A Prayer for Kindness in All Things

Dear Lord, I praise you as the essence of all things loving; You are complete in Yourself; You are unconditional in Love. In my heart I desire to be more like You, and I invite you to be with me as I move about through my day. When I begin to compare myself to others, let me remember that we are all made in your likeness, and that each of our bodies is a temple of Your Holy Spirit. When I am tempted to make judgments about the actions, behaviors, even the looks of others as a way of making myself feel better, come to my aid and bring about in me a spirit of contentment, a spirit of gratitude. Help me to treat each person I encounter as I would like to be treated, and fill me with loving kindness so that my thoughts, words, and deeds flow from Your spirit of unconditional Love. Let me remember You always; let me be ever aware of Your presence in each moment of my life, as I would surely cease to live, to move, to have my being if thought of me falls from Your mind’s embrace for the span of even one breath; for it is Your breath that gives me life.

I ask all these things through Christ who strengthens me.
Amen.

Lord, Let me Bring About Your Kingdom

My Lord God and my King, my life, my breath, my being, I crawl to you this early morning for the warmth of your embrace. Wake not only my body but my mind and my spirit to Your wonderful ways. Let Your mysteries humble me and Your love sustain me.

As I practice the call of love, let your Holy Spirit be my guide. Fill me with wisdom to act always in accordance with Your will. Send me strength to perform selfless acts of love, humility to see all as better than myself, and grace to endure suffering and trial of all kinds.

I long to be Your good servant. Guide all of my thoughts in meditation, all of my words in writing, all of my movements in exercise to be for Your greater honor and glory alone.

May You bless my interactions with others, my work at home, my play with my children, and my love with my husband.

May you bless our family with happiness and contentment and accept our gratitude for the miracle of life.

You are all in all. In You I live and move and have my being. Take away my worry and remind me of Your providence. Present me with countless opportunity to bring about your kingdom and every grace needed to answer your call.

Amen.

Prayer for Detachment

My Lord and my God, take from me everything that distances me from you. My Lord and my God, give me everything that brings me closer to you. My Lord and my God detach me from myself to give my all to you.
Amen.

A Prayer for Right-Seeing

There are times
it requires the entire will,
every muscle fiber, each heart-string,
to see those squashed banana pieces as jewels,
the bread crumbs as confetti,
the demands as opportunities for love.

There are times
I feel the heart reaching, insisting, pulling
on the harness of right-seeing, yoking
these phyical moments to the ever-lasting instant.

So when the dark douses my light
and plunging, sinking, drowning pride
brings its crooked despair,

breathe for me
and turn my eyes to the sky,
let the water recede
and the salt dry up the pity.

There are times
I feel the heart reaching, insisting, pulling
on the harness of right-seeing, yoking
these physical moments to the ever-lasting instant.

Remind me my image is yours.
I am made for the unconditionality of love,
the humility of Christ.

Amen.

A Prayer for Patience

O most Holy Lord, who has waited for us so long, who continues to wait for us each time we fail, each time we turn away, instill in me the virtue of patience so that I might be more like you.

Grant me the grace I need to be patient with my husband when he has a bad day, to be patient with myself when I have a bad day; grant me the grace I need, O God, to speak to my babies in loving tones even when I am frustrated and feel unable even to pray.

Help me, Most Gracious One, to be kind, to be content, to be at ease.  Let your Holy Spirit guide my emotions and my words, so that I might not only treat my family with unconditional love, but that I might be an inspiration to them and to others to grow closer to you in faith, in hope, and in charity.

I ask this through Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Amen.

Mary, Mother of God, pray for us.

A Mother’s Prayer for Tenderness

Lord, help me;
may I be understanding instead of judgmental;
may I be kind instead of quick:
may I be compassionate instead of angry,
and may I always remember
we are in this together.

Amen.

A Prayer for Our Children

Lord, you love our children so much.
Thank you for gifting me with them.
They are precious in every way.

