Prayers for Everyday

by Rev. Carlee Hallman


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PRAISE

O Lord, accept our songs
of praise for all your gifts to us
as we continue to live in this
retirement community.
Today the temperature is 50º on our balcony,
but our apartment is warm and toasty.
We praise you and give thanks
for those who have provided
for our health and comfort.
Praise for continuing friendships
and new friends.
Praise for good and ample food,
healthy activities,
and opportunities for helping others.
Praise and thanks for those who plan
and conduct our religious services.
Praise and thanks to you, Lord,
for the wonder of your love. Amen.

Psalm 147:1:
Praise the Lord! How good it is to sing praises to our God; for he is gracious, and a song of praise is fitting.

Hymn: Praise to the Lord, the Almighty

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MUSICAL GIFTS

Dear Lord, yesterday
my husband’s string quartet from church
played for the folks who live
in the assisted living part
of our three levels of care complex.
I joined the group for lunch
in a small café on campus.
The group practiced for an hour
and then played a concert.
My husband announced pieces
by Bach, Haydn, and Mozart.
About 35 residents attended
and seemed appreciative.
You inspired the players, Lord,
to share their gift of music with others.

Psalm 150:3-6:
Praise him with trumpet sound; praise him with lute and harp! Praise him with tambourine and dance; praise him with strings and pipe! Praise him with clanging cymbals; praise him with loud clashing cymbals! Let everything that breathes praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!

Hymn: What Gift Can We Bring


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CELEBRATION

Dear Heavenly Father, we have arrived home
after visiting my husband’s sister in Kansas
where she was celebrated on Sunday
for being the church organist
for 50 years. She will retire in June.
The congregation had commissioned
a special anthem based on Psalm 150
in her honor, which the choir sang.
After the minister preached, and
we had communion,
my sister-in-law played a special
postlude on the organ. Then the choir
served lunch to all who could stay.
It was a wonderful celebration
of one of your servant’s, Father.

Psalm 150: 1-2:
Praise the Lord! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty firmament! Praise him for his mighty deeds; praise him according to his surpassing greatness.

Hymn: When in Our Music God Is Glorified


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SINGING

In church on Sunday
we sing three or four hymns
and several responses, Lord.
We sing as an active part
of the worship service.
The adult choir and sometimes
a children’s choir also sing.
Angels sang when you were born, Lord,
and we look forward to someday
singing around your throne.
It is a joy to sing praises to you.

Ephesians 5:18b-19:
But be filled with the Spirit; as you sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, singing and making melody to the Lord in your hearts.

Hymn: Come, Christians, Join to Sing


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CHRISTMAS VILLAGE

O God of Love,
each year my husband
unwraps and places
a village of little houses
under the Christmas tree.
As a child I remember
looking at similar houses
that my grandmother
had under her tree.
They shone with a golden glow
from within, and I longed
for a happy home of my own.
Now that dream is part of my life.
You, O God of love,
have led my husband and I
to this time of fulfillment
of love and joy.

Psalm 84:3:
Even the sparrow finds a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, at your altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God.


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A JOYFUL NOISE

Reading through the hymnal, Lord,
is such a source of inspiration.
From “O God, Our Help in Ages Past”
written by Isaac Watts in 1719,
and “O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing”
written by Charles Wesley in 1739,
to “Here I Am Lord”
by Dan Schutte in 1981,
and :”Hymn of Promise”
by Natalie Sleeth in 1986,
we are blessed to have hymns
that express our needs and feelings.
Thank you, Lord, for the writers
and those who have set the words to music.
You speak to us in many ways.

Psalm 66:1:
Make a joyful noise to God, all the earth; sing the glory of his name; give to him glorious praise.


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THANKS AND PRAISE

Lord, the garden was drenched
by rain yesterday.
It needed it. Thank you.
The tomatoes are ripening
faster than we can use them.
People without gardens
are happy to receive them.
One of our zinnias is six feet tall.
The soil they give us for these gardens
is amazing, Lord.
Our garden path
is completely overgrown
with flowers.
Thank you. Thank you
for your bountiful gifts to us. Amen

Psalm 106:1:
Praise the Lord! O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good: for his steadfast love endures forever.

Hymn: Now Thank We All Our God