Posts Tagged ‘daily prayer’

 

This Day, Revised

Posted on: August 7th, 2019 by Alden No Comments

Here’s a meditation about living a life of love and honor in service to G-d and the world. It is offered now as a balm in the face of a difficult week of mass shootings in the U.S. The first two stanzas pose questions: “What do I ask of this day?” and “What does this day ask of me?” This revised version adds a final stanza, in the tradition of Jewish prayer, restating and strengthening the core message.

This Day, Revised
What do I ask of this day?

Joy and laughter.
Kindness and grace.
To live with dignity and compassion,
Humility and strength.
Work. Honest Labor.
A job. A livelihood.
Food. Clothing. Shelter.
Gratitude and hope.
Love and contentment.

What does this day ask of me?

Humor and wonder.
Forgiveness and surrender.
To act with reverence and respect.
To be awake and alive
With passion and commitment.
Justice. Righteousness. Charity.
Integrity and honor.
Gratitude and hope.
Love and contentment.

G-d of blessings,
Let me be a source of peace,
A beacon of comfort,
And a well of blessings,
This day,
And every day,
In service to Your world.

© 2019 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com

Postscript: The original version of this prayer was first posted here on Nov. 27, 2011. Here are more brief prayers for the day: “Quick Meditation for Today,” “Quick Meditation at Noon,” “Your Name: Quick Prayer at Dusk” and “Quick Meditation at Night.”

Please check out my ELItalk video, “Falling in Love with Prayer,” and my two CCAR Press books: This Joyous Soul: A New Voice for Ancient Yearnings and This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day. For reprint permissions and usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” To receive my latest prayers via email, please subscribe (on the home page). You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Image Source: WikiMedia Commons

Before Morning

Posted on: August 27th, 2017 by Alden No Comments

In the dark and quiet night, a deep yearning sigh for a day of gentle kindness, blessings and peace. Half-awake, a yearning that arrives before morning…

Before Morning
Before morning breaks,
Before the birds begin to sing,
As dawn approaches from beyond the horizon,
And the deep quiet night prepares to depart,
Let the angels secretly bless me.
Let their song echo in my yearning soul.

Before morning breaks,
Before the traffic builds,
As light approaches from the waking day,
And responsibilities prepare to arrive,
Let the love of life surround me,
And joy flow from my grateful heart.

G-d who created light,
Holy One who renews creation,
Bless the coming day with Your majesty and love.
Bless the hours with Your kindness and grace.
Bless the moments with hope and healing.
Let our songs of praise rise before You,
And let peace descend from the highest heavens
To cover the earth.

© 2017 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Please check out my ELItalk video, “Falling in Love with Prayer,” and This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day. For reprint permissions and usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” To receive my latest prayers via email, please subscribe (on the home page). You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo Source: National Park Service

On Handing Down an Heirloom Tallit at a Bar/Bat Mitzvah

Posted on: March 27th, 2016 by Alden No Comments

TallitThis idea for this prayer was suggested by a member of Rodef Shalom Congregation, Pittsburgh, whom I met while serving as their 5776 Yom Kippur Scholar. The idea resonated for me because I have three heirloom tallitot that I plan to pass along, when the time is right. Places for personalizing the prayer are shown with blank lines, followed by [instructions in brackets]. Other word choices are identified with a slash (“/”). This piece appears in This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day from CCAR Press.

On Handing Down an Heirloom Tallit at a Bar/Bat Mitzvah
Dear __________ [add name],
At this moment of your bar/bat mitzvah
I/we bequeath this tallit to you as a symbol of my/our pride in you
And in the hope that it will keep you connected to our history and our heritage.
This tallit was _________ [add background of the tallit].

May this moment be the beginning of a miraculous journey.
May this tallit become a cherished symbol of your Jewish life.
My prayer is that each time you put it on
You remember our family’s devotion to you,
That you remember this special moment,
And you remember the Jewish call to heal the world.
May it be God’s will that one day
You pass this tallit to the next generation, in love.

G-d of our fathers and mother,
Bless my/our _______ [identify the relationship; such as: daughter, grandson, niece]
With health and prosperity,
Wisdom and happiness,
A life of blessings and peace.
How splendid is this moment!
How amazing in beauty, trust and joy!
My heart is full.

ברוך אתה ה’ אלקינו מלך העולם
.שהחינו וקימנו והגיענו לזמן הזה

Baruch ata adonai elohenu melech ha olam,
shehecheyanu, v’kiyimanu, v’higiyanu laz’man hazeh.
Blessed are You Adonai our God, Ruler of the Universe
Who has given us life, sustained us, and allowed us to reach this day.

