John 18:33-37 – “Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

John 18:33-37

33Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” 34Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” 35Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” 36Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” 37Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
  • Push back your shoulders as you breathe deeply, allowing your chest to expand fully and free you from any tension.
  • Continue to be opened by the breath.
  • Jesus came into this world to be Lord of those who belong to the truth.
  • How do you follow the truth?
  • What voice of Jesus do you hear?
  • What words are written on your heart?
  • What words rise to your lips?
  • How does Jesus want you to respond to the truth?
  • What is God’s message for you?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, November 18, 2018, the Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

1 Samuel 1:4-20
1 Samuel 2:1-10
Hebrews 10:11-14 (15-18) 19-25
Mark 13:1-8

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings. (c) 2018 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD

Mark 10:2-16 – Whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it

Mark 10:2-16

2Some Pharisees came, and to test him they asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?” 3He answered them, “What did Moses command you?” 4They said, “Moses allowed a man to write a certificate of dismissal and to divorce her.” 5But Jesus said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart he wrote this commandment for you. 6But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ 7‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, 8and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. 9Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

10Then in the house the disciples asked him again about this matter. 11He said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her; 12and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.”

13People were bringing little children to him in order that he might touch them; and the disciples spoke sternly to them. 14But when Jesus saw this, he was indignant and said to them, “Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. 15Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.” 16And he took them up in his arms, laid his hands on them, and blessed them.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
  • Let go of any tension in your shoulders.  Be opened by the Breath.  Seek freedom.
  • Place your hands palms up in your lap.
  • Imagine holding a ball.
  • What does the ball look like? Is it large or small?  What color is the ball?
  • How do you desire to play with the ball?
  • Imagine playing with the ball.
  • What do you feel when you play with the ball?
  • Is there someone playing with you?  Or are you alone?
  • What are you playing?
  • Notice your surroundings.  Where are you?
  • Be open to Christ.  Where do you find Christ?
  • What playfulness do you encounter?
  • What is Christ’s message for you?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, October 7, 2018, the Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

Job 1:1, 2:1-10
Psalm 26:1-12
Hebrews 1:1-4, 2:5-12
Mark 10:2-16

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings. (c) 2018 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD

Hebrews 5:5-10 He learned obedience through what he suffered

Garden of Gethsemane

HEBREWS 5:5-10

5So also Christ did not glorify himself in becoming a high priest, but was appointed by the one who said to him,
“You are my Son,
today I have begotten you”;
6as he says also in another place,
“You are a priest forever,
according to the order of Melchizedek.”

7In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to the one who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. 8Although he was a Son, he learned obedience through what he suffered; 9and having been made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him, 10having been designated by God a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying attention to the deep breath.
  • It is a new day.
  • How will you obey Christ today?
  • Search your heart to know what is written there.
  • What do you need to put aside to obey Christ?
  • What is God’s message to you?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, March 18, 2018, the Fifth Sunday in Lent Year B
Jeremiah 31:31-34
Psalm 51:1-12
Psalm 119:9-16
Hebrews 5:5-10
John 12:20-33

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author.
Permission to use in not-for-profit settings
(c) 2018 The Rev. Lil Smith, M.Div., DASD

1 Corinthians 1:10-18 Let there be no divisions among you

1 Corinthians 1:10-18

10Now I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you be in agreement and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same purpose. 11For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there are quarrels among you, my brothers and sisters. 12What I mean is that each of you says, “I belong to Paul,” or “I belong to Apollos,” or “I belong to Cephas,” or “I belong to Christ.” 13Has Christ been divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 14I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, 15so that no one can say that you were baptized in my name. 16(I did baptize also the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized anyone else.) 17For Christ did not send me to baptize but to proclaim the gospel, and not with eloquent wisdom, so that the cross of Christ might not be emptied of its power.

