Thanksgiving: With Thanksgiving Let Your Requests Be Known- Philippians 4:4-9

Philippians 4:4-9

4Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. 6Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

8Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. 9Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silence bringing your attention to the Breath.
  • I rejoice when I see pennies on the ground.
  • I pick them up, and I rejoice.
  • In all things, rejoice.
  • For a moment, sometimes more, I lean into my blessings and forget my struggles.
  • Rejoice.
  • When I see three pennies in one place, I pay particular attention.  The wholeness of God is trying to get my attention.  Where in my life do I need to be turned more fully to God?
  • What invites you to rejoice?
  • What invites you to pay particular attention to lean into your blessings and let go of your struggles.
  • How do you desire to look for these opportunities to rejoice today?
  • What is your message from God?
  • 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 Thursday, November 28, 2019, Thanksgiving Day (Year C)

Deuteronomy 26:1-11
Psalm 100:1-5
Philippians 4:4-9
John 6:25-35

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings.  (c) 2019 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD

Rev. Dr. Lil Smith is a trained spiritual director, supervisor, and co-founder of Retreat House Spirituality Center in Richardson, TX.  Upon completion of her spiritual direction certification, Lil began Praying the Lectionary in 2011 as a spiritual practice for her morning prayer time.  Instead of reading about someone else’s experience of God, it was important for her to create a prayer practice that would encourage felt sense experience of the Holy emerging from within.  It dawned on her others might enjoy the practice, as well.  So she began to share them on this site.

As you experience the practice of Praying the Lectionary, adopt a loving, caring, and compassionate stance.  If the end of your prayer and meditation time is not pointing to love and hope, there is more work to do.  Keep wrestling.  God is faithful to your journey.  Love and hope will emerge.  Be gentle with yourself and befriend any judgment that arises in you.

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 14:1-15:47 You will not always have me…

MARK 14:1-15:47

14:1It was two days before the Passover and the festival of Unleavened Bread. The chief priests and the scribes were looking for a way to arrest Jesus by stealth and kill him; 2for they said, “Not during the festival, or there may be a riot among the people.”

3While he was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he sat at the table, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very costly ointment of nard, and she broke open the jar and poured the ointment on his head.4But some were there who said to one another in anger, “Why was the ointment wasted in this way? 5For this ointment could have been sold for more than three hundred denarii, and the money given to the poor.” And they scolded her. 6But Jesus said, “Let her alone; why do you trouble her? She has performed a good service for me.7For you always have the poor with you, and you can show kindness to them whenever you wish; but you will not always have me. 8She has done what she could; she has anointed my body beforehand for its burial. 9Truly I tell you, wherever the good news is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in remembrance of her.”

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying attention to the deep breath.
  • Remember a time you did something extravagant for Christ.
  • Remember hearing the call.
  • Remember making the plans.  What details stand out as you recall?
  • Remember the joy that was created.
  • Remember the light that burst forth in glory.
  • Was there a voice that scolded you?
  • How did that make you feel?
  • How did Christ comfort you?
  • What is told in remembrance of your act of glorifying Christ?
  • How is the good news still proclaimed?
  • 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, 2018, Palm Sunday (Passion Sunday) (Year B)

Liturgy of the Palms:
Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29
Mark 11:1-11
Liturgy of the Passion:
Isaiah 50:4-9a
Psalm 31:9-16
Philippians 2:5-11
Mark 14:1-15:47

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

Judges 4:1-7 The Last Judgment

The Last Judgment, by Fra Angelico

JUDGES 4:1-7

1The Israelites again did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, after Ehud died. 2So the LORD sold them into the hand of King Jabin of Canaan, who reigned in Hazor; the commander of his army was Sisera, who lived in Harosheth-ha-goiim. 3Then the Israelites cried out to the LORD for help; for he had nine hundred chariots of iron, and had oppressed the Israelites cruelly twenty years.

4At that time Deborah, a prophetess, wife of Lappidoth, was judging Israel. 5She used to sit under the palm of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim; and the Israelites came up to her for judgment. 6She sent and summoned Barak son of Abinoam from Kedesh in Naphtali, and said to him, “The LORD, the God of Israel, commands you, ‘Go, take position at Mount Tabor, bringing ten thousand from the tribe of Naphtali and the tribe of Zebulun. 7I will draw out Sisera, the general of Jabin’s army, to meet you by the Wadi Kishon with his chariots and his troops; and I will give him into your hand.’”

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation, paying attention to the breath.
  • What judgment has hold of you?
  • From whom is this judgment coming?
  • How is this judgment a reflection of God’s people?
  • What forgiveness do you need to give?
  • What forgiveness do you need to receive?
  • As God’s people, what forgiveness to we need to give?
  • As God’s people, what forgiveness do we need to receive?
  • Is there a message for you from God?
  • Is there a call to action?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer to consider the judgment that takes hold of us, the forgiveness we give and receive, and any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, November 19, 2017, the Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A)

Judges 4:1-7
Psalm 123:1-4
1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
Matthew 25:14-30

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