On All Hallows' Eve

From ghoulies and ghosties 
And long-leggedy beasties 
And things that go bump in the night, 
Good Lord, deliver us!

(Traditional Scottish prayer)

A Prayer of Columba of Iona

Be thou a bright flame before me, 
Be thou a guiding star above me, 
Be thou a smooth path below me, 
Be thou a kindly shepherd behind me, 
Today - tonight - and for ever.

(a prayer of Columba of Iona; 
illustration by Comfreak via pixabay.com)

Just Like Jeremiah

Lord God Adonai, by your great grace 
make me, like Jeremiah, 
"a fortified city, an iron pillar, bronze walls," 
in Jesus' name, amen.

(based on Jeremiah 1:18)

Pity My Unsettled Soul

Jesus, Shepherd of the sheep, 
Pity my unsettled soul; 
Guide and nourish me and keep, 
Till Thy love shall make me whole. 
Give me perfect soundness, give; 
Make me steadfastly believe. 

I am never at one stay, 
Changing every hour I am; 
But Thou art, as yesterday, 
Now and evermore the same. 
Constancy to me impart, 
Stablish with Thy Grace my heart. 

Give me faith to hold me up, 
Walking over life's rough sea; 
Holy, purifying hope, 
Still my soul's sure anchor be. 
That I may be always Thine, 
Perfect me in love divine. 

(a prayer of Charles Wesley)

The Spring of All My Blessings

My Maker and my King, 
To Thee my all I owe; 
Thy constant goodness is the spring 
Whence all my blessings flow. 

The creature of Thy hand, 
On Thee alone I live; 
Thy countless benefits demand 
More praise than I can give. 

O let Thy grace inspire 
My soul with strength divine! 
Let all my powers to Thee aspire, 
And all my days be Thine.

(a hymn by Anne Steele)

I Dedicate Myself to Thee

Get Up Son

Lord I want to die 
in my sleep 
I want to go to bed 
and be awakened 
by you 
Get up son 
it's the first day of school 
the beginning of your new job 
the dawn of eternity. 
Here are your clothes. 
Your older brother 
wore them first 
now they're yours 
white and fresh and clean 
smelling of heaven.

(from Joseph Bayly's Psalms of My Life; sponsored link)


   Lord, I cast all my cares upon you. 
   I lay all of my burdens down at your feet. 
   And even though I don't know what to do, 
   I just cast all my cares upon you.


Be thou my vision. 
Be thou my wisdom 
and my righteousness. 
Be thou my peace, my wholeness, my Shalom. 
Be thou my kindness and grace, 
my health and rest, 
my light and salvation. 
Be my joy, 
my everything, 
my all-in-all, 
in Jesus' name, amen.


Lord, I know there are millions of travelers on the roads and rails, on the seas and in the skies today, 
and you love and care for them all. 
But please keep a watchful eye on me, 
in Jesus' name, amen.

Friend of Sinners

Jesus, thank you that you are a friend of sinners, 
or else where would I be?

Eternity Within

I thank Thee, O Lord, that Thou hast so set eternity within my heart that no earthly thing can ever satisfy me wholly. I thank Thee that every present joy is so mixed with sadness and unrest as to lead my mind upwards to the contemplations of a more perfect blessedness. And above all I thank Thee for the sure hope and promise of an endless life which Thou hast given me in the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen. 

(a prayer of John Baillie in A Diary of Private Prayer; photo by EvgeniT via pixabay.com)


Thank you, good God, 
for the things I don't possess: 
fancy cars, 
expensive clothes,
a boat, a plane, a jet ski,
a second mortgage,
a divorce settlement,
an alimony payment,
a bodyguard,
a fence around my property. 

Thank you also, Lord,
for the things that don't possess ME:
drugs or alcohol,
guilt or shame,
a need to maintain a certain lifestyle
or a desire to keep up appearances. 

Thank you that I am not afflicted with wealth, fame, or beauty, in Jesus' name, amen.

(photo by BarbaraBonanno via pixabay.com)


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

On My Favorite Daughter's Birthday

It's my favorite daughter's birthday, Lord. 
I still can't fathom, 
can't even process, 
that she is all she is. 

I'm still and always amazed 
at how kindly, fully, and generously 
you've answered my prayers 
and her mother's prayers 
for her. 

You have made her faithful like Ruth and regal like Esther, 
fierce like Deborah and brilliant like Abigail,
industrious like Lydia and a leader like Junia.

I give you so much praise and thanks
for my only daughter, 
my firstborn, my Blossom; 
for the child you gave me, 
the woman she is, 
the love we share, 
the pride and joy I feel in her, 
the blessings you've given her, 
and the blessings you've given me through her.

Please bless her abundantly today 
and in all the days to come. 
Keep her safe and well. 
Keep her marriage strong and beautiful. 
Prosper her and her husband, 
answer their prayers, 
supply their needs,
fulfill their dreams.

