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EHS Practices – Week 8 – Day 2

THEME: A Living Rule

BREATH PRAYER: Father, set me on a path that leads me closer to Your heart.


SETTLING IN:

  • In a journal, note the day, time, and place you’re sitting.
  • Open with a few moments of silence. Rest, and breathe deeply.
  • Complete the following sentence in your journal: Today, I feel ________________.
  • Read these words slowly (aloud or silently):

“Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we will also bear the image of the man of heaven.” 1 Corinthians 15:49

Pray this week’s breath prayer and pause for a few moments of silence.

PRACTICE:
DAILY OFFICE

The Daily Office, also called Fixed-Hour Prayer, has been a practice of believers for thousands of years. The Bible tell us Daniel and David, as well as the disciples in the first church, prayed and worshipped multiple times each day. The practice of the Daily Office encourages us to turn our focus toward the Lord at regular intervals throughout the day, whether we feel close to Him or not, whether we feel like praying or not. Anglicans around the world regularly practice the Daily Office through praying two or three times each day (Morning, Mid-Day, and/or Evening prayer).

If you’re reading this, you have probably already set aside a regular time of prayer to “practice” each day. Today, in addition to your current time, choose another segment of time during your day when you can spend 10 minutes or so focusing your attention toward the Lord. Ideally, one time would be in the morning and another at night, but adjust as necessary for your schedule. Set an alarm or add it to your calendar so you don’t miss it!

When you arrive at your designated prayer time, pull up the appropriate prayer guide below, spend a few minutes in silence to remember the Lord is with you, and begin. The following prayer guides are based on the Daily Office published by Mission St. Clare, but feel free to adapt them for yourself. Read through the words slowly and prayerfully, speaking out loud if you desire.

MORNING PRAYER

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my strength and my redeemer. (Psalm 19:14)

Prayer of Confession

Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor. [Pause for a moment and consider what the Lord would have you confess]

Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.

Almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us all our sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen us in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep us in eternal life. Amen.

Psalm 26

Give judgment for me, O LORD,

for I have lived with integrity;

I have trusted in the Lord and have not faltered.

Test me, O LORD, and try me;

examine my heart and my mind.

For your love is before my eyes;

I have walked faithfully with you.

I have not sat with the worthless,

nor do I consort with the deceitful.

I have hated the company of evildoers;

I will not sit down with the wicked.

I will wash my hands in innocence, O LORD,

that I may go in procession round your altar,

Singing aloud a song of thanksgiving

and recounting all your wonderful deeds.

LORD, I love the house in which you dwell

and the place where your glory abides.

 

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy Name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory for ever and ever.

Amen.

 

A  Collect for Guidance

Heavenly Father, in you we live and move and have our being: We humbly pray you so to guide and govern us by your Holy Spirit, that in all the cares and occupations of our life we may not forget you, but may remember that we are ever walking in your sight; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

EVENING PRAYER

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my strength and my redeemer. (Psalm 19:14)

Prayer of Confession

Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.

Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.

Almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us all our sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen us in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep us in eternal life. Amen.

 

Invitatory Psalm (Phos Hilaron)

O gracious light,

pure brightness of the everliving Father in heaven,

O Jesus Christ, holy and blessed!

Now as we come to the setting of the sun,

and our eyes behold the vesper light,

we sing your praises, O God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

You are worthy at all times to be praised by happy voices,

O Son of God, O Giver of Life,

and to be glorified through all the worlds.

 

New Testament Reading

At that time Jesus said, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.”Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Matthew 11:25-30

 

Collect for Quiet Confidence

O God of peace, who has taught us that in returning and rest we will be saved, in quietness and confidence will be our strength: By the might of your Spirit lift us, we pray, to your presence, where we may be still and know that you are God; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

Closing Prayer

Let us bless the Lord.

  Thanks be to God.

The almighty and merciful Lord, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, bless us and keep us.

  Amen.

Digging Deeper: As you develop your Rule of Life, consider using the Daily Office as a regular practice.  The Daily Office can be found in the Anglican Book of Common Prayer as well as  Mission St. Clare.  There is even a mobile app for Mission St Clare so that you can have the Daily Office with you wherever you go.  If you decide to make the Daily Office Part of your Rule of Life, consider what time or times of day you will engage in this practice.  How many times a week will you do it?  Put it on your calendar so that you can schedule your day around it.  You may find that scheduling your day around the Daily Office is as impactful as the practice itself.

Summary: Write in your journal a brief summary (five sentences or less) of your practice.

Closing: Thank God for the many who have come before you and, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, have shaped foundational practices such as the Daily Office.  Father, set me on a path that leads me closer to your heart.


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Photo credit Markus Spiske

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