For My Children and Grandchildren

Today's prayer from the "31 Ways to Pray for Your Kids" app for iPhone and iPad...and my prayer today for my kids and my grandkids.

A Short Paean

Praise to you, Most Holy, Most High; praise and glory to your name.

I praise you for bestowing life on your Creation; for granting reason to humankind, for making us a little lower than you, higher than the animals, for bestowing on us your likeness.

Thank you and praise to you for creating us as volitional creatures, though by that volition we fell.

Thank you for creating us as sensate beings, though in our sinfulness we serve our senses and sensation more than you.

I praise you for making us rational creatures, though our thoughts and imaginings are clouded by sin.

I praise you that you made us feeling, emotional beings, though we do not love you as we ought.

In all your works you are good and great, most excellent and most worthy of praise, which I offer you imperfectly, incompletely, but sincerely, in Jesus' name, amen.

(photo via

Saturday Psalm 9

I praise you, Lord, wholeheartedly;
I revel in your marvelous works.
I rejoice in you;
I lift my voice in song to you, Most High.

You turn the tide when I need it most; you set me up for victory.
You're always looking out for me; you always do right by me.
You make the wicked look stupid, and shame the proud;
You string them along and they are caught in their own traps.

Meanwhile, you can be depended on; your throne is exalted and your judgments are right.
You do all things well.
You are a refuge for the oppressed, a serene port in a storm.
You are utterly trustworthy and always faithful.

I sing to you, my King. I will boast about you,
my Defender, my Rememberer, my Uplifter.

Have mercy on me, Lord; look on me in my moments of darkness,
be patient with me in my moments of doubt,
and I will dance with you when the morning sun dawns.

In your wisdom, let those who lash out at others be silenced.
In your justice, let those who do evil be defeated.
In your compassion, let the needy not be forgotten, nor the hope of the poor unrewarded.

Win the day, Lord; exalt yourself and your ways over the ways of mere mortals.
Humble the proud, teach the ignorant, and hide the righteous in the shadow of your wing.

(photo by wwarby via

A Prayer of Thomas Aquinas for My Grandchildren

Grant to my grandchildren your grace, most merciful Jesus, that it may be with them and in them now and to the end of their lives. Grant that they may always desire and will those things that are most acceptable and most dear to you. Let your will be theirs, and let their will ever follow yours and agree perfectly with it. Let their willing and not-willing be in complete unison with your will, and let them not be able to will anything but what you will, nor will not what you will not, in Jesus’ name, amen.

(based on a prayer by Thomas Aquinas)

A Prayer of Carole King

At this time in my life let me stop
Let me take control of myself
and be me.

(a prayer of Carole King, from her song, "At This Time in My Life"; photo by djnavv via


I don't know what I was thinking, Lord.
But thank you
for your grace
and kindness
in cleaning up my mess.

First Every Moment

First Speaker,
you whispered your love to me
in my mother's womb.

First Knower,
you knew me
long before I knew you.

First Finder,
you found me
before I looked for you.

First Lover,
you loved me
before I had the first chance to love you back.

And you are still speaking,
and loving me
every day,
every moment;
you are always
and loving
me first.

Thank you,
in Jesus' name, amen.

Saturday Psalm #9

I will praise you, Lord, with my whole heart;
I will mention your marvelous works.

I will be glad and rejoice in you;
I will sing my praises to you, O Most High.

When my enemies retreat,
it is you—not me—
who causes them to fall and fail.
For you have defended my cause;
you judge justly from your throne.

You have rebuked the heathen,
you have destroyed the wicked,
you have erased their legacy for ever.

I have seen, Lord, that you let your enemies stew in their own juices;
you let their own words and deeds destroy them
and erode their reputations.

But you, Lord, endure for ever;
your throne, your place of judgment, is established.
You judge the world in righteousness,
and you rule its people fairly and faithfully.

You are also a refuge for the oppressed, Lord,
a shelter in times of trouble.
Those who know your name will put their trust in you,
for you never fail those who seek you.

I sing your praises, Lord, in my home, church, and community;
I will openly give you the credit you deserve.
I know that you are my defender; you do not ignore my humble cry.
Have mercy on me, Lord;
focus your gaze on those who cause trouble for me,
and lift me out of their clutches and the need I sometimes feel to defend myself,
so that my deliverance will be clearly your doing,
and my salvation will bring glory to you, not me.

Let the wicked, the hypocritical, the scheming, the resentful,
see their sin and turn from it,
or else be snared in the traps they lay for others.
You, Lord are just in all your works;
the wicked are justly brought down by you.

Let them go down, Lord;
let the fate of all those who ignore you befall them.
But remember the needy,
and let not the hopes of the poor be crushed.

Arise, Lord!
Don’t let silly humans defy you.
Straighten them out; straighten us all.
Let your enemies tremble in fear, Lord,
remind them that you are Sovereign…and they are not. Amen.


O Lord, take our mouths and speak through them;
Take our hands and work through them,
Take our minds and think through them,
And take our hearts and set them on fire.

(a prayer by William Sloane Coffin, offered as a benediction at a Yale University commencement)

Their Joy, My Joy

Today's prayer (which I pray for my kids and my grandkids) in the "31 Ways to Pray for Your Kids" app, available for iPads and iPhones.