Please help me understand them and lead and guide them in the best way.
Let me be a blessing to them and not a burden.
Open my eyes and my heart so that I may see them with your eyes and love them with Christ’s love.
Let me not see them from my own, sometimes selfish, perspective.
Let me love them not as I think they should be loved, but love them as you would have them be loved.

Please bless each of my children in heart, mind, body, and spirit,
that they may know you in faith, in hope, and in love.
Bolster them in their weaknesses, and guide them in their strengths.
Make yourself known to them.
Knock from the inside, and get them to turn around, seeing you for who you are,
the All-Love, All-Light, Creator of Existence, the Everlasting Instant.

Remind them continually to turn to you and to love the people of this world as Christ loves them.
Remind them that they are never restful until they rest in you.
And when they doubt, teach them that doubt is the brother of Truth.
And when they despair, remind them that despair is not necessary, as you are always there, beneath them, to catch them and to carry them on.

Send your Spirit to be with them.
Let your Spirit reside in their hearts, bursting with all the fruits and gifts they can bear.

May your Holy Spirit be with them.
May your Saints pray for them.
May your Angels protect and guide them.
May your Mother, Mary, keep them in her heart, her prayers, and under her mantle.

Amen. Amen. Amen.

Writer’s Prayer

Lord, you know my heart before I do, for in you it has been created. You know my joy and desire, my sadness and fear, and it is you who instills in me this inclination to write it out, you who inspires my songs, my lament and my celebration.

Let your Spirit inspire me again, and always, to write what you would have me share, to describe what you would have me realize, and to explain what you would have me understand. And when my words fail, when they are disordered and poorly chosen, bless the readers so that in spite of my messy page, they will glean what you wish them to find.

In this, and in all things, my gratitude abounds.

Prayer for Joy & Contentment, Peace, Hope, & Love

Dearest Mother of God, pray this prayer alongside me, you who have borne great trials and suffering, who knows what it is to be fearful, confused, and full of anxiety. Support and encourage me to ask and receive, to knock and let it be opened, to call and be answered. Be with me in spirit and in prayer as I walk my journey of motherhood.

O my God and Savior, release me from anxiety, save me from fear. Holy Spirit fill and consume me with truth, love, faith, hope, and life. Be one with me Lord, as I sit in the quiet of morning, as I run about through the day, as I rest in the evening, and as I sleep through the night.

In my deep limitations I can only see the door as locked, my calls unanswered. Please hear the silent cries of my heart. Know my needs before I do. Know my wants before I articulate them. Be my heart so that I am truly like you. Let my heart speak this prayer ceaselessly – as I wake, as I live, as I sleep. Let every breath and every heart beat sound your praise, worship, and oneness.

Be in my meditation, sit with me on my cushion, sit with me on the floor. Be with me in my moving, my stretching and opening. Be with me in my prayer, spoken and silent. Be with me in my loving, in my caring, in my playing, in my eating, in my cleaning, in my hoping, in my reading, in my working, in my writing, in my everything.

O Christ, hear and answer me. O Lord, hear and answer me. O God, hear and answer me. O Most Holy Spirit, hear and fill me with contentment and joy.

Amen.

Moment of Clarity Prayer

Lord,
be with me,
be with me when,
be with me when I am far from you,
be with me when I have forgotten all about you…

Amen,
amen, amen.

A Prayer for God This Day

Lord of Life,
this morning I give you
all my breaths, all my movements.
Take all my work, my thoughts, my words,
my deeds this day for your own.
I offer you even my sulking and sighs,
my selfishness and pride.

Let every bit of my goodness
be a prayer of praise,
a singing out for your glory,
every bit of my evil
a prayer of petition,
a crying out for your tenderness.

In all things I adore you,
even in my blindness
I search for you
for you are with me in all things.

You are mine
even in my weakness,
and I am yours
even in your strength.

Christ be next to me;
Holy mother of God stand beside me –
but even more –
Lord be with each of your children,
the abused and the abuser;
let your Love save and heal all,
for each of us stands in need of you.

