Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

a prayer for the new year

Dear Father,

I thank you that in this season of life, there are endings and new beginnings.

And that you remind us that there is a time for every purpose under heaven.

So, I thank You for the things that have ended in my life. 
I bless you for new beginnings and new spiritual adventures.

In whatever comes in this new year, I pray for the strength to endure.

Help me to press on and apprehend the mission you have called me to.

In this, I pray to bring glory to you - today and tomorrow.

In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.

— from the third chapter of Ecclesiastes

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being real in prayer

Dear Lord,

Our prayers can be so formal and ritualistic.
Help us to drop our guard and invite you into our lives.

Sometimes life can send us into a shell.
Bless us that we might open our hearts to you.

We are sometimes fearful of sharing our dark thoughts with you.
Give us confidence to boldly come to you in prayer.

In everything and at all times, help us to be people who yield in prayer



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embracing the future

Dear God,

With 2023 less than a week away,
Help us to let go of the past and embrace the future.

Give us grace that we might be optimistic about tomorrow.
Bless us that we might remember your faithfulness.

Teach us to plan with an open mind and open heart.
Let us be flexible as we journey forward.

In all things, and at all times, remind us that you are Lord.
And cause us to honor you in our plans and our lives. 



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hope for our souls

Dear Jesus,

Your day is a means and a pledge of peace.

    At your birth heaven and earth were reconciled,
    Since you came from heaven to earth on that day
    You forgave our sins and wiped away our guilt.

You gave us so many gifts on the day of your birth:

    A treasure chest of spiritual medicines for the sick;
    Spiritual light for the blind;
    The cup of salvation for the thirsty;
    The bread of life for the hungry.

In the winter when trees are bare,

    You give us the most succulent spiritual fruit.
    In the frost when the earth is barren,
    You bring new hope to our souls.

— adapted from a prayer by St. Ephraim the Syrian  

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let kindness come with every gift

Loving Father,

Help us remember the birth of Jesus, that we may share in the song of the angels, the gladness of the shepherds, and worship of the wise men. Close the door of hate and open the door of love all over the world. Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting.

Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings, and teach us to be merry with clear hearts. May the Christmas morning make us happy to be thy children, and Christmas evening bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts, forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus' sake.

— Robert Louis Stevenson  

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in this joyous season

Lord, in this joyous season of prayer and song and laughter, we praise you for the great wonders you have sent us: for the shining star and angel's song, for the infant's cry in lowly manger. We praise you for the Word made flesh in a little Child. We behold his glory, and are bathed in its radiance.

Be with us as we sing the ironies of Christmas, the incomprehensible comprehended, the poetry made hard fact, the helpless Babe who cracks the world asunder. We kneel before you along with shepherds, innkeepers, wise men. Help us to rise bigger than we are. Amen.
- Author Unknown  

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let your light shine through us

Almighty God, Who has poured upon us the new light of your Incarnate Word; grant that the same light enkindled in our hearts may shine forth in our lives through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
–Book of Common Prayer  

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a prayer for preparation


The words of Isaiah come to mind this morning as we continue to prepare for celebrating Christmas:

A voice of one calling:“In the wilderness prepare the way for the Lord;make straight in the desert a highway for our God. (Isaiah 40:3) 

May our hearts be prepared for all the ways you are working in them this week, Lord. May we be open to all that you are doing as we rush from place to place. Help us notice You. Help us stop to listen so that our preparation is focused on the truth of the gospel and the beauty of our Lord Jesus.


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blessing the light within

Father of Lights,

Lead us, that we might shine in this dark world.

Help us, that we might live in the light of your words.

Bless us, to hear and heed your words within.

Teach us, to be people of the Light.

May we always shine for you.

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for a strong heart

Strengthen my heart Lord.

When I am tempted to lean on my own understanding,
Help me to discern what my inner self is speaking.

In times when nothing makes sense to my mind,
Direct me to lean into what I am sensing in my heart.

Teach me Lord to do the things that make my heart strong,
Bring people into my life who love and care about me.

I surrender afresh to you dear father and remember that I am your child,
Cause me to live in such a way that people see your heart in my life.

In Jesus name. Amen.
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help us to nurture empathy and kindness

Dear Lord,

We can be so judgmental.
Teach us to empathize when we are tempted to judge.

So often we see ourselves in a superior fashion.
Help us to be kind and helpful towards those who struggle.

When comparison and envy seem to take hold of us.
Bless us to be generous and giving towards others.

In everything, and at all times, empower us to love the way you love.
We pray in the name of the Compassionate One.

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let us be bound together with love

O God, we are one with you. You have made us one with you. You have taught us that if we are open to one another, you dwell in us. Help us to preserve this openness and to fight for it with all our hearts. Help us to realize that there can be no understanding where there is mutual rejection.

