Prayers for other occasions
Prayer Shawl Prayer
May this shawl be for you a sign of God's loving, healing presence.
May it warm when you are weary.
May it surround you with encouragement when you are discouraged.
May it assure you of God's care and comfort when you and your loved ones are troubled.
May it remind you that you are always safe in the arms of Jesus.
And that you are surrounded by the prayers of others.
A Valentine's Day Poem
When my soul touches yours a great chord sings!
How shall I tune it then to other things?
O! That some spot in darkness could be found
That does not vibrate when’er your depth sound.
But everything that touches you and me
Welds us as played strings sound one melody.
Where is the instrument whence the sounds flow?
And whose the master-hand that holds the bow?
O! Sweet song--
Rainer Maria Rilke - 1875-1926
A Hymn for Aldersgate Day
"And Can It Be" @ Wesley's Chapel - London
(click on the link to hear this hymn)
And can it be that I should gain
An int'rest in the Savior's blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain?
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, should die for me?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, should die for me!
'Tis mystery all! Th'Immortal dies!
Who can explore His strange design?
In vain the firstborn seraph tries
To sound the depths of love divine!
'Tis mercy all! let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more. [Refrain]
He left His Father's throne above,
So free, so infinite His grace;
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam's helpless race;
'Tis mercy all, immense and free;
For, O my God, it found out me. [Refrain]
Long my imprisoned spirit lay
Fast bound in sin and nature's night;
Thine eye diffused a quick'ning ray,
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free;
I rose, went forth and followed Thee. [Refrain]
No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in Him is mine!
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness divine,
Bold I approach th'eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own. [Refrain]
Written in May 1738 a few days after Charles Wesley truly found his relationship with God and gave himself to Christ.
A Poem for Spring
Wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills.
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the Milky Way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a boy:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance
The waves beside them danced, but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay
In such a jocund company;
I gazed--and gazed--but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:
For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils
- William Wordsworth
O God, we thank you for this earth, our home;
For the wide sky and the blessed sun,
For the salt sea and the running water,
For the everlasting hills
And the never-resting winds,
For trees and the common grass underfoot.
We thank you for our senses
By which we hear the songs of birds,
And see the splendor of the summer fields,
And taste of the autumn fruits,
And rejoice in the feel of the snow,
And smell the breath of the spring.
Grant us a heart wide open to all this beauty;
And save our souls from being so blind
That we pass unseeing
When even the common thorn bush
Is aflame with your glory,
O God our creator,
Who lives and reigns forever and ever.
- Walter Rauschenbusch (1861-1918)
Mother's Day Prayer
To the Moms who are struggling, to those filled with incandescent joy.
To the Moms who are remembering children who have died, and pregnancies that miscarried.
To the Moms who decided other parents were the best choice for their babies, to the Moms who adopted those kids and loved them fierce.
To those experiencing frustration or desperation in infertility.
To those who knew they never wanted kids, and the ways they have contributed to our shared world.
To those who mothered colleagues, mentees, neighborhood kids, and anyone who needed it.
To those remembering Moms no longer with us.
To those moving forward from Moms who did not show love, or hurt those they should have cared for.
Today is a day to honor the unyielding love and care for others we call 'Motherhood,' wherever we have found it and in whatever ways we have found to cultivate it within ourselves.
- The Rev. Hannah Kardon, Elston Avenue United Methodist Church (Chicago, Illinois)
Father's Day Prayer
Our Father who art in heaven, bless the fathers who are on earth;
Those who work hard every day to light a path and show the way;
Those who forget and don’t perceive the devastation when they leave.
Hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come; thy Will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Help the earthly fathers know and praise your name in daily flow,
Making no difference between the holy realm and worldly scene.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And for the dads without a job,
Strengthen their faith in Provider God.
Feed them with the bread of love
The wine of justice
The meat of determination
The fruit of the spirit;
That they will remember how Jesus gave himself for us
Demonstrating that there are many ways for a MAN TO GIVE.
And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.
Teach our men the ways of peace
Desiring that all violence shall cease
Whether husband/wife, parents/children
Black on black, nation to nation
Neither tongue, hand, gun, knife
No shock and awe, no fiery towers . . .
Help humanity learn HOW TO FORGIVE.
And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.
Guide all daddies to be wise.
Give them strength of soul to seek the prize
Of a world without racism or greed,
A world where no child is left in need,
A world where cheaters cannot win,
Salvation reigns, there is no sin.
For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, forever, Amen.
Father’s Day Prayer: A 21st Century Africana Worship Resource. ©2009 Rev. Marilyn E. Thornton. . Posted with permission on the Discipleship Ministries Worship website.
Photo: Autumn on the Flatirons
A Prayer for Autumn
O God of Creation, you have blessed us with the changing
of the seasons.
As we welcome the autumn months, may the earlier setting
of the sun remind us to take time to rest.
May the brilliant colors of the leaves remind us of the wonder
of your creation.
May the steam of our breath in the cool air remind us that
it is you who give us the breath of life.
May the harvest from the fields remind us of the abundance
we have been given and bounty we are to share with others.
