Spirit of Life, God of Many Names, and One Transforming and Abundant Love,
We pause before the end of Summer and the birth of Autumn.
In our city of stone and metal, we sometimes miss the constant little changes that lead us toward the more profound.
Help us to slow our pace long enough to feel the cooling of the air,
To greet the changing colors, and to say goodbye to the robins.
So too in our own stories, we often forget that our lives are not as constant as they seem.
Our children are slowly growing,
our classes will begin and end semester after semester,
our employment will not last forever,
we will find that next job,
we are ageing.
Remind us to honor what is passing before us,
To love what is with us right now, as best we can,
And to keep hope alive in our hearts for what the days ahead have in store.
We are ever able to choose to face the joys and the sorrows with a sense of appreciation:
For the little things that only bring a smile to our own lips,
For the stories we enter for a time,
For the lives we are honored to know – and for those who are blessed to know us.
God of Hope, bless us now with an openness to what’s to come,
Soften our hearts before the everyday compassion we witness,
For the small daily acts of kindness we give freely,
For the warmth we show when the awkward smile is all we can give.
The act of living is a miracle we can never fully explain,
Only a gift we are given,
A gift we are blessed to share as wide as we can.
We hold in our hearts this hour the families who are still awaiting news of their sons and daughters serving abroad. We pray for an end to the unrest in the middle-east, for the safety of all the lives at risk, and a broadening of mutual understanding between the nations. May their land and ours, wracked by years of war, come to find peace.