Brighter and Brighter

A Memorial Day Prayer

In the quiet sanctuaries of our own hearts,
let each of us name and call on
the One whose power over us
is great and gentle,
firm and forgiving,
holy and healing…

You who created us,
who sustain us,
who call us to live in peace,
hear our prayer this day.

Hear our prayer for all who have died,
whose hearts and hopes are known to you alone…

Hear our prayer for those who put the welfare of others
ahead of their own
and give us hearts as generous as theirs…

Hear our prayer for those who gave their lives
in the service of others,
and accept the gift of their sacrifice…

Help us to shape and make a world
where we will lay down the arms of war
and turn our swords into ploughshares
for a harvest of justice and peace…

Comfort those who grieve the loss of their loved ones
and let your healing be the hope in our hearts...

Hear our prayer this day
and in your mercy answer us
in the name of all that is holy.


(from the Concord Pastor blog)

A Writer's Question

Post Cartwheel Prayer

Lord God Almighty,
thank you for the loving care and medical attention
my precious granddaughter received today
from her parents and doctors and others.

Thank you that she's bandaged and splinted and smiling,
despite a broken bone.
Please ease her pain
and help her to manage the inconvenience
as well as possible (and with you, all things are possible).

Please heal her quickly and fully,
make that arm stronger than ever,
and teach her not to do such enthusiastic cartwheels on playgrounds from now on,
in Jesus' name,

About Desires

Dear God,

Sometimes my desires are so strong that they keep me from thinking straight. Like Samson in the Bible, I can become so obsessed with what I want that I forget to ask for your guidance and wisdom. Help me to know whether the objects of my desire are consistent with your will.

(an excerpt from the book, 365 Pocket Prayers, by Ron Beers)

Cry of My Heart

English translation: "As the deer longs for running water, so longs my soul for you, O God" (Psalm 42:1).

Clothing Prayer

(my prayer today for my kids and my grandkids, from the "31 Ways to Pray for Your Kids" app for iPhone and iPad).


I write today, Lord.
I will be using words,
and some of them will be verbs.

Inspire them all, God, but especially the verbs.
Hover over them.
Speak them into existence.
Breathe into them the breath of life.

All my verbs come from you.
You are my “is.”
My “am.”
My “see,” my “know.”
You are my “laugh” and “cry,”
my “wake” and “sleep,”
“shiver” and “sweat,”
“think” and “speak,”
“jump” and “skip” and “dance” and “bounce.”

There is not an action in my day,
a movement of my bones,
a breath in my breast
or a word on my tongue
that does not come from you.

Let it be consciously so in my writing today.
And at the end of my day, with the final word on the page,
pronounce it good, in Jesus’ name, amen.

Showers and Streams

Lord God Adonai,
please send to me and mine
showers of blessing
and streams of refreshing
in Jesus' name, amen.


Lord, I would clasp your hand in mine,
And never murmur or repine,
Content, whatever lot I see,
Since it is your hand leading me.

(from the hymn, He Leadeth Me, by Joseph Henry Gilmore, slightly updated)


forgive us
that we have imagined true humanness,
after the Enlightenment model,
to mean being successful,
having it all together,
knowing all the answers,
never making mistakes,
striding through the world as though we

(a prayer of N. T. Wright, from The Challenge of Jesus, p. 193; photo via


Lord, "I will run in the way of thy commandments, when thou shalt enlarge my heart" (Psalm 119:32, KJV).

Oh, enlarge my heart, please. Increase my capacity for you. Flood every valve and ventricle, every corner and cubbyhole of my heart and spirit with your gracious presence and sovereign control. I need you, I want you, I will not let go unless you bless me with more, more, more of yourself.

Let me be satisfied in you today, as with the richest of foods, in Jesus' name, amen.

(illustration via

Fearless as the Sun

Lord, I pray today
that I would be
"like the sun when it rises
in its strength" (Judges 5:31b).
May I bring light in a dark world;
may I show people the way.
Help me to bring warmth and energy,
and to be strong, bold and fearless as the sun.

(a prayer of @nickygumbel; photo via

Wife, Mother, Mimi

Abba, Father,
I know I don't have to tell you how blessed I am
by the wife you've given to me,
and the kind of mother she has been--
and is--
to our children,
and grandmother to our grandchildren.

To quote Byron,
she walks in beauty, like the night
of cloudless climes and starry skies.

She showers blessing, like August rain,
on every dry and needy place.

She denies herself, like the pelican of legend,
feeding her loved ones with her own lifeblood.

She fights with passion, like a badger,
to defend and protect her home and family.

What a gift she is to me and to this family.
Lift her up in our love,
encourage her with our gratitude,
and let her feel your favor
flowing through ours,
in Jesus' name, amen.

Less and More

Gracious God, 
grant that I may 
eat less, and move more, 
buy less, and save more, 
stress less, and trust more, 
hurry less, and relax more, 
take less, and give more, 
do less, and be more. 

(photo via

Let Me Not

by your great mercy,
by your wonder-working power,
let me not
disappoint you,
frustrate my loved ones,
embarrass the angels,
or vindicate those who expect the worst from me,
in anything I do today,
in Jesus' name,

Pampas Grass

why did you
make pampas grass?

And why
did you
let me plant it?

(photo via


Thank you, God, for the interruption to a hectic day, and the cleansing effect of a laugh. Thank you God that I can hear and see this, in order to so fully enjoy it. Thank you that my lungs work, so I can bark out “HA! That’s funny!” and it heals me more effectively than a thousand sighs. Thank you for the Holy Spirit, who moves on the air I breath, and therefore on all of my tears and laughter and carries them where you will....Thank you for your friendship. Thank you for my life, I do not appreciate enough.

Thank you, God, that a few minutes spent in frivolity only [lead] me back to you, who—being all good—can only be my joy.

(a prayer of The Anchoress, which she posted after a friend sent her a funny video. The photo is of my grandson Miles when he was younger)


(a prayer suggested by a comment my pastor made in church yesterday)