Sunday, January 06, 2008

New Year's Prayers

Three years ago I went to a Christian retreat center for New Years Day and I came across these two prayers. I don't know who wrote them or where they came from, but they particularly struck me, so I wrote them down and come back to them every year. As I go and spend some time on them today, I thought I would share them.

~~~

Father, I surrender the past year and give it up to you. I give you my failures, my regrets, and my disappointments, for I have no more use for them. Make me now a new person, forgetting what lies behind and pressing on toward that which lies ahead of me. I give you all my hopes and dreams about the future. Purify them by your spirit so that my will shall truly reflect your will for me. As I stand on the threshold of a new year, encourage me by my successes, challenge me by the power of your word, and guide me by your spirit.

~~~

You keep us waiting. You, the God of all time,
want us to wait for the right time in which to discover
who we are, where we must go, and what we must do.
Thank you for the waiting time.

You keep us looking. You, the God of all space,
want us to look in the right and wrong places for signs of hope,
for people who are hopeless, for visions of a better world
which will appear among the disappointments of the world we know.
Thank you for the looking time.

You keep us loving. You, the God whose name is love,
want us to be like you - to love the loveless and the unlovely
and the unlovable; to love without jealousy or design or threat,
and most difficult of all, to love ourselves.
Thank you for the loving time.

And in all this you keep us,
through hard questions with no easy answers,
through failing where we hoped to succeed,
and making an impact where we thought we were useless,
through the patience and the dreams and the love of others
and through Christ and his spirit you keeps us.
Thank you for the keeping time
and for now, and for ever.
Amen.

2 comments:

Silver Valley Girl said...

perfect prayers for the New Year. Thanks for sharing.

Melissa said...

That "surrendering" thing... Boy I'm bad about that! I may have to copy that first prayer for myself.