This Day (Regular Edition): A Wesleyan Way of Prayer [NOOK Book]

Overview

Dr. Laurence Stookey of Wesley Seminary has created this resource to serve as a daily prayer book for the home and personal use.  The book is also designed for use by individuals participating in a Wesleyan class meeting in conjunction with the Sunday morning experience or a week-day meeting. The unique aspect of this program lies in its incorporation of the practice of daily prayer and accountability within the Sunday morning adult education program . ...
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This Day (Regular Edition): A Wesleyan Way of Prayer

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Overview

Dr. Laurence Stookey of Wesley Seminary has created this resource to serve as a daily prayer book for the home and personal use.  The book is also designed for use by individuals participating in a Wesleyan class meeting in conjunction with the Sunday morning experience or a week-day meeting. The unique aspect of this program lies in its incorporation of the practice of daily prayer and accountability within the Sunday morning adult education program . In addition to activities conducted on Sunday, class members will participate in ordered daily prayer within the Wesleyan spirit. This Day contains  thirty-one forms of prayer, one  for each day of the month drawn from: John Wesley's 1738 Forms of Prayer for Every Day of the Week, The 1784 Order for Morning Prayer, The United Methodist Book of Worship,  The Book of Common Prayer, The IONA and Taize Communities, the Benedictine tradition, the Eastern Orthodox tradition, and contemporary sources. This resource is not UM specific and is based on the revised common lectionary and the daily lectionary of the Book of Common Prayer. 

Deluxe edition,  is a great gift idea!


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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781426734076
  • Publisher: Abingdon Press
  • Publication date: 10/1/2010
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 431,490
  • File size: 4 MB

Meet the Author

Laurence Hull Stookey is Professor Emeritus of Preaching and Worship, Wesley Theological Seminary, Washington,D.C., and Pastor of Asbury United Methodist Church in Allen, MD. He has authored the following books for Abingdon: Eucharist: Christ's Feast With the Church; Calendar: Christ's Time for the Church; Baptism: Christ's Act in the Church; Let the Whole Church Say Amen; and This Day: A Wesleyan Way of Prayer.

also try lstookey@wesleyseminary.edu
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Read an Excerpt

This Day

A Wesleyan Way of Prayer


By Laurence Hull Stookey

Abingdon Press

Copyright © 2004 Abingdon Press
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-4267-3407-6



CHAPTER 1

The Daily Order


Day 1


New things I now declare; before they spring forth, I tell you of them. Isaiah 42:9


I saw a new heaven and a new earth ..., the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. Revelation 21:1-2


On the first day of each month we look ahead, recalling the many opportunities God gives us to start afresh and to begin new ventures in discipleship.


Jesus told his followers to take up the cross daily. Contrary to common belief, the cross is not some burden or challenge in life that we cannot escape and simply must endure (such as chronic disease or being unable to find work). Rather the cross is something we can evade, but we nevertheless take it up willingly, even amid misgivings. In Gethsemane Jesus reluctantly yet willingly accepted the cross that was presented to him; thus he defined his own instruction and set the pattern for discipleship.

As a new month begins, ask yourself:

Am I willing, indeed eager, to see God at work in new ways in my life?

Will I work to identify God's newness, particularly when it does not seem evident to me?

Am I determined to trust in God's ways, even if I am apprehensive about what they hold in store?

Will I seek in all things to give thanks to God?


OPENING PRAYER

In the beginning, O Lord,
you created heaven and earth;
you have promised to bring forth
a new heaven and a new earth
Grant therefore to all of your people
a firm conviction of your goodness and
a zeal to participate fully in whatever you intend for us,
that we may be effective witnesses to the world
in both word and deed,
a people who steadfastly proclaim your love;
through Christ our risen Savior. Amen.


CENTERING (See pages 19-21 for suggested ways of centering.)


PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION

O Illuminator of all that exists:
As you called forth light on the first day of creation,
now by the power of your same Spirit
sweep across our emptiness and darkness,
that in reading and pondering Scripture
we may more clearly see your way
and how to walk in it boldly;
through Jesus Christ, who guides us. Amen.