On Martin Luther King, Jr., Day

Our loving Father, from Thy hand have come all the days of the past. To Thee we look for whatever good the future holds. We are not satisfied with the world as we have found it. It is too little the kingdom of God as yet. Grant us the privilege of a part in its regeneration. We are looking for a new earth in which dwells righteousness. It is our prayer that we may be children of light, the kind of people whose coming and ministry the world is waiting. Amen.

(from the Martin Luther King, Jr., Papers Project, "Prayers" section)

Saturday Psalm #8

O Adonai my Lord, how incredible is your name
in all this sphere, throughout nature;
everywhere I look I see your signature!

You have painted your glory in the star-speckled skies;
your praise even gurgles in the mouths of newborns and children,
while your hands clamp shut lions’ mouths,
and your works leave your enemies speechless.

I don’t spend enough time outdoors these days, God,
but when I do I am struck by the majesty of your heavens,
the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars,
which you have hung in place.

It awes me, confronts me with my littleness.
Yet you made us humans to be like you,
in your image,
and have crowned us with glory and honor.
You made us stewards over the works of your hands
and put all things under our feet:
sheep and cattle, and the beasts of the field;
the birds, the fish, and even crabs and lobsters, for crying out loud.

O Adonai my Lord, how incredible is your name
in all this sphere, throughout nature;
everywhere I look I see your signature!

A Fenced Wall

Let your angels be a fenced wall around us against all our enemies,

(part of a prayer by Martin Luther; photo by Brian Jeffery Beggerly via

Like Beeswax

God, make me strong in your holy love,
and make my soul soft and supple as a glove,
or like a ball of warm beeswax in your hands,
to be molded as you please.

(a prayer of Jane de Chantal, slightly revised, found on the Daily Prayer blog)

How Great a Debtor

Lord God,
to grace how great a debtor
daily I'm constrained to be!

By your grace, I was made;
by your grace, I drew breath.
By your grace, I learned your name.
By your grace, I heard your Word,
and by your grace, received it.
By your grace, I felt your touch,
by your grace, I believed.
By your grace, through faith, was saved.
By your grace, I am forgiven.
By your grace, I have been kept.
By your grace, I have been strengthened.
By your grace, I live,
and move,
and have my being.
By your grace, I pray,
By your grace, I am set in a loving family.
By your grace, I am called into ministry.
By your grace, I am loved.
By your grace, I stand.
By your grace, I walk.
By your grace, I mount up on wings like eagles.

By your grace,

(photo by Crissy Pauley via

For Respect

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

The Speed of Sane

Help me to slow down to the speed of sane, Lord.
I want to live in that place my reading talked about today,
where I can listen to you,
and speak to you with a calm mind,
and spring into action from a position of rest and readiness,
like the harpoonist who is more effective
because he was at rest until the time came to act.

But I am always in action, it seems,
always racing,
never resting.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of David, have mercy on me, a sinner.
Save me from haste.
Lead me to peace.

(photo by nvision88 via

On Epiphany

you revealed your Son to the nations
by the guidance of a star.
Lead us to your glory in heaven
by the light of faith.

We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God for ever and ever. Amen.

(from The Liturgy of the Hours)

Sun Behind All Suns

Almighty God...
Sun behind all suns...
Soul behind all souls...
show to us in everything we touch
and in everyone we meet
the continued assurance
of thy presence round us,
lest ever we should think thee absent.
In all created things thou art there.
In every friend we have
the sunshine of thy presence is shown forth.
In every enemy that seems to cross our path,
thou art there within the cloud
to challenge us to love.
Show to us the glory in the grey.
Awake for us thy presence in the very storm
till all our joys are seen as thee
and all our trivial tasks emerge as priestly sacraments
in the universal temple of thy love.

(George MacLeod, The Whole Earth Shall Cry Glory, pp. 13-14)

Against Stupid Mistakes

Lord, I hate when I do that--
when I make stupid writing mistakes,
usually because I'm too lazy to outline,
too careless in research,
or too rushed to revise,
or all three!
Please save me from my own stupid mistakes.
Make me more careful and conscientious.
Help me to write wisely and well.
Purge me of procrastination and presumption.
Give me grace to keep me learning, striving,
and constantly improving,
in Jesus' name, amen.

(photo by striatic via

The Unknown Waters of This New Year

O Lord,

Length of days does not profit me except the days are passed in thy presence, in thy service, to thy glory.

Give me a grace that precedes, follows, guides, sustains, sanctifies, aids every hour,
that I may not be one moment apart from thee,
but may rely on thy Spirit,
to supply every thought,
speak in every word,
direct every step,
prosper every work,
build up every mote of faith,
and give me a desire
to show forth thy praise,
testify thy love,
advance thy kingdom.

I launch my bark on the unknown waters of this year,
with thee, O Father, as my harbour,
thee, O Son, at my helm,
thee O Holy Spirit, filling my sails.

Guide me to heaven with my loins girt,
my lamp burning,
my ear open to thy calls,
my heart full of love,
my soul free.

Give me grace to sanctify me,
thy comforts to cheer,
thy wisdom to watch,
thy right hand to guide,
thy counsel to instruct,
thy law to judge,
thy presence to stabilize.

May thy fear be my awe,
thy triumphs my joy.

(from The Valley of Vision, a collection of Puritan prayers, edited by Arthur Bennett)