Our Daily Prayers

Prayer is not a one time thing, reserved for only one moment of time a day. It is an ongoing conversation with God, a call to action, a cry for help, a need to be heard.

These are the prayers you have asked to be shared today… .

These are my prayers. These are moments I when have called out to God. If you have been in those moments with me, I ask you to pray once what I call out twice. As the moments change, so too will the refrains.

In the morning when I wake, I give thanks Alleluia! This is the day the Lord has made.

I see someone I love, eat something, drink something, I bow my head Thanks be to God.

I am afraid, anxious, lonely, questioning my worth, I look inward Father, I am yours.

I am worried and I cannot stop my fearful thoughts, I plead Holy Spirit, take this from me.

I am isolated, I call out Lord, hold me.

I am torn and cannot make decisions, I cry Lord, use me.

I am weak and drawn to sin, I pray Jesus, give me strength.

I have sinned and seek forgiveness, I beg Lord have mercy.

I am unsure of which path to take, I ask Lord, guide me.

I have heard your voice when I have done your will, I proclaim Holy Spirit, thank you for using me

I am worthless, I cry Oh my God, help me

I am struggling, I sob Jesus, I need you

I am alone, I whisper God be with me

I need courage to do your will. I pray Your will be done.

And at the end of the day as I lie down to sleep, I am a child of God and offer the Holy Spirit the last breath of my waking day in a simple prayer:

Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep. In the morning when I wake, the Lord’s path I will surely take

Amen

 

We welcome Jesus into our lives

Sept 2019, Prayers of the People

WE WELCOME JESUS INTO OUR LIVES. Lord hear our prayer

We submit our will to you, Lord, to do your works. We will be yours and seek your wisdom, love and guidance in all we do. WE WELCOME JESUS INTO OUR LIVES

We need you God. We need your presence, patience and love working in us, so we may see how we can make a difference in the world. WE WELCOME JESUS INTO OUR LIVES

Where we need to be sustained, delivered, changed or made whole, please fill us with your spirit. For lives that have been impacted by violence, grant healing and peace. WE WELCOME JESUS INTO OUR LIVES

Help us to walk before you in love for each of your creations, fearlessly proclaiming your glory, that all may know of the good things you provide and of our love for you. WE WELCOME JESUS INTO OUR LIVES

Show us the path to prayer and action, that we may make a difference in the lives of others in your name, especially for those around the world who deal with fire, flood, tornado, earthquake and famine. WE WELCOME JESUS INTO OUR LIVES

Release us from the fear and despair that paralyze us and stand in our way of working your will. May we work miracles in your name. WE WELCOME JESUS INTO OUR LIVES

Nurture us as we grow your community with our time, talents and treasures, and reveal how every deed committed in your name is good. WE WELCOME JESUS INTO OUR LIVES

Oh my God, I am your neighbour

Nov 5, 2017, Prayers of the People

Practice mercy. Be compassionate. Bring peace.  Reconcile.  Care. Give. Forgive. Practice nonviolence. Be kind. Act justly. Friendship. Sacrifice. Respect. Advocate. Commit. Dignify. Build Community. Welcome. Be gracious. Honour. Accompany.

This is a challenging way to live. We need some prayers to make it happen. Our call and response is: Oh my God, I am your neighbour. I will love you and serve you, Oh my God.

I am new to this world and so easy to love. I am an infant. My eyes are big and beautiful, I smile when I hear your voice. You shelter me in your arms, do your best to feed me and keep me safe from harm. I am afraid of loud noises, big things I have no words for, and that you will leave me and I will die alone and afraid.  OH MY GOD, I AM YOUR NEIGHBOUR. I WILL LOVE YOU AND SERVE YOU, OH MY GOD.

I will be ten soon. I got an A on my math test. My best friend’s mom and dad are fighting all the time and she’s afraid they will hit her too. I tell her that she can come over to my house after school for a break. A kid in kindergarten fell off the monkey-bars, so I walked him to the office. The breakfast programme closed down because there weren’t enough volunteers, but sometimes I have enough to share. The book drive at the mall got us 500 new books for our library. My big brother says high school is great. OH MY GOD, I AM YOUR NEIGHBOUR. I WILL LOVE YOU AND SERVE YOU, OH MY GOD.

Being a teenager sucks, God! My clothes don’t fit, my body keeps changing, my face keeps breaking out and my parents won’t let me sleep in. There is this guy that I like but he’ll only go out with me if no-one will find out, so I told him to take a hike, like my mom said. There is this girl who talks about killing herself, so I told my teacher and they are going to get her help. Shop class is amazing-I got to use a chop saw and a drill press to make a clothespin. I’m going to give it to my grandfather, he’s in the hospital. My friends make fun of me because I still go to church with my family, but some of the university students are pretty cool. I can’t wait to go to university. OH MY GOD, I AM YOUR NEIGHBOUR. I WILL LOVE YOU AND SERVE YOU, OH MY GOD.