PSALM 1 (Year One) 8 (Year Two)

SCRIPTURE READINGS FOR THE DAY (See pages 179-215)

CONTEMPLATION (See page 23)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE DAY OF THE WEEK (See pages 103-6)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE TIME OF THE YEAR (See pages 107-34)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE OCCASION (See pages 135-58)

THE PRAYER OF THE WHOLE CHURCH (See pages 156-57)

CLOSING (See page 25)


Day 2


I am the LORD, that is my name; my glory I give to no other, nor my praise to idols. Isaiah 42:8


I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end. Revelation 22:13


Consistent and conscientious discipleship springs from a sure knowledge that we are loved by God and that all of our devotion is a response to divine covenant love for us. Therefore, on days 2, 3, and 4 of each month we reflect on the nature of this gracious God.


The world is filled with competing deities. Even if many of the forces that allure us are not identified as gods, let alone recognized as false idols, still that is the situation. We do well, therefore, to re-examine regularly our understanding of God.

Consider how you know this God:

What passages of Scripture are for you the most powerful testimonies to the nature and work of God?

What long-standing convictions do Christians transmit to each new generation, handing on the faith of what the Nicene Creed calls "one holy catholic and apostolic church"?

What experiences can you identify in which God has been a crucial personal presence in your own life?

How does your understanding of God distinguish faith from superstition, deep discipleship from superficial feeling, and long-term promises to God from passing fancies about God?


OPENING PRAYER

You alone are God. You alone are holy.
You have made yourself known in the creation
we see all about us.
You have made yourself known in faithful covenants:
in the journeys of Abraham and Sarah,
in the great escape from slavery in Egypt,
in the experiences of judges, monarchs, and mighty
prophets.
But above all, you have revealed yourself
in Jesus, your anointed One,
and continually you make known your presence
in the power of the Holy Spirit,
your sacred breath within us,
your mighty wind around us.
You alone are God. You alone are holy. Amen.


CENTERING (See pages 19-21 for suggested ways of centering.)


PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION

Mighty God, our strength and hope:
you have not left us on our own,
struggling to find you without direction.
Rather, you have come among us and,
in the Scriptures of the synagogue and the church,
you have given us the reliable record of your presence.
Open anew the meaning of what we read,
that by the gifts of your Holy Spirit
we may be strengthened and sent forth
to do your work in the world;
through Christ who is the Living Word. Amen.


PSALM 16 (Year One)

33:1-9 (Year Two)

SCRIPTURE READINGS FOR THE DAY (See pages 179-215)

CONTEMPLATION (See page 23)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE DAY OF THE WEEK (See pages 103-6)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE TIME OF THE YEAR (See pages 107-34)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE OCCASION (See pages 135-58)

THE PRAYER OF THE WHOLE CHURCH (See pages 156-57)

CLOSING (See page 25)


Day 3


The Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father's only son, full of grace and truth. John 1:14

[Christ] is the image of the invisible God In him all things hold together. He is the head of the body, the church. Colossians 1:15,17b-18a


In Jesus we find the clearest and most complete glimpse of the Eternal God that we mortals are capable of experiencing.


The church has always insisted that Jesus is far more than simply another good teacher of morals who ran afoul of conventional ideas and beliefs. Jesus is nothing less than God among us in human form. In Jesus we see the extent to which God will go to proclaim reconciliation and to demonstrate a drastic reordering of life. This is what it means to say that Christ died and arose for us.

Consider your response to God's work in Christ Jesus:
Suppose Jesus had never lived. How would your ways of
understanding God be different?
How would your motivation for doing good be different?
To what extent does gratitude for the gift of Christ
in our midst fill you with joy?


OPENING PRAYER

Jesus, Savior and Sovereign:
For our sakes, you dwelt among us in humility and patience,
that we might know more fully on earth
the ways of heaven.
Willingly you allowed yourself to be given over to death
at our hands.
Triumphantly you conquered death for us
and made us your friends
rather than the slaves of sin.
Drive from our hearts
all ingratitude,
all apathy or carelessness in following you.
Into our hearts, thus emptied,
pour the fullness of your faithful witness,
that the world may behold in us
some small sign of that eternal love,
which you have and hold within the Trinity
and share most graciously with all who seek you. Amen.


