Discernment Prayers


A Prayer for Wisdom and Peace When Making Big Decisions 

Dear heavenly Father, you number our hairs and determine our days; you hang the stars and feed the sparrows; you open doors no one can shut and shut doors no one can open. Surely, we can trust you when the time comes for making big decisions, or for that matter, any decisions. We are in just such a season again, Father, and we know we are not alone. We will trust you for generous wisdom, straight paths and peaceful hearts, all for your glory.

     How we praise you for being the decision-making-God. It’s not our decisions, but yours that make all the difference. We will plan, but we trust you to order our steps. We will pray, but ask you to fix our prayers en route to heaven. We will seek counsel, but count on you to overrule faulty or incomplete input from our most trusted friends and mentors. We will search the Scriptures, but not looking for proof texts but for you, Father. All we want and need is you.

     Free us from the paralysis of analysis—wanting to make the right decision, more than we want to be righteous people; wanting to be known as wise people, more than we want to know you. Free us from the idolatry of assuming there’s only one “perfect” choice in any given situation. Free us from making decisions primary for our comfort and other’s approval, or fear their disapproval. Free us to know that good choices don’t always lead to the easiest outcomes, especially at first. Free us from second and twenty-second guessing our decisions.

     Father, no matter if it’s wisdom about buying or selling, vocation or vacation, this place or that place, this person or that person, we know that in ALL things, your will is our sanctification—our becoming more and more like Jesus. Give us this passion; make it our delight.

     So, Father, make us more and more like Jesus, even as we trust you for the opening and closing of doors that are in front of us. All for your glory—in our eating and drinking; and in our whatever’s, whenever’s and wherever’s. Amen.

 

- Written by Scotty Smith
-Offered by Jeff Coleman

Deep Listening

God of silence and God of all sound,
help me to listen.
Help me to do the deep listening to the sounds of my soul,
waiting to hear your soft voice calling me deeper into you.
Give me attentive ears
that begin to separate the noise from the sounds that are you;
you who have been speaking to me
and through me my whole life,
for so long that you can seem like background noise.
Today help me hear you anew.

- Author Unknown

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Help Me To Discern

Today, O God of all days,
give me an experience of your heart.
Draw me deep into your very being,
into the core of your love for me, others, and the world.
Give me a glimpse of others the way you see others:
loving them, forgiving them,
and delighting in the way they give glory to God
through their very existence.
Help me to discern out of that open place of deep affection
so that I too might be a useful vessel of your love in the world.

- Author Unknown

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Your Heart Today

Where there is fear I can allay,
Where there is pain I can heal,
Where there are wounds I can bind,
And hunger I can fill:
Lord, grant me courage,
Lord, grant me strength,
Grant me compassion
That I may be your heart today.
Where there is hate I can confront,
Where there are yokes I can release,
Where there are captives I can free
And anger I can appease:
Lord, grant me courage,
Lord, grant me strength,
Grant me compassion
That I may be your heart today.
When comes the day I dread
To see our broken world,
Protect me from myself grown cold
That your people I may behold.
And when I've done all that I could,
Yet, there are hearts I cannot move,
Lord, give me hope,
That I may be your heart today.

- Fr. Manoling Francisco, SJ

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Give Me Discerning Eyes

Almighty God,
author of my life,
help me learn to read what you have written on my heart.
Give me discerning eyes
and an untiring spirit
to look within me
in order to understand how to reach outside of me.
And once I have begun to read you aright,
give me the generosity to help others to read you,
to sound you out one letter,
one word of radical giving at a time.

- Author Unknown

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Prayer for Communal Discernment in a Meeting

Good and loving God, our source of love and light -
Thank you for bringing us together today
in a spirit of generosity.
May we honor one another
by keeping an open mind.
May we voice our truth
and listen with an open heart.
May we discern your will
to unite in fruitful outcome.
We ask for your wisdom and grace,
to use our talents for the betterment of others.
With gratitude, we offer this prayer in your name.

- Debra Mooney, PhD

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Help Me Learn To Read My Heart

Almighty God,
author of my life,
help me learn to read what you have written on my heart.
Give me discerning eyes
and an untiring spirit
to look within me
in order to understand how to reach outside of me.
And once I have begun to read you aright,
give me the generosity to help others to read you,
to sound you out one letter,
one word of radical giving at a time.

- Author Unknown

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