Prayer for the Morning
Be strong, let your heart take courage,/
all who hope in the Lord. (Ps 31:25)
Glory to the Father, and to the Son,
and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia!
Jerusalem the golden,
With milk and honey blest,
Beneath thy contemplation
Sink heart and voice oppressed.
I know not, O I know not,
What joys await us there,
What radiancy of glory,
What bliss beyond compare.
For thee, O dear, dear country,
Mine eyes their vigils keep;
For very love, beholding,
Thy happy name, they weep:
The mention of thy glory
Is unction to the breast,
And medicine in sickness,
And love, and life, and rest.
Jerusalem the glorious!
Glory of the elect!
O dear and future vision
That eager hearts expect!
E’en now by faith I see thee,
E’en here thy walls discern;
To thee my thoughts are kindled,
And strive, and pant, and yearn.
Strive, man, to win that glory;
Toil, man, to gain that light;
Send hope before to grasp it,
Till hope be lost in sight.
Exult, O dust and ashes,
The Lord shall be thy part:
His only, his forever
Thou shalt be, and thou art.
It is I this day/ who have made you a fortified city. (Jer 1:18)
In ancient times, a walled city was a people’s protection against marauders of all sorts. The heavenly city, the new Jerusalem, will protect all God’s people from the most dreaded of marauders, evil and death. As we await that promised dwelling place, we know that we are encircled always by God’s saving love in Jesus Christ.
How great is the goodness, Lord,
that you keep for those who fear you,
that you show to those who trust you
in the sight of men.
You hide them in the shelter of your presence
from the plotting of men:
you keep them safe within your tent
from disputing tongues.
Blessed be the Lord who has shown me
the wonders of his love
in a fortified city.
“I am far removed from your sight,”
I said in my alarm.
Yet you heard the voice of my plea
when I cried for help.
Love the Lord, all you saints.
He guards his faithful
but the Lord will repay to the full
those who act with pride.
Be strong, let your heart take courage,
all who hope in the Lord.
Glory to the Father….
Word of God. Zechariah 2:8b-9
People will live in Jerusalem as though in open country, because of the multitude of men and beasts in her midst. But I will be for her an encircling wall of fire, says the Lord, and I will be the glory in her midst.
Of you are told glorious things,/
O city of God! (Ps 87:3)
Canticle of Zechariah
I will be a shield to this city. (Is 38:6)
Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel;
he has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty savior,
born of the house of his servant David.
Through his holy prophets he promised of old
that he would save us from our enemies,
from the hands of all who hate us.
He promised to show mercy to our fathers
and to remember his holy covenant.
This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham:
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear,
holy and righteous in his sight
all the days of our life.
You, my child, shall be called the prophet
of the Most High;
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
to give his people knowledge of salvation
by the forgiveness of their sins.
In the tender compassion of our God
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness
and the shadow of death,
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.
Glory to the Father…
Secure in the city of God’s love for us, we pray:
R/Dwell with us, O Lord!
For those who dwell in the deserts of our present cities:
– lead them home to the city built upon Christ. R/
For those who wander homeless in an uncertain world:
– gather them into the circle of your love. R/
For those who take shelter within the flimsy walls of false securities:
– bring them into the safety of your presence. R/
Lord Jesus Christ, in you we have a strong city, built upon rock and surrounded with the fire of the divine presence. Grant that we may always dwell in you, who live and reign with the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen.