration. Renew in our day the wonders of your Pentecost.

            A Watered Garden, by W. B. Anderson, 1919
      I have a precious memory. It is the memory of a garden that I happened upon one tired midsummer’s morning, in the midst of a torrid plain in India. I was weary, and travel-stained, and thirsty, when over the drooping head of the horse, I saw a clump of trees on the far horizon. I hoped it might be a garden. It seemed ages until we should reach it. When we did arrive under the spreading branches of great mango trees, a cool zephyr, as grateful as the fanning of angels’ wings, rippled over my parched cheeks. It was still early in the day, when, swinging myself wearily from the hard seat of the springless yekka, I walked straight into the heart of the garden, down the shady aisle of mango and loquat trees. Before dawn there had been a shower of rain, and now the gardener was running the clear, cool water from the irrigating well all about among trees and shrubs. Everywhere leaves were green and flowers were bright. Parrots circled through the cloudless blue, swung upon the swaying branches, calling merrily to one another. The air was ladened with the intoxicating odors of roses and jasmine. The fountain sparkled laughingly in the shaded center of the garden. I stooped to bathe my hands and face in the cool waters of the fountain’s basin. Then, from its joyous spring I drank until satisfied. I sat for a few precious moments upon the marble edge of the fountain and reveled in the refreshment of a watered garden. The driver called, and I hurried out again across the stifling, heated plain. I had tarried for so short a time, but I was a new man. I carried away the song of the garden in my heart, and its echoes shall never die from my life.
      I was making the same journey in another year. The road was more uninviting than before, the weather was hotter, and I was not only weary, but ill. But I had a memory! For hours I looked and longed for the place of the garden of refreshing. At last we came to the shade of its trees. Wearily and weakly, but eagerly, I climbed from the seat of the torturing, springless cart. With unsteady steps I entered the door of the garden. The trees were gray with dust. The flowers drooped in the heat. The little water courses were parched and dry. The fountain was stopped. My soul sank with weariness, and I turned away sick at heart to finish the torturing journey unrefreshed. At the door I met the gardener. I asked him why his garden languished so. He explained with guilty look that he had been absent attending to affairs of his own for a week. I asked him if the raja would not be vexed at the neglect of his garden. He explained that the raja had gone to the mountains for a month. Then I knew that the garden had been neglected because the master’s orders had been disobeyed. He intended that every traveler might be refreshed; but his gardener had not been faithful.
      I have a precious memory. It is a memory of a friend. Sin-stricken and weary, and far from God, I was traveling one day when I came into his life. His whole life was wet with the dews of Heaven; his garments were redolent with the odors of Paradise; he just breathed the very life of God. I sat and communed with him, and from within his life there flowed into mine rivers of living water. I walked with him through lovely avenues of restful shade in his friendship, and saw heavenly vistas, and drank from life-giving springs. I went out to my life renewed and refreshed. I was a new man, and there rang through all my being a song of the memory of that blessed life. All through eternity shall the echoes of that friendship call from peak to peak for me.
      In time of need and anguish I came again to that friend. I ran to meet him as a shelter from my sore distress. I found him and entered into communion with him. But the fountains of his life seemed dried up. The refreshment seemed to have vanished. His own life seemed parched and drooping. His speech was as the speech of other men. I struggled back to my own life as I came. Later he told me that the King of his life was not being obeyed, and the garden of his heart was not being watered.. The trees and the walks of his friendship were still there, but they no longer soothed and strengthened. The fountain of his friendship was still there, but its waters had been hushed. The King had intended that this garden, this life, should be kept perpetually refreshing for the souls of all who might come to it, but the King had not been obeyed, and the living water had not been kept flowing, and I went away unrefreshed.
      Then I prayed, “Oh God, keep flowing into me, and within me, and from within me Thy rivers of living water for the health and joy of other men! Oh, King of life, make my life a watered garden!”

A word received: Bring the wounded and those in pain to me. Be like those four men who lowered their friend through the roof to me.

Saturday: 107:33-43, 108:1-6(7-13) * –; Ezek. 43:1-12; Heb. 9:1-14; Luke 11:14-23
Eve of Pentecost; –; * 33; Exod. 19:3-8a,16-20; 1 Pet. 2:4-10
The Day of Pentecost; 118 * 145; Isa. 11:1-9; 1 Cor. 2:1-13; John 14:21-29
Day of Pentecost
Early or Vigil Service: 33:12-22 or 130 or 104:25-32; Genesis 11:1-9 or Exodus 19:1-9a,16-20a, 20:18-20 or Ezekiel 37:1-14 or Joel 2:28-32; Acts 2:1-11 or Romans 8:14-17,22-27; John 7:37-39a
Principal Service: 104:25-37 or 104:25-32 or or 33:12-15,18-22; Acts 2:1-11 or Joel 2:28-32; 1 Corinthians 12:4-13 or Acts 2:1-11; John 20:19-23 or John 14:8-17

Albany Intercessor

Invite the good guest after evicting the trashing tennants

November 3, 2012

Here is a useful prayer journal reflection by Christian leadership coach Dave Kraft.

