Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Behold Thy Gracious Hand! Family...

Another prayer of gratitude for God’s gracious hand - upon my family. Again, I draw on The Book of Common Prayer. Do you find the language outdated or uplifting?

Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who settest the solitary 
in families: We commend to thy continual care the homes in
 which thy people dwell. Put far from them, we beseech thee, every root of bitterness, the desire of vainglory, and the pride
 of life. Fill them with faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance,
 patience, godliness. Knit together in constant affection those
 who, in holy wedlock, have been made one flesh. Turn the
 hearts of the parents to the children, and the hearts of the
 children to the parents; and so enkindle fervent charity among
 us all, that we may evermore be kindly affectioned one 
to another; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Father God, family is a fragile ecosystem. Thankfully, mine isn’t auditioning for a reality show. Yes, there are worries and challenges, but that’s for another prayer. This is about gratitude!

For my wife (and partner) of thirty-three years. For our grown children who care for and support one another. For parents who have enjoyed long lives and good health. For Aunts, Uncles and Cousins who stay in touch.

When we’re reunited at holidays it’s a true joy, one of those thin places where heaven and earth intersect. My cup runneth over!

The Prayer Book’s archaic language calls us to companionship, mutual trust, interdependence and belonging - a definition of family.

I pray for that constant affection in my marriage…

So knit our wills together in your will, and our spirits in your Spirit, that we may live together in love and peace all the days of our life.

I pray for that fervent charity among my children…

Into your hands, O God, we place our children. Support them in their successes and in their failures, in their joys and in their sorrows. As they grow in age, may they grow in grace, and in the knowledge of their Savior Jesus Christ.

I pray that we will be kindly affectioned one to another. Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer:
- Prayers and Thanksgivings, For Families
- Thanksgiving for a Child