A prayer for Flood Victims in Colorado and New Mexico

I don’t usually post on Sunday but wanted to share this prayer just posted by my friends at In His Footsteps. 

Prayers for the journey

I have already posted many of this weeks Light for the Journey prayers as blog posts, but I know some of you like to share these with friends and having them in one post helps. I have reposted the prayer from yesterday because of its popularity
Enjoy!
Lord I breathe in life.004

God may I enter this day with joy.
May I search for your ways,
And follow your paths.
May I look for your presence,
And uncover your dreams.
May I commit all I am and all I do
Into your care.
Amen

Christine Sine https://godspace.wordpress.com/

There are confusing voices
distracting us from your Word,
persuasive voices
demanding to be heard,
drowning out the still small voice
we have listened to before,
bringing a new philosophy
that has no place for you.
Forgive us
when we doubt your Word,
forgive us
when we are led astray.
Grant us a faith that is strong,
and wisdom to distinguish
between Truth
…..and that which is not.

(http://www.facebook.com/faithandworship?ref=hl)

This is the day that God has made,
May we work hard
and share God’s gifts
with friends and neighbours
with colleagues and foes.
This is the day that God has made,
may we work hard
and we share with Jesus
in the poor and the oppressed
in the rejected and abandoned.
This is the day that God has made,
May we work hard
and share with gratitude
God’s gifts generously given
Full measure overflowing like manna,
Not for us alone but for the renewal of all creation.

Christine Sine http://godspace.wordpress/,com

God I breathe in your life,
And find your strength
Made perfect in weakness.
Christ I breathe in your love,
And inhale your fragrance
Interwoven through all creation.
Spirit I breathe in your peace,
And am engulfed by your presence
Surrounding me on every side.
God who is One,
God who is three,
I breathe in you.

Christine Sine https://godspace.wordpress.com/

When faith is tested to the limit
and we stumble,
forgive us.
When feet stray from the path
and we wander,
forgive us.
When our neighbour is in need
and we walk by,
forgive us.
When the voices of this world
drown out your whisper,
forgive us.
When love draws us to your feet
in repentance,
forgive us.

http:faithandworship.com

Lord Jesus Christ
let us breathe in your love
In all its wonder and beauty.
Lord Jesus Christ
Let us drink in your mercy
In all its grace and patience.
Lord Jesus Christ
Let us stand in your presence
In all its glory and majesty.
Lord or earth and heaven,
Let all that we are and all that we do
Draw us closer towards you.

Christine Sine https://godspace.wordpress.com/

May we dream of a world made new,
Where together we shout for justice,
And as one we fight against oppression.
May we dream of a world made new,
Where together we seek God’s righteousness
And as one we sing God’s praise.
May we dream of a world made new,
Where together we climb God’s mountain,
And as one we enter the promised land.
May we dream of a world made new,
Where together we proclaim the good news of God’s kingdom,
And as one we enjoy its peace, and abundance and love.

Prayers for Teachers and Their Students

Here in the Northern Hemisphere teachers and their students are preparing to go back to school. It is a stressful and busy season for many. I have reflected on this a lot since reading this beautiful back to school liturgy. I think that all teachers, and students need prayers they can say throughout the day to bring their centre back to God who sustains them.

The following prayers were written with this in mind.

Lord I breathe in life.004

 

This is the day that the Lord has made,
May we work hard
and share God’s gifts
with friends and neighbours
with colleagues and foes.
This is the day that the Lord has made,
may we work hard
and share with Jesus
in the poor and the oppressed
in the rejected and abandoned.
This is the day that the Lord has made,
May we work hard
and share with gratitude
God’s gifts generously given
Full measure overflowing like manna,
Not for us alone but for the renewal of all creation.

 

A New Breath Prayer

This morning’s post is a prayer that I adapted from one posted on Facebook last week. I am fascinated by the power of breathing prayers, especially combined with scenes of tranquility, to quiet my soul and draw me closer to God.

