Our Loving Father in Heaven,
Before we awoke this morning, you were already blessing us. By your help we slept safely through the night, and because of your grace we can rise this day. We can open our eyes, stand, walk, talk, laugh, cry, hurt, and heal because you have given us the gifts of life, health, and a passionate, meaningful existence in this world. Our food, clothing, and shelter all come from things you yourself created and provided. We experience the joy of having them because of the talents and opportunities you've given us to prosper. When we look at our family and our friends, we know that these are all your children whom you've decided to share with us for a while. Help us to value the people around us who enrich our life and make it worth living. In fact, apart from your goodness and your generosity, we would have nothing and no one. All good things come from you.
Thank you, Lord, for the joyful memories, the victories, and the successes, because these remind us that you hear our prayers and that you love us. Thank you also for the painful experiences, the failures, and the defeats, because they remind us how much we need you. Help us to make the most of this busy season, with the opportunities it provides to create memories with the people we love. Be especially near to our friends whose hearts are heavy right now because of those no longer among us, or those who may soon be departing.
Lord, please work on the hearts of those who make themselves your enemies. Give them what experience they need to awaken them and to help them come to their senses. Work through us so that by the power of the Gospel, our enemies can become your friends. Reclaim and redeem them for more noble purposes. When a lost child wants to return to you, may they find us to be a welcoming family and a warm place to call home.
We see, Lord, but please give us better vision. We love, Lord, but please give us deeper compassion. We speak, Lord, but please give us greater courage. We believe, Lord, but please help our unbelief. May our own joy be wrapped up in the things that bring your heart joy.
We approach you, Father, with the help of the Spirit, and through the power of Jesus' name. Amen.