God, teach me lessons for living so I can stay the course. Give me insight so I can do what you tell me. Let my whole life be one long, obedient response.
Prayer of the Bible
It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees. Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey your word. I know, Lord, that your laws are righteous, and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me.
-Psalm 119: 67, 71, 75
(Free expression of praise and thanksgiving to God)
Confession of Sin
Thanks be to you O God that I have risen this day to the rising of this life itself. May it be a day of blessing, O God of every gift, a day of new beginnings given. Help me to avoid every sin, and the source of every sin to forsake and as the mist scatters from the crest of the hills may each ill haze clear from my soul.
-Prayer from Iona Community
(Time of silence for confession of sin)
The Words of Jesus
I know that you are offspring of Abraham; yet you seek to kill me because my word finds no place in you. I speak of what I have seen with my Father, and you do what you have heard from your father.” They answered him, “Abraham is our father.” Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham's children, you would be doing the works Abraham did, but now you seek to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. This is not what Abraham did.
(Think deeply on these life-giving words of Jesus)
Prayers for Ourselves and Others
When two of you get together on anything at all on earth and make a prayer of it, my Father in heaven goes into action.
(Time to bring before God our own needs and the needs of others)
O Holy Spirit, give me faith that will protect me from despair, from passions, and from vice; give me such love for God and men as will blot out all hatred and bitterness; give me the hope that will deliver me from fear and faint-heartedness.
-Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906-1945)