For Such a Time as This – Pray All Y’All!!! – Praying with Fire

Beloved in Christ Jesus,

There are times in all our lives as Christians when we only pay lip service to prayer. We hold back. We encounter and sometimes even seek out noisy or appealing distractions. Our interest in prayer begins to atrophy and wane. We lack the umph for praying we seem to possess with ease when we are interested in and especially zealous for a person or a just cause.

At this point, instead of seeking the presence…and the mind…and the heart…and the wisdom…and the will…and the knowledge…and the agapé of our LORD God, we tend toward thoroughgoing idealism. In this position, we can miss the mark, if only by “just that much”.

With this tiny bit of background, I am going to take a rather tentative step in sharing some of my philosophy of prayer. I guess this will take shape as a series of articles. Please bear with me as we begin this exploration. Along the way, there will be encouragement, admonition, pleading, illustrations, inspiration, and (hopefully) enlivenment/rekindling of our Praying with Fire lives.

Where do we start? I submit that a position of humility puts us in a place of extraordinary potential. We Christians probably are at our most powerful when kneeling, not only or not just physically, but especially ontologically. That is kneeling with our whole hearts, mind, souls, strengths. Living beings. Humble before the sight of the LORD. Be-ing before the LORD as our true selves. Dependent. Contingent. Broken. Willful. Sin-soaked. Repentant.

With that in view let us use (with our whole hearts, minds, souls, and strengths) the prayer of General Confession from the 1662 Book of Common Prayer:

Almighty God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Maker of all things, Judge of all men: We acknowledge and bewail our manifold sins and wickedness, Which we, from time to time, most grievously have committed, By thought, word and deed, Against thy Divine Majesty, Provoking most justly thy wrath and indignation against us. We do earnestly repent, And are heartily sorry for these our misdoings; The remembrance of them is grievous unto us; The burden of them is intolerable.

Have mercy upon us, have mercy upon us, most merciful Father; For thy Son our Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, Forgive us all that is past; And grant that we may ever hereafter Serve and please thee In newness of life, To the honour and glory of thy name; Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Grace and peace,

Michael +

©2012 Fr. Michael Trent Shaw

All rights reserved.

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A Prayer for Those Affected by the Colorado Wildfires

A prayer in light of this:http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_20945863/several-fires-explode-across-front-range

O God, heavenly Father, who by thy Son Jesus Christ
hast promised to all those who seek thy kingdom and its
righteousness all things necessary to sustain their life: Send
us, we entreat thee, in this time of need, such moderate rain
and showers, that we may have surcease from wildfires and receive the fruits of the earth, to our comfort and to thy honor; through Jesus Christ our
Lord. Amen. (Book of Common Prayer, adapted)

A Prayer for Our Country

From : http://www.bcponline.org/Misc/Prayers.htm

Please consider using this prayer on an ongoing basis.

Almighty God, who hast given us this good land for our
heritage: We humbly beseech thee that we may always prove
ourselves a people mindful of thy favor and glad to do thy will.
Bless our land with honorable industry, sound learning, and
pure manners. Save us from violence, discord, and confusion;
from pride and arrogance, and from every evil way. Defend
our liberties, and fashion into one united people the multitudes
brought hither out of many kindreds and tongues. Endue
with the spirit of wisdom those to whom in thy Name we entrust
the authority of government, that there may be justice and
peace at home, and that, through obedience to thy law, we
may show forth thy praise among the nations of the earth.
In the time of prosperity, fill our hearts with thankfulness,
and in the day of trouble, suffer not our trust in thee to fail;
all which we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

It may be July 5, but our country still needs prayer!

From the 1928 Book of Common Prayer:

For Our Country.

ALMIGHTY God, who hast given us this good land for our heritage; We humbly beseech thee that we may always prove ourselves a people mindful of thy favour and glad to do thy will. Bless our land with honourable industry, sound learning, and pure manners. Save us from violence, discord, and confusion; from pride and arrogancy, and from every evil way. Defend our liberties, and fashion into one united people the multitudes brought hither out of many kindreds and tongues. Endue with the spirit of wisdom those to whom in thy Name we entrust the authority of government, that there may be justice and peace at home, and that, through obedience to thy law, we may show forth thy praise among the nations of the earth. In the time of prosperity, fill our hearts with thankfulness, and in the day of trouble, suffer not our trust in thee to fail; all which we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

AND:

A Prayer for Congress.

¶ To be used during their Session.

MOST gracious God, we humbly beseech thee, as for the people of these United States in general, so especially for their Senate and Representatives in Congress assembled; that thou wouldest be pleased to direct and prosper all their consultations, to the advancement of thy glory, the good of thy Church, the safety, honour, and welfare of thy people; that all things may be so ordered and settled by their endeavours, upon the best and surest foundations, that peace and happiness, truth and justice, religion and piety, may be establish among us for all generations. These and all other necessaries, for them, for us, and thy whole Church, we humbly beg in the Name and mediation of Jesus Christ, our most blessed Lord and Saviour. Amen.

AND:

For Courts of Justice.

ALMIGHTY God, who sittest in the throne judging right; We humbly beseech thee to bless the courts of justice and the magistrates in all this land; and give unto them the spirit of wisdom and understanding, that they. may discern the truth and impartially administer the law in the fear of thee alone; through him who shall come to be our judge, thy Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.

St. Bede’s Breviary – a resource for those interested in the daily office

Praying regularly, multiple times a day becomes easier and more rewarding with a resource such as this.

The purpose of the breviary: http://haligweorc.org/wordpress/?page_id=5

Take note that “Select a Style” and “Select a Sanctorale”  allow choices other than the 1979 Book of Common Prayer.

The breviary itself: http://haligweorc.org/breviary/index.php

My highest recommendation.

May you be blessed!

Prayer for our children…no matter what age!

God our Father, you see your children growing up in an unsteady and confusing world: Show them that your ways give more life than the ways of the world, and that following you is better than chasing after selfish goals. Help them to take failure, not as a measure of their worth, but as a chance for a new start. Give them strength to hold their faith in you, and to keep alive their joy in your creation; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

+++ from the BCP

A collect for mercy, forgiveness, and providence

Almighty and everlasting God, you are always more ready to hear than we to pray, and to give more than we either desire or deserve: Pour upon us the abundance of your mercy, forgiving us those things of which our conscience is afraid, and giving us those good things for which we are not worthy to ask, except through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ our Savior; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.