Morning by morning new mercies I see…
Thomas Chisholm, 1923
Preparation for worship
Sit in a relaxed position. Take a slow, deep breath (or 2 or 3 or as many as needed) until you feel your body, mind, and soul begin to relax and rest in the Spirit. Take time to reflect as you move through this time of worship…
Opening Sentences— Ephesians 1:3-4
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, just as he chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless before him in love.
Prayer John Climacus (c. 600)
God of all good, you are life and salvation to all – faithful and unfaithful, just and unjust, pious and impious, passionate and dispassionate, holy and worldly, wise and simple, healthy and sick, young and old.
Make us faithful and wise in your worship and service, day by day and step by step adding fire to fire, fervor to fervor, zeal to zeal, and love to love; in the name of Christ our Lord. Amen.
Hymn of the Day – Take, O Take Me As I Am (Glory to God #698)
This hymn is a song from the Taize community in France and is intended to be sung repetitively and in a chant-like mode until it becomes a prayer of your spirit. To experience this effect, click on the link above, and sing or pray along.
Psalm of the Day: Psalm 27
27 The Lord is my light and my salvation.
Should I fear anyone?
The Lord is a fortress protecting my life.
Should I be frightened of anything?
2 When evildoers come at me trying to eat me up--
it’s they, my foes and my enemies,
who stumble and fall!
3 If an army camps against me,
my heart won’t be afraid.
If war comes up against me,
I will continue to trust in this:
4 I have asked one thing from the Lord--
it’s all I seek:
to live in the Lord’s house all the days of my life,
seeing the Lord’s beauty
and constantly adoring his temple.
5 Because he will shelter me in his own dwelling
during troubling times;
he will hide me in a secret place in his own tent;
he will set me up high, safe on a rock.
6 Now my head is higher than the enemies surrounding me,
and I will offer sacrifices in God’s tent--
sacrifices with shouts of joy!
I will sing and praise the Lord.
7 Lord, listen to my voice when I cry out--
have mercy on me and answer me!
8 Come, my heart says, seek God’s face.
Lord, I do seek your face!
9 Please don’t hide it from me!
Don’t push your servant aside angrily--
you have been my help!
God who saves me,
don’t neglect me!
Don’t leave me all alone!
10 Even if my father and mother left me all alone,
the Lord would take me in.
11 Lord, teach me your way;
because of my opponents, lead me on a good path.
12 Don’t give me over to the desires of my enemies,
because false witnesses and violent accusers
have taken their stand against me.
13 But I have sure faith
that I will experience the Lord’s goodness
in the land of the living!
14 Hope in the Lord!
Be strong! Let your heart take courage!
Hope in the Lord!
Prayers for self and others
Use this time to lift your joys, concerns, and hopes to God.
May the steadfast love of God, the abundant grace of Jesus Christ, and the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit be with us this day and always. Amen.
Becky Downs, pastor of John Knox, started writing daily prayers for the congregation at the beginning of the COVID pandemic, to encourage the congregation in their faith during their time of separation from each other. The daily prayers were posted throughout the year. You might want to choose one a day to read, and modify the specific prayers for self and others to fit your life today.