Oh God! Why did I ever want to go to university? I am so stupid. All these other guys seem to know how to get the work done and have a life and I feel like a loser. I use the peer tutor programme, so that helps sometimes, and I joined a club, so I don’t feel so alone anymore, but still. I am so thankful for the Open Table meals that the churches offer; sometimes it’s the only time I get to eat a decent salad all month. My bestie fell pregnant, so we talked for hours and hours about what she is going to do. She knows I’ll help out in any way I can. I can’t wait to be out of school. OH MY GOD, I AM YOUR NEIGHBOUR. I WILL LOVE YOU AND SERVE YOU, OH MY GOD.

So, this is what the military is like. What a mess! Not here, but out there. This peacekeeping mission is scary stuff. There are these IEDs, and it feels like every time I turn around, someone is getting hurt or dying. Last week, my friend’s tank lost a track and it just flew right off the bridge, killing him instantly. We sent his stuff home to his mom with a card we all signed. Rest in Peace, buddy. We’re thinking of you and all the ones we’ve lost. OH MY GOD, I AM YOUR NEIGHBOUR. I WILL LOVE YOU AND SERVE YOU, OH MY GOD.

This working and family thing is crazy, God! The baby doesn’t sleep so I am tired all the time. My boss is always on my back about keeping my numbers up, but then the customer service suffers and she complains about that! I can’t win. Our new home is fantastic. I never knew we needed so many things to run a household, though. The neighbours mowed our lawn when they found out we didn’t have a mower, and the woman across the street told us about the local parenting group that shares childcare. We can have an extra few kids in the house if it means we can have a few hours to ourselves to sleep. OH MY GOD, I AM YOUR NEIGHBOUR. I WILL LOVE YOU AND SERVE YOU, OH MY GOD.

Oh my God, I blinked and the kids are out of the house. How did that happen? I still feel like I should make sure they are all safely in bed, but they aren’t here anymore. I still volunteer with the local school in their literacy programme and manage the Scouts equipment for our local group. I am worried about retirement, but we have a good saving plan set up that we still contribute to every payday. I hope we won’t need any extra dental or drug coverage, that might bankrupt us. I have so many friends who are sick and in the hospital ………………………………………………. I try and visit, and I keep them in my prayers. OH MY GOD, I AM YOUR NEIGHBOUR. I WILL LOVE YOU AND SERVE YOU, OH MY GOD.

This retirement thing is not for the weak. I have so much to do. I deliver for meals on wheels on Mondays and Tuesdays, volunteer at the day programme at the church on Wednesday and Friday, watch the grandkids on Thursday and play bridge at the senior’s centre a couple of times a week. I’ve been in the hospital a few times with the colon cancer that just won’t go away, but I keep telling the kids I’m fine, just a little tired. I won’t be a drain on the family, they’ve got enough going on. I worry about…………………………..OH MY GOD, I AM YOUR NEIGHBOUR. I WILL LOVE YOU AND SERVE YOU, OH MY GOD.

I have had a great life God. All my life, I have had wondrous neighbours. I know people who practice mercy, are compassionate and who bring peace.  My neighbours reconcile, care, give and forgive. They practice nonviolence, being kind and acting justly. They believe in friendship, sacrifice, respect and advocacy. They are committed individuals who dignify, build community and welcome others to their table. They are gracious, honourable and I have been blessed to be accompanied by them.  Now you welcome me to your eternal kingdom as one of your own. Oh my God, thanks for being my companion, my wellspring and my greatest joy. You are a wonderful neighbour. OH MY GOD, I AM YOUR NEIGHBOUR. I WILL LOVE YOU AND SERVE YOU, OH MY GOD.

We are filled with the Holy Spirit

May 20, 2018 Prayers of the People

We are all together in one place. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

Our children shall prophesy. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We shall see visions. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We shall dream dreams. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We hear what God is saying to us. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We witness the stories of God’s deeds of power. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We call on the name of the Lord to be saved. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We are alone. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We are with friends. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We pray for those whose needs are greater than ours. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

Change is coming. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

Our worship will look different. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We will fearlessly share our faith beyond these walls We are filled with the Holy Spirit

Our stories will be everyone’s stories. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We will bring justice to the world. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

 We will bring peace to the world. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

We will share our love with the world. We are filled with the Holy Spirit

Lord, put our hands to your use

Jan 28, 2018 Prayers of the People

Lord, put our hands to your use; Lord hear our prayer.

These are our hands. We use them when we eat, write, type, drive, talk and bathe. There are many ways to hold them when we pray, and I encourage you to look at your hands and think about them in these prayers. LORD, PUT OUR HANDS TO YOUR USE; LORD HEAR OUR PRAYER.

