You are behind me and before me, O God. You lay your hand upon me.
Prayer of the Bible
Again one having the appearance of a man touched me and strengthened me. And he said, “O man greatly loved, fear not, peace be with you; be strong and of good courage.” And as he spoke to me, I was strengthened
(Free expression of praise and thanksgiving to God)
Confession of Sin
Show me, O LORD, my life's end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life. You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Each man's life is but a breath. Man is a mere phantom as he goes to and fro: He bustles about, but only in vain; he heaps up wealth, not knowing who will get it. But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you. Save me from all my sins
(Time of silence for confession of sin)
The Words of Jesus
Jesus’ mother and his brothers came, and standing outside they sent to him and called him. And a crowd was sitting around him, and they said to him, “Your mother and your brothers are outside, seeking you.” And he answered them, “Who are my mother and my brothers?” And looking about at those who sat around him, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of God, he is my brother and sister and mother.”
(Think deeply on these life-giving words of Jesus)
Prayers for Ourselves and Others
Oh, God, listen to my prayer; please open your ears.
(Time to bring before God our own needs and the needs of others)
O Loving God, to turn away from you is to fall, to turn towards you is to rise, and to stand before you is to live forever. Grant us, dear God, in all our work, your help; in all our uncertainties, your guidance;
In all our dangers, your protection; in all our sorrows, your peace. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
-Augustine of Hippo (354-430)