Whatever gifts I may have received from your generous hand,
Let me seek the good of others, to encourage and uplift.
Father, I do not know if I have the gift of encouragement,
But Barnabas seems to be a wonderful example for me to follow.
Let me consider how others hear the words I say,
And let me say the words that build others up.
Make me a positive spirit to see what others may become,
And paint for them a powerful picture of a shining future.
Above all, let me draw attention always to your love and power,
To inspire in others the hope of better things.
Beyond the trials of today, help me speak about eternity,
And Jesus’ coming, and living in heaven with you.
Remind us all of sin’s seductions and of Satan’s wiles,
The powers of the world and the destruction of the flesh.
And more, draw us to yourself into your finest gifts:
The Word, the church, and prayer, and life in the beloved Son.
O Lord, we are all Job, aren’t we?
The secret things belong to you.
Many things we could not understand, even if you told us.
You want us to learn to trust you.
Our strength is in our faith.
And our faith is so small!
Forgive us and help us in our lack.
We shall not curse or revile.
We believe, O Father, in your goodness.
Show us the future blessing.
Thank you, Father, for the new year,
For the old that brought us blessing,
For the friends that sharpened us,
For the family that surrounds us,
For work to give meaning,
For walking in your light,
For forgiveness for every sin,
For fellowship with the saints,
For opportunities of tomorrow,
For joy in the present,
For the lessons of the past,
For your plan before time began,
For hope of Jesus’ coming,
For strength in frequent suffering,
For power in the Spirit,
For knowledge to give us confidence,
For love that binds together,
Undying love forever.
Future unknown, present uncertain,
Past obscured by faulty memories—
Events mow down our hopes and dreams—
O Sovereign God, come bear our burden!
Father, help us to look ahead, in order to prepare for future opportunities, to be ready for the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Let us lay aside worries about tomorrow in order to take up the hope of your promises.
Let us forget ourselves, for our joy.
Let us focus on serving, for the blessing of others.
Let us follow the Lord Jesus, for your glory.