Breathe in peace.001

Breathe In All That Is Of God

Many of you know that I love breath prayers and I thought you might enjoy this one which I wrote last week

Breathe in all that is of God.001

A Prayer for My Children by Kimberlee Conway Ireton

Today’s post is by Kimberlee Conway Ireton, mother of four and author of The Circle of Seasons: Meeting God in the Church Year. This is part of an ongoing series that Kimberlee is contributing on her year of prayer. 

After church on Sunday, I talked to another mother, her children long since flown, and I learned that one of her sons, raised in the faith like his brother, has turned away from Christ. My heart ached, for I can imagine her pain. The deepest desire of my heart is that my children come to know, love, and walk in the way of Christ.

Walk-in-the-Way

As I pondered this other mother’s words and her pain, I wept. But my tears were as much for myself as for her. I found myself praying with tears that night as I got ready for bed, “Grant me the souls of these children!”

Later, I remembered an Orthodox prayer that I’d read awhile back. “Akathist to the Mother of God, Nurturer of Children,” it’s called. It’s a beautiful prayer, a plea for the souls of our children, an entreaty that they know and follow Christ. It voices my yearning that my children will live a life of faith in Christ lived by the saving power of Christ.

I copied the akathist, so I could have it for my own. Then, being Protestant and all, I changed some of the words. I don’t mind asking Mary to intercede with her Son on behalf of my children, but I do mind asking her to make them devoted to her alone. It’s not devotion to Mary that I desire for my kids but devotion to God. So I fiddled with the words of the akathist, turning it into a prayer to the Triune God, updating the antiquated language of Thee and Thou, and rewording the opening prayers in each section to reflect a more contemporary idiom.

But I left the heart and soul of the akathist mostly alone. It’s theologically rich and linguistically beautiful. Over my next few posts here on Godspace, I’ll be sharing it with you (it’s long!), in the hope that you will find it as rich and meaningful as I do and, especially, that you will use it to help you pray more frequently and more fervently for the children in your life. Here then are the first few songs of the akathist.

A Prayer for My Children

Holy and victorious God, Perfect Leader and Good Nurturer of the Christian race, we your servants, delivered from evil by the saving power of Your Son, sing out our grateful thanks to You.

You have invincible might: deliver my children from all dangers, I pray. With tears I cry to You: Raise my children (names), to be made worthy of the Kingdom of Heaven, and make them heirs of eternal blessings.

***

Song 1
Holy Jesus, I pray You to send an angel from heaven to my children. I cry to You:
Raise my children to be earthly angels.
Raise my children to be heavenly people.
Raise my children to be Your servants.
Raise my children to cry out to You.
Raise my children (names), O Christ, to be made worthy of the Kingdom of Heaven and make them heirs of eternal blessings.

***

Prelude 2
Loving and powerful God, You see my maternal (paternal) entreaty for my children, begging help of You alone: take my children under the shadow of your wing. I cry to You: Alleluia.

Song 2
Holy Spirit, send my children understanding, that they may know how to serve You well; fill their hearts with heavenly wisdom and grant that they may love it alone and scorn the things of the world. Do not hinder my lips from crying such things as these:
Raise my children to be as wise as serpents and as innocent as doves.
Raise my children to have knowledge of good but not of sin.
Raise my children to be wise against the snares of the devil.
Raise my children to order their lives wisely, following the examples of the saints.
Raise my children, nourishing them with the milk of the hidden wisdom of God, that they may seek it all of their lives.
Raise my children (names), O Christ, to be made worthy of the Kingdom of Heaven and make them heirs of eternal blessings.

***

Prelude 3
May Your power, O Most High, overshadow my children. May they know Your compassion towards all who run to You with faith, and may they cry to You: Alleluia.

Song 3
Having received my children from You, O Lord, I do not desire to behold them dwelling in eternal torment, but rather to see them written in the Book of Life and made inheritors of eternal life. Incline Your ear to my supplication, O God, as I cry to You:
Raise my children to flee eternal torment.
Raise my children to inherit eternal life.
Raise my children to pass the course of their life in repentance.
Raise my children to labor to acquire the grace of the Holy Spirit.
Raise my children to exert effort to attain the Kingdom of Heaven.
Raise my children to be written in the Book of Life.
Raise my children (names), O Christ, to be made worthy of the Kingdom of Heaven and make them heirs of eternal blessings.

