O Lord, we give you thanks that you have not left us in the dark to grope blindly through this world. Instead, in your grace and love you have given us your commandments. Help us keep them to the end. Enable us, in your strength, to keep your law and observe it with all our heart. Lead us with your Spirit so that we are not merely doing our duty, but delighting in walking the path you have set before us. Turn us away from the worthless things in this world which distract and lead us astray, and instead, give us the fullness of life you have promised us in Christ our Lord. For it is in his name for his sake we pray. Amen. (from Psalm 119:33-40)
God of the harvest, you call some of us to plant the seeds of the Gospel of the kingdom. Others of us you move to water the seed to bring the increase. And still, you beckon others to nurture and cultivate that which is already growing. In and through this process, it is you who gives the growth. We give you thanks that you call us to be a part of bringing others to new life in Christ. Yet, we are reminded, O Lord, that it is you and you alone who are sovereign over such things. We are called to be faithful to the Great Commission, but always trusting in you to bring forth fruit. In Christ’s holy name we pray. Amen. (from 1 Corinthians 3:5-9)
God of wisdom, I thank you that your wisdom is not like the wisdom of this age or the rulers of this age, who are doomed to pass away. Indeed yours is the wisdom for all the ages, for you are the infinitely wise God of all times and places, and you give your wisdom freely to all who humbly ask you for it. O Lord of glory, I hardly know how to praise you for that which you have in store for those who love you. But for the gift of your Spirit who reveals your wisdom to those who know and love you, I thank you. I bless and honor you for giving me the mind of Christ, not because I deserved it, but because you are gracious. May I use this very mind, and all the wisdom contained therein, to live for you now and forevermore. In Christ’s name I pray. Amen. (from 1 Corinthians 2:6-16)
Almighty God, Father of all mercies, we, thine unworthy servants, do give thee most humble and hearty thanks for all thy goodness and loving-kindness to us, and to all men. We bless thee for our creation, preservation, and all the blessings of this life; but above all, for thine inestimable love in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ; for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory.
And, we beseech thee, give us that due sense of all thy mercies, that our hearts may be unfeignedly thankful; and that we show forth thy praise, not only with our lips, but in our lives, by giving up ourselves to thy service, and by walking before thee in holiness and righteousness all our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory, world without end. Amen.
by Edward Reynolds (1662)
O Lord of Glory, I give you my thanks and praise for your promises. I cling to them and am humbled by them. I praise you that in Christ, you forgave me, redeemed me, and made me something new. Now that your Spirit lives inside me, I can increasingly become the person you created and redeemed me to be. I pray that by your grace and Spirit, you would give me both greater desire for, as well as success in growing in the following: to be poor in spirit so that the kingdom of heaven would be mine; to properly mourn, so I can receive your comfort; to become meek, so I may inherit the earth; to be satisfied as I hunger and thirst for righteousness; to grow in mercy toward others, that I might see you; to be a peacemaker, that I will be called a child of God; and that I might stand firm when I am threatened with persecution for the sake of righteousness, for again, the kingdom of heaven is mine. Gracious God, help me to become what and who you say I already in in Christ. For it is in his name and for his sake I pray. Amen. (from Matthew 5:1-10)
All praise goes to you my God, for you are my light and my salvation. I thank you that I, therefore, should fear no one, for you alone are the stronghold of my life. When all the world seems to be against me, when evil times appear to be prevailing, my heart will not fear, for you will hide me in your shelter on such days of trouble. I will cast all my cares and anxieties upon you for you will lift me high upon a rock. My thanks to you will turn into joyful songs because you are my God. I praise you my loving Father for your goodness to me and the courage you provide me each and every day. In your name I pray, Amen. (from Psalm 27)
from The Visionary Christian, by C.S. Lewis - p. 30
From all my lame defeats and oh! much more
From all the victories that I seemed to score;
From cleverness shot forth on Thy behalf
At which, while angels weep, the audience laugh;
From all my proofs of Thy divinity,
Thou, who wouldst give no sign, deliver me.
Thoughts are but coins. Let me not trust, instead
of Thee, their thin-worn image of Thy head.
From all my thoughts, even from my thoughts of Thee,
O thou fair Silence, fall, and set me free.
Lord of the narrow gate and the needle’s eye,
Take from me my trumpery lest I die.
Gracious Father, we thank you for the baptism of the Lord Jesus. As we read your Word, we remember the ways in which he became like us to be our perfect covenant head. Just as he represented us in life, so too he represented us in his death, resurrection, and ascension. We praise you for his active righteousness, even unto baptism. We know this pleased you for you declared that he was your beloved Son, with whom you were well pleased. Merciful God, thank you for saving us through the person and work of your beloved Son. Move us to live lives of grateful response and joyful obedience all the days of our lives. In Christ’s holy name we pray. Amen. (based on Matthew 3:13-17)
Loving Father, we give you thanks for our Lord Jesus Christ, who, even as a young boy, astounded learned men with his understanding. So focused on pleasing you was he, that he astonished his parents, even in the midst of their worry and concern. His love for and commitment to you was so great at an early age, that he knew he must be in your house. Gracious God, as our Lord Jesus, who at such a tender age knew, loved, and followed you so faithfully, enable us to do the same. Help us to increasingly grow in wisdom, stature, and in favor with you and others, even as we love and serve you and others. We humbly ask this in the name of our Savior. Amen. (from Luke 2:47-52)
Heavenly Father, we thank you for all your promises in Holy Scripture. Your promises give us hope, assurance, and confidence in the midst of grief, fear, uncertainty, and doubt. We thank you that you so lovingly provide these promises to us and for us. We humbly ask you to give us the faith to believe them and to live our lives as though they have already come to pass, because, in a manner of speaking, they have. For the fulfillment of your promises is certain and we can rest our hearts, minds, and souls upon them. You promise us that your children will one day all worship you together. You promise to teach us your ways so that we may walk in your paths. You promise to judge between the nations and to turn swords into plowshares and spears into pruning hooks so that, one day, we will know war no more. We pray for these things, even as we rest upon these promises. Come Lord Jesus. Amen. (from Isaiah 2:1-5)
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