Between Heaven and Earth - Prayers and Reflections of Others #5

Discussion in 'Spirituality/Worship' started by LittleBluestem, Mar 21, 2007.

  1. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    #4 went to two pages (before I deleted the last post), so it’s time for #5.

    I am using this thread to post quotations(which appear to be public domain) from the book Between Heaven and Earth by Ken Gire. I am currently in Part Three: Who Prays?

    Others are welcome to add inspirational prayers and insightful, thought provoking commentary about prayer.[This Message was Edited on 03/25/2007]
  2. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    The following quotes are from the section titled “People from Around the World”.
  3. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    Zimbabwe

    In Mbereshi is girls’ school, founded by Miss Mabel Shaw and noteworthy for the way in which the African heritage has been conserved, enriched and ennobled through the spirit of Christ. Here Christianity is not a western faith, but has the feel and flavor of Africa.

    The school is a “tribe” in miniature, centered around an invisible chief whose commandment of love is the tribal law. The following prayer is taken from Miss Shaw’s fascinating book God’s Candlelights - a prayer voiced one evening by a little girl.

    O Thou Great Chief, light a candle in my heart that I may see what is therein, and sweep the rubbish from thy dwelling place.
  4. Lms526

    Lms526 New Member



    A few years ago, I picked up this little book called "My Personal Daily Prayer Book" It has a prayer and a Bible verse for every day of the year. Here is the one for today. I know I could relate to it. Hope it is a blessing to all of you as well. The authors are Christine Dallman and Margaret Anne Huffman. Enjoy

    "When change comes Lord, I'm not always prepared to view it in a positive light, but help me not to dwell on my fears and on all the things that could go wrong. Instead, show me what positive things might result from this new development. Then, as I focus on the good, you will turn my fears into faith-faith that you are carrying me along, teaching me to trust, helping me grow stronger, and showing me a new part of Your plan for my life. Give me courage to embrace the adventure and trust that You are leading me towards something wonderful."


    [This Message was Edited on 03/22/2007]
  5. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    Lms526, I have copied and saved that prayer. I think that a lot of us have difficulty with viewing the changes brought about by our illness in a positive light and with trusting that it is leading toward something wonderful.
  6. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    China

    After a four months’ refugee Bible class in which a number of illiterate women had learned to read, the day came when they were returning to their homes. At the meeting before parting, one of the women prayed:
    <PRE> We are going home to many who cannot read. So, Lord, make us
    Bibles so that those who cannot read the Book can read it in us.</PRE>
    <FONT FACE="Book Antiqua"><FONT SIZE=+1>Even when those around us can read, I think that we should pray that we may live in such a way that we are examples of God’s Word. </FONT></FONT>
  7. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    <B>Alaskan Eskimo</B>

    To thee, the God of truth, of light and of love, to thee I speak, thou who art highest and holiest and noblest. I know that there is bad about me; when thou seest it, forget. I am like others of mine own people - of the spirits we were afraid. Our chief thought was to get food and fur to make our bodies comfortable. In this we were like the beasts - they want only a warm place in which to lie down with a full stomach.

    From the beginning we lived in fear, in ignorance, and in darkness, but now from afar we see light arising; but alas! in the faint light we see the filth of our lives.

    We understand that thou art our great father whose heart is filled with love for us; that thou dost love all truth and mercy and light and cleanness and goodness, and that thou dost hate the false and the dark and the cruel and the dirty and the bad. So we pray - make the light brighter that we may see more clearly and learn more of thee. Cause us to hate that which thou dost hate and to love that which thou dost love.

    Father, I and my people will be strong for thee; we will fight against the bad; we will fight for the good; we will use our heads and our hearts and our hands and our feet and our tongues and all that we have to follow the truth to gratify and please thee.
  8. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    <B>Kenya</B>

    From the cowardice that dare not face new truth
    From the laziness that is contented with half truth
    From the arrogance that thinks it knows all truth,
    Good Lord, deliver me.
  9. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    Japanese New Years Prayer
    <FONT SIZE=-1>This prayer, by Dr. Toyohiko Kagawa, was written for Japanese children</FONT>

    Our Father, we thank thee for the beauty of this New Year’s Day. We thank thee for the New Year’s decorations of pine, bamboo, and plum placed at each gateway. They turn our thoughts to thee for they have been chosen from thy generous store of natural beauty.

    Teach us this year to learn their meaning and their message to us. Like the pine, may we be unchangingly steadfast. Like the bamboo, may we bend without breaking during the storms and, when the storm has passed, may we be straighter and stronger. Like the inconspicuous plum flower blooming among the falling flakes of snow, may we bloom courageously and give fragrance to the air about us reminding men that spring is near.

    As thou art in the trees giving life an strength and beauty, be in our hearts that we may glorify thy Son, our Savoir Jesus Christ in whose name we pray. Amen.
  10. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    A little boy leading prayer at the opening of school:

    Our hearts are like a book full of mistakes. Take thy eraser ... Lord, and erase all our faults.
  11. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    The following quotes are from the section titled “People from Across the Centuries”.
  12. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    A prayer of Moses the man of God.
    <PRE>
    Lord, you have been our dwelling place
    throughout all generations.

    Before the mountains were born
    or you brought forth the earth and the world,
    from everlasting to everlasting you are God.

    You turn men back to dust,
    saying, "Return to dust, O sons of men."

    For a thousand years in your sight
    are like a day that has just gone by,
    or like a watch in the night.

    You sweep men away in the sleep of death;
    they are like the new grass of the morning-

    though in the morning it springs up new,
    by evening it is dry and withered.