May the dying of summer's spirit remind us of your great
promise that death is temporary and life is eternal.
We praise you for your goodness forever and ever.
- Author Unknown
A Prayer for Black Friday
Heavenly Father, we first and foremost thank you for the provision to be able to buy gifts during a time when the world’s economy is still in recovery mode. But as we thank you for this provision, we also ask for knowledge, wisdom, and discernment so that we can be good stewards over the financial resources you have given us.
Do not let us exceed our budgets but let us stay within our budgets remembering that beyond the sales, on the other side, are people who could really use the money we would spend on gifts.
Let us remember that our wants represent someone else’s needs.
Do not let the spirit of greed and consumption overtake us on this day. Let us remember that the Christmas season is not about buying things and receiving things as much as it is about spreading love and reminding people of the great love that came to the earth for us.
May that same love extend on this day. May we exercise patience in long lines; kindness in crowds and may traveling mercies be extending to us in traffic. Grant everyone safety throughout the day and beyond. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
God of joy and hope,
We thank you for this time of graduation.
Your spirit of wisdom has empowered our hard work and discipline in such a way that our hunger for learning has been nourished with knowledge, discovery, creativity, and determination.
As we prepare to walk across the stage to receive our diplomas, let us walk in prayerful gratitude for the many blessings that have made this moment real and filled with great potential.
In gratitude, we pray for our families and the many who have sacrificed and worked to see us to this hopeful moment. In gratitude, we pray for the teachers and administrators who have challenged, cared, and crafted us along this academic journey. In gratitude, we pray for fellow students who have taught us more about friendship, collaboration, and sharing.
God, even as we have faced challenges and accomplished much, we understand that our lives move into a new chapter where there will be more challenges to face and more will be demanded of us in order to accomplish good things. May your grace cover our anxieties and fears so that we may stay encouraged about the future.
Give us patience and hope to energize our search for work that is just and makes proper use of our gifts.
Give us courage to face the challenges of carving out a place in society where we might live in peace, service, and gratitude.
Give us strength to resist the temptations of greed, laziness, pride, and envy as we strive to do and be our best.
May your spirit guide us as we unfold the next chapters of our lives. Help us to enliven hope in the world and bring good things to Your Kingdom. And may this celebration be a reflection of the blessings that we find in knowing and loving you. For this is the day that You have made.
We are glad and rejoice in it!
- Author Unknown
Photo: Summer sunset over the Flatirons.
A Summer Blessing
May you walk with God this summer in whatever you do, wherever you go.
Walking with God means...
Walking with honesty and with courage,
Walking with love and respect,
And concern for the feelings of others
May you talk to God this summer and every day and in every situation
Talking with God means...
Praying words of praise for the beauty of creation
Saying prayers of thanks for friends and good times,
Asking God's help in all your decisions
Expressing sorrow when you have failed
May you talk with God Every day.
- Author unknown
M&Ms Back to School Prayer
Blue - Pray specifically for the school closest to your home. Pray for the safety and health of all students at that school. Pray for any students you know of by name. Pray for those who may struggle to find friends or have moved to a new school. Pray for Christian students to share the love of Jesus with other students who do not yet know Jesus.
Brown - Pray for all of the teachers preparing to teach these students. Pray for no disruptions in their classrooms. Pray for all of the parents who are homeschooling their children. Pray for Christian teachers to share the love of Jesus with their students and fellow teachers.
Green - Pray for the parents who are sending their kids to school this year. Pray that they would make time each day to talk to their kids about what went on at school. Pray for Christian parents to model Christ at home to their kids. Pray for any parents of school age children you know by name.
Yellow - Pray for safe travels to and from school this year for all bus drivers, parents, and student drivers. Pray for safety and protection for all schools in your area for this entire school year.
Orange - Pray for all of our Sunday school teachers who are about to have new students in their class this fall. Pray that they would share God’s love effectively with their students. Pray that many children would give their hearts to Jesus this year.
Red - Pray for all of the staff and volunteers that work at school - coaches, janitors, cafeteria workers, counselors, principals, and administrators.
Photo: Boulder on a winter's day.
A Prayer for Winter
Winter in all of Our Lives
There is a winter in all of our lives, a chill and darkness that makes us yearn for days that have gone
or put our hope in days yet to be.
Father God, you created seasons for a purpose.
Spring is full of expectation buds breaking frosts abating and an awakening of creation before the first days of summer.
Now the sun gives warmth and comfort to our lives reviving aching joints bringing colour, new life and crops to fruiting.
Autumn gives nature space to lean back, relax and enjoy the fruits of its labour mellow colours in sky and landscape as the earth prepares to rest.
Then winter, cold and bare as nature takes stock rests, unwinds, sleeps until the time is right.
An endless cycle and yet a perfect model.
We need a winter in our lives a time of rest, a time to stand still a time to reacquaint ourselves with the faith in which we live.
It is only then that we can draw strength from the one in whom we are rooted take time to grow and rise through the darkness into the warm glow of your springtime to blossom and flourish bring colour and vitality into this world your garden.
Thank you, Father, for the seasons of our lives.
- Author Unknown