May my living this day
pray this prayer over and again,
unceasingly.

Amen, amen.
Amen, amen, amen.

A Prayer for Peacefulness

Lord God, you are All in All. You have blessed us immeasurably with life and spirit. Continue to bless us with selfless love that we may care for one another as you care for us, and in so doing wash away our fears of abandonment, hopelessness, and failure. May we love each other with your sacrificial love so that our homes become sanctuaries, for in these gardens of forgiveness our children will grow and change the world. May we love and forgive without reserve, and may all people receive your grace, absorbing it like rain on well-watered ground. Open our hearts that we may know you in the midst of our conflicts. Bless us with your spirit that we may know the comfort of your peace. Be with us as we live moment to moment that we may understand humility and meekness. With a grateful heart, we ask all these things through Christ who strengthens us.

Amen.

For Emma (Prayer for a Third Birthday)

May the joy of the Lord be with you,

may Wisdom nestle in your heart;

may God’s Love surround you,

and from you never part.

Morning Prayer Liturgy of the Hours (Psalm 63)

O God, you are my God, I watch for you from the dawn.

My soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you.
I came to your sanctuary,
as one in a parched and waterless land,
so that I could see your might and your glory.
My lips will praise you, for your mercy is better than life itself.
Thus I will bless you throughout my life,
and raise my hands in prayer to your name;
my soul will be filled as if by rich food,
and my mouth will sing your praises and rejoice.
I will remember you as I lie in bed,
I will think of you in the morning,
for you have been my helper,
and I will take joy in the protection of your wings.
My soul clings to you; your right hand raises me up.

Prayer for Our Family (Blessed Teresa of Calcutta)

Heavenly Father, You have given us a model of life in the Holy Family of Nazareth.  Help us, O loving Father, to make our family another Nazareth where love, peace, and joy reign.  May it be deeply contemplative, intensely Eucharistic, and vibrant with joy.  Help us to stay together in joy and sorrow through family prayer.  Teach us to see Jesus in the members of our family, especially in His distressing disguises.  May the Eucharistic Heart of Jesus make our hearts meek and humble like His and help us to carry out our family duties in a holy way.  May we love one another as God loves each of us, more and more each day, and forgive each other’s faults as You forgive our sins.  Help us, O loving Father, to take whatever You give and to give whatever You take with a big smile.  Immaculate Heart of Mary, Cause of our joy, pray for us.  Saint Joseph, pray for us.  Holy Guardian Angels be always with us, guide and protect us.

Amen.

The Yoking (A Prayer for Unity, Christian and Otherwise)
We are caught inside this swath of love
this massive yoking
where we love one and are all-loving,
this massive yoking
where we love all and are love’s focusing.
Christ’s mystery and enigma,
this yoking love, this kingdom becoming.But in moments beneath love’s canopy
when rain falls for the thirsty and light shines for the hungry,
ice cracks brutal over the cold and heat scorches dry over the brittle.
So we walk under blue skies and dark ceilings,
through fresh breezes and dusty drafts.
We know the burdening yoke and its blessings,
the rough harness and its relief.

These are our joys and challenges,
the balance of a life,
the yoga of loving.

Oh, that we would have eyes to see and ears to hear,
hearts to love and hearts to be loved,
for in you all things are light.

Amen, amen.

Inspired by Pope Francis and Fr. Beaver’s calls for Christian unity, and by Jason Gray’s “With Every Act of Love.”

Peace

“Peace is not the absence of conflict, but the presence of God.” ~ a gift from my sister

The baby sleeps;
the kids play with ease;
they imagine monsters,
forget which of them is in charge,
and create a land with milk and honey flowing.

Peace is easy.

The clashing comes with tears
pouring and screams
piercing.  They pull, butt heads,
reach for leadership
and keep on screeching.

Peace is invisible.

