Monday, September 7, 2009

Prayers for Labor Day

I'm sitting here trying to think about all the people whose labor I depend upon just so I can sit in an armchair, watching the U.S. Open, drinking my tea, and writing this blog. It's an amazing list. I'm glad to be reminded of it.

The collect for today is quite lovely. (As are the readings, all found here.)

Almighty God, you have so linked our lives one with another that all we do affects, for good or ill, all other lives: So guide us in the work we do, that we may do it not for self alone, but for the common good; and, as we seek a proper return for our own labor, make us mindful of the rightful aspirations of other workers, and arouse our concern for those who are out of work; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

This year, I'm particularly thinking about those who are unemployed. This is from the Book of Common Prayer.

Heavenly Father, we remember before you those who suffer want and anxiety from lack of work. Guide the people of this land so to use our public and private wealth that all may find suitable and fulfilling employment, and receive just payment for their labor; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Finally, one of my favorite prayers, from Compline.

O God, your unfailing providence sustains the world we live in and the life we live. Watch over those, both night and day, who work while others sleep, and grant that we may never forget that our common life depends upon each other's toil; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

(The picture is of two women picking tea leaves.)

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