O God, in accepting one another wholeheartedly, fully, completely, we accept you, and we thank you, and we adore you, and we love you with our whole being, because our being is your being, our spirit is rooted in your spirit.

Fill us then with love, and let us be bound together with love as we go our diverse ways, united in this one spirit which makes you present in the world, and which makes you witness to the ultimate reality that is love. Love has overcome. Love is victorious. Amen.
- Thomas Merton  

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a prayer of anticipation

God of Eternity Past, Present and Future,

In this busy time of shopping for presents,
Develop in us a spiritual quiet and stillness.

When we are tempted to be frustrated and upset,
Speak to our minds and quiet us on the inside.

As Christmas approaches and expectations rise,
Put in us a yearning for true life and real joy.

At the dawn of each new day of Advent,
Open our hearts that we might be born anew.

When things seem dark and scary,
Help us to be lights that point to the Prince of Peace.

In you we trust and in you we praise.

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He hears

We must remember that when we cry out to God, He hears!! When we PRAY, He listens. And He cares. And He responds.

That TRUTH should fill us up with a deep PEACE and give us thankful hearts…grateful that we have a mighty God who truly cares about His creation.

Get still before the LORD today and pour out all that is within you…. 

He is a God who hears.

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as we prepare

Lord Jesus,

Master of both the light and the darkness,

Send your Holy Spirit upon our preparations for Christmas.

We who have so much to do and seek quiet spaces to hear your voice each day,

We who are anxious over many things look forward to your coming among us.

We who are blessed in so many ways long for the joy of your kingdom.

We whose hearts are heavy seek the joy of your presence.

We are your people, walking in darkness, yet seeking the light.

To you we say, "Come Lord Jesus!'

- Henri J.M. Nouwen

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a prayer of acceptance

Oh Lord,

Sometimes we are our worst enemy.
Often we have so much trouble knowing that you accept us.

Sometimes past struggles lure us into the blame game.
Often we cannot get past our guilt and shame.

Sometimes it is so hard to forgive ourselves and move on.
Often we punish ourselves for things out of our control.

Open our hearts that we might experience your love.
Teach us to be steadfast in your loving acceptance and compassion.

Open our mouths that we might speak words of acceptance to others.
Teach us to be ambassadors of your unconditional love.

In the name of Jesus Christ we give you honor and glory.

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help us to spread your love

Dear God,

Help us to spread your love.

Open our eyes to children who are in need.

Open our arms to people who have fallen and need help to rise.

Open our hearts to the unlovely and unlovable.

Give us the courage, and the power, to minister in your name.

Bless us, that we might bless the world with your love.


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on limits - a breath prayer


I'm getting caught up in the busy nature of the season already, and we are still 3 weeks away. I am overwhelmed, feeling inadequate, sad, and rushed. Help me breathe. Remind me of my limits. 

*inhale*  - then say, "God, you know my limits"
*exhale*  - then say, "And I believe You still can use me"

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when we are weary

I am so weary Father.

Please put your peace in my heart.

I'm worried and anxious.

My mind races and obsesses.

I can't help thinking about my problems.

And the more I think about them, the more depressed I become.

Calm me, Lord.

Slow me down, put your peace in my heart.

No matter what problem I have, I believe that you are bigger.

You are more powerful than my problems.

So I bring my problems to you.

I trust You. I trust Your goodness and Your wisdom.

So I place myself in Your hands.

Please fill my heart with peace.


- from an anonymous prayer 

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help me to discern

Today, O God of all days,

Give me an experience of your heart.

Draw me deep into your very being,
into the core of your love for me, others, and the world.

Give me a glimpse of others the way you see others:
loving them, forgiving them,
and delighting in the way they give glory to God
through their very existence.

Help me to discern out of that open place of deep affection
so that I too might be a useful vessel of your love in the world.

- Author Unknown  

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a prayer of renewal

Lord, open our eyes
that we may see you in our brothers and sisters.

Lord, open our ears
that we may hear the cries of the hungry,
the cold, the frightened, the oppressed.

Lord, open our hearts
that we may love each other as you love us.

Renew in us your spirit.

Lord, free us and make us one.

-Mother Teresa of Calcutta  

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a prayer of release

Dear Lord,

It is hard to let go of our past and the things that we have done.

Mistakes often haunt us in the form of self doubts and condemnation.

Give us the grace to see those mistakes as gifts and not curses.

Remind us that you were, and are, present in our lives.

Help us to let go of control and trust you in all things.

Teach us to release our pain and trust you with our present and future.

In all things we pray that our lives might reflect your grace and mercy.


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a prayer for generosity

Dear Lord,

Teach me to be generous;

teach me to serve you as you deserve,

to give and not to count the cost,

to fight and not to heed the wounds,

to toil and not to seek for rest,

to labor and not to ask for reward,

save that of knowing that I do your will.


- a prayer of St Ignatius  

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