CENTERING (See pages 19-21 for suggested ways of centering.)


PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION

Jesus, the world's true light:
in your ministry on earth you read from the Scriptures in the synagogue
and taught the people the meaning of what they heard.
After your resurrection you opened the Scriptures
to those who walked on the Emmaus road with you.
So now, enlighten us also,
and give us grace to do your will
by the power of your Holy Spirit. Amen.


PSALM 23 (Year One) 89:1-8 (Year Two)

SCRIPTURE READINGS FOR THE DAY (See pages 179-215)

CONTEMPLATION (See page 23)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE TIME OF THE YEAR (See pages 107-34)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE OCCASION (See pages 135-58)

THE PRAYER OF THE WHOLE CHURCH (See pages 156-57)

CLOSING (See page 25)


Day 4

When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who comes from the Father, he will testify on my behalf. John 15:26


The Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. Romans 8:26


The Holy Spirit is present and active among us.


The ascension of Jesus was not a loss, as if what he had done among us ceased. Rather it was a gain. For in the man from Nazareth, the power of God was made known for a few short years, across a limited territory. But now, by the work of the Holy Spirit, that power is let loose across the whole world for all time.

Someone has complained that for most Christians the Holy Spirit is simply "a kind of vague blur." What is your understanding of the Spirit? What works of the Spirit can you identify in your own life and in the lives of Christians across the centuries and around the world, or in your own community?


OPENING PRAYER

Come, Holy Spirit.
You are the sacred breath, through which we have life.
You are the blessed wind, one divine driving force
by which we are refreshed and invigorated.
As the mists of morning that obscure the road ahead
are dissipated before the sun's brightness,
so clear away our confusion
and dispel all false notions and evil intentions.
Then empower me, and all who seek your strength,
to do your will.
Blessed are you, together with the Father and the Son,
one God, in every age and beyond all time. Amen.


CENTERING (See pages 19-21 for suggested ways of centering.)


PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION

Spirit of God, unending and unfettered,
by your divine assistance the Scriptures came into being;
by your divine assistance their message is revealed to us.
Therefore interpret the meaning of what we read,
that in our day and place
we may be refreshed and renewed
in witness and in service to the world,
into which you breathed life at creation itself. Amen.


PSALM 103:1-8 (Year One) 89:11-17 (Year Two)

SCRIPTURE READINGS FOR THE DAY (See pages 179-215)

CONTEMPLATION (See page 23)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE DAY OF THE WEEK (See pages 103-6)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE TIME OF THE YEAR (See pages 107-34)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE OCCASION (See pages 135-58)

THE PRAYER OF THE WHOLE CHURCH (See pages 156-57)

CLOSING (See page 25)


Day 5

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God— what is good and, acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2


Be perfect ... as your heavenly Father is perfect. Matthew 5:48


For the past three days, our focus has been on the loving God to whom we belong. Now we consider how our love for God moves us toward transformed lives—a process sometimes referred to as "sanctification" or "going on to perfection."


To be told by Jesus that we are to be perfect as God is perfect is a terrifying thing, a command so intimidating that we snatch it from our memories—unless we think of it in terms of capacity, not identical quantity. A pint jar can be as perfectly full as a ten gallon jar, even though the amount each holds is vastly different. We are not expected to have the infinite capacity for goodness and grace that characterizes God. But we can be and are expected to live up to the human capacity God has put within each of us (in varying measures), just as the Almighty lives up to the full capacity of deity.

Further, the process of fulfilling the capacity given to us involves divine assistance. Sanctification (as this process is often called) is not a good work we do for God but a good work God does within us when we open ourselves to the One who made us, who knows our capacity, and who brings us to fulfillment when we allow it. Before this Holy One we present ourselves not as burnt offerings on an altar, but as living sacrifices in the world (Romans 12:1).