The prayers do not cease;
we give thanks even for these moments,
it taking every fiber of our being,
but we find peace beneath the peel
of our arrogance, in the pith of our purpose.

Peace is God’s.

God’s Music

Standard

“Each one of us is merely a small instrument; all of us, after accomplishing our mission, will disappear.” ~Blessed Teresa of Calcutta

God’s Music

I pour milk
into cereal bowls,
wipe tears,
play cards

I pour water
into small glasses,
wipe the table,
play games

I wrap blankets
around little ones
shivering cold
from the bath

I wrap prayers
around hearts
shivering cold
at day’s end.

It’s time
to know our own needs
and know the needs
of each other.

It’s time
to pour, wipe, play,
and wrap,
to make music, to give back.

Christ in Love; Christ in All Things

Standard

“Through [Christ]…let us continually offer God a sacrifice of praise, that is, the fruit of lips that confess his name.  Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have; God is pleased by sacrifices of that kind.”  ~Hebrews 13: 15-16

My babies have been scooting

little cars and trucks over the furniture,

have been twirling themselves over the soft fuzz of carpet in the living room;

I sit at the top of my mat giving thanks and praise to God

for my life, family, prayer, and practice;

I cross myself in the name of our triune God,

hop to my feet, fold and roll my mat, and

my babies run, skip, and giggle toward me

holding out the purple velcro strap they know

I use at the very end.

My babies snuggle down to the bottom edge of their pillow,

pull the blankets to the bottom edge of their ear

and wait in their bed for a kiss.

I bend, lean, and reach over

tracing the cross on their forehead,

“God bless you, for ever and ever and always,” I whisper.

They pull my face close, small hands on my cheeks,

“God bless you, for ever and ever and always,” they whisper

in soft, tired voices.  They reach out their arms

for the hug they know comes at the very end.

Mercy wears a white onsie

The words of Jesus, ‘Love one another as I have loved you,’ must be not only a light for us but a flame that consumes the self in us. Love, in order to survive, must be nourished by sacrifices, especially the sacrifice of self.” ~Blessed Teresa of Calcutta

My yoga mat fits
perfectly beneath our crucifix

where I lie down in corpse pose
and am reminded of mercy.

Tonight my corpse-pose-prayers are convoluted –
tsunami waves and whirlpools –

but now my little one thwacks his two pudgy hands
onto my pudgy belly and crawls toward my chest

looking for my eyes,
he searches my neck and chin

until I lift my head
and bring my face close to his;

we are belly to belly,
nose to nose in love.

Tonight my corpse-pose-prayers are convoluted –
tsunami waves and whirlpools;

but now I climb gladly from the mat
for easy prayers and rubs and sleep

for tonight my mercy wears white.

A Prayer on the Feast of St. Nicholas (reposted from livingwithchrist.us)

Lord of miracles,

Open my eyes that I might see
the beauty and goodness of your world,
and open my eyes to the ways we have marred its beauty.
Open my eyes to the beauty and goodness of all your people,
and open my eyes to all the ways we exploit, wound, and kill each other.
Open my eyes to my own sinfulness,
that I may repent and live your life of compassion
and forgiveness a bit more deeply.
Open my eyes to the needs of the people around me.
Open my eyes to all the ways you come to me today.
Open my eyes to all the signs of love and kindness
others give to me today.
Open my eyes to all the signs of your coming in this Advent season.
Open my eyes to all the ways
I can be a sign of your coming in my work today.
Open my life, Lord, to this wonderful, graced world,
and the signs of your coming kingdom.
Open my eyes always, Lord, to your presence around me and in me.

Amen.
(A prayer for today from an Orthodox Hymn to Saint Nicholas.)

A Prayer for Holiness (reposted from livingwithchrist.us)

Lord Jesus,
I fear I am like your neighbors–
it’s still easier to see holiness in
the lives of special people like saints and popes
than in the day-to-day lives most of us lead.

Today, Jesus, help me
to open my eyes
to the everyday holiness
all around me.
And help me to pray:

For spouses,
that they may grow in holiness through
their self-giving love for one another.

