Almighty and eternal God, you see how your saints are so few and indeed how rarely and infrequently they seek or promote your honor. And now, as unfortunately you can see, in churches and worldly governments as well as in common life there is a great sense of discord and dissension. Thus, dear Lord, we ask you that you would mercifully turn away, or, even as a father, temper our well-deserved punishments and leave us a true seed, so that we would not become like Sodom and Gomorrah.
Send faithful workers into your vineyard who do not speak of useless matters and made-up fables, who are not hypocrites, who are not proud, arrogant and lazy and self-assured. Ensure that they teach from unity of heart and that they are united in you; grant them humble hearts.
O Lord God, it is dearly needed! Bring your help, so that we would be consoled and taught rightly and remain in our Christian walk and life, that we would not be a stumbling block for others nor would we continue in sins against conscience. Protect us from sluggish people who do not observe your Word; sustain us by your Word which is pure, perfect and clear. Grant us endurance in suffering and crossbearing and rule us with your Holy Spirit, so that we would not fall into error and vice but instead would be and remain your dwelling and temple. Amen
Nikolaus Selnecker, 1530 – 1592, German Protestant Reformer
Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom.
O Lord, come back to us! How long will you delay? Take pity on your servants! Satisfy us each morning with your unfailing love, so we may sing for joy to the end of our lives. Give us gladness in proportion to our former misery! Replace the evil years with good. Let us, your servants, see you work again; let our children see your glory.
Oh come, let us sing to the Lord; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise! For the Lord is a great God, and a great King above all gods. In his hand are the depths of the earth; the heights of the mountains are his also. The sea is his, for he made it, and his hands formed the dry land.
Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker! For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand.
The Lord reigns forever; he has established his throne for judgment. He rules the world in righteousness and judges the peoples with equity. The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.
Answer me quickly, Lord; my spirit fails. Do not hide your face from me or I will be like those who go down to the pit. Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life.
with many songs and heavenly strings that praise you.
Before I explain the futility of human salvation,
I bow down to worship you.
Before I knock at the doors of the strong,
I bend down to seek you.
Before I start unpacking my worries,
I sing and thank you.
You are the one who brings forth justice to the oppressed, feeds the poor, and releases the prisoners. You freed the oppressed Joseph and Jeremiah from jail. In the lion’s pit, you were with Daniel, and you released Peter from chains. Rhoda shared the good news that the Lord answers the prayers of the godly ones. You freed your people from the chains of oppression, just as the prophets foretold.
You opened the eyes of the blind, and my own eyes have seen the glory of heaven. How many eyes have been bound by moral darkness? But with your light, they can see heavenly glories. You have straightened the bent ones and have relieved our worries. You have searched for the marginalized and taken care of the widows, the orphans, and the strangers.
O Lord, rule over my country, and let the evil of the enemy end!
Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord, my soul. I will praise the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live. Do not put your trust in princes, in human beings, who cannot save. When their spirit departs, they return to the ground; on that very day their plans come to nothing. Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord their God.
He is the Maker of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them— he remains faithful forever. He upholds the cause of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The Lord sets prisoners free, the Lord gives sight to the blind, the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down, the Lord loves the righteous. The Lord watches over the foreigner and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but he frustrates the ways of the wicked. The Lord reigns forever, your God, O Zion, for all generations. Praise the Lord.
O Lord, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether. You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it.
Turn to me and have mercy on me; show your strength in behalf of your servant; save me, because I serve you just as my mother did. Give me a sign of your goodness, that my enemies may see it and be put to shame, for you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.