Let her children continue to grow in happiness, health, and holiness.
Reward Aubrey's love and faithfulness and diligence as a mom
with beauty and grace, 
charm and wisdom,
health and wholeness, 
integrity and strength in each of her children 
as you have done for me in mine.

Show her every kindness, 
grant her your favor, 
use her,
bless her,
hold her,
in Jesus' name, amen.

Simple Prayer

Let me live, love, and say it well in good sentences.

(a prayer by Sylvia Plath)

Working in Me?

Dear Lord, in the midst of much inner turmoil and restlessness, there is a consoling thought: maybe you are working in me in a way I cannot yet feel, experience, or understand. My mind is not able to concentrate on you, my heart is not able to remain centered, and it seems as if you are absent and have left me alone. But in faith I cling to you. I believe that your Spirit reaches deeper and further than my mind or heart, and that profound movements are not the first to be noticed. 

 Therefore, Lord, I promise I will not run away, not give up, not stop praying, even when it all seems useless, pointless, and a waste of time and effort. I want to let you know that I love you even though I do not feel loved by you, and that I hope in you even though I often experience despair. Let this be a little dying I can do with you and for you as a way of experiencing some solidarity with the millions in this world who suffer far more than I do. Amen. 

 (a prayer by Henri Nouwen, from A Cry for Mercy; photo by Talie79 via pixabay.com)

For Thy Royal Bounty

O my God, 
Thou fairest, greatest, 
first of all objects, 
my heart admires, 
loves thee, 
for my little vessel 
is as full as it can be, 
and I would pour out 
all that fullness before thee 
in ceaseless flow. 

When I think upon and converse with thee 
ten thousand delightful thoughts spring up, 
ten thousand sources of pleasure are unsealed, 
ten thousand refreshing joys spread over my heart, 
crowding into every moment of happiness.

I bless thee for the soul thou hast created, 
for adorning it, for sanctifying it, 
though it is fixed in barren soil; 
for the body thou hast given me, 
for preserving its strength and vigour, 
for providing senses to enjoy delights, 
for the ease and freedom of my limbs,
for hands, eyes, ears that do thy bidding;
for thy royal bounty providing my daily support,
for a full table and overflowing cup,
for appetite, taste, sweetness,
for social joys of relatives and friends,
for ability to serve others,
for a heart that feels sorrows and necessities,
for a mind to care for my fellow-men,
for opportunities of spreading happiness around,
for loved ones in the joys of heaven,
for my own expectation of seeing thee clearly.
I love thee above the powers of language to express, 
for what thou art to thy creatures.

Increase my love, O my God, 
through time and eternity. 

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

I Would Learn from You

I see your school is not an easy one, O Christ, but I would learn from you. 

 Train me. 
 Teach me. 


 (a prayer of Samuel Logan Brengle, in his book, Ancient Prophets)

Make Them Lovers of Your Word

(today's prayer for my children and grandchildren from the iPhone/iPad app, "31 Ways to Pray for Your Kids," available in the iTunes app store, here)

A Writer's Hymn

Take my life, and let it be consecrated, Lord, to Thee. 
Take my moments and my days; let them flow in ceaseless praise. 
Take my hands, and let them move at the impulse of Thy love. 
Take my intellect, and use every power as Thou shalt choose. 

Take my keyboard, and my screen; my desk and office chair, 
My pages, sentences, and words, my flittings here and there, 
My focus and my flow, my pacings up and down, 
My insecurities and fears, my grins, my groans, my frowns. 

Let every bit be used by you, the good, the bad, and ugly too. 
Make me better than I know to be, by being yours while being me, 
Let every word I type be true by coming first and most from you. 
Suggest, revise, inform, inspire, and take my writing higher and higher. 

Take my fingertips, let them be filled with messages from Thee. 
Take my will, and make it Thine; it shall be no longer mine. 
Take my heart, it is Thine own; it shall be Thy royal throne. 
Take my love, my Lord, I pour at Thy feet its treasure store. 

(based on and drawing from a hymn by Francis Ridley Havergal)

The Shehecheyanu Blessing

Barukh atah Adonai, Eloheinu, melekh ha'olam 
shehecheyanu v'kiyimanu v'higi'anu laz'man hazeh (Amein).

Blessed are you, Lord, our God, sovereign of the universe 
who has kept us alive, sustained us, and enabled us to reach this season (Amen).

(one of the prayers recited on the first two nights of Sukkot; illustration by @tomert via Dreamstime.com)

Who Is Like You?

Who is like you, Jesus, sweet Jesus? 

You are the light of those who are spiritually lost. 
You are the life of those who are spiritually dead. 
You are the liberation of those who are imprisoned by guilt. 

You are the glory of those who hate themselves.
You are the guardian of those who are paralyzed by fear.
You are the guide of those who are bewildered by falsehood.

You are the peace of those who are in turmoil.
You are the prince of those who yearn to be led. 
You are the priest of those who seek the truth. 

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