For parents,
that they may grow in holiness
through their self-giving love
for their children.

For single persons,
that they may grow in holiness
through their self-giving love for
family, friends, and the world.

For clergy,
that they may grow in holiness
through their self-giving love
for their people.

For religious,
that they may grow in holiness
in their self-giving love
for one another in their communities
and for the people they serve.

For workers and businesspeople
that they may grow in holiness
through their work.

Lord, no matter our vocation,
help us to answer your call
to grow in holiness;
help us all to be models
of self-giving love for one another
and to pass it on to the next generation,
so that the love we learn to practice
may spread throughout the world.
Amen.

An Always and Everything Prayer (reposted from livingwithchrist.us)

The greatest among you must be your servant.

Jesus, as I go about my day today,
I will have many opportunities to put
others ahead of myself.
Help me to recognize those times
and to respond as you would have me respond.

I will have opportunities
to practice humility.
Help me to recognize those times
and to not take myself too seriously.

People will not always treat me
the way I deserve to be treated.
Help me calm my anger
and to respond with compassion.

Someone might criticize me
and make me feel small and foolish.
Help me to forgive and to turn
my pain over to you.

I may face times
when others take credit
for my work.
Help me to seek justice justly,
and to let go of what
is best forgotten.

I will meet people who need
my help or at least a kind word.
Help me to help them without
expecting praise and thanks.

I will be in a position
of power over others.
Help me to use this power
justly and selflessly
and for the benefit of all.

Lord, I will have many opportunities
to put this prayer into practice.
Forgive me when I fail,
and help me always to try again.
Amen.

Prayer for Courageous Action

Disturb us, Lord, when
We are too well pleased with ourselves,
When our dreams have come true
Because we have dreamed too little,
When we arrived safely
Because we sailed too close to the shore.

Disturb us, Lord, when
With the abundance of things we possess
We have lost our thirst
For the waters of life;
Having fallen in love with life,
We have ceased to dream of eternity
And in our efforts to build a new earth,
We have allowed our vision
Of the new heaven to dim.

Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly,
To venture on wider seas
Where storms will show your mastery;
Where losing sight of land,
We shall find the stars.

We ask you to push back
The horizons of our hopes;
And to push into the future
In strength, courage, hope, and love.

– Sir Francis Drake

St. Francis of Assisi Prayer

Most high, all-powerful, all-good Lord,
all praise is yours, all glory,
all honor and all blessings.
To you alone, most High, do they belong,
and no mortal lips are worthy
to pronounce your name.
Praised be you my Lord with all your creatures,
especially Sir Brother Sun,
who is the day through whom you give us light.
And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendor,
Of you most High, he bears the likeness.
Praised be you, my Lord,
through Sister Moon and the stars,
In the heavens you have made them
bright, precious and fair.
Praised be you, my Lord,
through Brothers Wind and Air,
And fair and stormy, all weather’s moods,
by which you cherish all that you have made.
Praised be you my Lord through Sister Water,
So useful, humble, precious and pure.
Praised be you my Lord through Brother Fire,
through whom you light the night
and he is beautiful and playful and robust and strong.
Amen.

Prayer of the Christophers

(reposted from livingwithchrist.us)

Father, grant that I may be
a bearer of Christ Jesus, your Son.
Allow me to warm
the often cold, impersonal scene
of modern life with your burning love.
Strengthen me by your Holy Spirit
to carry out my mission of changing the world
or some definite part of it for the better.
Despite my lamentable failures,
bring home to me that my advantages
are your blessings to be shared with others.
Make me more energetic in setting right
what I find wrong with the world
instead of complaining about it.
Nourish in me a practical desire
to build up rather than tear down,
to reconcile instead of polarize,
to go out on a limb rather than crave security.
Never let me forget
that it is far better to light one candle
than to curse the darkness,
and to join my light,
one day, with yours.
Amen.

Share your thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s