His thoughts contain sound advice for spiritual warfare. Some additional thoughts from L&B:

Knowing our weaknesses, confessing them and repenting of them is an essential part of prayer.

Yet it is vitally important that we be filled and re-filled as well. The evil one waits to reoccupy spiritually empty people:

“When the unclean spirit has gone out of a person, it passes through waterless places seeking rest, but finds none. Then it says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when it comes, it finds the house empty, swept, and put in order. Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they enter and dwell there, and the last state of that person is worse than the first. So also will it be with this evil generation.” (Matthew 12:43-45 ESV)

That’s the warning, but Jesus gives positive instruction as well:

What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” (Luke 11:11-13 ESV)

Father, help us to evict the world, the flesh and the devil, who we’ve foolishly allowed as squatters in our souls. Send us your Holy Spirit to fill us with the life of Jesus, who stands at our door and knocks.

Thank you, Father, for the grace by which you make us into Temples of the Holy Spirit and transform us into living stones built on Jesus, in whose name we pray. Amen.

Binding and loosing

September 30, 2012

I recently heard a teaching on binding and loosing by Robert Westberry, a missionary to Fiji. We are three parts–body, soul, and spirit. He emphasized that we cannot take offense and reminded us of the silence of Jesus before His accusers. When we take offense, we create wounds on our soul. These wounds then distract us from the direction of the Holy Spirit within our spirits.
‘Loosing’ is like doing surgery on oneself, cutting out those things that are not of God. ‘Binding’ God brings healing to the weak places. This prayer incorporates some of the concepts I learned. Note the similarity to St. Patrick’s breastplate.–JW

Triune God,

I bind unto my will this day the will of the Father,
I bind unto my mind the mind of Christ,
I bind unto my spirit the fullness of the revelation of the Holy Spirit in scripture.

I bind unto myself the forgiveness of Christ and loose the offenses I harbor, especially _____.
I bind unto myself the security of Christ and loose my insecurity.
I bind unto myself the peace of Christ and loose my anger.
I bind unto myself the appetite of Christ and loose my gluttony.
I bind unto myself the wisdom of Christ and loose my foolishness.
I bind unto myself the love of Christ and loose my fear and anxiety.

I invite Christ into every aspect of my being, seen and unseen, known and unknown. Christ reign in my body, soul, and spirit. Christ! Christ! Christ!

I bind unto myself the knowledge that I am, by the grace of God and the blood of Christ shed for me, His beloved child, and I loose my orphan spirit. It is the Father’s good pleasure to give me the kingdom. Amen.

Labor Day

September 3, 2012

Ecclesiastes 11:5-6(MSG)
Just as you’ll never understand the mystery of life forming in a pregnant woman, So you’ll never understand the mystery at work in all that God does. Go to work in the morning and stick to it until evening without watching the clock. You never know from moment to moment how your work will turn out in the end.

Dear Jesus,
You fed thousands of people without labor. You paid your taxes by catching a fish. You are the Lord of rest, and you provide miracles of rest.
Help us to watch with You and work with You. Open our eyes to the unforced rhythms of grace; yoke us, body, soul, and spirit, to You. In You, we find rest for our souls. Amen.


September 2, 2012

In the Hebrew calendar, we are in the month of Elul (Aug 19-Sep 16). From chabad.org:

As the last month of the Jewish year, Elul is traditionally a time of introspection and stocktaking—a time to review one’s deeds and spiritual progress over the past year, and prepare for the upcoming “Days of Awe” of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. . .
The following are some of the basic customs and practices for the month of Elul:

Each day of the month of Elul (except for Shabbat and the last day of Elul), we sound the shofar (ram’s horn) as a call to repentance.

When writing a letter or meeting one another, we bless one another by including the greeting Ketivah vachatimah tovah—which roughly translates as “May you be inscribed and sealed for a good year.”

Chapter 27 of the Book of Psalms is added to the daily prayers, in the morning and afternoon.

Father in heaven,
What woeful sinners we are. We thank You for the Holy Spirit that pierces our hearts. We thank You for the Holy Scripture that shapes our hearts. We thank You for the gift of repentance. We thank You that this is a favorable time for repentance.
Lord God Almighty, our bodies are clay jars holding the treasure of the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ. Cast our minds into the mind of Christ that they be set apart and useful for honorable and noble purposes, consecrated and profitable to You, fit and ready for any good work. Inscribe us and seal us for a good year. Amen.
2 Corinthians 4:6-7, Philippians 2:5, 2 Timothy 2:21

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