Welcome to Morning Prayer

Welcome! Consider this your invitation to join our on-line morning prayer group. We gather every Tuesday and Thursday morning at 8:30 a.m. Central Time.

We will take a break during the month of July.

If you would like to join us, simply  go to our Zoom hangout at the appropriate time.

We use the prayer liturgies below, which you are also welcome to use in your own context. Please note that the dates are primarily for the use of the prayer group. Prayers are not date specific except in terms of following the international prayer calendar from the World Council of Churches.

For more information about me, please see my primary blog, Spacious Faith.

Thanks for stopping by,
Joanna

June 29, 2017

O God, let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning
for in you I put my trust.
Teach me the way I should go,
for to you I lift up my soul.

Glory be to the Creator, and to the Christ, and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be. Amen.

Song: Psalm 16—The Path of Life

Psalm 16

Protect me, O God, for in you I take refuge.
I say ‘You are my God; I have no good apart from you.’
As for the holy ones in the land, they are the noble,
in whom is all my delight.

Those who choose another god multiply their sorrows;
their drink-offerings of blood I will not pour out
or take their names upon my lips.

God is my chosen portion and my cup;
you hold my lot.
The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
I have a goodly heritage. 

I bless my God who gives me counsel;
in the night also my heart instructs me. 
I keep God always before me;
because God is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. 

Therefore my heart is glad, and my soul rejoices;
my body also rests secure. 
For you do not give me up to Sheol,
or let your faithful one see the Pit. 

You show me the path of life.
In your presence there is fullness of joy;
in your right hand are pleasures for evermore.

Silence

Gospel Reading: Mark 8:1-21

The word of life.
Thanks be to God.

Silence

Reading: “Poetry Like Bread” by Roque Dalton 

Prayer

Holy One, we cry out to you: in the morning our prayers come before you.
Along with the worldwide fellowship of churches, we pray this morning for Uganda.
God, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Individual prayers may be spoken with the above response given.

Lord’s Prayer

God, in you we take refuge. You show us the path of life. In your presence there is abundance of bread and fullness of joy. And we give you thanks. Amen.

Blessing

I pray that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
may have power together with all the saints
to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,
and to know this love that surpasses knowledge,
that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Amen.

June 27, 2017

O God, let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning
for in you I put my trust.
Teach me the way I should go,
for to you I lift up my soul.

Glory be to the Creator, and to the Christ, and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be. Amen.

Song: Open My Eyes” by Jesse Manibusan 

Psalm 15

O God, who may abide in your tent?
Who may dwell on your holy hill? 
Those who walk blamelessly, and do what is right,
and speak the truth from their heart;
who do not slander with their tongue,
and do no evil to their friends,

nor take up a reproach against their neighbors;
in whose eyes the wicked are despised,
but who honor those who fear you;
who stand by their oath even to their hurt;

who do not lend money at interest,
and do not take a bribe against the innocent.
Those who do these things shall never be moved.

Silence

Gospel Reading: Mark 7:24-37

The word of life.
Thanks be to God.

Silence

Reading: From “Why I Stay: A Prayer” by Debbie Thomas (in Christian Century)

I stay because . . . I love stories, and I cherish the ones I first learned in your book. Because I am Eve and the apple makes sense to me. I’m Rachel and I won’t surrender my sacred objects. I’m Leah and I long to be loved. I’m Hagar, and I will name you in the desert. I’m Miriam and I am ever watchful. I’m the bleeding woman and I need the hem of your robe. I’m Mary Magdalene and I must bear witness by your tomb. I’m Junia and my story aches to be told. . . .

Because the path is winding, and you are a God worthy of perilous journeys. Because I need to wrestle, and you meet me at the river. Because this is no ordinary hunger, and your manna alone will suffice. Because you know the loneliness of the desert, and so do I. Because I will drown unless you part this water. Because the world is dark, but it shimmers at its edges.

Prayer

Holy One, we cry out to you: in the morning our prayers come before you.
Along with the worldwide fellowship of churches, we pray this morning for Sudan and South Sudan.
God, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Individual prayers may be spoken with the above response given.

Lord’s Prayer

God of compassion and imagination, Greatest Storyteller, give us the courage to speak your truth and the grace to hear it. Amen.

Blessing

I pray that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
may have power together with all the saints
to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,
and to know this love that surpasses knowledge,
that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Amen.

June 20, 2017

O God, let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning
for in you I put my trust.
Teach me the way I should go,
for to you I lift up my soul.

Glory be to the Creator, and to the Christ, and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be. Amen.