This is the thumb. It is what sets us apart from the animals. We use it to grasp at things and hold them dear. We pray for the things we hold on to-our health, our families and loved ones, our jobs and homes. We pray for the things we are reaching for-better health, united families, better jobs, safer places to live. LORD, PUT OUR HANDS TO YOUR USE; LORD HEAR OUR PRAYER.

This is the index finger. We use it to point at the things we want. We want and pray for food security for our neighbours and friends throughout the world. We want and pray for healthy affordable housing in safe neighbourhoods in every single community from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. We want and pray for all children to grow up well educated and ready to be part of a vibrant world, to know that they will be paid a fair living wage according to their skills. LORD, PUT OUR HANDS TO YOUR USE; LORD HEAR OUR PRAYER.

This is the middle finger. It is the finger we titter about-the screw the man finger. This is the finger for the difficult prayers, the ‘I hate that guy’ prayers. This is the finger that reminds us to pray for those in power, AND it reminds us of that we need to do to affect change. We pray for the leaders of the church, even those who disagree with us, so we may learn from them. We pray for heads of state, and will use our hands to write, petition and vote when they stray from the Lord’s path. We pray for employers who have wronged us, and for strength to speak against injustice. LORD, PUT OUR HANDS TO YOUR USE; LORD HEAR OUR PRAYER.

This is the ring finger. It’s the weird one, not very strong on its own and it struggles with independence, much like every single one of us. With this finger we pray for the people who hold us up and guide us, though they have their own challenges. We pray for the teachers who show up every day, even when their kids are sick. We pray for the bus drivers who deal with traffic and weather and unruly riders and still get us to work. We pray for the clergy who respond to our needs though they have had funerals, hospital visits and mental health crises to manage as well. We pray for those who help us and that we be given the opportunity to contribute in your name. LORD, PUT OUR HANDS TO YOUR USE; LORD HEAR OUR PRAYER.

This is the pinky finger. It is the little one and some say we use it to pray for the little people, the forgotten and lost, the homeless and at risk, the sick and the dying but they aren’t the little people. They are the ones that close the fist, for whom we fight to make the world better. LORD, PUT OUR HANDS TO YOUR USE; LORD HEAR OUR PRAYER.

These are our hands, Lord. We reach out to our neighbours. We beseech you in prayer. We use our hands to do your work, but sometimes we need help to work together. LORD, PUT OUR HANDS TO YOUR USE; LORD HEAR OUR PRAYER.

We are children of God

My Prayers of the People, July 2017

The Call is “We are led by the Spirit of God” The Response is “We are children of God

Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand WE ARE LED BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD we are the children of God

A weed is a misplaced, unwanted plant. A dandelion is a bee’s first nectar. Poison ivy berries sustain many birds through the winter. Ragweed is used as a smother crop, mulch in garden and can soothe poison ivy rashes. At times, we are all weeds, not wheat. When our purpose is revealed and we are planted in the right spot, we find that we are led by the Spirit of God. WE ARE LED BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD we are the children of God

When we move about in God’s creation, awestruck by fields of wheat, admiring the beauty of a sunrise or sky of stars, we realize that God was in this place and we knew it. When we move about in the land of men, among skyscrapers and stock markets, shopping malls and mannequins, housing developments and poverty, we realize that God was in this place and we didn’t know it. WE ARE LED BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD we are the children of God

What we suffer now in our lives is nothing compared to the Glory God will reveal later. The suffering we EASE now, the good we DO now, the love we SHARE now begins to reveal God’s glory to others. WE ARE LED BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD we are the children of God

In our dealings with each other, how we speak, how we act, how we make people feel anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand, WE ARE LED BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD we are the children of God

We can never escape your Spirit Lord. It is with us in times of loss those loved and beloved….

Your spirit is with us when we are in pain…

Your spirit is with us when we travel as evacuees, asylum seekers, refugees, immigrants, migrants and seekers of truth. WE ARE LED BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD we are the children of God

Lord, you know our anxious thoughts, our fears and weaknesses……………..Lord, you know our strengths, our courage, our faith, our abilities and our actions……………..Help us make the world a better place. WE ARE LED BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD we are the children of God

poetry

dear god

today i have been experiencing poetry and thinking of you. beauty and imagery have spoken to me in your voice. i have heard you everywhere today. my children fought and i heard your voice speaking through me, because it sure wasn’t me bringing them to peace and understanding, reconciliation and joy in each other.

i marveled at the power of words today. often, i struggle with my stepmother, and today i found your words to bring myself to a place where i could just let her be and accept her loneliness and fear without feeling like i had to fix it for her.