    We are consumed by your anger
    and terrified by your indignation.

    You have set our iniquities before you,
    our secret sins in the light of your presence.

    All our days pass away under your wrath;
    we finish our years with a moan.

    The length of our days is seventy years—
    or eighty, if we have the strength;
    yet their span is but trouble and sorrow,
    for they quickly pass, and we fly away.

    Who knows the power of your anger?
    For your wrath is as great as the fear that is due you.

    Teach us to number our days aright,
    that we may gain a heart of wisdom.

    Relent, O LORD! How long will it be?
    Have compassion on your servants.

    Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love,
    that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.

    Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us,
    for as many years as we have seen trouble.

    May your deeds be shown to your servants,
    your splendor to their children.

    May the favor of the Lord our God rest upon us;
    establish the work of our hands for us—
    yes, establish the work of our hands.
    </PRE>
    <FONT FACE="Book Antiqua"><FONT SIZE=+1>
    I think it was on Easter morning that Moses’ prayer to “Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love” was answered. Now we can “sing for joy and be glad all our days” knowing that we will spend eternity with our Lord.

    Notice that Moses does not expect a life of perpetual happiness. He asks merely “Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us, for as many years as we have seen trouble.” </FONT></FONT>
  13. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    A Prayer of David
    <PRE>
    O LORD, you have searched me
    and you know me.
    You know when I sit and when I rise;
    you perceive my thoughts from afar.
    You discern my going out and my lying down;
    you are familiar with all my ways.
    Before a word is on my tongue
    you know it completely, O LORD.

    You hem me in—behind and before;
    you have laid your hand upon me.
    Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too lofty for me to attain.

    Where can I go from your Spirit?
    Where can I flee from your presence?
    If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
    if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
    If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
    if I settle on the far side of the sea,
    even there your hand will guide me,
    your right hand will hold me fast.

    If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me
    and the light become night around me,"
    even the darkness will not be dark to you;
    the night will shine like the day,
    for darkness is as light to you.

    For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother's womb.
    I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.
    My frame was not hidden from you
    when I was made in the secret place.
    When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,
    your eyes saw my unformed body.
    All the days ordained for me
    were written in your book
    before one of them came to be.

    How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
    How vast is the sum of them!
    Were I to count them,
    they would outnumber the grains of sand.
    </PRE>
    <FONT FACE="Book Antiqua"><FONT SIZE=+1>
    The Fernado Ortega song "if I flee on morning wings" based on this Psalm is one of my favorites. </FONT></FONT>
  14. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    A Prayer of Jesus

    Our Father which art in heaven,
    Hallowed be Thy name.

    Thy kingdom come,
    Thy will be done in earth,
    As it is in heaven.

    Give us this day our daily bread
    And forgive us our debts,
    As we forgive our debtors.

    And lead us not into temptation,
    But deliver us from evil:

    For Thine is the kingdom,
    and the power,
    and the glory,
    for ever.
    Amen.
  15. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    <FONT SIZE=-1>(ca. 1225-1274) Italian philosopher and theologian.</FONT>

    Most merciful God, order my day so that I may know what you want me to do, and then help me to do it. Let me not be elated by success or depressed by failure. I want only to take pleasure in what pleases you, and only to grieve at what displeases you.

    For the sake of your love, I would willingly forgo all temporal comforts. May all the joys in which you have no part weary me. May all the work which you do not prompt be tedious to me.

    Let my thoughts frequently turn to you, that I may be obedient to you without complaint, patient without grumbling, cheerful without self-indulgence, contrite without dejection, and serious without solemnity. Let me hold you in awe without feeling terrified of you, and let me be an example to others without any trace of pride.

    <FONT FACE="Book Antiqua"><FONT SIZE=+1>
    Due to copyright, I do not copy all of the information about the author. One thing that it says about Aquinas is that he came to view his prodigious theological works as valueless when compared to a direct encounter with God. I wonder, though, how many people ever have a direct encounter with God. I also wonder if I would really want to have a direct encounter with God. Although Aquinas prays “Let me hold you in awe without feeling terrified of you”, I am not sure that I am up to a direct encounter with God.
    </FONT> </FONT>[This Message was Edited on 04/29/2007]
  16. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    <FONT SIZE=-1>(1380-1471) German monk and mystic best known as the author of The Imitation of Christ.</FONT>

    Grant me, O Lord, to know what is worth knowing,
    to love what is worth loving,
    to praise what delights you most,
    to value what is precious in your sight,
    to hate what is offensive to you.

    Do not let me judge by what I see,
    nor pass sentence according to what I hear,
    but to judge rightly between things that differ,
    and above all to search out and to do what pleases you,
    through Jesus Christ our Lord.
  17. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    <FONT SIZE=-1>(1483-1546) Theologian, teacher, and writer who started the Protestant Reformation.</FONT>

    Behold, Lord, an empty vessel that needs to be filled. My Lord, fill it. I am weak in the faith; strengthen thou me. I am cold in love; warm me and make me fervent that my love may go out to my neighbour. I do not have strong and firm faith; at times I doubt and an unable to trust thee altogether. O Lord, help me.
    <FONT FACE="Book Antiqua"><FONT SIZE=+1>If Martin Luther was weak in faith, I wonder what that would make the rest of us? </FONT></FONT>
  18. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    from The Brothers Karamozov

    Young man, be not forgetful of prayer. Every time you pray, if your prayer is sincere, there will be new feeling and new meaning in it, which will give you fresh courage, and you will understand that prayer is an education.