***

Prelude 4
Having within a tempest of doubting thoughts and wanting my children to drink of eternal life, I weep. Remembering Your rich mercies, O God, I sing to Your Son with hope and with a contrite heart: Alleluia.

Song 4
I stretch out my hands and my heart towards Your loving-kindness, entreating that You will keep my children among Your servants and fulfill my petitions:
Raise my children in Your most holy inheritance.
Raise my children with all Your saints.
Raise my children to be Your servants, fulfilling all Your commands.
Raise my children to seek help from You alone.
Raise my children to inherit eternal life.
Raise my children (names), O Christ, to be made worthy of the Kingdom of Heaven and make them heirs of eternal blessings.

A Prayer for Pentecost 2013

I have adapted the following prayer from one I wrote a few years ago for Pentecost. Enjoy.

God, your Spirit fell like tongues of fire,

The seal of your ownership is on us,

You have breathed your Holy Spirit into our hearts.

(Pause to invite the Holy Spirit into your day’s activities)

God, your spirit fell like tongues of fire. 

It filled those who were empty,

It empowered those who were weary.

God, your spirit fell like tongues of fire. 

It brought together those who were divided,

It reassured those who were afraid.

God, your spirit fell like tongues of fire. 

By its power we can walk together as one,

By its power we can find strength to share.

God, your spirit fell like tongues of fire.

By its power we can find freedom in loving each other,

By its power we can find life in you. 

 

Read scriptures for Day of Pentecost from daily lectionary 

 

Eternal Spirit

Earth-Maker, Pain-bearer, Life-giver,

source of all that is and that shall be,

Father and Mother of us all.

Loving God, in whom is heaven.

The hallowing of your name echoes through

the universe!

The way of your justice be followed by the peoples

of the earth!

Your heavenly will be done by all created beings!

Your commonwealth of peace and freedom

sustain our hope and come on earth.

With the bread we need for today, feed us.

In the hurts we absorb from one another, forgive us.

In times of temptation and test, spare us.

From the grip of all that is evil, free us.

For you reign in the glory of the power that is love,

now and forever.

Amen.

(This version of the Lord’s prayer from New Zealand Prayer book) 

God, thank you for your spirit breaking down barriers within and without

Barriers that distort our ability to lead a life fully integrated with you and your ways

Forgive us for the times we have deliberately resisted the Spirit’s work

Life giving spirit, God’s advocate and guide, have mercy on us.

Forgive us God for the barriers we create within ourselves,

Barriers that resist your healing work and prevent us moving toward wholeness.

Forgive our self-centerdness, our anger, our fear of change, our lack of trust in your love.

Life giving spirit, God’s advocate and guide, have mercy on us.

Forgive us God, for the barriers we create between us and you,

Barriers that separate us from your love and the assurance of your salvation.

Forgive our busyness, our independence, our desire to go our own way.

Life giving spirit, God’s advocate and guide, have mercy on us.

Forgive us God, for the barriers we create between us and each other,

Barriers that separate us from neighbours near and far and inhibit mutual love and care.

Forgive our resentment of others, our love of control, our indifference to the poor.

Life giving spirit, God’s advocate and guide, have mercy on us.

Forgive us God, for the barriers we create between us and your beautiful creation,

Barriers that abuse your world and deny our responsibility as stewards.

Forgive our greed, our misuse of resources, our pollution of the environment.

Life giving spirit, God’s advocate and guide, have mercy on us.

God, by the power of your spirit, free us and break down these barriers.

Turn us away from the bondage of a life lived for ourselves and our own desires,

May your spirit guide us into the freedom of life lived for you and your purposes.

Life giving spirit, God’s advocate and guide, have mercy on us.

 

Glorious God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,

We go into this day knowing your Spirit dwells within us.

May your Counselor make us wise and help us understand what it means to know you.

May the Spirit’s fire ignite our hearts so that we understand the hope of being chosen by God.