i read the poetry in the songs i sang to my children after their evening prayers. it was hard to stop singing. the songs were older canadiana songs and the fierce love of country and the awe of the bounty of the earth and the way relationships wax and wane and renewed were hymns in a different voice.

i sat on the couch with my husband and in the casual conversation of lovers, i heard you and felt you move us closer. the words we spoke were commonplace and everyday and were a gift that i rejoice to receive.

my gift you today god is the poetry that i heard today. those words lifted me up and i can only pass them on to you in joy.

j

fear, anger and breath

dear god

today i am giving you my breath. i have this tight ball of fear and anger lodged just under my heart. i feel it when i try to take a deep breath, it pushes back at me like my children’s feet when they were within. every breath is a fight and struggle with myself. the more i try to get this breath in, the more i curl into myself. that hot angry ball won’t move or shift or shrink.

i am not sure when i noticed this sphere under my ribcage or how long it has been growing. it seems to be pieces of arguments, worry over money, fights among the children, conflict with friends. i try to tease it apart and break it up, accept, forgive, forget and try to catch my breath.

it is sneaky; i think it is gone and when i talk to loved ones, this hateful mass will spew out of my mouth, my words turned black with fear and anger and i swallow it back down in tears. this tangled skein of anger and fear grows with every tear i see fall and careless word i speak.

today, my gift to you god is my breath. i will only sing of the good you have done and not speak unless my words are in love. i will turn this fear of everything into the fear and awe of you god. i will turn this anger that is buried within into strength to do your good deeds. i give you my breath to do your will.

amen

finding peace

dear god,
this week i am struggling with keeping my peace. i am in conflict with a woman involved in the same work i do. we both have the same goals. she has far more experience than i. she is older than i. i feel like everything i do, she perceives as an attack and lashes out at me. i am finding it difficult to distance myself from my emotions. i cannot do anything right.
i like this work, god. i like the people i work with and the people who participate in this work. i feel useful and worthy except for this one relationship with this one person. i know she knows more than i do about the goals and history and management of the work we do. i know that i am imperfect.
my husband has dealt with this person for longer than i have and has struggled in his relationship with her. how much of what i feel is from his relationship with her, and how much of what he feels is from what i feel over her. we complain about this person daily, but does not draw us closer together. we are distanced in this by the ugliness of our feelings.
her role is valuable and necessary as are our roles. we are in this organization for all the other benefits our entire family experiences. this conflict is beginning to spill over into our enjoyment of what we do as a family, and that’s not right or good.

today god, i am giving you my conflict with this woman. i am not making my world better by holding on to it. I am not creating anything new or beautiful with it. i am giving you my fear that i am not doing the right thing. i am giving to you the power i feel that she has had over me. i am giving you the anger i have felt when attacked by her words. i will praise you and find peace before and after i interact with her. i will speak only good of her and preserve her good name. i will honour your presence in her.

amen

not arguing

dear god,

a few days ago we were at the table and my husband was reminding my son of the expectations he has of table manners-no fidgeting, no putting food in his mouth when he still had food in it, keeping elbows below his shoulders, eating slowly, not talking with food in his mouth, not pointing but actually describing what items he wants passed to him and saying thank you when items are handed to him. these table manners are not new, but that boy has been unable to sit still and eat slowly since the first time he sat in a high chair 11 years ago.

dinner progressed and the reminders became more frequent and louder. they escalated to my boy being told to leave the table without being able to finish his meal; my husband was unable to cope with what he perceived as active disobedience.

i was really mad. i was so tired of the constant, useless escalations at the table that i was losing my temper too and i told my husband to stop. he got mad at me and then he left the table too. that was not what i wanted to have happen.

i cleared the table and went to do some other chores, frustrated and getting madder and i did not know how to talk to my husband about how we had to change what was going on. i did some more chores, then i thought about what was really needed. i stopped where i was, dropped to my knees and asked you for help. in those quiet moments of prayer, you gave me an incredible gift. you gifted me with peace to know what words i could use to talk this over with my husband so we would grow together and this conflict would not drive us apart.

i called my husband to me, put my arms around his neck and told him i loved him. i told my husband how much these spats at the table were hurting me and our children. i reminded him of my son’s need to fidget at all times. i told him how i was revisiting unpleasant parts of my childhood every night this happened. together, we worked out a strategy of loving discipline for encouraging table manners instead of punishment. i fell a bit more in love with my husband.

today, my gift to you is to give you back that peace i found in that prayer instead of the anger i had felt moments before . i will keep the memory of it in my heart. i am so blessed to be able to talk to my husband in love and respect instead of fear and anger.

thank you god for giving me that peace to work this out. i was ready to dissolve family dinners so that this kind of conflict would stop happening. now my husband and i are stronger and striving together to create a loving supportive table.

amen