OPENING PRAYER

Accept me, O Lord, as a sacrifice,
alive and eager to be used as you see fit.
That I am all too conformed to this world,
I readily confess with shame.
Transform me by your mighty power.
Renew my mind,
that I may discern your will,
that I may both know and do
what is good, acceptable, and perfect.
This I pray, together with the whole church;
through that One who was
the supremely perfect sacrifice,
Jesus, Savior of the world. Amen.


CENTERING (See pages 19-21 for suggested ways of centering.)


PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION

From distraction in the midst of the sacred reading,
save me, good Lord.
From presuming that I already know
the meaning of the Scriptures
that are about to be considered, spare me.
Pry open both my mind and my heart
and in the place of their pretense and coldness
put the fullness and fire of your life-giving Spirit;
for the sake of Jesus Christ. Amen.


PSALM 17:1-8 (Year One) 18:7-14 (Year Two)

SCRIPTURE READINGS FOR THE DAY (See pages 179-215)

CONTEMPLATION (See page 23)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE DAY OF THE WEEK (See pages 103-6)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE TIME OF THE YEAR (See pages 107-34)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE OCCASION (See pages 135-58)

THE PRAYER OF THE WHOLE CHURCH (See pages 156-57)

CLOSING (See page 25)


Day 6

What does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8 NIV


Again today, we consider how our response of love for a loving God shapes our lives and propels us forward in faithful action.


The most famous words from Micah at first seem to read like a list of three things: (1) Act justly. (2) Love mercy. (3) Walk humbly with God. But it is not so.

Justice and mercy cannot be separated, at least as God defines them. Justice without mercy is harshly legalistic, even cruel. Mercy without justice sacrifices fairness on the altar of sentimentality. To the question "Is God just or is God kind?" the only proper answer is "Both." Furthermore, humility before God consists of imitating this justice- mercy of God. Humility is our response to divine love toward us and our witness to the power God's love can release in others.

Therefore what Micah sets forth is one thing, not three. We would probably be happier with three; then we could keep our little lists and check off each item in turn. But it cannot be. Hence we are constrained to ask:

If I seek justice for myself, can I understand when others
extend mercy to those who have hurt me?
Can I myself show mercy?
If I am merciful to others, can I understand
why those who have been hurt
think I have no concern for fairness?
Since God alone knows in what proportions
justice and mercy must be mixed in any given instance,
can I learn that walking humbly with God not only means
that I seek to emulate God?
It also means I cannot fully do so,
since God alone is the righteous Judge.
How do I, with my noble aspirations, strive to emulate God
and yet confront my limitations
of understanding and action?
How does all of this relate to Christian teaching
about forgiving others in love,
as a loving God has forgiven us?


OPENING PRAYER

Grant to me and to all of your people, O God,
the gift of walking humbly with you.
Give us the wisdom to know how best
to temper justice with mercy,
to buttress mercy with justice,
so that your will may be done on earth as in heaven;
through Christ our Judge and Advocate. Amen.


CENTERING (See pages 19-21 for suggested ways of centering.)


PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION

Great God, the Eternal:

By the same Holy Spirit who inspired
the writing of the Scriptures,
inspire also their reading in this hour,
that all who attentively regard these words
may know the truth and by it be set free;
through Christ who is himself
the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Amen.


PSALM 24 (Year One) 82 (Year Two)

SCRIPTURE READINGS FOR THE DAY (See pages 179-215)

CONTEMPLATION (See page 23)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE DAY OF THE WEEK (See pages 103-6)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE TIME OF THE YEAR (See pages 107-34)

ACTS APPROPRIATE TO THE OCCASION (See pages 135-58)


(Continues...)

Excerpted from This Day by Laurence Hull Stookey. Copyright © 2004 Abingdon Press. Excerpted by permission of Abingdon Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

Contents

Preface,
Introduction,
I. The Daily Order,
II. Acts Appropriate to the Day of the Week,
III. Acts Appropriate to the Time of the Year,
IV. Acts Appropriate to the Occasion,
V. Personal Prayer Surrounding the Congregational Service,
VI. Use of the Psalms in Times of Trouble and Terror,
VII. Teaching Children to Pray,
VIII. Lectionary,

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