Praying the Sunset Prayer …

I’ll let you in on a secret
about how one should pray the sunset prayer.
It’s a juicy bit of praying,
like strolling on grass,
nobody’s chasing you, nobody hurries you.
You walk toward your Creator
with gifts in pure, empty hands.
The words are golden
their meaning is transparent,
it’s as though you’re saying them
for the first time.

Continue reading “Praying the Sunset Prayer …”

Autumn Trees …

The leaves are falling, falling as if from far up,
as if orchards were dying high in space.
Each leaf falls as if it were motioning “no.”
And tonight the heavy earth is falling
away from all other stars in the loneliness.
We’re all falling. This hand here is falling.
And look at the other one. It’s in them all.
And yet there is Someone, whose hands
infinitely calm, holding up all this falling.
— Rainer Maria Rilke from A Year with Rilke

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Thanksgiving Prayer (Family and Fellowship) …

Heavenly Father
we meet together
your people
one people
your family
bound together
with the woven chord
that binds all of creation together
fashioned from your love.
Brothers and sisters
children together
One family in fellowship
with you, its Heavenly Father.
May this be a time of joy
a time for growing
a time for strengthening
a time for loving
family time
quality time
together.
— John Birch.
Read more at: http://www.faithandworship.com/

As a part of nature’s wondrous cycle
Of new birth, growth, fruitfulness and death
We rejoice in the creation of new life,
For parenthood, the passing on of knowledge,
For understanding and the wisdom of years.
We are grateful for those who have gone before
Passing on to us our spiritual heritage.
May our lives blossom as the apple tree in Spring
May we become fruitful in thought and deed
And may the seed of love that falls to the ground
Linger beyond our time upon this earth.
— John Birch.
Read more at: http://www.faithandworship.com/

We bless you, God of Seed and Harvest
And we bless each other
That the beauty of this world
And the love that created it
Might be expressed though our lives
And be a blessing to others
Now and always
AMEN
— John Birch.
Read more at: http://www.faithandworship.com/

Thanksgiving Prayer (for the Harvest) …

For the promise of harvest
contained within a seed
we thank you.
For the oak tree
within an acorn,
the bread
within a grain,
the apple
within a pip,
the mystery of nature,
gift wrapped
for us to sow,
we thank you.
— John Birch
Read more at: http://www.faithandworship.com/

We see signs of summer’s passing in golden leaves,
shortening days, misty mornings, autumn glow.
We sense its passing in rain that dampens,
winds that chill, Harvest’s bounty placed on show.
Creator God, who brings forth
both green shoot and hoar frost,
sunrise and sunset,
we bring our thanks
for seeds that have grown,
harvests gathered,
storehouses filled,
mouths fed.
And, as your good earth rests
through winter’s cold embrace,
we look forward to its re-awakening
when kissed by Spring’s first touch.
— John Birch
Read more at: http://www.faithandworship.com/

God of harvest,
gardener supreme
you place us at the centre
feed us, equip us and
having provided for us
look to a different harvest
a fruitfulness of lives
in service to you
and others.
God of harvest,
feed us
prune us
harvest us
that our lives
might bring glory to you.
— John Birch
Read more at: http://www.faithandworship.com/