Psalm 14

Fools say in their hearts, ‘There is no God.’
They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds;
there is no one who does good. 

God looks down from heaven on humankind
 to see if there are any who are wise,
who seek after God. 

They have all gone astray, they are all alike perverse;
there is no one who does good,
no, not one. 

Have they no knowledge,
all the evildoers who eat up my people as they eat bread,
   and do not call upon God? 

There they shall be in great terror,
for God is with the company of the righteous.
You would confound the plans of the poor,
but
God is their refuge. 

O that deliverance for Israel would come from Zion!
When God restores the fortunes of the people,
Jacob will rejoice; Israel will be glad.

Silence

Gospel Reading: Mark 7:1-23

The word of life.
Thanks be to God.

Silence

Reading: A Dream of Trees” by Mary Oliver 

Prayer

Holy One, we cry out to you: in the morning our prayers come before you.
Along with the worldwide fellowship of churches, we pray this morning for Malawi.
God, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Individual prayers may be spoken with the above response given.

Lord’s Prayer

Holy One, let us bend our hearts; let us be involved; let us make music that is your goodness and light pouring out of us and into this world. Amen.

Blessing

I pray that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
may have power together with all the saints
to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,
and to know this love that surpasses knowledge,
that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Amen.

June 15, 2017

O God, let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning
for in you I put my trust.
Teach me the way I should go,
for to you I lift up my soul.

Glory be to the Creator, and to the Christ, and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be. Amen.

Song: Calm me Lord 

Psalm 13

How long, O God? Will you forget me for ever?
How long will you hide your face from me? 
How long must I bear pain in my soul,
and have sorrow in my heart all day long?
How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?
Consider and answer me, O my God!
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep the sleep of death,
and my enemy will say, ‘I have prevailed’;
my foes will rejoice because I am shaken. 

But I trusted in your steadfast love;
my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
I will sing to God,
who has dealt bountifully with me.

Silence

Gospel Reading: Mark 6:45-56

The word of life.
Thanks be to God.

Silence

Reading: “Field Guide” by Tony Hoagland 

Prayer

Holy One, we cry out to you: in the morning our prayers come before you.
Along with the worldwide fellowship of churches, we pray this morning for Zimbabwe.
God, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Individual prayers may be spoken with the above response given.

Lord’s Prayer

Holy One, Calm us. Heal us. Let us not be afraid when you come to us in the midst of the storm. Or give us the grace to let ourselves be carried to you. Amen.

Blessing

I pray that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
may have power together with all the saints
to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,
and to know this love that surpasses knowledge,
that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Amen.

June 13, 2017

O God, let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning
for in you I put my trust.
Teach me the way I should go,
for to you I lift up my soul.

Glory be to the Creator, and to the Christ, and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be. Amen.

Song: Come thou fount 

Psalm 12

Help, O God, for there is no longer anyone who is godly;
the faithful have disappeared from humankind. 
They utter lies to each other;
with flattering lips and a double heart they speak. 

May God cut off all flattering lips,
the tongue that makes great boasts, 
those who say, ‘With our tongues we will prevail;
our lips are our own—who is our master?’ 

‘Because the poor are despoiled, because the needy groan,
I will now rise up,’ says God;
‘I will place them in the safety for which they long.’
The promises of God are promises that are pure,
silver refined in a furnace on the ground, purified seven times. 

You, O God, will protect us;
you will guard us from this generation for ever. 
On every side the wicked prowl,
as vileness is exalted among humankind.

Silence

Gospel Reading: Mark 6:30-44

The word of life.
Thanks be to God.

Silence

From Walter Brueggemann: We who are now the richest nation are today’s main coveters. We never feel that we have enough; we have to have more and more, and this insatiable desire destroys us. Whether we are liberal or conservative Christians, we must confess that the central problem of our lives is that we are torn apart by the conflict between our attraction to the good news of God’s abundance and the power of our belief in scarcity — a belief that makes us greedy, mean and unneighborly. We spend our lives trying to sort out that ambiguity. . . .

The gospel story of abundance asserts that we originated in the magnificent, inexplicable love of a God who loved the world into generous being. The baptismal service declares that each of us has been miraculously loved into existence by God. And the story of abundance says that our lives will end in God, and that this well-being cannot be taken from us. In the words of St. Paul, neither life nor death nor angels nor principalities nor things — nothing can separate us from God.

What we know about our beginnings and our endings, then, creates a different kind of present tense for us. We can live according to an ethic whereby we are not driven, controlled, anxious, frantic or greedy, precisely because we are sufficiently at home and at peace to care about others as we have been cared for.

