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Joy to the World: A Christmas Prayer

Joy to the world, the Lord is come!

Father, forgive our foolishness and stubbornness in seeking joy in all the wrong places.

We look for joy in riches, we look for joy in parties and celebrations, we look for joy in successes.

We look for joy in drinks and drugs, in sex, in the victory of sports, in buying and selling, in spiritual experiences that comfort and excite.

Guide us to true Joy, that can only come from You; joy that comes into the world and invites us to receive You as King.

Joy to the earth, the Savior reigns!

Reign in my life, reign in our lives, reign on earth, as it is in heaven, that all Your creation will take joy in You and Your salvation offered to all through Jesus Christ, Your Son. May we truly glorify and enjoy You forever.

No more let sins and sorrows grow…

Replace our anxieties and fears with joyful trust in You and let the latent distrust that leads to sin be conquered through the love of Your reigning Lordship in our lives and in the world.

Replace our sorrows and mourning with praise and gratitude for Your constant Presence, strength and comfort.

He rules the world with truth and grace…

We give thanks O God, that You rule the world.

We give thanks O God, that You rule with truth and that You lead us to the truth that sets us free.

We give thanks O God, that You rule with grace and that we are led by Your love and goodness that we do not deserve and cannot earn.

Amen.

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Posted by on December 24, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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A short prayer for a friend in need

Lord, have mercy.

Give strength where strength is needed,

peace in the midst of storm,

and rest for all who love well and serve from an open and honest heart.

Amen.

 
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Posted by on September 8, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Song of Grief – (July 21, 1997)

I sit here, I’m crying, I’m missing you.

My heart aches, my soul grieves in losing you.

And I pray that I may know that its okay,

But inside it simply doesn’t feel that way.

For I’m longing to hear your voice, to touch your hand again.

 

Lord God, Why? Is my questioning.

Yet questions, even answers, don’t take the pain.

I can’t imagine living without you,

It is not a thing I even want to do.

For I’m longing to hear your voice, to touch your hand again.

 

Lord, help me trust in you,

May I find my hope in you.

Though I do not understand

Give me faith to walk thorough valleys of unknown.

 

I sit here, I’m crying, I’m missing you.

I know you are somewhere else, there’s no touch for now.

Yet, my memories will never fade away,

and I will keep them with me to my dying day.

And then will hear your voice

and touch your hand again.

 
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Posted by on July 21, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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I will give thanks to you forever – A prayer based on Psalm 30

O Lord, my God, I will give thanks to You forever!

For I have known the reality and feelings of potential loss in all areas of my life; yet You have drawn me up from the pit.

O Lord, my God, I will give thanks to You forever!

For I cried out to You and You have healed and restored me.

O Lord, my God, I will give thanks to You forever!

For You have brought me through the weeping and mourning of potential disaster and loss of life as I have known it and brought me to a place of joy.

O Lord, my God, I will give thanks to You forever!

The sackcloth gone, the coat of joyous colors now my clothes, my silent distressed heart now gives full blown praise;

O Lord, my God, I will give thanks to You forever!

 
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Posted by on June 26, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Mother’s Day Prayer

Our Heavenly Father, giver of all good gifts, we give thanks to you this day for your gift of mothers.  We thank you for our mothers, we thank you for all mothers, and we thank you for those women in our lives who are not are mothers, yet in spirit and in action reach out and care for us as a mother would. We thank you for mothers who have been an example to us of the Christians Faith, those who are led by the Spirit of God in their lives.

Grant that we might be more appreciative of all that mothers do for us.  Grant that we might speak words of thanks and love more often and words of complaint much less.

For the mothers of our lives we pray your blessings of peace and joy; strengthen them in faith, in hope, and in love.  Encourage them in days when they feel overwhelmed with the many tasks and problems of life.  Encourage them when they feel insecure, insufficient for the job, like they have failed.  Lift their eyes beyond the moments of a particular day and help them to see the big picture of mothering along with the successes that are theirs in raising and caring for us their children and their families, as well as those who they have influenced beyond their own families.

  •  Father, we pray for those whose mothers have finished  life’s course. Comfort all who grieve the loss of their mother’s this day.
  • We pray for mothers today, who have lost a child, knowing that a day like mother’s day can open the wounds of grief and pain as they are reminded.  We pray for the many mothers of this country and the world who mourn today, because they have lost a son or daughter in the battles and fighting of war.  Bring your strength, comfort, and      assurances to those who need you today due to such a great loss.
  • For those women who desire greatly to be mothers, but  have not been able to bear children, grant them your peace and grace that they may discover your goodness and joy in their lives.
  • We pray for any who have never known their birth mothers.  Grant them peace in the unknown things of life and grant that they might take joy in those who have been mothers to them in spirit and in action.
  • We pray for those mothers we know who have yet to accept your salvation, may their hearts be opened unto you.
  • For any who have tensions and struggles in their relationship with their mothers, grant this day to be an opportunity for new life and reconciliation.  May love conquer a multitude of sins, may love bring new life.

