O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go

(A prayer of George Matheson)

O Love that will not let me go,
I rest my weary soul in Thee;
I give Thee back the life I owe,
That in Thine ocean depths its flow
May richer, fuller be.


Lord, my God, my God, my gracious Friend,
as this long day comes to its end,
and as I sleep, I rest in you.
And in the morning, when I wake,
let me no less rest in you then, too.

Train My Hands for Warfare

Abba, I'm a pastor.
I was ordained as a pastor 27 years ago.
And yet I still haven't grown accustomed
to the Enemy's darts and daggers.
Please, Lord, either steel me against discouragement
or train my hands to fight.
Should I expect that every Sunday someone's going to tell me
that I disappointed them,
that I let them down,
that someone else is upset with me because I didn't do enough?
Should I anticipate, when I walk away from a celebration
thinking, "Wow, that was wonderful, Lord, thank you!"
that someone is gonna contact me
and say, "That was terrible, what're you gonna do about it?"
I know that sheep will bleat,
but will I never have a break from criticism
and fault-finding
and nit-picking
except when I am on vacation
or worshiping with someone else's flock?


Today I put on
a terrible strength
invoking the Trinity
confessing the Three
with faith in the One
as I face my Maker.

Today I put on the power
of Christ's birth and baptism,
of his hanging and burial,
His resurrection, ascension,
and descent at the Judgement.

Today I put on the power
of the order of the Cherubim,
angels' obedience,
archangels' attendance,
in hope of ascending
to my reward;
patriarchs' prayers,
prophets' predictions,
apostles precepts,
confessors' testimony,
holy virgins' innocence
and the deeds of true men.

Today I put on
the power of Heaven,
the light of the Sun,
the radiance of the Moon,
the splendour of fire,
the fierceness of lightning,
the swiftness of wind,
the depth of the sea,
the firmness of earth
and the hardness of rock.

Today I put on
God's strenghth to steer me,
God's power to uphold me,
God's wisdom to guide me,
God's eye for my vision,
God's ear for my hearing,
God's word for my speech,
God's hand to protect me,
God's pathway before me,
God's shield for my shelter,
God's angels to guard me
from ambush of devils,
from vice's allurements,
from traps of the flesh,
from all who wish ill,
whether distant or close,
alone or in hosts.

I summon these powers today
to take my part against every implacable power
that attacks my body and soul,
the chants of false prophets,
dark laws of the pagans,
false heretics' laws,
entrapments of idols,
enchantments of women
or smiths or druids,
and all knowledge that poisons
man's body or soul.

Christ guard me today
from poison, from burning,
from drowning, from hurt,
that I have my reward.

Christ beside me,
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,

Christ within me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me.

Christ on my right hand,
Christ on my left,

Christ where I lie,
Christ where I sit,
Christ where I rise.

Christ in the hearts of all who think of me,
Christ in the mouths of all who speak to me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.

Today I put on
a terrible strength,
invoking the Trinity,
confessing the Three,
with faith in the One
as I face my Maker.

Hostage Prayer

Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.

Have mercy, O Lord, on the family and friends
of the South Korean hostage
who was killed by the Taliban just recently.

Give wisdom, Lord, to those confronted with the choice
of inviting more kidnapping by paying ransom money to evil people
or inviting more killing by not paying ransom.

Give comfort, Lord, to those who mourn.
Mete justice to those who do such evil things.
Save the innocent.
Punish the guilty.

Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.

Jesus Prayer

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of David,
have mercy on me, a sinner.

Weary Prayer

Abba, Father, I am overcome with weariness and fatigue
both of body and of spirit.

My energy is gone.
My creativity has drained.
My passion is depleted.

Help me, Lord.
Send ravens to feed me
or angels to minister to me.

Help me find a retreat center
or some kind of option
for a writing retreat in August.

Keep me as the apple of your eye
and hide me in the shadow of your wing.

Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and grant me once again a willing spirit,
to sustain me,
in Jesus' name, amen.


Lord God,
let there be rivers of blessing,
gullywashers of holiness,
flash floods of your kindness and beauty
flowing through my life.

Let the wells spring up!
Wash me clean,
and free me from all unbelief,
from anything that would hinder you
from bringing your kingdom to my family,
my church,
my community.

Let the river flow,
in Jesus' name, amen.

