Ancient of Days, who accompanies us on our inward journey, We draw near to you in this silence, waiting for your love to carve away our excess, so that we may find what is truly valuable. Your relentless grace guides us into our interior shadows, softening away our hardness with your compassionate Presence. Make this Ash Wednesday be the doorway to a season in which our inconsistencies are revealed. Unbind us from any fear, envy, pride, sloth or perfectionism. Release us into your creative light so we can become more fully yours. Remind us that this path is not a solitary one but for the whole community. Amen.
Creator of Beauty, who colors outside the lines to a new season, As this season changes the earth, new light comes in through open spaces and dark nights blanket us in. Teach us to accept, adapt and change in response to both. Reveal new patterns and designs in our relationship with you until the colors of your mercy extend hopeful layers to all people. And together, we breathe thanksgiving. Amen.
Maker of the heavens and earth, who arrives in flickers of translucence, Fill us with your breath in this moment and set our intention on finding your Presence in this day. Open us to all the ways you work to restore our bond with your creation. We so often fear spaciousness, we are afraid of letting go, we cling to the towers of our own making. Transform us with your delicate touches of grace where we might acknowledge the fullness of your Presence. Remind us to remain watchful for the reverent flow of life where Love emerges inviting us to enter in. Amen.
God of mercy, whose creation is ever before us Even the falling leaves whisper their consent. Even the fading flowers express their beauty as they wither. Help us to recognize the visible strength found in delicateness. Slow our pace, remind us to pause as living things return to the earth. Increase our trust in the rhythm of the seasons that follow. You breathe your goodness and gladness in us, make us satisfied to breathe in you this day. Amen.
2 Cor 4:16-18
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
Mother of the Earth and Stars, whose arms encompass infinity,
We awaken and stretch and breathe in the freshness of a new day. Open our minds to see that we rise up from this earth just as any other living thing. Our connections weave us into the fabric of all creation. This kind of belonging gives us both freedom and responsibility. Help us take one moment of this day to notice how we are related to all that we overlook. Fill us with the wonder of acknowledging how Love creates all that is. Amen.
Maker of all Beauty,
whose masterpiece is ever before us, May your power slow us down this day to see the unseen, and to hear the unspoken. Gently guide us through your wisdom to stand and support another, as simply as the flowers of the earth. As we watch creation renewing itself in this season so may our hearts burst forth with gratitude for your loving Presence. Amen.
Luminous Presence, whose face reflects light in all directions,
We wake and pause to take in the mysterious brightness of your creation.
In this new day, with its unseen possibilities, order our lives. Provoke your mercy and peace to bring our weary souls relief from the error of our ways. Shine your love amongst us, stirring comfort into the hearts of all who need healing and hope so that your image can be established, throughout our world. Amen.
Life-giving Presence, whose creation has redeeming power,
Awaken us to the wonder of this day, open to the beauty contained in it. Enliven us by the breath of your Spirit hovering overhead, steady us with the earth beneath our feet. Transform us into cheering and adoring crowds who want to get a little closer, to see more of your celebrity. Our one desire is to enter into your inner circle, perhaps even finding a place at your feet. Then, after having audience with our Creator, make us enthusiastic participants for the restoration of the world. Amen.
Light of Love who shines upon the earth and enters every hopeful thought,
A new day dawns, and we pause to take in her lovely fresh scent, to breathe in the mystery of all that greets us. Remind us that even in our challenges, there are no shadows without light. Create in us an inner stillness to bring into this days activity. Increase our confidence that the loving Light holding us, radiates beyond to hold and carry others. Let the shadows we cast, be shadows filled with your Love. Amen.
Merciful One, who hears the cries of our suffering creation,
There are no words, only deep sighs. (deep sigh) We breathe in your loving power that overcomes all fear. (deep sigh) We breathe in your Self-giving nature that transforms all disorder. (deep sigh) We breathe in your redeeming Presence now. Soak our hearts and minds with all that establishes sincere communities ready to seriously look to the needs of others rather than striving after our own security and desire. Remind us once again that we live under your cross, not above it. Amen.