18For the message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
  • Scan your body.  Notice any tension that is binding you.
  • What is this division in you that is keeping you from being united with Christ?
  • Let the feelings of the division come.  Give the division a name.
  • Bring this division to the cross and invite Christ into this space.  Do not hide it any longer.  Let the Compassionate Christ remove this burden from you so that you may be freed for Christ in Christ.
  • Where do you feel the freedom in you?
  • How does Christ ask you to respond?
  • What is God’s message for you?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, January 22, 2017, the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A)

Isaiah 9:1-4
Psalm 27:1, 4-9
1 Corinthians 1:10-18
Matthew 4:12-23

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings (c) 2017 The Rev. Lil Smith, M.Div., DASD

Psalm 148 – Unmerited Joy!

angel announcesPsalm 148

1Praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord from the heavens;
praise him in the heights!

2Praise him, all his angels;
praise him, all his host!

3Praise him, sun and moon;
praise him, all you shining stars!

4Praise him, you highest heavens,
and you waters above the heavens!

5Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for he commanded and they were created.
6He established them forever and ever;
he fixed their bounds, which cannot be passed.

7Praise the Lord from the earth,
you sea monsters and all deeps,
8fire and hail, snow and frost,
stormy wind fulfilling his command!
9Mountains and all hills,
fruit trees and all cedars!
10Wild animals and all cattle,
creeping things and flying birds!
11Kings of the earth and all peoples,
princes and all rulers of the earth!
12Young men and women alike,
old and young together!

13Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for his name alone is exalted;
his glory is above earth and heaven.

14He has raised up a horn for his people,
praise for all his faithful,
for the people of Israel who are close to him.

Praise the Lord!

  • Light a candle to remember the light of Christ with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
  • As you inhale, think “Praise.”
  • As you exhale, think “God.”
  • Praise……….God.
  • Praise…………..God.
  • Praise………………..God.
  • Allow your breathing to be full, slow, and intentional.
  • Praise…………………….God.
  • Praise God for hope.
  • Praise God for peace.
  • Praise God for all of creation.
  • Praise God for your neighbor.
  • Praise God for you.
  • Let every breath praise God.
  • Let all thoughts and words from your lips praise God.
  • Let God fill every part of you with joy.
  • Feel the Christmas joy in your praise.
  • Rejoice.
  • How does God want you to praise God today?
  • What is God’s message for you?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, December 30, 2012, the First Sunday after Christmas (Year C)

1 Samuel 2:18-20, 26
Psalm 148
Colossians 3:12-17
Luke 2:41-52

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings The Rev. Lil Smith, M.Div., DASD

John 18:33-37 – “Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

John 18:33-37

33Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” 34Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” 35Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” 36Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” 37Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
  • Push back your shoulders as you breathe deeply, allowing your chest to expand fully and free you from any tension.
  • Continue to be opened by the breath.
  • Jesus came into this world to be Lord of those who belong to the truth.
  • How do you follow the truth?
  • What voice of Jesus do you hear?
  • What words are written on your heart?
  • What words rise to your lips?
  • How does Jesus want you to respond to the truth?
  • What is God’s message for you?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, November 25, 2012, Christ the King (Reign of Christ) Sunday, Year B

2 Samuel 23:1-7
Psalm 132:1-12 (13-18)
Revelation 1:4b-8
John 18:33-37

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings The Rev. Lil Smith, M.Div., DASD

Mark 10:2-16 – Whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it

Mark 10:2-16

2Some Pharisees came, and to test him they asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?” 3He answered them, “What did Moses command you?” 4They said, “Moses allowed a man to write a certificate of dismissal and to divorce her.” 5But Jesus said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart he wrote this commandment for you. 6But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ 7‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, 8and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. 9Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

10Then in the house the disciples asked him again about this matter. 11He said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her; 12and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.”

13People were bringing little children to him in order that he might touch them; and the disciples spoke sternly to them. 14But when Jesus saw this, he was indignant and said to them, “Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. 15Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.” 16And he took them up in his arms, laid his hands on them, and blessed them.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
  • Let go of any tension in your shoulders.  Be opened by the Breath.  Seek freedom.
  • Place your hands palms up in your lap.
  • Imagine holding a ball.
  • What does the ball look like? Is it large or small?  What color is the ball?
  • How do you desire to play with the ball?
  • Imagine playing with the ball.
  • What do you feel when you play with the ball?
  • Is there someone playing with you?  Or are you alone?
  • What are you playing?
  • Notice your surroundings.  Where are you?
  • Be open to Christ.  Where do you find Christ?
  • What playfulness do you encounter?
  • What is Christ’s message for you?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, October 7, 2012, the Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

Job 1:1, 2:1-10
Psalm 26:1-12
Hebrews 1:1-4, 2:5-12
Mark 10:2-16

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings The Rev. Lil Smith, M.Div., DASD

Hebrews 5:5-10 He learned obedience through what he suffered

HEBREWS 5:5-10

5So also Christ did not glorify himself in becoming a high priest, but was appointed by the one who said to him,
“You are my Son,
today I have begotten you”;
6as he says also in another place,
“You are a priest forever,
according to the order of Melchizedek.”