Search Me, O God

(A prayer of J. Edwin Orr)

Search me, O God,
And know my heart today;
Try me, O Savior,
Know my thoughts, I pray.
See if there be
Some wicked way in me;
Cleanse me from every sin
And set me free.

I praise Thee, Lord,
For cleansing me from sin;
Fulfill Thy Word,
And make me pure within.
Fill me with fire
Where once I burned with shame;
Grant my desire
To magnify Thy Name.

Lord, take my life,
And make it wholly Thine;
Fill my poor heart
With Thy great love divine.
Take all my will,
My passion, self and pride;
I now surrender, Lord
In me abide.

O Holy Ghost,
Revival comes from Thee;
Send a revival,
Start the work in me.
Thy Word declares
Thou wilt supply our need;
For blessings now,
O Lord, I humbly plead.

Yahweh Yireh

Yahweh yireh, you provided
a ram for Abraham.
Please provide for Aaron
a job or jobs that will
meet his and Nina's needs
and fulfill your good, perfect, and pleasing
plans for them, in Jesus' name, amen.

Pascal's Prayer

Lord, help me to do great things
as though they were little,
since I do them with your power,
and little things as though they were great,
since I do them in your name.

(a prayer of Blaise Pascal)

Holiday Prayer

we who are rich and privileged,
thank you for the gift of leisure,
for time to unwind, reflect and plan,
to exercise or simply sit in quiet.
We thank you for the people who create our holiday
by working in the cockpit and control room,
in garage, signal box and harbor office;
for those in kitchens, dining rooms and bars,
those guiding tours and running sports and games;
may they too find time for rest and recreation...
May we be truly re-created in our recreation,
our lives enlarged with new enthusiasm
and a broader vision of your purpose.

(by Stephen Orchard, from The Doubleday Prayer Collection, p. 134)

Variation on a Prayer by William Booth

Thou Christ of burning, cleansing flame,
Send the fire.
Send the fire.
Send the fire.
My right as child of God I claim,
Send the fire.
Send the fire.
Send the fire
To burn up every trace of sin,
To bring your light and glory in,
Another Pentecost begin,
Send the fire.
Send the fire.
Send the fire.

Skin Off Your Nose?

Abba, forgive my impudence,
but would it be so much skin off your nose
to give my son a clearer answer to his prayers?

My Psalm 50

Lord, Mighty One, Adonai,
you have spoken,
and have published your Word to all humanity
from where the sun rises to the place where it sets.
From Mount Zion, the apex of beauty,
you shine forth in glory and light.
You come,
and you speak.
Your unfiltered presence is a consuming fire,
and your wrath like the fury of a storm.
Your voice penetrates the heavens above and the earth below,
and you pronounce justice, summoning your people,
judging those (like me) who claim to worship you.
So, Lord, let the heavens proclaim your justice,
for you are always righteous in your judgments.

Let your people listen to your voice.
Let us all be convicted by your Spirit,
for you are God, you are OUR God!
Are you pleased with our sacrifices?
Do the offerings we give please you?
You do not need our singing
or our money,
for all the animals of the forest are yours,
and you can prompt praise from the mooing of cows
and the singing of every bird on the mountains;
your resources are limitless.
Are you made richer by our gifts? No.
Do you need what we offer? Of course not.
But you do enjoy hearing my thanks,
and my obedience makes you smile.
So I will call on you when I am in trouble,
and you will deliver me,
and I will give you glory.

About the wicked, Lord,
regarding those who recite your decrees
and pretend to obey your covenant,
and yet refuse your discipline
and treat your words like trash,
and admire and imitate dishonesty
and envy adulterers,
whose mouths overflow with wickedness,
and whose tongues are full of lies,
who badger and slander their brothers,
I ask you to rouse yourself,
and show that you care.
Rebuke them transparently and unequivocally,
so that they may repent,
and so avoid further and worse punishment.
But whatever others may do,
I will just focus on giving thanks to you,
and keeping to your path.
I will put one foot in front of the other,
and pray that my life and ministry will reveal the salvation of God.

Great Day

Thank you, Lord, for a great day.
This morning's celebration in the park
was a blessing:
blessed by fine weather,
smooth setup,
rich fellowship,
great coordination,
and excellent execution.
You were kind to us today,
and I hope you were blessed
by our worship and testimony,
in Jesus' name, amen.