May we discover the glorious blessings we share together with all God’s people.

 

God we go into this day knowing it is you who makes us stand firm in Christ

We are filled with your Spirit,

We are anointed to serve,

We go out to bring resurrection life.

May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all, this day and forever.

Amen

 

What is a Sacred Space?

What is a spiritual practice

What is a sacred space

Over the last few days there has been an interesting discussion on my previous post Creating Sacred Spaces: Do We Really Need Churches? which has raised the question for me, and obviously for many others: What is a sacred space.

The forest one day and the café the next, from a mountaintop sunrise to the neon city lights; they do compliment and complete each other. Sacred is where the soul goes, not just what is there as prior.

Sacred is where the soul goes. I love that expression. A place is not sacred because it is set aside for the worship of God. Nor is it sacred because it is constructed specifically to glorify God. A place is sacred, ground is holy because we encounter God there. Think on Moses’ encounter with God at the burning bush. This bush was not unique, it was probably identical to many other bushes in the area. What made it special was that God was revealed to Moses in that place.

Sacred space is where we intentionally move towards an encounter with God. Moses could have kept on walking and ignored the bush, just as we so often do today when God appears in unexpected but ordinary places. It seems to me that we have confined sacred experiences and holy ground to church buildings that God never really wanted anyway. I love a couple of the suggestions that have been voiced on my previous post:

I do remember as a youngster in Chicago, some of my favorite things to do would be to go to those parts of the city where most would not. Have you ever experienced taking a date to go sit on the curb in a lesser part of town and discuss life with the local denizens? This too was holy ground at those times.

We can even extend that now to include other ethnic groups, other cultures, other nations. Though it may not be a face to face experience; when dialoguing with friends all over the word, finding new experiences through their thoughts and expanding my mind with different ideas,makes my computer one more holy place.

So what are the unexpected sacred places in your life? Where do you encounter a special relationship with God and what are the activities, experiences and conversations that make it sacred?

 

Prayer for the Fourth Sunday of Lent 2013

Prayer for 4th Sunday of Lent.001

Return to Our Senses in Lent – Accept the Challenge and Download Free Study Guide

Return to Our Senses - cover

Return to Our Senses

What are the experiences of everyday life that make you feel close to God or that make you want to respond to our broken world with compassion and love? For most of us it is not pipe organs, pulpits and churches. It is simple things like breathing, drinking a glass of water, running, or taking a photo. Our world is alive with the presence of God, beckoning to us in every moment and through every encounter. We just need help to recognize this.

Lent is a time to reflect on our faith and the practices that sustain it and I want to challenge all of us to consider the experiential practices we can incorporate during the season to increase intimacy with God and concern for God’s world. Is it gardening or painting pictures? Is walking the labyrinth or providing hospitality for those at the margins?  Is it participating in something like the $2 challenge or using public transport rather than driving the car? How does this connect you to God and what are you doing to nurture this practice?

Please consider contributing a post about practices you plan to use during Lent and beyond that transform your everyday activities and encounters into prayer and spiritual practices. Posts should be no more than 800 words long and accompanied by a short bio and photos you wish to include. (Please don’t forget to include credits for photos.)

The emphasis for this series comes from my new book Return to Our Senses: Reimagining How We Pray which was written out of my own hunger for experiential forms of prayer that open my eyes and ears and in fact all my senses to new ways to interact with God in every moment. We have just published a study guide that many of our friends and associates plan to use during Lent. I hope that the blog series will provide additional resources for those who want to integrate their faith and their everyday life.

So get ready to join us for Lent.

  1. Join us for a time of retreat of reflection and refocusing.  Establish new spiritual disciplines for the season: February 16th at the Mustard Seed House.
  2. Join us in the study of Return to Our Senses and challenge your friends to participate too. The study guide can be downloaded free from the MSA website. The book itself is available at a special discount price ($15 for a single copy; $12 for 5 or more) until Easter.  
  3. Share with us the experiential prayer practices you plan to incorporate in your life during this season
  4. Contribute a post to the series Return to Our Senses in Lent.