My Hedge

Lord, you know I tend to want to “hedge my bets.” 
But you are my hedge. 
I trust in you.
On my best days, at least. 
Help me to trust in you every day. 

(photo by timajo via pixabay.com)

Into Your Chamber

Draw me completely into yourself,
So that I might completely melt in your love.

Lay upon me, stamp upon me,
So that my stubborn pride might be destroyed.

Embrace me, kiss me,
So that my spiritual ugliness may turn to beauty.

Lock me into your chamber,
So that I might never stray 
from your presence.

(a prayer by Johann Freylinghausen; photo by truk via pixabay.com)

For a Serious Seeking


Keep me O Lord, while I tarry on this earth, 
in a serious seeking after you, 
and in an affectionate walking with you, 
every day of my life; 
that when you come, I may be found 
not hiding my talent, 
nor serving the flesh, 
nor yet asleep with my lamp unfurnished, 
but waiting and longing for you.

 (a prayer by Richard Baxter; photo by Pexels via pixabay.com)

You Speak Words of Promise and We Answer

You speak words of promise, 
and we answer. 
A thousand times we answer, 
in a thousand tongues-- 
we answer in hymns of praise, 
we answer in songs of thanksgiving, 
we answer in lyrics of gladness, 
we answer in candor about hurt, 
we answer in abrasive anger, 
we answer in deep abandonment. 

We answer and draw close to you. 
And in answering we are changed: 
given freedom, 
come to truth, 
bound in obedience. 

We answer and are yours, all yours, 
not our own, 
yours, and 
glad that we belong to 
you our faithful savior. 

(a prayer by Walter Brueggemann, from his book, Prayers for a Privileged People, p. 169)

On Thanksgiving


Our Father in Heaven, 

If ever we had a cause to offer unto Thee our fervent thanks, surely it is now, on the Eve of our Thanksgiving Day, when we, the people of this Nation, are comfortable, well fed, well clad, and blessed with good things beyond our deserving. May gratitude, the rarest of all virtues, be the spirit of our observance. 

Let not feasting, football, and festivity end in forgetfulness of God. May the desperate need of the rest of the world, and our own glorious heritage, remind us of the God who led our Fathers every step of the way by which they advanced to the character of an independent nation.

May the faith and conviction of George Washington be renewed in us as we remember his words:

...there is no truth more thoroughly established than that there exits in the economy and course of nature an indissoluble union between virtue and happiness; between duty and advantage; between the genuine maxims of an honest and magnanimous policy and the solid rewards of public prosperity and felicity; since we ought to be no less persuaded that the propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained...

For if we do not have the grace to thank Thee for all that we have and enjoy, how can we have the effrontery to seek Thy further blessings? God, give us grateful hearts. 

For Jesus' sake.

Amen.

(a prayer from the Senate of the United States, November 26, 1947, by Rev. Dr. Peter Marshall, Chaplain)

On Calleigh's Birthday

Abba, Father, Most Blessed, Most High, 
this girl. 

Isn't she precious? 
Thank you for giving to our family 
the gift of Calleigh,
this precious young woman, 
this beautiful granddaughter, 
this wonderful Calleigh. 

Thank you for preserving her 
through every trial and challenge.
Thank you for her health, 
wholeness, 
charm, 
beauty, 
innocence, 
and intricacy. 

Thank you for entrusting her to the care of such wonderful parents. 

Gentle Shepherd, 
continue as you've begun, 
adding more health, 
more strength, 
more happiness, 
more brilliance, 
more love, 
character, 
and delight
to her life and to our life through hers, 
in Jesus' name, amen.