The request of the disciples recorded in the opening verses of Luke 11 are timely words for us to echo as we navigate these difficult days: “Lord, teach us to pray.” What follows immediately as Jesus’ answer is what we now know as the Lord’s Prayer.
Because of the liturgies and practices in my own faith tradition, not a week of public/corporate worship in my history, even from childhood, has passed without a public/corporate recitation of the prayer Jesus taught. I’ve often wondered why we don’t all engage in praying this prayer together when we gather together for worship. I’ve increasingly met kids and even adults who are followers of Jesus who have never learned to pray The Lord’s Prayer.
Over the last three-plus months, The Lord’s Prayer along with the several prayers in The Book Of Common Prayer have served to help me pray in a timely way for things that matter. . . things that matter both within and without. The Book Of Common Prayer includes a section on “Morning Prayer” that has been a helpful and faithful companion. It begins with The Lord’s Prayer. I hope and pray that God is using these prayers to shape/re-shape me where needed. I’m sharing it here in the hope that it might serve you as it has served me. Consider starting your day with these prayers. . .
OUR Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your Name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen
ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, in Whom we live and move and have our being; We, Your needy creatures, render You our humble praises, for Your preservation of us from the beginning of our lives to this day, and especially for having delivered us from the dangers of the past night. For these Your mercies, we bless and magnify Your glorious Name; humbly begging You to accept this our morning sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving; for His sake who lay down in the grave, and rose again for us, Your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.
AND since it is of Your mercy, O gracious Father, that another day is added to our lives; We here dedicate both our souls and our bodies to You and Your service, in a sober, righteous, and godly life: in which resolution, do You, O merciful God, confirm and strengthen us; that, as we grow in age, we may grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.
BUT, O God, who knows the weakness and corruption of our nature, and the manifold temptations with which we daily meet; We humbly beg You to have compassion on our infirmities, and to give us the constant assistance of Your Holy Spirit; that we may be effectually restrained from sin, and incited to our duty. Imprint upon our hearts such a dread of Your judgements, and such a grateful sense of Your goodness to us, as may make us both afraid and ashamed to offend You. And, above all, keep in our minds a lively remembrance of that great day, in which we must give a strict account of our thoughts, words, and actions to Him Whom You has appointed the Judge of living and dead, Your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
IN particular, we implore Your grace and protection for the ensuing day. Keep us temperate in all things, and diligent in our several callings. Grant us patience under our afflictions. Give us grace to be just and upright in all our dealings; quiet and peaceable; full of compassion; and ready to do good to all men, according to our abilities and opportunities. Direct us in all our ways. Defend us from all dangers and adversities; and be graciously pleased to take us, and all who are dear to us, under Your fatherly care and protection. These things, and whatever else You shall see to be necessary and convenient to us, we humbly beg, through the merits and mediation of Your Son Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour. Amen.