Prayer for Parish Diocese and the World
Father, you are the timeless and yet the creator of time. You who are infinite, have put all in place for us the finite, all that is necessary for our needs be it mortal or immortal. From the first day of rejection from the garden for Adam and Eve, you have made provision in mankind’s desire to improve itself, and in this rejection you removed immortality and replaced it with a limited life span and the choice of accepting or rejecting you. You are the one who provides the food we eat, the clothes we wear, and the roof over our head. There is nothing that does not come from you, for where man has sown the seed or made by his own hands, you are the one who has provided the means for growth or the materials to be used.
It is to you Father that we lift our hands in thanksgiving for your generous gifts from your ample storehouse. From time to time we find ourselves in that place where we look to our own capabilities as being of prominence, and we ask for your forgiveness in stumbling from the designated path. It is to you that we owe an unwavering faithfulness in return for the gifts and blessings that you have given, so that we may live a life based on your desires for us, and not what we desire for ourselves. Thank you Father for all that has been given to sustain us in our walk to meet you in this finite mortal existence.
To you Lord we also give thanks for the knowledge given of the infinite when we move on to be with you and the Lord Jesus. Your Son has taught us all what we need to know as time begins to be diluted by the way in which we see the future. He has provided all that is required for a victorious arrival home and the joy of being with all the faithful who have gone before. All that has been given shows us what a magnificent place eternity will be, for there enthroned will be an eternal Father and Son, supreme in love and peace, and we will be given all things new to make us a part of the glory.
Father, you are our past, present and future. Your purity is what we strive to acquire, but at the same time knowing that we cannot be equal with you, for this would place us in league with satan and his wolves. We are content to be sheep and place ourselves in the care of the Shepherd who tends to our every need, as we travel to meet you. Thank you Father for giving us time for decision and action in the free will that you have endowed us with. Thank you for your patience when our cumbersome pondering seems to mask all that you are offering. Blessed are you Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and blessed are we in having you as our Holy Trinity.
This we pray in Jesus’ name.
Scripture (Old Testament)
18 When I would comfort myself against sorrow, my heart is faint in me.
Jeremiah 8 KJV
Lord Jesus, there is so much trouble and strife in the world today that can easily pass me by if I should fail to keep my lamp burning. You came to be amongst us that we might learn from your teaching, and in the lessons and message placed before us I have found that there is a meaning to the life that that has been set before us all. In the lessons are the rules to live by and the help in achieving the goal that has been placed at the end of the race that I run. You have not only given the road ahead, but also the means to achieve what the Father desires of me as I take each step to reach the goal that I have set in my desire to do His will.
As each day passes there are more hurdles to overcome and challenges that need to be addressed, but you have provided the answers to all of life’s problems in your written word. My journey has been made easier thanks to your offer of placing my burdens on your shoulders when they become to heavy to bear on my own. When my sense of direction becomes cloudy you are the light that shines through the mist and beckons me onward. When I am wracked by indecision your gentle voice of resolution gives me the strength to move on. When I am all that I am not supposed to be, the pressure of your guiding hand is there to tell me to straighten up and move to what is expected of me. All these and more are placed before me in the written word to absorb and digest on my journey to meet you, and I pray Lord that with my failing of not listening all the time as I have moved through each stage of my life thus far, I will still be found acceptable to be with you when my time comes to face you in all your glory.
I am unable to comprehend the size and significance of all that you encompass, but this I do know, without your presence with me My life would be an empty shell and void of all fulfillment. Thank you for all the provision that has been given to keep my eyes and ears open to what is taking place here now, so that I can see what the future has in store for us.
Scripture (New Testament)
29 Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead?
1 Corinthians Ch15 KJV
Learning to live for others is another part of Christian discipleship. Some years ago, the title `The Man for Others' was in common use about Jesus and, though inadequate, it points up a vital aspect of his life. It was poured out for other people. And in this materialist and basically selfish society few things speak more eloquently for Jesus than sheer benevolence to others, giving without thought of anything in return. I shall not forget the amazement at a checkout in a supermarket when I heard the person in front of me say with dismay `Oh, I can't pay for all that.' So I said, `I'd be glad to make up the difference,' and I did. It seemed a natural thing to do and I had no idea that it would have any repercussions. But months later, when I went back to that store, I found they remembered me at the cash desk as the person who had paid someone else's bill! A tiny thing to do ... but unusual enough these days to cause comment.
It will be your job to excite your friend with the truth of Jesus' words ‘It is happier to give than to get‘. That - flies in the face of the world's values, but it lies at the heart of discipleship. Every Christian knows John 3:16. But 1 John 3:16 is just as important!
This is how we know love. He laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren:
If anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or speech, but in deed and truth.
Curiously enough, this learning to live for others is very closely related to one of the biggest hungers of our time. People are realising that materialism by itself does not give deep satisfaction. Moreover, the money market is highly volatile and jobs are increasingly scarce. People want to design their lives so as to gain maximum satisfaction. Leisure activities and private associations figure far more prominently than they used to in our priorities; and, above all, the longing for relationships. And when we start seriously learning to live for others we discover a marvellous fulfilment of those longings, though in a paradoxical way. Jesus said, `Whoever tries to hang on to his life will lose it; and whoever is willing to give his life away for my sake and the gospel's will find it' (Mark 8:35).
It seems improbable, but it is true. The Christian prescription of living for others is, curiously enough, the highway to discovering the very thing modern man is longing for - deep satisfaction.
How Can I Lead A Friend To Christ,
Five Finger Prayer
This is so neat. I had never heard this before. This is beautiful - and it is surely worth making the 5 finger prayer a part of our lives.
Canadian Bishops and Diocesan Representatives