O God, teach me to breathe deeply in faith.
-Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855)
Prayer of the Bible
The Lord has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all. Bless the Lord, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word, obeying the voice of his word! Bless the Lord, all his hosts, his ministers, who do his will! Bless the Lord, all his works, in all places of his dominion. Bless the Lord, O my soul!
-Psalm 103: 19-22
(Free expression of praise and thanksgiving to God)
Confession of Sin
Lord may you establish my heart as blameless and holy in your presence at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints.
-1 Thessalonians 3:13
(Time of silence for confession of sin)
The Words of Jesus
Now there were some Greeks among those who went up to worship at the festival. They came to Philip, with a request. “Sir,” they said, “we would like to see Jesus.” Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.
-John 12: 20-26
(Think deeply on these life-giving words of Jesus)
Prayers for Ourselves and Others
Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.
(Time to bring before God our own needs and the needs of others)
Dear Father in heaven, we seek you and your kingdom. We gather to hear your Word so that we may receive strength for our own lives and for all our relationships with others. We want to stand firm, believing that in everything your will is being done and that we may yet experience a new coming of your glory on earth. Then earthly concerns will no longer torment us and wear us out, but heavenly things may surround us and everything become new in accordance with your good, merciful, and perfect will. Amen.
-Christoph Friedrich Blumhardt (1842-1919)