Day 288 | Friday, 1 January 2021
– 116 new cases in the county yesterday
An Invocation for New Year's Day
“We come gratefully, our Father, to praise you for the new year and the possibilities you have planned for us. May we enter it with our hearts, minds and spirits in communion with you. And, dear Lord, may we always be found in your will, for surely, there is no better place to be. Amen.”
A Prayer for a New Year
“We are tenants of this earth, Lord, blessed souls to whom you've given a generous lease of life. The rent? You've asked for none - except that we have faith and live accordingly. We dedicate this year to you, Lord, with a promise to be open to you in spirit, mind and body. This year we'll try to keep the bodies that house our spirits, as you would have us keep them - structure firm, chambers clean, windows shining ... Shining from inside with such a light that passersby will stop to ask, "Who lives here?" or "Who owns this lovely place?" And I shall tell them with a humble nod, "I'm just a tenant here; the Owner, who deserves your praise, is God."
Prayers for a New Year
“O Renewer of life, we celebrate new life throughout the Christian year – at Advent, at Easter, at baptism. Yet the world joins us when the calendar moves forward, and we are thankful for new beginnings for the world. Bless all that has gone behind us and all that will go before us - that we might be a blessing in your plan for the future. May our true resolution be that of more faithful prayer, quieter listening and a desire to do your will. Lift our hearts in hope and expectation, we pray. In the name of the Christ. Amen.”
“O Lord now let this past year depart in its own peace. Let it become a part of the centuries and let us give thanks that we were privileged to live in it, through it and by it. As we turn the page on our calendars and remember to add a new date to our checks and letters, move with us, O God. Stay close by. Let us not get confused about whose is whose and what is what. Let us remember you as the source of our years and our days.
Help us understand any guilt we feel. Help us see any regrets we bring to this new time. Help us repent for that which we've done wrong, make what amends we can and go forward, with you. Amen.”
“Eternal God, you are the sovereign Lord of all our beginnings and all our endings. Today you place in our hands an entire year, like a precious book of fine new pages ready for us to create the story of 2021. Last year’s tattered pages are already bound between the covers of memory. Help us put the year on the shelf gracefully, without dwelling on either its successes or its setbacks.
“Prepare us to welcome without fear the new year prepared for us. Give us courage to face the unknown challenges ahead. Help us learn from the mistakes we have made in the past. Help us forgive ourselves, that we may go on to write new chapters with confidence.
“Strengthen us in every good and worthy resolve, shaping our conduct more and more in the image of your compassion and integrity. Give us the wisdom we need to fulfill our callings in our places of employment, our schools, our communities and our homes. If we are presented with new opportunities, lead us to make choices based on the values we learn from you, rather than on the misshapen truths of the marketplace. If we seem to have no choices at all, protect us from desperation, and help us hold still and listen to your voice.
“Bless those with whom we share our lives and homes, that together we may grow in love and faithfulness. Keep us secure in your peace. For Jesus’ sake. Amen.”
A New Year Blessing: “May there always be stars to guide us and a smooth road for us to travel. May we know a thousand blessings each day. May God give us hope each morning and peace at each evening’s rest. May God walk beside us now and always.”
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Rev. Douglas Knopp, Pastor Emeritus