A Prayer for Christian Fathers

Heavenly Father,
you entrusted your Son Jesus,
the child of Mary,
to the care of Joseph, an earthly father.
Bless all fathers
as they care for their families.
Give them strength and wisdom,
tenderness and patience;
support them in the work they have to do,
protecting those who look to them,
as we look to you for love and salvation,
through Jesus Christ our rock and defender.

Source: Unknown

Source of this version: https://www.xavier.edu/jesuitresource/online-resources/Fathers-Day-Prayers.cfm

The painting by Elisabetta Sirani (Bologna 1638-1665) St Joseph with the Infant Jesus c. 1662 was chosen simply to be a depiction of a father with a child.

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Light in Darkness

O Lord,
with me there is always doubt.
With you there never is.
The darkness was long,
too long,
and it all came from within me–
from my doubts and fears,
from me, looking inward,
seeking self.
Your light was there,
guiding and correcting,
and pointing me to your Son,
his goodness,
holiness,
and pure light.
Please,
shine in my heart,
with your most precious Light.
Send your holy Spirit
to turn on the light
when I hear
even the shortest
promises in your Word–
even when I hear
what I’ve heard
so many times before,
because that does not
make it any less precious,
but more precious.
Keep shining
and enlightening.
Restore to me the joy!
Amen.

Source: Anonymous, 21st Century

After a Fire

Gracious Father,
you give your angels charge over your children
to keep them in all their ways
and protect them from danger.
Give healing and recovery
to those who were injured
or suffered losses in yesterday’s fire.
Comfort those who mourn.
Keep us and our homes from all danger.
Continue to protect and support
the fire and rescue workers
who help and protect us.
You alone, O Lord, give all deliverance and protection.

Source: Paul C. Stratman, April 8, 2018

The fire was in an apartment building only a few blocks from our church.

http://www.wiscnews.com/bdc/news/local/firefighters-working-to-account-for-all-residents-in-beaver-dam/article_4369fcdc-d610-5f1b-acc2-7f06cb5dc75b.html

A Canticle of Christ (1)

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Christ Jesus,
the true Word,
the God of eternity,
born of a virgin,
a tender shoot from the stump of Jesse,
the blessed Lamb,
by him souls were set free,
through his blood all were redeemed,
the earth rejoiced because the enemy departed,
death of death,
hell’s destruction,
you gave freedom to your new creation
that rejoices to call you Master.
Jesus, Lamb of God,
you forgive the sins of the world.
We call on your holy name.

Source: Greek Papyrus Fragment, Cairo Museum, Fourth Century

Source of this version: The New Archaeological Discoveries and their Bearing upon the New Testament by Camdem McCormick Cobern, Funk & Wagnalls Company, 1918, p. 292

Text gaps freely reconstructed by Paul C. Stratman.

“Christ Jesus, the true Word, the God of eternity” is a reference to John 1:1

“born of a virgin” is a reference to Isaiah 7:14 and Luke 1:34

“a tender shoot” is a reference to Isaiah 53:2

“Stump of Jesse” is a reference to Isaiah 11:1

“through his blood” is a reference to 1 Peter 1:19

“death of death, hell’s destruction” on p. 293 of The New Archaeological Discoveries… a similar prayer has the phrase, “the one that has abolished death and the grave (Hades).” The phrase “death of death…” is from the hymn “Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah” by William Williams.

“new creation” is a reference to 2 Corinthians 5:17

“Lamb of God” is a reference to John 1:29

Text as it reads in The New Archaeological Discoveries and their Bearing upon the New Testament  without gaps reconstructed:

Christ…
the true Word,
the God of eternity

the blessed Lamb,
by him souls were set free
through his blood …
the earth rejoiced because the enemy departed

You gave freedom to the creation
that asked for a Master.
Jesus, you …
forgive sins …
we call on your holy name.

Creative Commons License
“A Canticle of Christ” from a Greek Papyrus Fragment as reconstructed by Paul C. Stratman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Please contact for any commercial usage.

An Ash Wednesday Prayer

ash_crossLord God, heavenly Father,
as the result of his rebellion,
you told father Adam,
“You are dust, and to dust you shall return.”
We have followed Adam in his rebellion,
and have earned the same reward.
Lift us up from this dust of death
by the rising of your Son Jesus Christ.
Restore us to life with you
by forgiveness through his blood.
Empower us to walk with him in newness of life,
and in the obedience that leads to righteousness.
Finally, on the Last Day,
raise us from the dust of death
to live in the joy of your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand;
through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one true God, now and forever.
Amen.

Source: Paul C. Stratman © 2017

Parts are written in imitation of the style of the Collects of Veit Dietrich.

“You are dust, …” is a reference to Genesis 3:19

“…the same reward” is a reference to Romans 6:23

“Lift us up from this dust of death… ” is a reference to Psalm 22:15 and Romans 6:4

“Restore us to life…” is a reference to Colossians 2:13

“…forgiveness through his blood” is a reference to Romans 5:9

“Empower us to walk  … ” is a reference to Romans 6:4

“and in the obedience of righteousness” is a reference to Romans 6:16

“Finally, on the Last Day, raise us…” is a reference to Daniel 12:2 and John 6:40

“joy of your presence, eternal pleasures” is a reference to Psalm 16:11

Ash Wednesday cross graphic from http://churchgraphics.blogspot.com/p/clip-art.html

New Prayer Book from Northwestern Publishing House, ‘There’s a Prayer for That’

A new book of prayers is available from Northwestern Publishing House. There’s a Prayer for That. It contains 494 prayers, with many of them newly composed for this book. Two of them, 18. Presentation of the Augsburg Confession, and 84. Thanks for Freedom from Satan’s Power are by Pastor Paul Stratman, the editor of A Collection of Prayers.

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The book can be ordered through Amazon.com at the following link:  https://smile.amazon.com/Theres-Prayer-That-Various/dp/081002893X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1516888635&sr=8-1&keywords=There%27s+a+prayer+for+that

Description from Amazon:

The Word encourages you to pray in every circumstance. Whether life leads you to bring thanks, praise, or troubles before God, he will listen.

There’s a Prayer for That guides you in this continual conversation with God. This collection contains over 450 prayers, including some from Meditations Daily Devotional, for the people and situations in your life. Whether you are thinking about your family and friends, your future, or your faith, this book will guide you in prayer.

God may not always respond in obvious or expected ways. Yet, the messages from Scripture included in There’s a Prayer for That assure you that his answers are lovingly given for the good of your soul.

No matter what tomorrow brings, there’s a prayer for that, and there’s a loving Father who wants you to talk to him.

Advent 4

O Lord,
you have established your house and your kingdom forever
through your Son Jesus Christ.
Reveal your saving purpose and your holy love to us,
and move our hearts to faith and obedience;
through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.

Source: Paul C. Stratman, newly composed, © 2017