Prayer for the Morning
Merciful is the Lord: come, let us sing praise!
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!
O thou, whom once they flocked to hear,
Thy words to hear, thy power to feel;
Suffer the sinners to draw near,
And graciously receive us still.
They that be whole, thyself hast said,
No need of a physician have;
But I am sick, and want thine aid,
And want thine utmost power to save.
Make this the acceptable hour!
Come, O my soul’s physician, thou!
Display thy sanctifying power,
And show me thy salvation now.
PSALM 38:2-11, 22-23
I know well the plans I have in mind for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare, not for woe! plans to give you a future full of hope. (Jer 29:11)
The penitential psalms very often speak of sin as a sickness brought on by the attack of enemies. Their vivid descriptions of the sinner’s sufferings remind us again and again that the misery of sin is not what God wants for his beloved children.
O Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger;
do not punish me, Lord, in your rage.
Your arrows have sunk deep in me;
your hand has come down upon me.
Through your anger all my body is sick:
through my sin, there is no health in my limbs.
My guilt towers higher than my head;
it is a weight too heavy to bear.
My wounds are foul and festering,
the result of my own folly.
I am bowed and brought to my knees.
I go mourning all the day long.
All my frame burns with fever;
all my body is sick.
Spent and utterly crushed,
I cry aloud in anguish of heart.
O Lord, you know all my longing:
my groans are not hidden from you.
My heart throbs, my strength is spent;
the very light has gone from my eyes.
O Lord, do not forsake me!
My God, do not stay afar off!
Make haste and come to my help,
O Lord, my God, my savior!
Glory to the Father….
Word of God (Isaiah 57:18-19)
I saw [my people’s] ways,/ but I will heal them and lead them;/ I will give full comfort/ to them and to those who mourn for them,/ I, the Creator, who gave them life.
Peace, peace to the far and the near,/ says the Lord; and I will heal them.
I will heal their defection,/ I will love them freely.
CANTICLE OF ZECHARIAH
I will restore you to health;/ of your wounds I will heal you, says the Lord. (Jer 30:17)
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…
Let us pray to the Divine Physician:
R/Have mercy on us, O Lord, for we have sinned.
Hold back the punishment we fear:
– grant us the healing for which we long. R/
Lift from us the burden of our guilt:
– grant us the freedom we have sold for illusions of pleasure or power. R/
Strengthen our longing for goodness:
– remove our foolish preferences for sinful rewards. R/
O God, our Healer and our Good, you sent your Son to cure the world’s sickness by taking upon himself the burden of its guilt. Heal the diseased vision that causes us to mistake evil for good; heal the sickened mind that causes us to mistake selfishness for love; heal the unhealthy habits that we have made our own, so that we may stand before you, whole in body, soul, and spirit, to sing your praise for ever with all the saints, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.