Father, may you fill me with the knowledge of your will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that I may live a life worthy of you and please you in every way, bearing fruit in every good work and growing in your grace, strengthened with all power according to your glorious might, so that I may have great endurance and patience with joy.
Prayer of the Bible
How lovely are your dwellings, O Lord of hosts! My soul longs and even faints for your courts; my heart and my flesh cry out for you, the living God.
(Free expression of praise and thanksgiving to God)
Confession of Sin
Come, thou long expected Jesus, born to set thy people free;
from our fears and sins release us, let us find our rest in thee.
-Charles Wesley (1707-1788)
(Time of silence for confession of sin)
The Words of Jesus
And all of the country of Judea and all Jerusalem were going out to him and were being baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. Now John was clothed with camel’s hair and wore a leather belt around his waist and ate locusts and wild honey. And he preached, saying, “After me comes he who is mightier than I, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I have baptized you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
-Mark 1: 5-8
(Think deeply on these life-giving words of Jesus)
Prayers for Ourselves and Others
Almighty and everlasting God, mercifully look upon our infirmities, and in all our dangers and necessities stretch forth thy right hand to help and defend us; through Christ our Lord. Amen.
-Book of Common Prayer
(Time to bring before God our own needs and the needs of others)
Be with us in our silence and in our speech,
in our haste and in our leisure,
in company and in solitude,
in freshness of the morning and
in weariness of the evening;
and give us grace at all times humbly to rejoice in Thy mysterious companionship.
-John Baillie (1886-1960)