Aug 21, 2014

Labor Day: Congregational Prayer

Here’s a congregational prayer for Labour Day from Carol Penner’s Leading in Worship blog.

Congregational Prayer
for Labour Day

On this Sabbath day of rest, dear God, we turn to you,
with thanks for the work that you give us to do.

We work by night, by day,
inside and in the great outdoors,
we work in coveralls or suits or casual clothes,
we work sitting, standing, travelling by car,
we work with tools or books or instruments in our hands,
we work silently, with words, or with technology.
Whatever our work, it’s shape or size,  we do it for you.

Thank you for employment, for salaries and paycheques,
for the chance to labour and do our best.
Help us to remember that the work you give us to do, Lord
is not always work that the world values or pays for.
Bless our unpaid work of caregiving, whether for babies or children,
adults with disabilities, or seniors who need help.
Focus our eyes on the work that you value above all;
loving our neighbour, caring for the lowest and the least.

We ask for your forgiveness for the times we abuse the gift of work.
We give ourselves all the credit,
not acknowledging what we owe to you and to the efforts of others.
We are afraid to take on the work that you give us to do,
we are too lazy or too stubborn.
Sometimes we let work become a dictator.
We let it fill empty spaces in our lives
which should be filled with other things.
We neglect people we love because of our work.
Help us, God, to find you in our work, to look for you in our work.
Help us as we seek a balance of work and play.

Thank you for giving us this Sabbath day where we can rest,
where we can pause and say thank you
to the One whose work we are,
to the One whose work we do.

~ written by Carol Penner, and posted on Leading in Worship.

Aug 16, 2014

Prayer: Secure Our Steps, O God

Here’s a prayer of petition and intercession from reverendmother.  It was posted on

Secure our steps, O God—
on rough terrain,
on shifting sands,
on fine, wide roads,
on narrow paths.
Make our footsteps firm.

Secure our steps, O God—
in the boardroom,
at the water cooler,
in the school yard,
in the checkout line.
Make our footsteps firm.

Secure our steps, O God—
chasing after deadlines,
trailing after toddlers,
scrambling toward the finish line,
clamoring for security.
Make our footsteps firm.

Secure our steps, O God—
pacing through hospitals,
wandering through the hurt,
tripping over the unforeseen,
meandering through the grief.
Make our footsteps firm.

Blessing: The Trinity Restores You

Here’s a blessing inspired by Psalm 80.  It was written by Bill and Kristi Gaultiere, and posted on Soul Shepherding.

The Trinity Restores You
(inspired by Psalm 80)

The Trinity restores you;
they make their face to shine all around you
so that you are saved.

The Father loves you;
He makes his face to shine down on you
so that you are saved.

The Son graces you;
He makes his face to shine right beside you
so that you are saved.

The Spirit lives in you;
He makes his face to shine inside you
so that you are saved.

The Trinity empowers you;
they make their face to shine through you
so that others are saved.

~ written by Bill & Kristi Gaultiere, inspired by Psalm 80.  Posted on Soul Shepherding.

Aug 15, 2014

Collect for Labor Day

Here’s a prayer for Labor Day from Rick Morley’s blog (see below for link).

Labor Day Prayer

Lord Jesus,
we give thanks for work,
and for the many works you have given us to do.
Hear our prayers on this day of rest,
and strengthen us for the week ahead.
We pray that you would be present with those who work by day,
and those who work by night;
those who work near,
and those whose work carries them far away;
and we pray for those who in this uncertain time have no job.
We pray all of this knowing that your labors on our behalf never cease,
and that your yoke is easy, and your burden is light. Amen.

~ written by Rick Morley, and posted on the rickmorley blog

Pastoral Prayer for Labor Day

Here’s a prayer of intercession and petition for Labor Day.  It was written by Bob Traupman, and posted on Xavier University’s website.

Labor Day Prayer

Good and gracious God,
you told us from the very beginning
that we would earn our bread by the sweat of our brow.
We are interdependent in our laboring, Lord.
We depend on the migrant workers
who pick our lettuce and our strawberries,
the nurses’ aides who empty bed pans,
the teachers who form our children’s minds.

We thank you, Lord, for the gifts and talents you have given us
that allow us to earn a living and contribute something positive to our world.
We pray, dear Lord, for those who are without work.
Sustain them — us — in your love.
Help us to realize that we have worth as human beings,
job or no job.

But that’s hard to get, Lord.
Our society preaches to us that our worth comes from success,
of being better than the Jones’.
But our worth comes because You made us.
We are Your children, no matter what, job or no job.
You love us and you call us to love and support each other.
We pray, Lord, for those who do the dirty work in our lives, Lord,
those who break their backs for us,
those who are cheated out of even a minimum wage,
those who have not access to health care,
those who cannot afford to send their kids to college.

Help us to bind together, Lord, as a community, as a nation
because we depend on one another —
the garbage men, the police, the stock people in our grocery stores,
the UPS driver, the pilots, the 7/11 clerk, the ticket-taker on the turnpike
the plumbers, the accountants, the bank tellers,
the landscapers, the lifeguards,
those who clean our houses, the cooks,
the waiters, the steel workers, the carpenters,
the scientists, and yes, the writers.

Help us to realize this weekend
how dependent we are on one another, Lord.
We are one. We are family. We need each other.
Let us give thanks for each other this Labor Day weekend, Lord
Help us to celebrate and give thanks for each other and appreciate
the value, the dignity, the contribution
that each one makes to keep our country, our cities, our lives going.
And in tough times, help us remember the words of Jesus:

Come to me all you who labor
and are heavily burdened
and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you,
for my yoke is easy and my burden light
(Matthew 11:28)

~ written by Bob Traupman, and posted on Xavier University’s website.