© 2017 CCAR Press from This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day

Postscript: Related prayers include: “Meditation on a Child’s First Torah Reading,” “Bind and Wrap,” “Light of G-d” and “Gathering, A Dream of Reunion.” And this is a related story called “Hershal Dovid: A Torah Reading Story.”

Please check out my ELItalk video, “Falling in Love with Prayer,” and This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day. For reprint permissions and usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” To receive my latest prayers via email, please subscribe (on the home page). You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo Source: Learn Hebrew Pod

Light of G-d

Posted on: November 11th, 2015 by Alden No Comments

Sunrise US Fish WildlifeThis meditation is inspired by the morning ritual for putting on the tallit, which opens with the two lines of barchi nafshi, (Psalm 104:1-2), continues with the blessing l’hitataif b’tzitzit and closes with four lines beginning mah yakar chasdecha (Psalm 36:8-11). Wrapping ourselves in the tallit, we remember that we’re surrounded by G-d’s light.

Light of G-d
How bright is Your garment of light!
How vast the curtain of heaven!
How great Your splendor and majesty!

I stand before You
In service to Torah and Mitzvot.
Ready. Willing. Present.
Dedicating my heart to You.
My soul singing in praise.

In Your light, we see light.
In Your light, we are bathed in light.
Wrapped in Your light,
We are sheltered by light.

Blessed are You,
Bringing light to the upright in heart.

© 2015 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: The lines “in Your light, we see light” and “in Your light, we are bathed in light” are alternative translations of the words “b’orech neireh or” from Psalm 36. The former and more literal of the two is from The Koren Siddur. The latter is from Siddur Sim Shalom. See also: “Bind and Wrap,” “Gathering: A Dream of Reunion” and “Morning Blessings.”

Please check out my ELItalk video, “Falling in Love with Prayer,” and This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day. For reprint permissions and usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” To receive my latest prayers via email, please subscribe (on the home page). You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo Source: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service National Digital Libaray

Bind and Wrap

Posted on: October 2nd, 2013 by tobendlight No Comments

item29Wearing talit and teffilin—Jewish sacred garments—has been described as a metaphor for the love between G-d and Israel. This prayer/poem reflects that metaphor. The first stanza represents Israel’s acceptance of G-d’s love. The second represents the acceptance of G-d’s word. This is my personal meditation to prepare for putting on talit and tefillin. I recently rediscovered joy in the mitzvah of tefillin, a joy I reclaimed while praying at the Kotel in support of the Women of the Wall. I wrote an essay about it, which I posted on my Times of Israel blog.

Addendum, January 11, 2015: I’ve gone from putting on tefillin once a month in solidarity with WOW to praying with tefillin most days of the week. I’ll write an essay about that soon.

Bind and Wrap
We wrap ourselves
In the unreachable
With a sheet of broad cloth.
Fringes tied with turns and knots.
We wrap ourselves
In G-d’s holy shelter.

We bind ourselves
To the unknowable
With each turn of the strap.
Black leather strung from a box.
We bind ourselves
To G-d’s holy word.

How do we hold onto the gifts around us?
How do we see the mysteries near to us?

Bind and wrap.
Bind and wrap.
Throughout our lives,
Bind and wrap.

© 2013 Alden Solovy and tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: Here’s a link to another prayer using the tallit as a metaphor, called “Gathering: A Dream of Reunion.”

For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” For notices of new prayers, please subscribe. You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter. If you use or like this prayer, please post a link to Facebook, your blog or mention it in a tweet. Please consider making a contribution to support this site and my writing.

Photo Source: Judaica 3000

This Day

Posted on: November 27th, 2011 by tobendlight No Comments

Here’s another prayer about living a life of love and honor in service to G-d and the world. To listen along, click on the triangle in the bar below (website only). The text follows.

This Day
What do I ask of this day?

Joy and laughter.
Kindness and grace.
To live with dignity and compassion,
Humility and strength.
Work. Honest Labor.
A job. A livelihood.
Food. Clothing. Shelter.
Gratitude and hope.
Love and contentment.

What does this day ask of me?

Humor and wonder.
Forgiveness and surrender.
To act with reverence and respect.
To be awake and alive
With passion and commitment.
Justice. Righteousness. Charity.
Integrity and honor.
Gratitude and hope.
Love and contentment.

© 2011 Alden Solovy and www.tobendlight.com. All rights reserved.

Postscript: Here are more brief prayers for the day: “Quick Meditation for Today,” “Quick Meditation at Noon,” “Your Name: Quick Prayer at Dusk” and “Quick Meditation at Night.”

If you like this prayer, post a link to your Facebook page, your blog or as part of a tweet. And don’t forget to click “like” on this page. Thanks. Please subscribe. For reprint permissions, see Share the Prayer!

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