Prayer

Holy One, we cry out to you: in the morning our prayers come before you.
Along with the worldwide fellowship of churches, we pray this morning for Botswana.
God, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Individual prayers may be spoken with the above response given.

Lord’s Prayer

God of abundance, let us live according to the truth of your generosity. Amen.

Blessing

I pray that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
may have power together with all the saints
to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,
and to know this love that surpasses knowledge,
that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Amen.

June 8, 2017

O God, let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning
for in you I put my trust.
Teach me the way I should go,
for to you I lift up my soul.

Glory be to the Creator, and to the Christ, and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be. Amen.

Song: Simple Gifts 

Psalm 11
In the Lord I take refuge;
how can you say to me, ‘Flee like a bird to the mountains;
for look, the wicked bend the bow,
they have fitted their arrow to the string, to shoot in the dark at the upright in heart.
If the foundations are destroyed, what can the righteous do?’ 
The Lord is in the holy temple; the Lord’s throne is in heaven.
God’s eyes behold, the divine gaze examines humankind. 
The Holy One tests the righteous and the wicked, and hates the lover of violence. 
On the wicked he will rain coals of fire and sulfur;
a scorching wind shall be the portion of their cup.
For our God is righteous;
God loves righteous deeds; the upright shall behold God’s face.

Silence

Gospel Reading: Mark 6:1-29

The word of life.
Thanks be to God.

Silence

Prayer
Holy One, we cry out to you: in the morning our prayers come before you.
Along with the worldwide fellowship of churches, we pray this morning for South Africa, Swaziland.
God, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Individual prayers may be spoken with the above response given.

Lord’s Prayer

Healer of our every ill, we reach toward you in faith. Let us feel your power within us. Let us hear your voice name us. Let us get up and follow wherever you may lead this day. Amen.

Blessing

I pray that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
may have power together with all the saints
to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,
and to know this love that surpasses knowledge,
that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Amen.

June 6, 2017

Let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning
for in you I put my trust.
Teach me the way I should go,
for to you I lift up my soul.

Glory be to the Creator, and to the Christ, and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be. Amen.

Song: Healer of our every ill 

Psalm 10

Why, O Lord, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?
In arrogance the wicked persecute the poor—let them be caught in the schemes they have devised. 

For the wicked boast of the desires of their heart, those greedy for gain curse and renounce the Lord.
In the pride of their countenance the wicked say, ‘God will not seek it out’; 
all their thoughts are, ‘There is no God.’ 

Their ways prosper at all times; your judgments are on high, out of their sight; as for their foes, they scoff at them.
They think in their heart, ‘We shall not be moved;
throughout all generations we shall not meet adversity.’ 

Their mouths are filled with cursing and deceit and oppression; under their tongues are mischief and iniquity.
They sit in ambush in the villages; in hiding-places they murder the innocent. 

Their eyes stealthily watch for the helpless; they lurk in secret like a lion in its covert;
they lurk that they may seize the poor; they seize the poor and drag them off in their net. 

They stoop, they crouch, and the helpless fall by their might.
They think in their heart, ‘God has forgotten, God has hidden the Divine face and will never see it.’ 

Rise up, O Lord; O God, lift up your hand; do not forget the oppressed.
Why do the wicked renounce God, and say in their hearts, ‘You will not call us to account’? 

But you do see! Indeed you note trouble and grief, that you may take it into your hands;
the helpless commit themselves to you; you have been the helper of the orphan. 

Break the arm of the wicked and evildoers; seek out their wickedness until you find none.
God reigns for ever and ever; the nations shall perish from this land. 

O Lord, you will hear the desire of the meek; you will strengthen their heart,
you will incline your ear to do justice for the orphan and the oppressed, so that those from earth may strike terror no more.

Silence

Gospel Reading: Mark 5:21-43 

The word of life.
Thanks be to God.

Silence

Art: “Woman with Hemorrhageby Louis S. Glanzman 

Prayer

Holy One, we cry out to you: in the morning our prayers come before you.
Along with the worldwide fellowship of churches, we pray this morning for Lesotho and Namibia.
God, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Individual prayers may be spoken with the above response given.

Healer of our every ill, we reach toward you in faith. Let us feel your power within us. Let us hear your voice name us. Let us get up and follow wherever you may lead this day. Amen.

Blessing
I pray that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
may have power together with all the saints
to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,
and to know this love that surpasses knowledge,
that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Amen.