7In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to the one who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. 8Although he was a Son, he learned obedience through what he suffered; 9and having been made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him, 10having been designated by God a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying attention to the deep breath.
  • It is a new day.
  • How will you obey Christ today?
  • Search your heart to know what is written there.
  • What do you need to put aside to obey Christ?
  • What is God’s message to you?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, March 25, 2012, the Fifth Sunday in Lent Year B
Jeremiah 31:31-34
Psalm 51:1-12
Psalm 119:9-16
Hebrews 5:5-10
John 12:20-33

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings The Rev. Lil Smith, M.Div., DASD

The Prayer of Saint Patrick

St. Patrick of Ireland (fifth century)

The Prayer of Saint Patrick

I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through a belief in the Threeness,
Through confession of the Oneness 
Of the Creator of creation. 
I arise today 
Through the strength of Christ’s birth and His baptism, 
Through the strength of His crucifixion and His burial, 
Through the strength of His resurrection and His ascension,
Through the strength of His descent for the judgment of doom. 
I arise today
Through the strength of the love of cherubim,
In obedience of angels,
In service of archangels,
In the hope of resurrection to meet with reward,
In the prayers of patriarchs, 
In preachings of the apostles,
In faiths of confessors,
In innocence of virgins,
In deeds of righteous men.
I arise today
Through the strength of heaven; 
Light of the sun,
Splendor of fire,
Speed of lightning,
Swiftness of the wind,
Depth of the sea, 
Stability of the earth,
Firmness of the rock. 
I arise today
Through God’s strength to pilot me;
God’s might to uphold me, 
God’s wisdom to guide me, 
God’s eye to look before me, 
God’s ear to hear me, 
God’s word to speak for me, 
God’s hand to guard me, 
God’s way to lie before me, 
God’s shield to protect me, 
God’s hosts to save me 
From snares of the devil, 
From temptations of vices, 
From every one who desires me ill, 
Afar and anear, 
Alone or in a multitude.
I summon today all these powers between me and evil,
Against every cruel merciless power that opposes my body and soul, 
Against incantations of false prophets,
Against black laws of pagandom,
Against false laws of heretics,
Against craft of idolatry, 
Against spells of women and smiths and wizards,
Against every knowledge that corrupts man’s body and soul. 
Christ shield me today 
Against poison, against burning, 
Against drowning, against wounding,
So that reward may come to me in abundance. 
Christ with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me,
Christ in me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me, 
Christ on my right, Christ on my left, 
Christ when I lie down, Christ when I sit down, 
Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me, 
Christ in the mouth of every man who speaks of me, 
Christ in the eye that sees me, 
Christ in the ear that hears me. 
I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through a belief in the Threeness,
Through a confession of the Oneness
Of the Creator of creation.

AMEN

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying attention to the deep breath.
  • What word or phrase captures your focus in this prayer of St. Patrick?
  • Let this word or phrase become your focus, allowing God’s message for you to grow.
  • Let this message grow as Christ is with you.
  • Christ is before you.
  • Christ is behind you.
  • Let this message grow as Christ is in you.
  • Christ is beneath you.
  • Christ is above you.
  • Let this message grow as Christ is on your right.
  • Christ is on your left.
  • Christ is ever present.
  • See the message.
  • Hear the message.
  • Speak the message.
  • How will you share the message with and for Christ in the world?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, March 18, 2012, the Fourth Sunday in Lent Year B 
Numbers 21:4-9
Psalm 107:103, 17-22
Ephesians 2:1-10
John 3:14-21

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings The Rev. Lil Smith, M.Div., DASD