Father, we know that none can live out a godly and righteous life without you, so pour out your Holy Spirit upon our mothers and all women who seek to serve you in love.  May their lives find satisfaction and deep joy in serving you and your purposes in this world.

We worship you and honor you today O Lord, thanking you for your beautiful and holy design of motherhood and its impact on our lives. Father, you are the giver of all gifts.  Today we thank you for our mothers, bless them today and always through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 
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Posted by on May 6, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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“Can’t this life of faith just be easier?”

Lord, why do you seem so far from me?  Have I moved from you?

I am tired Lord:  tired of striving, tired of thinking, tired of analyzing, tired of fighting within. Can’t this life of faith just be easier; not so much to think about, feel about, wonder about all the time?

I serve You, but I question whether I serve or if it is You I serve at all. I love You,  yet I question whether it is You I love or if I love at all.  I praise You, but I question my motives. It seems as if I am never free to just live in freedom from some deeper thinking or questioning. Sometimes I feel like a mad man!  Does any one else feel it too.

O God, hear my prayer; draw near to me, encourage me, deliver me from sin, bring me a deep satisfaction and joy in knowing You. Let me bask in Your love and learn of the delights of living in Your Loving Presence every moment. Let me live as a loving person because I live continually in Your Loving Presence.

Amen.

 
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Posted by on December 5, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Contemporary Prayers on Psalm 23

The Lord is my shepherd I shall not want

I want! Lord, I want! 

I want happiness in my life. I want freedom from fatigue and tiredness.

I want a job that fulfills my life.

I want to feel good.

I want stuff: A keyboard, with 88 weighted keys, and a thousand voices, and a nice amp.  A video camera, fancy software, and all the stuff to make movies.    I want clothes, and cars, and food, and toys, and stuff.

I want to be a good pastor and shepherd.

I want people to like me and think well of me.

I want to be a good husband and father, all the time, everyday.

I want to be free from sin, evil thoughts, temptations, and the like.

I want to be free from drivenness, from perfection that tells me everything has to be just right.

I want to be free to be me.

 I want Lord! I want!

Yet, because You are my shepherd, I release all my want to You, letting go to You, trusting in You. I have everything; I have all that I need.

He makes me to lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside still waters,

O Lord, make me lie down, lead me to still waters.

For I am up and around; like Martha who would serve instead of sit.I am doing things, doing this and that for You Lord; don’t You see. And yet there is no rest, for the service is never done, and in the midst of it all…I begin to wonder if I serve You at all. 

Make me to lie down, over there Lord; in green pastures,

the ones that you have grown, the ones that don’t require my work.

Lead me, beside still waters, for my days have been like a rushing river, after the clouds opened up on the earth.

The pace has been swift and endless, life has been whitewaters.

So lead me beside still waters.  Peaceful waters.

He restores my soul

Restore Lord.  Yes! Restore!

He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name sake.

Guide me O Lord, in paths of righteousness.

For living in a world of unrighteousness tempts me and calls me to unrighteous living:  in thought, in motive, in plan, in action, in desire, in reality. 

I am not righteous…I cannot stay on the path without Your grace.

Lord, be my guide.  Lord, be my righteousness. Lead me in Your way, for the glory of Your name.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me. Your rod and Your staff they comfort me.

The shadow of death? Lord, most certainly I have not been there myself. O yes, I have been there with others at death. I have been to many funerals. I have seen my own mother dying and dead.

Perhaps I should be aware of just how petty are most of my complaints, for I have life and have yet to walk through that great valley. 

And yet Lord, I cry out for Your presence, for Your comfort, for I fear much:

I fear my life will have no significance in the end.

I fear I will not be all I was meant to be.

I fear to do the things that will help me to become.

I fear the displeasure of the people under my care.

I fear I will mess up bad.

I fear I will be seen as evil rather than good, by the very ones I try so hard to touch with your care.

I fear I will fail as husband, father, pastor, man.

I fear so much.

Only Your presence can cast away the evil. Only Your presence can help me to walk in the valleys that are dark. Only Your presence can sustain me. Comfort me now O my Lord and Shepherd. Restore my soul!

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.  You anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows. 

In the midst of it all O Lord, all of life, all of joy, all of sorrow, all of struggle, all of pastoral work, all of discouragement and sadness, all of hurt and burnout.

You, O Lord, prepare a table.

May your goodness and grace cause me to sit and eat at the table you have prepared.

O for the time at your table…let me not be lost to it. Let me not lose sight of it. Let me linger long at Your table. Let’s eat together.  A full set of courses. Let us eat and drink together in joy. May Your presence make each bite taste delicious, each sip be sweeter than the one before.

Let the meal be long.  Long and wonderful. And I shall lick my fingers in joy and delight. For it is the table You have prepared.

Yes Lord, You restore my soul!

Surely goodness and love shall follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

All praise to You my Lord, my Shepherd:

For You restore my soul.

When I come to the end and think that all is in ruins, all has lost rhyme and reason, I discover truly, Your Presence changes me, changes my mind, my heart, my life. You restore my soul.

For all of my days are in Your hands, embraced by your goodness and love. In You I have a future, forever.

Amen.

 
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Posted by on November 27, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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